Monday, March 31, 2014

What I Wish I Could Tell My Teenage Self about...Beauty...

Hey K2 Kanakuk Friends,
All I can type right now is that fact that One Direction's song is looping in my head over and over...

     "You don't know you're beautiful..."

Oh, One Direction.

Moving on. I have so loved these series of "What I Wish I Could Tell My Teenage Self about..." LOVED THEM. They have been reflective, creative and good for my heart and soul. To the 10 people reading...bless your hearts.

Here are all the past posts of this little series...Family, Boys, and Moms...

Beauty is defined by Webster as "the quality of being physically attractive." To me, for some reason, that definition is so sad. As I am navigating the whole mommy of 3 precious little girls this idea of beauty pops up in my head a lot. I think of it when I tell them how beautiful they are. I think of it when they see me putting on makeup (not a usual occurrence...however, this mom is thankful for just makes a gal feel put's the southern in me. we belles need our mascara.). I think of it so often...what will their definition of beauty be? What is your definition my hip and cool teenage gals?

I want to simply give my two cents...that's about what it is here are the top 5 things I wish I could have told my teenage self about BEAUTY.

1. Let your beauty be defined by who you are. Okay, nothing I am typing is rocket science or even a new theory of sorts. Just thoughts. Sweet girls, the world from the time you popped from your momma to each day of your life is yelling at you that beauty is defined in makeup, sizes and numbers, clothes, and how great of natural curls you can do. The world is screaming beauty messages every day at your spirit and soul, heart and body. You are told to be beautiful you need to straighten this, tuck that, and never wear these. You are told to be beautiful you need to have no pores seen, no hair out of place and no thighs touching. You are told a lot of things...maybe I should switch "things" to LIES. You are told lies. What if you changed the message of beauty...You know you can do big things like that. You can be a woman defined by your own definition of beauty. You can be defined by the acts of beauty you live in your life. The act of helping the broken in your hallways. The act of stopping the bully from teasing the downtrodden anymore. The act of sitting with the loner a few tables away. Let your beauty be found in your your daily choices. Don't let beauty be something so simple as outward. It's so much more.

2. Beauty fades. This beauty I speak type of fading is the outward. Oh precious I know you think your legs are too short and your cheeks to chubby (Girl, I'm always storing for winter in my cheeks! Squirrel cheeks could be my nickname), your lips too thin and your *ahems* too small. Oh to see in the future to when we are 40, 53 or you think any of that will matter. Answer: NO. You will be 64 years old and sitting in a rocking chair looking through photo boxes or your kids, grand-kids and great gran-kids. You won't care about lines around your eyes...those lines tell stories of tears as you welcomed your 1st grandbaby. You won't care about your thighs...those thighs tell memories of marathons run with your best friend. You won't care about your *ahems*...those *ahems* tell many countless nights nursing your first baby through it's first fever. Your outward beauty fades...absolute truth.

3. Beauty can be found in everyone. If I wasn't a mom and a somewhat totally morbid thinker I am pretty sure I would pick up every hitch-hiker I ever passed. I just always always want to...but then the 8 little dangly feet and my morbid "what-if-they-kill-me" mind kicks in and so I drive by praying someone with a mission to pick up hitch-hikers who is a male and knows moves like Jagger to protect himself if a gun in drawn would pick them up and share Jesus...I'm serious, I pray that. A lot. Anyways, I say that to simply say I want to see beauty in everyone...the person who doesn't look like me or my friends. The darker and lighter. The smarter. The sad and broken. The outward and upfront. The special needs. The homeless. The all put together. I want to see beauty there. The sunrise. The loss of love. The second chances. The deer in my road. The cries of my baby (4 am...that is a tough beauty call!). Beauty was made for our enjoyment. Beauty in Jesus' definition is in everything.

4. Physical beauty isn't bad, but be careful. I wanted to make sure this was a point. Beauty's not bad. New clothes, great. A new set of makeup brushes, great. New TOM Wedges that you wear everyday even with yoga pants, great. (Not that I do that or anything.). Beauty, in the most physical terms, isn't bad. It's not bad to tell your sister she looks beautiful in her new easter clothes. It's not bad if your hair looks especially beautiful one day. It's when that beauty, the world's beauty definition, is what you seek. When that beauty becomes your idol. When that beauty definition limits you and enraptures your life and heart. Walk this line carefully...always remembering true and unwavering beauty has nothing to do with the outward.

