Accomplishing Much in the Desert: My Journey with Depression

Overcoming Depression | Beneath the Cherry Tree | Choosing Joy | Finding Happiness Again | Finding Hope

Accomplishing Much in the Desert: My Journey with Depression

Depression is more like an ongoing enemy, but somewhere within myself, I want to call it an old friend. Not because it’s been good to me – no. But because it has always seemed to be more readily by my side than almost anything else for most of my life.

I remember the first time I felt its grip. I was twelve. I started taking birth control at a very young age to curve some health issues I was having, and the benefits of it made me always second guess the depression that walked in hand-in-hand with it. That medication was my companion for six long years. Six years that I wrote off feeling as though I had no hope and no joy and no substance to my soul because I thought it was just teenage angst.

I remember spending so many of those nights in a pool of tears. I felt so completely consumed by a weight I felt in my chest and a blur of disillusionment about my life. I struggled to see my way out of this pit. I felt crazy. Unsure of how to cope and unsure of what would happen if I confessed to my weakness, I pressed on. I fought back feelings of hopelessness and exchanged them for substance abuse and busyness. I thought this was who I was and that I was doing all that could be done.

Continue reading

3 Reasons to Consider a Social Media Break

Blogging Tips | Social Media Break | Beneath the Cherry Tree | Find Your Passion | Free from Comparison

3 Reasons to Consider a Social Media Break

Well, sweet friends, here we are – already almost a week into 2017. It seems surreal! Want to know what else seems surreal? It’s been a month since I’ve published anything on this little space. I’ve missed it. I’ve missed the amazing community of blogging friends I’m building, I’ve missed an avenue to pour my heart into, and I’ve missed connecting with like-hearted souls who make this journey so vivid and bright.

I haven’t signed off of social media completely over this month. I’ve just been trying to take a step back and really think about what my intentions have been, where my heart is at, and what direction to go next. I had to take some time to really think about what my habits with social media and navigating the blogging world had come to and what the outcomes of them were. I really don’t believe these things are inherently bad at all – they are fantastic tools to grow and learn and connect! I am so thankful for them and so value them still.

But to be honest, I think I really needed to take a teeny tiny break. And this social media break has been really great for my heart for 3 main reasons (you might want to consider it too!):

Continue reading

3 Reasons You Lost Friends When You Got Married

 Marriage Tips | Marriage Advice | You Lost Friends When You Got Married | Young Marriage | Beneath the Cherry Tree

3 Reasons You Lost Friends When You Got Married

I’d be lying if I said that I haven’t been tip-toeing around this post for quite some time. Partly because I know a topic like losing friends can be almost like salt in the wound for some, and also partly because I’ve been trying to navigate it myself. But the more that I have talked to friends who have gotten married young, the more that a roaring response comes rolling in that shouts, “Yes, I lost friends, too! And I thought I was the only one!” Sweet friend, let me tell you – you aren’t the only one who lost friends when you got married. I did too. And you know what? It’s okay.

Continue reading

Goals and Happenings: December Edition

Beneath the Cherry Tree | Goals and Happenings | December | Christmas | Blog UpdatesDecember Update

Be still my heart. Y’all – December. I LOVE December! And I could not be happier that it is here. (But somehow I’m already getting the post-Christmas, how-is-it-all-already-over blues in anticipation. Does that happen to anyone else? Haha!) I love the festive heart behind December – the gift buying, the making of all things beautiful, the quality time with people I love, and the opportunity to re-center my heart on the gospel.

December is my jam. 

Continue reading

5 Reasons to Not Be Afraid of Marrying Young

Marriage Tips | Christian Marriage | Afraid of Marrying Young | Beneath the Cherry Tree | Tips for Young Wives | Newlywed Advice

Marriage Tips | Christian Marriage | Afraid of Marrying Young | Beneath the Cherry Tree | Tips for Young Wives | Newlywed Advice“>

5 Reasons You Shouldn’t Be Afraid of Marrying Young

Starting Off Young

My husband and I were both 21-years-old when we got married. He pursued my friendship and heart for 5 years, we dated for 3 months, we were engaged for 6 months, and we have been so overjoyed with the gift that marriage has been to us since then. We went from the speed of molasses to a whirlwind in no time flat, and it was altogether perfect for us. I was afraid of marrying young, but I felt such a peace about it.

Our decision to get married was something that we both prayed about, talked hour and hours and hours about, fasted about, and sought godly counsel about. We found so much confirmation that we were following the right path, and felt such a peace in our hearts that this was the direction we were to take. And you know what? It’s been absolutely awesome!

My husband is my best friend, my greatest supporter, a strong foundation for our family, a pillar of character and integrity, a hard-working provider, a man with a heart after God, and a servant-hearted and compassionate soul. He is the bomb diggity, and I’m totally smitten with him!
Continue reading

Homemaking 101: For the Newlywed Wife

Homemaking Tips | Newlywed Wife | Young Wife | Beneath the Cherry Tree

Homemaking 101: What is homemaking and why does it matter?

What does the word “homemaking” mean to you?

What does “homemaking” mean to you? Does it conjure up an old and outdated outlook? Does it bring to mind the idea of a woman stuck cleaning all day? Does it sound possibly offensive because of our booming culture of feminine independence?

I’ve thought about the acts of homemaking a lot during different seasons of my life.

As a little girl, I would spend countless hours playing house in a little building we had in our backyard.  At the time, I didn’t really put a term or phrase to my games. I just knew I had an inward desire to draw pictures to hang on the walls, to make mud pies out of old aluminum pie tins, to keep cobwebs at bay and floors swept, and to invite my dog over to enjoy it all with me.

