Adventures with Heather

Monday, August 7, 2017

Noisetrade, The "Mom Life" Music Video & Conquering Fears.

I am ALL about being open and honest about my "process" as a musician, mom & person. If you follow me on social media, you know that to be true. :) I hope that my transparency helps someone else in their process & helps you to know you're not alone!

So here's my process these last few weeks..

Last week I started a mini Fundraiser on to help raise some money to market "The Life EP". I'm selling "Songs for Healing" for $6 or donation of people's choice, to hopefully make the extra money I need to get "The Life EP where it needs to go.

Up to this point I had been self sufficient, paying for recording & a music video on my own, but I realized I needed some help! I didn't have a dime to actually make copies of the EP, merch & all the ways you need to pay for ADs on social media to widen your reach as an artist &so many other little things. If you're an indie musician, you know how quickly the costs can mount! I also want to make another music video for "20 Years From Now", a song that always hits people's hearts when I play it live. One of my goals with music is to have the music fund the music, & to never draw from our personal money, because we don't have a lot of extra.

In my heart of hearts, I REALLY want to do this EP right. In the past I've released albums, but I've never had a real marketing plan behind them. They each had mini successes, but it had nothing to do with marketing, just random luck really. This time around, I have a solid marketing plan, know what I want, & I know it's going to go places!! I'm dreaming BIG &it's exciting AND extremely SCARY at the same time!

So, I felt sort of embarrassed & discouraged when no one responded to the post about the Noisetrade Fundraiser at first. Fear rose up in my heart, "is this going to work? What if no one likes my music? Who am I to think I could do what I'm planning to do?" I even broke down  cried on a FB Live when I expressed my heart for this project & just longing for someone to believe in me.

I prayed, cried and God got to work. Right after I prayed, I got an Email from Noisetrade asking if I wanted to be featured in the "New & Noteable" section of their website & featured in their newsletter. They have a reach of 1.7 million listeners! What a PERFECT opportunity to build my reach right before "The Life EP" release! The Noisetrade Feature is happening on August 14th and my husband Brett captured some stunning promo photos for it! Can't wait to see what happens when the Feature runs!

Later that night I checked my Noisetrade Fundraiser status & I'd raised $100 in ONE DAY! Not only that but people were texting me & messaging me about how they were connecting to the "Songs for Healing" EP.

Talk about a humbling experience! I hate that I let fear corner me sometimes. I KNOW I'm supposed to dream big for this project, but I let fear tell me otherwise! I forget what The Lord has spoken to me so quick!

To ensure I wouldn't forget anymore, I made a DREAM WALL. My dream wall is there so that in moments of fear and doubt, I can look at what my community says about me, inspirational quotes, song lyrics, pictures, the words I feel like I've gotten from God about this project, My hopes, and my dreams for it. It's amazing to see everyday & gives me courage!

This weekend, Pete King is helping me shoot the "Mom Life" Music Video! I'm hustling this week getting my house cleaned, because we are filming it at my house! It will be a pretty realistic depiction of a "day in the life" of being a momma! I'm so stoked about that. My worlds of being a mom to 2 kiddies and being a musician are colliding!

My friend Ali Gattison, did an amazing job "styling" me in some Lularoe outfits for the Music Video! I had a blast trying everything on & I love how mix & match everything was. Here's a little peek at what she picked out for me, but you'll have to wait to see which one I chose! :)

ONE LAST THING! I'm diving into the world of Email newsletters! I plan on sharing fun life updates and EXCLUSIVE songs & videos with just my "Adventures with Heather newsletter" subscribers! The Journey is about to get exciting, so now is the perfect time to join! If you'd like to join, sign up below!

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Monday, March 13, 2017

Walking toward the Rain.

It's been over a year since I moved to Northern California. 

I am slowly getting more opportunities to share my music again in small ways, building a network & community, but to be honest, it's been hard. 

I'm naturally a dreamer and a doer, and being in a season of not dreaming or doing anything was really tough, but it grew my foundation & root system deeper still. I had to look inward, work on the things in me that needed growth and TRUST that God is the same God that opened doors for me in Ohio & He can do the same for me here. 

I practiced the guitar despite not having somewhere to play it, I sang though no one could hear me, I listened to worship songs, built community around myself, attended my church & soaked in the healing presence of God & I waited patiently in the process. 

