A Mid-Week Weekend

I didn’t think I’d have to come to Mississippi to see snow, but it’s true! For the past 2 days, we’ve been off school and work for some amazing SNOW DAYS! It’s been so much fun to have this extra time as a family to spend together.  The kids had NEVER seen snow before… and they had the best time! They both kept saying, ‘I can’t believe it!”..haha.  This will be a time they never forget.  The first winter in Mississippi and their first time seeing snow.  

I don’t think we were on our cell phones hardly at all the past two days, which is kinda big for us.  We tend to spend way too much time on those things! It was so refreshing to have family time instead.  We played for hours in the show, watched movies, had popcorn, ate birthday cake (I finally baked MY birthday cake), had a slumber party, had pancakes for breakfast, had snow ball fights with the neighbors, built things with lego’s, enjoyed a homemade mexican fiesta dinner, and had lots and lots of laughter and fun! Feeling SO THANKFUL for that gift of time we wouldn’t normally have during the week!

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We are all excited because now we only have to go to work and school on Friday and then we have two days off again! Hooray! 

The Friendship Ministry : Revisited

The Friendship Ministry : Our Nesting Place Blog
One of my goals for 2015 is to be a better friend and to build better friendships.  Out of that desire to be a better friend, I came up with something that I currently call THE FRIENDSHIP MINISTRY.  

I want to invest TIME into my friends and my friendships.  I feel like I’m so busy sometimes and I know that my friendships suffer from that.  I want to be the type of friend who is thoughtful, and caring, and loving.  I want to do things for my friends, and not do it for praise, but do it out of love for that person.  God just wants us to LOVE each other, and I think that if I show my friends this type of love – they will (hopefully) pay it forward to their other friends, who will hopefully pay if forward to THEIR other friends, and so on.  When I think about the possibility of people making an effort and investing LOVE and time into their friendships, I can’t help but think about how much love would surround us all.  

There are two ways to go about this.  Two “speeds” I guess you could say.  Starting out, you may not have a lot of time to devote to something like this or have the resources (money) to spend, but you still want to participate.  You can take 5 minutes out of your day and be a part of The Friendship Ministry.  

Here is how : The Friendship Ministry for those low on time or resources

First, download the planning sheet : The Friendship Ministry – Limited Time and Resource Version

Next, you may already know of someone that you could be a blessing to.  You may know of someone struggling, or someone who’s going through tough times.  Or, you may know someone who just graduated, or had a baby, or got married, or moved, etc.  If you can’t think of someone but you want to be involved, take about 10 minutes and write down the names of your friends.  Some close friends, some who you don’t know very well.  Place all of those names into a jar.  PRAY about it and ask God to choose the person HE would like you to bless.  Whatever name you choose, that’s your person.  If this is someone you wouldn’t normally choose for yourself, don’t be intimidated! God has a plan! 

For 2 weeks pray for that person everyday.  That’s it.  Take 5 minutes to pray over them and ask God to just bless them so much that they can barely stand it.  Towards the end of those two weeks, take the time to either send them a little goodie basket or a card or SOMETHING and let that person know that you have been praying for them.  Send them an encouraging note and explain what The Friendship Ministry is.  Ask them to in turn, pass this idea / blessing along to one of their friends.  I have a feeling that once those two weeks are over, you’re going to be blessed just as much as they are.  

If you’ve tried that route for a while and want to take it a step further, or if you’re in the mood to just start full force, here is another way you can participate :

First : Download The Friendship Ministry Planning Sheet

Who will I pray for : – Pick a few friends and make a point to pray for them everyday.  Thank God for them, and pray for any needs they may have .. known or unknown to you.  You may know of some friends who DO definitely need your prayers, or you may not know of anyone who’s really struggling at this time.. so pick some people that maybe you wouldn’t normally think to pray for.. and make a point to pray for those people everyday during that month.  

Who will I encourage, uplift, and inspire : If you notice any of your friends are down or struggling or asking for help, be there to build them up, to squash the lies Satan may be telling them, and to remind them how important they are to you and to God.  Do they have a dream they are trying to fulfill? Are they working towards a goal? Have they started a new venture? Commend them for a job well done so far.  Let them know that they are an inspiration to you, as well as others, and you are cheering them on.  Sometimes knowing that others are cheering for you is all the motivation you need to be more creative, push harder, and accomplish those goals.    

Compliment and Congratulate them : make a point to compliment a couple friends at least once per week.  You’re making one of their recipes for dinner – shoot them a text letting them know how much you enjoy their recipe and that you think of them everytime you make it.  You notice they have a new haircut, message them personally and let them know how AWESOME it looks on them.  Someone had a new baby, or got married, or engaged, or graduated, or a new job – the list goes on.  Send them a card in the mail congratulating them.. they will love that thoughtful gesture so much!

Celebrate their birthday : do more than just say “HAPPY BIRTHDAY” on Facebook (because it reminded you to) … look ahead into the month ahead and see who’s birthdays are coming up.  Make a point to send them a birthday card, or a starbucks gift card, or something FUN and festive and THOUGHTFUL.  It’s so much more fun to see “Happy Birthday” written on something you can hold and keep.  

Surprise them : pick one or two people per month and do something thoughtful for them..out of the blue.  Do they have a favorite candy you know about? Send them some! Do you know they’re getting ready to make a trip somewhere? Send them a little travel goody box! It doesn’t have to be expensive, even just sending them a handwritten note out of the blue would make them feel special and loved! Unexpected surprises are the BEST, am I right? Think of those you’d like to bless and do it! 

