House Parenting 101

I CANNOT believe it has been a year since I left my state job in Florida to become a house parent along with my husband!!! We discovered a job market where agencies hire married couples to work with at risk youth. The agencies offers different benefits depending on the size of the agency. Our agency offers us an opportunity to save and to live comfortably. I won’t disclose the location of the agency due to confidentiality. We work with four young men. We manage large portions of their schedules and transport them to a majority of their appointments/meetings. We meet with our supervisor(s) once a week to go over the household and to have a sounding board with any issues that we may experience. I enjoy working with my husband. The job teaches me about myself and exposes areas where I need work. Communication is a big part of the job. As my husband is my teammate, I have to communicate with him all day long. Sometimes when it’s just the two of us, it can be challenging to talk about things other than the boys and what is going on with them. Despite these minor challenges I believe we are in a good space. I have gone back to school to purse my Masters of Social Work and it’s been a long time coming. We have six days off each month and we use these days off to relax and get our minds right. We travel, catch up on phone calls, and maybe get a massage or two.

I am grateful that this job market came our way. I believe that there is still a lot to learn about ourselves and how we can effectively help the kids we work with. We have the potential to mentor, teach, and model positive behaviors for them. I believe that our being with the agency is a blessing and a divine intervention on our behalf. And I am so grateful!


Is Modesty Really The Issue?

Ayesha Curry sparked a huge debate recently when she tweeted that she would rather keep herself covered and save her body’s display for her husband’s eyes only. I watched women respond so negatively to Ayesha’s personal opinion and choice of lifestyle. This caused me to wonder if modesty is really the issue. I have had this topic on my heart for the past couple of weeks and I did not know how to approach the subject. Things tend to go downhill rather quickly when someone decides to talk about modesty and a woman’s duty to cover her blessings.

I really want to know what is wrong with  a woman wanting to keep herself covered. I don’t argue with women who decide to put their physical attributes on display. That is your personal decision and you have to deal with the consequences. But why did Mrs. Curry’s comments ruffle so many feathers? I believe that society and the independent woman ideal has created a belief system that women are able to create their own standards of living without any consequences. That God’s design and purpose for our lives and bodies are on the back burner because we have been fighting for so long for the right to do and say as we please. It is so sad to see young girls, babies even, dressed with literally nothing on. We, as women, should be teaching our children especially that it’s okay to be modest and that modesty can be beautiful. Modesty does not make you less beautiful. It actually enhances your physical attributes. Your appearance says a lot about your character regardless of your words, actions, or thoughts. I have always been taught that the first impression has an everlasting impact on how others view you.

1 Timothy 2:9 & 10 says “In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; but (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.” If you are professing to be a Christian then you should live as such. It shouldn’t be a debate about your attire once you start walking in the light.

I remember wearing a dress as a teen to church one Sabbath that showed some cleavage. I didn’t think anything of it until a young man sat next to me and was “looking” at my bible. From that day forward I have been very conscious of what I wear to church, to work, to school, and even to Walmart. We shouldn’t be debating about why women should dress with sophistication and class. We should NOT be debating about why mothers should raise their daughters to be fierce and modest.

I observe how the people I know and interact with raise their sons and the kind of men they marry. Those sons wear bowties to school and dress in three piece suits for church before they can walk. But when it comes to the mothers, wives, and daughters there’s a discord because God said to be modest and inspired the word about the Proverbs 31 woman.

I believe women have a responsibility to themselves and their future generations to uphold a standard of righteous living. To carry themselves with respect and dignity. Women like Ayesha Curry shouldn’t be a dying breed……

The Search for Inspiration

I recently had a conversation with a good friend of mine who couldn’t understand the small size of her support system. She also couldn’t seem to wrap her mind around the fact that a lot of the advice she receives for her life issues come from people in our age group such as myself. We are young, fresh out of college, and trying to find our way. We didn’t realize how hard “adulting” would be until we graduated and we were thrown into the real world. We subscribe to the blogs and podcasts of young professionals such as Myleik Teele of and Courtney Sanders of I find myself forwarding their emails to my friends to ensure that I spread the knowledge with my friends because I’m sure I am not the only one trying to figure out life beyond the cradle of college. Read more

Submission vs Independence

It is common in our society for women to go far in the pursuit of their goals and aspirations. They will stop at nothing to achieve them. They’re told to go to college, get a good job, and make lots of money. They’re also taught, subconsciously, that they don’t need men to support them. The problem with this mindset is that a lot of women try to diminish the role of the man in society and in the household. They want to hold all the cards and never seem to care about submitting themselves to the ways of the men in their lives. These women could be married and fight to their dying breath to be independent.  Read more

Proactive Growth? At What Price?

