Category: Link Ups

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Share Four Somethings June 2020

Share Four Somethings June 2020

share four somethings

It’s time for another month of link-ups with Heather Gerwing’s Share Four Somethings. Part of me can’t believe we’re entering Phase 4 here in Illinois (wahoo!) and yet we’ve spent a lot of time still locked down this June.

Something Loved

I loved getting to connect with friends this month! Girl time has become such a luxury in this season of chaos and even with social distancing rules I’ve been able to share coffee, lunch, and intentional conversation with some of my favorite people in person this month.

Something Read

I think like many I’m consuming a lot of articles these days. I’ve been especially grateful for the black voices that have been elevated in response to George Floyd’s death. I think the most important point to make is that all the resources were already published. The conversations that the minority community has been having for decades is one that many have just started to pay attention to, and while that’s great, it’s most important to remember that the books weren’t published in response to George Floyd. They were published because the Church has always had division they have needed to address. Skye Jethani’s USA Today article isn’t getting nearly the attention it deserves. Likely because the title feels divisive. Look past the title, this is about the need to unite the church. Skye asks an important question. “Is the Bible still the foundation of the faith, or has it become a tool of political tribalism?”

I wrote Unity: The Heart of a Coach’s Wife which I hope resonates with many as well.

Something Treasured

We celebrated our 19th anniversary this month! Of course, things were simple because well, that’s life these days. However, that’s fine with me because a simple celebration this year will hopefully allow for a bigger celebration on our 20th! It’s hard to believe that these kids have moved multiple times, had babies who are now teenagers, and are still figuring out what next week will look like.

Something Ahead

I’m getting closer to launching my book! I released my cover this month and I’m SO excited to share it with everyone! You can learn more about the book subject, hear my recent podcast interviews and download my media kit here!

Lessons from the Sidelines front cover final

Head to Heather’s blog to link up with your Share Four Somethings and see what others are sharing for June 2020!

Share Four Somethings May 2020

Share Four Somethings May 2020

share four somethings

I can’t believe it’s almost the end of May and we’re still dealing with quarantine rules in Illinois. While hopeful news trickles out randomly, it’s challenging to keep the days straight. Regardless there are some great things to reflect on this month for May 2020 Share Four Somethings.

Something Loved

In May I loved getting out and enjoying the fresh air. I was able to use my new camera lens for the first time and took some nature photos. Even though the lens is for football games I need to start practicing some time! Fingers crossed I’ll be out of the field in a few months snapping pictures of my favorite team in orange and black.

Something Read

For work we’re reading Seth Godin’s book This is Marketing. I adore Seth’s perspective on marketing. It’s about serving your ideal buyer to the best of your ability rather than hustling or selling. Here’s an excerpt:

No matter what your product or service, this book will help you reframe how it’s presented to the world, in order to meaningfully connect with people who want it. Seth employs his signature blend of insight, observation, and memorable examples to teach you:

* How to build trust and permission with your target market.
* The art of positioning–deciding not only who it’s for, but who it’s not for.
* Why the best way to achieve your goals is to help others become who they want to be.
* Why the old approaches to advertising and branding no longer work.  
* The surprising role of tension in any decision to buy (or not).
* How marketing is at its core about the stories we tell ourselves about our social status.

You can do work that matters for people who care. This book shows you the way.

If you have a business or side hustle of any size this is a must read.

Something Treasured

We celebrated our son’s 15th birthday this month. It’s hard to believe it’s already been 15 years, that is until I stand next to him and he towers over me. While it wasn’t the birthday I’d hoped to celebrate with him, I’m thankful he’s healthy. It’s amazing to reflect on the past fifteen years and think about all the funny moments we’ve had together.

Something Ahead

Early in May I submitted my first manuscript for publication! I’m so excited to finally move forward with this project that I’ve worked on for over two years. If it wasn’t for my monthly Mastermind meetings as well as some amazing support from friends and family this dream would still be floating in abyss.

Over the next few weeks, I’ll reveal my book cover, announce my preorder giveaways (which are awesome), and share a lot more about this book that has been one of the most difficult things I’ve completed. Because of that, I’m so proud of the final product and I can’t wait to put the finishing touches on it!

What are you up to this month? I’m linking up with Heather Gerwing for another month of Share Four Somethings. Join us over on her blog!

Share Four Somethings April 2020

Share Four Somethings April 2020

Share Four Somethings April 2020

It feels like it’s been a really long month here in Central IL. We’ve gone from temperatures in the 70’s to the 30’s and back up to the 60’s with some days in between. We’ve watched a beautiful tree in our front yard bloom, the first cardinals appear in our backyard and a LOT of TV. I’m linking up for April 2020’s Share Four Somethings with Heather Gerwing! You can read what I shared last month here.

