The Struggle is Real

The Struggle is Real

Seriously, we all have struggles and they are all very real. We struggle with things both big and small, on a daily basis, whether it be finances, relationships, jobs, school, our mental or emotional states, etc. Jesus said we’d go through trials and tribulations but to take heart because he has overcome the world. That doesn’t mean, however, that we just succumb to our struggles. We don’t need to waller in self-pity nor should we waste the days away complaining. We need to trust God to help us, and we have to be willing to work! 

Recently I’ve been dealing with some of my own struggles. For example, I’m getting used to being on a schedule again and getting back into the swing of all thing teaching. It’s a busy job and I am constantly thinking about 20+ things all at once. Many of you know I also gave up my second job and things were looking pretty tight. Now let’s face it, we all know that finances can cause serious trouble in relationships. We have had to cut back on a lot of spending and put a budget in place. But we are also at that point again where it’s time to purchase health insurance. Let me just dump out my wallet now. Thankfully, my husband and I have a strong foundation.

I have not, however, let my struggle define me. I have put total faith in God and allowed him to take control in my teaching job as well as my Young Living business. My days as a teacher have been smooth and my Young Living business is growing! Just last month I was able to earn enough to pay one of my bills which is a HUGE blessing to me because that’s weight off of my shoulders and because I’ve been able to spend more time with the boys. I’m teaching classes left and right but where I teach a single 2 hour class, I used to be working a 6-8 hour shift at Starbucks. No thank you. I’d choose the classes any day. Plus I’m helping people get on the right track to health and wellness. That’s a blessing in itself right there.

With that being said, I love you guys. I am so grateful for those of you who read and follow my blog and for your continued support. I pray that you don’t give in to your struggles and that you find a strong support system. This life is not meant to be lived alone. If you need prayer, leave me a comment. I’d be more than honored to pray for whatever it is you’re going through right now. Have a great night everyone.


Preparing for Change

Preparing for Change

In life, things change every day. But there are some things we do over and over and over again every day for years and years. For me, that was Starbucks. I loved working for that company. I was with them for 6 years. I loved my coworkers and my every day regular customers. They made the job special. On top of all this, Starbucks provided me and my family with top of the line health insurance at such a low rate it would blow your mind. The job provided me with extra income as well as free coffee and tea. 

Although I am passionate about coffee, I am also passionate about teaching, which is why I’ve decided to leave Starbucks for good and fully pursue my teaching career. I taught last year and worked at Starbucks at the same time but I felt like my teaching career was lacking because of how much time I had to invest in Starbucks as well. This is a hard decision because I’m leaving behind an extra income, my health care, and a family. But I’m also gaining time with my own family and keeping myself healthy by not allowing myself to get burnt out. Preparing for this meant creating a strict budget and finding new affordable health care. I also had to prepare myself mentally because I was leaving behind such a huge part of my life. Change number 1.

Change number 2. Both of my children will be at school with me this year!! A great change that I am thankful for yet saddened by. My sweet boys are growing up. Gabe will be in kindergarten and Joseph in preschool. This summer Gabe and I really worked hard preparing him for handwriting and rule following. It’s been quite the challenge. 

Time really does fly when you’re too busy to realize they’re growing! I can’t miss anymore time with them. And to all of you who were guessing that I’m pregnant, I’m not. I promise.

Finally, change number 3. God has done so much for James and I as a couple and this was one of the most precious; allowing us to be baptized together. This was a moment that I will cherish forever. And we are forever changed by it. We are thankful to have found a church home that has inspired us from the get go; teaching us, loving us, feeding us the word. Getting baptized marks a new chapter in our lives because we are new and washed clean in the eyes of our father. 

These changes may not seem big to you, but our family has already been blessed by following God’s lead. We were worried about our finances and those worries were hushed with bonuses we weren’t expecting, great success with my new business, and an all too generous gift from a friend who was saying thank you for a favor we did.

I hope you are blessed by my words that no matter how big or small the changes in your life are, follow the path God has for you and he will show you his love and kindness.



Not another “Birth Without Fear” Blog Post

Not another “Birth Without Fear” Blog Post

With Gabe’s birthday just passing (July 15th) I thought this would be a good time to share about his birth (and my other one in comparison). I’ve never shared them publicly before so here we go!

BEFORE I get started I just want to give a trigger warning. I’m going to talk about many things birth (c-section, loss, etc.); things I’ve experienced as well as things I haven’t. I have spoken with many mamas who have shared their stories with me though and I’m appreciative of what I have learned from them.

Gabe’s birth was today’s typical birth. I was sent to the hospital by my doctor’s office because I was starting to dilate and was having silent contractions. I was also being monitored for preeclampsia, which I did not end up having. I got there and was progressing after a two hour walk around the hospital so they admitted me. I didn’t progress much after that walk. Now, I had a plan and I was trying to stick to it but as we all know, things don’t always go as planned. I couldn’t eat so I was stressed out and hangry! I was on so many fluids that I was in the bathroom constantly. They got mad at how often I was up. Anyway, I didn’t get any rest because he was obviously getting ready to come and was in such a weird position that I was in hardcore pain. Not contraction pain, but just a constant ache in one side of my stomach that would not ease up. Long story short, the next morning my doctor broke my water to help me progress. I did, a little, but not as much as they wanted me to so of course they presented the option of pitocin because if I didn’t progress quickly enough they’d have to do a c-section. Well I wasn’t doing that so I was like alright hit me with the pitocin. If you’ve ever had that, you know it kicks things into gear real quick and those contractions are harsh. So I’m like bawling my eyes out because I hadn’t planned to get an epidural but my nurse (I loved my nurse by the way) was like, “Are you ready for the epidural now?” I was like heck yes go get that needle! The anesthesiologist came in and did the epidural for me but with my luck, he messed it up and it wore off completely in two hours so I had to have it done AGAIN. It doesn’t suck as bad the second time around, so if this ever happens to you, don’t fret. Soon after I got my second epidural, Gabe was ready to make his appearance. He was a beautiful baby. 7lbs, 1 oz of pure beauty.

