Spreading positivity one post at a time!

My (Second) First Day

It started and ended at a Cool Greens in downtown Oklahoma City.

A fitting ending to my last day

Well, sort of.

In December 2013, I met a friend at Cool Greens for lunch. She’d recently taken a job downtown, and we took some time to catch up.

Unknown to anyone at the time, I had an interview scheduled right down the street.

At my dream company.

I wanted to scream it from the rooftops when we met for lunch that day, but I kept it to myself.

I interviewed the first week of January, and was offered the job in February.

In terms of a job, it was all I ever wanted. Among a handful of companies in Oklahoma envied by all, and highly competitive.

Every other Friday off, a doctor’s office onsite, a state of the art gym, beautiful amenities, completely innovative, and the best people around.

Farewell 💗

However, leaving my then-current employer wasn’t completely easy either.

It was close to home, I liked the people, I had good benefits, and most importantly- I worked for the best.boss.ever.

Unfortunately, I had successfully burned myself out. I had seven weeks of vacation banked and never felt like I could take a day. I was ready for a change, but only at the right place.

And it happened.

In March 2014 I said goodbye to my friends of nearly six years and took the job at my dream company.

But not before my old company sent me off with a Vitamix.

I left there on a Friday and started on a Monday.

What was I thinking!? smile

Turns out, the company was everything I thought it would be, and more. Pinch me.

Seriously.

The Lord began preparing my heart for the move during the fall of 2013, and it was worth the wait.

I couldn’t believe I got to work there everyday. Everything was perfect.

Then, the bottom dropped in the oil market.

We nervously watched it go lower, and lower, and lower, hitting below $27 a barrel at the beginning of the year.

How did we get here so quickly?

It was grim, and we all knew it.

Previously, my company never had a layoff due to commodity pricing, but we knew it was probably inevitable.

In January, they announced what we all feared-a large scale layoff due to commodity pricing.

Have you ever been through something like that?

It takes an emotional toll on a person. As the newbie, I was convinced I would be let go.

Office chatter was tense. Each person had resigned themselves to the fact that they were on “the list” for reasons x,y, and z.

I trusted the Lord and spent much time on my knees in my closet, crying out to Him. Telling Him I would trust Him “when” it happened.

And then it happened.

Only, I was blessed enough to get to keep my job.

It’s funny how we can convince ourselves we know what God is doing, and then He up and surprises us.

Staying was a huge blessing, but in a way far differently than I anticipated.

After the layoffs, things were vey different. I quickly decided a few things I had ignored for a long time weren’t going to be as easy to ignore.

Skipping ahead a little, I began to pray about whether I was supposed to stay where I was.

I didn’t want to leave, but I continued to see evident signs that the Lord had another plan.

Through a series of His orchestrated hands, I reached out to a former coworker about a possible opportunity with a new company.

A conversation with him led to a conversation with my former boss, and when all was said and done, a position was created for me at my former company and I had the opportunity to return.

There was a lot of prayer and long conversations with Will in between, but for the sake of this post I think I’ve covered the gist.

I turned in my notice two weeks ago, and finished up work this week.

It was hard to leave because I truly loved where I was. However, I know the Lord was at work in these events.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned these last two years, it’s that trust and obedience in the Lord are beautiful things (but they’re not always easy!).

I know in my heart I am going where I’m supposed to be, but that doesn’t mean I won’t miss my new friends.

I bid farewell to my friends and coworkers Thursday. One of my friends took me out to Cool Greens for lunch that day.

I thought it was fitting, bringing everything to full circle.

A good way to close out one chapter and begin another.

I was so sad to leave my previous job in 2014, but as I drove off Thursday I was actually ok. I’m sad to leave friends, but no tears were shed and I honestly don’t feel that sad. I know I’m going where I’m supposed to.

That’s a good feeling.

I start my “second first day” Monday.

I was off Friday, and Will and I took the opportunity to make a quick trip to Perkins for pie and muffins.

Perkins

Because how else would you celebrate a new job when you’re an 87 year old living in a 30-something’s body?!

Exactly.

So yeah, big life changes. Again.

I wanted to capture everything here while it was fresh on my mind. I like having this space for things like this.

I also think I might check in a little more often than I have been, how about that!?

That’s it for now. Here’s to a good (second) first day! 💗

Thieves in the Temple

We were at the Super Bowl.

The rainy one, where he played.

Britt's Pics 078

Had I know how “epic” it truly was, I probably would have taken more pictures.

Like many of you, I grew up listening to Prince.

The world remains rocked about his death, outpouring reflective tweets, pictures, and posts.

Heartbroken over a musical genius.

Anguished about his greatness and the hole he will forever leave in the music industry.

My heart grieves his death from a completely different aspect.

I (obviously) didn’t know Prince.

I don’t know his heart, or who he was in his quiet moments.

I don’t know what he thought about before he went to sleep, or who he was when no one was watching.

Though he was a Jehovah’s Witness, who do not believe Jesus to be equal with God or able to atone for the sins of man, I don’t know if perhaps he did believe in Jesus. The true Prince of Peace.

I don’t know.

And so I grieve based solely on the fruits of what I do know.

Remembering life is short.

Remembering the things this world holds dear, that what they love as treasures, are so different than that which our Savior holds dear.

Remembering the things of this world shall pass away, but the Word of our God shall last forever.

That, for the most part, the movies, music, and trappings we enjoy will burn as chaff in His fire one day.

I don’t want to be remembered for my contributions in this fleeting world, no matter how great they may be (and trust me, I live a very small life and will never be esteemed as one who offered “brilliance").

