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stefanie.rouse

Stefanie✧ Lifestyle Blogger You Are Loved Beyond Measure ✞ 📍L.A. w/ my ♡ Caleb & pup🍯🐻 Faith, Beauty, Fashion, Travel, Photography ✉︎[email protected] ☆New Vlog! 🚨 ⇊ https://youtu.be/eN_rxQ0mu6E
879 posts
146.24k followers
437 following
stefanie.rouse

@stefanie.rouse

Stefanie✧ Lifestyle Blogger
🚨🚨RAW POST ALERT🚨🚨 “When things don’t go your way,” was the title of our last video we just put out talking about our wild weekend in Mammoth, CA. The message was that in the midst of things that are hard, to choose joy and know that God is in control.
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Ever since we put that video out, it’s felt as if everything in our life has tested our resilience to choose joy. ✨Big and little things happening to overwhelm us. The funeral this past weekend of someone dear, our Momma Kay in the hospital, Papa John’s heart surgery several weeks ago, my dear Aunt Dee’s death, injuring my foot yesterday and then other little things pilling up. It seemed like a waterfall of worry, frustration, sorrow, and pain was pouring out over us. Like we were drowning.
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We both felt like we were failing. Because it can be so hard to choose joy. 🌾It’s been a battle for us for sure. But just like building muscle isn’t easy, and is very painful, working on a new way of thinking isn’t easy either. 
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So I’m reminding myself and I encourage you, let’s choose joy. 🌷To reframe our situations as much as possible. And to also know that it’s ok to not be ok sometimes. Choosing joy doesn’t mean we’re naïve to hardships & sorrow of those around us. I think it means choosing forgiveness, choosing to become better from it and not bitter, choosing to see things from a bigger perspective.
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I’m giving myself permission to not be perfect in the process. 💕But I’m learning and growing. “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.”
James 1:2-3
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Do you ever struggle to feel like you have to be perfect in the process? 🌟Love hearing from you!
70 1,874 11 hours ago
🚨🚨raw post alert🚨🚨 “when things don’t go your way,” was the title of our last video we just put out talking about our wild weekend in mammoth, ca. the message was that in the midst of things that are hard, to choose joy and know that god is in control.
__
ever since we put that video out, it’s felt as if everything in our life has tested our resilience to choose joy. ✨big and little things happening to overwhelm us. the funeral this past weekend of someone dear, our momma kay in the hospital, papa john’s heart surgery several weeks ago, my dear aunt dee’s death, injuring my foot yesterday and then other little things pilling up. it seemed like a waterfall of worry, frustration, sorrow, and pain was pouring out over us. like we were drowning.
__
we both felt like we were failing. because it can be so hard to choose joy. 🌾it’s been a battle for us for sure. but just like building muscle isn’t easy, and is very painful, working on a new way of thinking isn’t easy either.
__
so i’m reminding myself and i encourage you, let’s choose joy. 🌷to reframe our situations as much as possible. and to also know that it’s ok to not be ok sometimes. choosing joy doesn’t mean we’re naïve to hardships & sorrow of those around us. i think it means choosing forgiveness, choosing to become better from it and not bitter, choosing to see things from a bigger perspective.
__
i’m giving myself permission to not be perfect in the process. 💕but i’m learning and growing. “consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.”
james 1:2-3
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do you ever struggle to feel like you have to be perfect in the process? 🌟love hearing from you!
stefanie.rouse

@stefanie.rouse

Stefanie✧ Lifestyle Blogger
Have you tried Kombucha? This is something that I drink almost everyday and so many people ask me about it. My very favorite kind is @healthade and my favorite flavor is pink lady apple #partner . 
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It makes me feel energized, helps my gut feel healthy and has been such a blessing to me with stomach & health issues I’ve faced. 
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Health Aid is full of probiotics and healthy acids, is organic, vegan, raw, gluten free is flavored with organic cold pressed juice and superfoods. I LOVE the taste. #FollowYourGut and #FavoriteHealthAde. Super grateful I’ve found this drink! Have you tried Health Aid kombucha yet?
199 3,467 2 days ago
Have you tried kombucha? this is something that i drink almost everyday and so many people ask me about it. my very favorite kind is @healthade and my favorite flavor is pink lady apple #partner .
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it makes me feel energized, helps my gut feel healthy and has been such a blessing to me with stomach & health issues i’ve faced.
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health aid is full of probiotics and healthy acids, is organic, vegan, raw, gluten free is flavored with organic cold pressed juice and superfoods. i love the taste. #followyourgut and #favoritehealthade. super grateful i’ve found this drink! have you tried health aid kombucha yet?
stefanie.rouse

