Advent

Before you start reading, I challenge you to think about these three words and how they apply to your daily life. Do you view them as positive or negative? Do you reflect on their impact?
Rejection: The dismissing or refusing of a proposal, idea, etc.
Patience: The capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset.”
Advent: The arrival of a notable person, thing, or event.

To be completely honest, I have not dealt with too much rejection in my life. I had quite a few friends growing up & very few times have I been told no. Whether it be leadership positions, prom queen, college acceptance, getting a bid from my sorority of choice, job opportunities and even asking my parents for things (youngest child perks)… I wasn’t told no often. So with that, when I think about my most significant rejections, I think about some of the lowest points in my life. I’ll tell you about three, and how they have led to some of my most happy times.

I ran to be a Texas FFA State Officer back in my day. I was an area officer and had always admired the state officers. I wanted nothing more than to become one myself. A lengthy application, various interviews and a speech were all required to run. I completed everything and felt extremely confident that I would be the next state officer from our area. Long story short, to my surprise, I wasn’t selected. I was crushed. This was the first time I had ever “lost.” I was 17 and didn’t quite grasp God’s Divine plan. Eventually I did. Certain state officers take the first year of college off and if they don’t a large responsibility lies within them. This rejection allowed me to go off to college on time, with no commitments. I was able to begin a new chapter and also join Delta Zeta. My college career and my life now would certainly not be what it is without DZ. The next time your plan doesn’t work out, look at the rejection as God’s protection.

I used to long to be loved and by all of the wrong people. I would cling to unhealthy relationships and seek my value from others. All of the relationships that I thought would last, eventually left me in heart break. I would question God and his reasons, stop eating for weeks and make myself sick. If only I could go back & tell myself that J was on his way! I am thankful for what each heart break taught me and I am thankful for those who did not see my value. Now, I get to marry the greatest man on this planet! Someone who respects me, knows my worth and cherishes my love. Someone who understands me, loves me unconditionally and makes me into the best possible me. The next time someone wants to walk away from you, or better yet, not commit at all, do not beg them to stay. Let them leave or you build the strength to walk away. There are far better things ahead!

When we moved to Nashville I took a temporary job. Coming from a recruiter background that scared the crap out of me.. But I stayed positive and looked at it as my gateway to get to Nashville. That’s exactly what the position did. It got me here, I made some money and got good experience under my belt. Another long story (kind of) short, I was eventually told I was going to stay permanently. My hopes were up. Then things played out and apparently God had something better in store. I was initially extremely angry. I worked really hard and I thought that I had proven myself. After some time I came-to and realized it wasn’t meant to be. This was the start of a whirlwind. Talk of new positions becoming available, pay cuts, another temporary position, etc. etc. So I started looking elsewhere, truly searching for what I want to do long term. I interviewed at a few duds that just weren’t going to work out. If anything, they were great interview practice! I then remembered that when we first talked about moving here, I discovered that a very familiar company had their corporate office here. Lightbulbs went off!  I knew I wanted to end up there. It is all of my passions combined into one mega bundle of a dream. So, naturally, I got on LinkedIn and creeped. I found people that worked there and sent a few messages. A couple of days went by and I got a response! A phone screen, two phone interviews, and a lengthy in-person interview later… I got the offer!! My only dilemma, I was finally getting considered for a permanent position at my initial job that I spoke of. What are the freaking odds?! This felt like when a kid doesn’t want a particular toy until another little kid has it. I had two potential opportunities on the table. One I had a definite offer from, the other I hadn’t heard back from yet. So I woke up one morning and asked God to make my path clear. Even though I knew where my heart was, I didn’t want to make the wrong decision. That same day I received an email saying the permanent position was offered to another candidate. The old me would have been bothered by this rejection. But today, today I am thankful for the evidence of God’s work in my life. That, “we decided to go with another candidate,” was one of the best things to ever happen. My path was paved oh so clear. I needed all of the rejection to kick me into gear. Don’t wait until tomorrow to chase your dreams. Find out what you want to do, create a plan of action and make it happen! Don’t forget to stay faithful in God’s timing through the entire process. (Find out next week where I’m takin’ my talents!)