I want to be remembered as a girl who loved God.

Who, despite my huge mistakes, was changed by His grace and truly, fully, wholeheartedly loved Him because of it. 

Who lived a life that was devoted to Him, and who left the souls of man forever changed for eternity because of it.

When I die one day, the world will not be full of saddened tweets about how I changed history.

In fact, in the grand scheme of the entire world, very few people will even know it happened.

I don’t want to change history.

I want to change eternity.

I don’t want to live for this moment.

I want to live forever.

So when I see the world grieving the loss of a musical giant, I grieve because they’re saddened over the wrong things.

I’m not saying it’s wrong to be sad, please don’t misunderstand. We all mourn the deaths of those we love.

It’s all about perspective.

One day we will stand before our Lord to give an account.

In spite of the fact everyone wants to believe we all worship the same God and just get to Him on different paths, there’s only one true God.

One true Path.

I realize these words probably don’t make sense to most.

However, for the few who know where I’m coming from, remember life is short.

May we not let the trappings of this life steal our eyes from our true Treasure.

To my fellow Christians, I implore you to live a life devoted to His work.

May we be more saddened over the loss of souls than music.

In keeping with Colossians 3, may we set our minds on things above, not on earthly things.
Perspective

Don’t know Him? Click here

33: Introverts Unite! (Quietly. In our own houses.)

I’m 33 today.

So am I technically still early 30s or have I officially moved into the dreaded “mid-30s?”

Don’t answer that.

As in years past, I wanted to take a moment today to share deep and meaningful (😉) life lessons I learned on the road from 32 to 33.

In all honesty, and as silly as it sounds, I really think I “grew up” and got to know myself better this past year.

It’s been a year of reflecting and trusting the Lord. Tossing away much of the useless nonsense that consumed my life for far too long.

It wasn’t an easy year, but it’s certainly been worth it. 💗

1. I think that maybe (??) I’ve become more of an introvert in my old age.

True story.

Growing up as an army brat that moved tons, I never had a problem making friends and being heavily involved in heaps of activities. I loved people, and I loved doing “stuff.”

Still, I’ve was always been fairly quiet and timid (unless I’m among my trusted “tribe"). I’ve noticed over the last couple of years that my preference is for more intimate, less chaotic engagements.

I still love people, and I still (occasionally) love doing “big” stuff...but in smaller doses, and with my favorite people rather than the whole farm. 😊

So yeah, kind of a big revelation I discovered this past year. Ha!

2. Triscuits are the jam.

Yes.

Go buy a box of the cracked black pepper & olive oil, or the dill ones.

Once you buy them you’ve pretty much surrendered to the fact that they have to be in your kitchen cabinet ALWAYS.

3. Social media is overrated.

I know this isn’t the consensus, especially for people my age and younger, but seriously- for me, it’s true.

I enjoy taking huge breaks from the rat race that is social media (see #1 above).

I often use Lent as an opportunity to disconnect, and find my usage continues to say very minimal afterward.

It makes me more present and aware of the moment.

Of actual life in the flesh.

Of all the little moments before my eyes I often miss when I’m buried in my phone.

No lie- I can’t tell you how many times I’ve looked up from my phone and can’t remember the last 10 minutes of real life around me.

Yes, I completely agree there’s a time and place. There are so many people dear to me that I can connect with through social media when I normally wouldn’t see them except major holidays.

I also see the value in social media (um, after all this is a blog post), but I also see so much more value in investing in the life right in front of me.

All about balance.

4. Silence is golden.

(See #1 and #3)

I find I often busy myself with noise.

The radio is always on.

The TV is always on.

I’m on my phone.

I’m constantly distracted.

I can’t focus and hear the voice of God.

When I finally intentionally quiet myself and step away from the craziness of life, it feels wrong sometimes.

Because I feel as though something should be done. That I need to be acting or moving or doing.

It feels unnatural because we’re constantly faced with stimulation.

Yet, when I force myself to declutter my mind and sit in the stillness of God’s word and actually listen, I find Him. I hear His Truth and desires.

It takes focus, but He promises He rewards those who earnestly and diligently seek Him. And it’s worth it.

5. Marie Callender’s Cherry Crunch Pie will make you hate yourself.

Seriously.

Don’t do it.

It’s so dang good, and you’re going to loathe loving it so much.

6. I enjoy at-home workouts as much as gym ones.

I suppose I always have, however given the choice, I’d always given the edge to the gym.

I love the versatility of at-home workouts in the privacy of my own living room.

Who cares if I’m sweating like a pig and don’t smell like roses!?

Boz and Lucy sure don’t mind. Haha

7. Things don’t go as planned.

Obvs.

But seriously, I’ve been extremely blessed my entire life and had been shielded from a lot of heartache.

The Lord has been doing lots of pruning on my heart in this season of trials, and it hasn’t always been easy or enjoyable.

Nonetheless, I can look back on this last year and consider all my plans and see how the Lord has steered our life in such a different direction (see Proverbs 16:9).

Not as I planned, yet I can still see His hand in it all and have peace.

8. Clean your shower every week.

Seriously. I know you probably hate it as much as I do, but DO IT already.

As we both know, the longer we wait, the worse it gets.

Need motivation?

Mix one cup of vinegar and one tablespoon of blue Dawn dish soap in a spray bottle and soak your shower with it.

Let it sit a few hours and then wipe.

Game changer.

You’re welcome.

9. Truth matters.

Unpopular, but true.

We want to live in this huge gray area so as not to offend anyone, but the fact of the matter is- you’re always going to offend someone. I firmly believe there’s a way to hold the line without being a jerk, which is what the media seems to portray anytime one “side” disagrees with another.