@stefanie.rouse

Stefanie✧ Lifestyle Blogger
🌟$100 gift card (your choice🎉Sephora, Starbucks, etc), our photo presets & first free access to our new photography course launching soon. 🌟One winner after we hit 1,000 subscribers. 
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All you have to do to be entered is:
1️⃣ Subscribe to our channel on YouTube. Link in bio @stefanie.rouse or search Stefanie and Caleb on the Youtube app. And tell us below when you’ve done this. 
2️⃣ Tag a friend you wish you could go to the beach or snow with! 🎉For extra entries, watch, like, and comment on a video, extra entry per video! Let us know on this post that you’ve done this! ✅ Good luck! We’re so grateful for each of you! 
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Can you believe yesterday’s pictures and today’s are just two days apart? Which would you choose? Beach or snow? 
We share our wild adventure from this past weekend on our newest Vlog! *
Closes After we hit 1000 subscribers. The winner will be announced on Youtube & Instagram livestream. By entering, entrants confirm they are at least 18+ years of age, release Instagram of responsibility, and agree to abide by Instagram's terms of use.
375 3,980 3 days ago
🌟$100 gift card (your choice🎉sephora, starbucks, etc), our photo presets & first free access to our new photography course launching soon. 🌟one winner after we hit 1,000 subscribers.
__
all you have to do to be entered is:
1️⃣ subscribe to our channel on youtube. link in bio @stefanie.rouse or search stefanie and caleb on the youtube app. and tell us below when you’ve done this.
2️⃣ tag a friend you wish you could go to the beach or snow with! 🎉for extra entries, watch, like, and comment on a video, extra entry per video! let us know on this post that you’ve done this! ✅ good luck! we’re so grateful for each of you!
__
can you believe yesterday’s pictures and today’s are just two days apart? which would you choose? beach or snow?
we share our wild adventure from this past weekend on our newest vlog! *
closes after we hit 1000 subscribers. the winner will be announced on youtube & instagram livestream. by entering, entrants confirm they are at least 18+ years of age, release instagram of responsibility, and agree to abide by instagram's terms of use.
stefanie.rouse

@stefanie.rouse

Stefanie✧ Lifestyle Blogger
❄️ This snow storm was so intense. ❄️ I’m standing on about 10 feet of snow in this picture from over the weekend. A 3 night trip turned into 1. 10 hours of driving turned into 17. A weekend planned full of playing in the snow turned into a total of 30 minutes or less outside. We’ve had such great adventures in Mammoth in the past, but this past trip with an unexpected snow storm and a chance of getting snowed in and the highway having a big chance of getting closed to get home (from Lee Vining), all our plans had to change. 
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It wasn’t our ideal weekend, but Caleb & I grew closer together and learned a lot about God, each other, relationships, traveling and ourselves. 
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We’re sharing all about our trip in our newest🌟YouTube🌟(link in bio, or check my stories)
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Have you ever had a trip not go as planned? ❄️Would love to hear about it! Also, tell me if you love or hate the snow.
252 4,086 4 days ago
❄️ this snow storm was so intense. ❄️ i’m standing on about 10 feet of snow in this picture from over the weekend. a 3 night trip turned into 1. 10 hours of driving turned into 17. a weekend planned full of playing in the snow turned into a total of 30 minutes or less outside. we’ve had such great adventures in mammoth in the past, but this past trip with an unexpected snow storm and a chance of getting snowed in and the highway having a big chance of getting closed to get home (from lee vining), all our plans had to change.
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it wasn’t our ideal weekend, but caleb & i grew closer together and learned a lot about god, each other, relationships, traveling and ourselves.
__
we’re sharing all about our trip in our newest🌟youtube🌟(link in bio, or check my stories)
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have you ever had a trip not go as planned? ❄️would love to hear about it! also, tell me if you love or hate the snow.
stefanie.rouse

