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Posts in “Faith”

Giving Thanks On Thanksgiving

Thursday, November 24, 2016

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Happy Thanksgiving to you! Unfortunately, we aren’t celebrating Thanksgiving with my husband’s family in Dallas this year since we moved to Houston. This year, we are happy to celebrate it in a simple way with my family. Today, I want to share what I am thankful for. I am thankful for these things not only today, but everyday! This is not my complete list, but here are my favorites!

  • My Husband  – I am thankful for having my husband Brent, and his understanding, patience and continually loving me, even when I’m in a grumpy mood. 😉 I am also thankful for him being the father of my two loving and handsome boys. Well, God made them, but I’m thankful for Brent’s handsome genes and his IQ… :)
  • Playful Kids – I thank them for teaching me to learn to be more patient and control my emotions. I am so thankful for their hugs, smiles, giggles, and the times my eldest son says, “I love you, Mama.”
  • Daily Challenges – I thank God for letting me experience challenges with my family, myself, or spirituality. These problems teach me to depend on Him and not only on the people around me, nor on materials things. This has helped me grow closer to Him.
  • God’s Word – I am thankful that now I’m 30, I’m learning God’s words by reading the Bible. His words feeds me in my weakness and temptations. I thank God for His word because it helps me discern between what is right and wrong. I also feel thankful that I’m learning to share His Word with my kids and hopefully, to the people who follow my blog.

What are you thankful for? Let me know in the comments section. I always love hearing from you.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!!

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DIY Painted Canvas With Inspiring Text

Monday, November 14, 2016

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #OREOThinSide #CollectiveBias

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I’m finally done organizing my work station, AKA my “me time station.” Having this area gives me a space to relax, blog, work, and reflect.. I’ve always believed that it is healthy for moms to have time for themselves. It’s important to have the time to keep yourself healthy, not only physically, but mentally and spiritually as well. I love my kids and I try to stay active with them during the first part of the day, but once it’s naptime… yahooo! Mama Time starts! (Insert dance move.) 😉 Instead of napping, which I rarely do, I chose to go back to do something I used to love before I became a mother. I’ve been going back to the days when I was an artist and have started painting. It makes me feel like I’m in college again! 

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I thought about what I wanted to paint and decided on an abstract painting, with inspiring words from Colossians 3:2. I love the message of this verse: “Set your mind on things above.” It actually cut right through my heart when I read it for the first time. I knew this would be a perfect reminder for me, especially around my work station, to balance life, work, and family and to focus on the things God wants for me. Today’s partnership is with OREO, one of my favorite snacks ever since I was younger.  Keep scrolling to learn to easily make your own inspirational painting. diy-abstract-painting-with-text3

Materials I used:

  • Canvas (I used 11.5″ x 15.5″)
  • Printed Text (Here’s a FREE Printable that I made)
  • Blue and White Acrylic Paints
  • Small Paint Brushes
  • Small Foam Brush
  • Pencil
  • Pen
  • Masking tape
  • Paint Palette (Optional) or you can use any kind of lid cap
  • Water

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Step 1: Begin applying the blue acrylic paint on the canvas.

Step 2: Use a small foam brush to even out the blue paint all over the canvas.

Step 3: Next, squeeze white acrylic paint on top of the blue paint as shown in the picture above.

Step 4: Use a small, flat brush to brush off the white paint in a horizontal motion. Do this to create a blend/blur effect between the blue and white paints.

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Step 5: I added more white paint to the bottom of the canvas to create a transition from light to darker blue across the canvas. I dampened a small foam brush with water, then squeezed the foam to remove excess water., I then used downward brushstrokes, followed by leftward brushstrokes, to create texture (see image below). Do this in a fast motion. Also, don’t forget to paint the side of the canvas.  After you’re done painting, let the paint dry

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Here’s a close-up of the brushstrokes and the texture. The stroke I used was inspired by the texture of a “banig,” which is a handwoven mat in the Philippines. You can follow this brushing style if you’d like, but since it’s an abstract painting, I think it’s more fun to follow your own feelings on what kind of brushstroke to use for your painting :)

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Step 6: While waiting for the paint to dry, write or print the text you would like to use on a piece of paper. Then start shading the back of the paper you’re using with a  pencil. Make sure you press hard with the pencil so the graphite will transfer onto the painting.