I got a picture at my church's small group of me walking through a dry, cracked desert. As I looked ahead of me in the distance I could see a dark cloud and downpour of rain! I fixed my eyes on the rain and walked toward it. I felt like that picture was basically of the place where I feel like I am. It's dry, and nothing is happening yet, but I am walking toward the downpour of the Holy Spirit, abundance, opportunities & I'm preparing on the way so that I'm ready when the downpour comes. 

Person after person has given me similar words. One of my friends saw me as a seed starting to crack open and beginning to grow & that the opportunities would come. Another friend said they saw a bunch of open doors for me & another said my music would move in power in people's lives and heal. Even at my church Jesus Culture's Encounter conference, they played song after song that said things like "We need a fresh outpouring" or "Let it rain" and I just sobbed! It was like God was reassuring me, "the rain is coming. Keep walking toward the Rain, Toward me."

It's such a beautiful thing now when I get even small opportunities. I am SO GRATEFUL for even getting to play an open mic or leading worship at my small group. It's a gift. I used to take it for granted because I had so much going on, now I'm just grateful for every single opportunity! 

So, I'm walking toward the rain, preparing on the way. Enjoying every opportunity to share my music. 

Monday, December 26, 2016

My Grandma Waugh, The Ultimate Role-Model

We just spent a few days in Ohio this past weekend & it was a fun, hard, sad, happy, all the emotions kind of weekend. We got to spend lots of time with Brett's family & we got to spend the afternoon with my Grandma Waugh. 

I wasn't prepared for the time we spent with Grandma. She was fine when she was sitting but every time she insisted to get up to help me find something in the kitchen, she could barely breathe & she was super shaky. She wore a BIG smile on her face to mask her pain, but I could see through it. I told her to stay seated & I got her a sandwich, some Tylenol & 7 up. She kept saying her ribs hurt & I knew something wasn't right. We talked like we always do, about life & what we've been up to. She loved seeing Story & Trust & doted upon them & smiled watching them play. She kept saying how pretty Story is & how handsome & big Trust is. I almost forgot about how breathless she was earlier, until she got up when we had to leave. She could barely walk us to the door & she stood at the window, like she always does & waved as we passed by in the car. She was in pain, but she didn't let it show, but I knew.

I bawled as we left. I felt so nervous to leave her. She was NOT doing well & I called my dad and told him what was going on. I said "dad you gotta call the brothers to get her checked out. She is not doing well." I also told him he needed to come see her.

He called the brothers, they called the squad & they took her to the hospital. To everyone's surprise, they discovered she has a blood clot in her lung, probably had a heart attack & has stage 4 cancer that is an aggressive, rapidly moving cancer all throughout her body. The doctors are amazed she's not in much pain & at her cheerful demeanor, despite what she's going through.  What a STRONG lady.
 They just sent her home from the hospital with hospice to make her more comfortable as she walks this tough road. My dad & mom also flew to Ohio to be with her over Christmas. Really grateful they got to see her. I'm also very grateful she has 4 sons local + grandkids that can check on her & keep her company. Makes it a little easier knowing she has support, even though it's hard not being there for her.

My Grandma Waugh is my ultimate mom/grandma role model. She has taught me SO much about motherhood, life & love over the years. 

I remember her telling me about raising 5 boys that she was the 1st one up & the last one to bed. She made homemade meals & homemade bread everyday. She was also the last one to sit down to eat, making sure everyone was taken care of. 

When I'd ask what it was like to raise 5 ornery boys she said wonderful but admitted that some nights she'd cry, but then she'd get up and do it all over again. I told her I only have 2 kids & I feel like that some times! What an amazing mom she is! Even now that her boys are older she would do anything for them. She's there when they need her to this day. 

She is an amazing Grandmother. 

I have only good, warm, loving memories of going to my Grandma Waugh's house. 

Holidays were magical. She cooked the best meals from scratch, spending hours in the kitchen, BUT if a grandkid came in the kitchen, she'd stop what she was doing & smile & acknowledge us or sneak us some food. Her house was festive & full of joy. 

Nothing was off limits for the Grandkids. We'd play with her jewelry, makeup, she'd put curlers in our hair, we'd roller skate in her basement, she had toys & special books we loved. (she still has some that my kids play with & read!) 

She made us fun treats like homemade popped corn, espresso cups of carnation instant coffee (we felt so grown up & probably why I love coffee to this day), she made the most amazing homemade lasagna, cornbread, beans & fried potatoes. She fed us like kings & queens!

