When all else fails, learn.

No one likes to lose. Seriously, let’s be honest. When we put effort behind something and then it doesn’t work out the way you envisioned it, it’s the anvil that weighs you down. There’s just this little nagging truth. We learn a great deal when we lose.

Go ahead. Get mad at me. I knew it would happen. It’s not me, it’s the truth.

When I think about my 2019 I have two overwhelming feelings. One, I made some decisions that didn’t work. As in, I was warned and didn’t heed the warning. So, when these decisions didn’t end well for me… it hurt twice as bad. However, it forced me to reevaluate my thought process. It made me look at what my decisions prompted. Honestly, I am grateful for the thought interrupt. It was a detour that I needed to comprehend now. I don’t want to get to 2025 and have the same outcome. The only way to change the outcome is to change the actions and thoughts that got me there.

The second overwhelming feeling I have is GRATITUDE. I don’t look like what I have been through. Sincerely, most of the battles I fought were not plastered publicly. I doubt many of them were easily identifiable, even to the people closest to me. I had to reevaluate how I viewed my friends AND me as a friend.


Me, as a friend. It is very easy to become critical of the people you call friend based on what they do or don’t do. It’s another thing to look at one’s self and give that same energy. I had to realize that I don’t pick up the phone and call people like I should. Over the years, I think texting and social media became my cop-out way of checking on people. Then, when people began to institute digital wellness (i.e. logging off and really perfecting face (2 face) time…) then I lost connection. Not because feelings were lost, but because my cop out was tapped out. (Insert me waving a white flag) The other culprit, change of environment. Two years ago I changed churches. That seems like a big deal to some…because…black people don’t often change churches. Those who regularly attend and serve become loyal to the building as if God isn’t present in others. Yes, church sarcasm. You’ll be ok. I am saying what some won’t. I still love my old church, but God told me to move on. I am super glad I did. What I was worried about, was staying connected to those I used to see weekly. I can admit that the connections aren’t the same, but I haven’t lost them. I just have to work harder to speak to them, since we don’t conveniently see each other weekly.

THERE’S THE REVELATION FOLKS… SHIPS are WORK. Friendship, Relationship, and any other ship that involves interaction and connection between two or more individuals. Even staying digitally connected to my blog audience is a struggle some times. Not because I don’t want to. The desire is ALWAYS present. My schedule, clear thoughts, planning and execution… those things don’t always align. Attached to the revelation is the fear that maybe I don’t measure up as a friend. Maybe I don’t reach out enough. Did something major happen and I missed it? Was I there when they needed me? Half the battle is showing up, did I? This is less about if it was noticed and more about the intention.

Hindsight is plenty clear. While I know I have some work to do, I did set out to be intentional about my connections about a year ago. Loosing #superdad in 2015 reminded me how precious life is. It put some of life’s great and horrible moments in perspective like a permanent contact lens. I am grateful for grace and mercy and friends that extend that to me. I then also extend that to them. I don’t think I am the only one who needs to work on intentional connections, re-connections, or learning when to let “well enough” be enough. Some people are good and just NOT going with you into your next season.

Say it with me friends, “Just let them go”. I know. I’ll be the bad guy for the truth. We have to honor seasons. Believe it or not, they change without your permission. Some of the people who were closest to you in previous seasons will not be adding your to their Christmas card list. (Non-Shameless Plug… want custom Christmas Cards handmade for your circle> email , you can also check out work on and ) When the calls stop, the texts diminish, and the face time is non-existent, say a prayer for their good and move ON. Not because you dislike them or harbor ill will, the page turned. The page WILL turn on some people. It’s ok. LEARN.

The loudest lessons this year were taught when I fell, cried, prayed, screamed, and just went to sleep because at the time… that’s all I could do. I don’t profess to have all the answers. I wouldn’t want that burden anyway. I do know how to pray. When people connect with me for prayer – I take that seriously. The mess ups prompt me to pray too. Urgent and Life altering prayers like… “fix it Jesus” and “I surrender Lord”. I know that when I mess up, my default is shifting to JESUS. I know that not every amazing event will include space for me – but that doesn’t change the fact that the event is dope. Not being included used to make me feel some kind of way… one of those lessons showed me that it’s usually not anything personal. So, I learned.

