March 31, 2011

The Unknown Solution

I shared here about my problem storing my crafting supplies. At the time I saw two solutions that were possible, both with their own problems intertwined. If I have learned anything in my 41 years it is that I don't know anything. I brainstormed, and considered, and discussed the situation with Captain. I kept hoping he would say something that would allow me to pretend that he didn't mind storing my craft supplies in the dining room, but he didn't. I knew if I kept going that direction, while he would never say anything, it wouldn't be what he wanted. I had to stop in my tracks. I also struggled with getting rid of all of my books. One night I tossed and turned and thought and considered, and finally fell asleep with no solution. When I woke, it was there.

I realized that I have been waiting for a table to return out of my oldest's room. He "borrowed" the table after Christmas to keep his turntable and records on it. The plan was for him to purchase a table of his own, and my table would return to it's spot. The plan never really came to fruition, but this meant I had an empty spot I hadn't considered. Instead of getting a table, I went and picked up a small bookshelf. I was thrilled, and it sat empty for a day. It seemed that deciding which books showed up in public became a huge decision. Then it hit me to place the books that I loved the most. My best friends of books. And in so doing, I emptied the book shelves in the extra room yet didn't have to get rid of them.

The unknown solution.


Apparently my best friends in books.


I did end up with one small box of books that I will either pass on, donate, reuse, or recycle but they are books I wasn't attached to. It seemed when the books were all mixed up the idea of removing any became overwhelming and impossible. Once I sorted through all of them, decided which ones would never leave, and which ones I needed to stay, the ones who needed a new home simply jumped out at me.

I love that I may not always know the solution, but can trust that a solution will come nontheless. The hard part sometimes is waiting for it.

PS. That magnolia picture is waiting for it's solution as well.

March 30, 2011

Crazy.

My head hurts this morning. I woke up to the headache, and tried to sleep it off to no avail.
Lately I am very emotionally sensitive and prone to tears quickly over a commercial that isn't sappy.
I find myself very defensive for those I love, even when a defense may not be necessary.
I find myself on the defense with others, and then extremely guilty about it the next minute.
I am working hard to do what needs to be done so I can do what I want to do. Both lists are surprisingly long.
I could take a nap at this very moment. An early morning nap. When did those stop?
I feel all over the place -- even more than I usually am.
Maybe I simply need more coffee.
I have played with the idea of changing the name of this blog to "My Crazy Daze." It seems to fit me better lately.
I am eternally grateful for my loved ones, family and friends.
The pain is now behind my left eye, and I guess I should make my bed since the sheets are dry.
Hey, that rhymed!

March 29, 2011

Easter Basket

Today I am over at Today's Housewife talking about Easter baskets. I shared a tutorial and showed my results of following the tutorial. Fun and Easy. Go check it out, and if you decide to follow the tutorial yourself, or have a great idea for Easter baskets be sure to leave a note and let us know!

March 25, 2011

Conundrums

Two issues that I have come upon in the past day or two. The first a craft, the second storage.

This was to be a braided rug. In fact, it was this tutorial that I was following. Now whether it didn't work out because the braid was too tight, or I did it in my lap rather than a flat surface, I can't tell you. What I do know is it didn't work out. If you didn't notice, in the picture is an arrow point to the area which simply would not lay down flat. I had caught it bubbling like this earlier, but thought it I kept going it might work out okay. It didn't, so I ripped the seams and then unbraided as well.

Now I have these six balls of fabric and I am at a cross-roads. Do I try again, braiding the fabric again, and work on a flat surface? Or do I try crocheting a rug, like can be found at This Vintage Chica? I honestly do not know at this time. I like the braided style. That picture is A.MAZ.ING. Thankfully there is no deadline looming for this, so it will wait until I know which way I want to go. Any thoughts?

 

 
The other conundrum deals with these four pictures above. The bottom two are pics in the extra room which is where I used to stuff my craft storage in the corner. That simply couldn't work because I needed to get up at table level rather than on the floor, and it was simply put a MESS. Now, the pics are of the two book shelves on either side of the door. The top two pics show where I put all my craft storage in the dining room. My ultimate goal was to find some type of amazing piece of furniture where I could store everything. I won't leave it in the Rubbermaid containers, that's simply all I have right now. Well, Captain suggested moving it back to the extra room and into the bookshelves. I would use baskets to store items.