Thank you notes : writing thank you notes to those who have done things for you during the month are such an easy and thoughtful way to say “THANK YOU”.  Going that little extra mile, putting in the effort, to write out THANK YOU and some nice words can really brighten someones day.. and, they may even be motivated to bless someone else because they know YOU appreciated the blessing they gave to you.  

The main thing I want to do, is LEAD BY EXAMPLE.  Be the friend you want others to be to you.  Start a legacy of kindness and be someone who puts value on your friendships.  Others will want to be like you, they will pass it on to their friends in return.  Imagine a world where friends were constantly praying for each other, encouraging each other, building each other up, inspiring each other, complimenting each other, congratulating each other, celebrating each other, and making them feel loved “just because”.  The blessings would absolutely overflow. 

For more FREE PRINTABLES to go along with The Friendship Ministry, click HERE.  New printables are added quite often! AND, if you have one in mind you’d like to see, don’t hesitate to let me know! I will add it! 

If you are willing to participate in The Friendship Ministry, PLEASE let me know so I can see how you’re blessing others! We can all get ideas and inspiration and motivation from each other.  Tag any posts with #thefriendshipministry 

 

Don’t Try to Figure Out What’s Happening ..

Whew! I’m having one of “those weeks”, and it’s only Tuesday.  Seems pretty cruel, doesn’t it? I feel like my week has been a big ball of frustration and stressful situations.  I’ve tried so desperately to seek the meaning for my troubles (that may seems so small, but sometimes small things feel so big). It just seems like the worst possible timing for a lot of it. 

A rolling pin that I haven’t used in probably 2 years or seen in 6 months fell out of my upper kitchen cabinet right onto my new iPhone yesterday, and I do believe it’s a goner.  I cried when it happened.. all I could see were dollar signs going out the window.  THANKFULLY that phone was free, but I know my next phone won’t be.  But anyways.. life goes on.  I have told a couple friends today that I feel like everything happens for a reason, and I was just trying to wrap my head around the REASON my phone needed to be shattered.  Especially right now, when I feel like I actually REALLY need it.  Was it satan trying to really get to me and cause unwanted stress? Or, what is God because I asked Him to help me be less dependent on my cell phone?  If it WAS God, completely destroying it wasn’t really what I had in mind, but maybe that’s what needed to happen to make me fully understand what it means to be less dependent on my cell phone.  I know that He will provide for us and that I will get another phone in the future, but this time – maybe I will do better about not being on it sooooo much.  I wanted to focus on what REALLY matters, right? I’m pretty much forced to now.. ;)

Today I had Shelby’s car, because he is using mine this week, and as usual I parked in my parking lot with my staff tag – which had been taken off of my car.  I went down for lunch, and I had a warning ticket on my windshield because I had a student AND staff tag on my car.   Doesn’t really make much sense, but whatever.  I had to leave my spot, and when I came back on campus I had to park in a different lot that wasn’t really for my staff tag OR Shelby’s student sticker.  I prayed that my car just wouldn’t get a ticket, and that next time I’d park in Shelby’s student lot and walk across campus.  I came out after work to a ticket-free car, and a promise to keep that I will park in Shelby’s lot and walk across campus..haha.  Is it satan causing me to stress over the extra minutes that it’s going to take to walk across campus on top of having to take both kids to school tomorrow morning .. causing me to more than likely be late? OR, is it God making me take that extra walk across campus because I asked for some more alone time with Him? 

I think my devotional from Jesus Calling is a perfect explanation of what’s happening this week : Approach this day with awareness of who is Boss. As you make plans for the day, remember that it is I who orchestrate the events of your life. On days when things go smoothly, according to your plans, you may be unaware of My sovereign Presence. On days when your plans are thwarted, be on the lookout for Me! I may be doing something important in your life, something quite different from what you expected. It is essential at such times to stay in communication with Me, accepting My way as better than yours. Don’t try to figure out what is happening. Simply trust Me and thank Me in advance for the good that will come out of it all. I know the plans I have for you, and they are good.

Can I just take a moment to say “Thank you, God”?   Thank you for giving me some insight to what’s going on lately, thank you for reminding me to seek YOU in times of stress or frustration, thank you for always knowing what’s best for me, even when it upsets me or causes me inconvenience.  

“Don’t try to figure out what’s happening” .. OK, God.  I trust you and I THANK YOU in advance for the good that will come out of it all.  

What’s For Dinner?

WEEKLY MENUIt’s that time again! I love having my menu planned out for the coming week.. it just helps things FLOW so much smoother at home.  

Here is my menu for this upcoming week (Monday – Sunday) It’s kinda boring.. and somewhat of a repeat from last week. What’s on YOUR menu this week?!

Monday 1/12 : Grilled Chicken Salad with Black Beans & Veggies – I like to marinade my chicken in something yummy and grill it up, toss it on my salad, and I’m good to go! I need to work on better salad fixin’s to add to it!

Tuesday 1/13 :  Chicken Tortilla Soup

Wednesday 1/14 : Leftover Chicken Tortilla Soup

Thursday 1/15 : Beef & Broccoli with Brown Fried Rice

Friday 1/16 : Leftover Beef & Broccoli with Brown Fried Rice

Saturday 1/17 : Roast with Veggies (I use onions, sweet potatoes, carrots, white potatoes (for my family) and I make gravy for Shelby.  I may make some rice for Shelby & the kids)

Sunday 1/18 : Leftover Roast with Veggies – I MIGHT turn this in to a “beef stew” if I’m feeling frisky .. 

If I have a recipe, I’ve linked it in the post for you to check out yourself!  If there is no link but you’re curious about a certain meal – feel free to email me [ miratucci at gmail dot com] ! I have no secrets with my eating and am more than happy to share with anyone who’s interested!

I’d love to hear what YOU are having!!! Have a wonderful week!