I Do

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The definition of marriage is the legally or formally recognized union of two people in a relationship. Two words that jump out to me are union and relationship. Union is the joining of two things into one. When you marry someone, by law you two become one. You make a vow legally before God to become one with that person, taking in every aspect of their life and becoming one.

They say the first year of marriage is always the hardest. That’s because the things you once did as a single you can no longer do. When you’re mad, you can’t just disappear and shelter yourself, you can’t run to your mother or father (sometimes even best friend) to help you fix this. You can’t just push your feelings to the side, or let them build up and blow up on your spouse. I remember the first year of marriage being so challenging in the area of family. My family and I are pretty close and like pretty much every Hispanic family, we roll deep lol! I was always with my sisters, always going to family events, and not to mention the cultural differences Michael and I had.

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I’ll never forget our very first New Year’s Eve celebration as a married couple. I remember thinking to myself “what did I get myself into,” if I can be totally honest. Every year my family goes all out for New Year’s Eve. We would all get together and have a big celebration with delicious Dominican food, Salsa and bachata music playing, people dancing, I mean I could go on about how my family throws down ha! Well Michael grew up celebrating New Year’s Eve very different. He spent it either in church or at home with his family.

It was out first New Year’s Eve celebration as a married couple, we didn’t have church service because at the time my father in law had just started his own church so we didn’t have a building yet. I thought to myself, hey more time to party with my family. Well Michael had other plans. He thought it would be special to celebrate our first New Year’s Eve as a married couple in our Pj’s, drinking some hot chocolate and watching the ball drop in NYC on T.V. Sounds pretty adorable and romantic right? Well I was NOT having it. I remember getting so upset, yelling (not going to lie probably even said a few curse words. Ya’ll this was before Christ delivered me from cursing lol.) I was so accustomed to spending New Year’s Eve with my family partying that I didn’t even take into consideration my new husband and how he wanted to spend OUR first New Year’s Eve.

The bible tells us we are to leave our mother and father and become one with our spouse. (Ephesians 5:31) Michael was fully ready to leave his life as a single man behind and become one with his wife. I remember this being so challenging for me at first because I did everything with family and I had serious FOMO (fear of missing out) when it came to family events. Now I’m not saying I had to just abandon my family and forget about them because I was married now. Not at all, I just had to take into consideration my husband and also tend to his needs and wants. It was so hard for me to just let go of my old life as a single woman and now become one and submit to my now husband.

I know I have written an entire blog post on here on submission so if you want a full length version be sure to check that out. I just want to discuss submission for a few. Ladies, just because you submit to your husband does not mean you become a doormat and does not mean he can use that in an abusive way. My husband and I are one. We are on the same team. I am not below him he is not above me we are on the same row. We are teammates. I submit to my husband because he loves the Lord and because of that it makes it so much easier for me to obey what the bible tells me to do as a wife and that’s to submit to my husband as he submits himself to the Lord. (Ephesians 5:22) I have found that when I spend time with Lord and submit to my husband as he submits onto the Lord, our marriage is truly blessed. Does it mean it’s going to be perfect? Absolutely not, but it makes for a peaceful home when Christ is the center of marriage.

As I come to a close, just remember that you and your spouse (or future spouse for those that are not yet married) are on the same team. Don’t run from your spouse when things get hard. Don’t run back to your single life ways when things get hard. Always keep Christ at the center of your marriage and always pray for your spouse.

Love,

Mrs. Luster

 

 

 

 

Before The Ring

 

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Marriage is something just about every woman dreams about as a little girl; her white wedding dress, her husband, having kids with him one day. All that is cute and all, but the most important time of anyone’s life is while they’re single. Let’s face it, with more than half of Americans getting divorced, there is a real growing problem. Way too many people are rushing to the Alter before truly knowing what commitment they’re about to make and with who.

Before Michael and I were a thing, I had a few characteristics that I thought were really important that my future spouse had to have. I know what you’re probably thinking, Steph didn’t you and Michael meet in high school? Ha, yes! God spoke to me even as a little girl. He told me that I needed to marry someone who loved the Lord and put Him first. My characteristics were: He needed to know and love Jesus Christ, he needed to love and respect his mother (my mother always told me you could tell a lot by how a man treats his mother and sister) and he needed to be a family man. I didn’t want someone who was more worried about what was going on outside of his home rather than inside his home.

