Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Thoughts from the Struggle Bus of Unicorns and Rainbow [Carrots] courtesy of waitbutwhy
There's been an article circulating on the book of faces (Facebook) in the past few day about "Why Generation Y is Unhappy". After skimming through the article a few things entered by chaotic box of thoughts (brain): 

- So... I'm not alone? Other people are feeling like they're meant for so much more than they're actually achieving?

-You mean.. I'm not supposed to already be killing it with an awesome career, multiple accolades, and lots of cash flow yet?
- And...What if some people really are special unicorns that can do anything they want? 

I am a huge believer that enough work and motivation can create something special... but I guess I can also recognize that we can't all just will ourselves to be unicorns. 

After noticing the surprisingly high amount of people I know that shared or discussed this article on happiness, expectations, and our culture;  my eyes were opened to the realization that maybe "its not just me". Maybe twenty something year olds, in the beginning of a career or two, is a hard place to be....but maybe thats ok... and maybe theres community in that place. And what if this is a multi-generational human nature problem that were just now applying cultural and sociological concepts to.. but really it's been a struggle for many for some time. 

For the sake of transparency, I have to confess that I have been taking some trips on the struggle bus recently. Working hard towards accomplishments (half marathons, triathlons, running a new business, crossfit PRs,etc.) but not feeling super rewarded. I've felt God speaking to me through these "bus rides" and I think my eyes were opened to some things I needed to share (keep in mind these are just my thoughts not biblical scholarship).
1 & 2 Samuel chronicle through the life of King David- one of the most notable, famous, and I'm guessing pretty hot pieces of royalty in Bible times. He was promised to be King of Israel when he was really young. I think he killed a giant and won a war fairly 2010 Bieber status. He spent the next few years in this crazy love/hate, chase/kill/don't kill/ make up "frienemy" type thing with King Saul. He spent some time in hiding, and eventually went on to be King of this random city called Hebon. He asked God if thats where he should go, he got the OK, and went and was king there...not the king of the great nation of Israel.. but of this other place... for one ever talks of or seems to care about these early career moves (that lasted 7 years..). 

But taking a minute to think about that: 
 He accomplished something really really great when he was very young and was promised to be king of ISRAEL (that was a huge nation and kinda a big deal). Then we look at him in his twenties and he's king, sure, but of some random place...thats not Israel. 

He was told from a young age that he was special and would accomplish great things, like many of us, but then spent teenage years and more reaching small goals, hitting set backs, running for his life, saving some cities, etc. It wasn't until he was 30 years old that he was crowned king of Israel (something he was promised at like 11? don't fact check me here). He put in a lot of work before his time to shine but all along he held onto character traits I'm needing to be reminded of...

God knew David's plan. David was probably a unicorn from the beginning. But did he just immediately walk into the place that would be his crowning glory? Nope. 

He legit had to wonder if he would LIVE. He spent years fighting and fleeing. And all of this even after being promised greatness. Not only that, he spent 7 years at a mediocre job (in comparison), with multiple struggles, and a lot of hard work.. but he was faithful (and really it would've been easy for anyone else to slack off after being promised a nation, but he didn't). I bet that took patience; and a lot of it.

One thing that stayed constant was that he just straight up asked God what to do with EVERY decision. And even after God answered him once, if the situation came up again (like exact same circumstances), he went to God and would ask for direction again. He had a lot of faith and a lot of patience.
This spoke volumes to me.
Perseverance: when you are and when you are not sure of the end result
 Persistence: continually seeking God's power and direction, even if you think you know it already
Patience: even when its really hard. For my season now, the patience is huge. I am a go-getter and feel that I can persist and pursue through rough conditions but the patience gets me every time. 

So here is my reminder. 
To myself & anyone else that may need one. Pursue patience through your perseverance. And pray. And know you are not alone and a lot of other people are needing, seeking, and searching-- and for now, patience may just be your answer for this season. 

Recipe: Rainbow Carrots & Unicorns (jk... Roasted Egg Plant & Zucchini) 

This is a great way to spice up a plain old vegetable side dish for holidays. And you're bringing something healthy to the typically insanely delicious yet not so health conscious gatherings.