Truth counts, so own it and stand firm in your convictions and dialogue in love, don’t yell and flail in hate.

10. I’ve become a full-blown carnivore again.

Real life.

Well… Sort of.

I still aim for more of a veggie friendly diet, but I’ve also been adding chicken and fish to my diet 1-2 times a week.

Plus I pretty much can’t turn down grilled Chick-Fil-A nuggets.

They pretty much sent me to the edge, and it didn’t take much more to jump thereafter. Ha!

Brittny Flint-3 years old with weird chicken

11. Deep condition your hair.

And if it’s super dry like mine, do it every time you wash it. I used to think deep treatments were once a month type things until I started doing them twice a week.

Game changer. I’ll never go back now!

12. I have friends who genuinely care.

Y’all, I am so thankful for my inner circle of friends. I have been uplifted so many times this year by their love and encouragement.

13. This life isn’t mine to live.

This is the biggest lesson.

It’s something I’ve known as a Christian in theory, but have finally begun to behold.

I’m so done with trying to live my “best life now” with no consideration for standing before Jesus one day.

I want to be selfless and give more. Care more. See people more. Act more. Love more. Stand more.

Not for me or some meaningless cause, but for Jesus and Truth. Even when it’s unpopular.

I’m so done wasting my life and want 33 (and beyond) to be one of surrender and awe.

To see what God can do if I’d simply get out of the way.

So yeah.

Streams of consciousness from my heart to yours.

Here’s to 33. 💗

33

Q1 Life Things

Q1.

I crack myself up trying to be all business-y.

Anyway, I promised a big, fat life update, so away we go!

Work Things
I figured I’d lead with work stuff because it’s been the most all-consuming aspect of my life these days.

If you live in Oklahoma, you know how hard we’ve been hit with the oil and gas industry downturn.

It’s been awful.

Our state has a $1B deficit, small industry-related companies are buckling, and larger ones are laying off hundreds.

It’s rough all around, y’all.

I’ve experienced a small degree of company reductions before, but nothing like since entering into this field when the market dropped. It’s been heartbreaking.

My company had a huge round of layoffs recently, but thankfully I’m still there. It’s been intense and a huge stretch of faith!

I have no idea what the future holds for the market and what comes next, but I’m trusting God with where He wants me.

So yeah, that’s the big update there!

Will has had some bites and interviews but nothing has come through. When you’ve got tons of laid off people and “x” amount of jobs in OKC, the matter quickly becomes more challenging. We would definitely welcome prayers!

Family Things
My dad had a health scare a couple of weeks ago that had us all on edge.

Between that and bracing for layoffs, last month was a little nuts!

Thankfully his results returned negative so he is in the clear and will have another checkup later this year.

My mom has been baking delicious foods and it’s killing me. I hate eating my feelings, but let’s face it, who’s going to turn down their mom’s cooking!?

P is busy as a working woman, mother, and newlywed. She turned 26 on February 24th.

Which only reminds me how much older I’m getting.

Layla kills me. Every time I see her. I can barely stand it.

That sassy pants won’t ever stop talking!

Seriously. I can’t even take the cuteness. Sensory overload.

Minnie!

Will and I watched her awhile ago and it was quite a hoot. She wore us out! We have our plan of attack for next time-

Chuck E. Cheese.

Tucker her out there and then take her home.😂

Other related family things
Did I blog about my trip to Iowa with my parents last summer?

If I didn’t, you missed out on a gem of a post.

Traveling with them at their age now compared to when I was a kid is hilarious.

A complete 180.

I’m not even kidding, I remember making the 10 hour trip to Colorado in nine hours with just one potty break.

One.

I realize that may not be a big deal, but to a kid that has zero capacity to fully understand the need to “make good time” or to “hold it,” let’s just say it was rough.

Anyway, the Iowa trip was completely opposite.

Leisurely, laid back, even enjoyable. Stops every other hour.

Real life.

Who the heck are these guys!?

I’m taking another road trip with them next month. I’m loaded down with books and magazines to keep me occupied, as well as my 64 oz travel mug.

Hey- I no longer fear large quantities of water on these road trips. Bring it.

Meaningless things I think you should know

Will and I took a quick road trip to Ponca City a few weeks ago to eat at Perkins.

We always enjoy their pie and muffins. It reminds us of our trips home from Kuwait when we’d stop in Minneapolis to do some shopping before heading to Oklahoma.

Perkins pie. Dead.

Perkins muffins. Also dead.

***
I handled the work stress fairly well and really tried to rest in Jesus throughout the process.

However I was probably a little more knitted up about it all than I realized because last month a baby patch of three gray hairs appeared.

I call them my oil and gas grays.

I got my hair done last week and my stylist noticed my two gray hairs.

I told her I had three earlier that day but plucked one before going to work. 😂

So yeah. Old people problems. More crap to keep up with.

Fantastic.

***
The weather has been beautiful lately, so Will and I have been taking lots of walks. It’s been a good treat. Extra exercise and long talks.

We attempt to solve all the world’s problems in 30 minutes.

We’ve got it all figured out, ya’ll.

Will for president.

Just sayin.

***
We did another round with the Aerogardens! This is my third one and Will’s second.

Round three (and two)

I did a variety of fun stuff (that I can’t recall now of course), but lavender, cilantro, and Thai basil are among the new ones.

Will did another round of pepper plants. I can’t even tell you all the super spicy peppers his one plant yielded. Crazy!

We replanted his pepper plant and hope it’ll make it. We replanted my basil and lime basil plants, too.