This prompted me to ask a friend of mine, who is going through a rough time in her marriage, what five characteristics would she tell a friend to look for in a man. Her answer blew me away. She started off by saying that especially now that she’s dealing with a potential divorce; she knows now more than ever that these 5 characteristics are extremely important (we say potential because at the end of the day we know WHO we serve and I’m praying with her that the Lord restores their marriage.) In the midst of her tough time, she allowed me to share these characteristics to inspire girls to ask themselves what they truly want in a future husband.

  1. A man who puts God first above all. Who will sit and pray with you through every storm in the relationship. (I legit screamed out YASSSSSS when I read this first one. That is THE most important one of all, She legit could have said that and that alone ha!)
  2. A man who focuses on the solution rather than the issue. That’s how you both will outgrow each issue and turn it into an amazing lesson.
  3. Selflessness.
  4. A man who isn’t defined by a woman. Who sees them as a partner and who compliments him. Not someone who is beneath them or less.
  5. A man who truly shows sympathy and empathy through everything. Putting himself in other peoples shoes.

The bible tells us in 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres.”

That is why number one on her list is the absolute most important one. To know the Lord is to Love the Lord, so how can a man properly love you if he does not know the Lord? The bible also tells us to not be unequally yoked. Meaning if his beliefs do not line up with yours sis, run. Run the other way. Don’t settle. Don’t think you can change that man because the truth is, you can’t. Only God can and yes God can, but you shouldn’t run to that alter because you think you’re in love and things will change once you two say I do. If he doesn’t stand for God, he will fall for anything.

Lets not forget to look at ourselves as well. Ask yourself this; of those five characteristics you want in a man/woman, do you see any of those in yourself? Do you know and love the Lord with all your heart? Do you put the Lord first before anything else? In your singleness, instead of putting so much time and effort on trying to figure out when you’re going to meet your future spouse, lets focus on being prepared when the Lord does bring them into your life.

Ladies, the bible tells us “He who finds a wife, finds a good thing,” He, not she. So we should be focusing on building our relationship with Christ so that we can be the woman that God has called us to be and the wife that God has called us to be. Life is not all about getting married. It’s about serving the Lord and finding out our purpose He has designed for us.

So for my single ladies, have a date night with the Lord. Sit before Him, worship Him, talk and pray with Him, and let Him lead your path. I’m a strong believer in speaking things into existence. If the Lord places marriage specifically on your heart, start a prayer journal and write to your future husband. Pray to God that your future husband knows and serves the Lord. Write it down and watch God make it happen.

 

Love,

Mrs. Luster

 

 

Aria turns ONE!

 

Wow. It’s all I can really say. It seems as if I blinked and my baby girl is one. It’s true when people say that kids grow up really fast. Seems like just yesterday my baby girl was moving around in my stomach and now she’s sassy as can be and just the center of our world. It never gets old looking at her and thinking, God, you really did it, you blessed me with me most amazing gift ever, a beautiful baby girl that I can call my own.

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This year has been by far the best year of my life. Aria has taught me so much about myself as a woman, a mother, and even a wife. Seeing my husband with her and how patient and loving and kind he is just makes me fall in love with him even more. I should be asleep right now, but I’m lying in bed, writing my thoughts, staring at both of my babies sleep, Hubby and Aria.

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The day I gave birth to Aria I felt this sense of peace like no other, it was as if Jesus himself was in the room. I have never felt peace like that ever before. I wasn’t nervous, I wasn’t scared, I just knew that the Lord was with me and he prepared me for this day my whole life. In that moment I knew my purpose, I knew I was born to be a mother. I knew that this little bundle of joy was about to take over my life in the best way possible and I was so ready for it.

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The journey to motherhood was no easy task and labor proved to be another obstacle. I wanted so badly to do an all natural birth (as in no drugs whatsoever), but the pain was way too much. After 4 hours of intense contractions, (that were coming less than a minute apart…OUCH) I had enough. I like to think I have a high pain tolerance, (I mean I got all four of my wisdom teeth taken out and I didn’t take one single pain pill), But I remember thinking to myself, I’m not going against what the Lord specifically made to be painful. So I got an epidural. Was it painful you ask? At that point, I couldn’t feel any more pain than what I was already feeling so to be honest I don’t even remember the epidural process.

