Our Weekend Adventure.

Our best friend and Unescorted author – Sonia Larcom had a birthday at the beginning of this month. We love her and wanted to do something so special for her- something she would always remember. BUT we had some competition because last year she went on a surprise trip to Vegas for her birthday, so we knew we had a lot to live up to. We decided to surprise her with a little camping trip. Sonia absolutely loves surprises, and I have no idea WHY (because frankly, I hate them).

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We found the most adorable cabin in the middle of nowhere in a little city called Mountainburg, Arkansas where there was no shortage of dirt roads, hillbillies, and so..many.. cows.

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Our cabin, complete with a sleeping dog to make the picture complete.

Sonia had no idea where we were going, which is what made this all so fun. She had her eyes shut the whole time. We lead her into our little one-room cabin, she opened her eyes and literally FREAKED out. We all paused for a moment, had a praise-break, and squealed with excitement. After we settled in, we decided we were hungry and wanted to go into town and eat at a local restaurant. This is was no easy venture, considering the closest town was 20 miles away. I looked up the best places to eat in Mountainburg, and McDonald’s was in the top 3, so we knew things would get interesting. We stumbled upon a tiny, overpriced burger truck where we stuffed our faces with greasy cheeseburgers and french fries. Most of our weekend revolved around eating, which is what we do best.

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Breakfast food is the greatest.

We had so much fun. We laughed uncontrollably, ate way too much, watched movies, did face masks (I had an allergic reaction to mine and practically burned my face off; and  to make it worse; Sonia and Cyrae couldn’t stop laughing at my pain). We also went for a hike, drank coffee, dreamed about our futures, and absolutely did not want to leave. It was so refreshing to get away, even for just a weekend.

When we really thought about it, this is the only time in our lives we can spontaneously plan a weekend trip to the mountains and not have any responsibilities waiting for us back home. I never want to take that for granted. We will never forget about our little trip, and you KNOW we already planned on bringing our husbands and children back sometime in the future.

It was so fun to capture this trip in photo-form! Here are some more of my favorite moments:

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I hope you enjoyed them! I encourage you to do this at some point in your life with your best friends, it was a trip we will never forget!

You are all wonderful people, thanks for all the love and support.

Until next time, Unescorted

-MJ

 

Shut up & dance with Me

Cyrae Blog

Hey Friends!!

Anyone who has known me for a long period of time knows a few things about me. Number one, children are my favorite people on this Earth. Number two, I hate feet with a passion, a very strong passion!  And thirdly, I love spontaneous dance parties; who doesn’t? In fact – just recently I had a dance party that not only made my entire day but gave me a new perspective.

I was babysitting one of my precious baby girls, we’ll call her Little O. Little O and I were having a dance party like we do so often because she loves dancing as much as I do. She also enjoys listening to many of the songs that I happen to love and so it’s fun spending these crazy and spontaneous moments together. This particular day right in the middle of our jam session she suddenly began to cry and was visibly upset. I of course, being the comforting baby sitter that I am (wink), went to see what was wrong. As I began to comfort her one of her absolute favorite songs came on. This particular song seemed to ALWAYS put a smile on her face regardless of the occasion. On a normal day, when this song began to play she couldn’t help but smile and start dancing. In that moment I had the thought,” Thank God, this YouTube channel is on point today.” In my mind it was an easy solution for this emotional moment she seemed to be having, at least I thought it was. I immediately looked at her and said, “O, LISTEN! It’s one of your favorites, you love this song!” but she would not stop crying. It was a complete fail. In fact, she was crying so loudly that she couldn’t enjoy or appreciate the moment at all. She couldn’t hear that the song playing was one that would bring her joy and make her smile.  Although this was a failed attempt to cheer her up, it made me stop and think. Who knew deep thoughts could come out of a dance party with an eight-year-old?

The picture I saw was that so many times as a single woman I am so busy crying, complaining, and focusing on being “lonely” that I’m missing the beauty of what is happening all around me. I’m missing this amazing occasion in my life constantly comparing myself to my peers. Whether they are younger or older they all seem to be so far ahead of me in life. Looking at my age and feeling that by some unsaid “standard” I’m behind in life is a constant battle for me. I allow all of these thoughts to scream at me and keep my attention, all the while missing the beauty of what God is doing all around me.

By the time I got Little O settled and happy again her song was over. The next song was good too, but it wasn’t the best song or the best moment that she could have experienced.  I don’t want this same occurrence to take place in my life. To look back when it’s too late and realize that I spent all of my time as a single crying, screaming, and discontent with the place I was in. The way I leave one season is how I will enter the next. What I do right now as a single woman is setting me up for what is coming next. I must learn to appreciate and make the most out of my NOW!

This is the heartbeat of Unescorted, learning to embrace and genuinely enjoy the place you are in. Redefining how this culture views living life as a single person. Life is not all about what’s next. If we’re always looking ahead to what’s next when will we ever learn to appreciate what’s going on now? When will we ever learn to live in contentment? We will find our handsome hunk then find ourselves discontent because we desire to have children.  Then we’ll give birth to a beautiful baby only to realize we still aren’t content because now we need to own a bigger home to raise our little family in. We can’t fool ourselves, dating and marriage are not solutions to the constant chase for “happiness.” (Check out Life isn’t About Happiness blog here)

Embrace, enjoyment, and contentment hold true in all seasons of life. LOVE your right now and live it to the fullest with no regrets!!

