Guest Post

Dear Mama // A Guest Post

We are thrilled to be bringing you another guest post this week by our friend Grace Allen.

Dear Mama,

I am writing this to you as your friend, as a fellow woman, and a fellow mama myself. I am writing these words that lie ahead because these are the words that I at some point or another needed to hear myself. Some of these words are going to be hard for me to write, and others will flow so quickly and easily off of my fingertips, and for that, I ask that you be patient with me, and put all judgment aside as you read.

I am going to start by saying this: from the very depths of my heart there is no single thing that brings me more joy, or makes me more proud, than to be a mother. It is hands down the reason that God created me, I just know it. What I also know is that I am human, I am a young, educated, full of life and need for adventure woman with needs of her own–that aren’t met nearly as often as they were prior to being “mama.” Maybe you can relate, and maybe you’re already sitting at your computer, or phone, judging me… but, thats okay, because before I was a mother, I judged too. Really freaking hard, if we are being open and honest. I judged the mama I saw out to eat with girlfriends while her kid sat in a highchair watching some kind of something on a screen as I swore to myself my child would never watch TV (Luca has his own iPad that is fully stocked with every single episode of Blaze and The Monster Machines and we go NO WHERE without it), I judged the mama that I saw drinking a glass of wine while her newborn baby slept (you already know how I feel about this one– bring on the red wine), I judged the mama that dropped her kids off in the Godforsaken kid’s room so that she could workout, because “germs” (I’ve been scouring the internet for a studio with childcare so that I can attend barre, all while I expose my children to “germs”)

The March of Time // A Guest Post

Today we have the honor of sharing a guest post written by our friend Gia Wallace.

My youngest is a New Year's baby (almost). Sam the man, as he's called, was born on January 2nd, five years ago. As he and I discussed this milestone, he asked me, "Are you sad you have 'none' babies anymore?". As if the calendar changing from 17 to 18 wasn't enough to remind me, my now five year old was reminding me too: time never stops marching on.

I've never been one to fear aging. I've always been an old soul, so for me aging was like taking steps to get closer to who I am. Staying in on a Saturday night? Yes, please! Watching HGTV instead of MTV? You had me at shiplap. So I was a bit surprised when 2017 brought about a new insecurity of getting old. I had never really worried about it much before. But now, with my gray hairs reflected in the mirror, it suddenly began to sting. And as I watched 2018 march on in, I began to dread it. So I decided to spend a lot of time reflecting why I'm suddenly sad for the new year. Why does getting older now seem like a necessary evil? And I found my answer in my Mom.

Motherhood is a Hot Mess

Real talk: we've all been there at one time or another as moms. We've all had AT LEAST one "hot mess" moment! When you are in the middle of these moments, you can feel like you are the only mom in the entire world who can't get it together, the only mom driving her own personal struggle bus. But you aren't, trust us! We both have so many stories to share and so do 99% of other moms. We are sharing our own hot mess stories today as well as those from some other mama friends. So, the next time you find yourself in a hot mess moment, remember this post and know that you're not alone! Laugh it off and pour yourself a glass of wine when you get home!

Hannah

I had to take Porter to his 3 year check up at the doctor three weeks after Gibson was born. First of all, trying to find clothes that "fit" and don't make you feel like a busted can of biscuits right after you have a baby makes for a stressful morning. Especially while functioning on minimal sleep and also trying to get three kids out the door by myself. We had to go drop Evan off at preschool on the way to the doctor, and I was almost there when I realized I forgot to stuff the nursing pads I had laid out on the counter back into my bra (in case you haven't breastfed a baby before, this is absolutely not ok when you have a 3 week old. Massive leakage was a common occurrence for me in the early days). There was no time to turnaround and go back home at this point. I frantically dug through my diaper bag. No luck. I texted Courtney praying she had some in her bag and could meet me after we got the kids dropped off. No luck there either. I legit tried to rip a diaper in half (big fail) and stuff it in my bra when I found some panty liners jammed in the back of my wallet. So yes, I was the mom sticking panty liners in her shirt in the carpool line. But at least I wouldn't have to deal with an embarrassingly soaking wet shirt at the doctor's office, right?

