NOTICE

At the time of publication, all recipes were free of the allergens listed as being free of in the title (i.e. soy-free, milk-free, etc.), and all other information shared was accurate to the best of my knowledge.
Though I strive to update outdated information quickly and work diligently to make sure you have the most accurate information possible at all times, it is your duty to double check labels EVERY TIME to ensure that the ingredients you use are SAFE FOR YOU.
DO NOT RELY SOLELY ON THIS INFORMATION AS INGREDIENTS AND INFORMATION DO CHANGE.
Your doctor or allergist should also be your first go-to for information on how to handle your medical needs. That being said, if you DO notice an error, please send me an email letting me know (tell me what page or recipe the error is on, what the error is, etc.), and I will correct the error ASAP.
Thank you so much!

Please Be Advised:
I make sure all of my recipes use foods that are free of the allergens they say they are free of. You will need to do the same. For help with this, please see the appropriate "Alternative Names" page for the allergen(s) you need the recipe free of.

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Saturday, September 21, 2019

Recent Reflections - September 2019: My Oldest Is A Senior In High School...



This is the ninth Recent Reflections post of 2019.  Recent Reflections goes live the third Friday or Saturday of each month.  Each Recent Reflections post covers something that I'm reflecting on.  If you'd like to share a post with a similar theme, feel free to leave a comment with a link to your post, and I'll hop on over and leave a comment (and maybe some other readers will, too).

This month, I will be reflecting on my oldest being a senior in high school.

Then...
First Day of Kindergarten, 2007


and
Now...
First Day of Senior Year, 2019


I can hardly believe the my little man is no longer a little man, but a full-grown man!  In a few weeks he'll be 17, and in a about 8 months he'll be graduating high school!  That just blows my mind.  Wasn't it just yesterday that I was writing that he was turning 10?  How on earth did we get here?  Time moves the quickest when you want it to move the slowest.

Now, readers, the rest of this post is an open letter to my son, so forgive me if it gets sappy. :)

My dearest Stephen, 

Son, let me get real here...  

First, I love you more than you'll ever understand until you have your own children (Lord willing) one day.  Never, ever forget that.  You can never do anything that will make me not love you, so let me (and your dad) be the first one you go to when life gets hard or when you think you've done something unforgivable.  I promise the love will still be there, and we will work on the rest.  May you never have to face that day (and I pray you won't), but I just want to put it out there that I will always be here for you, no matter what.  That doesn't mean there won't be consequences for wrong choices - there always are - but we will be by your side to help you through it and pray that that time will be the last time we have to do so.  If not, we'll just keep loving you and praying for you like always.  And as a side note, let's try not to use this option, shall we, son? :)  I know we'd both prefer to not have to deal with this kind of hurt, so let's just keep doing right things, ok?  Ok. :D

Secondly, I am amazed every day at the man you are maturing into.  I am not looking forward to the day you move out, be it to college or to a job or whatever the reason, but I know that you will do well no matter what God has in store for you as long as you continue to put Him first.  I am excited for this next phase in your life...even if it will be bittersweet.  

Thirdly, keep your eyes on God!  He will never steer you wrong.  The days will get hard - expect it.  There will be days when you wonder if He is still there or listening to your prayers.  I promise - He is.  He is teaching you something, He is guiding, He is waiting for you to yield or learn, He is leading you down a path that is necessary for you to become who you are meant to be, or any other number of things, but He is also wanting to hold you up through the hard times.  God is not desirous to hurt you, but hurt is in this world because sin is.  You will face pain because we all do...but you don't have to face it alone.  God is there, and we (your dad and I, along with your extended family and church family) will be there to help you through.  So, those days when you feel alone, get in your Bible, keep praying, call your parents for prayer support, stay in church and counsel with your pastor.  All those things will help encourage you on the darkest days that I pray you have very few of.

Fourth, I am so proud of you!  You give of your time and yourself without thought of how it will benefit you because it is the right thing to do, you play with your siblings and (normally) let them have equal say in what you all do, you do the job you say you are going to do and then some, you love to discuss things with us, and you show that you love instead of just saying it.  On top of that, I can very clearly see that you love the Lord and desire to do His will.  You may not know exactly what your next step will be after high school yet, but we'll figure that out.  Just keep asking God to guide you, listen to the advice from those who love the Lord and want His perfect will for your life, and I know you'll do amazing things for Him and in your life!

I love you, my not-so-little man!
-Mom


I truly hope this post has been a blessing to your heart, or at the least made you stop and think a little.  What has God done in your life lately to bless you?  What are you reflecting on?

Have a wonderful weekend!