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TFP Summer Tunes Playlist

Posted in Lifestyle, music, summer
on July 20, 2016

We all love some good, upbeat music, but there is just something about summertime that makes our favorite sunny season tunes that much sweeter. In the spirit of all things fun, summery and carefree, our TFP writers weighed in on what they’ve been jamming to in their cars (and #letsbehonest… probably singing into their hairbrushes while running late for work) throughout these more-than-warm July days, and they’re too good to keep to ourselves. Whether you need the perfect playlist to wake you up on your morning run, or you’re looking for some toe-tappin’ tunes for your next cookout, these tracks are sure to give you that taking-the-backroads-to-the-beach-with-the-windows-down kinda feeling no matter where you are. So fire up Spotify, and follow TFP’s Summer Tunes playlist!

What are you listening to this summer? Share those good grooves with us by letting us know your favorite songs in the comment section below!

Beach Bag Essentials

Posted in danielle, Lifestyle, summer
on June 24, 2016

Working on your summer beach bag? Check out my must-haves below! (Everything colored yellow is a link to find exactly what I am talking about!)


Cute Towel – We all need a towel for the beach so it might as well be cute! I love a good monogram, and etsy has some great options. And round beach towels are a super fun trend right now as well!
Towel Clips – These clips hold your towel up on your chair so it won’t fall down when you’re sitting up. (#whydidntithinkofthat??) Or you can get these towel bandanas that hold your towels up as well and comes in lots of colors and patterns!
Coconut Oil – I think by now we all know the countless benefits of coconut oil, but did you know it also serves as an all-natural sunscreen? Coconut Oil has (approximately) SPF 8 and will moisturize your skin while protecting it from the sun’s harsh rays, so lather up!
Wet Brush – This thing is a lifesaver! As much as I wish I was one of those people who has that “perfectly messy beach hair”…this is not the case for me. I just usually end up looking like a beach troll who doesn’t own a hairbrush. So, to remedy my hair woes, a wet brush is a must in my beach bag. As a matter of fact, I don’t just use this brush at the beach, I use it every single day after the shower. This brush is made to gently comb through and detangle wet hair (and comes in tons of cute colors and prints..and even travel size). It’s a beach day must!
Hat – We all know it is best to keep our faces protected from the sun. There are countless options for shading your face, but when I hit the sand, I generally switch back and forth between a floppy beach hat (this one is on sale!) or like this one that you can customize to say what you want (like “Hello Sunshine” or “Do Not Disturb”!), fedora, and a cute baseball cap (like this one, this one, or this one).
Moisturizer & Lip Balm  – While coconut oil works great for some sun exposure, some beach days call for a little more SPF. You could try one of these two top rated moisturizers here and here. Or another favorite of mine is Aveeno’s Face Moisturizer with SPF 30 (or if you want it tinted, get this version).
While it’s obvious we need to shield our faces and bodies from the intense summer sun, but we often forget that our lips can get sunburned, too! My absolute favorite balm with spf is the Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment with SPF 15 (it comes in many colors, but my favorite is plum!).
Glass Water Bottle – More and more, researchers are finding plastics with BPA & BPS can lead to serious health effects. (Just google it if you’re interested.) Grab a glass water bottle (this one is gorgeous!) and stick it in a cute sand cup holder  because, #letsbehonest, nobody wants to drink hot plastic.
Face Spray – I am warning you, use this stuff once and you will feel as if you need it forever. You can find a great face spray here, or just make your own by mixing filtered water with coconut water or rose water and your favorite essential oil! Put it in your own little spray bottle and voila!
A Good Book – This one seems like a no brainer, but if it’s not on my packing list, I will most likely forget it. Give me the latest Southern Living magazine and a good book, and I’ll be set all day! Check out TFP’s Top 4 Summer Reads to find your next beach read!
Journal – One of the few times I slow down enough to allow my thoughts to wander is on vacation. So, if you’re like me and like to get everything out on paper, take a journal and jot down your thoughts, any Scriptures and prayers that come to mind, and to-do’s that you can tackle later. As much as your body needs to physically stretch out and rest, so does your mind. Allow yourself to take that time!
One last tip: don’t be so quick to take your headphones to the beach. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that as much as God has blessed us with the visual beauty of this world, He has also blessed us with audible beauty. The thunder of the crashing waves, a flowing mountain stream, a family laughing in the distance, and even the voice and laughter of your loved ones are all audible blessings of beauty. Before you stick your headphones in and to drown out everything around you, take a few moments to allow the peaceful beauty of your surroundings to calm your spirit and remind you of the undeserved blessings we are completely engulfed in as children of God.
So what are your beach bag essentials? Leave a comment below and let us know!



