Trust or Fear?

"I am taking care of you.  Trust me at all times.  Trust me in all circumstances."
"a time for everything and everything in its time"
"Stop trying to work things out before their times have come."
Just a few quotes from my devotional this morning.  Okay Lord, I'm listening!! =)
We received some news last week that was long prayed for and long awaited.  And its big....like...life altering big.  But it has brought on more waiting.  Waiting for more answers that will confirm which direction our future is going in.  There some huge changes coming for our family in the next couple of months, and this news confirmed that.  But what those changes are?!  We don't know yet.  AHHHH!!! 
We don't know where we will be living or what job, if any, my hubby will have but what we do know??  That God is at work here and has been every step of the way over the last few years.  The enemy's attacks are so strong right now.  Crazy strong and constant.  But as John and I laid in bed last night talking, i was reminded of two very special times in this journey that were so relevant at the time but also brought me so much clarity and comfort yesterday as i struggled to hand it all over to the Lord.  Struggled to trust and rest in knowing that God didn't change because of any news, or change, or earthly frustration.  None of this is a surprise to Him and He's got this!! 
One of those times was one day when i had stopped in our church office to take care of some ministry business and i had really been struggling with our situation.  I was tired and emotionally worn and one of our pastors picked up on it.  So we chatted a few minutes, i cried a lot (cause that's what i do), he prayed over me and then he told me the following....
Aubrey, i want you to remember that when Satan's attacks are strongest, you can be assured that God is at work in a big way in you and/or your family's life.  There is a spiritual realm that we don't see but the devil does....he sees God at work and he does the only thing he can.  He tries to rob us of peace.  He tries to invoke fear and anxiety.  Don't let him win.  God is at work in a mighty way in your family & situation, Aubrey.  Don't let Satan rob you of your peace. 
The other time was talking with another pastor/friend.  And she shared about a time in her past when she struggled alot like i was/am to understand what God was doing.  And she shared about a sermon she vividly remembers during that time when the pastor speaking said....
Sometimes God takes things away from us because He has something so much better and we would never give up what we have now on our own to move into what He has for us.
Both of those things were so relevant at the time they were shared with me.  And they brought so much peace at the time.  But yesterday??  The wrecked me in the best way because God used them to bring clarity to what we're facing right now.  To remind me that His ways are not my ways and to just hold on.  Just keep trusting that He has this. 
I literally don't know what our lives will look like in a few short months other than knowing that it will not be what it looks like right now.  The unknowns are endless.  The questions in my mind relentless.  But minute by minute, hour by hour, I will choose to trust in Jesus and his promises.  I will not let Satan win this battle ~ I will be joyful in knowing that while the weight of this seems too much to bear, its never too much for the Lord.  He's got me.  He's got my family.  And He will never forsake us!
We would appreciate your thoughts and prayers over the coming weeks as we wait.  And then as we move into whatever it is that Gods plans for our future are!
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.
~Proverbs 3:5&6~


Menu Monday

My menu planning efforts have definitely been lacking the last couple of weeks so I'm excited to try some new recipes this week!  Here's what will be on our dinner table for the week...
Monday ~ Meatballs w/ Spaghetti Sauce & Green Beans
Tuesday ~ Enchilada Chicken Stew w/ Cornbread
Wednesday ~ Lemon Poppy Seed Baked Chicken over Rice (or Spinach for me!) w/ Strawberries
Thursday ~ Maple Mustard Chicken w/ Broccoli
Friday ~ Chicken Fajitas
Saturday ~ Breakfast for dinner!
Sunday ~ Grilled Burgers & Hotdogs w/ Corn on the Cob & Baked Beans
I get a lot of questions about Paleo and how I make it work.  I have to say that it seemed so overwhelming to think about at first and I had no idea how I was going to do it.  "What is my family going to eat??"  "I don't have time to make something for me and something different for them!" These were just a couple of the many questions that went through my mind.  But I knew I wanted the results that my eating a paleo-like diet could bring and so i just jumped in and decided to figure it out as I go.
The biggest thing for me has been to find what works best for my family!  For us, I don't make separate meals at dinner, but I do make cornbread for the rest of my family to go with the stew, or get tortillas/taco shells for everyone else to use on taco & fajita nights, etc.  I "accessorize" dinner differently for the family some nights.  Another example is this week when I make the lemon poppy seed chicken, the boys will be eating it with rice while John and I will have our chicken over fresh spinach. And sometimes i stretch the boundaries of "Paleo" a little to make it fit me & my circumstances better.  What do I mean?  Well, every once in a while i use Campbell's cream of chicken or mushroom soups. Or cream cheese. Or other processed convenience ingredients. {gasp!}  Would that fall into the Paleo list of approved foods? Nope!  But the world doesn't end either!  The key words here are "every once in a while".  It's not everyday!  This isn't about being strict and stressed, but about making my norm healthier and better!  I'm planning on doing a post later this week about some tips & tricks that have made all of this a little easier for me, so check back!!
I'm hardly an expert on paleo or healthy eating...quite the opposite actually!  I'm just a normal busy mommy & wife trying to make this healthier way of eating work for me and I love that I get to share some of what works here so that it can hopefully help someone else too!!
Happy Monday!!

