I am New

 

2013 was the year of change.  I found out I was expecting on January 19th. To say it was planned would be a lie, but to say it was a surprise would also be a lie. I was one of those women, terrified of the commitment motherhood brought, the responsibility and the change.  

 

So, I opened myself up to the possibility. Every month I was nervous of the outcome, envying the selfless woman who whole-heartedly wanted her life to no longer be about herself and her husband. 

 

A year or so later, there I was, looking down at a positive test, calm and quiet. I took a deep breath and said to myself, “Ok, God… this must be what you want.”


 

In the months that followed, there was contentment in my heart. I believe it was Owen’ personality coming through, because I am typically not a worry-free person.  Yes, being pregnant had its challenges and emotional ups and downs, but as the months passed and my belly grew- so did my heart. I was happy and was the most present I have ever been. 


On September 20, 2013 at 7:45pm, Owen Lucas left me speechless.  My previous desires and plans faded away in the days and long nights that followed.  It was a hard few weeks after Owen’s birth. I struggled with a touch of postpartum, feeling anxious and sad. I would cry on queue every night for weeks, knowing the night was not going to bring relief to my tired and healing body.

 

I found myself praying, more than I ever had.  I would be in conversation with God while I rocked my new baby back to sleep during the early morning hours. I would seek His refuge when I would lay in the dark watching Owen’s chest rise and fall, terrified something would happen if I was not vigilant. Putting myself in God’s hands because I didn’t feel I could do it on my own. 


 

Slowly, I felt myself coming back, my fear still present, but not as intense.  My confidence grew and I felt capable… I felt new.  Life had taken on new meaning. Shifting, redirecting my plan and purpose. Becoming a mother forces me to be better and do better in the areas of life that matter most. The refinement of self that took place and continues to take place after having Owen has been exhausting!

 

I feel this is the closest to a Godly love I will ever display. Consistently selfless, giving love without expectation or rewards, a love I didn’t have the confidence to believe I was capable of giving.  I am thankful for this season, and as challenging as it is, it has opened my eyes to a love and faith I was once blind to. I now live to watch my husband make our son smile. Those silent moments at the end of the day as I rock Owen to sleep and the rushed kisses I give Evan in the morning as we run out the door to work.  

 

2 Corinthians 5:17 has forever been etched onto my heart, “the old has gone, the new has come.” I surrendered myself to God’s plan the day I found out I was expecting, and I know I will continue to do so as I work to be the mother He has called me to be. I know that all things in life are placed there to make us better. The joys and struggles work together to mold our hearts to the Lord’s liking and with grace we can make it through, becoming new again.

 
 *All of the photos in this post were taken by the amazing Brittany Anderson

If I’m Honest…

Having a plan always works out, right?! Ummm, not so much. One lesson that seems to always keep showing up is learning to be peaceful and to keep pressing forward despite the challenges of each season.

Staying positive, no matter the circumstances, is very hard for me to do.  I was very good at this in the past, but somewhere along the way I lost this skill.  I am very much a product of my surroundings these days. I feel crazy when my house is out of order or a plan I’ve had for weeks doesn’t follow the course I thought it would. It’s just how I operate. My desire for planning and order increased with motherhood, which is hilarious because that;s probably the worst possible time to crave order and plans.

As I shared with you a few weeks ago in “A New Perspective,”  about a week before the new year I knew it was time to hand it over. I could no longer be lukewarm about my relationship with Jesus. It had regressed back to the “I’ve got this, but having You on the side is nice” kind of thing. My faith and relationship with Christ was my saving grace during my struggle with postpartum, but once I got to the other side after a long 18 months, it was back to status quo, rushing through life not standing still long enough to connect with any consistency.

With many false starts in the past two years, I was throwing my hands up. The weeks that followed were amazing. I was in The Word, I felt light. Then life started to feel like it was unraveling. My grandmother (who is my heart) got diagnosed with Lymphoma, big scary career changes came to light and some serious stress + anxiety set in around making hard calls. The first thing to go was my Bible time. I stuck to prayer, but felt beat up. My written goals to put The Lord first, to work out and make time for my husband were collecting dust.

Surrender

So, I’m calling myself out. I’m not perfect, I fall off track with my goals daily and feel awful about my lack of follow-through on living the life I want to live.