Last Minute Gift Wrappin’

Posted in alli, Christmas, Lifestyle
on December 23, 2015

We’re a dime a dozen — last-minute Christmas gift wrappers. I admit that I’m guilty sometimes. But I come by it honestly, my momma is a last minute Christmas gift wrapper, too. I think it’s genetic. Growing up, she would do all her shopping a few days before Christmas, and then she would make me help her wrap all the gifts on Christmas Eve. I secretly loved it. To this day, I still love wrapping gifts. The only thing that has changed since then is that I now try to plan ahead so all my gifts are personalized and coordinated. Unfortunately, I feel especially behind this year. Maybe it’s because I haven’t felt too Christmasy in Tennessee’s not-so-Christmassy, 70-degree weather. Because of this unseasonal mood killer, I found myself sitting in the living room, two days before Christmas, brainstorming ways to create pretty wrapping to make my gifts look extra special. So after a little self pep talk, a quick trip to the store and a few hours of cutting and taping, I am feeling super giddy about how cute my gifts turned out, and I thought I’d share with you!

First, I gathered the essentials from two of my favorite places—the dollar section at Target and The Dollar Tree. (I’m on a budget, y’all.) I knew I wanted all my wrapping to look “home-made” and similar in theme, but I also wanted each gift to have its own unique twist, so I decided to purchase kraft, black, and white paper. I also purchased gold, white and black pens with a large variety of ribbons.

With my first design, I started with the kraft paper and drew black pine needle branches all over. I added thin twine and an actual pine needle branch that I saved from when we trimmed our Christmas tree.

With this particular design, you could stop there to save time OR you could add a little gingham print ribbon to fancy it up. This particular gift is being shipped to LA, so fancy, it is!

Using the black wrapping paper, I wrote “joy” (one of my favorite words and one that embodies this sweet and holy season) with my gold pen. Using gold or white on the black wrapping paper looks stunning, by the way. This gift is for a fabulously sassy 15-year-old so I added a fun red, yarn pom-pom. These are extremely easy and inexpensive to make and is a great substitute for your standard bow. I used this tutorial to learn how to make them.

Isn’t it crazy how using corresponding colors and patterns can quickly make your Christmas gifts feel special and well thought out instead of just “thrown-together”?

Of course each gift doesn’t have to be wrapped differently, but something that may spark some extra creativity is tailoring the wrapping design to include the recipient’s favorite color, hobby or personal style. Keep in mind that gift wrapping is something you can have fun and be creative with – there really are no rules! Each gift has the potential to be a work of art, a personalized creation that can make your loved ones smile before they even see what’s inside!

Happy Wrapping!

Presents with a Purpose

Posted in Christmas, danielle, Lifestyle
on December 16, 2015

“Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’ Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.'” Matthew 25:34-40

