Monthly Archives: December 2011

Out with the Old…Ready for 2012

2011 has been quite a year. And frankly I feel as though it flew by.

For 2012, I am going to enjoy small moments more.  I am going to take the  time and savor the precious gifts I have been given. My children. My husband. My life.

2011 tested me in my faith, in my patience, in my strength.  I accomplished things I never thought possible.  I also experienced things I never want to experience again.

But that is what makes me….Me.

So while I won’t linger in 2011 longing to do things differently, I will look back occasionally only to see just how far I have come.

Happy New Year to you my dear Readers. Thank you for always being there.  You guys are the best!

<3 Dan, Tiff, Madi and Sean

A Reminder for Myself

I  can be a bit of a hot head.

When things don’t exactly go my way. The kids aren’t listening. There is traffic. Hubby and I are irritated with each other over nothing.

I tend to lose my cool.

I can be a yeller.  I don’t like that about myself, but it is true.  And I can tell immediately that I am about to explode when I feel the blood boil inside of me. It is like a volcano that is erupting, causing destruction to everything in its path.

Not a very pretty picture.

Last night I read from James 1. God knew I needed to hear His word and hear what He had to say about my eruptions of anger. Even if I felt they were justified, this truth was like a splash of cold water on my face:

“for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God”. James 1:20

When I am yelling at my husband, kids,  bad drivers (oh come on, you do it too!) in no way am I glorifying God.  I may very well be angry, but we have to understand that our anger should not destroy others.

Even though I may be angry that my  kids will not clean up their toys, my words should not hurt them. My words should lovingly instruct them on how to care for their possessions.

When my husband doesn’t exactly hear me correctly on something, my first instinct should not be to jump down his throat and accuse him of being a poor listener. I should restate carefully and clearly for him so that we are on the same page. Together. As a team.

For bad drivers though…nope…they deserve the yelling. Just kidding. 😉

The point is, I need to do a better job of listening and less talking. When I feel upset about a situation, a word, a task not completed….I need to start taking those things immediately before God’s throne and allow Him to deal with them. And allow Him to change and mold me in the process.

This is not easy for me.  I have said many times before that I am a control freak.  I like to grab the reigns and forge my own path.  Thankfully He who began a good work in me will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. Philippians 1:6

What are you learning in your times with the Lord?

<3 Tiff

One Word 2012

Christmas is over.  The days after Christmas are filled with chaos as I try to bring back some order into my home.  The rooms (specifically the kids) are filled with new toys and the time to purge of unused items has come.

I love Christmas time.  I love the holidays, the smell of baked goods, the opening of gifts, the celebration of our Savior.

But I truly missed an essential piece this year.  A piece that would have made this Christmas a lot less stressful.


My word for 2011 was Thanksgiving. Eucharisteo.  And I truly tried to live a life of Thanksgiving daily.  It was hard and I had to be intentional, but overall it was a year I was thankful for.

My husband has a job.  I get to stay at home with the kids. I have family close by.  We have a working car. Madi goes to a great school.  Both of my kids are healthy and happy. We have a roof over our heads. Air conditioning and a heater. Food in the pantry.

I have nothing to complain about.

But I lacked Peace.  Especially this Christmas.

I was constantly in knots over what needed to be done. My house was not peaceful due to lack of organization, the kids anxious due to a lack of schedule.  There are so many facets to peace that it can seem almost impossible to attain.

But Christ said He is the Prince of Peace.

He needs to be the center of my home. The center of my heart.  When I am fully submitted to Him, my heart will experience peace.  When I fully submit to my duties as a wife and mother and truly care for my home, I will experience peace. This does not mean that there will be stress-free days. But peace is there because of the condition of my heart.

So my word for 2012 is Peace.

I am so excited for this upcoming year.

Do you have a word that you will choose to meditate on for 2012?

<3 Tiff

Why Bother?

I have used a ton of excuses in my life when it comes to taking care of myself.

*I don’t have time.

*I’m a mom.

*It’s too expensive.

*My family needs me. There is too much to do so I can’t take the time to  workout.

There is probably a ton more that are not coming to mind, but chances are those excuses are familiar to some of you.  I have shared my story of realizing how much I needed to take care of myself….or else my family would suffer.

And unless you are active and eating healthy (most of the time) you  make these excuses too. But allow me to let you in on a little secret.

We all have the same 24 hours.  We all are experiencing some pinch in our finances.  We all have things to do.

And when I realized that, I realized that I could not longer make those excuses. They didn’t fly.

And I realized something huge as well. I had to make my Why-meaning why I wanted to lose the extra baby weight and eat healthy-much bigger.

God showed me that my body was not my own. It was a gift He had given me and that it was an instrument to be used by Him to further His Kingdom.  When I took the focus off me me me….and directed my focus towards Him I wanted to honor Him.  I wanted to glorify God with my body. I wanted to take care of it so that He could use me!  

I know this may seem unpopular and it might offend some of you.  I am not trying to.  But when we are unhealthy, our bodies out of shape and unable to do certain tasks then how can we complete what God asks of us.

Yes, we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us.

But that doesn’t mean we need to embrace the sins of gluttony and sloth.