But, He calls us higher. I know this, surrendering to the Lord is not surrendering to the circumstance of life. Surrendering might mean leaning into him more vs. giving up. Surrendering might mean fighting for your surrender. It’s kind of funny that prior to my declaration of surrender things were going pretty well. There were no big waves in life. My circumstances made surrendering easy, the happenings of the past few months are not conducive to meeting a goal of surrendering, if I hold on to the expectation of order and planning.

To surrender in times that are full of uncertainty is a greater accomplishment than to surrender in times of ease. The Lord calls us to master the fruits of the spirit and I will press on toward that goal, fail and try again.

Please don’t be discouraged if you have yet to set a goal, live out the meaning of your 2016 word or take action on any of the things you hoped 2016 would hold for you.

My father gave me some perspective just the other day. He said, “Lay a strip of masking tape down and number it from 1 to 365. Keep laying strips for the next 80+ years.  Each day go and stand on the day it is and realize, you have many days ahead of you.” I’m here to tell you the same thing, you have many more days sister, many more years…”

Let us surrender our hearts, our plans and our circumstance to the Lord. Let us have peace in the understanding that all things work for the good of those who love Him!

Blogging Ain’t Easy | Tips for New Bloggers

The first year doing anything new is full of stumbling and frustration. We have learned so much about ourselves, each other, and what it takes to ultimately start a small business. As January is coming to a close, we felt it would be helpful if we shared WHAT WORKED + WHAT DIDN’T in our first months of blogging. In all honesty, we still have a lot of work to do and there will be bumps in the road ahead of us. We’re constantly evolving our vision and our desire for our little space on the web, but we hope this will be encouraging to anyone looking to jump into the blogging world.

 
We will start with the positive!
 
 
Things that worked:
 
A team approach: Working as a team was something that really made this whole thing work. Looking back, both of us agree that starting and maintaining this blog without one another wouldn’t have been possible. We both have strengths and weaknesses that compliment one another. Marrissa is a wonderful editor! Her spelling, grammar and ability to clean up my fast-paced writing always leave me grateful we work together. We both have very busy lives outside of the blog and if one of us is busy or having a crisis, the other picks up the slack. Isn’t this how it should be when you have a partner?! And we kept in mind — we were friends for several years prior to starting the blog. When we didn’t agree, we kept our friendship in mind and that allowed us to compromise and come up with solutions we both could live with. Team work was a big positive for us in 2015!
 

Grace: We had to give ourselves a lot of grace. We didn’t keep up with our content calendar after our initial launch. There would be days where we would be editing + adding finishing touches minutes before our 10am Wednesday morning deadline in the first couple months of the blog being live. Frustration comes out in it’s best forms in these times and we tried really hard to show one another grace in the midst of all the stress. 

 
Keeping it simple: So many people advised we post more than once a week. We are so happy we kept it simple in the first year. We knew our content wouldn’t have been good quality if we would have tried to learn how to run a blog while posting multiple times a week. Prior to getting our hands dirty, we didn’t know how much went into writing each post! It’s truly a job that sometimes can take days just pulling and editing photos + getting content together just for one post. But hey,  #BloggingAintEasy 😉
 Asking Allison Marie to join in as beauty contributor was also a big win for us in 2015! Go check her out, we just love her + everything she contributed to the blog! 
 
We followed our hearts: We wrote content and hosted events that were centered around things that bring us joy…things that we’re passionate about down to our core. We never strayed from the desire to bring women together and to just be an encouragement to women. Sticking to the interests and topics that are authentically us, made even the most frustrating days so rewarding. When we receive an e-mail or message from someone telling us that our post inspired them to do this or that, or when someone tells us that coming to one of our gatherings was much-needed… that makes all of the behind-the-scenes stress worth it. 

Things that didn’t work:
 
Not creating a content calendar: We really got into the groove of creating a content calendar after the first few months of being live. This was so helpful to us, and now we really have it down to a science. We have a blog meeting at least once a week via phone or FaceTime, but we make it a point to meet face-to-face at least once a month to hash out our content calendar. We assign responsibilities and chisel out a plan for the next month or two. Prior to doing this, delegation of responsibilities was a mess. 
 
