Posts tagged #Ordinary Life

A Texan Update

Alright y'all, The Sassy Salmon has been a little serious as of late, so without further adieu I bring you real life stories from moving across the country with 3 kids ages 4 and under, 1 labradoodle, and 3 ridiculous adult humans (myself included but my husband missing from that crazy equation). 

Moving halfway across the country is hard. I would like to give a shout out to my inlaws who drove the trek with me since Ben had to be in Atlanta for the first few (ahem 6) weeks. And snaps for my dad and Mitch (my brother's father in law) for driving down from Kentucky to conquer my Honey-Do List. Also, I'd like to revisit the part where my mother-in-law and I were locked in a van with twin 4 year olds and a baby that eats every 3-4 hours for two days in a row. To those who say mother-in-laws and daughter-in-laws CANNOT get along, I give you this. In addition, I don't want to brag about my awesome MIL... but she has quite literally attached me to a pump and milked me like a cow when I was determined to get some milk for my NICU babies while bedridden, unable to do so myself. ISH gets real in the Salmon family once you take them vows. So I guess a road trip across the country isn't that outlandish given our history. 

I digress. 

Before embarking on our long journey, I may or may not have given the road trip rules that nobody eats or drinks until we get to TEXAS. There would be no stopping, dawdling, tourist attractions, and all meals would be eaten while on the road. Mama had some serious mileage goals and gosh darn it we were going to make good time. For the most part, I'd say we all did well. There were a few hiccups like Jude refused to follow my road trip rules (#hungrybaby) and a man backed into one of the cars while we were at a gas station - but thanks to me screaming like a banshee he slowed down just enough to try to figure out why a random blonde woman was yelling & running at him that the impact was minimal and there wasn't any damage (other than the damage it did to my heart by triggering palpitations). So I guess no harm no foul.

All that to say, we did eventually make it to Texas and everyone still loves each other. 

Now that we're here, I'd like to give you an update on all we've seen because West Texas is definitely different from Raleigh, North Carolina... or all of North Carolina really.

The twins can't identify the American flag or the North Carolinian flag to save their lives, but gosh darn it they already know the Texan flag. IT IS EVERYWHERE. A few days in we visited a store that had half a dozen Texan flags flying outside and the girls asked about it & "Why are there so many?!" Ever since then they get CRAZY PUMPED about seeing the Texan flag. I'll be driving down the road and they'll start losing their minds, "MOMMY MOMMY!!! LOOK!! IT'S A TEXAN FLAG!" I don't get it - but somehow the indoctrination has already set in. 

We have also seen lots of cactus, windmill farms, the most GORGEOUS sunsets, plateaus that people refer to as mountains (um... no), and a person riding a horse down the middle of the street. Which that isn't so odd except the street is in MY NEIGHBORHOOD. Like a normal residential area. With houses. And fences. And small backyards. So I'm not quite sure where the horse was going, but I definitely had to stop and InstaStory that junk. I've also seen two kids dressed in rodeo attire practicing their lasso skills in the mall parking lot. Because you know, what better place to lasso each other than right outside of Dillards. #westtexas 

"MOM!!!! Don't talk about my thighs on the interwebs! How embarrassing?!"

"MOM!!!! Don't talk about my thighs on the interwebs! How embarrassing?!"

Friday Night Lights is a real thing around here and Jude gets asked at least once a day if he's going to be a football player when he grows up. He usually gives the friendly strangers a blank stare until they start grabbing his "football" thighs. At that point he smiles because... well... he's been conditioned by my constant gnawing of his thighs. THEY ARE JUST THAT DELICIOUSLY CHUBBY. 

In other news, the twins started pre-school midyear so they're having a blast catching up with the kids in their class. They learned about the letters M & N their first few weeks and every day when I pick them up I ask them if they learned any new words that start with those letters. Noel without missing a beat always replies with a few correct words and then ends with "M is for ICE CREAM. Noooooo, that's silly. But speaking of ice cream, can we go get some?" And usually we head to our Chick-fil-A for a sweet treat and kisses from Daddy. 

But doesn't he look so handsome? 

But doesn't he look so handsome? 

