Why You Should Be Reading Christina Lauren.

Who is Christina Lauren? This is the same question I was asking myself a few months ago when my sister told me I needed to read the book The Unhoneymooners written by Christina Lauren.

Christina Lauren isn’t actually one person, it’s two! Writers, Christina Hobbs and Lauren Billings are two friends that decided to try to write together. This concept to me is a little mind blowing, I can’t even begin to imagine trying to write a story, let alone, books, with another person. To have the same writing voice, and vision, and thought process would be so difficult. But these two awesome ladies make it work, and make it work well!

I love to read and I’m finally getting back into the swing of regularly reading. I’ve always considered myself someone that keeps up with the latest literary writers and up and coming books. This one I’d definitely never heard of though. My sister is the queen of giving any good book cover a chance. (We both really prefer good ol “rom-com” books) I remember her telling me this is her favorite book cover, so I thought I’d better give it a shot.

I hadn’t read in ages and really wanted to get into a good book. So I downloaded (I know some of you are cringing) The Unhoneymooners on my Kindle and started reading. I was immediately drawn into the story. The Unhoneymooners is a story about the unluckiest girl, who has always been a bit in the shadows of her luckiest twin sister. Her fate starts to change when she goes on a fake honeymoon with her sworn enemy. What I loved most about this book was it’s humor! It had me rolling in spots, and cringing in others. What I really appreciated about the book was it had a few different layers to unfold to get the whole story. I loved this book! It kept me on my toes never wanting to put it down. It’s hilarious, it’s steamy, and it’s just a good story! Loving this led me to wanting to read more by this dynamic duo.

So, next up, Twice In A Blue Moon. I’ll admit, once I find a really good book I’m a little hesitant to get too enthusiastic about the author and so I read a second book with caution. When I started this one out, I was a little worried. It was slow starting and the characters just didn’t seem as good as the characters in The Unhoneymooners. With that said, once I reached a certain point in the book (one that wasn’t too far in) it was hard to put it down! It’s a story of a young love affair, the only catch is the girl is the daughter of the most famous actor in the world…but he has nothing to do with her. This story takes twists and turns I didn’t see coming, a really well told story when it’s all said and done. I couldn’t wait to get my hands on another, and I was not disappointed!

Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating might be the funniest book I’ve ever read. It had me literally laughing out loud throughout the book. It’s a book about two people who have a strange past history that meet again once they’re older and fall into becoming best friends. I couldn’t get enough of this book. I really love the characters in this one! It’s pretty steamy in places, and made me blush a few times, but the story itself is just as good as those rom-coms we all like to watch. I’d love to see this one turned into a movie.

So if I haven’t convinced you with these three book recommendations, then maybe we just aren’t the same kind of people?! Haha! But really, I can’t wait for their new book Honey-Don’t List to come out in March. Until then, who are you reading?

The Unhoneymooners 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Twice In A Blue Moon 🌝🌝🌝🌝

Josh & Hazel… 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Thanks for stopping by!

*ASpottedHeart

6 Ways of Staying Centered

Do you ever just feel…off? I know I certainly do at times. When things just don’t seem to be jiving right. When I just don’t feel like myself. It’s taken me several years to start being proactive about when I feel this way instead of just waiting for it to pass. Here are 6 things I do to center myself again.

Drink H2O

I know everyone says to drink water. But seriously, I’ve noticed when I’m feeling off or foggy headed if I drink a big glass of water it seems to really help. Sometimes I think I’m just a little dehydrated and that’s causing me to feel foggy-headed. Water helps support the cardiovascular system from getting dehydrated, therefore your heart isn’t having to do as much work if you’re staying good, and hydrated.

Write

In case you didn’t already know, I love to write. I don’t do it near as often as I’d like #momlife. But when I take the time to sit down and just write…man, it’s incredibly therapeutic.

Take your Vitamins

I have found when I keep up and stay on track with taking my daily vitamins, I not only physically feel better, but mentally feel more alert. Here’s what I’ve found works for me:

Bottled Sunshine by Truvani: Vitamin D to help maintain healthy bones by making calcium more easily absorbed in your body. It also helps regulate moods and fights depression.