Something Loved

This month I started leading a weekly Zoom Bible Study for Coaches’ Wives Ministry and I have absolutely loved our Tuesday night meetings! Long before the chaos of this past several weeks, founder Candace Lane planned for members to go through Sharon Hodde Miller’s Nice Study in the month of May using our Right Now Media at Work video access and questions from the CWM magazine. It’s been SO great connecting with new coaches’ wives around the country, and it’s certainly been timely to focus on the Fruit of the Spirit!

Nice by Sharon Hodde Miller

Something Read

Paul Smith is a storytelling coach. His book Lead with a Story was once I read for my work goals. We choose personal and professional goals each quarter and this book fell into both categories. From the book: “This how-to guidebook shows readers how powerful stories can help define culture and values, engender creativity and innovation, foster collaboration, build relationships, provide coaching and feedback, and lead change. Whether in a speech or a memo, communicated to one person or a thousand, storytelling is an essential skill for today’s leaders.” 

If you’re a writer or blogger this is a really helpful book for multiple reasons. Smith offers various examples of ways to implement stories with presentations. He presents several creative styles that fit the personalities of the CEO’s and different teams he has led. The last part of the book walks through story structure in detail.

Something Treasured

While I don’t love the circumstances, I have loved many parts of these slower days. I miss some key parts of our weeks, but it’s been really nice to get out for longer walks on the weekends without competing agendas. We’ve experimented in the kitchen more and our boys have learned to use the grill and smoker. It’s nice to have this gap in time where we can prioritize focusing on some things we may have missed during the crazy years when the boys were younger.

Something Ahead

As much as I’m happy having slower days, I’m really missing time with my girlfriends and date nights. I miss corporate worship with our church and trying on clothes before buying them. I miss walking past someone and not holding my breath nervously. I’m looking forward to the days when we can embrace a new normal where our country and global experts have a deeper understanding of this horrible virus and masks (hopefully) aren’t necessary.

I’m linking up with Heather Gerwing for another month of Share Four Somethings! Head to her blog to see what others are sharing this month.

10 Things I Learned This Winter

10 Things I Learned This Winter

10 Things I Learned this Winter 2020

I can hardly believe we are about to turn the calendar to March! The third month of the year is one of my favorites because Ordell and I both celebrate birthdays in March and it’s also the month that we’re supposed to say goodbye to cold weather, but I’m not sold on that one yet for this year. Before I start looking too far ahead, it’s time to do a little reflecting for Emily P. Freeman’s quarterly link-up What I Learned.

10 Things I Learned in Winter 2020 Include:

I learned that it’s great to get away every once in a while even if it’s only for 24 hours. When Ordell was coaching college ball we were intentional to schedule time away in between the season and recruiting or just after the heavy travel season. We both needed uninterrupted time to focus on each other. Since we’ve transitioned to the high school and our boys are older I’ve felt so spoiled by how many dates nights and weekend breakfast dates we get these days it never crossed my mind to keep our post season routine going. Ordell went above and beyond this year pulling off a huge surprise and I have to admit, not only was it a ton of fun, but I REALLY needed that time away.

I learned about Dad’s Day traditions at the University of Illinois Football and I was an emotional mess. Watching those proud dad’s on the football field cheer alongside their daughters and run their sons onto the field before the game so beautiful. It was easy to see the joy in their faces and also the respect they had for how hard their kids were working every week to earn their degrees.

I learned I can survive my baby turning into an official teenager. I don’t know why but some birthdays are harder than others and I was dreading this one. We celebrated with a family dinner at a local restaurant and ordering a gift off his wish list he’d saved for a very long time.

I learned my word for this year is Pursue. Sometimes I know this year months ahead of time, but year God didn’t clarify my one word until very close to the end of 2019. It’s been a great word for me so far, I’m interested to see how the rest of the year goes, but as far as one words go, it’s the most interesting one for me in the ways God is moving and the things he’s teaching me.

I learned burnout is always something I’ll need to stay attentive to even though I understand the 5 stages and key ways of how to avoid burnout.

I learned so much about the value of trying softer from my friend Aundi Kolber’s new book! It was SO fun to be a part of her launch team! I used to participate in book launches frequently but since I’ve been focusing on my own writing project the past two years I’ve had to pull back. I consider Aundi a friend and there was no way I was sitting on the sidelines for her first book Try Softer. Little did I know how much the timing of this release would be exactly what I needed in those weeks as well.

