Thursday, September 12, 2013

Wiping the dust off this ole' blog of mine.

Oh my word.
April y,all. That's the last time I've posted anything on this blog.
I haven't felt the need to write or desire to write or post anything. But today, I do. I have tons of stuff inside and just need to let it out.
There are two specific important people in my life within the past few of years that have looked cancer straight in the face.
Cancer is such a death sentence, I hate it.
The first was my mom's husband Larry, who was my dad in every sense of the word, he died of terminal brain cancer in February 2012. It was a quick and aggressive cancer and was told he had a few weeks to live
Then we come to yesterday. My grandmother, my mom's mom, has been battling cancer for four years now. She told the doctor yesterday she wanted no more further treatment. She is at the end of the cancer road. My mom and she have a consult with Hospice tonight to get that relationship started and we're going to enjoy the rest of the time we have left with her.
Two stories of cancer but one major difference. Our dad faced it with complete peace and rejoiced till the very end until he was face to face with his savior. I can honestly say I have no fear of death after watching him. Absolutely none. It's not the end, but only the beginning. That was the greatest gift he left me.
Then you have my grandma who is deathly afraid to die. She knows where she's going but I believe she's just afraid of the process. It breaks my heart when she makes the comment "I wish I wasn't so afraid to die." I pray peace and strength to her heart and spirit every single day. I think there's a part of all of us that holds a little bit of fear of the unknown when it comes to death. I don't think any of us want to die and wish we could stay here forever. But we are not meant for this world. This is just our temporary home and we're just passing through on the way to where we're going. I thank God every day for hope of eternity spent with him. Eternity, it's what it's all about.
I wish desperately that cancer wasn't the cause of death for people, especially for the ones we love. But our God is SO much bigger than any cancer. But knowing that Heaven brings a cancer-free life and a body that's healed and free from it. Well, there's a whole lot of peace in that.
So if you would, please keep our family in your prayers as we walk this cancer road again with my Grandma. She's a warrior and has fought an amazing fight. She's my hero.
Thank you!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Sweep her off her feet.

As a single gal, this real resonated with me and thought this was so great. Wanted to share.



"He who finds a [true] wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord." Prov 18:22, AMP

Ok single boys and girls, today and tomorrow we are going to focus on you! Specifically, if you’re in your twenties and ready to start thinking about dating and marriage – you have to do it right! Don’t buy into all the pretend love you see in the media or gossip magazines. Relationships, love and marriage are a lot more fun than what you see on TV or in the movies.

Ok guys – here’s what a girl wants. She wants you to sweep her off her feet! All of her life she’s had this crazy dream that she’s Cinderella and one day her Prince Charming would come along and literally sweep her off her feet with the glass slipper. You’d be surprised how easy this is to do! This is not an exhaustive list, but here are a few practical ways to find and pursue the girl of your dreams.


Pray and Be Jesus-Focused: If you want to find an awesome Christian girl and experience a relationship that is blessed by God, you better be a Christian. One of the number one things a Christian girl wants is a real, Jesus-loving, praying, Bible-living, genuine Christian guy who walks the talk. Lots of guys call themselves Christian, but they don’t treat women in a way that honors the Lord. Girls are seriously looking for a guy that is strong in the Lord. Girls don’t want to be the spiritual leader of the relationship and the one who has to initiate conversations on godly things – they want a guy who totally gets it and is on the same page in their passionate pursuit of God. First step: Go after God, then go after the girl.


Ask Her Out: Guys, you have to take the initiative. Girls are responders; boys are initiators. Sure, you can find the type of girls who will hunt you down like prey; but most Christian women want to be pursued by a pursuer! Notice the passage in Proverbs, “A man who FINDS a wife, FINDS a good thing.” You have to find her! That means you are the hunter. That means you call her. You send the email. You text. You ask her out. The worst that can happen is that she’ll say “No” – and that will be her loss. Second step: Find her and get a date.


