*Image found on Pinterest. But it was originally found HERE.
TODAY. I’m talking about our husbands. And how important our roles is as wives.
The next verse in my study of Proverbs is:
‘Her husband is respected at the city gate, where he takes his seat among the elders of the land.’ Proverbs 31:23
It’s pretty crazy to me that this verse would reside right smack dab in the middle of describing this amazing woman of noble character. It hit me hard how incredibly important our roles as GOOD wives and mothers really is. The success of our husbands is dependent on it. I know that each man is responsible for his own choices and mistakes, so I am not saying that as wives we are responsible for every decision, good or bad, that our husbands make. But I AM saying that we, as their wives, have an incredible amount of influence. We set the tone in the entire home; the thermostat, if you will. We have the power to support, encourage, and lift up. Or we can easily build strife, tear down and discourage within our homes.
Whoa. There’s a lot of damage that could be done if we, the wives, aren’t careful.
The bible also says,“A wife of noble character is her husbands crown, but a disgraceful wife is like decay in his bones.” Proverbs 12:4
DECAY? In his bones? That’s the same as death. Being a disgraceful wife is the same as decay in his bones. BUT a crown to her husband, is something he is proud of. He cherishes it and wears it proudly. He knows his wife supports him and can leave to head to his work with confidence. He is confident in her and in all that she does for their family and he loves her. He’s proud of her.
He’s respected in the city gates, which is where all the business and legal matters were once settled. It was considered a high honor for a man to sit in the gates. He likely would have had to achieved a certain amount of business success and he was very wise. It wasn’t a place for fools. This man was highly respected. He was a very hard worker. He endured much to obtain the status that he now holds. And it’s likely that he didn’t do it alone. The support of his faithful and fearless wife was probably the backbone to all of his success. Her persistent prayers for him, her encouraging words to him, her uplifting spirits and positive attitudes probably helped spur him on to all that God was calling him to. This man has the full support of his wife. And she believes in him to be an amazing man of God. She didn’t nag him. She never stole his courage. She wasn’t an enemy in his own home. This woman realized how great her husband was. He wasn’t average. He was a great man. And she knew that this man needed a helper in his life. She didn’t work to tear him down, or to be resentful towards him, or harboring anger. She faithfully loved him through supporting his work and taking care of their family.
Everything we do as wives makes a huge impact on our husbands. And I think its so important to remember, that while we are busy running our households, we are also representing him. The bible is full of verses that talk about how dangerous it is to be a wife of contention (Proverbs 25:24, Proverbs 21:19, Proverbs 27:15). This is a wife that doesn’t create harmony, one who argues, one who nags. Nothing good comes from bitterness in our hearts towards our husbands and anger that makes your home living environment unbearable. WE are the thermostats in our home. And as hard as it may be to love and support your husband at times, its important. Your husband IS amazing. You married him, right?! Why not help encourage him to BE amazing in whatever it is that he is doing? Pray for him. Pray for protection around him. Pray that he would be used to glorify God in the ways that HE sees fit. Not in the ways YOU see fit. Pray for God’s will in his life and that he WOULD lead your home. Be your husbands biggest cheerleader. Be his biggest prayer warrior. It’s SO important to remember that you are a team, together in this life. And while you might not be the one going outside of the home to make a living, he IS. And it can be a dark and scary place for a man to stand alone.
I’m aware that marriage is hard. I married a very easy going, workable guy who has been a team with me in everything so far in this life together. But STILL, marriage is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. It’s so important to take care of one another. Take care of your home and husband as though it’s your ministry. It’s a window into your heart and the success of your husband depends on it. I have to remind myself every day that my home is my ministry. Not that I don’t love it, but because it’s HARD. This job as a wife and mother is hard, sacrificial work. But making the choice every day to love, respect and support your husband isn’t an option, I think. The bible is pretty clear that we are to be our husbands crown. A valuable partner in his life, taking care of him, our family and working hard too. Jesus never promises that ANY of this is going to be easy. But I can see the rewards of this woman’s hard work just LEAPING off the page at me. Do you think she felt rewarded every day?
