Frugal Living/ Budgeting, General, Ways to be More Content

16 and Pregnant….Let’s Get Real Here

 

16 and Pregnant   Okay, I must admit, I love to watch Teen Mom 2 (and Teen Mom OG) on MTV. It’s pretty engrossing to watch other peoples’ lives, I think that’s why those cheesy reality shows do so well. We all love to see what other people do. But let’s get real here, all those “reality” shows aren’t really that “real”. I mean, nobody really lives like the Kardashians, unless they are the Kardaashians.

The Teen Mom shows, the follow up to the original 16 and Pregnant show, follow moms who were teenagers when they had their babies. It airs on MTV and is a huge hit. We fans love watching those babies grow up and seeing their moms succeed (yay!) and we feel their pain when they do not. We cheer them on as they navigate their lives in the right direction, find new love, have more sweet babies, find their way in this thing called life. I smile as I watch Chelsea being truly loved and finding happiness. I am proud of Leah as she shows her girls she can be strong and independent. I love that Kailyn is so fierce in her love for her boys.

For me, I have a much more personal reason for watching this series, as I myself was 16 and pregnant once upon a time (23 years ago). I was that teen mom, navigating growing up myself, balancing a marriage, and trying to be a good mom and make good choices. I look back and I am proud and happy with my life. I am married to my baby daddy (23 years in December), I have my own business, and I work as a nurse. My daughter is married and doing wonderful, and my son, my youngest, just graduated high school in May.

But saying all this, let me take you back to when I first began my  journey. My husband worked full time, our daughter was born 9 weeks early and was in and out of the hospital (2 1/2 hours from home) for her first few years. We really struggled financially, my parents really stepped in and helped us a lot. I didn’t finish high school (got my GED before she was born) and missed a lot of “teen” things. We were broke, our kids didn’t get vacations, they got second hand clothes many times, we didn’t get to go out to dinner much. Am I painting a picture that is shown on the show? Nope, not at all. I wasn’t being paid to be on a TV show. And neither are most teen moms. The majority of teen moms live in poverty, they receive welfare benefits and never finish college (many not even high school). That’s a much different picture, now isn’t it? Yep. That’s the reality of teen pregnancy.

I am writing this to say, what we see on TV (not just that show, but all of them) is just not real. We live normal, everyday lives that aren’t scripted, they aren’t filmed and edited. But our teens need to know that when they have a baby at 16 (or in their teenage years) it won’t be like on the show. No big new houses, no expensive SUVs, no fancy island vacations, no designer clothes, nope. It’ll be much, much different. It can still be awesome, just with less stuff and much more work. And college will be a struggle all the way. You’ll be studying, wishing you had more time with your kids.

So, go forth and watch your favorite reality show! Just know that real life is what “reality” really is. No editing things out, no big paycheck, no makeup and special lighting, just the real deal. And it can be ugly, it can be painful, and it can stink sometimes, but it’s real.

I hope all are having a blessed Monday! I hope you have a marvelous week ahead! Summer is winding down, the kiddos are all back in school, we are all looking forward to fall around here! God bless y’all!

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Ways to be More Content

Bible Verses for Creating an Attitude of Gratitude

Creating an environment where a grateful heart can thrive.

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  Living in a world where being grateful seems to be a way of the past makes me sad.  I strive daily to be thankful for everything God has blessed me with, and the list is certainly abundant!

   Here I am going to share some awesome Bible verses for a grateful heart. I’m starting with my life verse, the verse I’ve chosen to live by, and it’s just a wonderful verse.

   7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. 8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. 1st Tim 6: 7,8 KJV

   Simply put, you were born with nothing, you’ll take nothing into eternity with you, as long as you’re fed and clothed, be happy! I love this! Now days people complain about not having the silliest things, ugh! Other people are praying for what you have, silly! Be grateful!

  The next one is good for those with the “wants”, you know the type, always wanting something new and shiny.

   11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am in, therewith to be content. Phil 4:11 KJV

   There’s that word again: content. I think God’s trying to tell us to be grateful with what He gives us.