Courtney

When Atlee was a newborn and I was in the trenches of figuring out life with two little ones, one of my most mortifying hot mess moments happened. It was like any normal day; house was a mess, I was going on very little sleep, wearing breastmilk stained clothing, doing my best to juggle the eating demands of a very hungry newborn and giving attention to a toddler who just wanted some mommy time. I was sitting on the couch nursing Atlee and trying to build mega blocks with Copeland with my free hand when the doorbell rang. I usually don't answer the door when I am nursing, but on this particular day, the person on the other side was not going away so after several obnoxious rings and knocks, I got up to answer the door. I opened it to find the FedEx guy standing there with a package that needed a signature confirmation. From the second I opened the door, I noticed an embarrassed look on the guy's face but didn't think much of it. I proceeded to take the package, sign for it, thank him, and close the door all the while the FedEx guy was doing everything he could not to look at me (I figured I just looked rough because #newbornlife). As I went to turn back to my living room, I looked down and realized what had caused the bewildered look on that poor guy's face; my huge, engorged, leaky, exposed boob. Apparently, in my rush to get to the door, I didn't think to cover myself, giving the delivery guy a peep show that he didn't bargain for. To this day, I will not open our door for the FedEx truck (unless I HAVE to sign for something) out of sheer embarrassment that it's going to be the same guy from that day. Moral of the story: boob check before opening the front door!

Candace

A conversation with my son Titus while doing his homework:

Me: put your name at the top Titus: okay *writes* T-I-T-S Me: *looks down swallows laughter & tries to act my age. Downplays shock.* You misspelled your name silly. Titus: oh whoops, I forgot the "U". Me: yup, just add it in (trying to move it along). Titus: well what's that spell mommy?...  is it TIGHTS?! Me: *cuts him off* yup, TIGHTS. That says TIGHTS. Titus: *sounding it out* nope, it doesn't says TIGHTS mom. It says TITS. Me: ... okay Titus: yeah, it's TITS. Me: OKAY SON STOP SAYING THAT AND ADD THE "U" Titus: what's wrong?.... Me: *dying laughing* Titus: Mommy, why are you taking a picture?

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Follow along for more hilarious stories from Candace:

Blog: www.makingmetoo.com Insta: @makingmetoo FB: Facebook.com/makingmetoo

Meredith

"Mom Fails". We all have them, and during those moments you freak out and think you're the only one. So here it goes...My son Brody was about a year and a half old, and we were vacationing with some friends in Orange Beach. My oldest child Kelsey came with me. So it was just the three of us. We were in an elevator with our friends and just chatting, and we all hopped off. Well...except one! I was so busy talking that I forgot to grab my little boy's hand and escort him OFF the elevator. This is my biggest "mom fail" -- losing your child. How could I? We all divided up and started running up and down stairs and screaming to find him. Thankful and blessed, he was found a few flights of stairs up. A lady heard us, and she grabbed him and was holding him for me. Let's talk about a full emotional rollercoaster I was on for what felt like forever, but was maybe only fifteen minutes.

I tell myself all the time, learn from those "fails" and grow from them. Stay strong mamas -we are all in this together.

You can check out SFT and more of Meredith's life here:

Blog: www.shopsft.com/blogs/lifestyle Insta: @shopsft FB: facebook.com/shopsft

Blake

Back when my eldest was little (6 months old-ish),  we went through a phase where every single dirty diaper was a blowout. I’m talking up to her neck in crap, we’ve got to clean the car seat, blow out. One week in particular it was especially bad. We had to leave church due to the epic blowout she had, and I was running out of back up clothes in her diaper bag. I decided to brave a run to Costco (I feel like I should mention that we lived completely on the opposite side of Baton Rouge at the time). We got all the way there and discovered that she had another gigantic blow out, and that I had used all our back up clothes in the last one. Frustrated and over it, I decided not to take her into Costco in just her diaper and headed back home.