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time, we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
~Galatians 6:9~


Instagram Fun #4

Some of favorites from Instagram over the last few weeks....
Me and littlest at church. =)

this had been a particularly tough day with the boys and seeing this as i was walking past the baby's room made my heart smile.  this mommy stuff is tough but SO worth it!

this brave guy has been getting allergy shots for almost 4 years now.  he gets a shot in each arm and he's at the point now that he only gets them once a month but there was a significant period of time when he had to go every week!  and each time his arms swell and itch and burn and he rarely complains!  he's growing up so fast and I'm so proud of the young man he is becoming!!

this lil guy LOVES this huge box in our garage and so do I! ha! he is happy & contained and those are 2 words i can rarely use together when speaking of my sweet, crazy, busy boy! ;)

we have a catch & release pond in our neighborhood and daddy took the big boys fishing one Saturday morning!

this girl is moving soon and so I'm spending any time i can with her ~ even if its going grocery shopping together!

i got to spend some time pool side relaxing while watching the boys swim in Jacksonville.  it was refreshing!

our last day in Jacksonville was rainy and the boys didn't get to swim like they hoped but the rain did finally clear up so i took them down to the pool for a quick soak in the hot tub before bed!  i swear it was yesterday i was swaddling & rocking these 2 ~ passing time is a bittersweet thing!
Come follow my day to day in pictures on Instagram ~ I'm @sassyaubs!!
Hope everyone is having a blessed week!! 
Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
~Hebrews 4:16~


Family Getaway!

A couple of weeks ago, John and I decided we needed a little family get away!  Knowing that our time in Florida is probably coming to an end in the near future, we decided to head to Jacksonville and see some great friends who live there now!!  We had the best time and it was such a blessing to be able to see our friends!!  It was like no time had passed!!
We got in on Thursday afternoon and went down to the pool! After some swimming, we had dinner at the hotel and then i went and met Ashley at Starbucks so we could do some catching up! It was a great way to end the day!!

Road Trip!!!  =)

When i got up to leave for Starbucks and walked past the boys room, this is what i saw....they melt my heart!
On Friday morning, we headed out to the zoo!!
Love these 4 dudes!

Colby totally has the "really mom" face going on! ha!

feeding the giraffes!!

pit stop! =)

checking it out!

they had the coolest dinosaur exhibit!! 

Dylan was completely freaked out by the sound effects but these 2 LOVED it!!

petting sting rays!

on our way out ~ we had a great time!!

me & hubs!
We headed back to the hotel for some napping and pool time!  Friday evening we went over to our friend's house for dinner!!  The "H's" got to Pensacola the same time as we did and we ended up in the same small group at church and the rest is history!!  It was so great to see them!!  We also got to see Jen & baby Reagan who we hadn't met yet ~ Brandon is deployed so we didn't get to see him, but it was so fun to catch up with Jen!  And our friends, the Owens, were there too!!  And of course, it was so fun that I totally forgot to take pictures until the very end when it was past bed time and all the kiddos were cranky! ha! 
Jen w/ Reagan, Ashley, Lisa, & Me!!
Saturday we woke up to rain and a serious drop in the temps (which i did NOT pack for! oops!)  But we still managed to have a great day!  We met the "H's" at Dave & Busters for lunch & games, did some shopping, enjoyed Chipotle for dinner (Pensacola NEEDS a Chipotle!), and finished the evening with some frozen yogurt!
the boys playing their favorite game at D&B's!
This trip was just what we needed!!  It was the perfect mix of fun for the boys and down time for John & I!!  It truly was a blessing and we came home Sunday refreshed and ready to finish out our time here in Pensacola!!
Wealth and honor come from you;  you are the ruler of all things.  In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all.
~1Chronicles 29:12~


