The story before the “birth story”

The days leading up to Mila’s arrival were grueling. Mentally, emotionally and spiritually — I was tapped out. I kept grappling with trying to relinquish my constant need of being in control and giving it up to God/Mila/my body to do its thing.

I had three distinct meltdowns but the last one was the worst. I was starting to feel myself drift away. I was losing hope and sight of my baby’s natural arrival. I was inching closer and closer to an induction/hospitalization and I was losing it. I was lying in bed and tears kept rolling down my face. I had a couple meltdowns prior and Steven would come behind me, rub my back and tell me to “let it out”. This time, he asked, “What are you afraid of?” I’d tell him I was losing stamina. “Okay, what else?” I’m not going to be able to birth her at home. “What else?” He kept asking until I listed every fear that had been bottling up inside me for weeks. When it was all said and done, I was crying uncontrollably. My body was shaking, my eyes were burning, my head was pounding and all I could do was listen to the wails coming out of my body. It’s like I wasn’t in control (little did I know this would play a big a part in bringing my girl earthside…).

Everyone (EV-ERY-ONE) kept giving me their tips and “tricks”. Some told me to let it go. “She’ll come when she wants to come.” “Try not to think about it. Do something to get your mind off things.” “Go for a swim.” “Do nothing.” “Watch Netflix” (like who wasn’t already doing that during COVID?). Others recommended lunges, stairs, stretches, teas, foods, oils, herbs, activities (aka: sex) and the thing is — I listened to them all. I did it all. There was nothing I wouldn’t try. As soon as a new DM or text arrived, I’d scurry to figure out how I can get my hands on said magic potion. 

There was nothing I wouldn’t try to help my baby make her way out.

Looking back on it, I think I was so determined to speed things along because the last 2ish weeks of my pregnancy, I was totally comfortable. All the discomfort, aches, RLP, cramps, etc. were gone. I was actually feeling comfortable. The more settled into this pregnancy I became, the more I worried she’d never leave the womb.

For a while, the idea “she can’t stay in there forever” comforted me. But once the days of repeating that to myself turned into weeks, I actually began fearing that she’d die in my womb. She’d lose amniotic fluid, my placenta would no longer be viable, her umbilical cord would stop pulsing and I would lose my baby before having the chance to birth her. Pretty morbid, right?

That’s the mental game.

Things that are 99.99999% impossible started feeling like reality. My mind could not comprehend what my body was doing (or not doing) so it started making up the most outrageous outcomes — none of which would come with warning.

During one of the sleepless nights, I finally wrote a letter to Mila. Tears flowed onto my screen as I typed away. I don’t think I’ve ever written anything as vulnerable and one day, I’ll share it with her.

My midwives told me if I’m still pregnant at 41 weeks, I needed to get an ultrasound and NST (non-stress test) to make sure everything was still a-okay. Knowing the 42 week mark was the next “checkpoint”, Planner Taylor didn’t want to have less than 7 days to come up with a new plan if anything was amiss during the ultrasound, so I scheduled it for 40+6. That experience alone reminded me why we chose the route we did — to be as far away from a hospital/medical facility as possible. While most of the staff was kind, the entire setting felt uncomfortable, sterile, and caused my anxiety during my NST to heighten.

Thankfully, the results spoke for themselves. Mila had a ton of fluid, great movements, strong heart tones and the doctor cleared us for another week before needing to come back for another ultrasound and likely, an induction. Despite it all, I’d only seen Mila once during our 20-week anatomy scan so it was actually nice to see her once again.

Feeling comforted that my baby was still alive, I went to my 41 week appointment the next day absolutely determined. She checked my cervix, still 1ish cm dilated and 70% effaced. Asked if I wanted another membrane sweep (you’re already in there — go for it!). A few nights later, I started getting surges closer together. I’d been feeling them for over a week, but they were finally starting to pick up. I kept my doulas in the loop and they kept offering to come support me, if I needed it. I didn’t know how serious they surges were so I kept dismissing it and said I was fine. Doulas told me to sleep and when I couldn’t sleep anymore because of the intensity, I asked her to come over around 5:30 a.m.