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I was in labor for 21 hours. The last 4 hours were the most intense. Each time I had a contraction, Aria’s blood pressure would drop very low. This went on for a few hours and each time it happened I felt like the world stopped and I couldn’t breathe thinking about if something might happen to my baby. But I had one amazing hospital staff to back my amazing doctor and me up. He knew I wanted so badly to deliver vaginally. He was patient and made sure baby girl was doing great. Then I got stuck at 8 CM. I had to be at a full 10 CM to start pushing. I just remember the doctor saying “Okay Steph I’m going to come back in about an hour. If you’re still not fully dilated, I’m sorry we’re going to have to discuss a C-section.” Something inside me refused to accept that so I called my family in and we all started praying. An hour later the doctor checked me and I was at a full 10! Time to start pushing. The song that was playing as baby girl was being born was a song by Kari Jobe called “Speak to me”. It was so fitting. I felt the Lord speaking to me the entire time. It was a healing moment from all the pain I had endured. The miscarriages, the heartaches, it was as if God said, “It is finished,” I now had my beautiful blessing, my promise from God, my rainbow after the storm.

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So I say all this to encourage someone that may be going through a tough time. God is with you. Even when it doesn’t feel like it, He’s always there and there is always a purpose. May the Lord continue to bless you.

 

Love,

Mommy Luster

Our Pregnancy Journey: From Loss to Answered Prayer

 

“For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper you not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

Hi Guys! We’re back with a new video! As many of you know Michael and I struggled to have a baby for two years. We went through several losses and I went through a period of anxiety and depression. But GOD…….has answered our prayer and we finally got our little miracle.

We wanted to make a video to help encourage any other couples that may be dealing loss and fertility. We hope this video encourages you!

Love,

Mrs. Luster

5 Things I’ve Learned as A New Mom

 

 

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Life has been going literally non-stop. I always heard being a mom was a full-time job, but to be honest I didn’t quite understand what that meant. I figured, “how hard can it really be?” Ha! I applaud each and every single one of you mamas! I think back on my pre-baby self and how I would complain about being busy and tired and I just literally laugh now. My mom used to always say, “Mija, wait until you become a mother. You don’t know anything about being tired just yet.”

But….

Enough about that, my baby girl is my entire world and I would give my life for her. It’s a love like no other. I can’t even begin to describe. Being a mom is truly a selfless job. It doesn’t matter how tired I am, how crazy my life may seem at the moment, she literally makes it all worth it. She gives me that drive that I never knew I had and I would do it all over again (3 times to be exact ha! I want three babies so hubby needs to get used to that lol!)

In honor of Mother’s day and me being a new mom, I decided to put together a list of 5 things I have learned as a new mom.