Menu Monday

We got back yesterday from a little family get away and let me tell you....it was such a blessed, amazing time of relaxation, fun, friendship and just soaking up every minute with my loves!  But as you all know, getting back into the swing of things after traveling can be daunting!  Here's what will fill our tummies as we get back in the groove....
Monday ~ Creamy Lemon Chicken w/ Snow Peas & Peppers
Tuesday ~ Grouch Chicken w/ Green Beans
Wednesday ~ Tacos
Thursday ~ Chicken & Apple Sausage w/ Broccoli
Friday ~ We're going to a fundraiser spaghetti supper!!
Saturday ~ Pizza for the guys/ Bunco w/ the girls for me!!
Sunday ~ Grilled Hawaiian Kabobs w/ Chicken, Peppers & Pineapple
While I'm not a fan (AT ALL) of the heat that comes along with spring & summer, I do love being able to grill and the lighter food that comes along with it!!  What is your favorite meal for spring time?!!  I'd love to hear from ya!!
Since I didn't get to post last week.....
***Last week was a tragic one for this country and my heart hurts.  Oh how my heart hurts for every.single.person who's life was forever changed last week by the horrible events that took place.  Life is a blessing....every single day of it!  And while its tough to find any good in tragedies like the bombing in Boston & the explosion in Texas, I will say that it has helped me to re-focus.  To take a deep breath before getting frustrated w/ the little things and to remember to really cherish every giggle, every smile, every talk, and yes, every single fit thrown & sibling feud the boys get in.   To hold John's hand a little tighter, to thank him more often, to tell him more often how special he is to me.  To smile more, laugh more, and focus on just how blessed I am.  Because I am blessed.  So very very blessed.***
Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:  Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
~Lamentations 3:21-23~


Menu Monday

This weeks menu easily earns the award for the most uninspired & boring menu I've ever done! Ha!  Coming out of a week that absolutely wore me out and starting a week that we will only be home for half of ~ I was just lazy about our menu.  I'll be back to my finding new Paleo recipes and planning a yummy, more inspired menu ways next week! =)
Here it is....are you ready??!
Monday ~ Breakfast for Dinner
Tuesday ~ Brown Sugar Bourbon Chicken w/ Roasted Squash & Onions
(this one didn't happen last week!)
Wednesday ~ Frozen dinners for the guys & I'll throw together a salad!
Thursday - Sunday ~ Out of town!!!
Are you at least a little impressed with the epic proportions of my laziness?!  No??  Okay....i know...it's really not a great menu.  But it works for all that we have going on this week!
Hope everyone enjoyed a blessed weekend!!
But let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy.  Spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may rejoice in you.
~Psalm 5:11~


Old Mcdonald....

Had a Farm...
Yesterday, Veronica and I took the boys out to a nearby farm!!  It was so fun!  They harvest their own honey, sell their own farm fresh eggs & make lots of other fresh, homemade treats!!  The boys had a blast checking out the chickens & turtles, playing with the dog & cat, & eating some homemade ice cream!
lovin' on Ruby the dog!

what little boy doesn't love rocks?!

my handsome boys checking out the turtles

the family at the farm makes their own icecream and the boys enjoyed some!

the littles checking out the chickens!

Dylan LOVED this kitty cat!! He was talking to him in this pic! ha!
We brought home some eggs & honey and can't wait to go back!!  They have blueberries that will be ripe and ready to pick in about 5 weeks and we are looking forward to picking lots of them!!
Have a great weekend!! 
I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.  Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.
~Psalm 27:13&14~


Current flavor of crazy.....

