Hello there lovely friends! Welcome to my little corner of the world — this update has been a long time coming, and I am so excited to finally be able to share it with you! My original blog was born several years ago when I was going through my back surgery, and since then life has changed in many, many ways and I have felt God telling me to refresh and renew and change things up on the blog as well — it is a step of faith, but I am excited to see what happens!
First, you are probably wondering where the name “Azure Dreams” came from. When I hear the word “azure“, I have always immediately pictured serene, clear blue waters of the ocean– I wanted to capture that spirit of depth, beauty and serenity in this blog.
For another reason, the ocean has always been a major part of my life – since I was born, I went to the beach every summer with my family for vacation, but it wasn’t until my late teens that I came to appreciate it in a deeper way. It was the first place I truly became aware of the depth of God’s wonder and the first place I experienced the feeling of closeness to God and the Holy Spirit — the beach was where I felt like I truly encountered God in a new and personal way; I feel like I am more of myself there than anywhere else, perhaps because of that connection to God. I’ve been chasing that feeling ever since and trying to recreate it in everyday life – pursuing that feeling of peace, unwinding, connection, awe and wonder.
I wanted to celebrate that with my new blog — in this, I feel that same closeness to God, but in a different way. I am learning day by day to be the me that He created me to be — dependent on Him alone, finding peace and rest in Him alone, and I’m finally dreaming my Azure Dreams with Him instead of on my own.
If you are new here, let me introduce myself: My name is Erika and I am a 30-something stay at home mom to a beautiful, sassy little toddler named Evelyn. She is a curly-haired answer to many prayers, a wonderful miracle in our lives, and brings us incredible joy as we watch her grow and experience the world — God gave us such a gift in her! I watch another little boy during the week who is just a month older than her; I’ve been watching him since he was born, and I call them my fake twins. It has been a challenging but rewarding road and truly a gift from God — I wouldn’t trade it for the world! I am married to a wonderful, funny, godly man named Richard and we recently celebrated 6 years of marriage — we are pretty much polar opposites in terms of most of our likes and dislikes, but he challenges me and supports me and cheers me on and we are learning more and more about our Father God through the miracle of our marriage — unconditional love is such a gift! We hold fast to our common faith, our mutual love for the outdoors and the wonder of our little family and keep on enjoying this crazy ride called life together — he is my better half for sure!
If you are able to go back and read a few posts, you will read about my MTHFR genetic mutation, and the issues with miscarriage that started my most recent chapter in my journey to better health. I will be sharing with you some more from those experiences, as well as recipes for some go-to healthy, “safe” meals we eat in this house (my daughter is also dairy and egg-free, so we do a LOT of modifications!), and some of our tips and tricks for a more healthy lifestyle. Our bodies are God-given vehicles to help us fulfill His purposes in life, so we better take good care of them, right?!
In this crazy world, we hear so much about the ugly side of life, and it seems like the drama and the pain of life get the front page every time — but I wonder what would happen if we all used our God-given talents to make it beautiful again? To celebrate life and peace and beauty and creativity? I don’t claim to be a talented artist, but I love to do it and feel like it brings me peace and calms my spirit, so as I create, I will share with you — I hope my work bring you happiness too! I doodle as I read the Bible, I paint as something comes to my mind, and I paint things that make other people happy, like their pets or favorite sayings — I love to make the world just a little more beautiful!
(Disclaimer: I don’t do it strictly for profit, but if anything strikes your fancy, I do sell my work and I have also committed to sharing part of the profits with a local charity that does amazing work called Tree of Life Ministries — check them out! Send me a message privately and we will talk if you’re interested in any specific piece!)
I want to share with you all different parts of my journey, so we will talk about parenting, housekeeping, life, and everything in between — I can’t guarantee that I am good at any of them, and I do NOT profess to be an expert at any of it, but I will share what God has taught, and continues to teach, me in those areas. And as difficult as it may be, I will try to be as honest and real as I can and share the struggles and problems too. I know that we all want to appear perfect and seem like we all have it together, but the reality of it is, we are all a mess, and maybe my mess will help you relate and not feel so alone. After all, you can’t relate to something that’s not real! And why do people like me share life like this, you may ask? Well, in my case, its because I feel like God asked me to, and because I can’t count the number of times I have turned to a blog just like this one and found encouragement, inspiration, or just plain amusement, when I needed it the most. 2 Corinthians 1:4 says that God comforts us …”so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” That’s what I want to do. God has brought me supernatural peace in the face of pain, weakness and sadness — maybe my story will help you find Him in those moments in your life. Maybe my struggle will encourage you. Maybe my faith will challenge you to seek God in a new way and start a transformation in your heart, your mind and in your home. Maybe my joy in the everyday miracles that we hold onto will encourage you to open your eyes to see the miracles in your own life.
That’s my hope and my prayer today and as long as I keep writing — that God takes this little blog and uses it to bless you. Thanks for coming alongside me and reading, I can’t wait to share with you!