5. You are beautiful. Okay, I know your mom tells you this. I know that school counselors say this when you get called into her office because you got put in a locker by the girl bully again. But I can't not type it. I want to be a voice (or a read) that tells you once again, you are beautiful my sweet girl. You were made with purpose. Your hair is wavy because Jesus knit you together perfectly. Your outward beauty is perfect to your Heavenly Father. Your inward beauty makes Him lavish His love on you. You are His beauty!

Let's end this post with a perfect cliche..."beYOUtiful."

Be awesome & Love Jesus,

kanakuk ashley robbins
Come to a beautiful CAMP! Kanakuk!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Prom Post...

Hey K2 Kanakuk Friends,
Well I feel like prom is upon us...and by us I mean most of you. Oh my proms. My junior year I sort of was asked (sort of being very much pathetically sort of) by a friend. It was a miserable prom. Not sure he wanted to go but much less with me. Senior year had a great prom. Went with a great friend and had a great time. So why all the pressure? What if you don't get asked? Is it okay to go with a group of girls? My answer...don't know. it's okay. yes.

Oh sweet teenage life...I should do a post on what I wish I could tell my teenage self about PROM. Seems like it would only have 1-2 is not the end of the world if you a) don't go at all. b) do go but go with a bunch of friends. c) go and later when you get your pictures realize you look like a bad glamour shot photo.

Prom begins about now taking up magazine covers and soon for one night the restraraunts in our town will be covered with nervous laughter, glitter explosion and the lingering scent of hairspray. Prom is so fun. Well, it can be so fun. Even as I type I feel my brain a bit all over the place in what exactly my message is with this post...

1. I'm so sorry if you don't get asked. I know that sting. Trust me. I technically asked the guy I went with senior year. I mean I know that sting. Please hear me are not weird. You are beautiful. You are so valuable. You will be okay. I exhale even as I type thinking...when I was there these words didn't make me feel any better. So I guess I will just say...I'm so sorry. (*I also would say...but look I got married to a hottie mchotterson and have 4 beautiful littles...take that PROM!)

2. Please don't do anything stupid on prom b/c of what you have seen in TV, movies or read anywhere. Oh the dreaded thought of prom night in some guys' minds. Sweet girls, please know that Prom is not a memory you want to have about anything other than your dress, your selfies you will take with everyone and the song of the night (our was that one with "we're going to party like it's 1999...that was our year and our jam!). The memory of giving anything away of you...makes my heart beat pick up and makes me want to sign up to be a chaperone at all of y'alls dances. Please...just go to prom and go to a fun friend's house and play board games, drink Fresca (seriously it's so good), and eat pancakes that the mom makes at 2 am. Then go home and before you go to your room go kiss your dad on the cheek.

3. Have fun. I try and never "speak down" to your generation. It's not my heart. It doesn't work. So I'm aware that Prom is important. Don't put crazy expectations on your beau or friend with how he asks you...what happened to just face to face "you wanna go to prom with me?" Make sure you let your parents be involved. Basically Prom in many ways is a pre-runner for your wedding (not to the same guy...most likely) in your parents eyes. So let them take pictures. Take one of you and your daddy. Let your mom zip your dress. Let the moments be sweet. Don't be all over your date. Ew. Be classy with your dance moves. Don't pose with your elbow out and leaned over so much that you look like you are doing your ABC's instead of posing for a picture. Laugh at yourself. Dance silly. Don't let hands during a slow dance go anywhere but your back and hand, again, keep it classy.

There's my pointers and jumbled message...interpret what you will.

Be awesome & Love Jesus,

kanakuk ashley robbins
We have tons of fun dances! KANAKUK!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Honoring Friends...

{source: me with allergies. is there such thing as being addicted to eye drops?}
Hey K2 Kanakuk Friends,
Well today I felt a bit "stumped" for blogging...which actually happens a lot, hence the typical very random-no-point-at-all posts from this bloggy blog. But today as I was pondering I looked down to my planner (yes, I have a paper planner...with pages and lists and I actually use a pen) and saw this little invitation for a K2 gal's shower...Tanya's!