We'd sleep in her giant King sized bed with her & watch Walker Texas Ranger until we'd fall asleep. We also watched Murder She Wrote & Matlock! Probably why I love Murder Mysteries today too.

When I got married, she found out Brett my husband doesn't like cooked vegetables and prepared him a HUGE platter of fresh vegetables just for him to eat! She always made us huge meals when we'd come to visit, including her famous mashed potatoes & magical green beans. Cooking is definitely her love language!

I love talking to Grandma. We talk about the problems in the world & always come back to the basic problem of the break down of the family causing pain in people's lives. It makes sense! She is wise.

She's also always been super independent. From the time my Grandfather died when I was 8 years old, she's lived on her own & done really well, still driving & getting her own groceries & getting around town. Even before we came, though she could hardly walk without gasping for air, she went to the grocery to get us food. That woman!! Stubborn in the best of ways. She rarely asks for help for herself & it was only because I told my dad to have his brothers check on her, that she went to the hospital. 

My Grandma Waugh is love in action. She made soup for me & let me lay on her couch & watch TV many times when I was sick (my doctor was down the street from her house). 

She loves babies!! Playing with them, snuggling them, kissing them, smiling at them, she loves her grand babies so well! 
She came to the hospital when my kids were born, because she had to see her grand babies, she just couldn't wait! I have a precious photo of her adoringly looking at Story, so sweet!
She also let us come over when our AC was out & it was 95 degrees. She fed us all kinds of food & spoiled the kids. She is the best! 

I've never known someone so supportive &  truly interested & invested in knowing about me and my life! She makes me feel so special when I am there! That is such a gift.

Gosh, I could go on and on. My heart aches that she is so sick. It's hard to think about a day I won't be able to call her & tell her about my kids milestones or an adventure we went on or hear about what hallmark show she's been watching or about my uncles & cousins (she always fills me in on everyone!). She's the link that holds all of our family together.  

Tomorrow, my sister, mom & dad and our families are celebrating Christmas together & we are going to make all of Grandma Waugh's recipes & will make them every year to pass on her memory. Her Green Beans, mashed potatoes, homemade rolls, fruit salad & cream pie will always live on through us & I hope to measure up to be even half the woman she is!! 

Love you Grammy Waugh. I love who you are and I am praying for you and with you on this road ahead. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

ADVENTURES W/Heather VLOG - Palomarian Beach 10-10-16

Yesterday was so magical!

My son Trust was off school & my dad was off work, so we decided it was time for an adventure to the beach! My husband surprised us & got off work at the last minute & came with us too!

 We decided to go to one of our favorite secret beaches Palomarian Beach, that you literally have to hike to & slide down a steep incline to get to. Last time we came to this beach we found it by accident looking for a waterfall, but man I am glad we did! There are a bunch of smooth stones & tidepools with sea anemones, urchins, starfish, snails, crabs & all kinds of wild life! The roar of the waves is so loud you have to shout & it lulls your senses & worries of the day. We basked in the warm sun & I found a bunch of treasures along the shore.

I don't know what it is about nature, but it really helps reset my heart & inspires me to get back to the dreams that can lose momentum in the busyness of life. Here in California, life is really lived outdoors & I love it! There is so much to see here & I can't wait to adventure to more places with my family.

Hope you enjoy my cute little VLOG of our day trip!

Friday, October 7, 2016

A Typical day- adventures w/Heather vlog

Sometimes Mom life is a little less than glamorous & sometimes I feel like it's a little less than social media worthy, but this is my life right now & I wanna own it & rock it! These days feel SO long but SO fast at the same time! I know it's just a short season & my kids will be grown up. I know I'll love looking back on what my "typical day" looked like.

If you are rocking mom life right now & feel insignificant, know what you are doing is the most important thing to your kids & family!

Saturday, July 23, 2016

When Can't turns to Can

*Deep Breath* This has happened to me before. 

I've questioned whether I can do music because I have a kid. Now I have TWO kids & I live in a new place where no one knows me, & I left behind lots of friends that do music & it's hard. I find myself asking "should I just quit?" 

Before when I was going through the "I've gotta quit music" faze I cried, I mourned, I felt sorry for myself & wrote a song to get through my grief. 😂 Do you think quitting music worked out for me?! Haha 

No, it didn't! In fact, the "I can't" voice in my head was so loud, I started to get stubborn & wanted to prove it wrong. I wanted to dream again, but I was SCARED. 