They’re starting to look a little sad, but I’m hoping they’ll pull through!

***
I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned this before, but on average my body temp consistently hovers between 95.8 and 97 degrees.

Weird, yes?

I got a tetanus shot a few weeks ago and it was 96.4. The nurse said she doesn’t see it often, but it happens.

Unfortunately, it hasn’t made Will more amenable to upping the heat on the house. Ha!

12
Will and I will celebrate our twelfth anniversary on the 13th.

Will taking Brittny's garter off

How does that even happen!?

I can’t believe we’re already at number 12. We are very blessed.

We’re “celebrating” by going to an RV show with Will’s parents this weekend. Haha

They’re visiting and hoping to narrow down their search while they’re here. It should be fun.

destination beautiful

So in terms of spiritual stuff, there’s lots to share there too.

For years I felt a tug on my heart that perhaps we should not be at the church where we attended.

The struggle, though, was the comfortability factor. Knowing what to expect, being connected with others, getting involved.

Yet I continued to feel this same press on my heart.

Will never felt the same way, so I decided to pray about it.

Long story short, through a series of events we decided the Lord was leading us somewhere else.

It was sad to leave, and I miss seeing dear friends every week, but I have no doubt we were being obedient.

We’ve been attending elsewhere since this past fall, and I really believe we’ve found our home church. We haven’t joined yet, but I continue to feel a peace that this is where we will join and plant roots.

So yeah, there’s that!

I gave up social media for Lent, and it’s been a wonderful decision.

Don’t get me wrong, I miss staying connected with people I don’t see regularly. However, the time away has been a wonderful break to quiet myself and be less caught-up in a scrolling news feed.

It’s really brought stillness to my life during a time when I need it. It’s helped me be more present and intentional. In fact, I would encourage everyone to take a day or two of each week and disconnect from the virtual stressors of life, even if they’re “good” stresses.

Putting a Bow on Everything

So yeah. That’s about it these days.

I paid for my blog host/domain again, though it desperately needs modernization.

I continue to think about it, but have no solid plans for “what’s next” here. If anything, I might up and just start from scratch. When I had this site designed 1,000 years ago, it was super technical and in the weeds of coding and back-end confusion, and I have no idea how to make heads or tails of it all.

So yeah, there’s that!

Anyway, I intend to continue semi regularly keep posting so definitely make sure your blog feeds are updated.

Thank you for checking in! More to come!

Mustard Seed Faith

One of my dear friends bought me this beautiful necklace for Christmas.

Truth

To most, its just a regular necklace. However, to me it’s been a daily reminder of the Lord’s faithfulness.

Truth

You see that?

The flower with a teeny tiny dot in the center?

It’s a a mustard seed.

So small, so insignificant.

Yet we’re reminded both in Matthew and Luke that with the faith of a mustard seed, little becomes much when it’s given to the Lord.

Truth

If you’ve grown up in church you’ve heard the stories. If you haven’t, well now you have a little exposure.

The truth is, hearing the stories of “having faith the size of a mustard seed” and actually having faith the size of a mustard seed are two very different things.

Truth

It’s easy for me to say I have “big faith in God.”

That I trust Him whole heartedly to move my mountains and use the hurts and trials in my life for the glory of His namesake.

Those are good sound bytes that easily roll off the tongue and exude the appearance of deep spirituality.

But the truth is, over the last several months, I’ve truly begun to grasp why Jesus uses such a minuscule object to illustrate such a beautiful lesson.

You’d think it’d be easy to have faith the size of a mustard seed, but it can be quite a challenge!

When the storms of this life rage around us, when we’re in the thick of it and can’t breathe, when we feel the weightiness of this life bearing down on us, it can be hard to have such “big” mustard seed faith.

It can be scary to let go and trust God.

It feels like a tall task some days.

That’s why I can’t help but know in my heart that’s why Jesus used the mustard seed as an example.

When we look at it, it’s tiny. It reminds us that when we yield our whole lives to Him and trust Him with our entire being it feels humongous. Because, in our earthly eyes, it is’

Yet God can take the “simple” obedience of our surrender and multiply it infinitely farther than we ever imagined.

He’s our infinite God. Nothing is to big for Him! The struggle we feel to have “big” mustard seed faith reminds us how vast He is.

It’s not us who “moves the mountains,” it’s Him. It’s not us who “uproots the trees,” it’s Him.

In the grand scheme of this entire world, our lives and stories are very small. Yet they never go to waste when we yield ourselves to Him. He is able to take our lives and accomplish glory to His name when we simply put our trust in Him to do what He says.

So if you’re struggling to hand over the “big” things over the Jesus, you’re not alone. It can be hard. But may we be reminded all He can accomplish in and through us for His glory if we take a step of faith and let Him do the rest.

It only takes the faith of a mustard seed.

I owe a big fat life update, which will follow soon. I will look forward to catching up! ❤️

Multiplied

Check out John 6.

Truth

Are we content with five loaves and two fish?

I think so.

We’re “feasting” on crumbs when God wants to multiply, share, and do so very much more in our lives.

I watch many of my brothers and sisters who rely heavily on church leaders, and authors, and speakers to guide their spiritual walks.

These people are good. Praise God for how they have ministered to my own spiritual walk.

But they’re not Jesus.

They didn’t die for us so that we may live. They didn’t conquer the grave or know us before we were even born.

We want the two minute, Cliff’s notes theology when we could truly be knowing, intimately knowing, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

Are we settling for crumbs, thinking we have plenty? Thinking we have enough?

There’s more friends, so much more.

Truth

If we would place our lives, our hearts, in the hands Jesus we would see just how far these “loaves” can go.