No. I guarantee she didn’t.
But she was faithful. Faithful to her husband, supportive in his work, and loved him. Their whole family was respected by the entire city. Something that was achieved by the TWO of them working together. a faithful team until the end. And an amazing example for us all.
We had such a great, simple, relaxing day. Well, until Cruz came down with a fever. I’m not quite sure what’s up with that. But I got really pretty flowers from Jay and we ordered PF Chang’s and just ate in our living room together. It was exactly how I wanted to spend today.
Want to hear something funny? We got Cruz an Angry Birds stuffed animal for Valentine’s Day. He is OBSESSED with Angry Birds. Funny thing? He has NO IDEA what it is. He calls them ‘Red Fishy Birds’ and just loves them. But he doesn’t know how to play the game, nor does he understand what it’s all about. But I think he almost passed out when he opened this today, he was SO excited.
Only our kid.
I’m a week late on this post. We’ve had sick kiddies in our household, and as you know, that can tend to put other things on hold when that happens. Its been a blessing in disguise because I honestly needed a little more time to think on this verse. I didn’t understand the meaning in it, or what I was supposed to learn. Maybe it jumps off the page to you. But it took a little longer for me. It was always one of those verses that I just sort of breezed past. But after praying on it and doing a little more research, I realized that I was wrong about this verse and it’s importance. I just didn’t really understand it at first.
The next verse is:
‘She is not afraid of the snow for her household, for all her household are clothed with scarlet.’ Proverbs 31:21
I believe this verse is saying a couple different things. First, she’s not afraid of the winter that is coming. Why? I believe it’s because she’s PREPARED. She is always looking ahead to the next season and preparing her home and family accordingly. She is ready for the snow and the harsh winter that might possibly be coming. She doesn’t need to be afraid because she is prepared for what the next season may bring.
How many times do we enter the next season in our lives scattered, nervous and anxious? I know I struggle with this sometimes. I just roll into the next season without really taking the time to truly PREPARE for it. This woman is not afraid. She looks ahead and gets her household ready for the next season. She’s likely getting winter clothing ready, sewing enough to keep them warm. Her children are growing and she sees the needs that they will have ahead of time. She isn’t overwhelmed by it. She isn’t dreading all the work to be done. She isn’t afraid of the storms that will likely come. She anticipates the cold, blistering winter that lies ahead and she prepares for it. The storms that come don’t take her by surprise because she is ready. And she doesn’t live in fear.
I struggle with fear. Sometimes, I fear the worst. Why do I do that? This woman doesn’t do that. She prepares for it, is ready for it, and probably doesn’t live in a spirit of dread while doing it.
But then it says that all of her household is clothed in scarlet, which I think speaks a lot about what kind of a wife and mother she is. I think that it means that she CARES. Not only does she care enough to prepare for the winter for her whole family with all the hard work that goes with that, but they are clothed in scarlet. which is a beautiful color. I could be wrong here, but I take this to mean that she cared enough to make sure that they all looked good. Not in a materialistic kind of way. Not in the showy kind of way. Not in the fake kind of way where she just wanted to keep up appearances. But because she CARED about them. She wanted them to look their best, with whatever means they had. She wanted her husband and children to feel proud in what they were wearing and to be blessed by it. She cared that they were put together before they left the house in the morning, and she worked hard to sew, do laundry and to prepare their things for them.
These two verses speak VOLUMES to the harmony that she created within her home. Her family doesn’t need to worry about the clothing they are going to wear. She is already on top of it before the winters come. They don’t even question whether or not they are going to have clothing on their backs. They are confident in her and know that each article of clothing that she carefully sews for them will be out of love, care and careful planning.
I’m not saying that we all need to become amazing seamstresses before this verse can apply. I am the FURTHEST from good seamstress. And I secretly envy those of you who can sew and create beautiful things in that way. But I do think we can all learn something from this verse, whether or not you can sew and create clothing. I think there is a lot to be said about creating harmony in our homes. There’s a peace that comes with preparation, hard work, and planning. And I think it’s really important to see the next season looming on the horizon and to gently start preparing for it. Not out of worry, but to get things in order so we can transition our families into whatever the next season of life may be for us. Clothing our families with confidence is more than about what they are actually wearing. But taking the time to care for what they look like, inside and out, and to cover them with beauty in our words, actions, hard work, and even in material things at times.