   Oh, now here’s a good one! If this doesn’t give you peace and comfort…. well it just should!

   12 As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us. Psalm 103:12

   Wow! When we just ask God to forgive us, He removes our sin as far as the east is from the west (never ending!) and remembers it no more. That should make you very grateful (especially if you’re like me and have to ask many, many, many times for the same darn thing!). That kind of forgiveness my friends, is like none other on Earth. I mean, come on, I’ll forgive you….but…..I kinda sorta tuck it away and remember it forever and always (sorry!). That’s human nature, we cannot forgive the way our Heavenly Father does, no way. He loves us like no other.

   And finally- the last- but certainly not least, being thankful!

   6 Be careful for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be known unto God. 7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Phil 4:6,7

   Always be thankful! God blesses us so richly,  and not a one of us are truly worthy of the sacrifice He made just for us.

   I hope all have a very Blessed week ahead! I am thankful for all who visit with me here, I’d love to hear from you! God Bless!

 

Eating Real Food, Frugal Living/ Budgeting, Homesteading, Ways to be More Content

Spring Around the Homestead

  Spring is here! This is a busy time around the homestead, getting ready for gardens and harvesting, new baby animals and weather too darn pretty to be indoors!

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  We’ve been bottle feeding a few calves, breaking up the garden, planting a few things, burning out the fence rows, and just generally being outdoors enjoying the weather.

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I painted these cute rocks for my potted herb plants. I also made some for my garden, for when all the plants go in. I just painted the rocks, used a fat Sharpie to write on them, then added a coat of spray on clear sealer. I loved quick simple projects that turn out cute!

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Here are my two bottle babies! These guys are cute, and I do love caring for them, but I know that come fall, one of them will be feeding my family. Growing your own food can be hard, but knowing what goes into what you eat is an awesome feeling too.

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Here’s my son, burning off sections of the fence row. We do this to keep the fences cleaned up, and to reduce ticks and fleas. The fields get burned off too. It just gets rid of the old/dead stuff and makes the grass come back fresh and green. When this gets done we are careful to watch the weather (no wind!) and usually burn off after a good rain, when things are dried out, but not too dry. And of coarse, always having some water nearby.

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I hope all are having a fabulous Saturday! The weather is beautiful here, and I’m fixing to head out and work on my chicken coop!

What are ways you get ready for spring? I’d love to hear back from you! I’ll be in the jam making mode in a few weeks, as strawberries are starting to come off. Stay tuned for a jam-session!

 

 

Family Vacations, Frugal Living/ Budgeting, Ways to be More Content

Hiking to Hawk’s Bill Crag

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  Isn’t that just breathtaking? This place was so beautiful, I decided it needed it’s own post here on my blog!

   See those tiny dark specks at the edge of the rock? Yeah, well that’s my son and a friend of his.  I tagged along on this hike, because Hawk’s Bill Crag was on my bucket list.

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 Here’s my son, Nicholas, overlooking the valley below. This rock is not Hawk’s Bill (also known as Whitaker Point)  but a smaller rock along the trail. there are many beautiful rock formations along the way.

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  Here is another pic of my son, sitting exactly where they tell you not to! And I am holding my camera, a ways off, yelling “Back up! You’re not supposed to go that far out!” like the worry-wart momma that I am. He and his friend find this amusing and are yelling back “Get good pics!”.  So I am hurriedly snapping photos yelling, “Okay, got them, now get back!”

   All teasing aside, the websites say it is not safe to go to the tip (the lower dip just where my son is sitting here) so please follow that, not the whim of teenage boys! I myself didn’t go anywhere near the edge, I am so afraid of heights. I wasn’t even going to venture out to the crag, but my son insisted I conquer my fear and go. I did and it felt great, even from my way far back vantage point. And my son took photos to prove it.

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That’s me there, the one further away from the edge! It was such a rush looking out over all that beautiful nature. I was in awe.