@stefanie.rouse

Stefanie✧ Lifestyle Blogger
Happy Valentine’s Day 🥰to the love of my life Caleb @cjrouse ! And Happy Valentine’s Day to all of you! 
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Caleb, you are my favorite human in the world. I learn so much from you everyday. There’s no person I would rather spend time with, look at 😍and do life with. I love you more all the time. 
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Thanks for being such a light in my life. 🌟Your kindness, courageous, hard work, sweetness make every day brighter. 
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I never thought I could love someone so much. You’re my person, best friend, business partner, & true love forever. 😘Thanks for making everyday feel like Valentine’s Day for me. 
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I love celebrating our love! ❤️Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!!
195 3,813 5 days ago
Happy valentine’s day 🥰to the love of my life caleb @cjrouse ! and happy valentine’s day to all of you!
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caleb, you are my favorite human in the world. i learn so much from you everyday. there’s no person i would rather spend time with, look at 😍and do life with. i love you more all the time.
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thanks for being such a light in my life. 🌟your kindness, courageous, hard work, sweetness make every day brighter.
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i never thought i could love someone so much. you’re my person, best friend, business partner, & true love forever. 😘thanks for making everyday feel like valentine’s day for me.
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i love celebrating our love! ❤️happy valentine’s day everyone!!
stefanie.rouse

@stefanie.rouse

Stefanie✧ Lifestyle Blogger
🌹 No matter your relationship status: You are loved beyond measure. Will you accept this rose? 🌹  And be my Galentine?
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Do you watch the bachelor?🌹 If so, tell me below how you’re liking this season. ⬇️My favorite part about the show is seeing how people interact, ways they’re portraying themselves and watching the connection grow. Having my Marriage & Family therapy Masters I find it so interesting to see how people handle themselves in relationships ❤️and vulnerable situations. It’s so intriguing to me. 
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The saddest thing about the show for me is when I see people putting too much of their value/worth in if they’re accepted by a man/woman. I’ve been there and that’s a slippery slop. It can still be a struggle for me even though I’m married.  The insatiable need I always had for attention can all fall on Caleb at times and puts way too much pressure on our relationship. It’s been something God’s been working on in me for a long time.
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Between the time I got broken up with from my ex-fiance on Valentines Day and the time I met Caleb, there was a lot of work to be done in my heart to realize my value didn’t change depending on my relationship status. I spent that time letting God teach me to love Him & myself, and find more about how my value, worth and being loved wasn’t changing with the tides.  It doesn’t change depending on age,  looks, popularity, success or failure, amount of zeros in a bank account or anything else. It’s because I’m made in God’s image, and so are you. 🌹 You are beautifully and wonderfully made. I want that assurance to saturate my heart & yours today!
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The truth is, no matter your relationship status: You are loved beyond measure. ❤️What do you think? Love hearing from you! #galentinesday #valentinesday2019
623 6,026 6 days ago
🌹 no matter your relationship status: you are loved beyond measure. will you accept this rose? 🌹  and be my galentine?
__
do you watch the bachelor?🌹 if so, tell me below how you’re liking this season. ⬇️my favorite part about the show is seeing how people interact, ways they’re portraying themselves and watching the connection grow. having my marriage & family therapy masters i find it so interesting to see how people handle themselves in relationships ❤️and vulnerable situations. it’s so intriguing to me.
__
the saddest thing about the show for me is when i see people putting too much of their value/worth in if they’re accepted by a man/woman. i’ve been there and that’s a slippery slop. it can still be a struggle for me even though i’m married.  the insatiable need i always had for attention can all fall on caleb at times and puts way too much pressure on our relationship. it’s been something god’s been working on in me for a long time.
__
between the time i got broken up with from my ex-fiance on valentines day and the time i met caleb, there was a lot of work to be done in my heart to realize my value didn’t change depending on my relationship status. i spent that time letting god teach me to love him & myself, and find more about how my value, worth and being loved wasn’t changing with the tides. it doesn’t change depending on age, looks, popularity, success or failure, amount of zeros in a bank account or anything else. it’s because i’m made in god’s image, and so are you. 🌹 you are beautifully and wonderfully made. i want that assurance to saturate my heart & yours today!
__
the truth is, no matter your relationship status: you are loved beyond measure. ❤️what do you think? love hearing from you! #galentinesday #valentinesday2019
stefanie.rouse

