(Insert Fireworks, Toasts, Prayers, Fasts, and New Bible/Book Study Here)

WE have entered a new year, thank you Lord, and it could not come with MORE uncertainty. With a new head of state, there are new changes in government. Whether you agree or not, things are changing. New years also signal new seasons for some. (My season actually began changing in December, not January 1st. ) Lots of people resolve to make these huge changes in order to evoke something new. I stop resolving years ago. The resolutions didn’t come to pass. I didn’t take the steps to transition from then to the resolved issue. So you see, it wasn’t the resolution that didn’t work, it was me.

As I mature, if I can say that without giggling with sarcasm, I create goals for myself. While I do have a few annual goals, I much prefer my quarterly milestones. These are check points in order to help me look back on this year and see the actual transition come to its point of completion. I realized while I was encouraging sisters on my facebook page (Seven Days More), I had not created a solid God sized goal for Annlettered (Annlettered Home ). Once I sat down and started putting the dream on paper,  I realized the amount of commitment it would take. It also spurred research in areas that I am not well versed with yet. All of these are positives.

What isn’t positive: CLUTTER. Clutter will cause transitions to fail, schedules to be overbooked, and minds to ache. For example, if I pack my schedule to the brim with commitments, even if I mean well, I have no time for house cleaning, laundry, rest, and tasks that may seem mundane. Life doesn’t mandate that we become awesome in public and neglect the mundane. Once those mundane tasks become obtuse, you have now added more pressure to keep up outside of the home and inside which is in disarray. (This may not be your truth, add your specific situation here.) Just because you are awake 8-18 hours a day – which I often am, it doesn’t mean that you need to schedule every hour! One of my goals, which I didn’t accomplish last year, is to simplify. My schedule, responsibilities, house items, closet items (Can I get an amen here? Anyone clean their closet several times a year, but never see the relief?), and any other area where I feel I am just collecting things and not using them. We have become too loyal to clutter. Be like Elsa, “Let it Go”!

It is the time of transition. A new year. The first month of the year to start practices that can become habits. It requires discipline. It may not feel great in the beginning, but change doesn’t always come with butterflies. Do it now, enjoy it later.

Are there things you plan to change in 2017? I’d love to hear about them. Also, feel free to check out the links. 🙂

Ivy Out


WE are too impressed with right words, rather than right hearts…

I feel like I haven’t posted a blog in a lifetime. I apologize to anyone who has ever come to this blog for peace, comedy, sarcasm, or encouragement. The hiatus came on the heels of a lot of “life”.

Anywho. I have been feeling a lot lately. Is it just me? Not “in my feelings” like some of my friends and I blurt out during sensitive times, but actual feeling. I have been emoting. I have paid attention to the feelings that would consistently rise up. Not because they are supreme in my life, but they usually are a good thermometer for my heart. Emotions are to thermometer as heart is to thermostat. Let that sit with you for a bit. Brew over it like tea.

I had a very intimate conversation with several of my friends, at different times. Birthed from many exchanges, and prematurely inked on paper, I labor at this hour to produce my reunion blog. This is my reunion with my authentic voice. ::clears throat::

I have come to the conclusion that we often are too impressed with people’s right words instead of their right hearts. The biblical picture of this was the day future king David was anointed. Not initially considered for the invitation by his earthly father, David was tending to sheep- his father’s business. A world without social media alerts and instant feedback, David didn’t know he was the reason for the entire experience. Nor did the other human beings in attendance. One by one, David’s brothers were passed in front of the prophet and rejected by God for THIS assignment. It wasn’t the stunning and good-looking one. It wasn’t the next in line in their father’s lineage. It was young David. Not a mature David. Not the Goliath slayer (yet) David. It was young shepherd boy David. David smelled like sheep. It didn’t stop the anointing. God chose David because of his heart. We would later read and celebrate David because he was a man after God’s own heart. This was the same David that was passed over at his own party.

In 2015 we are often deceived by crafty, well thought out, and methodically organized words. After the hamster wheel of “nope”, “not you”, and the proverbial “haven’t I heart this already”, right words can be music to bruised ears. I am reaching here, but I believe both men and women are tired of both itching ears and bruised ones. Bruised ears have been abused with lies, fluff, and the noise pollution that comes from empty plotting people. (Subsequently, it could also come from negative news, social media, and strangers trapped in the friend zone that will never surface in a genuine light because it’s just not in them.) Right words can sound like a soothing balm…unless they are coming from someone with the wrong heart. My words are heavy, but my message is clear.

Your words could be mere lip service if your heart isn’t pure. If your motives aren’t pure, your heart is tainted with schemes, malice, or even disdain. Some people mean you no good. They simply are after what God is doing in you during a particular season. IS this FOR everybody? You can be the judge of that. My message is simply this: watch what you allow in. Filter your existence. Satan was an angel at one point, he knows word too.