It’s Been Eight Long Years!

8 years ago I got the phone call that will change my life forever! You were gone, your life was over and there was nothing 8 years I could do about it. I had absolutely no say so in the matter. I’ve asked myself a million times why couldn’t I help you? Regardless of what anyone says I will never understand why you had to go. I will never believe that you wanted to leave us. I understand now that the details are really none of my business. God has walked with me and reminded me everyday that he never makes mistakes. Some times bad things happen to good people and my job is to have faith and hope might I will see you again one day.

Your legacy will always live on in me. You taught me so much about life and left me with more courage than I ever thought possible. Even though your leaving was the hardest thing I’ve ever dealt with, the experience has helped me help other hurting people.

I never got to say goodbye, but one day just a few weeks before it was time for your momma to join you, I went to see her. I sat in a chair beside her bed and she said “Girl get over here in this bed with me.” So I did and we laid there for hours talking. I told her everything I wished I had had the chance to tell you before you left. It was a special day and I will never regret it.

Now you are together and I’m sure you are both tickled pink. I imagine yall fishing but not playing Monopoly bc that always caused a scene! I😄😄

I’ll never forget, I’ll just live with what you taught me. Until we meet again, Rest in peace soul sister! RIP Gina Carol Tipton.

38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,

39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

– Romans 8:38-39.May 17, 2021

The Year Was 2003

I came across this picture last week. I’ve been using it as a bookmark in the current novel I’m reading. The year was 2003. We were fresh out of High School, young wild and free. The man of my dreams had found his way back into my life and I was thrilled. This was before marriage, before kids, before careers, even before we lived together. We didn’t know too much about the things that would get on our nerves about each other. We didnt have car payments, house payments, or any other responsibilities. In those days I didnt think about tomorrow, I always tried to live for the day. Lord what I would do to have that mind set back!! Not to mention that body!! Regardless of what our dreams are made of, Gods plans for us are always perfect. #firstloves #youngins #wouldn’tchangeathing.

LaBranda 💛’s Tj Always and Forever!!

If You Feel Like You are In The Darkness..

I am the type of person that will be scrolling through Facebook or Instagram and see a picture or quote that speaks to my soul. Instead of sharing it right away, I’ll save it for nights light tonight when I want to write but I don’t know what to write about. So here we go, I’m sharing parts of my brain that lead to my soul. Happy Sunday!

Have you ever asked God why you were being put through something?

Just know that in all situations, God has control, lean on Him. Trust in God, for he will always be our Rock. Isaiah 26:4

Darkness affects everybody! There is nothing in the darkness that isn’t in the light. When we are standing snack dab in the middle of the darkness, you have to figure out not HOW to get out of it, but WHAT you will get out of it. The darkness is real people. I claim this time and time again.

Photo by Adam Kontor on Pexels.com

Even during your darkest days, streaks of light will break through the storm clouds – providing hope and comfort. My unfailing love shines upon you always. Look up to Me and see My Face shining down upon you. I never run out of compassions. They are new every morning. – Jesus Today by Sarah Young

Lord I praise you for your goodness and your faithfulness to all of your children. I even praise you for the blackness of disease and death, of desperation and discouragement, of pain and problems, of stress and suffering, because it makes the evidence of your glory more visible in our lives.

Worship will get you through the roughest times in your life, because it shifts your focus from the problem to the problem solver!

Whatever season you are in, God will guide you through. Just as a ship is controlled by a captain, so are you! Allow God to be your captain today. He will weather the storm with you.

My child, you worry too much. I’ve got this, remember? Love, God

I hope everyone has an amazing new week! I’m counting down the days until Spring Break! 5 days to go!!

LOVE, LABRANDA

To All The Teenagers in my Life….

The only thing I miss about 16 year old me is the body that I hated at the time. 38 year old me would like to sit down and have a little chat with 16 year old me. If that could happen these are the words I would say.