He can do infinitely more in our relationship with Him when He’s the center; not a preacher, self-help spiritual book, or anything else.

Again, those things are certainly helpful, but they should be in addition to our personal intimate relationship with Jesus, not in place of.

Go to the Source, the Well, the Living Water. The Bread of Life.

He declares himself as such for a reason.

We’re settling for crumbs.

How often are we digging deep into scripture?

On our face in prayer?

Fasting for the lost?

Do we know the heart of Jesus for ourselves, or do we rely on others to tell us about Him?

Oh friends our God, our great God, wants to do so much more.

He wants to take our lives and bring Himself glory.

That means knowing Him. Watching Him take the loaves and fish of our lives and do as He pleases.

It means no more settling for enough, or being spoon fed by others.

It means graduation from spiritual milk to actual meat.

Truth

To love Him enough to put in the time and effort to seek Him.

The Bible tells us He rewards those who earnestly and diligently seek Him. Him!

Truth

When we have forgotten it’s all about HIM, not us?

I can only imagine what He might do with a handful of His servants who are yielded that He may multiply their offering for His glory.

No more settling.

No more crumbs.

2016: Here’s to the Journey

New Year’s Eve was full of reflection in the B-Love house.

As you may remember, 2015 did not go as we anticipated or hoped.

We spent the last night of 2015 talking about our expectations for the year and how differently they played out. Who would have thought the bottom would have fallen out of the oil and gas industry, and that selling our half of the business might have been one of the best things that could have happened to us at the time?

Yet, before all that came to pass, our initial expectations for 2015 were quite different based on our limited knowledge.

As a preacher I know once said- We only have a few pieces of the puzzle, but God has the whole box top and sees how it all goes together.

We spent lot of time that night evaluating dreams, the past, the future, the “whys?” and the “what’s next?”

I told Will I was frustrated.

I could clearly see God’s hand and protection over us with how things happened with the business.

What a huge, huge blessing we can now look back on and see. How he made provision to protect us even when, at the time, we thought everything was crumbling around us.

Yet, ever since then, I haven’t really been able to detrrmine God’s guidance regarding what’s next.

I kept waiting for Him to show up in some mighty way this year. Divinely showing Will that he was supposed to go back into the ministry.

Yet, that opportunity came and went this year too (though I didn’t post about it on the blog).

Lots of waiting.

Lots of wondering.

Lots of wandering.

I told Will I was frustrated because I’m here. I’ve got my arms stretched out wide asking God, begging God, to use me.

To take my life and do as He pleases. To show me where to go. To open doors and give me opportunities to bring Him glory.

Yet, nothing.

More waiting.

More wondering.

More wandering.

More questions than answers.

It’s like we’re in the car ready to drive but have no directions to our destination.

“It would be a lot easier if He’d just tell us what to do next!” I told Will.

Will is used to my impatience.

He looked at me and said what I already knew.

“It’s the journey Brittny.  It’s the journey.”

“Do you think Abraham would have truly trusted God if he already knew a sacrificial lamb was waiting for him when we went to the mountain with Isaac?”

The journey is about being refined.

It’s a process.

We talked about the “Hall of Faith” in Hebrews and how long, how incredibly long, most of the people had to wait for God’s full plan to come to pass.

Just like us, they waited. They probably wondered, and perhaps they even wandered and floundered sometimes too.

But they trusted and are counted as the faithful saints who placed themselves in God’s hands when they couldn’t see the whole picture. They rested in knowing He “had the box top.”

Step by step, day by day.

Being refined in His likeness.

God’s still here.

He’s always here.

He often doesn’t do what we expect, but that doesn’t mean He’s not at work.

We agreed we likely won’t see the fullness of our 2015 story for quite some time, because it’s a journey.

We will simply step out in faith this year and “do the next thing,” trusting that God will redirect if that’s not the right next thing.

I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t anxious about 2016. Nervous about the oil and gas market and how it’s affected and is affecting our great state. Nervous about my job in this industry, just as my fellow colleagues are too.

I truly believe I will have to trust in and rely on the Lord more this year than ever before.

Remember my post about that? It still rings true. Everyday.

I pray this year brings us closer to Him, and that we see His hand in every move we make.

I pray this year we will draw closer to Him and let Him do as He pleases, even when we don’t understand.

I pray others will be strengthened around us and that God will glorify Himself in all we do.

To the journey of 2016.

To the glory of the Lord our God.

Merry Christmas Week

Merry Christmas friends!

I hope you’ve had a wonderful week full of good things.

I’ve had a hard time managing my expectations around how I wanted the week to go and how it’s actually gone.

Isn’t it always like that!?

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving, with more family attending this year than we’ve had in a long time.

Then I looked up, and it was Christmas week.

Let the online shopping, baking, Christmas card making, crafting, gatherings, and end of the year work stress commence.

I’ve been so wrapped up in the cares of this world that I’ve been distracted from the one and only thing that matters: beholding Jesus. Anticipating his coming as a baby, as well as his future coming for His bride.

I pray this week you and I both take a moment to clear the stressful thoughts clouding our minds and simply quiet ourselves before His glory.

To be held, and to behold. The baby Jesus, our mighty Lion from the tribe of Judah.

More to come…

This.

Will and Brittny Take Tennessee

Happy autumn friends!

Fall finally arrived in all its glory here, and I’m basking in cooler temperatures and all things pumpkin spice.

There’s so very much I want to share with you, so I’ve decided to do a two part post.

1. The first to recap our recent Tennessee vacation
2. The second (and my favorite!) to give you a big fat life update and share some of the things God is putting on my heart.