Be Creative: If you’re trying to win the love of your life, the days of “Let’s just go to dinner and a movie…” have to be shelved. She wants you to put a little more thought into it. Do something fun and different. How about a date at the Zoo? Why not order Chinese take-out and then set up a folding table and chairs in a local boulevard and have your dinner in the middle of traffic? If you want to go to the movies, how about doing a tail-gate party in the parking lot? Sure, set up tent and enjoy some sandwiches and chips before the movie! Plan a Mystery Trip and go to out-of-the-way towns, find the local dive and have dinner; then feed the ducks at a nearby river. You don’t have to spend a lot of money. A drive to see the sunset, a walk through the park, rent a canoe, ride bikes, go visit the elderly in a nursing home, ride the Merry-Go-Round…the list goes on…girls love these things! There are so many ways to spend time together – why settle for something as basic as “dinner and a movie?” Third step: Don’t be predictable or boring.


Learn How To Talk: Boys – this may the best piece of advice yet – girls like to talk! They do not enjoy sitting in silence and staring at a TV, a windshield, a candle or the fun couple at the table next to you that seems to be having so much fun talking to one another. Girls like two-way conversations. As much as they want to hear about everything you have done since birth; they would also like you to ask them a question about their lives. That means you are going to have to become an expert at asking her questions about her and learn how to follow it up with another question about her before you start talking about you, again. They also love to talk about God, life and other interesting and intellectually stimulating things – after that, they don’t mind a little chatting about sports. Fourth step: Talk about God, life, intelligent things and her…and after that feel free to talk about sports.


Bring Gifts: Girls love gifts! It’s not the price tag; it’s the thought. What does your girl like? Flowers are nice, but it’s even better if the gift is customized for her. Show her you’ve been listening to her likes and dislikes and give her a gift for no reason. If she likes Kit-Kat bars, don’t bring a Snickers bar. If orange is her favorite color, make sure your gift is orange! Wrap the gift. Hide the gift. Plant the gift. There are so many ways to give a gift – so have fun. Fifth step: Gifts always work.


Make a Deal: Make a deal to be pure. If you want the Lord’s hand on your relationship, choose to lead the relationship in a way that puts Him first and honors Him and His guidelines. The world tells you that purity is old-school and out of fashion; God tells you that purity is the pathway to the type of relationship the world will drool over. Treat her the way you’d want someone to treat your sister. Respect her. Recently a couple that had just begun dating asked me to be a witness to a contract they had drawn up. The man is an attorney and he wrote up a “legal” contract on their agreement to have a dating relationship that remained pure. I signed the doc and told them I was proud of them for taking the subject of purity so seriously; they told me that they wanted God’s blessing in their relationship and they knew that being held accountable was an important part of it. Sixth step: Keep it pure.

"Father, I thank You that my Prince Charming is out there. I know You are preparing me just for him. I pray You help him today to take the initiative, and at the right time You will help him sweep me off my feet. In Jesus' Name. Amen."

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Wisdom from Audrey.

I saw this and was like whoa.
Never looked at it like this, but how true is it though?
I feel like sometimes I don't give myself enough credit.
It's cool to think that in this world there is no other Lauren Kelly out there. Okay, other people with that name maybe. But I am THE Lauren Kelly, ha... JK! But seriously, no other person has my DNA, my gifts, talents, etc. I have something that only I can offer this world.
That's pretty awesome when you think about it.  And if you're reading this, same goes for you too :)
Have you ever had a desire, dream, or maybe it's even something as simple as you went on Pinterest and wanted to make a craft but thought to yourself "Nah, everyone else can do that but me" or thought to yourself "That's impossible?"
I'm going to admit something right here and now, me and the Kitchen aren't friends. It's sad how little I cook at almost 30 years of age. But you know what, I think it's fear of failing in the kitchen that keeps me from cooking and experimenting in the kitchen and getting myself to love the kitchen and believing that "I'm possible" and that I can cook up a good meal. This might seem insignificant to some, but this is my truth, ha.
I think it's that same fear that kept me in only one year of soccer in high school, instead of just doing it for the fun and to be a part of a team. And not realizing that "I'm possible" even if I never scored one goal that year and was by far probably the least athletic one on the team and still to this day surprised I even tried out.
It's the same fear that has kept me in court reporting school to this day far longer than I should have ever been there for fear of succeeding (Yes, I believe that you can be afraid of success) and believing that "I'm possible" and that I will be the best darn court reporter there is out there.
The examples can go on and on and I'm sure you can insert your own.
I think it's easier to focus on all the stuff that makes up the "Impossible" versus all the great stuff that makes up the "I'm possible."
Anyone feelin' me?

