New Year, New Goals

Happy New Year, everyone!

I hope your holidays were full of fun, love, and peace these past couple of months. I have been quite busy myself with work and the holidays, but it is nice to take a moment just to sit and think.

Like many other people, the year of 2016 has been a pretty crazy one for me. I had a stressful time with school, I struggled with food, and I was overcoming some insecurities. To top it off, this year was pretty crazy with the national election and not really knowing how to process many of the things done and said by people close to me.

However, there have been many good things that have happened this year. I graduated college with my Bachelor’s of Science, Mr. Yell and I have started new camping adventures and rescued a cat, and I started a new job which I love. Personally, I have overcome many fears and issues that developed in my heart and mind, and overcoming those alone are enough for me to celebrate this year.

With all that being said, I have been trying to think of a new “Word of the Year” for 2017. If you have been following me for a little while, you know that last year my word was “Kind”. I wanted desperately to work on being kind to myself and to others. I believe that over the course of the year I was stretched in this area in many ways and that having the simple mantra of “kindness” helped me to remember my goal for the year.

This year there are so many things I want to accomplish. I want to love more, learn valuable skills at my job, be warm and encouraging, and I want to be content with life. After thinking about the things I hope to accomplish in 2017, the word “Peace” has been laid on my heart.

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I need to find peace in the busy moments.

I need to seek peace in times of anger or sadness.

I need to have peace with what I am doing and how I am able to do it at a point in time.

Peace is what I need to seek.

After about a week of praying and thinking, I am learning that this type of peace comes from wisdom. A righteous, pure, wisdom is what brings true peace.

James 3:13-18

13 Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. 14 But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth.15 Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. 16 For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.

17 But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving,considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.18 Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.

I hope you will join me this year as I yearn to remember peace in my life and peace in my relationships with others. I hope that I can live by the wisdom the Lord gives. I pray that the simple word of “peace” will bring to mind what wisdom looks like for this upcoming year.

Bring it on 2017, I am ready for ya.

Much love. Much grace.

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Married Christmas

I am loving this Christmas season! I mean I do every year, so that isn’t much of a surprise. I just really love the holidays. I love the decorations, the food, and all the joy. Around Thanksgiving and Christmas, I feel like the joy is just contagious and people can’t help but to feel a bit of happiness.

This Christmas marks Mr. Yell and I’s second holiday season as a family and it has already been such fun! Yes; the holidays are always stressful trying to figure out whose house to go to and what times we need to see everyone; but this year has still been wonderful. This year we decided to dive into the Christmas spirit by making some new Yell family traditions. Making these traditions has been one of my favorite parts of being a “newlywed”. By making these fun little things to do each year, we feel like we are becoming more like our own little family and it literally makes me giggle with excitement!

It’s been an interesting process trying to find things we want to carry over from our own families into our new one. My family has several traditions that I have enjoyed putting into Mr. Yell and mine’s holidays; and Zach has some new ones he has invented for us to do.

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Decorating for Christmas

Mr. Yell and I started decorating the Saturday right after Thanksgiving. We put up Christmas lights, decorated our (live!) Christmas tree, and decorated the kitchen with cute little towels and other little Christmas things. It has been such fun getting to decorate together in our new home and it looks so cozy now! We even managed to get Mru, our cat, a little stocking for Christmas this year. Too cute, right? 😉

12 Dates of Christmas

This year we each created 6 different dates and put them into envelopes. Each day that we open an envelope, we get a surprise date that is Christmas themed. It has been such fun so far! Some of our dates have included: driving to see Christmas lights, getting hot chocolate from Starbucks, and …

Christmas Party

For the past couple of years Mr. Yell and I have hosted a small Christmas party in our home. It is a fun time of sharing Christmas cheer and just spending time with friends before the holidays. It also helps me get some good practice on making Christmas goodies and deserts!

I hope this Christmas season fills you with warmth and love and joy.

Much love. Much grace.

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How Interviewing for Jobs Helped Me Gain Confidence

It’s hard out there, guys. I mean I’ve read articles and studies and a bunch of other stuff about how hard it is to get a job out there in the “real world”, especially for Millennials just graduating from college. (I mean, a graduate needs a four-year degree and five years of experience for an entry level job now… Literally impossible.) It’s pretty brutal. It’s less brutal if you know what you want to do with your life and you have the ability to relocate, but still very tough to beat out people for a job and not just huddle in a corner and cry. #realLife

It’s been nine months since I graduated with my BS degree and for about four months I was actively looking for a job. I now have a job that I am really enjoying, but the job search took a bit of a toll on my self-esteem and confidence there for a bit. However, this experience has been enlightening and encouraging in many different ways.

Now, in November of last year I talked about some of the fears I had and that I was still working on overcoming them. This experience has helped speed along that process in a major way, really getting down to the grit of specific fears I have.