By then, Steven drew me a warm bath (per her instructions) and it relaxed me to the point that my surges stopped! When she arrived, she found me eating a slice of toast with almond butter and chit chatting away. I’m sure she already knew it wasn’t happening that day and there I was thinking I just got a moment of peace. We went for a sunrise walk with the dogs and as the surges came, she kept telling me to move through them to keep them going. Things felt like they were picking up but when we returned from our walk, she told me to rest. I knocked out for two uninterrupted hours. When you’re trying to progress, uninterrupted anything is not ideal. At this point, it was time to call in reinforcements (my midwife) for boot camp.

We did all the things: alternating 15 min on/off the pump, swigs of cottonwood bark, utilizing every birth tool out there (peanut ball, birth stool, birth ball, etc.). Steven has some hilarious photos of the experience. None I’d let him share. We watched The Morning Show in between rounds (odd choice in preparation for baby’s birth, but whatever — I love me some Jen Aniston!). Around noon, midwife left. Told me to relax and if things weren’t going by then, she gave me castor oil to take at 4 a.m. With every fiber of my being, I did not want to take it. But it would be the Hail Mary before induction, so I agreed.

That afternoon, I had my weekly chiro appt still scheduled so I decided to go in for it at 4:40 p.m. Steven drove me and while on the table, I had 3 surges! My chiropractor is also a doula and was coaching me through them. I’ll never forget her cues and realizing how much tension I’d been holding onto. (Dr. Lindsay — I’m forever grateful for your help in that moment!)  When I left, the whole team hugged me. I’d seen them almost 10 times since my due date and they’d never done that but at that point, I was feeling the surges way more intensely that it didn’t strike me as odd. (The team later told me they all knew I was in labor and just wanted to send me off with all the good energy!)

And now for the actual birth story…

The One Thing You Should Do Every Day

How many motivational speeches or influencers have told you the trick to their success is making their bed every day? Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit, considered this a “keystone habit” because it increases productivity, encourages more good behavior, helps you stick to a plan/budget, etc.

I call boohickey.

I’ve never liked making my bed. Yes, I love how it looks when it is made, but the process of making it every morning knowing I’m going to crawl right back into it when I come home seemed like a wasted effort. I’m never in my room when I’m home. I try to keep that as the place where I sleep and get ready and nothing else.

After college, I moved in with my cousin and friend. It was a two bedroom apartment but the master was HUGE. We had two queen beds, two desks, night stands, an incredible pile of clutter, and still had enough floor space to hold a private yoga class. We’ve been close all our lives so sharing a room with my cousin was no biggie. When I first moved in, I’d come home from work and my bed would be made! My cousin loves a clean bed. It was such a sweet gesture and it definitely made the room look a lot neater, but it just wasn’t something I ever cared to do. (She also gave up on making my bed when she realized I’d never do it on my own – sorry, Riss!)

And yet, after all these years, I’ve still wrestled with this. Everyone talks about how they can’t leave the house without a made bed, how they don’t understand how people get anything done if they can’t even make their bed, how stressed out they become when their room is disheveled (I’ll give them that one – if you spend a lot of time in your room). I’ve tried (really really hard) to make it a point to make my bed each morning. But when I’d come home, I wouldn’t even appreciate it. Those three extra minutes yanking the sheets I kicked all the way to the bottom of the bed, bending over 10 times to pick up every throw pillow that fell off throughout the night and hopping from one side to the other (while trying not to knock the contents of my night stand off), was a really exhausting way to start my day.

I decided it wasn’t for me. But the premise of beginning your day with an accomplished task or setting the tone for the rest of the day — now that intrigued me.

Lewis Howes had Bob Proctor on his podcast “The School of Greatness” and he shared his morning routine of writing down five things he’s grateful for. He even went so far to write it with his less dominant hand because it forced him to slow down, think about every letter and put intentionality into his list.

