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A Peek Into Our Lives This Past Week (+ an update on my goals for 2018)

Welcome to my weekly post I share a peek into our lives, talk about things I’m loving, share links to interesting articles or helpful ideas I’ve collected throughout the past week, and just talk about whatever is on my heart! 🙂

This time last week, we were enjoying our last day in South Africa. We had such an amazing trip and I have at least 7 posts I’m planning to write in the next two weeks sharing about our time there! 

We miss our friends there, but are so grateful for the wonderful time we had and we are just incredibly thankful for the work they are doing there and the opportunity we have to be closely involved and support that work — even though we are halfway around the world!

Our kids had such a fun time and I loved getting to watch them interact with so many different people from different backgrounds as we visited various centers and communities — and also enjoyed fun times with the team from Take Action Ministry, including a getaway at a bush lodge!

I have to say that I am also really missing Rooibos Cappuccinos and I am determined to figure out how to make them like they make them there! Because they are so good!

We flew home Sunday evening/Monday. We were on the plane for 19 hours because of some delays and even though I have done this (or a similar) flight 8 times in the last 4 years, this particular flight was especially hard for me and I was miserable and sick the first 6 hours.

Gratefully, they landed in West Africa to refuel and were on the ground for an hour and a half. My stomach quelled, the Dramamine finally started working, and I was able to get some rest once we took off again. And it was a good thing because we still had about 12 hours to go!

We flew in DC and stayed in DC for a day because it was cheaper to do it this way and because it meant we had a day to kind of chill out in a hotel room — which ended up making the transition back home much smoother!

We hit the ground running when we got home on Tuesday afternoon. I have a trip to Kansas this week, our family has a trip to Arkansas the following week, and then I leave for India right after we come home. So we had a lot of appointments and meetings and projects and to-do’s to pack into this week, including getting uniforms for the kids for school (they start school when I’m in India, so I’m trying to make sure everything is taken care of now!)

Fun surprise: I found out that my book, Money-Making Mom, got translated into Chinese!

On Thursday, we had a photo shoot for some various upcoming projects and launches — including my podcast that I’m launching in September!!

I have no idea what on earth I’m saying here!

My friend, Melissa, was the photographer and she took close to 700 pictures in the span of a few hours in multiple locations with multiple hair and clothing changes.

A big thank you to Melissa, Chrissy, Ryan, Jesse, Brian, and Lauren who all helped to pull off this photoshoot. It takes a village to do these kinds of things and I feel like I have just about the best village ever that I get to work with!

Another exciting thing that is happening at our house right now — my office in the basement is getting finished off! This is the room where we plan to record podcasts, shoot course videos, record audio and video for other projects, host online webinars and classes, have team meetings, and get lots of work and projects done. We’ve had fun envisioning a workspace that will bring me life and allow us to do all of those things well! I can’t wait to show you the finished product!

On Saturday evening, we celebrated Lauren’s birthday in downtown Nashville (our husbands came, too, but we didn’t ever get a group picture!). We ate at an amazing Indian restaurant and then went to this rooftop bar. It was a lot more loud and crowded than we had hoped, but we found a quieter spot to talk and be able to look out at the fantastic views of the city at night!

From My Heart…

For the longest time, the words that I believed about myself were, “Not enough.”

I had believed this lie long enough that it became my truth.

I believed I wasn’t good enough for friendship, so that’s why I didn’t have any close friends. I became a world class people pleaser — and I spent years agonizing over whether people approved of me and working hard to win and keep approval.

I believed I wasn’t good enough when it came to school, so I tried to prove myself by becoming a workaholic and building a successful business. I hoped this would show that I had worth and value. But I still felt like a big imposter.

I believed I wasn’t enough for my Heavenly Father so I worked hard to become the best Christian ever… and followed a strict set of rules for what I wore, what I did, what I didn’t do, what books I read, what kinds of movies I watched, who I associated with. I got up really early to read my Bible and pray every day. I made sure I was as different from “the world” as I could be. But all of this made me feel like I just needed to do better, try harder, strive more.

I was inwardly miserable, constantly stressed and anxious, regularly struggling with panic attacks, incredibly lonely, and often suicidal.

And then Jesus swooped in and, through His grace and kindness, He revealed to me the life-transforming power of the Gospel.

He died on the Cross so I can stop striving. When I put my faith in Him, I no longer have to try to be good enough. I am covered by the blood and when God looks at me He sees *Jesus*.

It took me a few years to believe this truth and let it soak in deep. But when I did, it set me FREE!

I am loved. I am accepted. I am pre-approved. I have incredible worth. In Him.

I know deep down to the tip of my toes that I am more than enough in Christ. And I can live out of this belief and stop trying to prove myself.

I am fully loved and chosen by the Creator of the Universe. And that is what defines me now.

2018 Goals Update

Personal Goals

1. Read 100 non-self-help books that will build me up/encourage me/inspire me/recharge me. (Fiction/story-driven/biographies/inspirational living books/devotionals.) See the list of 44 books I plan to read this year.

**Progress: 36 books read so far this year

2. Read through the entire Bible.

**Progress: I’m using the Robert Murray M’Cheyne plan and am all caught up— yay!

3. Write one handwritten note to someone every week.

**Progress: 29 notes written so far this year

4. Run 500 miles.

**Progress: 270 miles run so far

Marriage Goal

5. Go on an overnight trip with Jesse without the kids.Jesse and I went to NYC together in January.

Family Goals

6. Read 10 books aloud with the kids.

**Progress: I’ve finished one book so far and we’re over halfway through another book. (I have a plan for how we’re going to incorporate more reading into our schedule once school starts and we’re all driving in the car to school dropoffs every morning. For now, I’m just happy that we’re fitting in a little family reading a few times per week when we’re all in the car together driving to the pool or somewhere else. Something is better than nothing, right??)

7. Take the kids to South Africa. We took this trip in July. What a memorable experience!

8. Go on a family road trip.

**Progress: We’ve been researching some options for this. Stay tuned!

Financial Goals

9. Save up to pay cash to finish off an office for me and workout room for Jesse and me in the basement in our new house.

**Progress: The workout room is DONE and we’re starting on the office!

10. Replenish our Emergency Fund (we dipped into it to replace my car when it got totaled because of the carpet beetle infestation.)

Business Goals

11. Increase our gross income from the business by 8%.

12. Launch 5 new courses.

**Progress: We launched 4 Weeks to a More Productive Life launched in January, Content Creation 101 in February, 4-Week Blog Coaching Program in March, Email List Setup 101 in March, Make Over Your Mornings LIVE in April, the Facebook Live Masterclass in May, and we launched Build Your List 101 in June!

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