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kaldridge

Overcoming Worry with Faith

There isn’t room for both worry and faith.

Let me preface this by saying that I have struggled with constant worry all my life. My gut reaction is to worry and stress over every situation. Every time I am faced with something that is challenging or stressful, I immediately start to worry. My mind jumps to the worst-case scenario and stays there for hours. I think of the worst thing that could be said to me, the worst possible situation. For years, it was this constant loop of stress and worry.

The first time I felt relief from my constant worry was when I started dating my husband. He would push me to be better, he would push me to look at the situation objectively not as what could happen. In every situation he would help me to look at the situation in a different light, helping push me to have faith instead of fear and worry. I could never figure out why my husband didn’t stress out. It wasn’t until we had been married for a while that I finally realized it wasn’t that he didn’t feel that pang of stress or worry, it’s that he knows that things will be fine. He has complete faith that we can handle any situation that comes our way.

My pastor preached a sermon a few weeks ago where he talked about how we can’t have both worry and faith and my husband nudged me. The pastor was speaking in that moment that if we have faith in the Lord, we can’t have this constant worry. It doesn’t mean you can’t have no worries in your life, it means not letting worry consume you. Instead of letting worry be your reaction, let faith come in instead. He went on to say that God mentions “Do NOT worry” countless times throughout scripture.

Philippians 4:6-7 says “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

My reaction to this verse has always been the same, that God must not understand that I have horrible anxiety, doesn’t he understand that my first reaction is to worry, that my mind always jumps to the worst-case scenario. That this verse was obviously not written with me in mind because I can’t get over my anxiety and worry. When in fact, I think this verse was stated specifically for people like me and you. People who deal with massive anxiety and panic attacks, people who stress over the big and little things in life.

 

Do not worry. Choose faith over fear. Choose faith over stress. Choose faith over doubt. In every situation we have the power to pray, pray for faith in that moment. Pray that the Lord would guide our hearts in faith instead of fear and worry. Find someone who pushes you to have faith over worry and fear!

 

The Lord is guiding you every step of the way!

 

xoxo

 

Kayla

 

 

 

Koffee with Kayla Thursday: Building Faith from a Ripped Dress

I love my black long sleeved dress. I feel beautiful and comfortable in this dress, it’s just the right length, the sleeves aren’t too long or too short, and it shows off all the right places. It’s one of my favorite go to dresses. Today it ripped…

I may be over dramatic here but it was heartbreaking. Mainly because I can’t afford to replace it. We are just at that point in our lives, where I can’t afford to replace everything that breaks or tears. I was getting more angry by the second when this bible verse slipped into my mind.

Matthew 6:25-34“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? 

“And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

I was reminded in this moment the gravity of this verse. When things are easy and the money is flowing in, we lose the significance. The Lord knows what we need, he knows there are basic needs that need to be met. And he says if he takes care of the birds of the air and the flowers in the field, won’t he take care of us. If this doesn’t cause you to stop and just praise the Lord, let me phrase it this way.

We are so quick to think that the Lord is against us, that things just aren’t going right. Whether it’s something big, like a family member having cancer, or something small like a ripped dress, we are so quick to change our tune. We are so quick to believe God has forgotten about us, that we are on our own and things will never get better.

And it’s so easy to get trapped in this train of thought. The second my dress ripped, there was no stopping my mind from getting frustrated and upset. I couldn’t think of anything besides my ripped dress. I was angry and upset, texting my husband in anger and thinking about how I can’t replace this dress and my favorite pair of shoes that ripped two days ago. Until I could feel God saying to me, “Kayla, I will take care of you. I am here with you. I will lead you through this time. Trust me.” (once in a while I actually hear that still small voice)

My time during this medical school journey has been one where I have been actively reflected with God about my faith and trusting Him.

When my shirt rips, my family goes through a rough patch, or my husband and I have an unexpected financial expense, I can choose two options.

I can choose to respond as I did with the ripped dress, in anger. I can be angry that things aren’t going my way. I can be angry that things are hard. I can be angry with the world that life isn’t the perfect journey I wanted.

Or I can remember this verse. I can tell myself, if God is taking care of all the animals of the world, and he values me so much more, do I not trust him to take care of my needs too? Do I not trust him with my finances, with my future, with my marriage, with my dreams?

Every day we are faced with decisions. And each day we get the opportunity to respond in Faith instead of Fear.