@stefanie.rouse

Stefanie✧ Lifestyle Blogger
Do you have some burdens you need to let go of and exchange them for praise and joy? 🌟 I know I do. This past weekend I had my expectations set high. 🤦🏽‍♀️ I planned a ‘relaxing’ weekend away in the mountains of Mammoth with Caleb.  I envisioned long walks in the snow, building snowmen, ice skating, skiing, hot chocolate by the fire, a super cozy and chill getaway. We’ve been to Mammoth before: and this is exactly what it was like. This time with an unexpected ❄️ snow storm we got a lot of driving on super sketch roads: unable to do any of the things listed above. 
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I felt discouraged, and like a let Caleb down. I knew he needed a break from stress he was facing and instead we ended up being in the car for about 18 hours. Although the drive was beautiful, some of it was very scary and didn’t make for a relaxing time. We are both very active: so just sitting that long drove us both crazy. And then tiny little things and some big things went wrong and it felt like the burdens were pilling up as high as the snow ❄️ was, 10/12 feet all around us.
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Caleb kept reminding me to choose joy. And so we tried counting our blessings and then put on some worship music. The song came on “This is how I fight my battles.” By Michael W Smith. The song starts off by saying “The Word says for the spirit of heaviness, put on the garment of praise… that’s how we fight our battles…it may look like I’m surrounded but I’m surrounded by you.” We sang it over and over again.
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It’s a beautiful reminder to me to have a perspective switch during times of anxiety, discouragement, or unmet expectations. That we are not alone. That we may look like we’re surrounded by things we don’t want, but we have a big God in our corner that’s close by. God’s in the business of making beauty from ashes. I wanted to remind you of this today to friends, Lord knows I need the reminding all the time. 😊 It’s amazing to let go of the weights we carry around “Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest…and you will find rest for your souls.” Matt.11:28
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Do you have any burdens you’re carrying today that you can exchange for gratitude and a perspective shift? 💕🌸
130 3,513 1 weeks ago
Do you have some burdens you need to let go of and exchange them for praise and joy? 🌟 i know i do. this past weekend i had my expectations set high. 🤦🏽‍♀️ i planned a ‘relaxing’ weekend away in the mountains of mammoth with caleb.  i envisioned long walks in the snow, building snowmen, ice skating, skiing, hot chocolate by the fire, a super cozy and chill getaway. we’ve been to mammoth before: and this is exactly what it was like. this time with an unexpected ❄️ snow storm we got a lot of driving on super sketch roads: unable to do any of the things listed above.
__
i felt discouraged, and like a let caleb down. i knew he needed a break from stress he was facing and instead we ended up being in the car for about 18 hours. although the drive was beautiful, some of it was very scary and didn’t make for a relaxing time. we are both very active: so just sitting that long drove us both crazy. and then tiny little things and some big things went wrong and it felt like the burdens were pilling up as high as the snow ❄️ was, 10/12 feet all around us.
__
caleb kept reminding me to choose joy. and so we tried counting our blessings and then put on some worship music. the song came on “this is how i fight my battles.” by michael w smith. the song starts off by saying “the word says for the spirit of heaviness, put on the garment of praise… that’s how we fight our battles…it may look like i’m surrounded but i’m surrounded by you.” we sang it over and over again.
__
it’s a beautiful reminder to me to have a perspective switch during times of anxiety, discouragement, or unmet expectations. that we are not alone. that we may look like we’re surrounded by things we don’t want, but we have a big god in our corner that’s close by. god’s in the business of making beauty from ashes. i wanted to remind you of this today to friends, lord knows i need the reminding all the time. 😊 it’s amazing to let go of the weights we carry around “come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and i will give you rest…and you will find rest for your souls.” matt.11:28
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do you have any burdens you’re carrying today that you can exchange for gratitude and a perspective shift? 💕🌸
stefanie.rouse