Speaking of sweet treats, I may or may not have walked in on a random man getting dressed when I went to drop off #TheFabulousMrHanks for his grooming appointment. Nothing says, "Hi I'm new here" like walking into a stranger's home thinking it's your groomer's. And because I was shocked, I immediately yelled SORRY and just slammed the door... ACCIDENTALLY LOCKING MR. HANKS IN THE HALF DRESSED STRANGER'S HOUSE. As I ran to my car still unaware that I didn't have my dog, the kind and understanding gentleman let Hanks out while simultaneously throwing a shirt on. Not making eye contact and stammering back to my minivan, I tried to apologize and explain that I was looking for my groomer who gave me his address. "Oh, no worries!" he said nonchalantly like I had not just seen him in his knickers, "The grooming business is out back. Folks mistake my house for it all the time." Oh OKAY GREAT, yes now I feel 1000 times better about this whole situation. 

Y'all, when I said the good folks of West Texas were the kindest I wasn't lying. 

All joking aside, we are loving Texas and getting to know the sweet people of Abilene. We've found a great little church and are slowly getting invested in the community. The people here are incredibly hospitable and we have been so blown away by the gracious welcome. Uprooting was and still is hard sometimes, but we are so thankful for this adventure and we're more than excited to be in Abilene. 

Here's to many more Texan adventures (but hopefully no more walking in on half-dressed strangers)!

Much love,

 

 

Donald Miller, Words, & My 30th

Fun fact, I don't know if you know this about me... but I love words. In a conversation, words matter to me. How they're said, which ones were chosen, etc. Bless Ben's heart, he's a verbal processor and I'm a word fanatic so you can only imagine how some of our disagreements go. Y'all pray for him. It's not his fault I'm crazy. 

All that to say, words carry a lot of meaning. 

A few months ago I was reading Donald Miller's latest book Scary Close. Now, if you know me you know I'm a huge Don Miller fan. HUGE. I've been reading his work for over a decade now and I've loved being able to read his story and simply adore how he writes so candidly about his successes, failures, relationships, spiritual health, etc. He is always a breath a fresh air and somehow, through his books, I feel like we're pals. I truly feel like I know him... REALLY WELL. Like best buds. Like let's roll out in our saturday sweats and grab some coffee and swap stories well.  Sadly the feeling isn't reciprocated and we aren't family friends, but maybe one day... Alas I get off track. 

Anyways, in Scary Close my bff Don was sharing about a low moment in his life when he felt like he was in a cycle of ruining every romantic relationship he started. He shared how after a broken engagement he started to believe that he was just horrible at relationships and that's just who he was. Don, the guy who was great with written words but bad with people.  It was during this season when his friend and mentor Bob Goff (another person I'd love to be bff with) spoke words of truth to him. He simply said and kept saying, "Don, you're good at relationships." And every time Don saw or chatted with Bob, he'd hear those words of affirmation over and over and over again. Now, I make it sounds cheesy... because I'm not Donald Miller. But he goes on to say how Bob's words were powerful to him. Those words of affirmation changed him by helping him see that he had the capacity to live a better story when it comes to relationships. And of course (spoiler alert), any Miller fan knows that He is now married, living an authentic story with a small community of friends and family now. 

Here's my point: True words carry power. 

The power to heal. The power to change. The power to inspire. The power to shape and mold. The power to encourage. The power to connect. The power to restore. The power to reveal. There's a reason the book of James deals so much with the tongue. It's not our physical tongue that gets us into trouble, but rather our words and the meaning they carry. They have the ability to give KILL or give LIFE (prov. 18:21).

Life. What a gift. 

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Yesterday, I turned 30. WHAT?! I know... shocking. I already can feel my metabolism slowing down and everything is sagging a bit more. But yesterday, in spite of my newfound sag, I was given one of the greatest gifts I've ever received. 

Words. Life giving words from friends and family members. 

I woke up yesterday morning to Ben surprising me with a trip to go zip lining. Y'all. He nailed it. There's nothing I'd rather do than fly through the trees to swing in my 30th. And that would've been a gift enough, but on the car ride there he had me open the glove compartment and inside was a book. 

A book full of words. 

From friends and family and many of you. 

Life giving words full of encouragement. Words affirming character traits you saw in me. Words capturing memories. Words that were healing and encouraging. Words that pushed me to love and see Jesus better. Words that reminded me of what God has done and is doing. 