Today, I pray you respond in Faith. Respond with grace and understanding. Know that while the journey may not be unfolding the way you planned, that God has PERFECT timing. That perfect timing will come to pass. Whatever you may be dealing with today, try a technique my mom always used. When life is hard or she didn’t know what to do, she was on her knees in prayer. She was on her knees asking for guidance, asking for wisdom in the situation. And I have no doubt He answered every prayer, maybe not in the way my mom wanted, but He answered EVERY prayer. He is answering your prayers today, and he is guiding you along this path. Keep the Faith!

 

xoxo,

Kayla

 

The Best Airbnb in Sedona

I am absolutely in love with Sedona! It is without fail, one of the most gorgeous destinations in the US.  My husband and I fell in love with Sedona the moment we saw it, it has an unparalleled beauty that is unlike anything I’ve ever seen!

We’ve had many family members and friends come out to Arizona over the last three years, and once they have seen Sedona it’s the only place they want to go back to! Because of it’s unbelievable views, there really is nowhere bad to stay in Sedona, however, I’ve compiled a list of my go to Airbnb’s in Sedona. (Best part is they all host amazing reviews!)

La Colibri Rouge Luxury Master Suite

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This suite is absolutely gorgeous! Beautiful wood surrounds the walls, floors and door, and you are treated with a large bed to relax in along with a private bathroom for your use. The location is outside of the traffic of downtown Sedona allowing you to relax in nature and truly enjoy your vacation. The room starts at only $99/night and is perfect for any couple looking for a relaxing oasis.

Red Rock Base Camp

At the Red Rock base camp, you get a gorgeous view of the Red Rocks and a quiet comfortable space. The inside of the house is clean, well lit and spacious. Hosting an updated and beautiful kitchen, private patio and comfortable furniture. This house is gorgeous retreat for anyone who wants to have the beauty of Sedona right from their living room for a great price! Starting at $95 a night, this house is definitely a steal for anyone coming to Sedona!

Tranquil Beauty

Kitchen and dining area

While the living room and kitchen are shared with your Airbnb host, the house is absolutely stunning. Pristine and clean, this place is nothing short of a home away from home! This home is right beside Coconino National Forest, which hosts gorgeous views of the Red Rocks! You are also an easy drive into downtown Sedona where all the shops and excursions are. The best part is this gorgeous Airbnb starts at only $43/night!!

Wherever you stay, you will not be disappointed in the gorgeous views Sedona has to offer you!

 

xoxo,

 

Kayla

Lessons from Chip and Joanna Gaines

By this point that everyone has read The Magnolia Story. This story has really stuck with me, its the humbleness and their unwavering faith in the Lord that amazes me. Life wasn’t a perfect picture for Chip and Joanna, there were bumps and challenges along the way. There wasn’t a clear direction for them, there wasn’t an ‘aha’ moment where they realized what God’s plan was for them. Instead, they took each moment and made the most of it. They didn’t question why things fell into their laps, instead they capitalized on them and made the most of them.

What an unbelievable testimony of faith! When I watch Chip and Joanna and read about their lives, there is never a question in my mind that they had unwavering faith. They knew that no matter what happened God was going to be behind them. So they found joy within the hard and difficult circumstances.

Which is where we get what I believe is the biggest lesson from their story. Finding happiness and joy in the difficult times. We have this belief that once we achieve our desired goals or life aspirations that then we will be happy. However, as Chip and Joanna explain through their story, that isn’t the key to happiness. “It was such a blessing to find myself thriving in the middle of the pain. Unless you find a way to do that, there’s always going to be this fake illusion that once you get there–wherever “there” is for you–you’ll be happy. But that’s just not life. If you can’t find happiness in the ugliness, you’re not going to find it in beauty, either.
― Joanna Gaines

When I moved from Indiana to Arizona I had this belief that I wouldn’t be truly happy again until I was closer to family, and it has taken me over two years to realize that this was not the case. I was looking at my life through the lens of what could have been instead of embracing what it was. It was making me miserable, until one day my husband snapped me out of my funk. He was blunt but honest, “This is where we are, get over it and accept it.” It was a punch to the gut, but it was true. Happiness is a choice, and once I accepted that fact, things started to brighten. I was able to see past the day to day and embrace the challenges in life with happiness. There are still bad days, but I am able to put them into perspective and move past them. It’s a slow process changing the way you view happiness, but once you start you will see how much joy you were missing out on! And that’s where I think Joanna speaks so much truth, they have so many blessings, but they were happy when they were broke and things were hard, which allows them to be happy when they are successful!