Monday, March 18, 2013


You might have heard the word on the street in the blog world is that google reader is shutting down in July. I loved this as a way to keep up with the blogs I read, so I was bummed when I heard this. But also glad at the same time because I was getting frustrated because there was no way to delete old blogs you may not read anymore or old blogs that the blogger may have shut down and is no longer up.
BUT, I found a great alternative and wanted to share with you about bloglovin.
It's another great and efficient way to keep up with the blogs you love. So I signed myself up and I'm loving it. So don't panic and if you are looking for another alternative other than google reader. Go check out bloglovin. You just might like it!!! (Only downfall is you have to actually go to the blog itself to read the full blog in it's entirety, whereas before you could read the whole blog post in google reader, but the up side is now it's easy to delete blogs as I was mentioning before.)
Follow my blog with bloglovin!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Sister night with Blake Shelton.

This past weekend Blake Shelton was in Florida to play at the Strawberry Festival down in South Florida on Sunday.
Turns out his people contacted a local country music bar in Sanford called the Barn, outside of Orlando, and he wanted to do a surprise FREE concert on Friday night. Um, hello, you will not hear us complain. I live in Sanford, so call this fate if you will. My sister and I were all up on this. Blows my mind that a big name such as Blake Shelton would want to do this, as he never plays bars, but if you're reading this Blake (which the odds of that are like my odds of winning the lotto) THANK YOU!!!!! You made two girls VERY happy!

We made some friends and this was a great photo bomb, ha!

Well, hellllloooooo handsome. Mr. Blake Shelton everybody.
We pretty much had AMAZING spot!

The only thing better would have been if Miranda Lambert were there.
What a fun, fun night. It was such an intimate setting and such great music and did I mention free? Craziness! The Barn was trying to keep it on the down low but hello this is Blake Shelton!!!! So the radio got wind of it and it just kind of blew up. Can't believe he came to our little ole' town.
Come back again anytime, Blake!!!!!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Off the radar.

I was reading this blog post from today over at the Living Proof Ministries blog. One sentence that Beth Moore wrote really stuck out to me…She wrote, “Girlfriend, you ARE very much on his radar.”
I thought about that for a minute to let it sink in.
It’s easy for us to think that we’ve somehow dropped off the radar. That whatever we did, whatever we said, whatever we thought, was grounds for God to say “Sorry, because you did x, y, and z we are finished, I’m done with you, you are officially off my radar,” and shut the door.
That is a far cry from the truth.
It was such a gentle reminder for me.
Or you could look at it like this. You have a single girl, such as myself, she longs to find that one, the one person out there in this world that was meant for her.  The one person in this whole world that God said, “This one, that is the one for Lauren.”
Yet, still she waits for him.
 She sees person after person moving on to the next season of their life, marriage, and some even moving on to become mothers.
Yet, still she waits.
She feels like she dropped off the radar. That the attempts of flinging her hands in the air saying, “God, look at me, look at me. I’m over here.” That those were just failed and unsuccessful attempts at best.
Off the radar, just gone. That somehow he sees everybody else but you.
Oh, he sees me. He sees YOU.
Every desire, every dream, it’s not hidden from him.
Whatever you’ve been crying out to God about, every prayer that you lifted up to him, it’s on his radar, oh very much so.
Its hard for me to fathom, yet so beautiful to think, that I don’t get lost in the sea of people in this world he calls his children. He doesn’t play favorites. He doesn’t see Susie over there, but look over at me and turn a blind eye.
His radar, it’s looking right at me.
And it’s looking at you too.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Throwing away my lenses.