I am torn. I would have to give up those books. I admittedly do not read these on a regular basis. There are some research books that we do use regularly and could make room for, but honestly, it seems I am quite emotionally attached to all of them. I did quite a bit of book destashing before and after we moved. I don't know if I can get rid of these remaining books. It seems... wrong. 

*big heavy sigh*
What do you think about this one?

Half a book?

Do you think it would be wrong to list a book on my reading list, if I only read HALF of it?? *sigh* Yes, me too. And so, this will be the second post that came out of this book, and it's not going to go on my list. Oh me, Oh my!

50 People Every Christian Should Know by Warren Wiersbe

Would you like to know what surprised me most as I read through the half of the biographies I did read through? How much I learned about people I knew which allowed me to admire them for various reasons of which I had not known, and the number of people I thought I would admire but simply couldn't stand by the end of their chapter. I can sum up what made the difference, and that is those who were so judgemental and harsh simply rubbed me the wrong way. Those who were focused on God and unity with other Christians made me want to be more like them.

For example, I did not know that George Whitefield started the movement which began the Methodist Church. He was the leader of the Methodist movement for quite a bit of time in the beginning, but gave that position up and handed it to the Wesley's. Why? Because a division was growing between the Armenians and the Calvinists. Whitefield and the Wesley's were on opposite sides of this discussion, and the Wesley's chose to take a stance on it in public through their preaching. This caused even more division, and Whitefield would rather hand the reigns of the movement over to the Wesley's than cause a division.

And I must say, it is sad to admit, that I did not write one note down regarding Charles Spurgeon. I can't tell you anything about what stood out to me regarding his ministry. I wish I had at least written down what I didn't like, for now I feel I am opinion-less with a negative slant. I was truly excited to read about him for I have heard his name mentioned often. What I think remember I shouldn't say, because it might not actually be attributed to him after all.

The one lesson I got from reading this book, and 131 Christians Everyone Should Know (which I DID finish), is that there have been a lot of extracurricular beliefs within the Christian religion over the expanse of time. I have read about people who fought for their views dogmatically. I have read about people who loved God by taking care of their family. I have read about people who selflessly gave of themselves. I read about many people who relied on Christ and yet still struggled with depression and insecurities. I have read about people who lived a monastic life, a hermit's life, and people who preached to thousands. I read about people who thoroughly relied on God and God alone, and those who appealed to the masses to help further their ministry. What I have learned is that so much of what we argue over is not important. And so often we can be wrong. And maybe, just maybe, His thoughts and His ways really are higher than we can imagine.

It was a good book, and I would suggest reading it to give you a good broad brush stroke of the Christian Religion and the people thereof. The author suggests extra reading material on each person for further study. Maybe I'll put it on hold again and whoever took it from me through the library will have to give it back so that I can finish it. ;) I will say that the author definitely let his preferences and opinions show through on his writing, which surprised me for biographies.

March 24, 2011

Today....

is HIS day....3/24/11I tried to make the day special and fun with emails through out the day to make him smile and laugh. And then we used the new grill, or he did, with the new grill tools and we made this for supper...Birthday dinner The green beans, cheese, potatoes (which were a little under done), and I got some tomato slices which were simply yummy. On top of the steaks is caramelized onions with cilantro....cilantro and onion starting carmelized A little something I picked up at a certain cooking school. It was all delish.

Happy Birthday, my love! I hope it was as special as you are to me!!

March 23, 2011

An example of what...

Lately I have been hesitant to take stories from the Bible to use as examples. I know fully well that you could find examples of all sorts of things in there, and not all of it are ways we should want to live. But when you take the story in the Bible as a whole, generally you can figure out if it is an example to follow, or not.

David has several examples in his story of both. I'm pretty sure no one would suggest falling in love with another person's spouse and then having that person killed after trying to cover up the adultery, but David is way more than this one story.

Another story of David that caught my eye recently took place when Absalom, David's son, attempted to take over David's kingdom. David and his entourage left the city, and on the way out there was a man who was cursing David and throwing rocks at them. One of the men with David asked to take care of this person, and don't you know how grating it would be to have to listen to him? I would want to "take care" of him, too. But David's response?

2 Samuel 16:10
"But the king said, “Why are you sons of Zeruiah always interfering and getting in the way? If he’s cursing, it’s because God told him, ‘Curse David.’ So who dares raise questions?”"
 
I will admit that my first reaction is to simply want to be like David, learn to turn the other cheek, and allow God to defend me. But when I take a second look, my heart asks about God's character that is being shown here. Does God allow or call people to curse us? When we are hurt by someone is it God's hand?
 
There is part of me that simply wants to wash over this second part and go back to the first reaction, but if I don't face the questions then they are never answered. So, what does this say? Because honestly, I have a hard time even typing the words "God is the reason for pain" without feeling REALLY sacrilegious. If that is to be said, it seems it should be whispered, but look at what David says here. "If he's cursing, it's because God told him, 'Curse David.'" What do I do with that?
 
I know, this gets dangerously close to the edge of predestination. Where is free will? What play does free will have on people? Is everything caused by God, or does He allow things to happen? Is it simply there is no one answer for every situation??
 
There is a big hoopla going on in the Internet world about a new book that has recently been released. There are arguments flying around, accusations hitting marks, and sarcasm flowing freely. And yet, where is the discussion and the talk? Because honestly, just like with predestination/freewill I understand both sides of love/justice. My mind argues both sides, and it leaves me wondering where I stand.
 
Does God tell others to curse? Or do others take it upon themselves to curse? And is this the question anyway or simply a way to make myself more confused? Maybe, it's not trying to decide the motive of the other person, or trying to understand my God completely, but rather this is simply an example of how I am to respond. Because honestly, I can't control what other people do, and I will never be able to fully understand my God. What I can do is control myself and my thinking. And maybe, just maybe, that's simply what David is doing here.
 
I don't know if I answered the second reaction, or if I simply fell back to the first reaction. I do know that I don't know everything, and so my mind will most likely mull this question over more. I may not find answers that please everyone, but then I'm not some great theologian trying to convince, or an author trying to sell books. Simply a woman trying to know her God.

March 22, 2011

The Belt I mentioned

I told you! Now, I don't know where I saw this tutorial, but it is SO EASY! My ribbon was only one sided so I first sewed two lengths together before I attached it to the D-rings. Scissors and sewing machine were all I needed. Easy peasy, and I wore it all day long. :)




This seriously took me maybe 15 minutes. 

Just in case

I am on craft overload. Oh, it's not that I have done too much. Simply put, I have researched too much. My brain is on overload with the things I want to do, and invariably something comes up on a daily basis as well. So, I have decided to take a break from the researching and move forward with some of the ideas I have. Like, recycled paper bag Easter baskets, a cloth rug, a belt, egg take alongs, more headbands, a wreath, some outdoor globes, a quilted picture renovation, a possible kindle cover, and I have some chalkboard paint I picked up on sale just in case.

I have plenty to keep me moving and going along, and I will share with you the final outcomes, both good and bad. It's more fun that way, yes? Oh, speaking of, a little update on my purse renovation, the flower kept falling off. I had to get some super glue to hold the petals on, and I keep it in my purse right now just in case. LOL It makes me laugh, I still like it, and now I'm wondering if I should have revamped one of the larger purses rather than the smaller one. But we are where we are, and we'll see what tomorrow shall bring.

I'm currently working on the rug, and I may run in to make a belt for today, because that's how I fly, but I'm excited to share what I end up making in time. I hope you will continue to stick with me and see how things end up, just in case you get inspired.

And feel FREE to leave me links for things you know will inspire me, just in case I run out of ideas on my own. :)

March 21, 2011

A reason and a reminder

3/19/11

Captain and I have been married for nineteen years today. I have been so blessed to have him in my life and to be a part of his. Has it been a cakewalk? Is life ever a cakewalk? But we were willing to work together, and put some hard work in sometimes, a lot of forgiveness, and love that is a choice and decision, and by God's Grace we are still holding hands as we walk this path of life. What a complete blessing!

The box up above? That's from some bar stools we got this past weekend. I opened the box to put them together, and there barely visible was a footprint from someone who had touched the box along the way. I'm sure it happened at the warehouse. I'm sure the person stepping there didn't even think about what he had done. I'm sure he didn't even notice the footprint there, and to be honest I was surprised I did.

It made me think.

How many times do we step into people's lives and not think about the types of footprints we leave behind? How often do we stumble through, kicking, stomping, and creating havoc? How often do we tiptoe through thinking we wont be noticed? How often do we simply stand, or run away, or walk beside? Because they all leave different types of footprints behind.

In my life I have had many people leave footprints. I have people who are still leaving their mark. I am grateful that when I look beside me Captain is leaving his footprints next to mine. I am grateful for the friends who are there, and the friends who were. I'm betting many of us don't ever consider what kind of footprints we leave, and I know there have been times I haven't thought about it. There are also times we over think. Both to the detriment of all, I believe. But the fact is, the footprints are there, and they don't wash away.

So many times, like the footprint on the box, we don't notice them until we take the time to notice. And sometimes I take my Captain for granted. He's steady and sure when I need that hand. I'm crazy and unexpected when he needs a little of that. We are similar and different, and I forget how important he is in my life. But every once in a while something arises that helps us remember exactly how important, and how much we cherish. Today is one of those days. The footprint was one of those things.

Allow my anniversary with my Captain to be a reason that you are reminded of the love in your life. Allow the footprint on the box to be a reminder of all those who have left their mark in your life. And let them know how much they mean to you.

March 19, 2011

Creativity Therapy

Psalm 4:6
"Why is everyone hungry for more?
“More, more,” they say. “More, more.”
I have God’s more-than-enough,"

At different times of my life I have lived unsatisfied.
With others, myself, my path, the sun, the day, the work, my hair...
you name it.

In doing so, I would feel guilty afterwards.
Where is my gratefulness?
Where is my hope?
Where is my joy?
Where is my faith?
And yet, I would find myself there again.
I may yet again.
Probably will.

But I know within my head, and my heart,
that despite the way I see my life some days
I am more blessed than I can imagine.

And the crafts I have been doing lately?
They have taken up so much time
and so much thought.
And instead of lamenting
I am creating
and this is joyful beyond degree.

So, while this may never become
a solely crafting website
I am grateful that I now know
that the busier my hands are
the less my mind works
and sometimes my mind
needs a break.

It's all a fine balance
but when the negatives start overwhelming
I have a plan
a path
a hope
that God created me
to create
and within those moments
I let go of the bad
the ugly
the whining
the selfishness

And for all of this I am so grateful.
So. Grateful.

I don't need more.
God has given me His more-than-enough.

March 18, 2011

Taste of Home

Photo064.jpgEvery time I move my habits change. It's the best time for me to start new things, because it's so easy for me. One thing that changes without thought is how and what I cook. Sometimes this may change for no reason whatsoever, but I can always count on it with a move. This move brought out the Taste of Home recipes. My mom graciously gifted me with several of their magazines for Christmas, and of course, there is the amazing website as well. I have been using new to me recipes since we moved here. We never know what it's going to taste like, but I have been rarely disappointed.

In their magazine, and on the website as well, was an advertisement for the Taste of Home Cooking School. I thought I would look to see where and when they were doing it, by the off chance there would be one close by. Ten minutes away! Truly, that's as far as we had to drive. And we only had to wait two weeks to order the tickets. It was meant to be. :)

I went with my mom and sister, and we had a great time. The only thing I would say negatively, is if you are ding a cooking school and expect people to get there before 6 and it lasts until 930, you MAY want to consider feeding us. Thankfully we did grab a small bite to eat before hand, but golly it would have been rough if we hadn't. They made ten different recipes and they all looked pretty scrumptious! We're planning on making something from the Cooking School Magazine full of amazing recipes for supper tomorrow night. Be jealous, very jealous. heeeee

Photo062.jpgThings I learned from the cooking school:
  • the difference between broth and stock
  • how to rinse rice (from my mom)
  • how to make cheese baskets
  • how to make cake flour if you only need a small amount
  • how to chiffonade
  • how to temper eggs
  • that carmelizing onions really does take some time
  • that cooking specialists don't necessarily follow the recipe to a T

March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

It must be like a silent obsession. One day I may need to seriously consider and look at it, but right now I must be knee deep and therefor it does not matter. Last night, sitting in the chair watching Survivor and then our DVR'd Biggest Loser with the family, I was restless. I knew that the next day was St. Patrick's Day, and what you need to know is that I normally ignore this holiday. If I acknowledge holidays it's with a mere passing thought, and that is all. But last night something overtook me.

I had to make something. I had to make something green. And it needed to be cute. So, I took two strips of material, some cross-stitch floss and made another fabric flower. I know I suggested solid fabric when making these, but I went with what I had. I don't think it's that hard to see either!

Fabric flower pin


I attached it to a pin, but after putting it on my t-shirt I knew I didn't want to wear it that way. I simply didn't want to pin it to my shirt. So I contemplated, and considered. Headband? (Those don't work for me everyday. I needed a sure thing) Crocheted scarf? (No way near time enough even if I am fast.) Knitted scarf? (Like I could learn that quickly.) And then, this morning, after I had attempted doing a quick crochet and frogged it, I remembered some scarves I crossed paths with that were made out of t-shirts. I did a little search, and found the perfect tutorial.

Tshirt Scarf with flower pin


Quick, easy, and cute! I grabbed two of the maternity shirts my sister gave me, and went to work. And now, NOW I am prepared for St. Patrick's Day. How about you?
Happy St. Patrick's Day

March 16, 2011

Purse Altered

Old pursesCurrent purse in the need of a refresher.I had a simple black purse.  I liked it, but what I was really liking were the new purses that had the flowers on the sides. They pulled to me, and as Captain can assuredly tell you, I have a thing for purses. But this craft bug? It bit, hard. You see, I also had these old red and orange purses at the top of my closet, and I wondered if it were possible for me to make a flower out of them for my purse. I looked at crafts online, tutorials galore, and unfortunately while the ideas seeped into my brain, the links did not get saved. Oh wait, let me check my Stumble. Well, how frustrating. I really do want to give credit where it is due, so let me say that the way I designed this flower was thought of by someone else. I simply picked up her thoughts and ran with them.

Sides cut out.The first thing I did was cut away the extra fabric on the old purses. I wasn't sure how I would go about it, and thought I would use both colors originally. It turned out that I only used the red, so I saved the orange/brown color for another craft on another day. I turned the leather over and using the top of a small hand lotion bottle and a sharpie, I drew a multitude of circles on the back. I started cutting out the circles, then cut them in half, and laid the flower out as I went so that I didn't cut more circles than I needed. I actually had some red left over for another project on another day as well.

In the midst.Here's how everything looked while I waited for my glue gun to warm up.  See the circle on the purse, you can almost make it out, that was my starting point for the petals. I simply glued the half circles down around the circle, and continued going in rows until the entire area was covered up. When/If you do this, make sure that each petal covers the edge of the petal prior, and try to alternate the petals as the rows go.

Almost doneSome of my petals alternated, and some didn't, as you can see in my nearly finished picture.  I used a small circle of felt in the middle. I then pulled the zipper pull off, and used the charm I had previously attached to the back of the purse. I went around for half the day like this, trying it out, testing it. I realized that the gray center sort of jumped out at me, and it needed a simple red circle covering it. Then my sister, genius that she is, asked about the straps on the old purse and if I was going to do anything with them. Well, after a little looking, and cutting, one of the red straps from the old purse was the new strap on this purse. It nearly simply buttoned on!

Final (with a little inspiration from my sister)

On the shoulder I figured that if I didn't like the way the purse turned out I would go buy a new one, because that was what I was wanting anyway. Now, I get the new purse, the thrill of it being uniquely mine, and the fun of having it actually work out! Sometimes it's worth the risk!

EDIT:: The hotglue didn't work so hot with the flower. It started peeling off the purse from the top. I used some super glue to put it back in place and am hoping that works. If I need to stitch it on I really have to start all over.

March 15, 2011

Today's Housewife

I am so excited about this!! The girls over at Today's Housewife have asked me to post on a more regular basis. I'll be posting about hobbies, and let me tell you it will be more than just crocheting, though you can guarantee there will be yarn stuffs as well. Today I'm over there talking about Prayer Shawls and Blankets.

The best part is that when they asked me something happened within me as well. I started saying yes to all the projects I wanted to do but simply didn't. The scarf yesterday is an example of that. You should see my craft list of to do's!!! I am simply thrilled to be making and doing more, though I need to relocate that balance again! LOL

You'll see how some of these craft ideas turn out here and over at Today's Housewife. I am simply tickled pink that I get to be over there more often. I hope you'll join me!! The girls are great, and they have way more than hobbies to read about. Go check them out.

March 14, 2011

Wrap It Up and Put a Bow on It

While doing a little window shopping in a nearby store, I spotted the cutest little scarf. It was perfect for the spring, because it was light weight knit. It was even light enough it could be worn in the summer as a simple accessory. The coolest was how easy it was to make. There was no seaming or sewing involved. They did have a little print on the end of the scarf, but other than that I knew it was quite doable.

material

When I got home with this nugget in the back of my mind I crossed paths with some left over knit material from the baby slings I made my sister. The difference between my knit and the one at the store was theirs was colored on both sides, and mine was patterned on only one side.

stitch

I folded the material lengthwise, right sides together, and then I seamed up the long side only. I used a zig zag stitch because when I made the slings I realized that a simple straight stitch with this material made it more like a basting stitch. Not what I wanted. The zig zag worked beautifully.

Turning the scarf right side out I simply cut the ends so that it had fringe. These could be as wide or as narrow as you prefer, but I made mine short and narrow.

rose

I knew that what I wanted was a little fun with the scarf. I decided to make a flower, using this amazing tutorial, and some black and white material I had sitting in one of my storage boxes. I love the way it turned out, but note for future creations: a solid colored material will show the flower better. With the print things get a little lost, but I think you can see the flower in the final picture. The pieces of red string? In the tutorial she uses fabric glue in the first step, but I didn't have any fabric glue. I decided to stitch it instead and I wanted to use the red for little pops of color.

With a small piece of material that matches the rose, I stitched the material into a ring no wider than the flower. I stitched the flower to one side of the ring and through the scarf. This makes a loop on the back side so the other end of the scarf can go through rather than tying a knot. It would be just as easy to secure the flower to a pin, and pin the scarf together.

finished product


I really was tickled with this project, and the fact that it was SO easy was icing on top. I may make a few more scarves for accessories, and at this price and ease I could give a few away as gifts!

March 12, 2011

Some things are going on....

Don't let the silence around here fool you! I have been busy busy busy. Mostly with plans and dreaming, but I totally think that counts. I've been doing a little purchasing and doing as well, and I will share that soon enough. I'll share it all eventually. I always do.

This coming week the munchkin and I will be taking a Spring Break. It's coming at the perfect time. I realized we haven't had more than a day off  here and there since we moved, and that is a long time. (It's surprising to realize how long.) I really can't complain though, so don't see it as that. I truly know how blessed we are to have the life we have. Captain works hard, and God has provided us much. It's simply time to rest, and that is just as important as the work. I'll probably do some organizing, movie watching, crafting, and I'll pop in here as well. Make sure to drop back on Tuesday for a super cool announcement, and on Thursday I'm totally going to a cooking class so update on that Friday.

One little note to take with you: if you are planning a project make sure you do all your research before you head to get the supplies. It simply saves you trips. :) Now, to continue to live this day!

March 10, 2011

The sky shine's brightly.

006This morning the sun came up with nothing blocking it's view. It's golden rays fell across the room and lit up the windows.

I forgot how much I missed that bright blue sky. I forgot how the bright sun makes everything shine a little more and seem a little more clear. I forgot how deeply I can breathe on mornings like this.

I see the blooms on the trees, the new leaves bursting forth, the grass and flowers waking up from their winter slumber. It's a new beginning, in the middle of a week, in the middle of the month, at the end of the first quarter of the year. A moment, like no other, not special in and of itself, but wonderful and amazing, and a gift.

Excitement at what the horizon brings. Joy in the looking forward. Peace from the warmth of the rays.

I'm so grateful for lots of second chances to learn what God is trying to teach me. I am so grateful that His love, grace, and mercy define me. I am grateful I remember this.

I breathe out the mistakes of the past, and I breathe in the grace for today. I smile at the crisp air which I know will turn warm as the sun's rays shine through it.

007 008 009

March 7, 2011

Today

I woke up with Monday on my lips, and my brain began to fall back into the wrote "poor me" for the new "work" week had started. But something from my heart sat up and shouted a resounding, "No!" For I knew that this was a blessed gift. One I didn't want to take for granted, but one I wanted to celebrate.

To turn water into wine, and what is common into what is holy,
is indeed the glory of Christianity.
Frederick William Robertson

This is what I want to do with this life that I have been given. I do not especially assume that anything I do will reach someone and inspire them to live for Christ. I do not expect to write words which sink to people's hearts and souls. I only ask that I live this life as if it were holy. With times cut out, breaths taken, choices made, all for the the glory of Christ. I fail. I fall. I do not keep this before me on a daily basis. But I long to take "what is common into what is holy." I long to do what is needed each day with the right attitude and heart.