 I love how Chip approaches life, it’s one of the best ways I’ve ever heard to find true joy. “I told myself that I was going to live the rest of my life as if it were Saturday.”― Chip Gaines  If you treated each day like it was Saturday, what would you do? Would you do the things you truly enjoyed? Would you start making real changes? I’ve been struggling with this one for the past year, especially after I read The Magnolia Story. I wanted to live each day as if it were Saturday, but I was scared. What if I wasn’t good enough at my dreams, what if my dreams were unattainable, what if people made fun of me? I’ve always wanted to start blogging, traveling and trying new things. But I never thought I’d be good enough or that anyone would care. And while those fears are still very real for me. The lesson I took away from Chip is that, fear is natural, but letting it cripple you is where things get dangerous. Take strides each day to live like each day was Saturday. One step at a time will get you to your dream!

Lastly,  if we were to take a moment and stop planning our lives out, we might start to enjoy the surprises in life. As Joanna says, “If I had planned my life, it never would have ended up like this. So maybe it’s kind of fun not to plan. Maybe it’s more fun just to see where life takes you.”― Joanna Gaines   As hard as it may be to let go of control, it may just be the very best thing we could do. Let Go and Let God. Let Him take you down the path you were meant to go on. It will exceed your wildest expectations!

Being in Phoenix has helped me to grow up in so many ways that I never would have had I not left the comfort of Indiana. It forced my husband and I to rely on each other and not others for help and support. The move has taught us how to handle our differences and how to handle the challenges thrown at us. I never would have imagined living in Arizona, but it has been such a unique and wonderful experience. Letting go and letting God direct your life is the biggest blessing you could give yourself!

 

So today, I pray that you take time to care for yourself. To embrace happiness, to live life to the fullest, and to enjoy the twists and turns that come along the way! Make the most of every day you are given!

 

xoxo

Kayla

 

Best Airbnb For Your Hawaii Vacation!

My first trip to Nashville, Tennessee was for my friends bachelorette party. We ended up spending the weekend in an Airbnb home right outside the city. The home was well maintained, clean and was a great price. I loved that we had the privacy and comfort of a home even while we were on vacation. Ever since this trip, I have been dying to try out another Airbnb home!

That being said, today we are going to be looking for the best Airbnb homes available in Oahu, Hawaii. Mainly because if you are going to go to Hawaii, you should have the most magical experience possible. Let’s dive in!

Bay View Bungalow. Oh. My. Word. The perfect out of the city vacation home!

Talk about the most stunning view I have ever seen. If it was possible to convince my entire family to move to this home, I would in a heartbeat! The home is modest, clean and simple, but the views from your living room are UNBELIEVABLE! I can already envision sitting on the porch with a cup of coffee, enjoying the cool morning ocean breeze and enjoying the sound of the waves crashing on the beach shore. The reviews on this bungalow all rave the owners, the coziness of the home and the amazing views. And if this wasn’t enough to convince you to stay in this bungalow, let’s just talk about how it’s only $80/night! $80/night in Hawaii is an unbelievable deal, especially with this view! Jump on this deal and reserve your space for your next Hawaii trip!


 

Pearl City Guest Suite. Modern city vibes.

My favorite thing about this guest suite, is the modern edge is has. Not everyone wants to sit in the backwoods of Hawaii on vacation and that is completely understandable! For those that love the city life and want to experience this side of Hawaii, this suite is perfect for you! Newly constructed with modern appliances and a clean sheek look, this place is perfect for an adventurous trip! At only $70/night the prices are extremely affordable, and you are located only a few minutes from public transport to get you to your vacation excursions! And to top it all off this Airbnb suite hosts a five star rating.


Private Ohana Unit in Historical Haleiwa Town -Couples Retreat

This guesthouse is in a quiet and serene area of Oahu. There is a private access to the guesthouse, and the family has offered their assistance and provided various beach amenities to make your experience enjoyable! The beach and Haleiwa are within walking distance from you. Inside this guesthouse is a cozy bedroom and living room, with a small kitchen and a beautiful backyard to sit and relax in. What I love about this Airbnb is that between the owners offers to assist and help you and their consistent 5 star rating; there would never be a moment you couldn’t find what you were looking for in Oahu. At $99 dollars a night this would definitely be on my go to list when I visit Oahu!