Being a stay at home mom is a super high calling & I put a lot of pressure on myself to do well. To me, I felt like doing music was going to be a distraction from the greater work of raising Trust, but that thinking became a road block & a hindrance. I started to separate myself into categories and boxes & decided ok, if it doesn't fit into my mom box, then I can't do it.

Needless to say, this didn't work out for me very well. I started to break down emotionally. I was pouring out myself to the point of almost punishing myself. Do you get what I mean? Like you give your kid all the veggies & you just get the bread, it's all out of love, but you end up getting sick because you aren't getting what you need. Or like how they tell you on an airplane, "put the air mask on yourself first, then help your kids get theirs on." Because if you are dead, you can't help anyone else.

Lightbulb moment! 

Music to me is my veggies, & not to be cheesy, it's my oxygen. It's how I connect with God through singing to Him my worries & concerns or how I engage through worship. It's how I process my day. It's my journal entry, they just turn out as songs! I am NO GOOD to Trust or Story unless I can take care of my heart. I'm a leaky bucket, I can pour myself out so well but need filled up! 

Also, my kids need to see me model doing what my passion is so they can have courage to do their passions one day! To take risks in a way where they say "man, mom really stepped out & trusted God in that thing, & it worked! I can step out too!" 

I saw this happen when I stepped out to make a music video to raise awareness about human trafficking. Trust was 3 & God placed this HUGE burden on my heart for women stuck in Sex Trafficking & a good friend who was a video producer helped me make a $100,000+ music video with the help of a bunch of amazing volunteers, all for free, because they BELIEVED in the cause. They got inspired and ended up taking the project to the next level & made a documentary Short about the realities of sex trafficking in the U.S. 

I guess the biggest lesson I'm learning is to TRUST God in the season He has me in & know He hasn't forgotten me. 

It's easy to feel forgotten as a mom. You put everyone else's needs ahead of your own & at the end of the day you feel so tired & worn out that you're not sure if what you're doing matters or is making an impact. 

I'm not gonna lie, I go all out as a mom. Yummy meals & snacks, activities, fun outings, & a schedule we follow. But... Watching other people's instagram's can make what you are doing seems dumb or less than, even ordinary. It's not a glamorous life.

BUT what if these little lives I'm pouring into are worth every ordinary second. They are learning & growing & changing so fast! It's a long grueling season in some respects, but in other ways it's like a blink!

My son Trust starts kindergarten in a few weeks & I can't believe the amazing little man he is becoming! So sweet, caring and intuitive of people's emotions. He's  Super empathetic. He wants to be a movie Director & Actor one day. What if he becomes a super famous Director that makes world changing movies? We are raising future adults! What an honor! 

I took a step to write down some dreams I have for my music this year. They are smaller dreams but I think it's powerful to write them down & not be scared of them & to ask the Lord SPECIFICALLY what you want. I know my limitations, but with The Lord there are no limitations! I've seen it time & time again & it's fun to watch Him move & open doors!

So dream AND be amazing mommas. We can do both & not lack in either area. Turn that I can't into I can & ask God specifically what you want! He is not scared of your dreams! Let's move some mountains! 

Thursday, July 14, 2016

A New Chapter Starts an Old Ends

These last 8 months have been an INSANE ride! We left all we knew, moved across the country from Columbus, Ohio to Lincoln, California. We KNEW God was calling us, so it was easy in that sense, but losing everything financially, Trusting Him with the day to day needs was HARD, humbling & stressful at times. I can honestly say I've grown more in these last 8 months than ever in my life! It's been really GOOD.

The only way we were able to make this huge move was moving in with my sister Amy, Brother in Law Jesse & my nieces Chloe & Emma. Can I just say, How amazing is that to let your in laws live with you for 8 months & not kill each other?! Hahaha! Amy & Jesse are just like that. Their hearts are huge! -- Oh yeah! In that time, my parents had to move in too, so 10 people in one 6 bedroom house... It was a fun/crazy/funny/stressful adventure! We definitely learned a lot about communication & in many ways, it felt like the 1st year of marriage in the sense you learn about all the ways other people like to do things & it's not the way you do things & it's annoying & a learning process! Hahaha! I learned a lot about myself in that situation too. Communal living is like holding a mirror up to your face, it shows all of your imperfections & areas you need to work on, & man there were a lot! -- Again, aren't my brother in law & sister saints?! They'll probably get a special crown in heaven for letting all of us into their home. 😂 they are amazing!