So let’s get moving back with that Tennessee recap!

This past Labor Day Will and I hopped on a plane and flew to the beautiful land of rolling hills and the friendliest people you’ll ever meet- Tennessee.

In the interest of actually getting this post done and on the blog, here’s a rundown of just the highlights each day.

Monday, 7 Sept
For a travel day, we did well. Usually we’re running around like madmen scrambling to get out the door. This year we had to drop the dogs off on Saturday instead of Monday, so it helped reduce the craziness.

Monday was a total travel day. Long and uneventful. Thankfully everything was on time and we got to Nashville late that afternoon.

We were tired and kept things low key. We stayed at the Music City Sheraton, so we checked in, hit a Kroger for a few items, and had dinner at chickfila.

Fancy schmancy.

I also got to sleep tons, y’all! It was great! In fact, I went to sleep close to 8 that night didn’t wake up until 7:30!

Vacations are the best.

Tuesday, 8 Sept
Our first full day of vacation was wonderful. We had a leisurely morning followed by a scenic drive outside Nashville.

We drove a little outside of the city to have brunch at the famous Loveless Cafe.

It was so darn fun!

It used to be a hotel back in the 60s and was a hidden gem for travelers. Known for their delicious homemade biscuits, they grew in popularity throughout the region.

They eventually converted the hotel into little adorable shops and just keep the restaurant open- and it’s always busy!

The biscuits and jam pretty much killed me.

Can't believe I get to have breakfast with this man everyday. Beyond blessed. 💗

I also went a little wild at the store.

And with pictures.

Loveless cafe and hotel. That's how we roll
😍Loveless Cafe

After brunch Will and I headed into Nashville to tour the Opry!
I found the backstage tour very interesting. I didn’t know much about the Opry before, so I learned heaps about the history.
We got our picture on the stage and our tour group even got to sing a song front and center. smile

The next big thing 😂 Will and Brittny take the Opry

We went to the mall across the street between the tour and the evening show. We had a quick bite at Moe’s and headed to see the show!

We were lucky enough to have a great show the night we went. I also had no idea it was a live radio show! Interesting.

The lineup

Wednesday, 9 Sept
Although I slept late again, I managed to get in a workout Wednesday morning.

We got a late start and after getting ready headed downtown to the Ryman. Much like the Opry, I didn’t know a whole lot about the history of the Ryman. I found its origins very interesting and enjoyed hearing how they’ve grown over the years and are still going strong.

Like the Opry, we were able to go backstage, onstage, take lots of pictures.

WB at the Ryman

If you’re traveling to Nashville and are torn between only wanting to do only one tour I’d definitely say to the Opry. I liked the Ryman, but the Opry was better.

Afterward, we drove around downtown and went to see The War Room.

Yep. We saw a movie we could have seen at home while we were on vacation.

Ah friends it was so good and totally drives home the importance for prayer. Life is a battle and we truly so have to fight the good fight equipped with the word of God as our sword.

Go see the movie and most importantly- find your personal prayer space and start talking to God!

We treated ourselves to the Marble Slab after our movie and walked around the Opry grounds.

Considering it was vacation and we had yet to have a really good meal (um not counting those dang delicious loveless biscuits!), we intended to have a decent dinner. However we ended up getting full on ice cream, like complete children, and spoiled our dinner. Haha

We went back to the hotel, watched TV, and called it a night.

Wild and crazy.

Thursday, 10 Sept

I got another good nights sleep and woke later than I intended. I managed to workout and quickly get ready. Today started my favorite stretch of the trip!

Before leaving Nashville we went back to the Opry Mills Mall and ate an early lunch at The Aquarium.

I’d been there ages ago, but Will had never been. He was completely enthralled. It was adorable. We got there early and were able to watch the marine biologist feed the fish. It was so very neat!
Will enthralled by the fish
Because we're on vacation

After our giant lunch, we drove a little outside of Nashville to Whites Creek, Tennessee.

The very hospitable and beautiful Inn at Fontanel.

The Inn at Fontanel. Gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous ❤️

Will arranged a little surprise for us to stay at the beautiful Inn at Fontanel. It’s this tiny and beautiful bed and breakfast hotel on Barbara Mandrel’s former property. Not only that, but you can tour her house, and it’s still the largest log cabin house in the nation at over 30,000 square feet!

I can’t even tell you how much I enjoyed every minute at this little bed and breakfast and all their little fun shops!

The staff was so nice and inviting and the whole atmosphere just screamed relaxation.

Our little bunker had a welcoming little mini porch, and our room was just as cozy.

After checking in we toured the grounds. We checked out the shop, the bistro, and the winery while waiting for our mansion tour to begin.

The mansion was flat out spectacular.
The Fontanel Mansion (formerly Barbara Mandrel's house)

The best part?

You’re really able to make yourself at home. If you want to pick up a guitar in the wall, lay on the furniture, get funny selfies- they’re game. It was so neat and totally different than most tours like that. Usually everything’s behind a velvet rope with a “do not touch” sign. So fun and so cool. I would have taken way more pictures than I did but my poor Will was picture-d out haha
Barbara Mandrel's bathroom and separate closet are a sight to see. Very impressive! Lots of space, lots of mirrors, lots of lights!
On Gretchen Wilson's four wheeler from the Redneck Woman video. #classy

Afterward, we hung around the hotel grounds, got a snack at the bistro and ate outside, and then went back to our room to watch the NFL season opener while I did a little work.

Oh- and we also experienced our first Goo Goo Clusters. 

Have you ever had one!?

Dead.