One thing that God has truly been working with me on and dealing in my heart about are the lenses I wear. The only way I know that for a fact is there have been two separate instances recently where people in my own life have addressed this. Can't tell you how many times people have said, "Lauren, why can't you see what I see?"

Hello, Lord.

We all have a set of lenses, and what I mean by lenses is the lenses in which we view ourselves; what we see versus what other people see. Oh my goodness, I’m to the point where I want to break my lenses in half and toss them in the trash. See, the thing is, our lenses are ALWAYS different than others and how they perceive us. We, as humans, and especially women, find it so hard to see the value and worth in ourselves and what others see in us.

The truth of the matter is, with social media these days; it’s so easy to hide behind it. My hope and desire is that what you see on social media is what you would see of me in real life and hope to be authentic. But if I were being truthful, I feel freer behind social media ….. and when it comes to face-to-face social interaction, I hold back. I recognize that, and I HATE it. I’ve realized why that is….. When you step out from behind the devises of social media and really have to put yourself out there, you are required to be more vulnerable and you open yourself up to be judged and rejected.

I hope I’m making some sort of sense here. But I often fail to realize I have some much to offer this world, so much value and worth that I somehow can’t always seem to see in myself. And rather than embracing that, it’s easier to shrink back.

I truly feel like I’m rambling here, but bear with me.

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our own light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?  You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn’t serve the world. There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. You were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within you. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we consciously give other people the permission to do the same. As we’re liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others. “

I think this quote adequately describes what I’m trying to put into words.
Lord, help me each day see what you see in this girl. Help me to realize that my worth and value is found in you and you alone. I pray that here on out, each day I will learn to love myself more and more; every part of me. Take every doubt and insecurity and replace it with self-acceptance, appreciation for who you created me to be and that means ALL of me. I’m a child of yours and you love your children and therefore, I will learn to love me despite what I think my flaws might be. Thank you for Lauren, thank you for me.

And if you're reading this and you struggle in this area, I hope your prayer is the same... Just substitute your name :)

Monday, March 4, 2013

Exhibit A and B.

Happy Monday! 
I was looking through my phone at pictures I have taken within the last couple of weeks or so.
I came to one final conclusion.
Exhibit A:

One weekend you'll find yourself at Disney World.

Exhibit B:

The next weekend, beautiful South Florida in February.


Need I say more?
I sure do love this place I call home.

What's your favorite thing about home?

Thursday, February 28, 2013

At the edge of the cliff.

You know that cliff moment in your life? I’m sure we’ve all had them.

It’s that moment where you’re on the edge of the cliff. You’re just standing there saying, “Lord, what next?”

I feel like I’ve been at that particular point for awhile. It’s like I’m just standing, standing, and standing there looking at the waters below and not knowing what they hold and scared out of my ever lovin’ mind.

I have some pretty big life changes coming up here soon.

I’m excited and scared all in one.

But now, it’s my time.
It’s my time to dive into those waters.
Because something tells me it will hold some pretty great stuff.

Monday, February 25, 2013

I couldn't do it.