@stefanie.rouse

Stefanie✧ Lifestyle Blogger
I’ve always wanted a nice gold necklace or earrings, Caleb’s offered to buy it for me but I could never justify the price. That’s why I’m so excited and proud of my friend Tamara who started a 14k & 18k gold jewelry line called @pagnyala (pronounced like the end of champagne). __
Her goal was to create the finest gold jewelry solid gold) without the 5/10X markup of other company’s. 🌟I’m wearing the most sparkly chocked and the initial C necklace. I love wearing the C for Caleb & Christ. They have my heart. ❤️ Her jewelry is customizable, gorgeous and for amazing prices! 
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To celebrate 🎉Valentine’s Day she’s letting me offer you guys 15% off, with the code Stef15 ❤️ on her site www.pagnya.com or go to her page @pagnyala . 
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I feel so elegant wearing her pieces and it reminds me of my loves 🥰 What initial would you get on this beautiful necklace? Love hearing from you!
108 3,300 2 weeks ago
I’ve always wanted a nice gold necklace or earrings, caleb’s offered to buy it for me but i could never justify the price. that’s why i’m so excited and proud of my friend tamara who started a 14k & 18k gold jewelry line called @pagnyala (pronounced like the end of champagne). __
her goal was to create the finest gold jewelry solid gold) without the 5/10x markup of other company’s. 🌟i’m wearing the most sparkly chocked and the initial c necklace. i love wearing the c for caleb & christ. they have my heart. ❤️ her jewelry is customizable, gorgeous and for amazing prices!
__
to celebrate 🎉valentine’s day she’s letting me offer you guys 15% off, with the code stef15 ❤️ on her site www.pagnya.com or go to her page @pagnyala .
__
i feel so elegant wearing her pieces and it reminds me of my loves 🥰 what initial would you get on this beautiful necklace? love hearing from you!
stefanie.rouse

@stefanie.rouse

Stefanie✧ Lifestyle Blogger
Six years ago today, we took the first step towards forever. 🌟full story on blog🌟On the beach at Crystal Cove State Park in Laguna Beach, I proposed to Stefanie asking her to be mine forever. The day was epic, I thought I’d give you a little taste of what we did. And as Julie Andrews says in The Sound of Music, “these are a few of my favorite things” and that was the theme of the day! Full story 🌟link in bio on blog 🌟
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I am so happy to have made that decision and so glad that we can spend forever together. February 8th was an amazing day, and each anniversary of our engagement I am more thankful than the last for my beautiful princess! Do you have any days that are extra special for you? Love hearing from you!
8,338 3,602 2 weeks ago
Six years ago today, we took the first step towards forever. 🌟full story on blog🌟on the beach at crystal cove state park in laguna beach, i proposed to stefanie asking her to be mine forever. the day was epic, i thought i’d give you a little taste of what we did. and as julie andrews says in the sound of music, “these are a few of my favorite things” and that was the theme of the day! full story 🌟link in bio on blog 🌟
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i am so happy to have made that decision and so glad that we can spend forever together. february 8th was an amazing day, and each anniversary of our engagement i am more thankful than the last for my beautiful princess! do you have any days that are extra special for you? love hearing from you!
stefanie.rouse