Ed Mylett shares the same theory. Rather than waking up, allowing the bright light from your phone wake up your senses, struggle to see through your crusty eyes and immediately jump into emails or social media, he reserves the first 30 minutes and last 30 minutes of his day to choose what he wants to think about. It could be meditation, prayer, journaling. I had all the praise hands go up when he said, “Why am I going to start my day reacting to other people or what they need FROM me?”

Over the last two weeks, I have spent the first 20-30 minutes of my day in my journal. I set my alarm a bit earlier to allow me to have the time. Turn it off and leave my phone in my room. I head to my dining table where my journal, Bible and a devotional are waiting for me. I start with my devo, write down my prayer and then jot down five things I’m grateful for.

After a few days, you can’t help but feel unoriginal for writing “Waking up. This home. My dogs.” more than once, so it challenges you to think of those small, easy-to-forget moments from the day prior that made a difference. Now I’m writing things like, “Had to buy an expensive gift at Target, but when I got there they had a $30 gift card for that exact item so it really helped. Woke up and realized I forgot blow out a candle from the night before – nothing was damaged! Traffic wasn’t as bad as Waze predicted and I got home 10 minutes earlier than expected. Steven cooked an amazing dinner for me – even though he’d worked almost 12 hours that day. A friend texted me and it made me feel loved.” Now that’s a habit I can get on board with!

Not only does it get easier to make the list, but you start noticing those “in between” moments throughout the day. Whenever something less than great happens, you can see the positive or the way out or the triviality of it before it ruins your day because you already recognize all the other reasons why you’re grateful.

For me, I didn’t want my lists to live on my phone. It’s too great of a temptation. Plus, like Proctor said, when you put pen to paper, you’re that much more mindful of your words. Even when I travel, I’m lugging around this huge journal to keep a running list. I love being able to go back and read previous lists because I forget all too quickly those everyday moments.

  1. Set your alarm for 20 minutes earlier.
  2. Say a prayer and ask for an open heart and mind to recall what you’ve been given.
  3. Journal away from your phone/computer.
  4. Write 5 things you’re grateful for (try to keep it unique and reflective of the day prior).
  5. Go about your day feeling incredibly accomplished blessed.

Bonus: since doing this, I’ve had the greatest sales month of my career (and we’re barely halfway through the month). It was unexpected. May have nothing to do with this daily practice. Or maybe it has everything to do with this daily practice. Regardless, I enter each day feeling more and more renewed and grateful so when blessings come FLOWING down, I can’t help but feel that much more excited for the next day and the next. I’m no longer dreading each day because I have so much to look forward to. I’m in a state of expectation and anticipation because when I fan through my lists, how could I not have total faith that God has so much in store for me?

I’m Back, Baby!

Originally written on July 18, 2018. Never posted – not sure why I didn’t!

I had such high expectations to document our home search and buying process through this blog and I completely dropped the ball. Buying a house is HARD, y’all! It consumes SO much time, causes SO much anxiety and is SO.EXPENSIVE. Maybe I’ll be able to recount the 30-day whirlwind and do a post, but in the meantime, let me just say this…your down payment is nothing. You may afford your down (which we had in the bank, thanks to incredibly disciplined saving since we got married), but it doesn’t cover closing costs, inspections, whatever pertinent touch ups your home may need (unless it’s brand spankin’ new) and furniture. Ohhhhh lawwwdy, furniture! Rugs, drapes, dining table, appliances, couches…all of it. Steven and I both came from hand-me-down furnished places and since this was our first home, I wanted it to be a representation of us! I would tell people once we moved into our house, that’s when the big spending happened. Every transaction was $1,000+ and I would wake up in the middle of the night from a nightmare that we ran out of money and had to foreclose within our first month. We didn’t even have a mortgage payment our first month – hah! Paranoia at its finest.

Okay, if anyone is in this process or considering, you bring the Xanax and I’ll bring my sage advice (for the record, I’ve never taken a Xanax, Mom!).