Being prepared and caring for our families in the day to day tasks, such as brushing their hair, is something that will go such a long way. As women and mothers, caring for our family is something that seems like an obvious topic of conversation. Of course we’re taking care of our families. BUT, I know all too well that the day to day tasks can become somewhat mundane. It was an awesome reminder to me to remember that all of the preparation I do every day, week, month, actually can make a huge difference in the morale of my family. Am I preparing our lives in such a way as to instill confidence? Or am I afraid? Am I not caring to brush their hair and teeth, because they’re “too little” to care? Am I remembering that what we look like (inside and out) is a direct reflection on the work I do inside my home when no one else is looking?
I am reminded that I have no need to be afraid of the winters ahead. But to work hard, prepare for the snow, and to clothe my family with the best that I have to offer. Confidence will breed from my attitude and hard work as a mother and a wife. They will be confident in me, and they will always know that I have their best interest at heart.
We photographed a wedding last night. And I SERIOUSLY don’t think I’ve ever laughed harder while working in my entire life. We had SUCH a great time and it was a huge celebration for these two.
I love what I do. So much so, that it’s all I can think about sometimes. Even in the moments when I feel deprived and devoid of creativity and inspiration, I am so in love with what I do. Getting to know our couples and making new close friends is the icing on the cake. And then the topper to ALL of that is actually being at their wedding and feeling like we’re apart of the family. And being able to dance at the reception WITH them. And watching two people who’ve gotten close to us step into wedded bliss.
We hope our relationships with all of our clients stretch way past their actual wedding day. There’s nothing more inspirational then fostering good relationships, turning friends into family, and photographing their lives.
Wow. I’d do all the hard work all day every day to be able to be apart of what we were apart of last night. Amazingly fun. Here’s one image from the day. More to come on our actual website soon.
Pardon my absence. We’ve been vacationing in Disneyland for the past few days and with two little guys, that’s hardly a vacation! I hardly had time to think, let alone blog or do anything else! Ha! It was a very fun trip, although doing Disneyland with your small kiddos is quite a different experience than with zero children. We were so excited to take Cruz though. Since he’s now two, we were stoked to watch him take it all in and somewhat understand and remember this trip. And we were right! He’s still talking about it and talked about it the whole way home! I did manage to take a few pictures, although I intended to take many more. That’s what happens when you have a 5 month old who hates his life the entire trip.
Seriously. Rider couldn’t have been more difficult.
But we started out the trip in the car with NEW cars for Cruz to play with! He loved it. We even set up our laptop so he could watch the movie Cars, Toy Story and even Monsters, Inc. Definitely made traveling with him a little easier in the car.
We stopped to let him play at McDonald’s and to feed Rider. We got him a new car and decided that spoiling him a little bit on this trip wouldn’t do any harm. Not like he needs another car, but he was excited to get a new one nonetheless. At this point in the trip, Rider wasn’t fussy at all. He had slept the whole way and was a pretty happy and content little guy!
Then we got there and checked into our house. Yes, you heard me. HOUSE. If you are ever traveling anywhere, especially with a lot of people, you NEED to check out HomeAway.com. We were able to rent a 6 bedroom, 5 bathroom house for super cheap for 3 nights! There was 9 of us, including the boys and everyone had their own rooms and bathrooms, basically. Cruz and Rider each had their own rooms too! It was so nice to be able to spread out and be comfortable while we were gone. Hotels are great, but they get pretty pricy quickly and you usually don’t have the option of a suite that’s big enough for 9 people without it being super expensive. I ALWAYS check HomeAway.com before I resort to hotels if I can because it’s an awesome way to stay places for pretty inexpensively! Check it out for sure.