We knew that living with my sister was a temporary thing, but we weren't sure how we were going to afford moving out. We SUPER SAVED over the next few months. Brett has a well paying job & we were still getting benefits from the state during our transition out of the program & they paid for our groceries (hallelujah!!) so we were able to save that money. Also, during that time, we heard from Brett's old job that Ohio messed up on our taxes for the past like 5 or so years and we'd be getting 3,000+ back! We also got another amazing refund back from taxes we were able to save too. We had some other random money come in & we started the search for a house to buy or rent! Our bank account was BETTER than when we moved here! Miraculous stuff!

 We tried looking into buying, but Brett had to be at his job for at least 6 months, so we didn't qualify yet, so we dove into the renting market.  I went in full blown house search mode & man, places are GONE in like a day here. We had our hearts set on a place, but we didn't qualify, & I was giving up, but then a house right around the corner popped up in the same neighborhood as my sister & we literally walked there to look at it! We decided to go for it, & the rental company already had our applications from another house, so we were able to get it quicker! We moved in 3 weeks later & it's been amazing!
This house is SO nice! The nicest we've lived in & a one-story & pretty baby proofed which is a blessing to me since Story is into EVERYTHING & climbs everything. The backyard is fenced in & has a really nice patio we play on every morning too. I really feel at home here & my parents moved into the master suite so they have their own space & it helps to share the house payment & utilities every month!

We also got 2 cars! We got a used Acura from someone at church & it's in great condition for Brett to run to work & back. We just got a Brand New Kia Soul for me & the kids & I kind of love it! Haha! We're hoping to have it for a long time & maybe pass it on to Trust one day. 😊

A lot has changed right?! Man, I am so grateful to be settling into this new chapter of life. I really feel like California is feeling more like home! Also, I can't believe Trust is starting Kindergarten in a few weeks! So crazy! Time flies with these kiddies, I'm trying to really enjoy it & do fun things! 

There are still some unknowns about this next chapter health wise. I still need to see an endocrinologist about my thyroid & thyroid nodules, but my insurance has to approve it! I am definitely feeling it these days. I am struggling to get up in the morning & no amount of coffee wakes me up & I am so tired I can fall asleep anywhere. It's really hard some days, especially when you're a mom of two & a wife! You can't just stop doing those things! I felt really depressed yesterday. I am so scared I won't ever feel better. I'm worried I'll have to get surgery & have to take meds my whole life or that the nodules are something serious, that the doctor I get wont hear me out like the doctors I've had before. Ugh! When I let my mind go, it can put me in the grave in a heartbeat! Haha! I am trying my best to take every thought captive. But yesterday I forgot! 😄 today has been better. I got out with the kids, because they got up at the crack of dawn, & it's better to just get up & go to keep my momentum going. We had a blast! We went to the Library to play at the park & they ended up have a Big Truck Story time & A pipe truck demonstration! How cool is that?! Trust had a blast & I got to revel in my awesome mom-ness that I got up & out of the house. Haha! I felt like Jesus was encouraging me, that I could do it! I think I can! 

Trust also went through quite an ordeal there for a second, that we honestly don't know what happened. He was throwing up & sick almost every week & I took him to the doctor like 4 times before they finally decided it probably wasn't a stomach virus but something else. Trust Bravely got his blood drawn twice, & the 1st time his ANA test was abnormal which is a flag for possible autoimmune disease or viral Hepatitis A, & his Hep A test came back borderline, which could be cause from the vaccination he JUST got a few weeks before. We have no idea! So we laid low for a while because viral hepatitis A is a virus that affects your liver & it just has to run its course & you are good, as long as their are no complications. We were going to see a gastroenterologist at that point to see if there was anything else going on, but our insurance couldn't get us in! When we got his blood tested again the ANA came back normal & it appeared to be getting better! So we decided to not go to a specialist since his symptoms were better! Still a scary, frustrating ordeal, all this while we were moving! We also had to cancel his birthday party since he was still not feeling well around that time! It was so sad, but we still had a blast celebrating with just our family! I tried to make it extra special for him. 
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What a crazy story God is writing!! I feel like through it all, we are stronger, wiser & better people because of all we've had to face & we have empathy for those in a similar place! Our roots are going deeper in the Lord & relying on HIS strengths & not our own through the most uncertain of times. He's never failed, not once! We know we can make it through anything we face. 💓