It’s been six months of living in this house. It definitely feels like our home (we even did an in-home session with the amazing Brittany Gilbert who I met on Instagram!)  and I’m so excited about making the time to get back into writing.

Every time we plop on our massive, 0% interest-financed-couch, turn on the TV that rests on our midcentury Wayfair TV stand and bask in those moments of doing nothing, I’m reminded that it was all worth it!

No Tree for Me

I love Christmas. I love the reason, the music, the spirit, the joy of gift giving (it’s my top love language)…I love it all! With that being said, I can be a Scrooge at times. My resourcefulness tends to deter me from going too far into seasonal decor or frivolous gifts.

When we got married, we had our first Christmas after two months of marriage. We talked about starting our own Christmas traditions and we decided on curating our Christmas ornaments. I didn’t want to go to the store and buy a preselected assortment of ornaments – we wanted our tree to reflect us and the year we just experienced.

2015 – Steven’s sweet cousin, Sarah, got us a wooden ornament with our names & wedding date embossed into it. We purchased a globe ornament and circled the Philippines to commemorate our honeymoon and first international trip together.

2016 – That year I learned calligraphy and made personalized ornaments for me, Steven and Amber.

2017 – The big move to Texas. We got a Texas shaped ornament that says “y’all” and another wooden ornament from the Christmas at the Silo’s concert.

My mom added to that tradition and has been getting us the Pottery Barn dated frame ornament as another way to highlight a moment from the year.

We’re currently in a 990 sq ft temporary dwelling that is furnished with more than we will ever use and there just isn’t much space for a Christmas tree. We’re going home for Christmas so it didn’t seem practical to buy a tree that we’d only enjoy for a few weeks (see that Scrooge-ness coming in?). Thankfully, Trader Joe’s sells these mini potted trees that can hold this year’s ornaments!


In just three years, we have a box full of ornaments that mean so much to us. I cannot wait for our kids to add to the tree and see what it’ll look like 10-20 years from now!

What type of holiday traditions do you participate in?

With love and warmth and just a teency bit of Scrooge-ness,


PS: And just so y’all know we are living in bizarro land…it was 80+ deg a few days before coming out of work to find my car like this:


Everyone just keeps telling me, “That’s Texas for ya!”


Black Friday on a Budget

One year during college (I think it was 2009), a few friends and I decided to experience our first Black Friday madness. We headed out to Cabazon Outlets around 11 p.m. on Thanksgiving and quickly realized we were about 5 hours too late. Parking was non-existent (nearby homes were selling spots on their driveway for $20!); the swarms of pushy people exasperated my anxiety of being in crowded spaces; the lines went out the door and the line we so happened to wait in had people in front of us smoking so many cigarettes that I later threw up from the nausea; and the cherry on top: I walked out with two pairs of jeans that were basically forced purchases to justify our trip out. NEVER.AGAIN.

With the convenience of online sales these days, I think most people can agree that shopping from home in your sweats is way more thrilling than any trip to the mall. Because let’s face it, way less rational thinking goes into clicking “add to cart” than  watching your total skyrocket at the cashier. (Why is it easier for me to say, “Actually, I changed my mind, I’m not going to buy that.” to a human being than convince myself of it when I’m checking out online?!) But when my inbox and Instagram feed started getting filled with teasers and sale announcements last week, I was in a much different mindset. Now that we’re living in a new state and adjusting to this monumental life change, we on a budget.

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You want to know see my wild purchases?

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  • Face wash / BeautyCounter. The lightest, cleanest option I’ve found at a great price point. My beautiful friend Justine Campbell introduced me to it and I’ve loved every product!
  • Foundation / Crunchi. Obviously, another clean, non-toxic product that I’ve used this entire year and it’s ah-mazing. It smells ridiculously good, free of all the cancer-causing, hormone-disrupting, junk AND it works better than any other conventional product I’ve ever tried. (I stopped using my current bottle every day just to stretch it until Black Friday. Mama lookin’ real natural at work these days)
  • Cleaning solution / Branch Basics. I’ve read about how this is the only product you’ll need for any household need — I’ve been itching to try it so the 20% off finally convinced me to try it.
  • A sweater and jumpsuit (okay so that wasn’t a need to have…I’m actually proud that only one blogger I follow influenced me to make a purchase. And how much does that look remind you of Julia Roberts in My Best Friend’s Wedding?)