Fear of Judgement

I hate knowing that people are constantly making first impressions of others and the idea of taking tests to determine my knowledge or skill at something makes my stomach hurt. I hate being judged. I hate being put on a number scale to determine my worth, because to me I don’t believe it is an accurate depiction of who I am.

Imperfection

I want to be good at everything; and by that I mean that I want to do everything perfectly. If I am doing something I want every detail to be aligned and displayed in a creative and fun way, and if it isn’t I tend to beat myself up about it.

Not Being Enough

It was hard going into job interviews and not getting a job.  I had flaws that the future employer could not overcome, so they choose someone else. Mostly those flaws were experience related, but it’s very hard not to take each rejection personally.

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After each rejection, I noticed that my fears began to shrink. After each rejection I would grieve for a moment but then I would try to prepare for the next interview. Then, I started to list out good qualities about my professional self and memorizing them for interviews. I even carried them around on a piece of paper at one point so I could add more when I thought of them. I also started asking others what good qualities they saw in me so that I could add them to the list to tell future employers. This strategy helped me not just get a job, but be confident in my new stage of adulting. The career stage.

So, if you are out there searching and trying and maybe crying a little during a job search, just know you have many qualities to offer. So many, that I bet you could make a long list of them. 😉

Much love. Much grace.

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Heartache and Heartbreak 

​The election is over. After a year and a half, America has decided that the best person for POTUS is Trump. 

I cried last night.

I cried this morning.

 I cried when I got home from work. 

 Not just because Trump has said horrible things about Muslims, Mexicans, or women; but because this is the person people wanted to hold the highest title in our country. 

My heart aches. My mind, body, and soul are heavy and burdened. 

People want this. So many people. And not just any people… but my people. People I love.  People who taught me right from wrong. People who told me to be kind, compassionate, and to love others, no matter what. These people have actively chosen a man who defies each of these qualities.

 At a time such as this. .. it feels so hopeless. Our country struggles with hating so many people. How can we heal? Are there any people who actually want to heal? People who desire to love? It feels like there aren’t.  It feels like hope is gone. 

But you know what? It’s not. There ARE people who are kind and loving and who actually follow Christ. There ARE people who once finished grieving,  will get up and fight for what is right. There ARE people who will fight for equal pay and rights for all. I know this because there are so many of you who feel the weight of this decision as I do. You know that hate and fear don’t win in the very end, and that love has already trumped hate. You know that while the world seems so dark and full of spite,  there are some willing to carry on and sweat for progress. 

Today is yours.  Tomorrow will be too. It’s okay to cry. It’s okay to turn off your phone to journal, do yoga, and just shed tears for what has happened. These next few days are yours to work with… to process how this happened and why. Take some time think through it all, and know you aren’t alone. There are many who feel the same.  For now my sweet friends, feel the heartbreak and work through your thoughts; for when you reach the end of grief, our work towards a better future truly begins. 
Much love. Much grace

Exciting New Chapters

Hello everyone! It sure has been a while since I have updated. I have been making some new life adjustments these past few months and finally have time to take a breath!

Since May, several new things have happened and today I am so excited to share them with you!

We moved

Yes we moved! But only across town to a new apartment. If you follow me on Instagram you know how much I am loving our new place. Our old apartment was the perfect size for us, but it was very old. There wasn’t any central heating or air conditioning, only window units that barely worked and were tough on our electric bill. Since we live in Louisiana, central A/C is a must have… or at least having semi-working window units. 😉  So we took the opportunity to look for new apartments when our lease ran out and found a great apartment with great A/C and lots of big windows. I am loving this new place since it feels less dark with the sunlight able to come into our home, and this new apartment also allows pets! So that meant we had to get one….

 We rescued a cat

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Our newest addition: Mruczec! (pronounced Mroo-check)

After being in our apartment for about a month and a half, Mr. Yell and I just couldn’t take it anymore. We just had to get a cat. So I looked online and found a great website that helps people find the pet they want using shelters. We found our cute kitty online and then drove 3 hours to pick him up from a shelter. Originally , we wanted to wait a while before getting a pet, but when I found our cat online we couldn’t wait any longer. I mean, how could you not take this sweet kitty home?! He’s just perfect!

I got a job

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My first day teaching at ELS

That’s right, friends! I am officially a working woman! I am now a part-time teacher at an ELS Center teaching English as a language to those who don’t use it as a first language. After graduating I spent some time recovering from school and then set out to look for jobs. After a few months I finally found a job I was really excited about as well as co-workers and a boss that are just too amazing for words. I have really been challenged in this different area of teaching and the fast pace, but I am starting to get the hang of it and am excited for this incredible opportunity!

I have missed all of you and have really missed blogging. I am super excited to get back to business by uploading posts more consistently and I have quite a few new posts ready to be shared with you!

Much love.  Much grace.

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