I learned that hands down my absolute favorite blog posts each month are the ones where I get to celebrate Wives Who Thrive. This summer I featured several coaches’ wives who were thriving in the coaching life and it was awesome to see the creative ways they are all using their gifts and strengths to glorify God and contribute to their families’ budgets. I’ve decided to continue those posts but I’m opening the monthly spotlight to any wife who is thriving and it’s been SO fun to read all the submissions. I love celebrating other women flourishing in their sweet spots!

This winter I learned a TON about what it takes to put together a successful retreat. I am so amazed at how God blessed our first Pursue Coaches’ Wives retreat and I continue to sit in awe of how he is moving in all the lives of the women who attended the weekend. I cannot stress enough how special it is to partner with Fellowship of Christian Athletes in this new venture. Read all about my reflections from the weekend here.

I learned once again how easy it is to take time to be kind. With more military families deploying I’m reminded again that as coaches’ wives we have an opportunity to serve our local communities and support the military families around them.

I learned how much I continue to treasure inheriting furniture from family. I’m becoming more sentimental about our home decor with each piece I collect. Now that our boys are older and understand how to take care of things it’s so nice to have history and memories in every room.

I’m linking up with Emily P. Freeman for another quarterly round up of What I Learned.

Share Four Somethings Feb 2020

Share Four Somethings Feb 2020

share four somethings

I’m linking up with Heather Gerwing for another month of Share Four Somethings and sharing some of our February family fun!

Something Loved

Our church has the genius idea to schedule the middle school and high school retreat over Valentine’s Weekend every year and I have to tell you it’s the best thing ever. A Staycation Friday-Sunday is a perfect way to celebrate the weekend if you ask me! Our kids spent the weekend having a blast at the annual Reverb Youth Conference

Something Read

I’m reading Suzanne Stabile’s The Path Between Us. I’ve recently discovered a lot more about my Enneagram number thanks to the help from some gentle guidance from a coach and the insights from this book. What I love about the Enneagram is that it isn’t static. Consider this quote from Stabile, ” We all struggle when we are on the low side of average behavior for our number. So, to honor our relationships, we all need to watch for behavior that exaggerates the things that seem important from our point of view but end up causing separation between us and the people we care about. “

Something Treasured

This month I inherited my Uncle’s furniture now that he’s safely in an assisted living facility. Our home is a mix of old and new, and I have several pieces of furniture of three of the five Moorad brothers in our home now. I love the mix of old and new. In particular, this dining room table is a wish come true. I’ve wanted a rectangular table that can seat a crowd for awhile. With its additional leaves, we’ll finally be able to host large groups at the same table.

new furniture

Something Ahead

Next month Ordell and I celebrate our birthdays and we’re headed for a family getaway for spring break for the first time ever! I’m loving all these family first thanks to the high school coaching life!

Share Four Somethings January 2020

Share Four Somethings January 2020

Share Four Somethings 2029

We’re changing up Share Four Somethings and I love the new shares! If you read our monthly link-ups in 2019 you will notice that two of these headings have changed. I’m excited to head over to Heather’s blog and read what others are sharing for January 2020. If you haven’t participated in Share Four Somethings yet now is the time to join us! This monthly link-up is a great way to connect with other bloggers. I’ve gathered some of my best recommendations from these posts for books, podcasts, and even places to visit!

Something Loved

In January I loved the slow start to the month. I always love that when you put Christmas decorations away the house immediately feels decluttered and cleaner. Since we just moved this summer there isn’t much we need to purge and organize right now so instead, we spent days resting which felt like the right way to kick off a semester that is sure to have us running from activity to activity soon enough.

Something Read

If you missed my review of Try Softer please take a minute to check it out! Aundi wrote an amazing book that I truly believe has the potential to help us all have healthier relationships and most importantly love ourselves the way God loves us.

Something Treasured

This month I put together our yearly digital photo album. This is something I started doing when our boys were born and I received a coupon for a free digital album. I loved the way it turned out and found that somehow, without trying I take just enough photos to fill a standard 8×8 or 9×9 20 page digital album each year. I pick a different theme and some books are different sizes because I always wait until I get a free coupon. Spending time pulling the images together from the year, remembering the highlights from our times as a family is always fun. Our stack of albums sits in order and it’s amazing to see how quickly our boys’ interests change year to year as well as which interests are sticking around. We’ve had some fun family vacations and all their camping trips are documented as well.