@stefanie.rouse

Stefanie✧ Lifestyle Blogger
2 1/2 years ago Caleb and I set out to start our own business. 🎉We knew we needed a website to showcase what we did, and to communicate to our ideal clients. I choose WIX and I’m so glad I did! #WIXpartner WIX allows me to create my own stunning website easily and even has an app WIX Mobile that allows me to edit on the go. You can start from scratch or there are over 500 designer made templates for your website. This is where I showcase everything we do in our company.
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Our company has changed a lot as we’ve grown. 🐛🦋We previously were full time wedding photographers, and WIX made it so easy to showcase our albums, and allow clients to download their pictures. We were easily able to change things up as we’re now lifestyle bloggers and relationship & photography educators. We’ve even changed up our color scheme and branding over time, and WIX made the change super simple for us.
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We are easily able to also link our blog posts, our free webinars, YouTube content and anything else we want to showcase. I love that I can add and edit blog posts from the WIX app. 🌟Go to wix.com/go/StefanieRouse to get started on your free website today or check out the link in my bio! 🌟Have you tried Wix yet?
1,291 3,258 2 weeks ago
2 1/2 years ago caleb and i set out to start our own business. 🎉we knew we needed a website to showcase what we did, and to communicate to our ideal clients. i choose wix and i’m so glad i did! #wixpartner wix allows me to create my own stunning website easily and even has an app wix mobile that allows me to edit on the go. you can start from scratch or there are over 500 designer made templates for your website. this is where i showcase everything we do in our company.
___
our company has changed a lot as we’ve grown. 🐛🦋we previously were full time wedding photographers, and wix made it so easy to showcase our albums, and allow clients to download their pictures. we were easily able to change things up as we’re now lifestyle bloggers and relationship & photography educators. we’ve even changed up our color scheme and branding over time, and wix made the change super simple for us.
___
we are easily able to also link our blog posts, our free webinars, youtube content and anything else we want to showcase. i love that i can add and edit blog posts from the wix app. 🌟go to wix.com/go/stefanierouse to get started on your free website today or check out the link in my bio! 🌟have you tried wix yet?
stefanie.rouse

@stefanie.rouse

Stefanie✧ Lifestyle Blogger
“I’ve loved you for a thousand years.” ❤️ @cjrouse Caleb and I played this song for our first dance at our wedding (almost 6 years ago), those words touched a place in our soul because we both came from stories of such heartbreak in our past. Our hearts both so desperately longed for a place to call home. When we started dating each other it was honestly like coming home for both of us. It was if we’d loved each other for forever and finally things were made right. 
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Tears dripping down my face even now as the words ring even truer today. It’s weird thinking back on our love story, all the ups and downs 💔to get us to be together. The song we walked down the isle to says it well, “There must be a God, I believe its true. Cause I can see His love, when I look at you. And He must have a plan for this crazy life. Because He brought you here and placed you by my side.”
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To anyone who has given up on love like I almost did, and is feeling frustrated or alone in this season: I want to remind you that there’s so much hope for you. I got dumped💔 by my ex-fiancé on Valentine’s Day 10 years ago and I wondered if a sweet love story wasn’t in the cards for me. But God has a way to make beauty from brokenness. 
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I feel like I’ve loved Caleb for a thousand years, and I’ll love him for a thousand more. ❤️I’d love to hear about your story too, friend. Mine wasn’t always a happy one & things aren’t always peaches & easy for us either, but we’re not alone and I’d love to celebrate you or pray for you wherever you’re at in your journey. ❣️Love hearing from you always!
3,529 6,269 2 weeks ago
“i’ve loved you for a thousand years.” ❤️ @cjrouse caleb and i played this song for our first dance at our wedding (almost 6 years ago), those words touched a place in our soul because we both came from stories of such heartbreak in our past. our hearts both so desperately longed for a place to call home. when we started dating each other it was honestly like coming home for both of us. it was if we’d loved each other for forever and finally things were made right.
__
tears dripping down my face even now as the words ring even truer today. it’s weird thinking back on our love story, all the ups and downs 💔to get us to be together. the song we walked down the isle to says it well, “there must be a god, i believe its true. cause i can see his love, when i look at you. and he must have a plan for this crazy life. because he brought you here and placed you by my side.”
__
to anyone who has given up on love like i almost did, and is feeling frustrated or alone in this season: i want to remind you that there’s so much hope for you. i got dumped💔 by my ex-fiancé on valentine’s day 10 years ago and i wondered if a sweet love story wasn’t in the cards for me. but god has a way to make beauty from brokenness.
__
i feel like i’ve loved caleb for a thousand years, and i’ll love him for a thousand more. ❤️i’d love to hear about your story too, friend. mine wasn’t always a happy one & things aren’t always peaches & easy for us either, but we’re not alone and i’d love to celebrate you or pray for you wherever you’re at in your journey. ❣️love hearing from you always!
stefanie.rouse