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  • Laundry detergent / dropps. If you have a few minutes and want a good laugh, click the link and watch the intro video. I already had a favorite natural, eco-friendly detergent but this video suckered me in and now I love these pods.
  • 10 pack of classes at my favorite barre studio that beat using ClassPass

Exciting stuff, right?! I needed to buy/refill all of these items but figured I should wait to see if BFCM would bring any good deals. So now, eight years later from my first (traumatic) experience, Steven still shudders at the words Black Friday and I try to suppress his PTSD with extra tight snuggles in the warmth of our bed as we drift off to sleep knowing we have all we need. Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5 

Xo, Tay

A Texan Thanksgiving

A Texan Thanksgiving

I’ve been very blessed with a work schedule that allows for every Friday off. Typically goes like this:

  • Sleep in (8 a.m.)
  • Go workout
  • Walk Amber
  • Clean the house
  • Catch up with a loved one (Dona my first Friday and my Daddy this past Friday)
  • Run some errands

…all before Steven gets home. By Saturday, I’m already feeling at a loss of things to do and always ask Steven, “So what are we doing today?!”. Poor guy works 6 of the 7 days so he certainly does not share the same enthusiasm (but he’s a trooper so he goes along with whatever I come up with).

It was the most beautiful day. The clouds were gone and the sun was beaming down! So we took Amber for a hike through yet another river (I swear we have a completely different dog in Texas) and tried to soak in the sun all morning.

My co-worker/boss, Brittney, texted me asking what we were up to for the day and asked if we wanted to hang out. She starts telling me of all these free events happening around town. Tiny homes + free tacos. Jazz music + free BBQ. We decided to go for it all and have  an afternoon filled with as much free food as we could get our hands on. Our first stop: Lockhart. 20+ miles out of Austin. We get there — no tacos. Just tiny homes and chips. We get our fill, hop back in the car and head back into town to get that free BBQ. We roll in, Steven & Britt go to use the restroom, I make small chat with these two guys who said the BBQ was gone within the first hour of the event and realize we are 0-2. Austin has so many cool events and happenin’s and yet we kept missing each one by a SMIDGE! We decided to cut our losses and go find food that would definitely be available … a restaurant. Britt asks us, “Do y’all like Mexican food?” We pretty much laughed and explained that CA is basically Mexico when it comes to food. She took us to her favorite place, Matt’s El Rancho, where the server asked if we’d like a “bob” to start. Looking absolutely dumbfounded, she explains that it’s basically guac, ground beef and melted cheese. That’s all we needed to hear before we said, “heck yeah!” It did not disappoint! The night went on for hours as we laughed, continued eating and quickly realizing Britt & I were kindred spirits. Steven later told her husband that he hung out with two of me all day. What a lucky guy!

Britt & Grant invited us to their Friendsgiving the following night and I wasn’t sure if Steven would be down for it but he happily agreed. We have two friends here (the Popes who came from Redlands) so we were definitely in need of expanding our friend base. Never have I realized how Californian I was until tonight. With each person who arrived, there was another meat, sausage, queso that I had never seen before. And what did I bring? Spinach (spanakopita). I clearly did not know my audience but they all liked it!

There was “swamp sausage” (basically cajun style rice mixed into the sausage), steak, BBQ chicken, another something sausage with cheese and jalapeños, risotto, green bean casserole, fried turkey that was caught the day prior by the dude who brought it. Oh my goodness – it was amazing. It was like popcorn chicken but with the freshest turkey you’d ever tasted. The Martin’s were amazing hosts and we were so grateful to be included! Back at home, we’d do Friendsgiving every year and I did my best to fight off feelings of loneliness and distance this time around so I was really touched to be in the company of friends — even if there weren’t ours!

