Quarantine Mother’s Day

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Mother’s Day is Sunday!  If we are honest, it is different this year.  For the past two months everything has been different.  When chatting with a momma recently, she told me that this year Mother’s Day is just another day. She said it was not going to be special because of everything going on.  HELLO, WHAT?!?  Yes, I agree that things are different and might not be the dream Mother’s Day you had envisioned with your children all gathered (well behaved all day), an amazing meal out, a day of pampering at the spa, time with other mommas to sip mimosas, and that special moment at church where you get to stand up and everyone claps because you are mom! Oh and then there might be that amazing photo op that was setup and your children dressed up with fresh haircuts and all smile with you at the camera.  Then you post that picture and say #BlessedMomma.  You are correct my friend, all that special will not be happening this Mother’s Day!  So do you want to wallow in that or Momma Up!  Put on Your Cute Momma Britches and Let’s know that we are honored and loved.

A few tips of my 14 ½ of being a momma:

  1.  My husband and children cannot read my mind.  I can get frustrated or I can just say “you know I would like….”  This is what I did.  I love having brunch out on Mother’s Day.  I have already done the research and set my guys up for success.  I told them the place that is offering takeout brunch and when they need to have it ordered.  This year’s pick is: Little Rey’s. I’m already craving their breakfast tacos.  I also know I want something sweet so I have an order in to A Piece of Cake.  There is no shame in picking our your own cupcakes. 
  2. I know I will not be having a pampering day at the spa this year.  That’s ok!  I have learned during this time that just having a little time to myself goes a LONG way.  Again, I told my hubby that I would like to get out of the house.  You can take a walk or a drive.  Listen to your favorite podcast, read a book, or just listen to silence.
  3. Rediscover yourself.  IS there something you have been wanting to try?  Paint by number, baking, growing your own herbs, or playing the ukulele.  This is a great time to do this.  Tell your family that you want this for Mother’s Day.  You might need to send the links from Amazon but who cares.  You are getting what you want.  
  4. Don’t be a brat on Mother’s Day!  This is not the year to pull this.  Everyone is doing the best they can.   Your family wants to celebrate with you. You don’t want them to remember the year that mom pouted because she didn’t get the day she wanted.  

Proverbs 31:28 says “Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her.”  Right there.  Proverbs 31:28 is the momma that I want my husband and children to find.  I want my heart and mind to focus on Jesus on Mother’s Day.  I want my family to see that I feel honored that I was chosen for them.  

Let’s Momma Up this year!  You can have your Mimosa.  (I have a recipe coming!)  Use your voice.  Focus your heart and mind on Jesus.  You got this.

Love You Mommas!

Amanda 

Last year’s Mother’s Day post looked a little different! 🙂

I Needed a Social Media Fast and I’m Back

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It’s hard for me to come back after a long break.  I don’t consider this a bad thing. Almost every vacation I have ever taken, I begin to get sad the last couple days.  I begin to feel that I don’t want the time off to end. My mind begins to plan the next break or get away. There is joy and rest in a break.  

Over the past seven weeks, I gave myself a break.  I pulled the cord on social media. My Social Media Fast began the weekend before Thanksgiving and was intended to last until the first part of January.  

I knew I needed this fast for so many reasons. 

  1. I needed to stop scrolling.  There would be times I would find myself scrolling through picture after picture.  Looking at these squares before me and paying no attention to the actual faces and conversations happening right in front of me.  I was using social media as an escape, as a filler, and as a source of recharging. As I pulled myself from the scrolling, I realized how much unnecessary time I spent on social media.  Not only was I scrolling through the pictures, I was scrolling through the comments and the links and clicking on other’s profiles to figure out how I knew them. These investigations would lead me into multiple hours a day on social media.  I had to ask myself, FOR WHAT? 

 

  1. I needed to focus on the season.  I timed my social media fast during the busiest, craziest time of the year.  My fast began the Sunday before Thanksgiving and ended after the New Year. This year was going to be different.  While preparing for a Bible study, I was reading about the birth of Jesus. It became so clear that no one in that story was in a hurry except the shepherds.  In Luke 2:15-16, after the angel told the shepherds that Jesus had arrived, they hurried off to find Him. This really struck me. What if that is what I was hurrying towards  this season? Just hurrying for Jesus. Unplugging from social media, made me realize the free time I actually had. I spent more time reading my Bible and devotions, listening to podcasts, and playing worship music in my house.  I committed each day to be a day that I would hurry towards Jesus. This time was full of lows and highs but there was such a peacefulness knowing that each day I had handed it over to God.  

 

  1. I needed to reevaluate why I do what I do and WHO I’m doing it for.  I started my blog about nine years ago. Sing and Dance in the Kitchen was a place for me to share my recipes with family and friends.  Simple as that. Facebook was something I used to stay in contact with everyone since we moved around so much. I would post pictures from the weekend to share with out of town grandparents.   On my blog I would share the latest creation I had whipped up in my kitchen. Within the past few years, Instagram and blogging have grown. It seems like so many are using Instagram to share their stories and their lives.  Very quickly, I was coached that I needed to push my Instagram more. I needed to post more pictures and push for the likes. Quickly I learned if I was not going to continue to engage on Instagram, I would lose followers and connections.  There are goals, algorithms, leverage, hashtags, giveaways, geotags, and the list goes on of things you need to focus on to have a social media account that is worthy to be considered. This all started making my head spin because my heart just wanted to share a piece of my world with others.  