We got up the next morning and headed to Disneyland!! This is where I didn’t take as many pictures as I would have hoped. Rider was a PILL the ENTIRE day. I think he was cold all day long, but I couldn’t figure out what the problem was. I tried to bundle him up, feed him often, change his diaper, check his teeth- EVERYTHING. He was not happy. I then thought (stupidly) that I would take him on a couple of the rides that you can bring babies on and see if that would distract him. First, (and I’m not really sure why) I took him on Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. Which, looking back was a horrible mistake. Ha! It was too much overstimulation and he was a wreck when we got out.
THEN, I thought I’d be clear to take him on Pirates of the Caribbean. Again, another HUGE mistake. He screamed, and I mean SCREAMED, the whole time. It ended with me sitting in the boat sobbing with him. All any of us could hear was a screaming baby. No fun for anyone. When we got off the boat, I apologized PROFUSELY to the strangers that sat on the back half of our boat and they were very nice and gracious to me. They said, at first they thought the baby cries were apart of the ride! Haha!! Yea, they were definitely just MY baby actually screaming. *Sigh* So Rider didn’t go on any other rides after that. But he was very difficult the whole rest of the day. And I couldn’t figure it out.
Cruz, on the other hand, was such a good boy! He obeyed and loved every minute of being in Disneyland! We ran into Woody and Jesse too! The line was SO long, so we didn’t wait for a photo op, but we did stand off to the side so he could see them. Then, Jesse decided to come over to give Cruz a high five even though we weren’t in line!! It was so great. I don’t have a picture of it but I do have a video of it. Here’s a picture before Jesse came over.
My mom FINALLY got Rider to go to sleep. This is after he had been awake and fussy and screaming for 6 hours. Yes, from 8 am until almost 2 he was awake and a VERY unhappy little camper. Grammy to the rescue!
The next day, I layered Rider’s clothes like crazy and then I brought several blankets to keep him warm in his seat, as well as hats and more socks. And low and behold, it worked! Come nap time, he actually slept for about an hour and a half in his seat on the second day we were there. What a relief! I felt like I could actually enjoy Disneyland with my family and not have to worry about Rider. He was obviously way more comfortable this day, which is why I thought maybe he was too cold on the first day. Weird, because I thought I had dressed him warmly! But he was not the happy kid we are so used to. This was more like it.
We grabbed breakfast every morning at Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen at Downtown Disney. Um, YUM. They have these amazing bengets and egg sandwiches too! It was so fun being with family!
Cruz is a bit obsessed with the Pixar movie Cars, so we were thrilled to run into these two!
Every time we wanted to ride any of the rides, we always had two of us get a Baby Pass (which is AWESOME) and wait with the kiddos while everyone else went on whichever ride we were at. My sister and I were waiting outside of Tower of Terror as everyone else ran to ride it, and while we were waiting these toy soldiers from Toy Story came out and performed for a crowd that was there! It was SO cute! Cruz calls the toy soldiers ‘guys’ every time he sees them, so he just kept shouting, ‘Hi Guys!’ haha! It was too cute! Now that we’re home, he keeps talking about seeing ‘The Guys’. Too funny.
And of course we followed Woody around the whole entire theme park.
I sorta failed at taking good, amazing pictures this weekend. Like I said, I had a pretty cranky baby on my hands and while I did have a lot of family that helped a lot, there was just a lot going on so I wasn’t able to focus on that. Ugh. But I did snap one shot while we saw World of Color inside California Adventure. If you ever get a chance, you HAVE TO GO SEE IT. It’s phenomenal. I mean, it’s unlike anything I’ve seen and I can’t wait to go back to see it again!! For most of it, my mom held Rider and he and Cruz both were mesmerized by the show! It was incredible! I have video of it and I kind of want to post it, but I’m afraid it doesn’t do it justice.
The rest of the trip was great. We went on lots of rides, ate way too much food, and had a blast!! On our way home, the boys were much fussier than they were on the way there. So we had to make extra stops, which made for a long day yesterday! But Jason’s hat kept everyone occupied and laughing.