   Now we went towards the end of winter, which was nice weather wise, but not scenery wise. Albeit still gorgeous, I know colors would’ve been amazing in spring or fall. I plan to return this fall to see it again, when my daughter and son-in-law can go, and maybe I’ll talk my hubby into it to. He’s not much of a hiker, but for this view he might go along.

   I’m going to share links to the Harrison Web page, which has good information about getting to Whitaker Point trail head. I’m also sharing the link to Roadtrippers, which has some reviews as well as some pictures.

http://www.harrisonarkansas.org/c_upe_view.php?id=77

https://roadtrippers.com/us/boxley-ar/nature/whitaker-point-hawksbill-crag

   A few tips from me to you:

1. There are no bathrooms at the trail head, so plan accordingly. I was assuming there was at least a camp-type potty, so I drank a ton of water and coffee, oops!

2. The road is like a “pig trail”, not much of a road and pretty steep, rough, and narrow.

3. The trail is steep, so if you’re like me and a bit outta shape, you may need to stop for breaks along the way. No worries though, there are lots of awesome scenic spots you’ll want to stop and look at anyways.

 I live in rural Arkansas and am always looking for new places to go and see within my area. Go out and explore where you live! Or if you’re visiting Arkansas, look at the state park websites, there are so many awesome places to go and see! These type of activities are not only fun, but frugal as well. And what a great therapy to boot!

   Happy Hiking!! God Bless Y’all!

Ways to be More Content

Ways to Feel More Content- 7 Bible Verses on Contentment

So this time of year has many with a case of the “I want”s, and it should be just the opposite!! We are heading into the time of year we celebrate the birth of our Risen Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave His life so that we may have eternal salvation!  The greatest Christmas gift in all time!

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So here are my favorite 7 Bible verses on contentment:

1. That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. Romans 10:9 KJV

This one verse is Gods’ promise that all we must do to be saved is to confess our faith that Jesus died for our sins and he has risen from the tomb just for us and we are saved. Wow, and so many people try to make it harder than that. We can be scoundrels and God still wants our soul in heaven for all eternity. That makes me one content gal!

2. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. 1st Timothy 6: 7,8 KJV

This is what I call my life verse, meaning it is the verse I have found and chosen as what I will commit to follow. I believe that the heart of what we all seek is to be content. We must decide to have a heart full of forgiveness and love or we will remain seeking to be content rather than being content.

3. No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or he will hold to the one and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Matthew 6:24 KJV

This means stop trying to live for the next big trend and start living simply for God. Mammon can be translated to “money”, money is not the root of all evil, the LOVE of money is the root of all evil. People do crazy things for money, but still end up just as miserable. Be content with what you are given.

4. As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us. Psalm 103: 12 KJV

God has forgotten all those sins you continue to worry about long after you’ve asked Him to forgive you. As far as He is concerned they are so far removed, they no longer exist. Now imagine if we all forgave that way? What a better place the world would be. He loves us like no other. I am more content knowing that He forgives me and loves me no matter how awful I am (or how awful the things I think are!)

5. Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for He hath said, I WILL NEVER LEAVE THEE, NOR FORSAKE THEE. Hebrews 13: 5 KJV

Simply put, God will provide! Sometimes in life, I have wondered where money will come from when something comes up and we are broke, but then in some weird way, we have the money. Now I don’t mean sit at home and wait for the Lord to pay your electric bill, because he does like you to work for what you have, but He will provide for you. Being content with what you already have yields more than having the “wants” all the time.

6. Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. Philippians 4:11 KJV

Nuff said!! I really like this one- short and to the point! Be content always!

7. Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. Hebrews 13: 8 KJV

This is so great to know!! The Lord hasn’t changed just because this crazy old world has, he loves us sinners just as he did back in King Davids’ time. If you don’t know Jesus as your Lord and Savior, I beg you to ask Him into your heart. Like the song says, “It’s too late when we die,”. Heaven is most certainly for real and God wants you there one day.

I hope all have a very Blessed rest of your week!!