@stefanie.rouse

Stefanie✧ Lifestyle Blogger
“I love God, my Family, & everyone SO much, Thanks Father Almighty! ❤️ Stef.” @stefanie.rouse 
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I wrote in a diary almost everyday starting at age 11, and I wrote the above sentence (slide write to see) at the end of most entries. But my heart started getting calloused. Diary entries evolved to share more pain I was feeling. Left out, abused, depressed. Words of hatred I had towards myself and others. Emotions I couldn’t control, friendships failing, not being understood, not getting invited, being cheated on & sexually abused. Feeling like I was a let down. 
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Life can beat out that childhood innocence and love. My heart grew harder. I still would smile a lot, but I was hiding my pain and putting on an act. I so desperately wanted to be loved, and I tried to be what I thought other people wanted me to be. I wanted so desperately to measure up, but always fell short.
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My life changed after my sophomore year in college. I put my life fully in God’s hands, studying God’s word became my passion and I couldn’t get enough. I started throwing out the old fake version of myself, and learning to love God, myself & others again. But still disappoints & pain have wanted to pull me towards bitterness and a hard heart.
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I long to have that child-like tender heart. Seeing the best in everyone. Letting go of hurt, pain and disappointment. Not because I’m naïve, but because I know that someone has already paid the price for all the pain in this world. God can remove my heart of stone and give me a heart of flesh. And then the Lord can protect my heart. 
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God’s love isn’t selfish, it’s not wishy-washy. His love is unconditional, unfailing. Nothing can separate us from His love. When we accept His love, we can then love unselfishly, freely: not based on what others have done for us, but because of Jesus’ great love. 
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“And now we love because he first loved us.”-1John 4:19. I want to have that soft heart again, and not out of an insatiable need to be accepted by others, but because He first loved us. You are loved beyond measure my friend ❤️ Stefanie. Did you every keep a diary? Love hearing from you!
3,028 4,460 2 weeks ago
“i love god, my family, & everyone so much, thanks father almighty! ❤️ stef.” @stefanie.rouse
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i wrote in a diary almost everyday starting at age 11, and i wrote the above sentence (slide write to see) at the end of most entries. but my heart started getting calloused. diary entries evolved to share more pain i was feeling. left out, abused, depressed. words of hatred i had towards myself and others. emotions i couldn’t control, friendships failing, not being understood, not getting invited, being cheated on & sexually abused. feeling like i was a let down.
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life can beat out that childhood innocence and love. my heart grew harder. i still would smile a lot, but i was hiding my pain and putting on an act. i so desperately wanted to be loved, and i tried to be what i thought other people wanted me to be. i wanted so desperately to measure up, but always fell short.
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my life changed after my sophomore year in college. i put my life fully in god’s hands, studying god’s word became my passion and i couldn’t get enough. i started throwing out the old fake version of myself, and learning to love god, myself & others again. but still disappoints & pain have wanted to pull me towards bitterness and a hard heart.
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i long to have that child-like tender heart. seeing the best in everyone. letting go of hurt, pain and disappointment. not because i’m naïve, but because i know that someone has already paid the price for all the pain in this world. god can remove my heart of stone and give me a heart of flesh. and then the lord can protect my heart.
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god’s love isn’t selfish, it’s not wishy-washy. his love is unconditional, unfailing. nothing can separate us from his love. when we accept his love, we can then love unselfishly, freely: not based on what others have done for us, but because of jesus’ great love.
___
“and now we love because he first loved us.”-1john 4:19. i want to have that soft heart again, and not out of an insatiable need to be accepted by others, but because he first loved us. you are loved beyond measure my friend ❤️ stefanie. did you every keep a diary? love hearing from you!