It got me thinking about friends...and then as I read the invitation the word HONOR jumped out at me. Do you guys think you honor your friends?

Ponder that for a moment...

Okay, moment over. Friends have always been a funny thing in my life. I can 100% be up front, on stage and give me a mic and I can hold the house down. BUT honestly a larger part of me could live on an island with just my family and be perfectly content. My husband (who totally challenges every grain of me on this) is constantly reminding me we were made for relationships on this I started to ask myself that question. How we do honor our friendships? Ya know the ones that are God appointed and the ones that would rally in a heartbeat if you needed anything. Those friendships. For me I pray I honor those friendships in 3 ways...

1. love my friend always.
2. love my friend...rejoice with her when she is great, when she does great things, when she accomplishes something or is excited about her new hair do. Cry with her when she hurts. Laugh with her till someone snorts. Truly honor her by truly wanting good things for her...celebrate her.
3. love my friend...but always hold our friendship towards the Maker of relationships. Allow Him to mold her, and me to simply admire the result. Allow Him to challenge and convict and me to simply speak truth when He needs me to. Allow Him to whisper into her soul and me to affirm His voice. Allow Him to be Him in my friend's lives.

So today...honor your friends well. Be a friend that rejoices with and for someone else...and be friends that always desire to be about Jesus' love.

Be awesome & Love Jesus,

kanakuk ashley robbins
Wanna come to Kamp? Check out the BEST.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

What I Wish I Could Tell My Teenage Self about...Moms...

{source: me. those little feets are my littles...minus the most recent addition}
Hey K2 Kanakuk Friends,
Well, sorry I've been such a slacker...the blog is finding itself on the very end of my to-do list as a certain little cutie newborn is hogging my arms. I don't mind too much.

Today's post might be super mooshy and totally relevant to life right now for me. I try hard to stay in the "mind of a teenage girl" for posts and will try with this post also as I type about what I wish I could tell my teenage self about my mom. Hence what I wish you could know NOW about your mom or any woman in your life that loves you and cares for you...

By the way (I totally typed BTW and went back and typed it out b/c it was like I was trying too hard to be cool! Made me laugh), you can read the other series by clicking below:

1. What I Wish I Could Tell My Teenage Self about...FAMILY. 
2. What I Wish I Could Tell My Teenage Self about...BOYS.

Okay so here is what I wish I could tell my teenage self about...MOMS.

1. Moms are so tired. Now I might be typing this from a very personal place but let me extend on this a bit. Although I am physically tired with this little newborn stage I still would say moms (of teenagers or tweens or young ones) are tired. As the hubs and I had our EOD (end of day) talk before we drift off to sleep-time I literally looked at him and said..."I'm going to be tired for the next 25 years." I think moms need more sleep but I also think this point is all too telling of their hearts. Do you know that I can hear any movement in our house...any little foot or cough. I hear the faintest of cry or the toddler version of "mommy" before it's even uttered. I would guess that even in teenage years it's the same...just a bigger version of those toddlers. I bet your mom hears every tear after you don't make the cheer team as you lay in bed. I bet she hears the door knob turns and knows you are home safe. She is up late worrying and yet trying not to worry and let you go. She lays in bed staring at the old popcorn ceiling wondering will you and she ever make it through these teenage years? She awakes at 5 am for a bathroom break and can't go back to bed because she is dreaming of the day she will give you away and the day you become a mom. She's tired...but trust me I can honestly's the best kind of tired.

2. Moms are dirty. Yep. I presently have spit up down my whole shoulder. I haven't shaved in 5 years since we started having kids. I do own a toothbrush, though every little in my house has put it in their mouth too to "bwush teef." Again, stay with me for moms of teenagers as they are a bit out of the spit up and haven't showered phase...I hope. That would be weird if your kid still spit up on you. Ew. Your mom's hands are covered with glue from the project in 5th grade with all the planets. Pinterest wasn't around yet...therefore it was actually hard to make. Your mom's hands are covered in spaghetti sauce, chicken guts, burgers for the team and chocolate chips to feed the neighborhood kids. Your mom's hands are so dirty from the snotty noses you had during allergy season as a toddler, throw up from the flu that would hit like an atom bomb every year in your house and lice bugs from the horrible sunday at church when you "shared" with the itchy head kid. Your mom's are dirty...with your life. They are in it. They are a part of you. They have daily picked you up and cleaned you off. Sometimes they want to pick you up when you should fall and fall instead of picking you up they crawl in whatever "dirt" you have gotten yourself into. Mom's meet you in dirt...they wish with all their heart you would never get dirty or hurt. They know they can't protect you from that so instead...they meet you in your dirt.