Some won’t like this. That’s ok too. Welcome to Some of the opinions of the author will not be accepted as general consensus. It’s supposed to be that way.. group think doesn’t go with my heart. (get it.. this (insert thing) doesn’t go with my outfit… )

When you don’t win, you learn. You should. Reflect and grow. Tis the season.

Ivy Out.


#2017 Those I lost…


2017 showed me the real truth when it comes to people’s season in my life. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 reminds me that there is a season for everything. And while I knew this before, when you start losing friends it’s hard to digest.

I have been privileged to have some A-MAZING people to come into my life and plant forever roots. I mean, they are literally there no matter how beautiful or ugly my life has gotten. They caught tears, bought art and tees, they broke bread with me, some of them even supported my financial drought. I mean, I thank God the people that refuse to leave me, no matter how long we go without speaking to each other. Let’s be real, with some of our schedules and the schedule’s schedule it’s a great deal of awesome to have friends that just pick up where you left off. Thank you Lord for allowing each of these people into my life, in their proper season.

I also thank God for those who came in, even though they left. This is hard to type. Some people existed my life this year. We no longer talk. We don’t DM, or text, or message, or video, or smoke signal, or passenger pigeon…nothing. Once, heavy communicators are now memories and archives. Letting go is just as important as receiving. It’s hard. It can hurt. It’s still a part of life.

becareful with your words

Some of the people that left my life were men, and it just didn’t work out. That doesn’t make them bad men. They just weren’t the right one for me. That’s ok. Thank God for the King of my heart. He validates that the Lord DOES HEAR MY PRAYERS…and He answers them too! Some of the people that exited were best friends. I am not happy that we no longer talk, but I still wish God’s best for you too. I pray that this next season for you all is the best yet. I am grateful for the memories we made. While you may not speak to me, I still love you. That’s the truth.

2017 taught me how to let go, in love.

God knew i needed you

Feature Number Two is my Sis LaToya.

I asked my sisters how God grew them in 2017.

I believe reflection is a gift from God. I am a woman who likes to journal. That includes anything from prayers to lists.  Now the beauty of this is in the reflection.  To go back and read some of my prayer requests and praise reports amaze me.  What surprised me is the amount of prayers in my journals that were not answered and the joy that I had that God blocked my requests not only to protect me but because He loved me. In particular,  there was 1 prayer request (will discuss later) that was repeated umpteenth times and it just got answered this year.  It took 7 years! Yep,  7 years for God to finally say Yes. What’s funny is I wasn’t waiting on God,  He was waiting on me.  God didn’t just grow me in 2017. It didn’t happen overnight. Have you heard the story of the Chinese Bamboo Tree? If you haven’t,  take a moment to visit this link and come back and finish reading…

Now that you have read up on the Bamboo Tree you can probably guess that I’m going to tell you, “I’m like the bamboo tree”. You see that prayer request from 7 years ago was for a husband.  Yep,  I was praying for a man y’all… and don’t act like you haven’t done it! Lol.  God didn’t answer until 12.17.17. 7 YEARS LATER. The number 7 represents completeness and perfection both physically and spiritually.  After 1 1/2 years of a Christ- centered courtship (abstinence until marriage,  relationship centered around Christ…we pray together and for one another) my love got down on one knee and asked me to be his forever as His wife!!!!! God is good y’all. Now let me tell you where the true reflection came in…. the CONGRATULATIONS on social media.  It was almost overwhelming. Everyone showing love and sending well wishes felt good but what really touched me were the private Facebook messages,  the texts and phone calls from those who really knew my journey up to this point…. those who knew and saw first hand the pain, hurt, prayer, faith and GROWTH that took over 7 years to get to this moment.