We pull in the driveway, and when I go to retrieve her, I’m met with her sweet, smiling self on all fours in her car seat. I’d forgotten to buckle her back in at Costco. I’d just driven all the way down the highway, across Baton Rouge with my child unrestrained in the back seat. Thankfully we were safe and I can laugh about it now, but talk about a hot mess!

Keep up with Blake's adventures (trust us, you want to be following her! She's one of our best friends!) here:

Blog: 

www.thegirlnamedblake.com

Instagram:

@thegirlnamedblake

Alexa

So it was Leo’s last day of preschool before the summer break began. I had been holding on to a Sephora gift card my husband had given me as a Valentine’s Day present. I decided to venture to the mall with my baby girl, strapped her in the stroller and headed straight for Sephora. She nodded off seconds into our stroll, so I grabbed my car seat cover in hopes she would nap for the rest of our shopping trip. I started to browse the various sections of Sephora. This store is completely foreign to me. I know next to nothing about makeup and my skincare regimen is fulfilled by drugstore aisles. I’m sure I looked totally lost, so when the Sephora employee approached me I expected her to simply offer me some guidance.

Instead, she said, “Ma’am, is there something dripping from your bag?” As always, I went straight into panic mode. I quickly recalled every item I knew was in my diaper bag, only to remember that the only liquid in there was water for Ava’s bottles. I replied, “No, I don’t think so. I only have a bottle of water in there.” She then pointed to the floor and referred to a yellow trail that traced my exact path. She asked, “Maybe the baby?” Talk about PANIC. In hopes to disregard the conversation entirely and make an extremely urgent exit from the store, I said, “Nope, she’s sleeping away.” But for some reason, some very stupid reason, I raised the car seat cover rather than heading for the exit. My precious Ava girl stared up at me with an especially pleasant sparkle to her eye and I then saw it... a very large, very odorous yellow puddle of liquefied baby poop. It had puddled so bad that it leaked out of her diaper, through the crevices of her car seat, into the cracks of the stroller, and down to the floor.

“Oh my word, I am so so sorry. I had no idea.” Those were the only words I could get out before I was out of Sephora and in a frantic search for JC Penney’s restroom. I circled the top floor of the department store at least ten times before finding the restroom behind the curtain section. BEHIND THE CURTAIN SECTION. WHO PUTS A RESTROOM THERE?

I handled the situation like every other explosive diaper. I wiped Ava down with my baby wipes and changed her outfit; thank goodness I remembered a backup onesie that day. I did my best to clean the car seat and laid her blanket down for a (thin) barrier between the mess and her sweet skin. There was zero chance of me heading back to Sephora, I was literally mortified. If you have ever been there then you know the store is always so wonderfully clean and beautifully scented. The products themselves are high-end and the employees are very well kept. My sweet girl had just dripped putrid yellow poop all over their floor. I had forfeited my shopping trip for the day.

And the best part? It was time to head to Leo’s preschool for pickup. Another wasted minute and I would have been late on the last day of school. No time for lunch, no time for Ava to bathe, no time for the car seat to hit a wash cycle. My car wreaked the entire drive there and back. The thought of my girl laying in that mess made me cringe the entire trip. But just like any rough mom moment, we made it through.

Keep up with Alexa's spicy life here:

Blog: alexaperez.com Insta: @lexavictoria

Courtney

I was up feeding Blaire at around 2 or 3 in the morning, laid her on my lap and snap chatted a picture of her cute face with a caption; something along the lines of "Why the *BLEEP* is she awake?" (Jokes, sort of.) Anyways, the next morning, I checked my phone and had like 14 snapbacks, a few texts and a missed call. Everyone informing me that my boob was totally showing in the snap chat! I went back and looked, and no joke, it was there, clear as day. When I laid her on my lap after feeding her, I failed to pull my shirt down before taking the picture. You guys, 124 people saw this snapchat!!!! I am MORTIFIED and will never be able to look those 124 people in the eyes ever again. Currently contemplating between whether I should save this for her senior yearbook picture, or moving away and changing my identity.