Step 7: Center the paper on the canvas and tape it on all four corners. Start tracing the text with a pen or pencil. Remember to trace firmly so that the pencil transfers onto the canvas. You may touch-up the text drawing to make it more visible if needed.

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Step 8: Start to fill the traced text using white acrylic paint. I used a small detail brush for small areas and a flat brush for wider areas. Tip: I like to mix a little bit of water with the acrylic in the palette for smoother application on the canvas. I put 2 coatings of white paint to make the color more opaque and brighter.

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Step 9: You’re done! Hang on a wall or lean on a shelf or desk to add inspiration and good vibes for your home. :-)

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Thanks to OREO for keeping me company while doing this painting. I enjoyed eating their thin and crispy cookies, which I grabbed from my nearest Kroger grocery store.
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How do you enjoy your “me time” moments?

Be sure to check out other fellow bloggers’ fun and inspiring stories here!

CATEGORY DIY, Faith
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A Simple Autumn Dining Home Tour

Sunday, November 6, 2016

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The first few weeks after we moved here, we didn’t have a complete dining table set. We had sold most our stuff when we left LA. Thankfully, I found a second-hand dining table online that Brent and I liked, which only cost $150. Its original color was black, and though I preferred white, the main top wood is what made us choose it! One of my good friends, Denise, has been repainting her own furniture lately. She inspired me to paint my own dining table since I like the color white. I think the color white makes our home feel more spacious and look brighter. It was my first time painting furniture, so it was a good thing that my friend recommended chalk paint. It’s really easy to use. Since it’s fall and Thanksgiving is coming, I wanted to make a simple fall-themed centerpiece for our dining table. Here’s what I came up with.
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My kids and I were walking outside and we saw these big, wide leaves that I thought I could use to style our centerpiece. I wrote words that inspire me on them saying: “Family,” “Thankful,” “Blessed,” and “Gather.” I added small pumpkins and used a tall rounded glass vase to place them in. I love the simplicity of it, especially since it doesn’t take up a lot of space on the table. I also added a wooden table runner that my mom brought from the Philippines. Below are a few similar products that I thought you might like to check out!

Natural Table Runner

Simple Farm House Dining Set

Glass Vase

Sleek Bench

Modern Square Canapé Plates

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Anyone else like styling their table centerpiece? What kind of style do you like to do for autumn? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

 

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7 Ways How To Feel Beautiful Fast

Monday, October 24, 2016

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #WetSkinMoisturizer #CollectiveBias

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I love the cool weather of early fall and late spring, but I can’t take the colder months. How about you? It’s been 5 years since I came to America from a tropical island, and I’m still not used to cold weather. Not only do I get cold easily (My husband says I need more fat), but the cold makes my skin much drier and I get lazy to fix myself up. Oops… Today, I’ll be sharing few of my favorite ways on how to feel beautiful fast during the cold months. These tips are also great for busy moms who have active toddlers like me!
1. BRAID OVERNIGHT

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If you’re tired of having your hair up everyday, try to braid your hair (when it’s dry) before you go to bed. When you wake up in the morning you’ll have an instant wavy hair look!  My favorite way to braid my hair is on the side (image above). I like to put down my hair during the cold season because my long hair acts as a shield for the cold breeze. 😉 This overnight braiding is perfect for busy women or moms, who are looking for a time-saving hair style in the morning.

2. MOISTURIZE IMMEDIATELY

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Moisturize your skin immediately. I love how Jergens Wet Skin Moisturizer offers an easy way to moisturize my skin. Right after showering I apply it to my wet skin – no need to dry off first!  Then, I pat my body dry afterwards. I like how convenient the process is: it keeps me from skipping moisturizing my skin after I shower. I picked up two different scents at Walmart. The first one was Jergens Wet Skin Moisturizer with Cherry Almond Essence, a new scent that is is exclusive to Walmart. I also grabbed a bottle of Jergens Wet Skin Moisturizer with Calming Green Tea Oil, and I love the smell!