In order for God to have grown and blessed me with an answered prayer in 2017, I had to surrender in 2010, be obedient 2010-2017, be steadfast in prayer,  faithful in God’s word,  a believer in God’s promises and apply it to my everyday life.  God grew my senses. I ate on His word everyday and let me tell you,  NOTHING tasted better.  I read His word daily to make sure I could see Him working miracles. I listened to my Pastor preach sermons that seemed to be just for me… sometimes it was like fingernails scratching a chalkboard but more often than not; it was music to my ears. I would take walks in the park or lay out on a blanket to mediate and the smell of the fresh flowers and the feel of the breeze would remind me that God was always with me and would never leave me.  My roots are what grew most this year.  Deeper in connection with the source, God.  Dependence on Him changed my life. My Faith sprouted beyond what I could see or even imagine. Thoughts became praise reports before I could even make them prayers. A journal entry prayer request in 2010 GREW into a praise report in 2017. If you want God to grow you, you have to FIRST surrender and then the growth will be limitless.

A Grower in God,




Pink Note, Treble and Bass

It’s been a long time since something could move me to a place of drifting so deep in art

That the hemoglobin in my veins take a back seat to this feeling

This place that I drift in

 wraps itself around me like a strait jacket

Long enough for me to stop fighting and just exist in one with where I am

It envelopes me long enough for me to realize that it’s familiar

I belong here

Justified in the brilliance of notes on staff, I intrude in on the conductor

I am a part of the music, the missing element in the symphony

I have become less of the rest and more of the stem on an eighth note

In conjunction with breathing

I hear

I feel

The music creating a stir in my vocal chords, lost in the beauty of sound

I speak words in tune, not quite singing yet

Some would call it poetry

It’s just the language I speak.

Hope that someone can interpret for the commoners

Or those common to English. This doesn’t have restrictions and rules

It just is.

I just am.

Present in this moment that I am breathing music. I am being music.

The melodic state of being.

Then something hits me.

It is the evolution of a key change. A game changer.

It’s love.

Love can make minor chord clashes seem like symbols

Staccato glitter sprinkled among the staff like the beauty of shattered glass

Reflecting amber light from dawn

It’s a beginning.

Love can color music and paint pictures that even those with untrained eyes can see

Defying logic, love even makes science bearable.

Unapologetic and without permission, it invades space and time

Love is a continuum of life

Opposite of existing, it springs to, in and through all who are willing

For the unable, it disables their ability to analyze until it is acknowledged

This place is familiar because I was created here.

I create here

He who makes beautiful things out of us purposed me for this place

No seatbelts or safety precautions

No limitations of negotiation necessary

I have fallen with no need to feel the foundation of someone else’s ground

I can forever drift here

I can exist here

I can cast my ballot for permanent citizenship in a place where colors burst

From executed staffs that govern many instruments

On the canvas of my eyes and glitters sparkles over the dash

The pace between birth and return



Special love and adoration sent to a friend whose notes won’t leave my head and the short story “I Wish I Was a Poet” by the late and great Alice Childress. 

Ivy Out.



Grown Up. Not in age… in wisdom. Wisdom comes from God…

In this place, my default is worship. After realizing that I’ve been complaining about stuff only God can change, I stopped. Waking up and spending more time gathering things for others than self, finding the amazing framing of colors surrounding the dawn sky mesmerizing because only God can paint it that way, I realize that I am truly growing up. 

Not growing perfect. 

Not growing superior. 

Growing up. 

I can almost feel the scolding when I am thinking, walking, or talking wrong. Not that I’m at the “just don’t do it” phase all the time, but I know the chastisement is near. I can also feel the shifts as they roll in. I’ve felt the season changing for a while (blogged about it back in January) and today felt like fresh wind. It had some ups and downs because we now have four school days left, but the highs carried me into tonight’s worship. My alone time with God. It usually starts in the car because of long commutes, but it started in my classroom. I sat down to gather my things and started singing. Now if you know me, really know me, you know I don’t like to draw attention to my voice. However, I posted twelve seconds of this little song service. When I got in my vehicle, I turned on Pandora (to my Tye Tribbett station) and kept on singing. I cried all the way home. I parked and started shuffling in my car seat once I made it to the garage. 

Why am I sharing? Simple. You don’t need an audience of people to worship and praise God. I am NOT against corporate worship, but you should have the kind of relationship with your friend Jesus that you can just go to Him anywhere. IF not friend JESUS, then what about mother or father JESUS, brother JESUS, doctor or lawyer JESUS…. He is what you need. He answers prayers. Seriously. The suddenly type, the not right now type, and the confirm His Will and Word type, Jesus answers prayer. 