  1. Not everyone will like you. It’s okay. Those who matter don’t mind, and those who mind don’t matter.
  2. Dancing is like sweet medicine that satisfices the soul. Do it at weddings, and events, but remember the best times to do it is anywhere you want to, with the ones you love. I wish I would have danced more.
  3. Build your future, but don’t forget that each today has a meaning.
  4. Your heart is going to break. Next year you will fall in love for the first time. It’s going to hurt like heck. It will knock you down, but when you get up and brush yourself off, you will get up stronger and wiser, more resilient. Keep calm, eventually you end up with that first love and you have two beautiful children together.
  5. Make good friends, but don’t ever beg anyone to be your friend. In the end you will only need those special 3 anyway. Do your part to keep them, they will be well worth the work.
  6. Your value doesn’t change based on the kind of clothes you wear, what kind of house you live in, the kind of car you drive, or if you are single your entire High School career. Know your worth.
  7. Oh Lord, listen to your Momma!! She is always right!
  8. Be more than just a pretty face. Pretty is…well it’s honestly just not the most important thing, no matter what Instagram says.
  9. You will never be perfect. Accept that you are going to mess up from time to time, but always do your best.
  10. Do not compare yourself to others. It is a thief of time and joy.
  11. Be nice to yourself, your words matter.
  12. No matter where you are, or where you go, there is always more to learn, never stop growing.
  13. Nobody is better than you! You are not better than anyone else either. We are all just people that depend on grace. Accept it for yourself and then give it out to others.
  14. If it won’t matter in a month, then don’t worry about it today. Worry is of the devil. It only takes and never adds anything to your life.
  15. Beauty is everywhere. Find it. Choose it. Appreciative it. Dwell in it.
  16. Press on
  17. Spread kindness wherever you go.
  18. You have to learn how to love yourself before you can love anyone else.
  19. Take lots and lots of pictures. Don’t delete the goofy ones, one day they will be your favorites.
  20. Last but not least, you DO NOT need a significant other to be significant. Just live your life and focus on your friendships and finding things that fill your heart with fire.

Survival Recap!

It’s been so long. This life i’m living is passing me by like a run away train. Here is just a brief update…

  • I officially finished my first online class on my journey for my bachelor’s degree.
  • I can not, nor will I say that I passed Lit 101 with flying colors because that was not the case at all.
  • Although I can write circles around any random collage student, I did not find any joy in learning the biographies of 25 different poets and authors, as well as matching them with their writings.
  • I will start Music Appreciation tomorrow and I can only hope it is less involved as the previous class.
  • Since my last post, I have lost a very dear friend. He was an amazing man and he will forever be remembered as Big Mike.
  • It is with these days of sadness that are surrounding my loved ones he left behind, that I become even more convinced that I could be an Empath.
  • I wish I could take all the pain and suffering away from those I love.
  • I truly don’t understand how people that don’t have a relationship with Jesus can get through something like this.
  • On a lighter note Piper turned 1 last weekend.
  • There are only 10 more work days till Spring Break 2021!!!

Be Blessed!! Love, LaBranda

The Best Things in Life are not Things

Good evening to all of my faithful friends in WordPress land! I just wanted to pop on and give a little life update since it’s been an eternity since i’ve been on.

Baseball season is in full swing for Eli and Tj. Eli has been playing on his Junior High and High School baseball team. He has done some amazing things already this season. There was a nice write up about him in the paper. I am going to try and keep all the clippings and start him some sort of scrape book. I’d like to add to it until he graduates in the next three years. I’m oh so proud of all of his accomplishments thus far.

Eli turned 15 on Feb. 16th. It’s so crazy to think about that. I took him to get his driver’s permit and he is taking full advantage of it. Nobody told me how high your insurance went when you added a teenage driver to it!

In addition to attending his games, we have been helping with some area warm up tournaments at the rec park. Yesterday was a super long day that resulted in us not getting home till after midnight. We enjoy spending time with our Ball Park Tribe.

Piper is growing so much! I can’t believe that a week from today she will be a year old. She still isn’t walking but she sure is trying. Im not in any particular hurry to make her do so. lol!

This week is finals week for me. I will be wrapping up my first semester in my UWA online courses. I will be really busy the next few days as I have 2 tests and a paper to write by midnight on Thursday. Im so ready to get literature behind me. I enjoy the writing aspect of it, but now so much all the info ive had to cram into my brain in the last 8 weeks.

I will leave you with some cute updated pics of my pride and joy.

These are Truly Times that Tries Man’s Souls!

Last week I started taking an online Literature class. Yesterday I was assigned to read the pamphlet The First Crisis by Thomas Paine. I had to pick a quote that spoke to me and break it down and explain why it meant so much to me. These are the words that I let flow. God Bless America!

The first Crisis booklet unfolds with the famous quote “These are the times that try men’s souls”. The word “try” represents a “trial” on one’s soul. In other terms, Paine is saying the times that were being lived were the moments that tested men’s souls. Yet, he was very passionate about America’s fate, and he believed imagined that it would become the most powerful in the nation.  His dream was for his nation was to become a sanctuary for people seeking rest from unfair rulers.
How ironic that we would be asked to read this particular text the day of the new president’s inauguration. I have never been a political person. I’m a simple-minded girl from Alabama.  However, in the past few years, I’ve started paying much more attention to things going on around me. The year 2020 was a rough one for all of us. I had a baby the week before the Government shut down. My baby had to stay in the NICU for 22 days. I was the only one allowed in to see her, and I had to be very cautious. I could only go once a day and once I left I was not permitted to return. I battled a terrible case of postpartum depression, which was compressed tenfold because of the fear of a virus no one knew much about. It was so scary. I’ve sat back and watched as the land that I love has crumbled to pieces. I won’t go into my political views out of respect for others, but we all need to stop thinking so much about what’s going on today, and think more about what our children’s future will hold if things continue to unfold as they are. These are truly times that try American’s souls!