Mary Ruth’s Vitamin C: Vitamin C provides a strong antioxidant and promotes white blood cells which is important in boosting immunity. Also helps fight memory loss.

Life 9 Probiotic by Young Living: Probiotics help with a healthy gut. So much depends on the condition of your gut, it’s amazing when you really delve into the research.

Get Some Air

This probably seems like an obvious one, but how many times have you seen or heard this and actually done it? Stepping out and getting a big breath of fresh air can boosts happiness and energize the mind and body.

Oil Up

As you well know, I’m an avid oiler, and I always have some kind of essential oil on hand. Aromatherapy has been used for centuries for mental and physical wellness. I’ve found a handful of oils that really “speak” to me and help me feel balanced and calm. These are a few of my favorites to use, all Young Living single or blended oils.

  • Northern Lights Black Spruce
  • Sacred Mountain
  • Frankincense
  • Tangerine
  • Cypress

Prayer

My number one, most important thing I can do when I feel off, is pray. A lot of times it turns more into a meditation of a verse in scripture or a couple lines of prayer I repeat over and over. But I’ve found the best thing I can do to help me feel balanced is to speak to the One who created me and knows my inner most being; mind, heart, and soul.

Those are my 6 tips to staying focused when everything seems a little out of focus. But I think what’s most important is to find what works best for you. What do you like to do to stay centered?

*ASpottedHeart

Momheart

Quite frankly, I could care less about football, so here I am folding laundry, watching my little guy sleep. This has been a week! Really in all aspects, but my role as Mom has especially been tested. We haven’t eaten as healthy as I’d have liked this week, which makes me cringe because I know the affects of not eating well. So, when bad sleep and emotional meltdowns happen, I can’t help but kick myself. But I’m gonna lay my momma heart open for you, what makes it worst is when I get irritated or lose my temper because of said meltdowns and lack of sleep. The guilt that follows is enough to make me want to do, no be, better.

Mom guilt has to be the worst form of guilt. I can’t help but think about things I’ve read, talking about how our children see and use how we respond and act to things, as a guideline for how they respond and act. You can’t help but ask the question, am I doing enough? Am I making the right choices for my child? Am I being a good example? It’s hard not to question every stage of Motherhood. But what I have learned is to lean into God and ask for guidance, patience, and reassurance in the things I do for my little bear (and really all things in life.) I don’t care how together the mom down the street seems-everyone has questions of what’s best for their child. At the end of the day what our kiddos really want, is us. I try to remember that after the 10th time he’s said, “Mama! Sit sit! Play!” Haha! But honestly, it’s time, Mama, to sit, and just play. In another 10 years he might not ask. I can physically feel my heart ache just thinking about it.

I guess my point is, keep doing the best you can do, whatever works for you and your family, lean into God, and don’t ever be too busy to sit and play.

Movie Review: Togo

Anyone that knows me well, knows I’ve got a heart for all animals, but I’m particular soft on the K-9 variety. I’m always pretty leery of movies about dogs because my heart can hardly handle any kind of heartbreak over one. Dogs resonate so deeply in my soul that to see harm to one is painful for me. With that said, when I signed up for Disney+, Togo was the first thing I saw when signing on. Growing up I can’t even tell you how many times I watched movies like White Fang, Iron Will, and Balto. When I saw what this movie was about, I knew it was one I was willing to watch, and am I ever glad that I did!

Togo was the real-life, lead sled dog of Leonhard Seppala. The movie is based on a true story about the 1925 diphtheria serum sled-run to Nome, Alaska. Growing up all I ever knew about it was what I’d learned and read about Balto, the sled dog. Though Balto was an incredible dog, Togo was unbelievable. When diphtheria threatened a small Alaskan village, their children especially, Seppala decided to make a sled run for the serum. In -30 temperature. The wind caused for a windchill of -85…I can’t even begin to imagine. They were one of 20 mushers (and over 100 dogs) that were part of the relay for the medicine. Why Togo stands out is he lead his pack for over 250 miles, while the other dogs averaged 30-40 miles. It’s a story of courage, loyalty, and the heart of a dog. It’ll make you laugh, it’ll make you tear up, and it’ll make you want to hug your furry friends tight. It’s an incredible story! Thank you Disney for putting this story out there, it’s a story worth being told.