The beginning of my evening was just adoring Him. By the time I got home I was crying out to Him. I want Him to know, that I know, that He is my only solution…. He can heal my family. He can better my situation. He can direct my life. He can improve certain things about my job. He can FIX ME. He can… insert what you need the Lord to do. Just seriously bring it to Him. Unload it at your worship place. Let it all go into the hands of the Master. 

walk away lighter. 

Great Night.

ivy out.


Writing for a miracle or at least clarity…

How many times have you started a writing project, only to scrap all of your brainstorming? It wasn’t even worth recycling. I forget how taxing the gift of writing can be when you aren’t in a “writing mood”. It’s almost like the weather, sometimes you feel like being outside. However, in the midst of Texas heat, sometimes you don’t. 

Today was interesting. I over think most of the time. Attempt to break down things to get to the simple core so that mental digestion is easier. I look for connections and patterns, links, and clues. Today, right now, I exist. I am in this place where God is leading and I am following. I trust Him. I have no idea what this next season holds, I just know it finally feels different. It isn’t the impending birthday that fast approaches, or the new decade that it brings. It isn’t any sudden health changes, or weeks of the month differences. It genuinely feels different. 

I am holding on to the One, I Am that I AM. I know that I am putting effort, thought and breath into living the best life I can live. I worship, praise, pray, read, study, and journal. I give – time, talent, and money. I deduce only this: the rain soon come. 


Living in GREAT expectation, 

Ivy Out





1 Peter 3:1-7

1Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, 2when they see the purity and reverence of your lives. 3Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. 4Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. 5For this is the way the holy women of the past who put their hope in God used to adorn themselves. They submitted themselves to their own husbands, 6like Sarah, who obeyed Abraham and called him her lord. You are her daughters if you do what is right and do not give way to fear.
7Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.


During some studying today I came across this passage. IT FLOORS ME. Not that I haven’t read it before, but I am blown away by something underlined. Even if HE isn’t a believer of the word, HER behavior may win him over. 

There are a lot of shows on television that depict women as these overzealous, emotional extremists who do very little to exert or show self-control. There are males who base their impressions of a woman by what she says, but I employ women to begin showing who they are without saying a word. This is the “silence is golden” principle my grandmother used to teach me. 

It’s also very interesting with how this passage begins and ends. Verse one speaks to a women’s behavior (stemming from the word anastrophe which literally means “manner of life”) winning (kerdaino) the husband over to the kingdom. Making him a believer of the Word, of God, not by how loudly she speaks, but by the very way she lives. The beef in this hamburger is… the fact that it’s not the outer adornment but the inner beauty that holds the true value. No plastic surgeon is going to be happy with this blog. Funny thing, if I may, is realizing that our culture is asphyxiated on aesthetics that hold little value because it’s ever changing. The end of this passage, verse seven, ends with “Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.” 

I want to pull something out for you: Respect the weaker partner as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life. The amplified version reads this way: “In the same way you married men should live considerately with [your wives], with an intelligent recognition [of the marriage relation], honoring the woman as [physically] the weaker, but [realizing that you] are joint heirs of the grace (God’s unmerited favor) of life” 

For those who would seem to thwart being called the “weaker vessel” I draw attention to the roots of the word according to Strong’s concordance. That being alpha the first letter of the greek alphabet (beginning) and sthenoō with means to strengthen. The first to strengthen… really God? So you mean like in Ephesians 5:26 when the husband is told to sanctify his wife, cleansing her and washing her with the word. This is a complete full circle for me. There is so much here that I am struggling with my verbiage so I don’t destroy the immense-ness of this passage.  To add to that… JOINT heirs of the GRACE OF LIFE.

seriously, I am on spiritual overload… then the VERY end “so that nothing will hinder your prayers.” Might I submit food for thought here:

 Proverbs 18:22 He who finds a wife finds what is good

and receives favor from the Lord.


There is favor attached to the marriage union. There is a hindrance of prayer when man steps out of what he was created to do. There are problems when women attempt to verbally change a man, or live in such a way that her inner beauty is stifled.


Today, I grew up.