💛 LaBranda

MIA

Hey WordPress fam! I’ve been MIA for a bit. I had surgery last week so and have been kinda down. I’m finally feeling more like myself today. I’d just like to say thank you to everyone who contacted me and thought of me as I lost someone very special to me last week as well.

I may not be as active in the next few months. I started online school to get my Bachelor’s last week. Its and American Literature class so I know I’ll be doing alot of writing. But I’m sure I’ll pop in from time to time.

Tell me what’s been going on in your little corner of the world?

Today

This week was a tough one. We sat and watched in awe as another part of our nation began to crumble. I have many words on that subject to share, but I’ll save that for another post.

This week I went to the bed side of someone that has been a big part of my life for the last 26 years.

In March of 1995 my family moved to a little town called Cottonwood Alabama . A town so small all we had was a grocery store and a gas station. There is no need for red lights in this town but we do have one caution light.

The neighborhood we moved to was called Acorn Valley Circle. At the time there was only 3 other houses there. A few weeks after we moved in another house was brought in. I was so excited to meet my new neighbors.

That was when I met and incredible woman by the name of Mamie Tipton. Mrs. Mamie was the sweetest lady you could ever meet. From the moment I meet her she made me a part of her family.

If you have followed my blog for any length of time, you will remember some posts I have made throughout the years where I mention my late best friend Gina. Well Mrs. Mamie is Gina’s mom. And one of the people who helped mold me into the person I am today.

She taught me what it means to always look for the good in every person and situation. She helped dry my tears on many occasions and loved me through all the rough patches that teenage years bring about. She was there on my wedding day, and when I brought my baby boy home from the hospital.

In our quiet moments together a few weeks ago, I was able to tell her all the things I wish I’d had the opportunity to tell Gina before she passed.

I told her how much she meant to me, and how much I loved her. That I was sad for us that she is leaving behind but happy for her because she will get to be with her baby girl again. I apologized for all the nights we kept her awake with our silly obnoxious laughter. And for all the times we raided the fridge in the middle of the night. I remember one time we were up late and were starving of course, so we ate an entire block of cheese only to find out that she was going to make tacos for our lunch the next day. She wasnt too happy about that and sent our butts to the store to replace it. 😉

I thanked her for no matter how much time has passed since I last walked through her back door, that she always had a hug and a kiss on the cheek for me. I told her how thankful I was for her letting her home be my safe space no matter what life was throwing at me.

I think back to all the summers I spent sleeping on her livingroom floor and how the friendship I shared with her daughter couldn’t have been as amazing as it was without her there to keep us focused on the important things in life. Without her I would have laughed a little less and lacked alot of knowledge. She taught me the same values my own wonderful Mom did, but I was less stubborn at listening.

It takes a special kind of woman to deal with the combination of me and her daughter,  but with alot of love and patience she made it look easy.

Today she got her wings. Today she ran into the arms of Jesus.  Today she finally got to hold her baby girl in her arms again. Today she was completely healed. Today a little piece of my heart went to Heaven. I’m so sad for all of us she left behind, but so happy for the glory she is experiencing right now. She will be truly missed! R.I.P. Mamie Ruth Tipton.

❤ LaBranda

Hello 2021 Goodbye 2020

I almost did write this post. As we all know 2020 has been one for the birds. I’ve personally gone through some of the scariest moments of my life. The uncertainty of this time has added a lot of extra stress and anxiety to my life. But, in addition to chaos, 2020 brought smiles, giggles, slobber and a little girl that I didnt know I wanted.

Piper will be 10 months old next week. These last 10 months have been rough at moments yet amazing at most. I dont want this post to be filled with the dreadfulness that we have all come to know. If you need any of that look back at my older posts where I talk about my terrible post partum depression.

Usually my New Years posts are filled with reflections, but the only positive reflection I have is Piper ElizabethAnne Jones. And she is something to look forward to as well.

We dont know what 2021 will bring us. If nothing else this year has taught us that. But we do know that whatever it is our Father God will bring us through it.

I pray you all have an amazing New Years eve. We are going to some friends house and have a bonfire and play some games. A little different one again than recent years, but I wouldn’t have it any other way! Be Blessed WordPress!