Something Ahead

This month I’m partnering with my local FCA chapter as well as several other coaches’ wives in the Midwest to put together the first Pursue Coaches’ Wives retreat. I’m speaking and leading a breakout session. If you’ve read this blog you know it’s part of my heart’s desire to encourage coaches’ wives to pursue God’s calling for their lives and flourish in the shadow of the limelight. That often begins with self-care and time spent understanding how God uniquely designed us. Will you join me in praying for the wives attending this event as well as everyone speaking and working SO hard to put together a retreat to serves these women?

Head over to Heather’s blog and read what others are sharing for January 2020, and to link-up your post!

Share Four Somethings LInk Up Calendar
Share Four Somethings December 2019

Share Four Somethings December 2019

share four somethings - link up with Heather Gerwing

Something Loved

First Urbana Fire

I loved getting to spend our first Christmas Eve and Christmas Day morning in our home as a family of four EVER! We’ve always traveled for Christmas, but this year we celebrated early with my side of the family and now that we live close enough to do a day trip with extended family we opted to spend the rest of the holiday at home. We started with Star Wars, made smores in our fireplace, and opened presents on Christmas morning under our tree.

Something Said

I’m so thankful for all the amazing women working together to put the Pursue Coaches’ Wives retreat together! We got together to make these promo videos. Here’s Liz explaining why she chose the name Pursue. I’m so awkward, but the video is great!

Bonus Something Said:

I have to include this podcast from Holy Post Podcast I have had an incredibly hard time being labeled as an Evangelical since 2016 and for the first time, I have the words to explain to people that I am an Evangelical and the people who they are thinking of, the ones they define as worshippers of the President and power rather than the God they say they follow, are actually Fundamentalists who have inaccurately titled themselves Evangelicals for the sake of mainstream media’s attention. By the way, if you thought the creator of VeggieTales was done educating you now that you are an adult, well…you are wrong! 🙂

Something Learned

This study on the illusory truth effect was very interesting. Here is a quote from the abstract:

Repetition increases the likelihood that a statement will be judged as true. This illusory truth effect is well established; however, it has been argued that repetition will not affect belief in unambiguous statements. When individuals are faced with obviously true or false statements, repetition should have no impact. We report a simulation study and a preregistered experiment that investigate this idea. Contrary to many intuitions, our results suggest that belief in all statements is increased by repetition. The observed illusory truth effect is largest for ambiguous items, but this can be explained by the psychometric properties of the task, rather than an underlying psychological mechanism that blocks the impact of repetition for implausible items. Our results indicate that the illusory truth effect is highly robust and occurs across all levels of plausibility. Therefore, even highly implausible statements will become more plausible with enough repetition.

How do people decide if a statement is true or false? Over three decades of research indicate that repeated statements are more likely to be judged true than novel statements

Something Read

I’m reading Aundi Kolber’s book Try Softer and I cannot stop highlighting parts! It is SO insightful regarding our interactions with God, in relationships with others, and how we internalize responses striving to please others. The best part is that Aundi doesn’t speak in theories, she offers chapters of tools from her training as a therapist and through everything points the reader back to God.

“Aundi Kolber believes that we don’t have to white-knuckle our way through life. In her debut book, Try Softer, she’ll show us how God specifically designed our bodies and minds to work together to process our stories and work through obstacles. Through the latest psychology, practical clinical exercises, and her own personal story, Aundi equips and empowers us to connect us to our truest self and truly live.”

I’m linking up with Heather Gerwing for another month of #sharefoursomethings. Head over to Heather’s blog to see what others are saying.

Share Four Somethings – November 2019

Share Four Somethings – November 2019

share four somethings - link up with Heather Gerwing

Something Loved

This month I loved that Ordell took the time to surprise me with an overnight getaway. He planned the whole thing and it was a true surprise. The time away was great, but what I loved the most were all the intentional details he built into our time away just for me like finding a gluten-free bakery. It’s been forever since I’ve walked into a restaurant and I haven’t had to read every label.

Something Said

Our church just wrapped up a series on serving our city. It’s been an excellent series and yet again an awesome reminder that we are in an amazing community. Both teachers and entrepreneurs were a focus during the series.

Something Learned

This month I learned it’s a good idea to back up your website when a server transfer is taking place. I lost 12 blog posts and my redesign update when my hosting provider upgraded to a new server. I’m pretty bummed because I’ll be spending the weekend rewriting December’s posts rather than editing which is where I really need to spend my time. 🙁

Something Read

Burnout is a real thing whether it’s pastors, parachurch leaders or coaches. This article is worth reading if you are feeling like you might need to purge a few things to avoid burnout in ministry.

I’m linking up with Heather Gerwing for another week of Share Four Somethings!