 

I don’t know about you but if I am going to pay to go to Oahu, I want a nice place to stay and relax that’s within my budget. These places are perfect for anyone heading to Oahu and I encourage you to check out these locations on your next vacation!

Passion For Travel

I have always had a deep passion for travel.

There are few things in life that truly make you feel alive, and for me that is getting out and experiencing other cultures, historic structures and stunning views. But what if your passion seems unattainable? What if there is no feasible way to pursue the things you love in life?

When this happens, it causes me to sit down and think about why I have this passion, and what I can do with that passion.

If your like me and have a passion for traveling, but you can’t travel to all the places you’ve dreamed of going right now, take steps to still fulfill that travel ache within you. Your passions in life are there for a reason, and even if they do not seem feasible in the short term, there is a reason for them.

One thing I try to do is offer to go on business trips as often as possible. These trips aren’t always to places on my bucket list, but they give me the chance to get out of my everyday environment, explore new cities and see what they have to offer! We have a fun trip planned to New Mexico this summer for work; it’s not a place I had on my bucket list to see, but it is an opportunity to experience an entirely new state!

Another thing I like to do is start planning for future trips! I have a blast spending time researching the perfect places to stay, the best local cuisine in the area, and the exciting excursions to take while you are there. I’ve been working on a post about Oahu and I’ve spent hours finding the cutest little beach homes to rent. Most of these houses are away from large hotel chains and secluded in an area where you could enjoy the serenity of Hawaii. I absolutely loved envisioning what it would be like to stay there; feeling the ocean tickle your toes, smell the refreshing ocean breeze, and look out at the expansive ocean all around you.

It may not be sitting in the perfect vacation spot, but taking time to plan these trips and envision what could be is a great way to help satisfy your travel bug(at least for a while)!

Lastly, I love to explore the state I am in. There are so many unique areas in every state. So get in your car and drive to a place you’ve never been before. This year my husband and I are hoping to visit Tombstone and Horseshoe Bend. Both areas have their own unique charm, host stunning views, and are within a 2-4 hour drive of our home. Being able to take time to experience the areas all around us is such a blessing and something everyone should utilize.

Don’t let lack of accessibility to your bucket list stop you from exploring new places and enjoying your passion for travel!

 

Are You Living to Your Highest Potential?

Are you living to your highest potential?

My husband has never wavered from pursuing his dream, no matter the cost or the time, he has pursued his dream with passion and drive. It’s one of the most amazing things you will ever see. The drive and passion he has to be a doctor is unparalleled. It’s what makes me believe that people can really find their passions in life. However, watching someone drive forward in their dreams, really makes you look inward and ask yourself, “Am I living out my dream?”

If you are, you know it. Without a shadow of a doubt. However, when you aren’t you know it as well.

Are you sitting in your cubicle questioning why you are sitting there, or are you sitting there fulfilled knowing you are in the right place?

If you are sitting there thinking, “Is this really where I will be 5 years from now?” or “Am I excited to get up and head to the office this morning?” or does the phrase, “I can’t wait to go home” come out of your mouth every day?

I think the challenge is that as you get older, you face increasing responsibility and expectations of those around you. Expectations to succeed, expectations to be extraordinary. Being ordinary, or not having remarkable success is looked down upon. How do we navigate this world?

I think there are a few ways we can look at this. We can look at life as a series of hurdles we need to cross to be successful. We can hit all our goals, hit our salary targets, start our own business, and become successful in the eyes of others.

But I think the real question we need to ask ourselves is are we happy, are we fulfilled in what we are doing?

If we aren’t what can we do to change it?

I don’t have this figured out, I’m 24 years old, 2 ½ years out of college, I can say I am still figuring everything out!

But I do have some suggestions that I have learned.

Take time to think. Don’t rush. I think the biggest hurdle I have been facing is discovering my passion “in time”. There is no time limit to finding your passion in life. Some things take longer, some things require time. That’s okay! Take your time, research the things you are interested in. It will be worth it in the end.

Finding your passion is difficult. I have spent years struggling over the fact that I couldn’t find my passion in life. When I took a class called the 12 Week Year a couple weeks ago our instructor said, “lack of passion is lack of clarity.” Nothing has hit me more than that did. If we are lacking in passion, we are lacking in clarity. We are not clearly seeing our future, we are not clearly seeing what we want to be. I have been wrestling with this statement ever since. If I lack clarity, then maybe I have a passion in life, it’s just clouded by all the noise around me.