Later on, when I first got married, I felt overwhelmed by my new job as a wife. Homemaking wasn’t really how I would have described what I was trying to accomplish. After all, I wasn’t a stay-at-home wife or mom and we certainly weren’t eating baked from scratch treats every day.

But whether or not I described my responsibilities as homemaking, I found myself totally overwhelmed at my lack of ability to suddenly be a hybrid of Betty Crocker, Martha Stewart, and the Proverbs 31 woman. My dinners weren’t always homemade, I didn’t sew my own curtains (or even have any hung for that matter!), and I definitely wasn’t weaving scarlet linens by candlelight.

Continue reading

Goals and Happenings: November Edition

Goals and Happenings: November Edition // www.beneaththecherytree.com

Goals and Happenings

Where in the WORLD did October go? I feel like this month went a million miles an hour! Which.. I may or may not be secretly happy about. Halloween is not my favorite holiday by a long shot. But Thanksgiving and Christmas definitely are, and each day is another day closer. Between the food, the decorations, the festivities, the parties, the shopping and the total merriment of November and December – I’m beyond a fan and can’t wait!

I am super excited about the month ahead. October was a great month! I launched Beneath the Cherry Tree on October 1st and have been so encouraged by the support, engagement and community it has brought into my life. My little corner of the internet was viewed over 1,200 times this month which I couldn’t believe! Thank you so much for letting me into your day each time you choose to click over to BCT. This is a space that I can’t wait to continue to grow with the purpose of bringing encouragement and hope.

As I began to work through this blogging journey this past month, I began to realize what I’m passionate about and pray for direction regarding what BCT is about and who it is for. I’ve realized that I am so passionate about encouraging new and young wives to flourish! I am so excited to announce that Beneath the Cherry Tree is going to focus on encouraging young wives to  find passionate courage in their faith, thriving strength in their marriage, and simplified joy in their homes!

I will definitely be posting a more in-depth update about this within the next couple of days, so be on the lookout. But for now, here’s a look at what is up ahead for November!

Continue reading

When Life is a Little Lackluster

 Overcoming Disappointment | Finding Joy | Encouragement | Hope | When Life is a Little Lackluster

When Life is a Little Lackluster

I was thinking the other day about the moment this picture was taken – Tyler and I set out on a day trip adventure to go explore the French Quarter of New Orleans and I had been looking forward to it for so long. It was such a life-changing vacation for me! I have always loved the idea of New Orleans and this day was even part of our 101 goals. When we arrived, it was definitely different from we expected. The drive was long, there was construction, the people were hectic and we weren’t really sure what to do once we got there. It was just..different. That day taught me so much about how expectations can really ruin an experience, but more about how to find the joy in less than expected circumstances.

Overcoming Disappointment | Finding Joy | Encouragement | Hope | When Life is a Little Lackluster

Despite us not knowing where to go or what to see, I heard about Cafe Du Monde and we headed there straight away. The directions on my phone were confusing, the smell of vomit along Bourbon street was perplexing, and trash littered the streets. But we eventually found it in all of its bustling and busy glory! We quickly found a seat and were greeted with beignets and the most delicious coffee. I looked out from our seat at the historically beautiful streets before us as live jazz music started trickling into our space.

It was the simplest of moments. It was one of the most cherished of memories with my sweet husband. And I realized something so profound in that moment – what a fantastically abrasive picture of life.

Continue reading

The Secret to Living Beyond What If

Overcoming Anxiety | Anxiety Relief | How to Gain Confidence | Overcome Fear

The Secret to Living Beyond What If

“I can’t do that. I have bad balance because my mom does.” I stated, so matter-of-fact at the invitation to try on my new playground friend’s Rollerblades.

“What does that mean?” They asked, tilting their head and staring blankly at me.

“I just have bad balance. You know how sometimes your mom has brown hair, so you do? I think it is like that.” I replied as they walked away to play with someone else. I stood there confused. Where did that come from? I couldn’t remember if someone had told me that or if it was my own idea. But I thought it must be true, because why would I think that it if wasn’t?

I remember the day those words first came out of my mouth so clearly. I think I felt, in that moment, the shift in my heart as seeds were planted. Those lies twisted from the truth and the roots started off so very shallow. But over time – over years and years of believing them to be true and claiming their identity over my life, those roots grew so deeply. You see, I’ve been dreading this year for my whole entire life. I’ve been living in fear of my 23rd birthday for as long as I can remember.

Continue reading

Create Your Own Fitness Plan

Workouts for Women | Health | Fitness |Workouts for BeginnersUp until about two years ago I really had never put much thought or effort into physical activity. My health journey so far had been more focused on developing a healthy diet and I secretly hoped that this would be enough – because I was not at all excited to get up and get moving!

If you’ve read about my health and weight loss journey, then you know that sports and working out had never been my thing and I always felt self-conscious or defeated if I tried. My friends would talk about running a mile like it was a walk in the breeze or I would hear people talk about going to the gym as if it was as easy as a quick trip to the grocery store. I just thought I wasn’t athletic, and that was okay. I assumed I was just built differently. And I always felt tired – the idea of running on a treadmill when I hardly felt I had the energy to get through work did not sound like my kind of fun.

But then a very sweet and encouraging friend of mine offered to let me tag along to the gym with her one day. And in an effort to just want to hang out, I agreed. Little did I know what I was signing up for! By the end of that workout, my whole body was sore. She taught me so much that day about different workouts for each muscle group, form, and her strategies for challenging herself. She talked a ton about how fun it was for her and her husband to go together and the benefits they were seeing from working out as it overflowed into the rest of their day. Most of all – I instantly realized how amazing I felt right when I left. And most unexpectedly, I wanted to go back.

Continue reading