***i don't know how in the world i did it but i hit the hubby jackpot! He completely supports my crazy in every way! This week? While i am up to my eyeballs in putting together a massive fundraiser garage sale, he has been helping with the cooking, cleaning and staying up late to help me price stuff.  John Miculka ~ you're such a blessing to me! Love you!!***
This was my facebook status last night.  Seriously y'all?!  When i get an idea in my heart, there is no stopping me and sometimes....okay.... A LOT of times these ideas are crazy.  You know, in a good kind of way!  The current flavor of crazy is a massive fundraiser garage sale!  A friends mom is fighting her second form of cancer in a year.  The medical bills are piling up.  So, one friend said something like "lets brainstorm ways we can raise some money to help."  And this garage sale idea was born.  I'm blown away by people's generosity!!  I've been up past midnight for the last several nights working on pricing and getting things ready.  We have tons of stuff that has been donated and a lot more still coming in!  And this man of mine?!  He supports my crazy in every way.  He is such a blessing!!
So this week I'm up to my eyeballs in.....
lists.  lots & lots of lists!
pricing stickers.  i see the world in neon pink, yellow, green & orange for now! ;)
and stuff.  oh my word ~ alot of stuff!  i couldn't get a good angle for the pic to really show how much stuff but its alot.  and its awesome!!  and this is just what's been priced already ~ there is lots more!!! =)
I'm so so so thankful for an amazing husband who not only puts up with, but embraces whatever crazy I get myself into.  And I am so very grateful for the opportunity to bless my friend and his mom in this way!  And I'm thankful that I'm not in this alone....so many friends are helping in any way they can!  I'm off to check more "to-do's" off of my many lists ~ hope you're having a fabulous week!!
Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.
~James 1: 2-3~


Menu Monday

Last week was pretty quiet around here and it was much needed because things are going to be CRAZY for the next couple of weeks!!  I feel like i have completely settled into the Paleo eating and its even becoming kind of fun to search for new recipes and continue figuring out how to make this work for me & my family!
Here's what will fuel the crazy around here this week....
Monday ~ Crockpot BBQ Chicken w/ Green Beans
Wednesday ~ Marinated Chicken Alla Griglia w/ Broccoli
Thursday ~ Grill Burgers & Hotdogs w/ Baked Sweet Potato Fries
Friday ~ I won't be home that evening so I'll throw together a salad before i leave and the boys are ordering pizza!
Saturday ~ Brown Sugar Bourbon Chicken w/ Roasted Squash & Onions
Sunday ~ Skillet Sausage w/ Peas & Carrots
Hope you all enjoyed the weekend and that your week is off to a great start!!
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you.  I do not give to you as the world gives.  Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
~John 14:27~


Fitness Update!!!

Alright y'all.  Here it goes.....sharing the numbers.  Easy?  No!  But, I want to keep it real and if sharing these numbers can inspire even just one person to get active and eat better than its worth it!! 
Like I've shared before, I began a bootcamp program back in October.  And then just a couple of weeks ago I began eating Paleo.  Each bootcamp session is 6 weeks long and then the trainers do assessments and keep track of our body fat, weight, and measurements!  Check out this short video clip to see a little of what bootcamp is all about.....
Now for the scary part....sharing numbers!  When i began bootcamp on October 15th, 2012 my number were:
Weight: 211 lbs (YIKES!)
Body fat: 38.2% (super YIKES!)
Chest : 41 in.
Waist: 43 in.
Hip: 49 in.
Thigh: 27.25in
Bicep: 13.25 in
UGH.  Its still so hard to believe that i let myself get to that point.  But, that's the old me!!  Last night, 5 1/2 months later my numbers were:
Weight: 190 lbs
Body Fat: 30.2%
Chest: 35.75 in
Waist: 36.25 in
Hip: 44.5 in
Thigh: 23 in
Bicep: 12.5 in
getting measured last night!
So....the fun numbers!!  The weight, fat, & inches I've lost!!
Weight: -21 lbs.
Body fat: -8%
Chest: -5.25 in.
Waist: -6.75 in.
Hip: -4.5 in.
Thigh: -4.25 in.
Bicep: -3/4 in.
A total of 21.5 inches lost!!!
Facing these numbers isn't easy.  I've still got a LONG way to go but I'm working at it!  And I'm getting there!  I want this to be a lifestyle....I don't ever want to see these numbers again.  I want to feel good about me again.  I want to be healthy and well so that i can enjoy my family and the life I'm blessed with!  I want to be a positive example to my boys.  There really isn't a down side to it!!  Yes, it's a time commitment.  Yes, it's hard.  But anything worthwhile takes time & hard work, right?!
Every journey begins with a single step. 
I'm grateful that my journey is underway and I'm grateful for Fixed on Fitness and for Troy (my trainer) who is completely dedicated & committed to helping me be the best me I can be!