3. MAKE YOUR OWN TINTED MOISTURIZER

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Cold weather makes my face dry, and that’s why I choose a foundation that also moisturizes my skin. I love to use tinted moisturizer. If you don’t have this product at home, you can make one on your own by mixing your favorite facial moisturizer and foundation together. Not only does it moisturize your skin, it also quickly evens out your skin tone. The application is fast and easy, as all you need are your fingers. Just apply it as you would regular moisturizer. Tip: If you have matte foundation, try to squeeze a little bit of highlighter liquid or a tiny bit of baby oil onto your DIY tinted moisturizer, and then blend them well.  This will help your skin look radiant and dewy during the cold season.

4. SWITCH TO CREAM BLUSH

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Like I often mention in my beauty posts, cream blushes are fast and easy to apply and they last longer throughout the day. Plus, they give natural blush to your cheeks without looking powdery. I also love to use liquid lipstick that comes with a wand. It’s convenient to use and I can also use it as an instant-blush.

5. WHAT YOU WEAR IS WHAT YOU FEEL

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During the fall and winter, it is so easy to stay in pajamas all day. Sometimes I notice my mom or husband are dressed up, and I ask, “Where are you going?” Often they are not going anywhere – they just like to look nice! One of the things I learned from my husband (who is a psychologist) is that taking the time to dressed up in the morning, makes you feel more awake and positive. You don’t have to dress up in formal attire or anything, just something nicer than your pajamas. Changing into some nicer clothes and fixing your hair and makeup a little bit can help lead to a beautiful feeling. Not only are you taking care of yourself, but you also inspire others (like your kids) to take care of themselves as well.  
6. ADD SIMPLE ACCESSORIES

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Whether you chose to wear sunglasses or add a scarf to your wardrobe, this is a quick and easy way to definitely boost your confidence and make yourself feel beautiful fast!

7. BEAUTY COMES FROM THE INSIDE

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Reading the Bible is one of the best ways to feel beautiful fast. Before my day becomes busy with the kids, reading my Bible in the morning helps me to think and feel positively beautiful. It’s a great foundation for your heart and mind, to feel and see the beauty of God working in you. I’m in the book of John right now, and I really like the verse where Jesus says, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give will become a spring of water gushing up inside that person, giving eternal life.” (John 4:13-14)

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By the way, Jergens Wet Skin Moisturizer has other scents like Nourishing Monoi Oil, Refreshing Coconut Oil (I’ll try this one next!), and Restoring Argan Oil. All of these scents are essential oils that work with your wet skin to lock in moisture. Try using this product right after you shower to experience how quickly it moisturizes, keeping your skin soft throughout the day.

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For more inspiring stories and tips for the fall and winter, check out the Jergens community bloggers here.

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What makes you feel beautiful fast this season? I’d love to hear your thoughts! :-)

 

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Feels Like Home: Moving Back to Houston

Monday, August 15, 2016

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Houston is the first place I lived when I moved to the United States. It was where I met new friends, and learned how to drive, not to be shy, and say, “Hi” to people passing by on the street. I made some improvements with my English too. For example, instead of saying, “Turn off the lights” I used to say “Brent, can you close the lights?” He would tease me and reply with, “It’s not a window.” Houston has been a big part of my adjustment with culture, language and style of living. When it came to culture shock, I had so many different experiences with it. I was shocked by things like the large food servings, big fast food drink cups, unlimited refills, etc. I saw other things that amazed me as well, things which are not a big deal for others, like the garbage disposal! I also remember my first year in Houston, I tried to make friends with our neighbors. I knocked on their door and the couple that lived there were so confused when I handed them some dessert. I don’t know if it’s uncommon in the U.S., but in the Philippines it’s common to bring food over to someone who has just moved into the neighborhood. It’s a friendly gesture and way of welcoming them. 

 

A couple weeks ago, we came down to Houston to check out possible places to live, and I’m so thankful that we found one that we like! Brent and I are SO excited that we are finally moving back there in the next few weeks. Due to Brent’s grad school, internship, and post-doctoral fellowship, we have been moving a lot! We’ve gone from Houston to LA, to Dallas, and now back to Houston again. I think we’re experts with packing our stuff now. 😉 Going back to Houston and having our own place to live with our children, are one of the things that we have been praying about for the past year. Now, God has answered those prayers!