Not keeping a budget: This was a hobby for us, something that we looked at as fun, creative outlet. This was a very naive thought to have. The gatherings cost a good bit of money to host, and creating blog content and running our blog (hosting, content platform and blogging courses) all cost money. We didn’t do a good job at all of keeping our costs and profits in order. We just wanted it to work and if it didn’t make money or if we didn’t break even, we didn’t care. This is not something anyone can maintain. In 2016, we will be keeping a budget and making finances a priority. Our work has value, and for it to be of the quality we want it to be, this is a must! 
 
Not knowing what must go into being a blogger: We had NO CLUE how much work it took to blog, nor did we know what went into growing a blog. I think I have explained this struggle throughout this post, so I don’t want to bore you with how unaware we were. 😉 If we can give you any advice, it’s to spend a few months taking blogging courses and joining blogger groups prior to going live, not after like we did! Just following blogs and their social media accounts will NOT prepare you for what you’re about to take on. We would have been much better prepared if we would have done this. We were just excited and jumped in with both feet!  But it’s a job and has to be treated as such. We know that now. 
 

Thinking blogging success comes overnight: Slow and steady wins the race. Thinking that you will have thousands of followers and a steady stream of page views out of the gate is a lie you should just never tell yourself. We would have slow months where we would doubt our efforts. We would lose sight of our mission or goals and feel like quitting. Understanding that this is a continual, steady effort will save you a lot of self-doubt. Just keep creating quality content, while being authentically you and others will see your value. Don’t get discouraged when things happen a little slower than you’d like or when you see someone else’s success. The amount of work that goes on behind the perfectly-curated social media squares is unreal! 


That about covers it! Creating The Wild Revival has been such a fun process. We really love engaging with you ladies + sharing our hearts with you. If you have any questions or need advice before you take the leap, please reach out to us. We would love to support you in any way! When women support other women, amazing things can happen. Keep it real and share what you feel called to share. Those feelings have purpose and the world needs to hear what you have to say. 

BIG NEWS! | Announcing Wholehearted

 
We are so excited to kick off the New Year with you! Keeping in line with our goal of connecting more with our readers, we’re so thrilled to share our newsletter, Wholehearted, with you. Our newsletter will be a little bit deeper than the blog, giving you first dibs on spots at our upcoming gatherings + some insider perks! We hope you enjoy this piece of our heart landing in your inbox throughout the year!
Our first year was full of trial and error, hustle and heart. We started building this blog last May and launched in August. It was wonderful to work with Aubrey Kinch on the design of our site. As we worked diligently to build relationships with our readers, we hosted 4 gatherings in 5 months. These were exhausting and so life-giving all at the same time. We loved hearing how much you ladies enjoyed a stress-free evening with girlfriends!
 
For years, we would read blogs and swoon over all the creative opportunities and community-building activities these ladies had influence over. It would be intimidating to see perfectly-curated lives fill the tiny squares of our Instagram feeds and read the words shared on their blog. We just never felt that our words could speak life into a community of women like theirs did… UNTIL… we put the “what if’s” aside and jumped in with both feet! It has felt so good to pursue this passion of ours. And we are here to tell you: you have more influence than you think and your words do matter. If you have a calling in your heart to share, encourage, or give… there is room for you, too!    
 
One thing we really hope to do is give women with this same dream in their hearts a platform to share + get their start. We were so thrilled bring Allison Marie on as our beauty contributor in 2015. We are always looking for people with something to share! So if its DIY, motherhood, style, faith or something else– we would love to hear from you! 
 
We look forward to continuing to bring you ladies conversations centered around subjects you wanna hear about. Below you will find links to our top viewed posts of 2015. We would love for you to share with us what you want more (or less) of in 2016!? Chat with us on IG, Facebook, and on the blog! 
 
The Wild Revival’s top posts of 2015:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
With so much gratitude in our heart!
 
Amanda + Marrissa 


Subscribe to our Wholehearted Newsletter

 

2016 Inspiration Board + Word Of The Year

We love to look at all of the 2016 goals and visions floating around on social media right now! The hope and promise of what a new year can bring is so inspiring.  When we sat down for coffee to plan out content and talk about what we wanted The Wild Revival to be in 2016, we left our meeting feeling both a sense of contentment and hope. 
 
After some brainstorming, we started listing words we thought adequately described our feelings toward the new year…. slow, steady, intentional, heartfelt, solid, genuine, deeply-rooted. 
 
And suddenly, there it was. 
 