I couldn't do it.
I couldn't officially hit the delete button on this blog.
Writing, it is my passion.
You see, any card I'll give to someone, you'll find that I can fill the whole thing up with words. Back in school, signing a yearbook, I could fill up a whole page with more than just "see you next year, have a good summer."
Words, I love them.
My writing, it means something to me. I think about my words. I think about how they will impact somebody and what they will mean to a person. I realize that words stay with you longer than most anything else. They have the power to build up or tear down. They can bring such joy to the heart.
Words, they are powerful, oh so powerful.
Writing is how I express myself and it comes so naturally to me. Writing allows me to express myself and be myself in the purest and truest form I know how. It allows me to get down to the deepest parts of my heart with the tap of a keyboard or hitting the pen to paper.
Just a couple of days ago AGAIN had a friend say (and have been told this MANY times) "Lauren, you need to write a book, and you need to submit, submit, submit, until you get that thing published." And can't tell you how many times people have told me, "Lauren, you have such a way with words."
I deleted this blog about a month ago. When you delete a blog, it's not fully deleted until a certain amount of days and then it's gone for you to never get back again. I was in the shower washing my hair this morning and all the sudden I had this urgency and thinking to myself, "Lauren, you fool, what are you thinking? Get that blog back NOW!"
So I race to get done with my shower, and in my towel and I'm dripping wet rush to my computer to make sure this blog is still here. I took a deep breath realizing it still was.
This blog for me is no longer about the traffic it gets, the amount of comments, followers, etc. It means so much more than that to me now. Funny thing is I had a dream last night and God has already given me a title for this book. Who knows if and when it will ever be published, but this has given me a whole new excitement and passion for writing.
I feel like I'm back to the true intent of why I should be blogging.

I need this blog, just didn't realize how much until now.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Shutting it down.

I'm not going to be all dramatic, but the title speaks for itself. At the end of the week, this blog will be no more.

Just out of respect for those that have and are reading, just didn't want to disappear and not say anything and that be that.

There are multiple reasons for this. Too many to get into, ha! But if you'd like to keep in touch, you can jot down my email that is on the right hand side of my blog.

For those of you who have read my blog and are currently reading my blog and click over to keep up with little ole' me, thank you for that and I love you for it.

This blog was a special and unique part of my life and the friendships I made through this little space of the internet will be a huge part of what I take away from this.

I hope that each of you could take something away from this blog, my words, and my heart and pray that it always came across in the way I intended.

May God bless you ALL abundantly...


Monday, January 7, 2013

Biggest Loser Blogger Challenge: Week 1

Out of all the posts I have written, this is one of the ones I’m most excited and proud of.
It’s a new year. The slate is clean. With the new year it seems to make the impossible seem possible with the 365 days ahead of you.
One of the things I’ve always struggled with is body image. Not in a huge way but enough to where I didn’t/don’t feel comfortable in my own skin.
When January 1st rolled around I was already getting myself mentally prepared to make a change. So that’s when I was excited to see that my friend Becky was doing the Biggest Loser Blogger  Challenge (click here) January-March. It’s just the motivation I needed.

I wanted to post a motivation picture.
This was taken within the last year.
Please realize that this is a horrible picture of me and focus on the niece, ha!! The beach = no makeup for me. But this was the best picture that depicts where I am at right now. Can't believe I'm doing this. My Mom took this and I remember at the time when we went scrolling through the camera to look at pictures I was mortified, but was never at the place mentally to make a difference.

Time to make a change.
My current weight I’ll share is 130. Nothing drastic....but there is obesity on my dad's side of the family and with my short height of 5’2” weight gain is noticeable and have a few things recently I cannot fit into that I’m determined I will again and just don't want to let myself go there. Whether you just want to take your body back and feel more comfortable or a drastic weight change, regardless it's your journey.
So in sharing that… here’s what I’ll be doing this week for food throughout the week and exercise and wanted to track it here each Monday and document my progress... As it's a part of the challenge. I have about 10-15 pounds I would like to lose. I may or may not meet my weight loss goal by finish, but it will be a heck of a start.

For Breakfast- Eggs with avacado and breakfast bars.