The noise around me is what is hard to decipher, are you happy in life or just content? The noise is what can stop you from moving from content to happy. And I believe this is where I get stuck a lot. You get content, not that its bad to be content, but you stop moving forward.

. Maybe the noise is stopping you today from taking a step back and looking at your life. If it is, take a step back today and allow yourself to look at your life in perspective. Are you on the path toward your dreams and passions or are you on a path of contentment that will never allow you to reach those dreams?

Valentines Day On a Budget

Valentines Day is such a beautiful and romantic day. Its a day to celebrate the love in your life. I absolutely love celebrating my husband and the many things he does for me every day of the year. Since we are in school, we agreed to no gifts this year. However, no gifts doesn’t mean you can’t show your significant other you love them. Below are my go to ideas for this Valentines Day!

1.) Love Notes. Probably my favorite thing you could do for a loved one is to write a note about why you love them. This isn’t just a simple, I love you note, its a deep meaningful note about why you love that person, why you need them and what they do to make you a better person. Valentines Day is the one day you should go all out, find your mushy gushy side and show your spouse all the reasons you love them. These notes will mean more than any gift ever could!

2.) My husband is a Mike and Ike fiend! He absolutely loves Mike and Ike’s and goes crazy when you give them to him. So these are a super cheap and easy way of showing him I love him on Valentines Day. Yes this is an easy option, but cliches became cliches for a reason. On your way home from work, grab a box of their favorite candy, wrap it in a bow and your done!

3.) Make coffee/breakfast before work. This Valentines Day falls on a Wednesday, get up early and have coffee and their favorite breakfast for them when they wake up. Arrange it on a serving tray and you have a simple but stunning beginning to Valentines Day. You wouldn’t believe how far this little act of love will go!

4.) Guys, take time to clean an area of your house, or finish a project that hasn’t been completed. These are nuisances that weigh on your significant other. Take an hour or two and finish them for her, she will be so appreciative and you will have gotten one of the best gifts possible while spending little to no money! Sometimes its doing something to relieve everyday stress that means the most.

5.) Plan your evening together. Take the initiative to have everything planned and ready to go. Don’t spend an hour saying what do you want to do over and over. If you aren’t sure what to do, plan what you want to do for dinner, have that nights movie or game ready to go, have the house cleaned up so their are no distractions and just go in happy and ready to make memories!

 

I’m not sure what your plans are this Valentines Day, but don’t do nothing just because you are on a tight budget, instead use it as an opportunity to be creative!

Three Spring Styles 2018

Today I just wanted to go through a couple items that are on my Spring Styles list this year! I’m so excited to start pulling these out and styling them this year. There are so many gorgeous items out there this year!

I’m in love with Bliss Tulle!  Their products are just gorgeous, the Juliet Tulle skirt is my favorite of their products. The color is absolutely stunning and the way they are styled is just beautiful. From the customer photos I’ve seen and the many tagged photos from weddings, bridal showers, and parties; Bliss Tulle skirts are making a huge impact on Instagram. The only downside for me is that their price range is a little too much for me to afford, I am hoping to get one in the next couple months though, what a stunning look!

The Juliet Tulle Skirt

I am head over heels with Ohh La Luxe, they have unbelievable customer service I got a great discount on my first order with them, and shipping was fast and easy. The dress I got was this Luna Wrap Dress, which fit perfectly, the quality was great and I got tons of compliments on how it looked! Wrap dresses are in almost every boutique I’ve seen this year and I am in love with how they look and how flattering they are.

I’m trying so hard to save this dress for my husband and I’s photo shoot in May!

Luna Wrap Dress

I also found out that Ohh La Luxe has a JoJo Fletcher line… this was the best thing I had seen all day! In case you didn’t know, I was in love with her when she was the Bachelorette. She is gorgeous, graceful, and honestly seems so humble and down to earth. I love that one of the items on her line was a simple white tee. I love a good white tee and this one is just stunning. It has a deep v and a large pocket on the left hand side. It’s one of my favorite purchases from Ohh La Luxe, it was perfect! (Now if I can just keep it that way!) Can’t wait to see how many ways I can style this tee this Spring!

JoJo Collection White Tee

Do you have any spring must have’s I should get?! I’m on the hunt for some adorable new clothes!