  • Never compare your self to other moms! Sounds easy right? Well I would often find my self comparing myself to other moms and questioning if I’m doing this thing right. It’s true what they say, not all babies are the same, and hey not all moms are the same either. I chose to breastfeed, but trust me I know how incredibly hard it is to breastfeed and some mamas either just can’t produce enough, or they just have an awful experience. And you know what? That’s OKAY! You know your body and baby best, so do what is best for you and your baby. I can’t stand to see other mamas shaming each other on if they breastfeed or not, give formula, or if they let their babies sleep with them. I’m a part of several mom groups on Facebook and I literally have to hide posts so they won’t pop up on my news feed because every day there’s a mom asking if she’s doing something right and literally every mama has their OWN opinion. Geeze. Just because it worked for you and your baby, doesn’t mean it’s going to work for theirs or mine.
  • Take it one day at a time. Can I be completely honest? There are days where I feel completely overwhelmed. Like my house is a mess, I haven’t showered, Aria is LiiiiiiiT (as always haha) and I feel like my to do list just keeps growing and growing. But then I have to stop and take a deep breath and remember life is so much more than just worrying all the time. So what if my house is a mess, I’ll get to it when I can. So what if my to do list seems like it will never end. As long as I’m healthy, my baby is healthy, my hubby is healthy, we have food and shelter….all is well with my soul!
  • Your body won’t snapback overnight! About a month ago I literally had a melt down over how I hated the way my body looked. Breastfeeding has caused me to loose a ton of weight and made me so self-conscious. My hubby of course being the amazing man he is, wiped my tears and literally said, “You are so beautiful to me and that’s all that should matter to you, I’m not going anywhere. I married YOU, not your body.” Like can we take a moment and just…sigh* Thank God for my amazing hubby! I literally had to suck up those tears and embrace my new body. This body carried a human being for 9 months! An 8 pound baby to be exact ha! And mind you, I only weighed 108 pounds before getting pregnant! I’m a petite thang!
  • Enjoy every moment. I heard moms telling me that while I was still pregnant. One mom put it best. “Enjoy every single stage with Aria, even the newborn sleepless nights because one day you’ll blink and she’ll be all grown up.” Like I want to ball my eyes out right now because that’s legit how I feel. It literally feels like I had her just yesterday. They really do grow way too fast! So each stage that she’s in I try to not rush it and enjoy it. Especially breastfeeding. Gahhhhhh it is such a powerful bond. As tired as I am of getting up in the middle of the night (sometimes twice) to pump her milk, I know this chapter will come to an end so I’m enjoying every moment.
  • You’re a great mother! If we’re all honest with ourselves, we all go through moments where we feel like we’re not good enough. Like we feel like we’re failing our kids. I’ve had dramatic moments where I feel like I’m not good enough. Honey the devil is a liar!!!!! You ARE an amazing momma. On days where I feel like this, it’s as if Aria knows and she just looks up at me and gives me the biggest smile, laugh, and says “mama” and legit nothing else matters in that moment! In her eyes, I’m the best thing ever and that’s enough for me.

 

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Love,

Mommy Luster

Motherhood is Heaven on Earth!

Motherhood is a feeling I can’t even begin to describe. It’s the most amazing feeling in the world. It literally feels like heaven on earth. I can’t help but think of God’s love for us. If this is just a glimpse of what the Lord’s love is like then I can’t even imagine the full amount of love He has for us. It’s true what they say, you forget about all the pain once you first lay eyes on your precious baby. Although the journey to motherhood was hard, I’d do it all over and over again just to have her! What’s even more amazing and just another way God proved his hand was all over this, Aria was born on hubby’s late grandmothers birthday. Which is also the inspiration behind her middle name. His late grandmother Marie was the definition of a praying woman. Every time he talks about her or my father in love talks about her it was always about her outrageous faith. I didn’t get the chance to meet her but would have loved to! Aria was prayed for like crazy by everyone and it’s only right that her middle name be Marie. When she was born on the same day as her late great-grandmother, it just confirmed what we always knew. God had this in His plans all along. Thank you so much Lord! And thank you Marie for watching over your great grand baby and for covering her with prayers even before you even knew she would exist one day.

My sister Sabrina created this amazing video of the birth of our beautiful daughter Aria. Enjoy and don’t forget to subscribe to her channel!

My Other sister Samantha took these amazing photos of me and baby girl while in the hospital and she took my labor pics! If you wants pictures done by her, visit her FB or instagram @saflanthaphotography

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Love,

Mommy Luster

Baby Girl’s Nursery

We are SOOOOOO ready to meet our princess. On this incredible journey to parenthood though we’ve learned that everything is all in God’s timing and we need to be patient. (But if she comes now that would totally make our day, just saying lol)

Way before finding out we were pregnant, I pretty much had her room planned out lol! I knew her room would be totally girly and I just love the way it came out!


We had so much help from our loved ones in helping to decorate her room! Hubby and my father in love built her crib, rocking chair, changing table, and hung everything up for us.

My mother in love was the master mind behind the decor and where exactly to place everything.

My mom, sisters, and sister in love helped me organize everything in baby girls room (and my sister in love made this beautiful sign for baby girls room.)


This picture could not have fit more perfectly into her room. She is definitely worth the wait! Although I would never want to go through what I went through, it brought me to her! I love my baby girl soooo much already. She’s going to get annoyed with me because I’m going to shower her with daily kisses. 🙂


Hope y’all liked her room as much as we did! Thanks for all the love & support you all have given us! It’s definitely helped us in the most difficult times.

Love,

Mrs. Luster