The Value of Our Words

The Value of Our Words

One of the most amazing things about the Bible is that the authors didn’t fully comprehend what they were writing. As a shepherd boy, David wrote poems of praise to pass the time in the fields and journaled prayers on anguish and praise to God later in life. Paul wrote letters from a prison cell to the churches he counseled.

Similarly, in more recent history, we understand the complicated emotions of a Jewish child in hiding during World War II because of Anne Frank’s diary. We know how hard the journey through Ellis Island was for many immigrants because of historical records as well as how many people retained letters.

One of the features of Ancestry.com is the ability to read newspaper articles, letters, and oral histories about relatives. These vibrant pieces help to paint a picture of what was happening within a family during a significant point in history.

Perhaps we forget from time to time that today, we have more than newspaper articles and news reports documenting our daily history. Social media is a digital journal. Just like Anne Frank, every social channel we use can record our daily thoughts, images, and comments of the moment, likely without us considering who will see them beyond the next few hours, let alone beyond the next few centuries.

Occasionally we may regret overheated words (well, at least I do) and we’re thankful there is a delete button. That is, unless someone chooses to take a screenshot of our comments and archive them, right? While this scenario isn’t exactly true, a version of it is.

One of the first things my boss taught me when I started working in digital media is that nothing is ever wholly erased online. I know you want to believe that deleting your Facebook account is as simple as going through the steps Facebook provides, however, even if you delete your profile, your comments aren’t removed, nor are your images. Further, we’re relying on a company that’s proved repeatedly to not quite tell the truth about our data.

Essentially, when we use social media, we’re creating digital journals for future generations to view as part of our historical records. If you’re panicking right now, thinking of your great-grandchildren scrolling through your Facebook feed. Scary? I’m sorry. Stick with me for a minute, though, since we’ve already established the record isn’t going away.

Read the rest about creating an online legacy over at The Glorious Table

Share Four Somethings – September 2019

Share Four Somethings – September 2019

I can hardly believe September is almost over. We have hardly begun to experience fall weather here in Central, IL which I’m not upset about. If we can get through the football season without pulling out our winter gear I always consider that a success.

Reflecting on this month while it seems like it’s flown by, we’ve packed a ton into the weeks as we often do in September trying to find new routines with the start of the school year.

Something Loved

One thing I loved this month was reinstating Slow Saturdays. This isn’t anything official on our calendar but it is an intentional choice on my part. I don’t make plans to run errands and I don’t commit to do anything ahead of time. I work hard to make sure work deadlines are met during the week so that I can relax or focus on something of my choice rather than other people’s expectations and needs.

It’s also a day I rarely cook dinner. We either grill or eat leftovers so the day is one where I hand off all my normal responsibilities. Slow Saturday benefits often include long walks, time at the Farmer’s Market, and a breakfast or coffee date. This month I was able to have a spontaneous breakfast with a coach’s wife friend who was in town for a game. This sweet friend was someone I spent a week each summer with for many years and was thrilled to chat with for a few hours and catch up.

Something Said

My friend Anne Rulo wrote a reflection post about the last year of her writing and speaking journey. In her post A Year of Saying Yes Anne said ” many of the yeses we are called to don’t require huge life change. They require heart change.” She then goes on to outline some key lessons she has learned that we need to help us say yes.

This was one of them: 

To say yes we need a healthy relationship with vulnerability. We rarely feel completely “ready” to step into something new. In fact, I suspect God intends it this way. If He calls us to something He will equip us along the way. However, there is not a single shred of Biblical evidence that He ever equipped anyone fully at the beginning. (You know, except Jesus.) He very often sends His people out feeling vulnerable so He can be their strength.”

Something Learned

I can still try a new recipe and now that my kids are older they will at least try it rather than cry and refuse to eat.

I did a simple twist on stuffed peppers using Bush’s Beans Black Bean Fiesta and 1/2 a pound of chorizo. I didn’t drain the can of beans but after browning the chorizo added it to the meat and warmed it while slicing the peppers.

I’d intended to add rice, but the mixture was hearty enough on its own and I only had 3 peppers on hand so instead, we had 6 half peppers of meat and southwest beans topped with shredded cheese and then I served the rice on the side and topped the peppers with guacamole just before eating them.

We will have that meal again for sure. And the best part is, I know it is one that can be prepped ahead of time as well.

Something Read

Have you heard of the book Just Mercy? I hadn’t until my boss sent me this YouTube link and asked if Ordell and were aware the movie is coming out in December. He just finished the book recently. This is on my “Something to Read” list 😉

Here’s the official trailer for the moving starring Jamie Foxx and Michael B. Jordan: