Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Orphan Sunday // Awareness and Empowerment

Orphan Sunday -- A day to remember that the lives of orphans and vulnerable children are valuable, a reminder to care and to tell them that they are loved (or support families that have committed the rest of their lives to raising adopted and foster children so that they will grow up knowing what it is to be loved).

Here is a PDF booklet of next steps you can take after Orphan Sunday is done for the year.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Happier giving or spending? Does it have to be a choice?

"What a foolish, frivolous person I must be," she sighed. "I'm wholesomely ashamed to think that a dress... Even if it is a forget-me-not organdy... Should exhilarate me so, when a good conscience and an extra contribution to Foreign Missions couldn't do it."
// Anne of Avonlea

It's just the truth isn't it? No matter how aware or moved we are by the accounts of others in the world who live with less than us, giving to charity is not often as exciting as a new edition to our bursting closets or, as in my case, bursting bookshelves. We have the freedom to be frivolous, even if only from time to time, while most in the world do not. Like Anne, we ought to be ashamed of our selfish hearts, but in our day and age we can be exhilarated by something new for ourselves while at the same time being excited about giving!
For example, with TOMS shoes (by far my favorite shoes, and I am a shoe girl!), for every pair you buy they donate a pair to a child without any shoes, one for one. FashionABLE scarves are gorgeous and comfortable and they provide income for women in Africa. The acacia necklaces I buy from Visiting Orphans (but you can find on various other sites too) also provide income for women in Africa. Then there is Noonday Collection from which you can buy many beautiful bracelets, wonderfully rustic trays, or this (long desired by me) catch-all purse! And it is all providing jobs for women in several different countries on many different continents who would otherwise live in shame and poverty. {I can't wait for you all to hear more about Noonday in a few weeks. A blogging friend and adoptive momma of two is going to be guest posting about them. Stay tuned or Follow my blog so you don't miss it!}
We really have the best of both worlds. I anticipate the day when I can go for chai with my girlfriends, buy a book or see a movie with my family and have THAT provide support and income for fatherless children and widows around the world! Dream big. It CAN happen. :)

Friday, October 26, 2012

What I Wore // Acacia Necklace

Last week I told you all that I am allergic to jewelry and its true, if it is made with metals. I can wear paper-bead necklaces all day long though! And just like the fashionABLE scarf I wore last week, these necklaces are made by women in Africa and sold for their income.

Transitioning from sundresses to autumn layers is fun. I made one of my favorite sundresses look like a skirt by just layering a detailed cardigan over it and pairing leggings and boots with it. The "various blue" acacia necklace tied the whole look together for me.

Necklace // Visiting Orphans
Cardigan // Khols
Sundress // Target
Leggings // Target 
Boots // My mom's closet

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Of vaccinations and visiting orphans

Last time I got shots I was five years old and, though I was as quiet back then as I am today, I screamed at the top of my lungs when that needle pricked my arm. I was completely freaked out! Having that as my last memory of getting a shot has resulted in quite a build-up of stress as I anticipate getting all the vaccinations I need before heading to India. [I will be there for two weeks with Visiting Orphans starting on November 27th.]
Today was the first round of shots. I wanted to be comfy and relaxed so I wore my sweat-pants and a loose-fitting henley, knowing that the sleeve would have to be pushed up for the shot. Ironically this henley is VO merchandise and has the logo on the front. While I was sitting in the nurse's office and they were trying to distract me by staying in my face and asking lots of questions, they asked why I was going to India. As soon as I said, "To visit orphans" they noticed my shirt and lit up and I was reminded that this trip, or rather the kids I will encounter on it, mean enough to me for me to be pricked with needles and have an achy arm for a few days over the next couple of weeks. So, as I am soothing my aching arm these next few weeks, the pain will serve as a reminder of the Lord's aching heart for the fatherless and I will rejoice in the opportunity I have to be His hands and feet to more than 100 of them in just one month!!

Friday, October 19, 2012

What I Wore // fashionABLE

I am allergic to necklaces. Sad, but true. Even if it is the tiniest piece of metal (for example, the clasp of a necklace) my face and neck are so sensitive that I break out into a nasty rash. Too much info, huh? 
It didn't take long for me to realize that scarves are just as lovely of an accessory, and since I live in a place that most people consider to be "up north", I have plenty of cool months to wear scarves.