Follow along with this new mama here:

Blog: www.sharpcelebrations.org Insta: @sharpcelebrations FB: facebook.com/sharpcelebrations

Girls, we are cracking up laughing at these. Thanks to these amazing mamas who were willing to share some of their hard and embarrassing moments with us. We hope you enjoyed them, too! If you have any hot mess stories you'd like to send me, I would love to hear from you! Leave them in the comments or email me at coldcoffeehotmess@gmail.com. I'd love to feature your story in my next "Motherhood is a Hot Mess" post.

Chosen // a guest post

Today I am happy to share my first ever guest post, written by Nancy Morgan.

Chosen. We all want to be chosen for something. We are the kid on the playground that wasn't chosen. We are the child that the parent didn't choose, the teenager that wasn't the one chosen by the cute popular boy, the wife whose husband didn't choose them, the friend who feels she wasn't chosen by her friends, the parent who wasn't chosen by her kids, the employee who wasn't chosen for the job or promotion. The list can go on and on.

For most of my life I have longed to "feel" chosen. It started at an early age. I felt if my dad could have chosen a child he would have chosen a boy or a well-version of my older sister. I felt like my mom chose to die and be with my sister instead of living and being with me. My dad chose a life without me. The first recollection I have of being chosen is by Gammah (my grandmother). She took me when I felt no one else wanted me. She loved me. Then she died. And the need to be chosen started over again.

At sixteen my dad dropped me off at a friend's and told me he'd be back on Sunday, and he never showed up. He chose a different life and not me. That began the downward spiral of my teens and well into most of my life. I desperately wanted to be chosen, to feel chosen. And I made some mistakes searching for "chosen".

I entered into relationships, both romantic and friendly just to be chosen. I chased the wrong people and the wrong things begging them to choose me. I went into an explosive marriage thinking eventually he would choose me. I held on to this marriage while I still chased others and other things, hoping and praying someone, anyone would choose me. And I thought that whoever chose me, that's where I would stay. At the end of this marriage I rushed into a relationship looking for the same thing and soon started to realize that this cycle had to end.

I've known God my whole life, but I've not always let Him in and let Him speak to me. I've blocked Him out so many times. But He started working on me without me realizing it. I started to see that my happiness is not found in a man, a friendship, a parent, a job, or myself. I started to see that no matter what turn this relationship went that I would be okay. I would be more than okay. I would survive.

I started to trust. I started to trust God. I started to see what could happen if I let God into my emotions.

Over that last 3 years I've learned to love and be loved. I learned who I am in my Savior Christ Jesus. I am learning I have a Father; a Heavenly Father who chose me before I was formed in my mother's womb.

He loves me so much that He knows everything about me - even how many hairs are on my head (Luke 12:7).

I am worthy of being chosen because I am fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14).

He knows every heartache, every hurt, every tear I have ever cried (Psalm 56:8).

My Father loves me so much that He sent His only Son so that I can be saved and live a whole life (John 3:16).

I've learned that I have a forever friend. A best friend. His name is Jesus. He has suffered everything I have and He chose to suffer for my sins and mistakes so that I can be made whole.

I have the Holy Spirit who is a blanket to me. The Holy Spirit wraps me in peace and the realization that I am never alone.

Over the last several months I have seen that I have been chosen from before I was born. I was adopted into a family, and we do share blood - the blood of Christ. I am accepted just the way I am. I don't have to look a certain way or say special words. I have been redeemed. All the mistakes I've made, all the wrong choices I've made...I've been forgiven. I am blessed.

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Nancy is married to a wonderful man named Jim, mom to Brittany, Jacob, and Ella, and step-mom to Kenneth. She and Jim are raising their family in North Louisiana. Nancy loves Jesus and has found perfect peace in His perfect love.