 Ivy Out


familiar text

So yesterday during my extended study/lax/reading time before Bible study I went to a familiar text to review…Ruth.

Now, I have read this book many times. Two years ago I taught a Bible study at my house with Ruth and Esther as the foundation. I even juxtaposed the preparation difference between the two thinking Ruth’s was significantly short. YESTERDAY I was corrected. She gleaned for the REST of Barley season. When I started looking at information that gave way to the length of this season…I gathered at least 5-6 months. Why is this significant? Glad you ask… I am a woman. Most women anticipate relationships or connections..and we get nervous if we don’t know anything definitive. I am also VERY honest. One thing being single taught me was to glean. Garner wisdom and knowledge from viable sources and respect time. God set time in motion and it doesn’t go backward or bend to human will. Ruth gleaned in this field at the instruction of Boaz and her mother-in-law Naomi. She FOLLOWED INSTRUCTIONS. She was PATIENT. She didn’t know Naomi was going to suggest Boaz redeem her, until she suggested it.

I kind of POPPED UP out of my comfortable reading position when things began to click. Often times, when we don’t follow the wisdom available to us, we move out of turn. We anticipate moves before it’s time. When we do this, we destroy order. (or we make emotional decisions and ignore wisdom)

The last thing I will leave you with is this: twice I can point out the fact that Ruth’s character preceded her. The people around her knew of her. They had nothing negative to say. Are we living in a way that people have nothing negative to say about our character? As a single woman, it doesn’t behove me to have a bunch of people doubting my character, suitors or not. I am not referring to those who are just malicious and vindictive. Boaz mentioned her character TWO significant times for good reason(s).

I have more reading to do…I will continue to share as I read. Growth is a process. I see growth in my life, but I’m not close to the pinnacle.

Ivy Out



SOOO, anyone else beat their alarm clock this morning? The ten minutes of coveted “snooze” time… is what I lost this morning. Not even a shed tear or a complaint shall dust my lips for it! It’s now officially Wednesday!

As a kid, I loved school (might be why I keep going back). Wednesday meant we were close to FRIDAY! As adults, we get excited for a different type of Wednesday joy. Child-like-me knew there were less responsibility on weekends. I could hang out with friends (as much as an adolescent could ‘hang out’), I could relax, I could sleep, and IF it was the week of my birthday, I’d feel like a princess!

Why do we let go of the sheer innocence of anticipation when we grow up? I know we have bills/expenditures, responsibilities, families, and “stuff” to handle, but why not face it like a kid? Adults can become stiff and stuffy when we so easily forget our innocence.

Saturday I celebrate 29. I believe now more than ever…I appreciate children’s ability to get excited over anything! Last night at church, a small baby got excited because he could walk well! He kept walking laps back and forth, turning and smiling! During one of those reps, he walked up to my left leg and hugged my calf. ::CAN YOU SAY MELT MY HEART?!?:: That made my night!

It was the sweetness of the gesture during his victory laps that inspired this post! Find something to get excited about! Find someone to share it with…and know that it’s WEDNESDAY;)

Ivy out


Who’s your secret you?

I read something on a social network today that got my attention…”The Secret Life of…”

Seriously, with hyperspeed Internet, networking, and telecom, you mean to tell me that people still keep secrets? After “the lingerie secret” came out…ok now…

I Kid, but honestly, are you hiding your greatest self? Are there gifts, talents, hopes, and dreams that have been implanted inside of you? Is your best “you” dormant? Sometimes, out of circumstance or fear, we hold back our greatness for the “sake of others”. I truly believe that Marianne Williamson was on to something when she said, “AS WE LET OUR OWN LIGHT SHINE, WE UNCONSCIOUSLY GIVE OTHER PEOPLE PERMISSION TO DO THE SAME”. How brilliant a concept!

I don’t know everybody, but SOMEbody needs to know that we are waiting. We are waiting for the best that you are! There is a barrage of greatness in a fusion cell waiting on your permission. Give birth to that greatness so that the past due brilliance doesn’t turn into a cancer of “I should haves” or “I wish I would haves”.

Your gifts WILL make room for you. It’s time to acknowledge them!

Ivy Out