In all three examples that I gave, God’s timing was impeccable. You see, our God is an intentional God. He makes no mistakes or coincidences. We must learn to view rejections as God’s protection, remain patient leading up to seasons of advent and trust that He will come through. Stay in constant communication with The King and allow him to direct your path.

If you are waiting for your next job opportunity… His name is King Jesus.
If you are longing for your prince charming… His name is King Jesus.
If you are trying to figure out how you’re going to pay rent… His name is King Jesus.
If you are calculating how to pass your class… His name is King Jesus.
If you are searching for answers… His name is King Jesus.

We all fall short sometimes.
Remember that even when we are faithless, He remains faithful.

Be patient my friends. He is coming.

 

With love from Tennessee,
Sky

 

 

The Engagement

How we Moved our Life Across the Country

It all started with a simple text. “Lets move to Nashville,” J said. Without hesitation I (jokingly) responded with, “I’m down.” The rest is history.

Although J is from Chattanooga, we had been to Nashville once together prior to making the decision to move. I think we were here less than 24 hours during the visit. We were going to the Tennessee/Florida game in Knoxville, and made the spontaneous decision (we’re good at those) to leave a night early so that we could explore Nashville. We hit Broadway, took photos by popular murals and did a few other touristy things. We talked about how great the city was and never really thought about it again. Until a few months later that is.

It had to have been some time in May or June when everything started to come together. At the time, I was working for a company that I loved with the most amazing coworkers anyone could ask for. We lived in a cute one bedroom apartment that was in walking distance from the best church we had ever attended. My family was as close as ever and finally at peace after the passing of my pawpaw. My friends and I were finally getting to spend some time together now that I was back from college. Logically, pack up everything & leave, right?!

Since I went to the same school K-12 and went to college only an hour and a half away from my hometown, I think I have always deep down had an itch to leave north Texas. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely adore Fort Worth and all of the people that make it what it is. But I truly believe J gave me the push that I have always needed to spread my wings.

Our decision to move wasn’t a new years resolution or anything like that, it started as a joke. The more we got to thinking about it the more realistic it started to become.  J started job searching, we spent hours on Zillow looking for a home and I started to do some research about living in Tennessee. It turns out, Nashville is a HAPPENING place. Approximately 100 people move to Nashville everyday! The more real it became the worse my anxiety got. How could I leave everything I have EVER known?! My family, my friends, the roads I know like the back of my hand, my network of people, Whataburger… I’ll tell you how you can achieve this just like anything else: faith and hard work.

If you have ever considered packing up all of your things and moving somewhere new, DO IT. You can end up with a beautiful new skyline like this!

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Some things that I could advise:

  1. Stay positive. I freaked out over nothing, picked fights with J for no reason, avoided putting in my two weeks at work, I pouted and threw my fits, and ultimately took myself on an emotional roller coaster. Change is scary, but if you stay positive and have faith in what’s to come then you are setting yourself up for success.
  2. Start saving ASAP. I was making hardly nothing at the time we decided to move. I am TERRIBLE at saving money and pretty much had nothing set aside. If I did it, anyone can. But I can tell you one thing, it would have made it a lot easier if I would have started saving farther in advance. Moving is expensive! Some factors to consider: paying out your current lease (or any other contracts that cannot be transferred like cable), application fees for your potential new home, Uhaul truck or trailer, boxes, gas, hotels if the haul is too long, deposit for your new home, deposit for your pets (pets are expensive), first months rent, start up fees for water/electric/internet/tv, any new home decor you’ll want and money to live off of for 2-3 weeks if you’re starting a new job. Create a budget (and then add some extra). I added up the total cost & divided it out and ended up setting aside a couple hundred dollars each week!
  3. Make lists. Take everything day by day and avoid getting overwhelmed. Staying organized with lists will alleviate unnecessary stress. Prioritize tasks & just breathe! I’m a checklist person & I’m not ashamed of the sense of accomplishment that I get when I check the smallest task off my list.
  4. Ditch the old. If me, the hoarder or all hoarders, can force myself to chunk the sweaters that I have had since probably the 7th grade, then so can you. Use the move as a fresh start in all aspects. Get rid of as much as you can. Clothes, furniture, decor, etc. It will not only give you less to move, but will give you more room to buy new.
  5. Prepare for the unexpected. Like walking into your incomplete house after pulling an all nighter driving essentially your whole life across the country. Yep, that happened. I was outraged and heart broken and questioning if this was a sign from God that we shouldn’t have ever left Texas. I thought it was the absolute end of the world and the worst start to our new beginning, but it really only meant one night in a hotel. With such a large change, things are bound to go wrong. Be resilient when the going gets a little tough!
  6. Cherish your loved ones (even more than you already do). Moving will put things into perspective. I have never really had to miss my friends and family because they’ve always been “down the road.” I knew it would be hard and a huge change for me so I spent as much time as possible with everyone before I left. No matter how tired I was or how much I just wanted to stay in, I attended the extra dinner, pool day or family get together. I spent quality time with the ones I cared about (this will have you reconsidering how much time you spend on your phone). I vividly remember the realization that I should have been living like I was leaving all along.
  7. Prepare yourself for a new kind of loneliness. I’m an outgoing person. I like to consider myself friendly and happy too. I moved to Nashville with my boyfriend AND our dogs. I work with thousands of Nashville residents. How is being lonely possible? Ya know, I have yet to figure out how or why, I just know it’s real. Your best girl friend can’t fly in for brunch, your dad isn’t down the road when you’re having car troubles and even though you have a home filled with the best recipe for happiness, there is still something missing. I suppose comfort is the missing piece. If you can get past the initial discomfort and loneliness, there is a whole magnificent blank canvas waiting for you! Before we moved, I reached out to a college friend who had already moved her life across the country. She warned me about the loneliness and I am so glad that she did. If you can talk to someone who’s already done it, I guarantee they will have some great advice for you!
  8. Once you make it, stay busy. This is the time to make new friends, explore new things and to get out of your comfort zone! The same college friend who warned me about the loneliness also suggested that since I was moving with J, that I need to do at least one thing a week without him to create my own life here too. I highly recommended this if you move with someone. Spending time with your significant other is important, but so is your me-time. I recently joined The Junior League of Nashville. I get to meet amazing women and get involved with/give back to the community too. Church small groups, book clubs, Greek alumni chapters, even Facebook groups are ways to get in touch with new people! You didn’t move however far to start a new life just to sit at home on your couch. Get out a live and stay busy!
  9. Quit contemplating it & JUST GO! Stop the doubting. Stop the negativity. Stop overthinking! If you want to be adventurous, put your mind to it and make it happen. You are not a prisoner to your current circumstances. Your hometown will always be there, your wild & free days most likely won’t be.

 

Just to be extra, here are a few Pinterest quotes that helped me through the move!

“You’re always one decision away from a totally different life.” -Unknown 

“No amount of security is worth the suffering of a mediocre life chained to a routine that has killed your dreams.” -Maya Mendoza 

“Great people do things before they’re ready. They do things before they know they can do it.” -Amy Poehler 

“Sometimes what you’re most afraid of doing is the very thing that will set you free.”
-Unknown 

“Courage is being scared to death & saddling up anyway.”  -John Wayne 

 

I hope this gave someone the boost they needed!

 

With love from Tennessee,
Sky

 

© 2017 Skyla LePoris

10 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Me

It was a little difficult to come up with things that I thought people wouldn’t know about me. I want y’all to get to know the real me and all of the things that have shaped me into who I am today, so I came up with a small list to help you all get to know me better.