This is the season of gift giving, and everyone comes to family gatherings prepared to give and receive. It is fun seeing your nephew’s face light up when he opens the new video game you gave him. And who wouldn’t love getting that cute pair of boots you have been eyeing but never would buy for yourself?
But have you ever desired to give (or get) a more meaningful gift? The type of gift that won’t be lost or forgotten by February — a gift that is significant. A gift that proclaims the reason and purpose of Christmas. Maybe I am old fashioned, but that sounds like what gifting at Christmas was always intended to be.
I struggle to remember that expensive does not always equal meaningful, and one Christmas gift from years ago always reminds me just how significant small gifts can really be.
As I opened a gift box wrapped from my parents on Christmas Eve, I found a blue paper gift certificate. Thinking it would be a gift for a day at the spa or a clue for a scavenger hunt to find my real gift (my prankster mother loves to make it hard on us), instead I found writing that said, “Because of the donation in your name, a child in Haiti will be able to attend school for an entire year.”
I had more than I needed, and a little girl was able to go to school (a privilege and luxury in her culture), and have hope for a future without poverty because of a simple and small donation that my parents made in my name. It was humbling and thrilling and one of the best gifts I have ever received.
As Christians in a first-world society, it is easy to get caught up in the materialism of Christmas. (Black Thursday, anyone?) While all of us can certainly appreciate gift cards to The Cheesecake Factory, it is nice to know that we can choose to go a little deeper with our gifting.
So if you are looking for something a little different, more Christ-centered, or meaningful this Christmas, let’s not forget those that Jesus called “the least of these” — the poor, the hurting, the widowed, and the orphan. Let’s remember that even buying Christmas gifts can be an act of worship. Let’s not forget those closest to the heart of God, and that when we give to one of these, we give directly to Jesus Himself.
With that in mind, TFP has teamed up with One Vision International, a mission organization based in Knoxville, TN, to create a unique way to give the love of Christ in a practical, yet beautiful, way this Christmas. (To check out the amazing work of OVI and all about their mission here.)
OVI put together a list of gifts you can give in the name of the loved one you are shopping for. For example, $40 can pay for a woman from the Dominican Republic to get the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to attend a women’s conference. A gift of $50 can provide clean water for a family in Brazil. Even a gift of $5 or $10 can contribute to the most needed items, like medical supplies in natural disasters (similar to the 2010 earthquake in Haiti), basic everyday needs, or even a plane ticket for a sick child to visit a hospital. No amount of money goes to waste — and the money goes much farther than you could imagine.
By giving to those who have less, you are not only meeting a physical need but also a spiritual need by offering hope. What an honor it is for your loved one whose gift is a chance to be used by God to bless someone else in some of the farthest and seemingly forgotten corners of the earth.
Interested in giving a gift like this? Download this gift certificate to present to your loved one(s), and fill out this form to mail in your donation!
Also, if you prefer a more “tangible” gift and are in the Knoxville area, head over to One Vision’s office (you can find them here) to shop through its sale (December 16 & 17 9am-5pm) of handmade Christmas ornaments from women in the Dominican Republic, aprons, crocheted items, and vi Bella jewelry, scarves, and ornaments made from women around the world.
So if you are looking for something a little different to give this year, remember you have an opportunity to give a gift that, regardless of your finances, will bless someone daily and eternally. May Jesus be glorified in every part of Christmas, including how we give.

Merry Christmas!