When I started my last year of undergrad I honestly thought that progress and maturity would come natural to me. I assumed that my five year plan would carry me and continue to inspire me. I assumed that if all fails I’d still have that plan secured. I assumed that the vision I have for myself would just fall into place. All of these assumptions have come to a halt within my mind. The light bulb went off. I realized that chaos occurs when your responsibilities/goals change but your priorities don’t. I have financial goals, health goals, marriage goals, and life goals. All of these goals mean nothing if I don’t prioritize my resources to accomplish those goals.  Read more

Going Hard in the Paint

As I winded down from a long day at work yesterday I did some self reflection. I’ve been struggling with the feeling of doing more for my friends than they seem to be doing for me. I’m packing boxes and shipping them. I’m buying occasion cards and searching for the prettiest stamps. I’m calling people daily and texting them “Good morning” & “Have a Good Day”. But it never seems to be enough for me. It’s as if I’m compensating for past actions or a subconscious push to those around me to love me more. My reflection led me to May 5, 2011. Read more

Becoming a Pastor’s Wife

Every pastor’s wife I know exudes grace, warmth and compassion. They seem to understand their husbands’ obligations and calling. Never in a million years did I think that I would be praying for that same grace, warmth and compassion. Never would I have imagined being married to a pastor nor me being a first lady. Read more

The All Consuming Emotion…

Anger is one of the most toxic emotions in my opinion. We are so accoustomed to being ‘in our feelings` about stuff that we geniunely have difficulty expressing ourselves and working through those feelings. For some people their anger management skills and self control need work. Not simply because they need help but because they were raised in an environment where no one knew how to process anger in a healthy way. Their parents, their friends, and those around them most likely bottled up their feelings and then exploded at the most inconvenient times. They might have been raised in families where expressing their feelings was just not done. 

I have quite a few run ins with other people especially people in authority because of the way I process anger. I am prone to say whatever comes to mind without thinking first. When this happens someone close to me gets hurt. It was not my intention to hurt them but in the heat of the moment I let my anger take control of me instead of me taking control of my anger. Through the most recent years I have gotten better with how I manage my anger and I am slowly getting better. 

As you go through life you will continually go through trails and tribulations. The easiest way to deal with those trials and tribulations is to get mad at God, people around you, and harden your heart. You reduce yourself to speaking harshly to others with no remorse for their feelings or self esteem. I, unfortunately, struggle this a lot. God has brought me a long way but there is more room for improvement. When I look to the Bible for guidance, I find quite a few gems to help me a long the way. Paul wrote, in Ephesians 4:31-32, “Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.”

A lot of times we are holding on to unneccessary anger and pain. We then get surprised when we see the negative results of those strongholds. God wants us to release it to Him but we seem perfectly content with holding onto it and dying slowly inside.

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light”-Matt. 11:28-30

Just give it all to Jesus and He will give you rest. 

“And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”-John 8:32

There’s no reason to struggle with your anger alone. Reach out to someone. Talk it out and let them help you. You have struggled long enough. Don’t let anger and a harsh tongue poison your relationship with God and with humanity. It is not worth losing your soul over. Pray to God and leave it in HIS capable hands. Be blessed. 

Oh Me of Little Faith

The past couple of months have been a test of my faith in God. I literally had to look beyond my own accomplishments to gain my new job. My resume was great and so was my appearance but I was under the impression that I’d get a job with my awesome qualities. It wasn’t until I started praying for God to work it out that it did. And because God worked it out I had to tell someone. I had to testify.  Read more

Fearing the Unknown

Fear and other related emotions have had and still have a large impact on my decision making process. Decisions such as education, travel, money, etc dictated by my parents my entire life. Now that I am living on my own with my husband budgeting skills are becoming more and more important. My mother constantly pushed me growing up and made sure that all my needs were taken care of. She fostered a HUGE passion for education and reading. She is my go to person for advice and I usually replicate her decision making process. My parents are very valuable to me and have been instrumental in my development.

Did I mention that fear and other related emotions are serious strongholds? I cannot imagine a time during my childhood that I was afraid of anything or anyone. The first time I experienced fear of change was when I was in the eighth grade and I had to choose the high school I wanted to attend. As usual I sat down with the huge book of all the High Schools in NYC and went through all the schools that were suitable to my mother and i . When I got the confirmation letter in the mail, I cried. I didn’t know how I ended up choosing a high school in Manhattan. I had never takent the train to the city. What if I got lost? What if I never make friends? I cried my eyes out. BUT! Those were the best four years of my life thus far. I love my high school and made some forever friends there.

Another instance of me conquering fear was when I was nominated to take a trip with People to People Student Ambassadors to Australia. I took one look at the ziplining video and said nope I am not going. I really didn’t have a choice because my mama went right ahead and paid the money and set up my interview. I was one of thirty five high school students chosen. I remember standing in the post office filling out the application to renew my passport. I remember packing my bag for the twenty day trip. I was so afraid and so nervous. Despite experiencing some homesickness I had an AMAZING time. I can say that I’ve been to the Great Barrier Reef, climbed rocks in the outback, toured the Sydney Opera House and even ‘skywalked’ on the Sydney Tower. If my mother had allowed me to use my fear of the unknown as an excuse I wouldn’t have created some of my most valuable memories.

Those are just two examples of how the conquering of fear has allowed me to experience some amazing opportunities. I have been learning over the years that it is okay to be afraid of the unknown. What you do with that fear is what really matters.

I have some fears of budgeting, graduate school, and life in general. What if I make the wrong choices? What if I make a financial goal and somehow end up sabotaging myself? Is it wrong to have a bachelors degree in social work but not really want a masters in social work? I have to keep reminding myself that it is okay to mess up. Never stop trying and learn from my mistakes. Will I mess up? YES! Is it the end of the world? NO! Each step in the right direction still counts as being on the right path.

Embrace the fear and use it to push yourself forward. Make it work for you and not against you. You are stronger than the fear you imagine.

xoxo P E A C E & L O V E