For lunch – Tuna with wheat thins and salad

Dinner – Healthy sandwiches, apples w/ peanut butter

Snacks- Bananas, oranges, nuts, fruits, rice cakes, avocado, bell peppers/cucumbers with ranch
Of course all this is subject to change and not the same thing everyday, but I'll be switching it up each day. Might add/subtract but the goal is for it to ALL be healthy. If you have any other good quick meals for a person on the go or want to share healthy snack options, please share.

  I wanted to add that with my schedule I work full time and go to school three nights a week. So very easy to eat on-the-go and pick up that hamburger or French fries. But that’s all going to change. Also, my goal is to also not eat so late, but to eat on my way to school or while I’m at school. Got in such a bad habit of eating when I got home. Another goal is to stop eating when I’m satisfied vs. still eating while I’m full. And I snack on complete junk, enough said. Also, the fact I have a 8-5 desk job and sit all day and sit all night at school is not working in my favor... just sayin!
Also, I’ve quit soda and I'm drinking water. Haven’t had it since December 31st. I’ve cut out sweets and pasta/carbs as well. And of course I’ll treat myself on the weekends.

Monday, Wednesday, and Friday I will be doing the c25k workout program. You can download the app. on your Iphone. I actually started this before and so last week I started at week 3 because I already had a foundation. Of course these days could vary throughout the week, but I’ll always put in 3 days of this. This morning I started at week 4, day 1. Also, every Saturday I will be doing Zumba class.
I feel this is a good start though.
Again, any helpful tips will be appreciated.
If you’re wanting to make a change like me, please go by Becky’s blog and join us.
I’m so excited about this and what a great way to keep me accountable.

So here's to my journey to taking my body back, eating healthier, and feeling better in my skin.

Not looking to win this thing, but just a start to being healthier.
Wish me luck!!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

New Year...New Me.

Happy New Year…..

We are three days into the New Year. I’ve been kind of going over in my head what I want this blog to mean to me in 2013 and the roll I want it to play.

I really want to be more intentional about blogging this year. I have a deep urging that it’s important for me this year. I feel deep down that this year isn’t going to be just another ordinary year. I truly and honestly believe it’s going to be “MY” year.

It will be the year I take back my body. Starting January 1, 2013, I started the c25k running program. I started it once before but don’t think I was where I needed to be at mentally to follow through with it. I’m logging my workouts on instagram for accountability. Also, starting January 1, 2013, I stopped drinking soda. It’s only 3 days without soda, so ask me in about a month how my withdrawal is going, ha. And again, this is something else I’ve also tried but could never do it. I’ve realized that you have to “want”  it in order to follow through with anything. I need to take care of the body and temple God has given me and it starts with watching the food I eat and what I’m putting into my body and exercise. I really feel like I have the mentality, determination, and the faith in myself that I can actually do it this time.  

I am currently on break from school right now and will be starting back next week to finish up my last semester. It’s been a long journey and court reporting school has been one of the hardest things I’ve ever done in my life. But I’m seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, and praise God he’s been faithful to see me through to the END. For the first time in a long time I'm excited for what the future holds and the doors and opportunities that will be opened up to me and the people I’ll meet once I get out into the career field and out from behind a 8-5 desk job that I needed to leave like yesterday, but with that said, praise God I have a job.

Spiritually, I pray that 2013 will be the year I draw closer to God like never before. I want to seek him first in all that I do. I know I can’t do any of this without him and that starts with staying in his word and grounded in him. I am his child and I want to spend 2013 going deeper into discovering the depths of his love for me so that I, in return, can go and love others and love well and be the best daughter, sister, friend, etc.... but most of all to be the best Lauren I can be. There is so much work yet to be done in me. God knows my struggles. I don't think he's ever done perfecting us.

I began to think about what my word for 2013 could be that I can hold on to, reflect on, and instantly the word “Acceptance” came to my mind.
Accepting God’s love for me, accepting how God created me to be, accepting myself, accepting God’s will for my life and that his ways are not always my ways. Oh that list could go on and on.
This is a good start.
A new year, a new me.
And hopefully I can spend 2013 blogging all about it :)