Steven and I talked about our first Texan Thanksgiving the whole way home. We would never have known any of this if it weren’t for Britt and absolutely soaked in every second of it! Steven’s ready to go huntin’ with the boys and I…I’m still holding out for some freshly caught fish!

Taking the CA out of the Catalons

It’s official, y’all! The Catalon’s are no longer Californians. I can use the word “official”  because as of 7:30 p.m. CST last night, Amber arrived and made our home complete.

Our Dodger Blue home

I’ve been eager to write this post because that will have meant a) we finally made it to Texas and b) I’m done packing and unpacking.

But let me tell you, it was quite the roller coaster to get to this momentous point:

I’ve moved countless times – mostly westbound along the 210 with my mom growing up – but some pretty big moves too, including Napa Valley for college and around the world to Florence, Italy. I considered myself a Master Packer (I think there’s a Filipino joke there but I’m too white to remember exactly what it is…) and figured this move wouldn’t be much more difficult. Steven has moved twice. Numerous times in and out of his dorm room at PUC and then to his own place in Loma Linda (until I kicked him out so Kathryn and I could turn it into a basic girl’s dream – fiddle leaf plant included).

Figured it’d be no biggie. We decided on a fully-furnished, all utilities included, short-term rental house to alleviate the stress of moving furniture and getting everything set up while we begin our quest for our first home purchase (that’s going to be another blog post later…). Steven’s work asked him to start on October 16 so the plan was to quit my job October 12 and head east shortly after. Three days after announcing my plan to my boss, Kelly, I realized I was so.not.ready to move. Work was crazy busy. House wasn’t even close to being packed up. And emotionally, I hadn’t even processed what this move would mean. I quickly texted Steven and asked how he felt about going ahead of me (and Amber) and we’d meet him at the end of the month. Being the trooper that he is, he agreed because he knew I needed the time and he couldn’t postpone work any longer (they had already extended his start date to accommodate our Italy trip in September). Turn of events instance #1.

When Steven left for Austin, I had no distractions (minus MLB Postseason … RIP Dodgers 2016-2017 season) and figured I could knock it out in no time. Upon surveying the contents of our quaint 1,005 sq ft home, I quickly became astonished by how much we’d accumulated in two years. I grabbed my phone and texted my mom, who was planning on visiting the following weekend, if she’d be game to help me with a yard sale. She replied “Yes!” and it was settled – I’d be running my very first yard sale! Turn of events instance #2. Those days leading up to it were wholly consumed by the yard sale – inventorying, categorizing, pricing and prepping. When it was all said and done, I had close to 75 people rummage through my prized possessions, three personal home-shopping visits, numerous OfferUp meet ups, 12 hours of sleep in three days (I kid you not) and added $1,300 to our checking account. It was a great outcome but I was doggone tired after. I had zero energy to pack what was left of the house and couldn’t even figure out where to start. And by that time, it was T-minus six days to get everything done! My work BFF, Ally, must’ve sensed I was internally panicking and came over that week and helped me pack 80% of the house. I honestly don’t know what I would’ve done without her (other than torch the house to the ground and peaced out).

Now, it’s Sunday — T-minus one day. House is packed. Boxes were ready to be loaded in our car. Let’s do this. Steven’s parents arrive to help us load up the Subaru and they casually mention they’re going to Game 6 of the World Series with Stacy and her boyfriend on Tuesday (mind you, Game 5 hadn’t occurred yet so we were all anticipating Game 6 to be the final game for the Dodgers to bring home the coveted championship…where are all the sobbing emojis?!).  Steven looks to me and sees the jealousy spewing from my face. His dad lightheartedly says, “Stay for the game! Steven doesn’t have to be at work until 3 p.m. on Wednesday … you guys can just fly to Austin!” [Checks Southwest — 6 a.m. flight out of LAX Wednesday morning]
But what about our car? “Mom and I will drive the car on Friday!”
What about Amber? “She can ride with us!”
How are we going to get tickets?! “Ate hasn’t bought them yet … [proceeds to call Steven’s sister and she just hits the + sign to increase the number of tickets from 4 to 6 and says, “DONE”].”
I GUESS WE’RE STAYING A COUPLE MORE DAYS! Turn of events instance #3.