  1. The Texas FFA Association (specifically the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo) made that degree up there happen! My senior year of high school I received the highest amount of scholarship they awarded at the time. I was able to graduate college and achieve my biggest accomplishment to date,  debt free!
  2. I grew up living with my grandparents. They played a huge role in raising my sisters and I! I moved in with them when my parents first got a divorce. To be completely honest, I wasn’t too fond of the idea at first. I was in middle school so I was already going through an awkward time and it just seemed like the end of the world. Looking back I can’t imagine NOT living with them! Nanny and pawpaw became my best friends and biggest inspiration.
  3. I often get “you were super intimidating before I got to know you” or “I was shocked at how nice you actually are.” I’ve gotten it for a while now and if there is one comment I could make regarding it it’s, don’t judge a book by its cover! It’s a timeless quote to live by. Just because it (sometimes) appears that I have it all together, I have feelings too! Be kind!
  4. I’m a workaholic. I just recently discovered this about myself. I will run myself to the ground before I say no to staying late to help out a little at work. I have always had the outlook that a good work ethic is free so you might as well have one.
  5. I feel obligated to inform those who don’t know me well, that I have clubbed thumbs, or to most people “toe thumbs.” My claim to fame is that Megan Fox has them too.
  6. I have one tattoo! Just your basic white girl anchor, but to me it has a lot of meaning. It’s so special that it’s going to have its own post soon!
  7. Speaking of referring to myself as a white girl, I often get asked what ethnicity that I am (lol). In today’s world I find it a little strange but no offense is taken here! For the curious cats, I have deemed myself as Frenchican (French and Mexican). I’m only a quarter Mexican but it’s enough to give me olive skin and the guilt of not being fluent in Spanish like the rest of my family.
  8. My dream job would be to own my own animal rescue. I send J at least one adoptable pet a day… I just want all of them!!!! This is without a doubt one of my biggest life goals.
  9. I could care less about TV. Back in the day I was super into Laguna Beach, The Hills and Gossip Girl, but the older I’ve gotten the more valuable I find my time. I would rather be doing something outdoors or with the dogs.
  10. I’m allergic to the cold. It is an actual condition that two different doctors have diagnosed me with y’all!!! It’s technically called cold urticaria but regardless of what it’s called it’s TERRIBLE. I have been breaking out in hives whenever I get cold for years now. Back in 2012 ABC News reported that one in every 100,000 people were effected by it. Not sure how I got so lucky!!!

I hope y’all enjoy learning about all of my quirks as we begin this journey together. Next post I’m bringing y’all up to speed on how on earth we ended up in Nashville.

Make the best of this beautiful week!

With love from Tennessee,
Sky

 

© 2017 Skyla LePoris

Let’s Go Girls

Did y’all read that in Shania Twain’s voice? Because that’s totally what I was going for. I am way too excited to get this thing rolling!!!

I’ve been trying to talk myself into following through with a blog for a while now.. I over thought it, avoided it, prayed about it, and now here I am! I’ve been meaning to kick it into gear for weeks now too, but you know, life got in the way.

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For those that don’t know me, I’m Skyla, the brains behind the blog. That’s Tuf to the left and Bleu on the right, y’all will probably see a lot of them. I’m a loud and proud Texan who somehow managed to end up in Tennessee (another story for another day). I could talk about my upbringing for days but I will give y’all the short version for now.  I grew up in Haslet, a what used to be a small town outside of Fort Worth. Growing up, there were no red lights, there was one gas station that we occasionally rode the horses to and I didn’t have any neighbors. Most of my time was spent at the Ag barn back then. I showed livestock, got involved with the leadership aspects of FFA and quickly developed a passion for the agricultural industry. With that being said, my college days were spent at Fuzzy’s Taco, Legends Country Club and also Tarleton State University (GO TEXANS!!). With 1 degree change, 4 different houses, roughly 70 mental breakdowns and hundreds of memories, I was in and out in 4.5 years. I wound up a Delta Zeta and became a first generation college grad with an Agricultural Communications degree. How has it been almost an entire year since I graduated?! Besides the bills, life post grad is nothing short of magical. I’m currently working at Vanderbilt University Medical Center (clearly not using my degree in ag) as a program coordinator. I finally have some free time and that’s what brought Sky’s the Limit along! 

My goal is not to become some famous Pinterest-perfect blogger. I want to be real, raw and transparent. I’ve always wanted a blog, but I hesitated to open up about my life’s details. After some thought I realized that I have been blessed with one heck of a life and I’ve recently felt led to share my experiences. You can expect lots of life lessons, a dash of love, plenty of faith and all of the adventure in between! One of my all-time favorite quotes is, “aspire to inspire before you expire” and simply put, that’s what I want to do.

I am so excited to begin this journey with you all and I can’t wait to see where this goes. Feel free to comment or email me on any topics that you would like to see discussed in the future. Head over to my contact page to find out how to keep in touch!

 

With love from Tennessee,
Sky

 

© 2017 Skyla LePoris