 

Here are a few photos I snapped during our trip. We just celebrated our 5th year anniversary! I praise God for teaching us a lot of life lessons concerning love, understanding, and patience. What we’ve learned has helped make our relationship stronger, with unity and hope as a married couple.

 

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I found this J.Crew dress and Talbots handbag in thrift store. But here are other design items to buy for DRESS and HANDBAG :)

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5 years of marriage!

 

P.S. Hello Houston makeup clients, Em Smith makeup artistry is back! For bookings or inquiries, contact me :-)

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Sailboat First Birthday Theme Ideas

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

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We celebrated our youngest son’s 1st birthday over the weekend. I can’t believe that he is 1-year-old now! I also can’t believe that he has no reflux anymore! Hallelujah! My son is such a happy boy, he is such a sweet baby boy and patient too. For his 1st birthday, I thought of using a sailboat theme for his party, since his second name “Alon” means “(Sea) Wave” in Tagalog. We had a small gathering with my husband’s family and I made lasagna rolls (love this recipe, but I tweaked the sauce and added ground beef), Filipino BBQ on a stick (my mom’s recipe! YUM!), and some desserts. Below are the D-I-Y decors I made for my son’s birthday party. They are simple ideas perfect for small gatherings, like the one we had. Most of the decor is made of old boxes and construction paper. You can find the materials at most arts-and-crafts stores. Personally, I love going to Hobby Lobby to grab these art materials. It’s like heaven for an artist like me!

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I found this first birthday cake idea from Pinterest while looking for a cake recipe without egg whites. His cake is easy and fun to make. I found the frosting recipe from www.allrecipes.com.

What’s great about these ideas is that they are not only for birthdays! They can also be used for baby showers too! Share and pin your favorite sailboat decor idea :)

Have a great weekend and enjoy your 4th of July!!
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“Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved — you and all the people in your house….then he and all his people were baptized immediately.” Acts 16:31-34

 

P.S. If you’d like to get a glimpse of my daily life with my boys (and of course some things about makeup too), follow me on Snapchat: ememist

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Father’s Day Gift Idea: DIY Taped Crayon Art

Monday, June 13, 2016

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Father’s Day is coming up! Here’s one idea, perfect to do with your kids for surprising your husband with. My eldest son and I (with youngest son was there for moral support) actually made this crayon artwork for Brent’s birthday a few months ago. Since Father’s Day is coming, I wanted to share this idea and how we made it.

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Choose the paper you want and start to draw a message. The shorter the message, the better. It keeps it readable and easier to make, which is important right. Start covering up the art and create a border, using tape. With the artwork we made, I used regular scotch tape. Make sure to lessen the stickiness of the tape before applying it to the paper. This will make it easier to peel off later. I did this by applying the tape on my son’s shirt so that some of the lint would stick on it. I’ve actually used this method since I was in college, but of course, you can also use easy-to-peel off tape like blue painter’s tape.

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I used box cutter knife to start gently tracing and removing the excess tape.

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Have your kids use different kinds and colors of crayons! Tell them to go crazy! 😉 Of course, you may help them to fill up the image more. DIY_do_it_yourself_fathers_day_gift_idea_made_by_love_kids_activity_crayons_abstract_we_love_dada_5

Once you think the paper’s filled with enough crayon and colors, you may begin peeling off the tape

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It’s fun and easy! Happy Father’s Day! :)

“For I have chosen him, so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing what is right and just, so that the LORD will bring about for Abraham what he has promised him.” Genesis 18:19

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Importance in age of 20s

Thursday, April 21, 2016

20s

As I turn 30 this weekend, I thought I would share some of my favorite lessons and journeys that I’ve been on during my 20’s. I don’t normally share details about my personal life on this blog, especially about my past, but I felt it would be good for my readers to learn more about me in addition to my makeup and art :)