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matthew 6:19-21

*photos courtesy of One Vision International

I’m a Survivor

Posted in Christmas, julianne, Lifestyle
on November 11, 2015


I apologize now for any of you who think this post has any Beyonce reference. It doesn’t. Instead, I’m releasing my inner television nerd to you. It’s a part of that whole authenticity thing I told you we were going to explore.
I love Survivor. I like to think I could “Outwit, Outlast, and Outplay” everyone. My husband agrees that I might be able to, but I also hate seafood which seems problematic. If you don’t watch, you don’t know that this season (which is season like 45,009) is called “Second Chance”. They had the audience vote on who to bring back from previous seasons to compete against each other. The whole premise has honed in on what they are going to do differently this season based on what got them in trouble last go-around. It’s been interesting because many of them have settled into a game plan that is “care less about the game and more about building relationships”.
Some seasons of our lives feel like we’re just surviving. And the holiday season seems to take survival skills no person really has. For many of us, it’s a season of managing hectic schedules, cooking until your fingerprints burn off, organizing gifts like a boss, and navigating complicated family situations. Now, some of you are veterans and have your traditions down to a science. For those of us that still feel like we struggle to keep our heads above water, let me offer some quick tips on surviving the holidays while hosting people in your home, attending parties and spending time with family:
Just get organized. Take one hour in the next few days, and do the following:
– Start a calendar of dates and places that you have things to do.
– Build a budget for gifts, decor and meals/treats you will be cooking. Stick to it.
– Begin a Christmas list on Pinterest. You can make a secret board and pick out gifts for everyone to keep yourself organized. Once you’ve bought it, delete the pin!
– Buy a Christmas journal. Pray through this season for things other than yourself. Keep it for next season. Tape Christmas cards into it that you receive this year, and pray for each of those families.
Rest in a dwelling place like no other. First and foremost, this is supposed to be fun, y’all! Let us not forget that things can get wild, but we have the joy and privilege of celebrating the birth of our Savior in the upcoming weeks. As cheesy as it sounds, if you don’t remember the reason for the season, you ain’t gonna survive. Don’t let the ruler of this world feed you lies that perfection is the goal. You will be tempted to believe that your presents need to be better, you food has to be gourmet, your decorations matter and your party dress has to be a show-stopper. They don’t. Rest in the dwelling place that the Lord provides that is by STILL waters. Slow down at least once daily during this season with a cup of white chocolate hot cocoa, fuzzy socks and some good time with your Lord.
Journal what you love about the holidays. Before they even begin, show your appreciation and thanksgiving to the Lord for giving us a season of cuddles, family time and carols. Recognizing what you love ahead of time will help you focus on those things during this season and not get bogged down with the “have-to-dos” that will approach.
Care less about the game and more about the relationships. Take a page out of the ole Survivor book, and run with it. If you’re like me, you have about 14 sides to the family that you have to sort through schedules to find time to see during the holidays. Whether it’s a divorced family or planning around in-laws or whatever that keeps your schedule busy, remember that your relationships matter. Jesus spent the first Christmas with His family. It wasn’t just Mary, they were all there. This is a season of peace and joy and love. Focus on that. Find a way to mend relationships, have uncomfortable conversations, and combine schedules in order to fit the people you love in, no matter the circumstance. It’s not about the game. Stop making excuses for not seeing certain people, and make this the best holiday season yet.
Remember whose birthday it is. I realize we still have Thanksgiving to go. Trust me, I didn’t forget. I may have indulged in a red Starbucks cup and have Dave Barnes Christmas albums already on repeat, but I love Thanksgiving and would never forget about it. But I think that the timing of Thanksgiving is impeccable. It give us time to reflect on what we love, appreciate, and are humbly blessed by before we celebrate Jesus’s birth. As you start picking out gifts (for others and yourself), find a way to serve those around you as a gift to Him. Volunteer at a homeless shelter, buy Christmas presents? for a family in need or even ask people to give to an orphanage overseas instead of giving you gifts. Celebrate the One who gave the ultimate gift by loving that which is most precious to Him — people.
In a day and age when everyone’s edited and perfected posts fill our feeds with the thought that our lives or holidays or family don’t measure up, let us lift our eyes to see real Perfection. I know surviving for me this holiday season will also include guarding against comparison and living in the present even amidst the presents. My prayer is that my holiday identity isn’t found in surviving by the world’s standards but thriving and striving to live authentically.
I don’t want my confessions of those struggles mentioned above to be considered authenticity. Those things are sin. Authenticity doesn’t excuse sin. Authenticity points people to a greater reality that is found in the arms of Jesus. I pray 2 Corinthians 1:12 for this holiday season.
“For our boast is this, the testimony of our conscience, that we behaved in the world with simplicity and godly sincerity, not by earthly wisdom but by the grace of God, and supremely so toward you.” (ESV)
May our holidays be hosted with simplicity and godly sincerity.

Interview with Ashton Bayne: Dishing on Life as a NASCAR wife, marriage, faith and more!

Posted in Guest Interviews, Lifestyle
on September 25, 2015
NASCAR's Trevor Bayne's wife Ashton Interview | The Pineapple Porch
Interview with Trevor Bayne's Wife, Ashton | The Pineapple Porch

In 2011, a beautiful little blonde with a contagiously sweet smile watched Trevor Bayne become the youngest person ever to win the NASCAR’s Daytona 500. Now all of America knew his name, and life was about to change big time for Trevor… and Ashton.

Fast forward four years — Ashton has been married to Trevor for over two years and is expecting their first child! She was kind enough to take a few minutes from her crazy schedule to chat about life in the spotlight, preparing for motherhood and staying on track with Jesus through it all.


Hi Ashton, thanks for spending time with us here at The Pineapple Porch!

Hi! Thanks for having me.


How did you meet your husband, Trevor? (We all love a good love story.)

Trevor & I met our sophomore year of high school. We had Algebra 2 class together, and he had a major crush. (Yes, even he will agree.) I made him chase me pretty hard for a while. We didn’t start dating until my freshman year of college…poor guy!