The real Togo and Seppala

I definitely give it 5 popcorns!

🍿🍿🍿🍿🍿

*ASpottedHeart

Post-Christmas Blues

I know I know. Most of you are probably thinking, “Christmas?! We’re weeks past Christmas!” But this girl still misses that Christmas feeling. I’m thankful I married a man that likes to keep our live Christmas tree up usually through the month of a January. So I still have that little Christmas spirit lingering in my home. (And if you’re wondering, yes! I do still plug it in every evening.)

I miss the sparkling decorations and the cheerfulness that so many carry with them through the holiday season. The big build-up as I like to call it. I feel like in some way, with Thanksgiving being so late this year, we were some how cheated out of some of that Christmas cheer. I want to continue to watch Christmas movies and listen to Christmas music. Does anyone else experience a weird music slump this time of year? After Christmas it’s really hard for me to get into the groove of listening to anything else. I mean, I can’t go from Michael Buble’s “It’s Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas” to “You Need To Calm Down” on the radio! The only solution I’ve come up with is listening to The Family Stone soundtrack which is just the score. No lyrics, no blatantly obvious Christmas tunes, just a good movie score.

I also really notice how my focus shifts after Christmas. I want to have that focus on Jesus and His story the whole year through. That’s something I want to really work on this year. Staying in constant communion with Him.

I’m really just typing out my thoughts at the moment, and I’m still just kind in that Christmas blues fog. I’ll snap out of it soon, I’m sure, but right now I really just want to get my kindle out and finish that Christmas book I didn’t get finished in time. So maybe thats exactly what I’ll do. 😉

I want to make a point to pop-in on here more than I did this last year. I miss having this creative space. Also, I’ve started the year off with a couple of good books and movies already, would reviews be something you’d be interested in?! As always, I’d love to hear from you, and thanks for sticking around! ♥️

*ASpottedHeart*

Good Girl, Hershey

My heart aches. You were there when I would come home, happily waiting my arrival. You were there when we found out we were having Little Bear and as time grew closer and closer you wouldn’t leave my side. You were convinced that you could help in whenever the time came. You were there that first night we brought him home, and I was so scared and nervous, you calmed my nerves by never leaving. You were there when he started to crawl, his first Christmas, and started to walk and talk. You were so patient with Little Bear as he poked and “petted” and pulled your ears.

You loved and were loved so so deeply. You were so smart and so intuitive. You were our in-house doctor who always knew when a little love was needed. To say I’ll miss you doesn’t seem adequate enough. You were so much more than a dog and I thank God that he let us have you for a short while. You were a blessing to this little family that I’ll cherish forever. We love you Hershey, you were a good girl.

Faux Posts

Sorry folks, not really sure what happened, but several of my old drafts got posted earlier on accident, so you might have received an email if you’re on my updates list. I’m working on getting back here regularly! Thanks for hanging around!

*ASpottedHeart

Spring Vision

Y’all I love Spring! I feel like I say that about every season, and while I do love Fall and Winter, I do NOT love Summer, so I appreciate Spring, though it’s usually fleeting. I love planting flowers, and Spring showers. Not to mention just about my favorite holiday, Easter, is always in the Spring. And I just love the way Spring makes me feel (not counting the dad-gum allergies, that feeling I do not appreciate.) Maybe it’s because my precious baby boy was born in Spring, or because I married my Love in the Spring, whatever it is, it makes me feel warm.

Here’s a mood/vision/ inspiration board/post. ☺️ Hope you enjoy!

Hope it’s starting to green up to Spring wherever you are! What are your favorite parts of Spring? What do you find inspiring this time of year?

*ASpottedHeart

Motherhood

One thing I know for sure is Motherhood looks differently for every mother. But I also know that motherhood is the same for every mother, in the sense of, we’re all doing what we feel is best for our little ones.