As if this dance party wasn’t already deep enough, along came another thought. The song Little O missed out on was called, “Shut up and Dance with Me” by Walk the Moon. Some of the lyrics in the chorus say this, “Oh don’t you dare look back, just keep your eyes on me…you’re holding back…shut up and dance with me.” In the midst of this moment of reflection I felt as if God was ever so gently speaking to me. Saying through the lyrics, “My daughter, don’t you dare look back in regret, shame, or disgrace. Stop looking around at others, keep your eyes on Me! You’re holding back and limiting this love relationship that I so deeply long to have with you. You’re wishing away this precious moment you and I can have together. Just SHUT UP. . . and dance with ME!!”

It hit me like a ton of bricks and all I could do was tear up and then chuckle. The God of the universe, the Creator of Heaven and Earth just asked me if He could have this dance! I imagined Him gracefully walking over as I stood dressed elegantly and alone. This is when the true test came, do I accept this invitation or do I stay a wall flower standing on the sidelines? Do I choose to gracefully waltz with my Father and bask in every twirl or do I continue to stand alone impatiently waiting for “Mr. Wonderful?” Do I dance or do I willfully remain unescorted?

I believe with all of my heart that this invitation to the dance floor is given to all of us every moment of every day in this beautiful journey called singlehood. However, it is up to us to continually CHOOSE to accept it. We must choose to lock eyes with Jesus Christ and trust that at the perfect moment He’s going to let someone else “cut in.” In the meantime, it’s up to us to learn to tango and to view each step and turn as the learning and growing opportunities that they are.

Whether you’re 18 or 48 learn to dance with Jesus. Get all dressed up and step out onto the dance floor with Him. Use this dance floor in your life and grow in your love relationship with Him, as well as those around you. To the world we may seem lonely but we are never alone or truly unescorted. We have a stud of an escort named Jesus Christ who can bring a fulfillment that no man ever could!

I hope this encourages you today the way it encouraged me! Keep dancing beautiful ladies, seize the day, and find the beauty in this season of life. You’ll find what you choose to focus on!

&&&& Don’t forget to join the conversation! We are thrilled to hear from you and would love to hear more! (See Say Hello page)

Until next time,

~ RAE. xx.

{P.S. Take a few extra minutes and listen to “We Dance” by Bethel Music. This is such a beautiful song, it will make you smile!}

Life Is Not About Happiness

Happiness Blog

Life, Liberty and yep you have it: the pursuit of happiness – is one of the most well known phrases in America. This famous phrase in the Declaration of independence represents the rights given to all humans by their Creator. An undeniable truth but lets not forget my title, Life Is NOT About Happiness. The term happiness has been perverted by our culture, redefined to really mean: self gratification. Although, Thomas Jefferson’s words were absolutely valid, we forget that they were based on scripture. Yet you look at the world and what they call pursuing happiness is not scriptural at all.

Happiness in todays definition is a loaded term, its all about being lead by our desires. Haven’t you heard someone say, “just do what makes you happy,” or I love this one, “follow your heart.” Our culture basically tells us that if it doesn’t satisfy you, don’t do it. Or if you want it, well by golly! You must have it! This mindset has sewn itself into the undertones of todays dating culture and its not only dangerous but its deceptive. Not all the urges we have are something we should pursue. (Drops the mic)

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Don’t get me wrong I don’t speak in a belittling tone, but more out of my own self criticism and actualizations. I am hyper aware of the intense pull of my own desires. It’s easy to discern that the chiseled tattooed hunk who smells of dangerously good calogne, is absolutely not a healthy choice. I am trying to emulate how this cultural expectation of pursuing “happiness” leads us into placing our fulfillment on being with a man.

Before I hear the rebuttal, we do deserve to be happy – it’s not wrong to have a desire for fulfillment. God gave us a holy desire to be united with a partner under marriage. However, happiness should be a product of a healthy relationship, not the basis of your foundation with that person. Anything standing on emotion alone is a foundation placed on sand, and you know what that means – Mathew 7:26. Listen up single ladies, marriage will be about service not self fulfillment. Ask any successful married couple and they’ll tell ya! Individuals who seek to find happiness in someone really aren’t seeking happiness at all, their just trying to fill a void; which screams instability.

Im going to interrupt this program and give the official disclaimer: This is not a feminist plug that we don’t need a man to be happy. I FULLY intend to have a Godly chocolate. . . or vanilla, or honestly whoever Jesus has in store for me (regardless of esthetics). Buuuut! If I could send up an order, y’all know those swirl ice cream cones? Yasssss Jesus, give me one of those!

I’ll just leave this here. . .

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Furthermore, happiness in its original – un-perverted form – is Joy. The possession of Joy is not only a blessing but a choice. Its given to us freely but we must choose to develop it and walk in it (Galatians 5:22). This is the right we have: to choose joy in every circumstance. Understand something, choosing Joy is hard, but it is available for us to have. I have personally only begun to taste of the true Joy God has given me during this season. And let me tell you, it is so sweet and rich I REFUSE to let a single crumb go to waste that God has provided during this time. Even so, if I keep up with the analogy, that means I fully intend to get my feast on and grubbbb. #HolyTurnUp

This season of singleness is not only a time of preparation to better ourselves, but it’s a time to establish who God has made you to be and who you are in Christ. In fact, its my goal to be whole foremost in Christ and in mature character before I even zip up my wedding dress. If I ever want to achieve this goal for myself I must redefine singleness. And that is what Unescorted is all about (our mission).

Join the conversation (see Say Hello page), get involved so we all can learn, experience and grow to maximum capacity during this season TOGETHER. You think I say these things because I am all bark and no bite? Don’t let the lipstick fool you, I am living this out like a warrior. Striving in my downfalls to learn to be a better woman, seeking wisdom every step of the way. This is about community, there is so much strength in numbers. So go! Quit seeking fulfillment in others. Love God. Love yourself. Find contentment in Gods timing and arrive exuberantly #Unescorted.

XOXO – Sonia Dee.