This fast was the perfect time for me to ask myself these questions, 

“Why am I posting this?” 

“Who am I posting this for?” 

“Who’s approval am I seeking?”  

“What’s my motive?” 

During my social media fast, there was no posting, no scrolling, no seeking approval, no comparison, no thinking behind posts, no second guessing comments or wondering why I was not included or invited.  I was not ON to be part of any of it. It was so freeing. It gave me true rest and peace. In mid December, God made it so clear to me. It was like He was sitting right there on the couch with me and I was reflecting.  I’m His Daughter (2 Corinthians 6:18). There is no one’s approval that is needed besides His. As much as I love my husband and children, their approval does not have comparison to God’s. My family and friends are wonderful and support me in so many ways but they are human and will let me down. Their approval will not hold a tiny spark to what Jesus holds for me.  

It became so clear that my small, little platform of whatever I want to call it can only and will only be based to point to Jesus.  Jesus wants to use my love of hosting, cooking, baking, gathering, telling long stories, building up mommas, encouraging others wives, find deals, punching boxing bags, crazy dancing, and off pitch singing for HIS GLORY!  He wants everything that makes Amanda be Amanda to point to HIM! (all the feels and chills as I write this)

 

So, as I dip my toes back in to this year of 2020 and all that God has in store, I want you to know that my social media fast was one that changed my trajectory for Sing and Dance in the Kitchen.  I’m so honored and humbled that you are part of this journey with me. Thanks for hanging on and waiting on the other side.

 

Looking Forward!

Amanda

 

The Garden, The Curtain, and The Cross

Here in Atlanta, trees are beginning to bud, daffodils are blooming, and every one is beginning to complain about their allergies.  Yes, Spring is on its way.  I love watching all of God’s creativity show this time of year.  The incredible colors and breathtaking views of a new season get me excited.

With Spring on the way, We know EASTER is almost here.  We will put bunnies, eggs, and baskets in our decorations.  We will make plans for a perfect Easter dinner with family and friends.  We determine the best Easter Egg Hunt to take our children to.  We coordinate our family’s wardrobe to make sure we look our best on Easter Sunday. And we shop for the perfect items for our children’s Easter baskets.  We will talk about the Easter story and why we have a Good Friday and Easter Sunday.  But for many years, I felt that my children needed to know the Easter story but maybe I would leave out parts because they were not ready.  I felt maybe saying “Jesus died on Good Friday” was a little too much for my preschooler.  I would do the “Good Christian Mom Thing” and make sure there was a Bible story in their baskets along with chocolates and prizes.  We went to Easter Sunday Service and at Easter Dinner our prayers thanked God for sending Jesus to save us.  I felt good about what I was doing and then….

It was so clear the day I realized I had been watering down Jesus to my children.  I had not been talking about how we were sinners and God sent his only Son to Earth to ultimately die for us.  My words never said because of Jesus we have hope.  Easter was about Jesus to us but not letting them know how it is only about Jesus was my conviction. I would teach them that Jesus taught us how to live, love, and obey God.  I guess I didn’t want to scare my preschooler.  I didn’t want them to worry about death and how Jesus was beaten and hung on a cross for them.  But why?  It is the story they need to know more than any other story out there.

Don’t get me wrong.  I love to decorate with all the beautiful eggs, sweet bunnies, and monogrammed baskets. I will create yummy Easter treats and attend a fun Easter Egg hunt.  However, I am clear the whole purpose of Easter is to celebrate Jesus.  It all points to Jesus and what He did for us.

Recently I found the best book for children.  The Garden, The Curtain and The Cross is beautifully illustrated,  Biblically accurate, and captures your child’s attention. The book begins with God’s creation of The Garden of Eden.  Quickly we learn about how our sins keep us from living in a perfect garden with God.  We had a true separation from God. But God had a wonderful plan.  He sent His son, Jesus, to come live on Earth and die for us.  After Jesus had died on the cross, He was placed a in tomb guarded by soldiers.  But spoiler alert:  On the third day, the tomb was empty!  Jesus arose!  He conquered the grave.

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As a mom, I want to make sure that I am representing the truth of Jesus to my children. We read from the Bible on many nights.  When we read other Bible stories that are not out of our Bible, I want to make sure they are telling the true, Biblical story.

The Good Book Company has published this wonderful book and so many more.  The talented Carl Laferton and Catalina Echeverri made this book come to life.  I encourage you to check out their other books.  I hope to feature more soon.

And now……

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I am so excited to announce my FIRST giveaway!  The great people over at Good Book Company have given me FIVE copies to giveaway to those who follow Sing and Dance in the Kitchen blog, Instagram & Facebook.

Here’s how to enter:

  1. Follow this blog.  Follow Sing and Dance in the Kitchen on Instagram and Facebook.
  2. Comment on this blog and tell me what you love about Sing and Dance in the Kitchen and what you would like to see more posts about.
  3. Tag at least 3 friends in the comments of Instagram and Facebook.  Make sure they begin to follow and you will get extra entries.
  4. Winners will be selected at random and will be announced on Friday, 3/9.  Good Luck!