So here are a few of my favorite memories from my 20s, ones that I cherish and am thankful for! :)

welcome2 MOVING TO THE UNITED STATES –  Coming here was a big adjustment for me. I remember how afraid I was to go out of the house and meet people. Speaking English was also one of my weaknesses when I came here. I was very shy and conscious about my grammar and how my pronunciation sounded. I’m more comfortable with the way I speak now though. I’m also used to my family and friends in the Philippines joking about my English 😉 But hey! I think my English has improved (according to my husband 😉 ). Another big challenge for me was learning how to drive here (especially on highways) since I never drove in the Philippines. Driving is just one of my fears. I used to cry when someone would honk at me after I did something wrong. It would really hurt my feelings. LOL Now, I’m more cool with it. I just tell myself that they don’t know me, so let’s just move on. 😉 Finally, like I had discussed in a previous post, living here in the US has taught me to really appreciate a lot of different things. (Read my post here .)  marriage_1 GETTING MARRIED – When I was 25, Brent and I had a simple garden wedding in Dallas. None of my family was there, since they couldn’t get travel visas in time. However, Brent’s family and friends were there to witness and celebrate our wedding. I won’t lie, the first year of marriage was tough since I was totally immature. Marriage got even more challenging, especially after we had kids. This is how we can feel that God is really testing our patience and our trust in Him. Marriage taught me not to be self-centered; not “I” but “We”. I’m a person who doesn’t like to communicate when I get angry, but Brent always reminds me that we are a team that needs to help each other. We don’t have a perfect marriage; we have arguments and fights, but the important thing is that we are learning to talk about and share our feelings, as well as apologize to and forgive each other. My husband has been a big impact on my life. Although I know that he wasn’t the one who changed me, I believe God used him to open up my eyes.  baptismal_em_accepted_christ ACCEPTING CHRIST – Around the summer of 2012, I decided to get baptized and accept Jesus Christ into my life. It was at Impact Church of Christ in Houston that I got baptized.  When we were still living in Houston, this was the church we attended. Before I met my husband, I hated God so much that I would even curse at him a lot. I would blame him for every bad thing that had ever happened to me. I never felt peace of mind. I always felt empty and “emo.” Lol I made a lot of bad decisions in life. I smoked a lot, got drunk often between classes, cursed (because I thought it made me look cool and strong), told dirty jokes, and I was just a bad influence on my friends. It took a while for me to believe in and surrender to God. It was like taking baby steps. I still remember the feeling when I got baptized. I felt reborn again and that God forgave my past sins. I like how my husband continues to help me understand and learn more about the importance of Christianity. It helps remind me that there are things much more important in life than makeup or fashion. He never nags me to attend church nor to read the Bible. Instead, he leads by example, showing how Christians should act through his actions and heart. He also loves to share his favorite Bible verses which inspire and encourage me. Of course, I’m still an imperfect person and have weaknesses, but knowing what is right from wrong saves me from big consequences in life, and has taught me to repent.  motherhood MOTHERHOOD – It’s like a roller coaster!! Whoaaa! This is the most patience I have learned in my entire life.  Being a mother has taught me to sacrifice my time and even my career. It was really hard to leave work and be a stay-at-home mother with the kids. My husband has been supportive and reminds me that this is just a small amount of time to take care of my little boys. Soon enough they will go to school and I can go back to work and do whatever I want with my career. One thing that I love about being a mom is that it has taught me to go back to being silly, and to laugh about the little things; to not be too serious all the time! I’ve also learned that it is okay to cry when your day as a mom has been frustrating and challenging. I think it’s a good way to recharge your body and mind. Having kids has taught me to appreciate my own mother more and to be closer with my siblings. They always want to see my kids on videochat! Maybe I should charge them $100 per view? Haha! Kidding!  423818_10151188243562349_1671896357_n OPENING UP- Last year, my mother-in-law and sister-in-law invited me to join a Bible Study Fellowship. Since we have two kids, things have been challenging all the time. If you knew me before, I would like to make jokes about God, the Bible, and the people who believe in them. If you asked me to join a Bible study 5 or 10 years ago, I would have just laughed and not spoken to you anymore. In my mind, I’d think about how boring it would be, that it was only for old people and not cool to do. At first, I thought that Bible study was only for good people, but I was wrong. As a person shared to me, the Church and the Bible are actually for sinners because they need help and need to hear God’s word. Christians are not perfect, we are sinners. The important thing is that we confess our sins, repent, ask for forgiveness, and stand up again when we fail. There are so many things that I’ve learned from this study. Here are some of the verses that inspire me and convict me:

1 “Do not be shaped by this world..” Romans 12:2 – This verse reminds me that I should not try to follow what the crowd says, and be aware of who I admire and follow. This verse is very convicting, since I am person who easily admires others by the way they dress and what material things they have, even though I know that they do things that are against God. But I’m slowly learning to appreciate and admire people (especially in social media) by how they act as a good example, speak gently and respectfully, and how they are so dedicated to share God’s word. This year, I’ve come to realize that a person can look and feel “cool” without doing such offensives things to Him.