Then we got word that my mom, sister and brother-in-laws car broke down right outside of Indio! They had to be towed back to Indio to see what the problem was, and it turns out that there was a major problem with the radiator. Now, I’m no mechanic, but I do know that that is not good. They ended up having to stay the night in Indio, rent a car, and are having to tow Cameron’s car back to Phoenix. What a mess! We felt so bad for them but are happy that everyone is ok for sure. Other than that, we all had a great family vacation! We are already planning our next trip for this November!! We love Disneyland and we LOVE going there as a family. As hard as it was to have Rider in the park, I’d do it all over again for the experience of it. It was hard and exhausting. But it was so much fun!
Oh and I have to leave you with a picture of Rider in his new ‘ears’ we got him while we were there. I saw the beanie Mickey ears and he HAD to have them!! More like, I had to have them I guess. Ha!
I’ve been thinking a lot lately, about how truly grateful I am to have Jason as my husband and partner in this life. He’s a fabulous dad to our children, he works harder than most people I know, and he seriously has the biggest heart ever. He always sees the best in people, even if it’s hard to actually see the good. He’s loyal to a fault and he treasures his friends. Above all, he supports me in EVERYTHING I do. He never makes me feel like my place is only in the home. And even though he gets up and works every day, he helps me with the boys no matter how little sleep he gets. He doesn’t expect dinner to be on the table every night. He helps with all things around the house. He loves the Lord and he lives it out in the way takes care of me. No matter what crazy idea I have, he supports it. He values that I don’t want to be just a mom and that I love to work. He was behind me in my passion for photography and backed me and us up 100%. He’s working hard to help us get out of debt. He gives me breaks and watches both boys whenever I need or want him to, if he’s available and spends so much of his time with us.
I just feel truly blessed by him.
I’m not trying to paint the wrong picture here. We totally argue and fight sometimes. We butt heads on things. Things aren’t perfect. But I don’t want them to be. At the end of the day, I know I have his full support in my life and with our kids and that’s all I can really ever ask for. I truly feel like we are equals in this life. Never has he said, ‘Well, I go to work and you stay home so the kids aren’t my responsibility.’. In fact, he’s done the opposite. When I prayed for my future husband as a little girl I had no idea to the extent at which God was going to bless me. And like I said, things aren’t perfect. We fight, we argue sometimes. We’ve been to counseling before. But no matter how hard it gets, I know that this man that I married is my equal and that he loves me and our kiddos more than anything, and that he will go to great lengths to show me that and to support me in my life too.
I love sharing the roles with him. I love doing this life with him. Even through the hard times, there’s nothing I would trade.
If I could teach you just one thing in this life, aside from teaching you about Jesus, I hope and pray that I can teach you this:
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.” Philippians 4:6-9
This is something that I am still trying to learn. It’s something I struggle with every day, and something I pray that I won’t struggle with for much longer. But this passage is really hard for me. It’s hard, in this world we live in, to not be anxious about anything. To not worry about everything. To not be fearful.
I understand, completely.
Cruz, when life is overwhelming, when your mind won’t shut off, when fear takes over and when you’re anxious about so many things and you don’t know why- know that you can trust our Almighty Savior. Mediate on this passage. Trust in Jesus. And pray without ceasing. There’s so much about this life and this world that doesn’t make sense. There’s so much bad, anger and hate in the world and it is scary. Evil is scary. This life is only for a moment. Don’t waste your whole life being afraid and anxious about everything. Dwell on things that are pure and right and honorable. Fill your mind with the positive. Surround yourself with things that are true and pure. Guard your heart. Guard your mind. God promises peace. God is peace. Fill your life with Him, and you will live a life of peace. Even if everything around you is not peaceful.
I pray for you every day, Cruz. I pray that you and Rider both will live lives that are free of anxiety and fear. Lives that are full of peace and truth and honor. Do not be afraid. God is with you and will uphold you. Trust in Him, for He never fails.
I love you, my sweet boy.
I obviously love my kiddos. And I love it even more when they do cute things that just make you want to die. Like the fact that Cruz HAD to wear Jason’s hoodie- to be like him of course! Cruz loves jackets. He gets upset when it’s time to take his off. That we can’t figure out. But when he put Jason’s on, it was too cute. I think he really felt like a big boy!
He’s the best.