So why do I bother with sharing all of this? Because I believe God is doing something huge.  And I believe that there are tons of folks out there who are wasting opportunities to do incredible things for the  Kingdom, yet they are limited physically, emotionally and spiritually.

Is this you? Ask for forgiveness from Him. Then commit to taking small steps towards taking care of yourself (write it down if you have to!) and get moving. No need to get crazy. You aren’t trying to be a body builder or a Victoria Secret Model. Just someone who desires to be used by God.

<3 Tiff

Reading in 2012

Every year, I try to create a reading list full of books I want to tackle in the new year.  I generally like to read a new book each month so I am starting now to compile my list.

Here are a few in the running:

Every Body Matters: Gary Thomas- I made the mistake on Twitter saying it was by Gary Chapman, but no….it is Gary Thomas. I have read the sample from my new Nook Tablet (which was a present from Dan that came early this year!) and I am really excited to read it after I finish Made To Crave.

Push by Chalene Johnson: So excited to read this book by my favorite fitness instructor.  I love Turbo Jam and Turbo Fire and she is so incredibly gifted in motivation and time management.  I can’t wait to glean from her wisdom.

A Confident Heart by Renee Swope: I have heard nothing but incredible things regarding this book so I am thrilled to have it on my list for the year 2012.

Grace for the Good Girl-Emily Freeman: Again, another book I have heard constantly about.  On the list it goes!

Eat That Frog-Brian Tracy: A business book that many have told me about.  Excited to read this and learn more about how to run my business effectively and positively.

This list is by no means finished. I am sure that I will be adding to it throughout the year, but I believe this is a great start.

What books are on your reading list for 2012?

<3 Tiff

Sunday Worship

“He who is often reproved, yet stiffens his neck, will suddenly be broken beyond healing.” Proverbs 29:1

While having lunch with Dan yesterday, he jokingly said he opened my fortune cookie by mistake: “Be willing to admit that you may be wrong; You’re only human.”

Humility can often take the form of admitting our mistakes or failures.  We don’t have to be right all the time.

Have a blessed Sunday,

<3 Tiff

Life Around Here

We as a family have spent quite a bit of time indoors.  For us Californians, it has been pretty cold. And let me be honest by saying that I don’t really like the cold.

If we ever move to a state where it snows I am in big trouble. And yes I will cry.

We have been hanging out, decorating for Christmas and just enjoying each other’s company.  I am loving the moments between Madi and Sean lately. They are truly best friends and I could not ask for better siblings.  They laugh so much together….and they fight a lot too.

But hey, they are siblings!

What have you all been up to?  Anybody experiencing crazy weather? Snow?  Or are you a wimpy Californian like me ;).

<3 Tiff~

Gift-Giving Ideas

I love gift giving. I love shopping for my family and friends and watching them as they open up a present from me.  I try my best to find things that fit their personality and interests.

Here are some ideas for you if you are still searching for the perfect gift for your loved one.

The Fashionista

Here are some of my FAVORITE shops in the whole wide world:

Ruche: This little online boutique has home decor, beautiful clothes, shoes and accessories that will meet every style.  Bonus is that their prices are fabulous. I love their dresses and shoes and I get so many compliments when I wear anything from their shop. They also offer gift cards.

ModCloth: Another favorite online boutique.  Such incredible clothes.

Mary Kay: My sister, Sheena Rush, is an extremely talented hair and makeup artist. She recently began selling Mary Kay and ladies, she knows her way around the makeup table. There are tons of awesome gift ideas on her website so be sure to check her out.

Thirty One Bags: I absolutely love these bags. They are functional, cute and fantastic.  I just purchased one from my SIL to use as a diaper bag and I seriously love it. LOVE!

Harper clothing: Gorgeous vintage inspired apparel.  I wore one of their dresses for the Staff Christmas party at our church and I received a ton of compliments on it. Beautifully designed apparel.

The Health Junkie

Giving the gift of health this holiday season is so what I am about.  There are so many awesome tools and programs out there that it was hard to narrow it down:

Foam Rollers: This is on my Christmas wish list. After my race last Saturday I totally could have used this.

Exercise DVD Programs: P90X2, P90X, TurboFire, Insanity….tons of fun stuff. Plus grab one for yourself and you and your loved one can get fit together  in 2012!

Fitness Magazine Subscription: I subscribe to quite a few and I love the tips and recipes that I get from these awesome magazines.  Check out sites like Amazon, for some great deals.

For the Foodie

The VitaMix: A friend recently turned me on to this incredible blender, food processor in one and I am IN LOVE! It is my dream to have one of these. For a similar and more affordable option, the Ninja is also a great machine.  Have heard awesome things about both of these! Plus it would be great for me to mix my Shakeology in.

The Book Lover

The Nook Tablet: If you have a reader in your family, this is awesome.  It can’t do all the things an iPad does, but it is pretty close.  I would recommend the Kindle Fire, however the reviews have not been too favorable yet so I won’t.  If you don’t want the fancy tablet then getting the basic E-reader from Barnes and Noble or Amazon is still a great purchase!

I hope that helps!!  What are some great gift ideas you  have seen?

<3 Tiff