This blog is not just a snapshot of my life, it’s a window into my heart.
I love to learn and I love to teach, but my passions are so varied that I needed a place to organize them all. That’s how this blog was born.
I’m sure you’ve figured out that the name of my blog, Taylor of All Trades, is a combination of my last name – Taylor – and a spoof of the saying, “jack of all trades.” Although I wouldn’t consider myself a “master of none,” I do know that my interests span many different aspects of life and this blog celebrates those differences.
But there’s more to me than just my posts and I wanted to share my story with you so that you can get to know the woman behind the blog.
I am a Christian
The most important thing anyone needs to know about me is that I am a Christian. Although I can’t claim to be a perfect Christian, not by a LONG shot, brining God glory is the the fundamental desire of my heart. I have a passion for Truth and an eagerness to display the goodness of Christ in every aspect of my life. I fall short so often, but my God is patient and He never forsakes. What He started in eternity past He will complete, and that is such a comfort to a Type-A, driven, perfectionist like me.
I am a Wife
My dad and I were just talking last night about what a good man my husband is. Sometimes I can’t believe I get to be married to the bravest, strongest, kindest, most patient, most upstanding, most handsome, most steadfast man on the planet. He’s such a gift, such a joy, and I love him more now than when we first met over a decade ago.
Don’t get me wrong, our marriage isn’t perfect. Andrew isn’t perfect. I’m not perfect. We have our ups and downs just like everyone else, and I can safely say that marriage is sometimes the most tedious, bewildering commitment I’ve ever made. But those moments don’t define my marriage. My marriage is defined by the One for Whom it exists: Christ.
I am blessed to be married to a man who loves the Lord and seeks to honor Him in everything he does. I am blessed to live in the faithful protection, provision, and love of a man whose character is rooted in godliness.
Being Andrew’s wife is the crowning achievement of my life; oh, how I love him!
I am a Mother
My babies. My little bundles of joy. My precious, precious munchkies.
Ok, fine, sometimes they are more monstrous than marvelous, but they truly are treasures in this momma’s heart and it is a joy to be the one who gets to raise them.
We have three earthly babies, two girls and a boy, and one angel baby in heaven. God called our Shiloh home at 8-weeks gestation and even though it happened over a year ago, it still hurts in a very real way.
But that’s just par for the course when you’re a mother – hurting for your children. If we had it our way, our children would never feel any kind of pain for any reason, ever. If we could, we would protect them from every ugly, harmful, hideous, hurtful thing under the sun and make sure they only ever knew goodness and grace and kindness and success and joy.
That’s not a choice we get to make, though, is it?
No, it’s not, but fortunately we can entrust them to someone who loves them even more than we do. Their heavenly Father is infinitely wiser, more loving, more powerful, more gentle, more patient, more generous and more able to sustain and protect them than we will ever be. And for that reason, we can trust Him with them. Even if we’re scared. Even if we don’t understand. Even if it hurts.
I am a Teacher
I am blessed to be able to teach at the most wonderful university under the sun – The Master’s University. I started teaching in the classroom just over seven years ago, and recently made the transition to teaching online so that I could stay home with my kids.
I received my Master’s Degree in 2014 in the field of Communication Studies with dual emphases in Rhetorical Criticism and Performance Studies and, before you ask, yes! it was a blast getting that degree.
Sometimes I think the only place I really belong is in the classroom, whether as a student or as a teacher (often times, those roles are one in the same). I have a hunger for growth and learning and teaching at TMU has been one of the great joys of my life.
I am a Fighting for my Health
I’ve been a daddy’s girl all my life, but I recently almost lost my dad. About 7 months ago he had the first of nine strokes but God has been so gracious in keeping Dad here on earth so that we can enjoy his company a little while longer.
The cause of his strokes were complications relating to unregulated diabetes – a disease which runs on both sides of my family and one which I had recently realized I was in danger of obtaining.
Six months before Dad had his strokes, I set out on a weight loss journey with a goal of losing 100 pounds in a year and I was determined to see it through. After learning a TON about health, nutrition, and fitness, I scrapped my weight loss goal and replaced it with a far superior aspiration: losing inches in keeping with a lifestyle that promoted the proper care of my body and my health.
I was doing pretty well before Dad got sick. I’d gone from a size 22/24 to a size 16 and I was feeling better and more energetic than I ever had. But sometimes there are more important ways to spend time than on a goal that can be put on hold. It’s all about perspective and priorities.
Dad needed me and I wasn’t about to chose a dress size over the man who has shaped and encouraged me throughout my entire life.
We are just now coming out of the woods as Dad recovers and I am fighting to get back to a place where my health is a priority. I chronicle my adventures in fitness here on the blog, so stay tuned for updates as I post them.
I am a Crafter
Crafting is my happy place. It’s my own little slice of heaven on earth and I have the crafting supplies to prove it. Although I will turn my hand to almost anything crafty, my absolute favorite way to spend time is paper crafting.
Whether it’s cards, invitations, boxes, bags, tags…if it’s paper, it’s got my name on it!
I’ve learned a great deal about crafting from other crafters and my two favorite crafting instructors are Sam over at PootlesPapercraft and Stacey over at Scrapbooking Made Simple (also my favorite brick and mortar crafting supply store).
Stacey is basically the reason I am the crafter I am today, and Sam is definitely the reason I have an affinity for making paper boxes. If you don’t know who these two amazing women are, go check them out, like, yesterday!
I am a Creative
You might think I covered this in the section above, but I added it as a stand-alone because, for me, being creative is something that transcends crafting – it’s at the core of who I am and influences everything I do.
…being creative is what keeps me vibrant and excited about life. There is always something new to learn, to try, to master. There are always more way to grow, to mature, to develop one’s sense of courage and accomplishment.
In other words, being creative is not something I do, being creative is who I am.
I am More and Less Than I Seem
And since this is my blog, “who I am” might seem like wonder woman, or a woman who has it all together. A woman who never struggles with insecurity, or inconsistency, or failure, or disorder. A woman without flaws.
May I be the first to say that that is 100% incorrect. A public representation of the best of one’s self might give others the impression that one is infallible, that she is more than what she seems. I’m here to tell you that that just isn’t true. I’m just an everyday woman like you. I’ve got Christ written on my heart, a husband wrapped around my shoulders, kids hanging off every limb, a house to keep, a job to do, and hobbies and interests that give me a sense of “self.”
There’s just no possible way I could publish everything there is to know about me and in that way I will always be less than what I seem. Only those who live everyday life with me know the real me, the me I don’t publish. They see the good, the bad, and the ugly. They have a sense of perspective and context that readers might not. They keep me humble and grounded and sincere. They love me and I need them.
So I guess what I’m trying to say is: don’t let this blog fool you. I’m not wonder woman. There is more and less to me than what I publish and I am honored that you have chosen to spend some of your time reading what I have lovingly labored to print.
May God use this blog for His glory and may we all continue to grow in ways that are pleasing in His sight!
Until Next Time My Friends,
The Taylor of All Trades