Our word for 2016 is: d e e p l y – r o o t e d
 
(adjective: firmly planted or established.)
 
Ephesians 3:17-19 says:  17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
 
We agreed that it best describes the kind of women we want to be this year as we grow our blog. We want to be deeply-rooted and dedicated to connecting + engaging with you ladies and in our personal lives this year. We are all in with life and this blog allows us to pursue our passions on the side. We want to be deeply-rooted in our faith and in the pursuit of what fulfills us to our core. 
 
So in true “Wild Revival Spirit” of keeping it real… we decided our vision board was going to be just that– realistic and focused on what we know we can do. We wanted to use images relevant to our year ahead… ones that helped us find the beauty in what already is.  More on that subject HERE, where Amanda shared her new perspective for 2016. I have a feeling it will resonate with a lot of you. Especially those of who you feel the pressure to always do things bigger and better than the year before. Her post will give you some insight into how to lay that down and live in the now. 

 

 
So, cheers to a year full of intentional gatherings, quiet, heartfelt conversations over coffee, dedicated work and lots of laughter! 
 
We’re not closed off to the big + exciting, but it’s not our fight to fight. If this blog is to grow, and if our personal desires are to be met, God will do the heavy lifting. We just need to be rooted in The Word, our faith and our commitment to show up for you ladies.
 
We would love to hear what your hopes are for 2016! Share them in the comments below and use #deeplyrooted2016 on Instagram.

A New Perspective | Intentional Goal Setting

 This is my favorite week of the year, the in-between time. I don’t place any huge expectation for the week and the house feels fresh after pulling down all the decorations. There just seems to be a feeling of “space.”  This feeling of space leads to hope, I get really excited thinking about all the possibility to come in the new year.  The newness of the seasons to come, leave me feeling full of new perspective. 
 
I must admit though, I put a lot of pressure on myself to make the coming year full of big accomplishments. I have been doing this for years: writing out goals, making vision boards and filling my calendar with check-in dates for my desired accomplishments. These are all wonderful things and have most definitely been good for creating forward momentum in my life. BUT… this past year, more than ever, I have learned the way we have always done things is not the best fit for the current season of life we are in. 2014-2015 was full of wonderful experiences, but it was also full of heart-crushing let downs and half-hearted living. Let downs and unexpected outcomes are inevitable, and bouncing back is a huge part of living a successful life.  
 
After reading “Rising Strong,” I’ve realized its okay to live in the let down for awhile, letting myself learn from it. In the past, I would jump to the next, not really learning from my experience…more like bulldozing into the next thing & ignoring that I needed to take a beat.  
 
 This year I was forced to be vulnerable and hopeful that others would honor my vulnerability. As we all know, this doesn’t always work out. That leads me to the next lesson learned: I don’t need others to validate my successes or failures for them to be real. This was HUGE and a lesson I will be working on for many years to come. 
 
I have always felt the need to explain myself. Why I am not where I “should be” or how I worked really hard to get to where I am. This is a horrible way to live and leaves you feeling empty when you don’t feel understood. 

A paragraph in the Naptime Diaries ABIDE devotional captures my hope and human heart for 2016 so clearly. “Over the past few years I’ve let Him chisel down the hard parts of my works-loving, producing heart. Slowly He’s helped me to strip off my worldview that sees what I can do as most important so I can dive into the ocean of His refreshment. Yet so many days I still find myself trying to earn my place in the Kingdom.”

It would not be an honest statement to say I have let Him do this. I have been kicking and screaming the whole way. 
 

In light of the lessons learned, 2016 is not going to be about reaching for some big goal. No ladder climbing, business-proposing or huge, life-changing endeavors will be making the list this year. I’m accepting the truth I’ve made it. No matter the accomplishment or lack of accomplishment, I’m contributing what the Lord has created me to contribute.  

 

This will be my third year using Lara Casey’s PowerSheets. They have gotten better every year and I’m looking forward to writing my goals with new perspective in her most recent version.  All of my goals will be focused on the things I currently have going on in my life. I won’t be focused on doing them better or making them bigger. I will be living with a mindset of keeping it simple and being grateful for this season.


I will also be using the Abide Devotional by Naptime Diaries throughout the year. I will dig in to what abiding means and allowing the fruits of the spirit – love, joy, patience… to come forth, not from my circumstances but from Him. 
 