Now that wasn’t the birth I wanted but it happened that way. I wanted a natural birth but I wasn’t ready for it. I wasn’t in the right state of mind and I didn’t have any support from anyone around me. Most people looked at me like I had two heads when I said I wanted a natural birth. Like, who would want to feel pain when you don’t have to? I also got the, “yeah right, wait until you’re in labor.” So, because I am me, I chose to have Joseph at a birth center. I had all the support I needed and had a peaceful, natural water birth. It was beautiful. PLEASE KEEP READING.

Both of my births were beautiful because I got to go home with a new life that I had grown and nourished with my own body. While one didn’t go as I had planned it, I still had my baby and I should have been grateful for that because some women do not get the chance to bring their babies home. Some women do not get the chance to birth their babies vaginally and have to go through an emergency c-section. Or maybe they planned a c-section because they were a high risk and that was the best option to keep mom and baby safe.

I see so many women and mothers judging each other each day for the things they have gone through or the choices they have made as parents. I USED TO BE LIKE THAT! And I hate that I was. As I have grown as a person, I have learned that it is not my choice but theirs. Or maybe they had no choice. We as mothers and parents need to support each other. It doesn’t matter if we breast feed or formula feed, we’re still feeding our babies. It doesn’t matter if we work or we stay home, we’re still taking care of our babies. It doesn’t matter if we gave birth vaginally or had a c-section, we still birthed our babies!

When I see the phrase “birth without fear” I want to shout from the mountain tops that to birth without fear means to do what is right and what is best for you as a mother and a human being. If you are afraid of the pain or feel you can’t bear it, get an epidural or other type of medicine. If you are afraid of having a c-section, research it and put your mind at ease because you never know what is going to happen during labor. If you don’t want the medicines and want to do it naturally, do your research, take classes, and get support! Mamas, don’t judge; especially if you don’t know the whole story. Lets support, encourage, and give/take advice from each other. There is enough judgement in every other aspect in this world that we have to worry about. Enjoy being a parent.

Thanks for reading! If you’ve experienced a traumatic birth, I encourage you to hop on over and read my good friend Alyssa’s post called Searching for Peace in the Unexpected. I think you will find some encouragement there. Goodnight everyone!



I can’t believe my big boy is 5!

Gabe LegoLand

Fighting Fear

Fighting Fear

Right now we are on vacation in North Carolina. Today we took my sweet Gabe out on my father in law’s boat to go fishing (it was his first time fishing on a boat on a giant lake so this was a big deal to him). After being there for a little while he started whining and complaining about all kinds of things, not catching fish, it’s too hot, I’m hungry, I want to go home, etc. We knew he was getting bored so we figured, let’s jump in and take him swimming. He’ll cool off and have some fun. That was not the case. He was so afraid to go in because he couldn’t see what was in the water. We kept telling him over and over, there’s nothing in the water, daddy is swimming right there, you have your life jacket on, you aren’t going to go under!

Isn’t life like that sometimes though? I used to be afraid of the dark because I couldn’t see what was in the dark. I was afraid of taking the teaching job (that I now love) because of past experiences and because I didn’t know if I’d enjoy it again. I was afraid of starting my Young Living business because I didn’t know if I’d be successful or not (I still don’t know because I just started but I’m doing it, you can support me here if you’d like!). 

That’s just like FEAR; to creep in and steal our joy, our success, our opportunities. What we have to realize though is, when fear takes away all those things, it’s because we let it. We let it come in instead of shutting the door in its face and saying “Nope! Not today fear!” And then it controls us rather than us controlling it. Let it go! (For all who get that reference, you’re welcome). We have the power to say no to fear!

I want you to know that eventually, Gabe got in the water. He was still afraid but he wasn’t letting it control him. His heavy breathing eventually slowed, and pretty soon we had to force him to get out of the water. He didn’t want to leave and was begging to go back again soon! I couldn’t help but laugh and roll my eyes at him when he said, “Hey that wasn’t so bad after all!” (Oh the mouths of 5 year olds).

So my encouragement for you today is, please do not let fear control your life. If there is a decision that needs to be made that you are fearful of, pray about it (and make sure you listen for the answer). Talk with someone you trust who is also wise and won’t take part in any negativity. If you let fear control you, you will never reach your full potential and God’s purpose for your life.

Thanks for reading! Have a great night.




For my first post, I wanted to introduce myself. My name is Kerri Shaw and I am 26 years old. I have an amazing husband, James, and two sweet boys. Gabe is going to be 5 soon and Joseph is 15 months. I have a little farm in my back yard with a small garden, 2 cats, a dog, and 8 chickens. I’m a teacher at a small private Christian school and I teach 2nd grade. We attend a small church where I help out in the children’s class as well as sing on the music team. I have also recently started distributing for Young Living Essential Oils. I love that company! There’s a lot going on in our lives right now but I can say God has blessed us beyond measure. I started this blog to share our life experiences in hopes that I can share advice, wisdom, or encouragement to those who read and comment. More to come soon!