Pages and pages of words that I cannot for the life of me wrap my head around yet, but I wanted to take a moment and say thank you to those of you who wrote letters, Facebook messages, emails, texts and took a moment out of your day to give me the gift of words on my birthday. What a kind and thoughtful blessing you gave.  From the bottom of my heart, thank you. 

Because of you, I was reminded of how powerful words can be and encouraged to practice the discipline of using my words for good more often. And I hope this post does the same for you. Take a moment today and jot out an encouraging text/email, or better yet a hand written letter. Tell a friend how much you appreciate them. Affirm a good character trait in a co-worker. Speak life into your children.

Give the gift of life today, packaged in words. 

 Because let me just tell you, after reading all those words yesterday... I am changed. 

Much love,




Sunday's My Monday.

Yall there are a multitude of reasons why I could be voted America's worst pastor's wife. Seriously. I'm not really sure how it happened... but last night as I laid in bed I was like... wow Brit... just wow. But instead of listing out all my many failures here and then putting my husband's job in jeopardy... I figured I'd just stick to yesterday morning (i'm not even going to touch yesterday evening... the part about me almost running out of gas... not having my wallet... trying to buy 78 cents worth of gas at a station... and leaving with $5 worth of gas... I'm just not going to go there. I can't do it quite yet.... So we'll stick to yesterday morning... ahem.). 

Ah Yesterday. I'm not really sure what went wrong or why? But all I know is that as I was running around church like a chicken with my head cut off, I had to laugh at myself and pause and think "Well holy crap. I'm a staff wife now.... I've gotta get my junk together. oh my." And let's all be honest... my initial thought might not have had the word crap in it... which might be another reason on the list against me. true story.

Well first off, baby girls and I went to the 11 o'clock service today instead of our usual 4pm. Which was awesome... except for the fact that I didn't get there til at least 11:15... And then once I got the girls checked in to Kids Life, it took me a good 20 minutes to get out of there because God bless our volunteers, they are just so great and fun to be around that I almost missed the ENTIRE service.  But I did eventually pry myself away from the fun. But something horrible happened as we were running around making our way into the service, I got a whiff of my own breath... which smelled like SALSA. 

That's right people. Salsa breath right here... because I ate chips and salsa for breakfast. Don't judge me. Sunday is my Monday. It's my The Weekend IS OVER & Daddy's Back At Work All Day... day. So sometimes it goes smoother than others... but yesterday the girls weren't napping, I was eating chips and salsa for breakfast, and the girls went through a whole closet full of clothes before church... so you do the math.  

So here I am running around the campus, salsa dragon breath, and I also realized that I'm getting a little sweaty while running around. That's odd... I'm a little young for hot flashes... So I chalked it up to running around like a headless chicken. And then it hit me... I have salsa breath AND I forgot deodorant. 

Not OK.  

Really... not cool. 

And as I was sitting there in church (once I finally made it in there at 11:30 plus a few minutes), I was thinking to myself, HOW?!! How did this happen? When did I become a mom? When did I become the girl who is ALWAYS late to everything? Who drives a minivan and rarely showers and uses dry shampoo like her life depends on it?

And when did I realize that this crazy life... full of ministry and babies and joy and chaos and snot and diapers and highs and lows and lots and lots of laughter... well this crazy life we live... I love it.

I never would have thought that I would be ok with being 30 minutes late  to church... but I am. Because that's what this season requires of me on some days. And I never would have thought that I would enjoy being a "pastor's wife," but I do. And I never would have thought that I'd love being a wife and mom... but it's one of the best things that has EVER happened to me. And the truth is, I might not be the best at any of those things (well except the late thing... I'm really awesome at being late), but I'm thankful that God has put me in these seasons because I'm being stretched and grown like I've never been before. So I'm thankful for this season, and I'm thankful that a lot of these roles do NOT come naturally to me. And I'm thankful that I have to rely on God's grace for survival... because let's all be honest here... no one likes a know it all... and I'd totally be one if I thought I had it all together. So I'm thankful that despite my inability to make it to church showered, wearing deodorant, with minty fresh breath, and on time... God still is allowing our family to be in ministry. What a blessing it is. 

Yall, I hope you are surviving your Mondays as well. :) Much love,

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