3. Moms are screw-ups. Preach. Yes. I cannot tell you how many nights I have walked in at midnight to my little 2 pigtails room and had to whisper in their ear..."Mommy is so sorry for being impatient today. I love you and please forgive mommy." There is no answer besides a little breath breathing so sweetly in and out with her thumb hanging out the side of her mouth. I have to do it...I couldn't sleep laying there and knowing I screwed up. I don't live in guilt (that's a whole nother blog post to mommies out there) but I am so very quick to say sorry. Sweet teenage girls...Your mom isn't perfect. She messes up. She is trying to figure out how to protect you, but not overprotect raise you but not too quick but not too slow where you are living at home when you are 27. She is gracious. Talk to her. Don't shut her out. If she hurts your feelings, share that...but here is a crazy idea...listen to her why's and thoughts. Your momma might surprise you. Forgive her and know that no one loves you like she does. one. (besides Jesus. obvi.)

4. Moms are people. When was the last time you (yes, you little teenage girl that types more words to a stupid iPhone screen than actually talks to someone) sat down with your mom after arriving home from school and said..."how was your day, mom?" MIND BLOWN. Go try it. Your mom is a person...breathing, with feelings, thoughts, hard days, celebrations. Get to know her. Know her little sayings that are so "your mom." Cook her favorite recipes and learn how she does it so you can pass that on. Your mom is this full picture of love, grace, unconditional everything, patience, and owe it to yourself to know her. Hold her hand when you are walking. Hug her at night. Run into her bed on Saturday morning to just laugh and then go get donuts in your pjs. See her. If you do this you will see Jesus...

5. Moms are Jesus to you every day. Oh, how many moments did my mom probably stand in our hallway so overwhelmed in raising a teenage daughter. My silence, my door slams, my rollercoaster of emotions, my attitude...oh Jesus please come back before we hit the teenage years in our home. But my mom showed me Jesus...she was steadfast in her love, she always scratched my back at night which said I love you in every way, and she always took care of me. That's Jesus. My mom gave me the foundation of Jesus in my life. That deserves a million bucks and a million thanks...the great thing about moms, though, is that a little hug or "i love you" is all it takes to make our hearts smile and rest in a job well done.

Go get your this together. See her. Promise me...

Be awesome and Love Jesus,

kanakuk ashley robbins

Monday, March 3, 2014

Work Hard...

Hey K2 Kanakuk Friends,
"Good planning and hard work lead to prosperity, but hasty shortcuts lead to poverty." ~ Proverbs 21:5

"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men." ~ Col. 3:23

I love the staff gals and kampers that role into K2's gates and they have a sense of work ethic. I see it so often in the triathlete gals that I get to "run" (very loose definition for my running ability) with each day. Oh, sweet girls, I wish I could impress a work ethic onto each one of you. Not a work ethic of just grades or a work ethic of being able to talk your way (aka passively manipulate) out of deadlines or the hard work. An actual work ethic that mows the yard every other Saturday for hours (yep, that was me!), sleeping in does not go until 2 pm on Saturdays, and getting out of things is not in your character.

Do you know how to work? And work hard and joyfully? My momma is a teacher and I cannot tell you the times she has parents bailing their kids out of a quiz or bad grade. She has students that literally manipulate anything to simply not have to work hard. It's unbelievable. I see it in the summer. I want this next generation to know what chores are (and not get $500 for doing them) that you have to do to get supper. To know what a job is before the age of 23. To know that working hard is good for your soul and your character. Work ethic stands out. Stand out my friends.

From what I have seen there is the rare gal who really get the rare young woman!

Be awesome & Love Jesus,

kanakuk ashley robbins