Friday 11 Sept
I was excited to rise early and enjoy the beauty of God’s glorious sunrise at the Fontanel.

“Because I am righteous, I will see you. When I awake, I will see you face to face and be satisfied.” ‭‭Psalms‬ ‭17:15‬ ‭NLT‬‬ Perfect way to begin my morning. Beautiful Tennessee sunrise

I intended to workout outside, and certainly made an attempt, but the Inn’s aggressive duck, Boomer, kept chasing me and made my outdoor workout impossible.

Boomer the duck was given a chance at a new life at the Fontanel but only lasted mere days because he was aggressive with the guests. Boomer did not like me and enjoyed chasing & hissing at me during our stay. 😂

(And as an aside, poor Boomer was so aggressive with the guests he only lasted a week before getting sent back to his owner!)

I moved my workout into their gym area. Afterward I enjoyed my Bible study on our little patio. It was such a beautiful morning!

We got ready and had breakfast in the main hotel area. Their continental breakfast was nothing like you typically think of when you think free breakfast. It was a delicious full meal.

Afterward, we are we took an extra long walk around the Fontanel grounds and enjoyed the beautiful weather. 
Post breakfast nature walk at the Fontanel

I was sad to leave mid morning. I could have enjoyed another full day there. Such a relaxing bed and breakfast and definitely well worth the little detour on route to Knoxville.

Speaking of Knoxville- that was the next stop on our trip!

We had a couple hours to drive as we headed that way, so we played “classic country Shazam trivia.” Haha

After the Christian music station went out we found a classic country station and I tested Will to see how much he knew.

He knew a lot.

Before we knew it, we were in Oak Ridge, Tennessee and at our hotel!

First order of business? Find some Tennessee barbecue.

We headed into Knoxville to find Will burnt tips. He’s been talking about and wanting them forever. We’ve never been able to find them in Oklahoma, so when we made vacation plans, “burnt tips” was on the list.

We ended up at Dead End BBQ for a mid afternoon lunch. It was packed and full of Vols.

We enjoyed our lunch and the manager stopped by and talked football with us for awhile. Lots of fun.

After dinner we hit up a Kroger for cookies (priorities) and called it a day.

Saturday, 12 Sept

Game day!

I got up early, worked out, and got around.

Anytime we head out of town we look to see if there’s a Perkins in the area.

That place always brings back good memories.  Anytime we’d fly into Minneapolis from Kuwait to stay a couple days, we’d hit up a Perkins and devour their mammoth muffins and pie.

We continued tradition in Knoxville, treating ourselves to a big breakfast...and peanut butter pie.

Because I'm on vacation. That's why.

Hey, it’s vacation.

We drove to the civic center to take their shuttle to the stadium. We were early, so we walked around and enjoyed the beautiful weather.

Once we got to the stadium we walked around and enjoyed the scenery, even with all the orange. smile

Their stadium is crazy steep, which always makes me a but nervous. It didn’t help when we watched an elderly man tumblr six rows from his seat!

Horrifying. Thank God he was ok, and I was more than fine not moving a single bit after we got settled.

The volunteer stadium is huge and seats over 100,000. The Vols were excited and came loud!

I still can’t get over how deafening it was. In fact, they broke a stadium sound record!

They played hard. For almost the entire game I thought we were a goner. Somehow, someway, sooner magic made its way on the field and the boys tied it up and sent it to overtime.

Two overtimes, in fact.

Talk about a nail biting victory!

What a game!

We won! 😱

WB ready for a sooner victory! OU takes Tennessee

We intended to quickly leave and get back to our car.

Only, no one tells you how long it takes to get out of the stadium, off the campus, and out of traffic.

Think about a city of 100k all making a mass exodus from a small space.

Chaos.

We left our stadium seats around 10:00 and didn’t even get back to our car from taking the shuttle until after midnight!

Then we had to drive to our hotel.

It was a long night and I’m sure glad we won!

Sunday, 13 Sept
Vacation officially ended this day.

What a bummer.

We flew out of Knoxville, so thankfully no two hour road trip back to Nashville. Off and away we went. We left early and were back home before noon.

And that was it!

Oh man we had such a wonderful vacation. It had been awhile since we’d taken a good trip like that, so we thoroughly enjoyed our getaway.

So there you have it! I needed to get this all down for posterity’s sake. We always look back years later and reminisce about little details on these trips, so I try my best to capture it all while it’s still somewhat fresh.

Thanks for indulging me.

A big, fat life update on the way soon. 💗💗

A Life Update and Blog Things

Happy September beauties!

I thought it was a good time to check in with an update.

What’s been going on? What have you been up to? Share! Share!

The last month was busy, but good.

Let’s start with the MOHs stuff
I got my stitches out a few days after my last post.

Stitches out! Happy girl

I continue to heal. My nose is super red and will be for a few more months probably, but I’m thankful it’s all done and behind me.

MOHs recovery continues

Moral of the story? Wear sunscreen!

Chances are, lots of damage is already done from our younger years, and it’s all the more reason to take care of ourselves now!

I already see a couple more spots I’m going to have checked at my next appointment. 😳🙏🏻
Now for some fun and exciting stuff
P and her beau set a date and are getting hitched in November.

They went from planning a stressful and large soirée to a much quieter, simpler wedding. I love they went this route and will be honored to be among the small group of people they entrust with this sacred moment.

As a side note, how is my sister old enough to be married!?

I’m sure I’ll share all sorts of beautiful pictures, stories, and such in the coming months.

Oh and PS- Layla started preschool last week! I can’t believe she’s already old enough to be going to preschool! Not gonna lie, I got misty eyed.

