I’m a little late, but happy June, everybody! I am so excited to share something super cool with you! I am the BIGGEST fan of my friend Jess and her incredible business and ministry, Naptime Diaries. I have given her prints as gifts, I enjoy her art in our home (we have this one!), and D and I love her journals (can’t wait to get ABIDE in the mail!). I was so thrilled to finally meet Jess when we met up in Nashville (post to come about that soon!) and have officially decided that she’s one of my most favorite people ever. And what’s more? I LOVE creating art with her!
For our first (of hopefully bunches) of collaborative pieces, I teamed up with Jess to provide the lettering for her June Printable Bundle. Hooray!!
For those of you who are new to the bundles, for $5 you get everything above – a bundle of 12 different printable items! This includes: a monthly calendar, weekly planner, two notecards, four scripture memory cards, a to-do list, two prints, and a desktop wallpaper. You just purchase the bundle at the Naptime Diaries Shop, and then you will receive an email to the account you purchased the bundle with containing a download of all the high resolution PDF’s so the images can be printed or used in any size.
Summer is a mix of both restful and crazy, relaxing and scheduling. We hope this fun bundle of goodies helps you to list, plan, and then chill. As Jess always says – “It’s gonna be great!” Purchase your June Printable Bundle —> here. Enjoy!
I’m excited to share a really special giveaway tonight from my friends at The Influence Network. The Influence Network team is made up of a group of women that I wildly respect, love and admire. For those of you that have never heard of The Influence Network, a bit of background: My friends Jess and Hayley started the Influence Network several years ago. They gathered a tribe of women who believe that God has given you influence right where you are, for His purpose. All year long on their website, they have super helpful videos, forums, online classes, a cool newsletter and lots of helpful tools to help you discover your own influence and how to maximize it for His glory. And then, every year, there is a conference. Because, sometimes (always, for me), it’s fun to learn and grow and celebrate with other people. Not just online, but with skin on.
At the conference specifically, there will be teaching, talking, sharing and celebrating concerning the ways He might want to use you on the individual platforms He’s given you. (Even if you don’t think you have a “platform,” trust me, you do. If you’re reading this, you do). The conference is this coming September 25-27 in Indianapolis, Indiana, and I would LOVE to meet you there!
And here’s the super cool part. This year, the Influence team has assembled their biggest giveaway ever: A FREE Influence Experience! Everything you need to make your Influence Conference dreams come true! But seriously, that’s over $1000 in free stuff!
• 2 nights at the Westin Hotel ($300 value)
• $250 Airline Voucher
I can’t wait to hang out with all of these incredible women! (And Sammy)… And you! You can enter to win below. (The winner will be announced Thursday June 5, 2014). And even if you don’t win, get a ticket right here. I’d love to meet you this fall, give you a BIG squeeze, and figure out how to navigate this onliney-bloggy-instagrammy world in a way that points people to Him. Join us?! xoxo
a Rafflecopter giveaway
For the first time in my entire 32 years, I was actually ready… early. I had my Lara bars, appropriate travel sized toiletries, tons of fun nail polish for the women at HEKO, travel journal, clothes set out, little plastic mermaids (gifts for Eva while I’m gone), and a responsible, information-packed email sent to my parents. I was ready to leave for Kenya today.
When The Mocha Club asked me to go with them to Kenya, I was overwhelmed and overjoyed. My friend Annie – with your help!! – raised over $10,000 (!!!!!) to go towards updating New Dawn school. A group of us were going to head over there to check out the school, make some art and love on some students, and report back about all the incredible things God is doing there.
But today, instead, I am in my office. Heart heavy, bag still packed, lukewarm coffee.
There has been a recent increase in senseless violence in Kenya, and especially in Nairobi – right where we were headed. In light of the recent bombings, kidnappings and the U.S. Embassy’s suggestion for no travel to Kenya, we needed to reevaluate our trip. On friday, our group got on a conference call to talk through our plan. Through weird silences and a lot of pauses and questions, we decided it would be best to postpone our trip. I am so humbled and honored by how the Mocha Club and African Leadership staff handled this situation. They were so wise, considerate and caring. They were not fearful but empowering. As a team, we decided that if our true priority is to tell the story of all the LIFE and LOVE and GOOD NEWS happening in Kenya, it would be best to wait. We wanted the focus of the trip to be on telling the beautiful story of New Dawn and how we need Africa – not on our safety. Simply put, we wanted your #1 question to be “Is it so incredible?!” not, “Are you okay?!”
(Here is one of the New Dawn classrooms before. Can’t wait to show you the after!)
I have a heavy heart, but these things remain true: 1. The money has ALREADY been raised, praise the Lord!!!!!!! All that money going right to New Dawn and fixing her up like she deserves! 2. We will go, just not now. And God has a plan, and His timing is perfect. We will rest in that this week. 3. I’ve read the end of The Book. I know Love Wins.
More updates to come about what’s next. For now, if you’re interested, check out the other girl’s blogs. My heart is heavy with them. Annie | Jessi | Marisa | Nish (You too, Lizzie!) // And you can read The Mocha Club update on their Blog as well.
Please keep New Dawn, it’s staff and students, the women at HEKO, the Mocha Club team, and the people of Kenya in your prayers. I know you will. xo
I’m not going to freak you out and tell you you’re behind. But, well, Mother’s Day is tomorrow. The LL shop has some quick & easy downloadable prints available, which make the perfect gift in a pinch! Print any downloadable PDF at home (or call your nearest Office Max of Fed Ex Office), grab a frame from Target, and voilà! Throw in some fresh flowers and you are all set! Easy breezy. You can find the links to purchase the downloads & mock gift certificate right here –> For the Ladies
For all the mammas, out there – Happy Mother’s Day!!!
And for all of my sisters out there who are grieving on this day, I’m sending you love and prayers. In Isaiah 55:8-11, we read: “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, and My ways are not your ways,” says the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts. The rain and snow come down from heaven and do not return there without giving water to the earth. This makes plants grow on the earth, and gives seeds to the planter and bread to the eater. So My Word which goes from My mouth will not return to Me empty. It will do what I want it to do, and will carry out My plan well.
Whether you find yourself rejoicing in your blessings this weekend, or hurting and confused, I am lifting you up as best I can, and praying you find comfort and rest, sunshine and hope. xoxo
… was a Peanut Butter Koopa Troopa from The Wormhole coffee shop in Chicago! Peanut mousse, local chocolate, espresso, almond milk. STOP. IT. For those of you who like peanut butter and chocolate… and coffee, this is the best thing ever. I took this photo while D and I were working on our laptops there last summer. I have yet to find a latte like this one since… it’s like, the unicorn of drinks. (Apparently PB is really hard to work with. I did find this Peanut Butter Torani syrup though, which is super delicious in a pinch!).
Do you have a favorite drink that reminds you of a special time somewhere? I think of Piña Coladas on the beach with cigars and Dugan at my sister’s wedding in Rivera Maya, Sharon’s famous Egg Nog at her Christmas party, homemade hurricanes with our best friends on Fat Tuesday, sun tea every summer growing up. I love it all… every sweet, satisfying memory. I’m feeling a little homesick for our old neighbor Chicago today… for our friends there, for the skyscrapers and shopping and diversity. But mostly, in all honesty, for that peanut butter latte. xo