A Thank You Letter to my Friends:

Dear Friend(s):

I just wanted to write you a little note thanking you for being my friend. I know that I can be so busy and sometimes (all the times) forgetful. When I miss an event that is important and you still text me and invite me to lunch, I just want you to know that I appreciate the effort that you are giving me (the person who adores you and is struggling to keep her head above water).

You’ll never know how important our friendship means to me. When you stick by me, send me funny texts and come to the games on Thursday or Friday nights and offer me congratulations, even though I have no bearing on the outcome, THAT support carries me to the next week, to the next season.

I know every wife and every life is busy and stressful but you know how I am, you know that I give my all to one thing and then sometimes other things suffer. Yet, YOU ARE THERE. Being a friend to someone like me must be hard, yet you are still there and for that I will be forever grateful.

Please give me an extra dose of grace the next few months and please keep me in your prayers. This season comes with extra pressure and I want to be my best for everyone including you. Please consider this letter as an invitation to every ball game (with the worst seats in the house), every football club lunch and every Saturday morning that you might want to have coffee with me before Ben wakes up. I need you as a friend and I need you in my life, even when I can’t be the one making plans.

If there is one important lesson that I have learned about friends and football it’s this: You can’t do one without the other. It’s as simple as that…ask any coach’s wife, this part of the year can be so incredibly lonely.  Again, thank you for being my friend your love is more important than you know.

 

With all my love,

Nikki

 

PS: Coach wife friends, thank you so much for putting up with me during the season and us being able to pick up where we left off. Go #badgerfam

PPS: I know I have tons of friends (which I am sooooo thankful for) I just need more pics with you 🙂

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New house, Farmhouse?

This past weekend my lovely friends Amy & Sandy along with my beautiful sister, mom, aunt and cousin threw us a House Warming Party. I’ve never been to a housewarming so I wasn’t sure what to expect. We were pleasantly surprised by the amount of love and gifts that we received. I couldn’t believe how much sweet stuff we got! Most of the items came from our local stores: The Farmhouse Downtown and Hardman Interiors. You should check them out if you’re ever in Arkadelphia.

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My friend Sandy made the Chandler pic.

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My friend Ashley got us the “Where two or three Gather” and Ben bought the paper reminder roll, super cute!

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My sister got us the mirror and maybe the pic too, I can’t remember

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Some of the loot!

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Wrapped gifts for the win!

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All Farmhouse stuff 🙂

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I just love the colors of the kitchen towels.

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Swan Creek Candles are the bizness

The best part about all of this is that we OWN (well the bank does for 30 years) our home. We have spent the better part of three years praying for a new home! After several failed attempts we were able to purchase this house with help from Southern Bancorp. If you are tired of paying rent you need to look into your options of buying a home. This sucker was made for a family with a ton of kids. I’ll do a tour of the house another day 🙂

 

Check out this link (I hope it works) They have yoga mats, which I have to use since we don’t have carpet downstairs! Gaiam Yoga Mats.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thinking backwards.

Last night I was having a deep conversation with my oldest son about love languages and how as a mom I have to parent my kids differently because they feel love differently. If you don’t know about love languages here is a link for more info: Love Languages  As we are talking I had a thought that I have never thought about before. It may be old hat to you, but it was/IS new to me. I know that my love language is Acts of Service but I have only ever thought about it in the positive…my self-realization is: What about the negative?

As I put the kids to bed with prayer I go downstairs and clean the kitchen, make lunches, clean up the living room, finish up any laundry, pick up whatever toy has made its way downstairs, wipe off SOMETHING BECAUSE SOMETHING IS ALWAYS STICKY and then I can finish up my hot tea, shower, eat a nutty buddy, watch Roseanne and go to bed. But all that stuff up there at the top of this paragraph makes me bitter. I don’t want to do any of it. So that’s where the negative of the ‘acts of service’ love language comes in.

Where I feel love when someone is helping me or doing it without me telling them too…I also feel unloved when those things don’t happen. Sure it’s an annoyance that I have to do it (again) all by myself but for some reason I take it as a personal hit. I’m not certain that I like that about myself, actually I’m pretty certain that I don’t like that about myself.

So to negate these feelings I’ve been reading the Bible, doing bible plans and praying. I’ve come to realize that I’m allowing others to have control over my emotions. <–This is a big deal. I’m reacting. Ugh…it’s so unreal that I have to run through these things about once or fifteen times a year.

The thinking backwards was just my way of expressing that it is great to know your love language…it’s also good to know that when that language hasn’t been spoken to you that it can hurt, and that’s okay…but you can’t let it define you or dampen your spirit. Image-1

 

Summer is over and it’s only July

Do you ever feel like that as a Coach’s wife? Or I guess Coach’s husband…

Dead weeks are almost up, for those not in the sports world, that is the few weeks at the end of June beginning of July where no athletic events can happen. No practice, no working out, no camps. Well those end this week and with that that means our fun little summer break is officially over. I hope we can sneak in some stuff here and there but it stinks knowing that football is back…it will be “fun” football when school starts and you can see the games and the boys growth but right now it just seems like a downer.