Sunshine & Simplicity

There are times that I spend lots of time planning activities for the boys and worrying about every little detail.  And mostly?  Things never go as planned!  And then there is days like yesterday, where I just decided to stop what I was doing and take them outside.  But not just go sit outside with them, but be in the moment with them!  Phone left inside, no laptop....just me, them, and whatever they wanted to do!
The weather was amazing ~ sunny, warm, low humidity ~ gorgeous!  Shortly after we got out there I heard a familiar sound.  The sound of freedom...jet noise.  One of the blessings of living in Pensacola is that the US Navy Blue Angels are based here!  Seeing them flying, hearing them, it never get old!  And we were blessed yesterday to get to watch them practice from our driveway!!!  Not many can say that and I don't take the blessing that it is for granted! 
Dylan wanted to read books, Colby & Brayden wanted to play basketball and show me their latest tricks on their scooter and bike, and we were all excited about the bonus of watching the Blues while we played!
i took this standing in my driveway. no crazy zoom....just snapped real quick, so crazy cool!!

there they are again!!

this box of books is there because it's being sold in a fundraiser garage sale next weekend.  he LOVES to read and spends time "reading" from this box every time we are outside!  I think he might be kind of sad when those books disappear...

sweet boys.  so incredibly thankful to be their mom!
So thankful for the gentle reminder yesterday that some of the best memories are made in the simplest of moments!  This time it was soaking in some sunshine, playing, and watching the Blue Angels!  Just taking time to really be in the moment with my boys!
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
~John 3:16~


Our Easter Weekend

Our Easter weekend was wonderful!  We spent Saturday morning/early afternoon doing yard work, dying eggs and doing some cleaning.  Our church had 2 services on Saturday evening with an egg hunt & bouncy houses in between, so we attended church Saturday evening!  Our pastors are amazing and have such a heart for community outreach ~ it was a great service and evening!! 
all smiles getting ready to dye eggs!

ha! dylan was not happy about the egg "disappearing" in the dye! poor buddy!

he eventually cheered up and colored an egg!

the finished product.  we tried out using kool aid to dye the eggs this year and the green & blue are great!!  the other colors? not so much! (like that brown looking egg?  its supposed to be purple! ha!)

oh how these 3 steal my heart over and over....LOVE them!

so blessed.

dylan LOVED the bouncy houses!! 

1st egg hunt!

after the egg hunt!  Dylan was far more concerned w/ getting into that egg than looking at the camera! =)
When we got home that night, we put the baby to bed and then made Resurrection Cookies with the big boys before they headed to bed!
"beating" the pecans

sealing the oven
Sunday morning we woke up and the boys checked out their goodies from the Easter bunny and then hunted the eggs that the bunny hid!
checking out their goodies!

this was the only egg Dylan found! ha! right after i snapped this, he sat down, emptied the candy & ate candy while the big boys battled it out in the easter egg hunt!  =)
After all of the Easter bunny excitement we relaxed, and baked, and cooked and got ready for friends to come over!!  We enjoyed our evening with great friends ~ it was full of laughter and great food and the boys played hard the whole time!! (it was so fun that i forgot to take any pictures...oops!!)
It is so hard for me to wrap my mind around the fact that Jesus died for me on that cross.  And he died for you too!!  And the miracle of His rising and the gift of salvation ~ its overwhelming to know that God loves me so unconditionally!  And he loves you the same.  Just like you are.  Right where you're at...He loves you!! 
So, I'd love to know.....what is your favorite Easter tradition or food....what is your favorite thing about Easter?!
For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
~Romans 8: 38 & 39~