Do you get to travel with him?

I pretty much go everywhere he goes unless something comes up back home (weddings, showers, things like that). Everyone keeps saying how different it will be when our baby girl arrives and me not traveling. Trevor is always quick to let them know we’ll still be on the road with him!


What has been the toughest thing about having a husband in the spotlight?

The toughest thing is that our life is so far from “normal”. I can count on my two hands the number of times we have been in one place for longer than a week since we got married nearly two and a half years ago. There are lots of perks that come with this lifestyle, but it is hard being on the go all the time.


What kind of worldly pressures do you face as a wife? How do you deal with them?

I think for me the biggest worldly pressure I face is just being content with who I am. It is so easy in our society for ladies to look at other girls around them and play the comparison game. It is so unhealthy and unwise, but sadly, I think most of us can agree we tend to do it. So, it’s so important to just be me, to remember that my husband loves me how I am, and there’s no need to pretend or mold myself to look like others around me. Psalm 139:14 says, “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” What a beautiful reminder that the Lord loves me as I am and created me to be me.


How do you find community and time to stay in the Word in the midst of a crazy schedule?

We are gone pretty much every weekend, and because Trevor’s races are on Sundays, we don’t get to attend church like we so wish we could. We do have chapel services at the track on Sunday mornings which we love. However, when we first got married and I moved to be with Trevor, I really struggled with finding community. So I began to pray and beg the Lord to send me friends. And He, as always, was so faithful and heard my cries. I now have such a beautiful group of ladies that I get to do life with. We meet on Monday mornings for Bible study, and all of them are wives of racers or someone in racing so we get to travel together on the weekends, too. It makes such a huge difference to have friends at the track. Those ladies are such a blessing in my life.


Congratulations on your pregnancy! How did you tell your husband?

Thank you!! We are so excited. She’s going to be here before we know it. I called Trevor super early one morning while he was away at a NASCAR test and woke him up at the crack of dawn. I said, “Babe…we are having a baby.” Poor guy was so out of it, half asleep still. I just couldn’t wait to tell him. Looking back I wish I could’ve held it in long enough to tell him in person but two seconds after I read “positive” I was already dialing his number. I’m so impatient!


What are you learning through your pregnancy? Do you have any excitements or fears?

I am learning to rest! I never realized how much I am on the go and on my feet until this little nugget starting growing inside. Shoo! I have lots of excitements. We can’t wait to have her here with us, to dress her up in all her cute clothes & bows. And fears, oh there’s plenty of those, too. I’m just too busy trying to get her nursery ready to even think about them right now!


What is the Lord teaching you in this season?

My prayer life has changed a lot. I feel like our world is getting crazier and crazier by the day and to think about raising a child in this society is completely overwhelming. So I pray a lot for Ellie Kate. Ellie means “light” and Kate means “pure”, so I pray this prayer over her daily — that she would be a light in a place and remain pure in a world that is not.


Is there a certain Scripture in the Bible that has resonated with you throughout your life?

Romans 12:1-2, “Therefore I urge you brothers and sisters, in the view of God’s mercies to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to Him- For this is true worship. Do not conform to the patterns of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what the Lord’s will is- His good, pleasing, and perfect will.” I am constantly reminding myself of this verse. To not conform. To be set apart. To love Jesus, not just with my words but with my actions and attitude.


Finally, if you had one thing to share with other sisters in Christ, what would it be?

The Lord loves you. He thinks you are beautiful and enough. There’s no need to try to be like the rest of them because you have a purpose just as you are. You are treasured, fought for, loved, and sought after.


Just for kicks: Does Trevor ever get road rage on the interstate?! (I mean, he did win the Daytona 500 after all!) 

Funny that you ask… 90% of the time on our way to the airport after the races, we are fighting because I think he is driving too fast. His excuse: “I’ve been driving a race car for three hours. This is nothing.”


That is so funny! Thank you so much for hanging out with us and sharing your heart! Now we have a fun segment. Here we go! 

NASCAR wife, Ashton Bayne Interview | The Pineapple Porch
*To pick up a few of Ashton’s favorite things, click here: Mark of the Lion Series | For the Love | Bethel Music
Did you like this interview? Check out more of our guest interview here!