Autumn of course is the best. The sun is still warm enough that you don't need a heavy coat or boots but the air is crisp. Perfect sweater and jean weather!

Are you curious yet about the lovely, hand-woven scarf I am wearing? A precious woman in Africa made it and by purchasing it (how could I refuse? It is beautiful!) I helped not only provided her with income but an income made with dignity. She used to have to sell her body to bring in money for her family. Now she gets to do work she can be proud of. Win, win, win!

Wrap-Sweater // Target
Skinny Jeans // Target
Ballet Flats // Target
Blue Scarf // fashionABLE

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

You have influence

We all have those seasons. We all wonder at one point or another what we were thinking when we got into something... We wonder if what we are doing really matters. Why am I at college? Why did I take this job? Why did homeschooling seem so perfect? Why did I think that the world needed another blog? We want our life to matter.

I don't like to waste my time or my effort. I don't have a hard time saying no to things. I'm a dreamer and a perfectionist though and that makes it really hard for me to decide what it is that I really want to throw myself into. I want what I do to succeed and I am afraid to fail. GOALS. Goals are critical to making what you do count but I have avoided making them for fear of failing to reach them. I didn't understand that experimenting and goal-making goes hand-in-hand. There is room for failure in goal-making because there is room for failure in experimenting. {Thank you, John Saddington for showing me that!} "Through failing we learn, through success not so much." // Meet the Robinsons
Our culture expects us to know exactly, specifically what we are going to do with our life by our senior year of high school. I was very secure in Christ and knew that going to college would be a waste of my time and my energy (not to mention my money) so I wasn't ashamed to tell people that my plan was not to go to college. But, now, I'm 3 years removed from high school graduation and those expectations and probing questions still haunt my mind. Since my "plan" is to be a wife and a mother, but The Lord has seen fit for me to remain single up to this point, it is so easy to feel like I am not doing anything with my life, like I'm failing at life. But the fact is that these years are for experimenting and discovering, growing and changing. "I may not know the way I go but, oh, I know my Guide!" Life is a winding road and I don't need to know the step-by-step plan because the One leading me each step of the way knows it. Seriously, "it's the climb"! {Anne Bogel was used by God to give me this peace-bringing perspective.}

Being vulnerable along the way is out of the question when you're afraid to fail and you often feel that you already have failed because you never even "started", according to culture. "I don't have a vision for the entirety of my life." Why would I want to share that with anyone? But when I am secure in the hands of Christ and my identity is wrapped up in Him rather than my achievements (or lack thereof) I can share my weaknesses and be vulnerable without fear, because even in my weakest moments I am strong, for Christ lives in me. The story of my life is that I am not good enough, but there is hope and a future for me in Christ! If I can help others to see that, see themselves through His eyes, by being vulnerable, consider it done! {Nish Weiseth, you gave me the push I needed. Thank you!}

This is relatable. Doesn't everybody have a dream? Don't we all feel a bit paralyzed by fear of failure when it comes to pursuing those dreams? There is that inspiration in our lives that keeps our dream alive and at the same time makes us feel so inadequate and unqualified. Oh to be a writer like Jo March in Little Women! Or, a great cook like Julia Child! Or, a world changer for Christ like Hudson Taylor or Amy Carmichael! With the exception of fictional characters, all those people were just ordinary people like you and I, and there isn't any reason that we couldn't reach our dreams like they did. Jenna Weber, Julie Powell, Jackie Pullinger and Katie Davis are a few examples of people from this day and age that achieved their goals without being "qualified". {Allie Lehman made comparing myself with an inspirational person motivating and profitable, rather than depressing, and Jenna Weber has become an inspiration herself, though she probably doesn't see that.}
Of course self-determination and hard work can only get you so far, but the distance The Lord can take you if you are fully surrendered to Him is inconceivable. You want your life to count? Do everything for the glory of God. He is so ready to show you how to glorify Him in all areas of your life and to give you all you need to do it. "The world has yet to see what a life fully yielded to God can do." What a thought! As the Body we ought to be spurring one another on to greater depths of surrender and striving to abide more fully all the time. {Sarah Matheny, your life is a testimony of the change and glory that comes from surrender. It is beautiful!}

At the end of the day we will feel like what we are doing counts if it is our passion (something The Lord wired us to be good at and to love doing) or our purpose (one of the specific things that The Lord created us for, for such a time as this). Our passions and purposes aren't always clear when we are up to our eyeballs in work, dealing with pain, in difficult and stressful circumstances or lost in mundanity. "All you who are weary and heavy laden, come to Me and I will give you rest." Consider that an invitation to cast all your cares upon Him and pour out your heart to Him, take a step back and let Him remind you of the bigger picture.
I was able to do that very intentionally a few mornings ago and the clarity I received was incredible. To find that in the midst of all my many passions my greatest ones are sharing my heart and knowing people well and loving them well... To find that one of my purposes is advocating for vulnerable children and showing others the beauty that lies in the mundane. It doesn't sound like much but I truly believe that seemingly insignificant things have far more of an impact than we imagine. Just being Christ's love to my family is enough. If that is all I did with my whole life it would be enough.
So if your passion is bringing joy through letter-writing and you're at college, perhaps your purpose is bringing joy to the girls in your dorm. If your passion is teaching and you're a homeschool mom who's kids don't seem to have a passion for learning, perhaps your purpose is to teach them by example how to extend grace and unconditional love and to be long suffering. If your passion is art and you work in a cubicle answering phones, perhaps your purpose is the art of communicating Christ through your tone of voice (that's a bit of a stretch but you see what I'm getting at). {Barrett Ward made passion and purpose feel way less complicated and far more attainable. His secret? Ask The Lord. It works.}

So you're sitting there in front of your screen, one of the members of the blogging world and you just don't think it really matters if you write or not. Really hear me when I say that your voice matters and it makes a difference.

This is what I learned at the Influence conference.
And now I get to share it with you!

Much love,

P.S. The community of "friends" you have in the blog world, though it feels so intangible, is the same as having those friends in the real world. Don't be afraid. Say hi!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Books-a-Million vs Sevenly

I can lose track of time in a book store. I like to collect books I'd like to read and carry them around while I keep browsing or pile them around me where I sit down (my apologies to the employee that has to put them all back). I was in Books-a-Million doing some serious unwinding (and thus some serious book collecting) today. After I had sat and looked through and read snippets from each of the books I had gathered I made various piles to help me determine which, if any, I would buy. I had settled on two that I was really interested in and made economical sense to buy. Meanwhile it came to mind that it was Monday which means that had announced this weeks cause and limited edition tees. Naturally, I opened my browser on my iPhone and checked it out. This week the proceeds from each shirt sold will feed 21 kids who are starving in Kenya. "That's awesome!" I thought and was about to go back to my book sorting and completely forget to care about it when I was struck by my indifference. There in that moment I, who's life-hardship at present is having too many books for the minimum shelf space I have, was justifying the spending of a little money (that is truly the Lord's anyway) on something I didn't need at all when I had the opportunity and choice to use that money to feed 21 kids who are in desperate need of food. Ouch! Imagine if those 21 kids were mine, I was watching them starve and I only had $30. Do you think I would go out and buy a few more books? No way! I would buy them food. I would sell all of my other books to feed them too!
It's easy to start to feel like giving $30 is just a drop in the bucket and it won't make a difference for those in need. That's easy to think when we spend pocket change on a hamburger or a DVD. However our "pocket change" is ten times the amount poor families LIVE ON per day ($1). The fact is that little choices lead to big change.
"If you can't feed a hundred people, just feed one." // mother theresa
There in the midst of a pile of books, making the choice to spend money the Lord has given me on caring for His children instead of spending it on my fleeting enjoyment... That is leading to a big change of perspective in me and a big change in the lives of 21 precious children (that change being a chance for survival).
I'm not going to stop buying books but today in the battle of BAM vs Sevenly, Sevenly won. And I am glad.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Final thoughts (before the Influence conference) - Part Five

"Suddenly I'm light and easy because of all the beautiful and new things I'm learning about you day by day."
// getting to know you - the King and I

I'm so excited! Excited for a road trip... For six hours of open road to myself. Excited to finally meet the faces I've seen on Facebook and hear the voices of the gals I'm carpooling with from Chicago down to Indianapolis. I'm nervous about that too, but mostly just that I'll walk up to the wrong house or they won't recognize me. The girls I'm rooming with will have checked in by the time we arrive and it's so exciting to think of finding our room and walking in to meet them! It feels like school all over again... Only knowing a little about who your roommate is but being so glad that you'll have instant connections and someone to walk around with in the crowd of women. I'm excited for the meet up I'm going to for dinner that night and the chance to hear about people's lives. I really want to know these women that I hardly know now but really cherish. Uncharacteristically I'm not freaking out about whether I'll feel accepted or wanted. I think it's because I just know I will be. This is going to be such a welcoming environment I think and a place where I will feel at ease if not a place where I will really shine.
I am greatly anticipating what the Lord will show me about how He wants to take my influence and use it for greater purposes and greater glory. I want Him to prune me this weekend so I will produce MUCH fruit.
I can't wait to hear all the passions and dreams and life stories of the women attending. I want to hear their hearts and see the Lord's hand on them.
I'm bringing my photography gear and can't wait to capture the conference on camera! I'm going to bring home those first nervous and excited moments, the easy and comfortable moments, the deep-in-thought and life-changing moments, and the ones where we unwillingly say goodbye for now. This is the start of a beautiful community and I'm thrilled to be a part of it.

See you tomorrow. :)

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Getting to feel free and easy (before the Influence conference) - Part Four

A - Accent you wish you had
Either Southern or British. Hard to pick. Both are dear to my heart.

B - Baking or Cooking?
Baking for sure. All the prep works happens at once, all the assembling happens at once, then you just clean up and enjoy a cup of tea until its done. :)

via Pinterest

C - Can't Get Enough.....
Time alone or a care-free enough mind to read.

D - Drink you can't go without
Water. If I don't keep my Camelbak filled and near me I get dehydrated. Milk is a close second. I've had milk to drink for every meal at home since I was a little kid.

via Pinterest

E - Emotion you get when those Hallmark commercials come on
I don't think I've ever actually seen one. I don't watch much TV.

F - Fictional Character you relate to
Elizabeth Bennet (Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen), Elinor Dashwood (Sense & Sensibility by Jane Austen), Margaret Hale (North & South by Elizabeth Gaskell), Molly Gibson (Wives & Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell). I am sure that there are more. I relate to a character in every book I read.

via Pinterest

G - Guilty Pleasure
Limited Edition tees from, getting to help change the world for people I won't ever get to meet but that matter.

via Pinterest

H - Hometown
I've never determined whether my answer to this should be where I was born or where I spent most of my childhood years. One was Cadillac, MI and the other was Bemidji, MN.

I - Ice Cream Flavor
Ben & Jerry's Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough.

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J - Jumpstart Go To (aka how you get your day started)
Propping my pillows up in bed and sitting up, checking my iPhone notifications, reading the Word, thinking about all I have to do that day.

K - Keepsake Item
My mom's old toy horses, my dad's first professional grade digital camera, a hand-painted fan of my great-grandma's, a tea pot of my great-great-grandma's... I cherish heritage and family history and memories. Keepsakes help to trigger memories that are special.

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L - Life Verse(s)
Romans 12:1 //  I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
Philippians 3:12-14 // Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Isaiah 54:1 // Sing, O barren, thou that didst not bear; break forth into singing, and cry aloud, thou that didst not travail with child: for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife, saith the Lord.
Acts 17:28 // For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.

M - Memory that makes you smile
I have lots of memories and lots of stories. The first memory that came to mind though is meeting the children from Haiti that came over for the first tour of His Little Feet (a children's choir), and then over the next weeks and months gaining and special bond with one of the little boys. When all the other kids were playing soccer, even though he liked to play, he would come and sit by me instead. We would just sit, sometimes we would talk but we were happy to just enjoy each other's company. Often times in a crowd I would feel someone slip their hand in mine and I would turn around to find Likendly right next to me. I miss my little man. I miss hearing his precious voice call me "Auntie Chelsea" and seeing his mischievous, darling smile across the room.

N - Non-fiction writer you want to have dinner with
Since it isn't specified whether they need to be alive in this present age I am going to have to go with C. S. Lewis, Elizabeth Elliot, David Wilkerson, Amy Carmichael, George Muller, Ronald Reagan, Major Ian Thomas, and Corrie ten Boom. I would want to sit and just hear them converse with each other about the Lord. 

via Pinterest

O - Opulent Item You Want (something that is way out of your price range)
An English Manor on acres and acres of land. 

P - Pattern You Love
Plaid or floral.

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Q - Quirk You Have
I laugh silently a lot of the time. I am laughing really hard but nothing comes out. 

R - Relaxing Spot
My room, the end of a dock on a lake, the top of a grassy hill, a quiet corner of nature anywhere really, a chair in the cafe my mom works at, the passenger seat of a car my dad is driving...

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S - Snow or Sun?
SUN. I have grown up with snow covering far too many months of the year and, though I always want to have snow for the holidays, I could live very happily with no snow for the bulk of the winter months. I love being in the warm sun. Sunny summer days on a blanket in the yard, reading and soaking up the rays. I love feeling warm all the way to the bone. I love how bronze my skin turns in the summer. Love, love, love the sun.

T - TV show you miss
Ummm... Wishbone? My favorite oldies were Barney and Winnie the Pooh. They sure don't make those shows like they used to.

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U - Unique Fact About You
At the age of 15 I had moved 15 times.

V - Valentine's Day...big deal or not?
I like Valentine's Day. I love making special cards with my little siblings for all of our family members and then seeing them all piled up on our plates before dinner. 

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W - What's Your Love Language?
Quality Time & Acts of Service are tied for highest place, Words of Affirmation & Physical Touch are tied for second.

X - X-Factor Song You Would Sing (sidenote: I don't watch the show...)
I don't watch it but if I had to sing a song for a big performance where they would judge my ability to sing I would pick a musical solo such as "I Dreamed a Dream" from Les Miserables, "Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again" from Phantom of the Opera, or "My White Knight" from the Music Man.

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Y - Yoga or Not?

Z - Zealous Dream You Have
Adopting children. I could go into that a lot more but I will keep it simple.

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Getting to like you, getting to hope you like me (before the Influence conference) - Part Three

I like to be prepared for things and as someone who moved 15 times within 15 years I am good at packing. Needless to say I was packed for influence two weeks ago so that I wouldn't have to worry about forgetting anything. However my birthday was yesterday and my momma bought me five gorgeous scarves so my outfits may change to incorporate a few of those. :)

Pictured below is the list I made and the items I packed two weeks ago. Things not on the list that I will bring include my purse with all the essentials ("buying power", water bottle, Chapstick, lotion, nail clipper, deodorant, sunglasses and a small notebook). In my car will be a GPS and music. Oh and if we're talking snacks too, LUNA bars and Go-Go Squeeze apple sauce packets will be the two quick grabs I'll make.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Home Again

10am, Sitting on my bed, downloading photos from our vacation, listening to Jenny & Tyler's "A Song for You". The sound of the furnace running and heat blowing out through the wonderfully old fashioned vent in my room is getting me used to the idea of the cold season approaching. Goose bumps on my arms, feet tucked under a cozy fleece blanket, tummy filled happily with apple cinnamon oatmeal, thinking its about time to put the kettle on for a cup of tea.

Processing the past few days, pondering the future, trying to keep the plans for the present straight. Conference call for my mission trip to India tonight (I'm so afraid I'm going to forget all about it... again), last minute planning of what we need to buy for groceries and what I will wear tomorrow (it's my 20th birthday!), waiting to hear back from the teacher I am subbing for on Tuesday at the homeschool co-op, so glad I packed for the Influence conference two weeks ago so that I can have a day to catch my breath on Wednesday before getting in the car early on Thursday and heading to Indiana.

The days and years roll on like the green hills that I call home and the waves from my childhood home and favorite places to visit. I like change like that, a slow pace that gives you time to savor every step and warm up to the new, a steady pace that allows you to linger here and there along the way but doesn't let you grow stagnant. Meditating on the beauty of this truth, "For everything there is a season and a time for every purpose under heaven." Resting in the hands of the God who created seasons and waves and hills and knows every crevice of my heart and life.

11am, haven't moved, pictures are edited and being uploaded to various social media sites. Yellow leaves falling through the sky and blowing past my top-story window. Jenny & Tyler still playing in the background, hot air still blowing through the vent beneath my bed-side table, feet getting sticky and warm from being under the fleece blanket, really ready to have a nice cup of tea now that I've recalled the many mugs of fragrant liquid I consumed during our Holiday by the lake.

Remembering today all the movies I loved as a child (the Little Princess, the Secret Garden, Heidi, Misty, Black Beauty, and the classic Disney movies) and the year that I set out to read one piece of classic literature per week, and did it for months, but not the whole year. Thinking about how the things that you experience as a child play a big part in shaping you into the adult you become. I've considered myself an adult for a few years now but somehow my 20th birthday makes it official. As a book lover and movie lover, a people lover and a big-time journaler (which apparently isn't a word, but I'll use it anyway) I am fascinated by the study and development of characters, fictional or real. I love classic literature for the deep characters and fantastic character development they are made up of, I love biographies for how they paint a picture of people I admire or am intrigued by, and I love to journal to process who the Lord is shaping me to be and to look back on where He has brought me from.

The woman I want to be today was influenced by my travel-loving and entrepreneurial Dad, my country-girl and home-maker Momma, my fascinating "Grandma Great", Jim Elliot, Cinderella, "Little Mommy", C. S. Lewis's books, Rich Mullins, the American Girl's (Samantha and Kit especially), Belle from Beauty and the Beast, Robin Hood, Steven Curtis Chapman and Ronald Reagan, among others. I desire to have the grace, influence, humility, graciousness and compassion of a princess who was raised in a cottage, was best friends with her Daddy, could befriend timid woodland animals, and can do house-keeping as good as any maid. I want to be a Proverbs 31 woman for my husband and children, I want to aid in the rescue and loving of vulnerable children around the world, I want to teach my children at home, I want to garden like my Mammy (mom's mom), do photography like my Daddy used to, cook like my Momma and manage a house in the country on lots of land just like a great lady would. I want to be as adventurous as my childhood bestie, possess the hospitality of my other dear childhood friend, the joy of beautiful Jade, the tender heart of my sweet friend in Pennsylvania, the humility of my darling Kelsey, the unconditional love of dear Jessica, the ready laugh of my Lydia-friend, and generous heart of precious Mikayla.

I have been so aware of the Old Man still alive and in control in my life of late. I have also been so aware of the wonder of who my God is. The more like Him I become, the closer to Him I draw, the more I see state of my soul and nastiness of my life apart from Him and the more I hide myself in the truth that my great God is IN me, FOR me and WITH me. I have developed a flawed way of handling sin I see in myself and in others and the result of sin the world at large. I fixate on it, meditate on it, shake me head at it, hang my head over it, despair over it. "In every season, You are still God, I have a reason to sing, I have a reason to worship." Every glimpse of sin in my wicked heart and those all around me should only send my eyes straight up to the Lord in praise, for He is Lord of all and able to save all who will let Him in. I can bring my wickedness before Him in complete faith that He is already aware of it and ready to transform that part of my life from a fallen nature to His likeness. I have been given His power, His joy, His love, His mercy... I can forgive and show compassion to my enemies, I can walk in peace and rejoice always in spite of my imperfection and all the mistakes I make through the day. Walking in despair makes the Old Man the one people see when they see me, walking in the triumph of Jesus' blood makes Him the one people see when they see me. I want to be that light, that tangible testimony, to the people all around me on whom I have influence.

12pm, sitting in my little slipper chair, in need of chap-stick, thinking its about time I removed the old nail polish from my toes and re-paint them, hoping the wrinkles come out of my blouse before tomorrow. This is where I am right now and I can tell you that I am all here, in the present. Smiling because I am loved by the best Man who ever lived, rejoicing in my heart at how faithful He is and how sure our relationship is of lasting forever because of that, anticipating with excitement what He has in store for the rest of the day, for tomorrow and for the (chilly) remainder of the year.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Getting to know all about you (before the Influence conference) - Part Two

Good morning from the shore of Lake Michigan! Last day of vaca. and I am right at that point where you think you could get used to being on vacation but part of you is really ready to go home, back to your bed and your food and your car. You know that feeling? It's funny how the nicest part about going away for a bit is coming back home.
Now, onto another post link-up with the ladies I'll be meeting in Indy in about five days.

// What was your favorite food when you were a child? //
I don't remember having a favorite food. I know I wasn't a picky eater as a child so maybe I was just content with anything (except spinach manicotti -- that was utterly disgusting to me, as a child) as long as my momma made it. Dad's cooking was always more casual than mom's but it was special to me too.
To this day I'm not crazy about cooking for myself but it's super special to me when my mom or dad cooks. Can having food prepared for you with love be a love language?

// When you have 30 minutes of free-time, how do you pass the time? //
Depends on the day and where I am. If its a typical school day, the kids are doing their school quietly and don't need my help for 30min I will probably sit in the silence and catch up on blogs or save inspiration on pinterest, clean the kitchen up or even walk down our road to get some fresh air and fresh patience. If I'm in town and I have 30min it's either because I'm running errands to get out of the house (which I will happily spend in our super Target) or because I have to wait in town to pick someone up before heading back home. If that is the case, I will still go to super Target, I'll stop by my dad's office to say hello and my mom's job at the cafe where we may get to chat a bit between rushes.

// Have you ever had something happen to you that you thought was bad but it turned out to be for the best? //
Nothing immediately comes to mind. However, I've been a fearful person most of my life and it take a long time for me to warm up to new things so I know I've thought a lot of new or unexpected things that happened to me would be bad but the Lord holds my life in His hands and I know that even the "bad" that does happen is for my good, my growth, and trusting Him through it all brings Him glory.
Wait! I just thought of one! Flying by myself for the first time. I thought it was a horrible idea but because of it I've traveled many places on my own (including Europe!) now.

// What is your favorite body part? //
My fingers (I think they're pretty) and my collar bones (I think they're elegant). Those are the first that come to mind. I really like every thing about how the Lord made me though. I'm not insecure about my looks.

// If you could choose to stay a certain age forever, what age would it be? //
Pass. There are some ages in my life that have been really sweet and are some of my dearest memories but I don't want to stay in any one of them forever. Sounds like groundhogs day. I'd much rather keep right on living and growing and changing and making more sweet memories of treasured times in the process.

All for now.
{I'm singing "Getting to know you" from "The King and I" now.}

Friday, October 5, 2012

Getting to know you (before the Influence conference) - Part One

{Before I begin let me just say that I'm using the blogger app on my phone to write this from our vacation hotel room so if there are typos and less variation of font size, that is why. Anywho...}

// What’s the #1 most played song on your iPod? //
Apparently I can't check on my phone's iTunes what I listen to the most so I was going to venture a guess... The artists I listened to a lot while driving this summer included: Taylor Swift (just realized this year that I like a lot of her old stuff), Brandon Heath (one of my favorite artists to "default" to), and Frank Sinatra (and lots of his contemporaries on my Frank Sinatra or Bing Crosby pandora playlists).
Edited to add: I checked my number of plays on all the songs in my iTunes and discovered that the most played song I have is "River Flow In You" by Yiruma which is an instrumental song. In fact, the top sixteen most played songs are instrumental. The most played song with lyrics is "Great Reward" by Shane and Shane.

// If you had to work on only one project for the next year, what would it be? //
I'm not at liberty to speak about it but there is definitely a project I want to work on next year.

// What story does your family always tell about you? //
Growing up my best friend and I were inseparable. Eating dinner at her house was great, but a little dangerous. The food was always so good but the family conversation was always so hilarious that I was in danger of laughing with food in my mouth and consequently either choking on it or spitting it all over. I finally decided that I was going to learn how to eat and laugh at the same time. And after lots of practice I mastered it!
Then a day came where I was having lunch with my own family and someone said something funny that caught me off guard and a bit of the food in my mouth slipped through my well trained lips and hit my little brother in the forehead.
I have never slipped up like that ANY other time in my life (that I recall) but my family still warns every guest that sits across from me not to make me laugh when I have food in my mouth.

// The best part of waking up is? //
Processing what I dreamed of the night before in the quiet and calm of my room while the sun pours in my window.

// What is your favorite time of day/day of the week/month of the year? //
My favorite day of the week is Saturday. The one day I can sleep in if I want/need to (I homeschool my siblings during the week) and then do whatever I want to do with a whole day!

See you all again tomorrow!