Over the past few months, I have been taking inventory of myself and seriously evaluating the choices I have been making.
the food I eat,
the TV shows I watch,
what I do for a living,
the books I have on my shelves,
how I spend my time,
and who I spend my time with.
I’ve been working to re-align everything to be in sync with my values, passions, desires, and most importantly, godly standards.
The purge kicked off with overhauling my physical health. Last week, I started a fresh round of Whole30. I picked up my copy of “It Starts With Food” and reminded myself of the damage that I do to my body when I eat foods that have empty calories, offer little to no nutrition, and contain harmful chemicals. If you’re like me, it’s helpful to know why certain foods are not good for you because let’s face it…potato chips are delicious.
I’ve also been rethinking where I spend my money on food. I only got about 30 minutes into the documentary “Food Inc.” before I had to turn it off. But I had seen enough. I was almost angry that I wasn’t aware of how I had been supporting factory farming productions by buying brands that are everywhere in grocery stores. I don’t want my money supporting genetically modified and unhealthy animals that live in deplorable conditions. As much as possible, I want to vote with my dollar by supporting local farmers in my community. I’m choosing to purchase pasture-raised, grass-fed, wild-caught, free-range, cage-free, organic meats, seafood, poultry, pork, and eggs.
Putting this into practice, I visited my local farmer’s market this past weekend and absolutely loved it! People were there with their children and their dogs. Farmers had their vegetables, eggs, meats, and cheeses proudly displayed under white tents, and the atmosphere was just…homey. I even got a great parking spot! Everything I bought was locally grown, organic, and grass-fed or free-range.
Marc and I have been whipping up delicious Whole30 dinners including coconut curry chicken, sautéed bok choy, sweet potato noodles,
and bison burgers with portobello mushroom “buns”, avocado, homemade mayo, tomatoes, and roasted root vegetables (carrots and parsnips).
I can already see and feel a difference from simply changing the food I put on my plate. My breakouts are fading away. My nails are growing. My tendonitis in my wrist (old rock climbing injury) is fading. My stomach doesn’t feel crampy and gassy after I eat. (TMI?) I sleep more soundly. My jackets are zippering more easily. Even my hair seems to be getting longer and doesn’t break as easily.
As far as reevaluating my professional life, I have been waiting years for the opportunity to leave education. I graduated college in 2007 and have been in the field for nine years. During this time, I’ve seen education become something that I don’t recognize anymore and even worse – something that no longer satisfies my calling. I am a teacher by design. I think it’s safe to say that I’m pretty good at it as well, but my soul wasn’t feeling the love anymore. After much prayer and waiting on God, I was presented with the opportunity to move on.
This summer, I will be joining forces with Natasha of Love Street Vintage Furniture and will be working in her shop here in Downingtown. My love of working on furniture will finally move from a hobby to my full-time occupation, and I couldn’t be happier. My mind is running wild with ideas and excitement! I’ll be helping her run the shop, teaching painting classes, paint pieces, and anything else that our imaginations can dream up.
That’s why I’m so stoked to be returning to Lucketts Spring Market again this year. My VIP tickets came at the beginning of the month, and I can’t wait to head down this weekend to see all of the beautiful pieces that have been crafted, curated, and carried down
I’m also looking forward to seeing these two ladies again. (In case you don’t recognize these wildly talented women, they are Kriste from Rosemary & Thyme on the left, and Marian from Miss Mustard Seed on the right.)
This picture was taken 1 year ago when I made the trip down to Leesburg to be trained as an Inductive Bible Study Leader. The training just happened to be the same weekend as Lucketts. How fortunate! After my training, I waited for God to provide an opportunity to pursue another love – teaching the Bible. This Spring, a need popped up and I was finally able to step up as a Precept Inductive Bible study leader.
With any position of leadership comes a whole new set of challenges and convictions. God started to dig deeper into my life and He challenged me to look at my inventory of books, TV’s series, and movies. When I boil them down to their core values, do they belong on the shelf of a Bible study leader? Do they line up with what I believe and value as a Christian?
Just like unhealthy food, the answer was a resounding no.
So out they went.
This pattern of conviction, educating, evaluating, and purging has left me feeling more like “myself” than ever before. I’m proud of my choices and I feel like my life is in line all the way around. There’s still more areas that I need to work on, but for now, things are lining up as they should.