She gets cuter everyday

Now onto the important stuff
All things college football.

Last Wednesday kicked off football season. It’s like an official holiday in our house.

We flipped back and forth between games soaking up every tackle, touchdown, and catch.

Our beloved Sooners took the field Saturday, and as usual, I nearly melted into a giant puddle from the intense heat.

We had a fairly mild August, but just my luck, temps went back to normal as football season started.

WHY DO YOU HATE ME!?

Nonetheless I’m excited about a new year and fresh start. I’m not picking us to take it all, or probably even win the big 12, but I think we’ll be much improved a serious contender.

My boot camp & a bible study

Guys, God has blessed me so much with this boot camp bible study thing. I can’t even take it!

I started out with just one person attending- ME.

Just a couple weeks later I was up to two, then three, with two more committed for our next session.

Considering we meet Saturday at the crack of dawn, I’m encouraged.

I gave it totally to God when I started in July and continue to let Him do whatever he desires.

Our workouts have been fantastic, the Christian playlists I’ve put together are ridiculous (in the best way possible), and our conversation has been blessed.

God is good! I sure wish you gals could join us.

A stroll down memory lane

For some strange reason, Will and I decided to stick in an old Frasier box set in while I was at home after surgery.

Here we are a month later and are already nearly halfway done with season 2.

I’m pretty sure it’s Will’s favorite show. It got us through lots of homesick nights in Kuwait.

It’s been fun and I felt I ought to remember it on her blog.
Other random things I feel you should know

We visited Will’s parents last weekend along with my BIL and SIL. It was fun. We went bowling and I broke my average 35ish range.

Serious stuff here, ya’ll.
Proof.

(I’m BB- still the lowest score but far better than my usual)

As for other things, I did a mini balyage treatment on my hair last week. I wanted to go back to my natural color thinking it was going to be a fairly dark blonde.

Turns out I was completely wrong!

I’ve highlighted half my head for years and never really paid attention to the underneath color. It always looked dark to me because the highlights were always so light.
Blonde blonde and back to my roots

Anyway, turns out I’m naturally way blonder than I thought (an 8 on a scale of 10), which explains a lot.

Such as why, upon realizing we were out of dish tablets, I put a tablespoon of ivory dish soap in the dishwasher, hit start, and let it run the entire cycle.

Let’s just say there were bubbles everywhere.

Everywhere.

Or why I threw Lucy’s much needed medication in the trash not realizing there were still several days worth of medicine still in the packet.

Resulting in a dumpster dive situation.

Genius.

Things like that.

All.the.time.

So yeah, turns out I’m not blonder than I pay to be. I’m actually really that blonde. Ha!

Important Blog Stuff I Need to Unpack
On a more serious note, I’m kind of unsure what to do with this space, guys.

It’s old, dated, clunky and I have no idea how to fix any of it on my own.

Not only that, but I kind of feel like this space is slightly schizophrenic.

It’s worked well for a decade, housing all my silly stories and experiences as a 20 something newlywed. However, now I’m not so sure.

I feel the few of you who still visit should be able to count on some sort of structured content each day, which I feel I’ve done a great job of keeping up with over the last few years.

However I can’t help but feeling the Lord moving me in a different direction, which is one of the reasons I’ve been posting less frequently.

I feel there’s so much pressure for everyone to have some sort of online presence, or following, or persona.

I completely see the value of online media and have so enjoyed keeping up with my friends that way.

However in this current season of life I’m prompted to pull back more. To take the focus off myself and to put it on Jesus.

I’m struggling to find balance between posting what I had for lunch and sharing why I feel the Church needs to refocus our affections on our one true Love.

I’m struggling because this blog was created by me, for me, and doesn’t feel like it belongs to Him.

Sometimes it doesn’t feel right posting here anymore.

So I’ve been sitting quietly.

I’ve toyed with the idea of starting fresh and creating an entirely new space, but it feels daunting.

I’ve thought about paying for a makeover of the current space, but I’m not sold on that either for the above reasons.

So yeah, I have no idea what direction this little site is going.

I find it important to chronicle some of our goings on, as I’ve valued being able to capture memories over the years, but I’m not sure this space is the right space to cover heavy topics on my heart right now.

You’ve got my Wednesday workout right next to a post on eschatology. It seems a little incongruent.

Am I making sense?

It took me over 30 years but I finally get that this life is so much more and so much better when it’s surrendered to Christ.

That’s how our life should be, but somewhere between the garden of Eden and today we decided we could do things better on our own.

I don’t want to do things on my own anymore.

And He’s taking me up on the offer of my surrendered heart.

It’s glorious, but sometimes it hurts a little too.

But it’s worth it.

I want to share so much of it with you, but right now I’m taking a step back to see what exactly that looks like.

I had no intention of pouring this all before you, but since I’m on a roll I thought I better share.

I’m not breaking up with my blog, but I do think there will be some changes.

Perhaps I start a separate site with more frequent devotional type posts while still maintaining this old dinosaur for capturing updates and life stuff.

We shall see.

Until then, look for update type posts like this one (minus the whole giant book I wrote about the blog 😃) and devotional type posts.

So yeah. I think that’s my update.

Thanks for stopping by! Hope you had a good extended weekend!

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About

brittny I'm B-Love. Lover of God, my husband Will, my doggies, OU football, weight training, plyometrics, veganism (mostly!), peanut butter, and all things health related. Buckle up and get ready for my constant embarrassing moments, health and fitness tips,and my effort to rely on Christ while living life in the real world. Follow me on Feedly! Sign up for monthly emails at blove@theblovelife.com!


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