2 “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first” John 15:18 – I was always afraid to share or say something about God and Christ. I even felt shy to pray publicly because I felt people would judge or make fun of me. But what I learned from this verse is that if we believe in Him, we should be proud of saying his name. I also learned that if someone is against what we share about Christ, we should correct them gently and with respect. But if they try to argue in a harsh way, just stop and pray! 😉

3 “Think only about the things in heaven, not the things on earth” Colossians 3:2 – It is hard not to think about material things, especially when everyone around you has them. With all the advertisements, social media, and even blogs, they can make you feel left out if you don’t have these possessions. This verse makes me feel guilty sometimes, yet it has taught me to slow down. I’ve always loved makeup, but I’ve learned to slow down and stop thinking that, “It is my life, and I need these things.” Instead I think, “It is just makeup, material, a thing”. I remember telling my husband how I worried about my career and wanting to have more stuff. He told me that makeup, clothes, and shoes don’t matter in the end, as they will vanish and be destroyed. But living to the fullest and practicing to do good, will give us a great reward in heaven.

4 “So faith comes from hearing the Good News, and people hear the Good News when someone tells them about Christ.” Romans 10:17 – I also learned to find a church that bases its sermons on the Bible, not just stories and storytelling. I really wish I knew how to read the Bible before. I just realized how important it is for me, and even for my kids and marriage. I think if I just went to church and didn’t read the Bible, my faith would be incomplete. I’m not intelligent or smart person like other people I know, but reading the Bible helps strengthen and grow my faith as well as my decision making. I am still a newbie when it comes to all of this, but I can’t wait to learn more!  BSF_childcare Oh by the way, it’s amazing at church because if I go to the class, I can leave my kids at a childcare with awesome, loving people who will take care them. My son loves it because they sing. He loves to sing “Jesus Loves Me,” dance, and hear stories about Christ. Did I mention it is FREE?? BSF is all around the world. Check out their classes here. They have it in the Philippines too. Try to locate your country and find a class here. Don’t hesitate to call or come by, they are always happy to help and accommodate.  EmSmith(1of1)-29 BLOGGER X BRAND – I left my full-time job after giving birth to my first child. It’s a good thing that I’ve loved blogging and sharing images ever since I started doing makeup. Now, it gives me a chance to stay connected with the beauty, makeup, and creative industry. Early this year, I started to monetize my blog (meaning Brands pay me for my posts) and had the privilege to work with brands that I like!  My latest partnership was about Jergens.  I’m so thankful for my family and friends who support me in blogging! I appreciate them so much!  cooking LEARNING TO COOK AND BAKE!! –  It is just awesome to look back and see this accomplishment in my life: learning to cook! LOL Shameful to say, but my mom is the one who cooked our meals all the time when I lived in the Philippines. That’s why it was a shock for me to live in the US without knowing how to make my own food! (Well, I could make instant noodles. Does that count?). Since I love to eat, I was forced to cook my own meals for myself and for my husband. I learned how to make Filipino foods like Empanada, Lumpia (Egg Rolls) and other foods (I love Panlasang Pinoy for recipes and video tutorials). I also tried to make other western foods (Mostly from www.allrecipes.com).

I hope you had as much fun learning more about me, as I did sharing about my life. Thanks for reading my blog, and thank you for your support! :)

Happy weekend!!

P.S Check out my birthday giveaway HERE! Please make sure to follow @ShkadoodleNoodle in Instagram too! :)

 

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Hello Island Mama is a makeup, DIY, design, and lifestyle blog by Em Smith. She is the mother of three boys and a wife, who loves to inspire and encourage others through her works and stories. Originally from the Philippines.

"I can do all things through him who strengthens me." Philippians 4:13

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