We went to Hot Springs to a lake house that our friend’s own. They let us stay there for FREE! It was so beautiful and right on the water, it was amazing. We swam, ate God’s chicken (Chick-fil-A) and went to Magic Springs. It was an amazing few days. That was our summer vacation and I will cherish every memory! Including the scary snake, but I’m not talking about scary snakes today.

This was the view from the upper balcony. IMG_6074[1]

I’m sad our little summer is over but I like how it isn’t crazy yet. It is like we can slowly add the events until school starts…then by then we will ready and firing.

Present.

“The more I obsess over social media the more I care about me…”-Craig Groeschel (lifechurch.tv sermon on compassion titled #struggles: Part 4)

Did you read that quote? When you read it again it starts to make more sense. He (and their group of pastors) were doing a series on the different struggles people face now in our “selfie-centered world” that people didn’t have to deal with a few years ago. One thing is a lack of authenticity. I think we all know someone (or we are that someone) that posts a lot of bologna on facebook or instagram. And I don’t mean actually bologna but we all know their life isn’t THAT great.

Two other components to the series was about a lack of compassion and then dealing with relationships. If you have time you really should watch all the sermons in this series. I say that because you are on the internet and you are reading a blog that you probably just stumbled on by a small town crazy lady who can only articulate about 4% of her thoughts.

What I took away from the compassion and relationship sermons was that you can’t just be someones friend because you comment on every picture or like every status. Relationships, whether marriage or friends, take work. About 99% of the “work” is just being present (and that accounts for the title of this blog.) When you are with your significant person be there for them. Don’t say that you are going to be there and not show up…or worse show up and then spend the entire time on your cell phone. It’s hard to be a friend but they are invaluable. I cannot count the times that friendships have just drug me through the roughest patches in my life. Sometimes they even drug me through them by my hair, but I will be forever thankful.

If you are married there cannot be a 50/50 attitude. It’ll never work. One person will never live up to the expectations of the other person. There has to be an ALL OR NONE philosophy. But really ALL not the NONE. You have to be completely open, honest and actually communicate. So put the phone, lap-top or tablet down and talk. And not what you saw on facebook that day. Gosh. If you do that then you are missing the point! 🙂

This is how Pastor Craig finished up the quote from above:

…”The more I get close to Jesus the less I care about myself and strangely the more I care about other people.”

Let me say this about Arkansas Weather

Okay, do you live in Arkansas? If so, then this little tidbit of info will be old news and you’ll just shake your head in agreement. Okay, are you bi-polar? If so, you and the weather in Arkansas are ALIKE! WOOHOO you do have a friend! (I’m kidding. Take it easy.) On Monday our weather was gorgeous…blue skies and around 70 degrees. 43be86b85bcbd2d338687f79cf2a84aaWe just sat outside, I had the flu so it was the first time I was out of my bed in several days. And it was wonderful. Then time passed…not a lot of time…maybe 24 hours…and it became freezing…then it started to rain…now they are talking about snow…this all happened in four days. Oh Arkansas, make up your mind!

Regardless of the weather outside I’m all sunshinesmiley today! I get to go on a “Girls Weekend” with some of my favorite girls from high school…really it’s all the way back to elementary school but who’s counting?! I honestly do not know what we are getting into. And I find that fascinating. Mainly because I’m a control freak. I like to know things and I like to plan things. So, I’m trying to be cooler this year and go with the flow. HAHA. If you know me at all you know this is hilarious, but seriously I am trying.

I hope the weather is nice in your area. I hope the weather is nice in the area I am headed to…even though I just got word that I need to pack “summer” clothes….OKAY!

Gas Station Birthday.

My daughter is funny. She thinks differently than most people, she’s an artist in training. Public school is harder for her than most kids, but when you read to her (or when she’s reading) she understands the concepts better than most kids her age. She can visualize what you are talking about but can’t necessarily explain it to you. It’s hard being her mom. I’m type A. She’s type XYZ, or type unicorn, or type rainbow, or type glitterysparklyfunsunshine. 348

Well she is turning seven soon. She requested that she have her party at the local Pilot, which if you don’t know what that is it’s basically a truck stop that has frozen yogurt. I laughed originally, and thought, “Yeah, no.” So I started planning a bigger swimming pool party at our favorite college, but then she starts TELLING me what she’s getting, how it’s going to be and who is going to be there. Ohhh and that didn’t sit well with me. I don’t like entitled people so I’m definitely not going to raise an entitled, ungrateful person. Because of this my husband and I went back to the gas station idea. She’s getting to invite one friend and we are going to have gas station food and gas station frozen yogurt. We don’t want her to expect things like a big party and lots of gifts. We want to teach her gratitude, putting family first and contentment. We want her to receive a gift and truly be thankful for it.

How do children learn best, even children who think outside the box? By example, of course! My goal is to be more thankful and to be more content with what I have, and hopefully she will see what I am talking about. Since we live in a world of capitalist where making more money, getting more things and taking whatever it is to be better is normal the example needs to be taught early and in the home. We want to live a christian lifestyle of giving, being honest and being thankful for every single, tiny moment that we are given.  And that’s not so normal anymore. And it’s not easy. So pray that I can be a good teacher for my daughter. And I will try to let a human out in the world who is going to change perspectives of anyone who meets her.