For some it’s a rough road, for some it’s been as easy as pie, and for some it seems best a road untraveled. Whether God blessed you with your own, or He led you down the road to bring your baby home, we’re all mothers loving our blessings to the best of our abilities!

My entire life I’ve felt like my “big questionin life has been, “What is my purpose?” While I believe some people have such a vividly clear vision of their purpose, I believe some it comes later in life in several snapshots of time. For so long I thought my purpose was something in music, but no matter what I did or tried, I never could get a life in music to work for me. I finally realized music was only a blessing to me, not necessarily a purpose.

Motherhood took me by surprise when it felt so right. If you’ve been with me for awhile, you’ve probably read my post about how I never thought I’d want to be a part of motherhood, if you haven’t, you can find it here. So you can imagine what a pleasant surprise and blessing it has been to truly let God mold me into who He wants me to be and to fully give him the reigns. I definitely still struggle with trying to “take control” but it’s when I let go that He showed me my true purpose. Motherhood.

I wouldn’t change a single thing. Some days it’s so incredibly hard and you think you can only bend and bend until you just can’t anymore. At the end of those days, I just try to tell myself, tomorrow is a new day and I have a new chance to be better and do better. I try not to ever let those days spill into my next day. Then some days are so wonderful and fun and so incredibly rewarding. Seeing the world through new eyes as I watch my little bear learn and see new things. To hear his laugh and watch his eyes in little boy wonder. So many little joys fill their days, I can’t help but feel those joys too.

So just remember mama, we’re all in this together and we’re all “figuring it out.” So when you see another mama, give her an encouraging word, or look, or nod. A simple gesture could mean so much to that mama who’s been up since 5, with a baby clinging to her side, trying to get the mountain of dishes done, the load after load of laundry put away, and get food on the table. She may just need to feel understood and seen. Never underestimate your power as an emotional human being.

I never thought I’d be the person to spend so much time wrapped up in one title, but Motherhood is both a mystery and a place that feels like home. Thank God for mothers.

*ASpottedHeart

Cowboy Q&A

This is one of the first (of many) photos I took after One Cute Cowboy and I started dating. That grin *swoon* still gets me. I thought it might be fun to do a little Q&A with The Cowboy, himself! So here’s a few things to get to know One Cute Cowboy a little better. So I asked him the questions in bold and his answers are in the italics. Hope y’all enjoy this little Q&A!!

Horses or Cattle?

Cattle

Favorite color & breed of horse?

A dapple grey, Quarter-Horse

Black Angus or Red Angus Cattle?

Black

Herefords or Charlois?

Herefords, they make black baldies

Is it “Leggin’s” or “Chaps”?

Leggins

Is it a rope or lasso?

It’s a rope.

Favorite cut of meat?

Ribeye

Bumper-pull or Gooseneck?

Gooseneck, ’cause you can spin that sucker ’round.

How should it be cooked?

Medium, with lots of juice.

How do you like your potato cut?

French fries.

Favorite Silversmith?

Sam Jenkins.

Favorite leather-maker?

Good buddies, Rem Mosimann and Clay Jackson.

Our wedding gifts to one another, His a new pair of leggins, mine a new guitar strap. Both made by Rem Mosimann.

Favorite breed of dog?

Blue Heeler.

Favorite piece of tac?

Saddle.

Favorite type of saddle?

Seat Rig.

Favorite Cowboy hat?

American.

Straw or Felt hat?

Just depends on the season.

Favorite cold weather garment?

Kanaine Shop Pendleton Cowl.

Branding Season or Calving Season?

Branding

What did you want to be when you were little?

A farmer or rancher.

If you could live anywhere, where would you go?

The Nebraska Sandhills.

What’s your favorite western?

John Wayne’s The Cowboys.

If you weren’t a Cowboy, what would you be doing?

I have no idea. Hopefully something Ag related. (He thought long and hard about this too!)

Whats your favorite part of being a Cowboy?

Getting to work first-hand with God’s creation, daily.

Hope you’ve had a great weekend!

*ASpottedHeart