- 1 bag of rainbow carrots
- 1 eggplant
- 1 zucchini
- any other veggies you want to add.. potatoes, squash, artichokes, etc.
- Spices (rosemary, paprika, pepper, garlic salt)
- Cashews
- Cinnamon Roasted Almonds
- Freeze Dried Apple Crisps or Chips

Steam carrots in bag in microwave until soft, then slice. Cut up other veggies into slices. Spray all with coconut oil and place on aluminum foil on baking sheet. Sprinkle with lots of rosemary, paprika, pepper, and garlic salt. Bake on high (450 degrees) for about 20 minutes (flip at the 10 minute mark).  Once everything looks super crispy, remove from oven and place in baking dish. You can layer, or just mix it all together.

Top with crushed cashews. Then sprinkle with crushed apple crisps and honey/cinnamon roasted almonds to add a slightly sweet taste and special spark to your veggies!

Monday, November 2, 2015

This One Time We Played Truth or Dare.. And Now.. We Have This...

" Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works." Hebrews 10:24

TRUTH: Around 70% of my time spent in ALL of my 6-9pm MBA classes was on stylemepretty/pintrest/theknot, etc.. looking at weddings, planning a wedding (that was like 5 years into my future), planning everyone else's wedding.... Visions of peplums, tulle, confetti, and glitter danced in my head. We all thought symptoms of such wedding intoxication would subside with the execution of my own wedding and a life of wedding sobriety would ensue.... I'm now 2.5 years post wedding and I may still have a problem.

TRUTH: I Love Weddings.

So.... I did something about it... Keep reading to find out what...

Ben and I reflect on our wedding and re-live the moments often. I bring out the full videography from ceremony to sparkler exit on our anniversary each year. BUT one of the best tangible memories we have from our once in a lifetime moment is our footage from the Guestbox. 

The Guestbox is a video booth, rented by the event hosts, and set-up for guests entertainment at special events (weddings, proms, retirement parties, graduation parties, corporate events, corporate christmas parties, etc). Everyone wins because after the hilarious moments in the booth are recorded- a montage of footage is pieced together to create a memorable video highlight reel of the best performances. 

Before entering the booth--> the guest picks a TRUTH or DARE card-->they then enter the solitude of the tent, read their chosen task, and perform. 

What happens inside the tent, stays inside the tent---- except it doesn't---at all--and that's where wonderful happens.

We LOVE having this video to share with friends, families, and reminisce on all the amazing people, times, and obvious fun that was had on our special day. It helps that we can't stop laughing uncontrollably every time we watch it.. mainly because it reminds us of each specific friend,  it captures their personalities, and it strengthens our love through the constant memory of how much love and support our marriage has from our friends and family.
We actually loved this service and product so much.. that we decided- it's going to be our first child! We've adopted the Guestbox and have revived the services! 

Our wedding was the final wedding for the Guestbox in 2013 (but there were many before us, we could spend hours watching them all- here) and since it has been "resting" for it's big return to business. The original owners experienced a season of life filled with little humans & another growing business (The Big Fake Wedding), which caused them to halt business at the Guestbox. Ironically, this happened on the brink of popularity in the wedding industry. Check out Buzzfeed's recognition of how unique and awesome this idea is... 

A few other wedding guru's have also seen the potential for mad memory making through a one-of-a kind entertainment opportunity for guests. 
SO! All of this means that... The Guestbox is back in business! We're now booking weddings for 2016! And we couldn't be more excited. We can't wait to invest in each and every couple, company, friend, family member, stranger, ice-cream corporation (please?!) that has interest in including this booth at their next event. 

Marriage is so important-- if our services can help build up marriages through a reminder to be kept forever of the friends, love, family, support, and laughs during this life season- our job is fulfilled. 

People are so important-- don't underestimate the value of a tangible memory of the smiles, jokes, dance moves, confessions, and love shared in moments of hilarity. 

Fun is so important- don't miss opportunities to encourage friends to tell truths, belt it out, share embarrassing stores, and dance like no one is watching (because really no one is.. until the video's released) 

Now here's your DARE: Tell all your friends! Check out MORE videos!! Visit the website! 
Contact us now :)