I hope you enjoy the possibility found in the New Year. 

Give yourself grace, remember life is not a check list. Its messy, uncertain and full of glory. I would love to hear what your hopes for 2016 are! Share your goals and the tools you’re using to set yourself up for the new year in the comments below!  


Check back next week for a peak into what Marrissa and I will be up to in the new year! 
 
Happy New Year, tribe! We are so thankful for your support and look forward to seeing you right here in 2016!

Holiday Makeup Look | Allison Marie

Christmas and New Year’s are just days away! Whether you’re celebrating by throwing parties with coworkers, family members, or having a night out with friends, you definitely need a go-to holiday makeup look that would work with a scarf and booties or a fancy dress and heels. It is the busiest time of year and I’ve got a holiday makeup look that is perfect to add a little more glam to your look! 
 
These special occasions tend to be in the evening and more formal. So, you want your makeup to be more on the bold side.  When I hear “Holiday glam” I think smoky eyes, red lips, and even glitter…don’t you?!
First, I always start with the basics such as moisturizer and face primer. Then, I use my go-to foundation, the Tarte Amazon Clay liquid foundation, followed by under eye and blemish concealer.
 
Secondly, it’s time for contouring and highlighting. I like to use my Lorac Pro Palette and Pro Contour brush (see my post on Highlighting + Contouring HERE)
 
Blush is next. I really like “Dirty Plum” matte powder blush by MAC. It’s a berry color that pairs perfect with a red, berry, or mauve lip.
 
Then, we have the most important step: the smoky eye. Always begin with eyelid primer to prevent creasing. Also, it will keep your eyeshadows in place.
 
For this next part I will be using the Smashbox DoubleExposure Palette:
 
The colors above are perfect for a smoky eye. It comes with a dual ended brush. You can even wet the brush and dip it in the eyeshadows to make them more pigmented. Start with the light sand color all over from lid to brow. Then, apply the chocolate brown shade to the crease and dark brown to the far corner. Blending in with your brush. Please do not use your fingers…brushes work so much better! ; )
 
Eyeliner is a must! As I said, I wear black winged eyeliner every day. To smoke it out, apply black eyeshadow over top of the wing you just created and more to the far end. Tightline the bottom lashes with black liner. You can use white to tightline to make your eyes look brighter. 
 
Now it’s time to glitter it up! Take silver or gold glitter and apply it to the eyelid and inner corner. Follow with silver or gold eyeshadow over top, then touch up eyeliner as needed.
You are almost finished with the eye; all you have left is mascara. My favorite is TooFaced Better than Sex. Fake eyelashes are optional. I am a huge fan of the Vegas Nay Lashes from Ulta Beauty. I also really like Ardell’s “Wispies” lashes.
 
Definitely fill in those brows, girl! I only use Anastasia Beverly Hills brow products. I use the Brow Wiz first followed by her DIPBROW Pomade. 
 
I save the lip color for last; I went with a berry lip for this look. I know they say if the eye is overdone to downplay the lip, but this is not always the case! For the holidays, you want to glam it up. And don’t forget lip liner since bright colors tend to bleed out. Sometimes I put lip liner all over my lips then the lip color on top. You can also set it with some powder when you are finished and apply another layer of red lip color over top. 
 
Set makeup with a spritz or two of Smashbox Photo Finish Primer Water or Urban Decay AllNighter makeup setting spray. Setting spray will help your makeup last all night.
 
Finish with red, silver, or gold nail polish, a cute outfit, heels or boots, jewelry, and a cute hairstyle. Now, your look is complete and you are ready to party the night away!

Christmas Tree Farm | Making Time for Holiday Traditions

Last month when we were talking about all the festive things we wanted to do this Christmas, we reserved the first Saturday in December for the Christmas Tree Farm! 

Making time to create traditions during the holidays can be challenging. We set out to check everything off out list this season! With a little planning and being able to say no to all the invitation coming our way we are confident this year will be full of the good stuff! What are some of the must do’s this holiday season for your family? We would love to hear about your traditions and favorite holiday exceptions. Leave us a comment below 🙂

Here’s a look into our Saturday afternoon picking out the perfect trees! 

We could not have asked for better weather! And we are so glad our guys joined us so we snapped a few photos while we were there! (of course we did) ; )

Scroll To Top