Last time in our first Catalon Casa. Please excuse Steven’s attire — he decided to wear every piece of Dodger paraphernalia that he owned for the game.

We quickly unload the car, transfer as much as we can into four suitcases (thanks for the free checked bags, Southwest!), fill the new space with more stuff that would’ve been in the garage and soak in the fact that we were going to go to our very first World Series game! The Dodgers gave us the best sporting experience of our lives and the perfect final night in California with our family. We were all so pumped after the win, no one could possibly feel sad as we said our goodbyes.

My in-laws and Amber hit the road Friday afternoon and had an adventure of their own to get here. I still can’t believe they willingly offered to do the trek instead of us but we are unbelievably grateful. Amber was a perfect passenger and even got her own bed in the hotel.

Girlfriend is taking full advantage of being the closest thing to a grandchild.

I can’t believe we’re actually here but I couldn’t be more certain that God had His hand over every twist and turn to get us here. Prayers and visits are always welcome. We’re loving getting to know our new city and I can’t wait to share more about why we decided to call this place our home!



So why Delight & Dwell?

I chose the name “Delight & Dwell” because one of my favorite books, Uninvited by Lisa TerKeurst, has a chapter about “living loved”. That chapter hit me like a ton of bricks and at the end of it, she included two of my favorite Bible verses. I thought I felt my heart freeze in that moment — I was so stunned.

It has been on my heart for years to start writing again but I wanted it to be intentional. I didn’t want to start writing and then lose focus (like I always do). Life was crazy. Work was crazy. Married life was just beginning. There was always something else to do and I didn’t even know where to start.

But that’s the thing about the pace we live our lives, right? We go go go and only come up for air. That is not living! That is surviving. One of the trainers at my kickboxing gym always would say, “Don’t just survive the work out.” Surviving doesn’t allow for growth (or in his case, inability to sit or stand for dayyyys). So why should we go about life that way?

I was really hung up on what I wanted to name my blog. I figured once I knew that – then the creative juices would flow. I read that page over and over and the words delight and dwell kept jumping off the page.

To me, “delight” means you relish, appreciate, and savor something. To “dwell” happens when you slow down, act intentionally, and allow yourself to sink into the moment, place or feeling. Don’t you already feel calmer after reading that sentence?

I’m SO excited to share the things that brings delight to my heart and where I find places that allow me to truly dwell.



“Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4 ESV).

“He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall remain stable and fixed under the shadow of the Almighty [Whose power no foe can withstand]” (Psalm 91:1 AMP).

PS: I started to blog right before I graduated from PUC – it was intended to document my journey into adulthood and posterize the wins and fails of navigating my way through it. I found a way to import those posts into this page so you can find them under Recent Grad and experience life through the lens of a 21-year-old (and perhaps get a good laugh at the naivety of it all).

Jarred Resolutions

Have you seen those ideas on Pinterest where you put a $1 in a jar every time you work out, so by the end of the year you have (well, should) $365. For lack of making a resolution this year, I decided to tweak this idea a bit. Every month, there is $25 up for grabs. $1 for every time I work out or do something active. For every $1 leftover, that money will be given away. This way, for the days I’m too lazy or unmotivated, someone else will reap the reward. If I am consistent enough and earn some major cashish, then great! If not, homeless people on street corners and my broke friends shall prosper. #happynewyear #gymjar #pinterestgotnothinonme

Sweet Ache

I’ve had no craving for sweets or junk food since I started the 12 Week New Body Makeover but I’ve been feeling kind of sluggish today and was craving some chocolate. My office had a party and I gave in and grabbed a mini ganache cake and I barely finished the last bite and I have the worst stomach ache. This is terrible. My body is resisting some of life’s best pleasures.