I never undertake a hymn without first asking the good Lord
to be my inspiration in the work that I am about to do.
Fanny Crosby

How often I enter my days, my moments, my choices and do not carry my Lord with me. How often I forget that He is there waiting for me to look to Him and call on Him. He is my heart's desire, when I consider and think about it. Yes, the Lord has done great and amazing things in my life. He has loved me more than I can say. He has used me in ways unimaginable. And yet I forget. And I take steps without him. How silly and careless when such a resource and friend is by my side.

His own hand planted me here, and I will abide
till the great Master of the Vineyard think fit to transplant me.
Samuel Rutherford

In order to live for Him, I must remember I am living with Him. He is my Lord, my Father, my Savior, and each day is a gift. As I fill it with laundry, schooling, cooking, and cleaning I want to live where God placed me with all of my heart for Him. I want to do the best I can because He has asked me to do it.

If thou meanest to enlarge thy religion,
do it rather by enlarging thine ordinary devotions than thy extraordinary.
Robert Murray McCheyne

And so I am reminded time and time again, over and over by the "spiritual giants of the faith" that I am Esther, placed here for a purpose. I am Ruth, set to love those who are in my life. I am David, devoted to God through a heart of passion. I am Moses, finding the holy in unexpectedly common places. How can I ask for more?

*all quotes from 50 People Every Christian Should Know by Warren W. Wiersbe

March 5, 2011

Rock on Banana Berry

I made this for dessert last night, and it hit a spot I didn't know needed hitting. It was heavenly and delish, and oh my yummy! I could have divided the servings and had 8 instead of 4, but chose to splurge instead. So glad! We all loved it, we all finished it, and as one of the others said, "It rocks!"

Rock on Banana Berry1 package of banana cream pudding
1 package of strawberry jello
1 pint heavy whipping cream
3 cups frozen berries
vanilla flavoring
sugar
graham cracker crumbs

Crush the crumbs to smithereens and place in the bottom of four dishes. Make the banana cream pudding, and divide between the four containers. Chill until set.

Allow the berries to thaw, and then puree with a hand mixer or blender.

Pour half the whipping cream into a bowl, add some vanilla and a little sugar, then whip until peaks form. Do not over-whip.

Combine the jello mix with 1.5 cups of boiling water. Add the whipped cream to the jello.

Layer the berries and then the jello on top of the pudding layer.

Freeze for one hour, refrigerate for 2 hours.

Prepare the rest of the whipping cream in the same manner as you did the first half, and place a dollop on top of the dessert right before you serve.

March 4, 2011

a new day

With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts.
Eleanor Roosevelt

3/3/11

I wake up to the kiss of a loved one, and the dim light he tries to keep out of my eyes. He loves me.
I wake up to the idea that it's a new morning, a new day, a new start. All fresh.
I wake up with coffee, and breakfast, thankful for the air I breath.
I wake up with the Word, refreshing and reminding. He loves me.

I struggled the past day. It seems I do nothing slowly. And yesterday I had a bit of a identity crisis. But only to where my online presence was concerned. I also had lunch with my sister and mother and laughed so hard my sides ached and I cried. I spent time with two boys who were genuinely caring of one another, and that was like a fresh breath of air itself. I lived life with Captain, had long talks with him, and worked through that crisis with him. And I am grateful for this life I live.

I seem to want to use fresh clean slates a lot. To wipe everything clear and start anew. My thought was to do so with this blog, again. But completely. Start a new blog with a quirky name, and a catchy look. Start writing in a new place where I could put the me I am without fear. But I chose to stay. And y'all can look back and see my crazy, and I assure you if you stay with me you will see it again. But the reason for this blog is not to present myself as an amazing miracle of awesomeness that you can admire. That would be impossible. My blog is like me. Full of different ideas, thoughts, plans, and acts. It's all part of the dance, the moving forward, the stepping back, and sometimes simply turning around.

Captain says that if this blog were to be more like the me he knows, then it needs to not change too much. But maybe not be so serious, introspective, and to stop working so hard to fix me. I'm not sure I know how to live that way! LOL But at the same time, I do. I simply need to share more, and while some of you see the 2-3 posts a day recently and wonder if you can keep up, please know that in sharing more I will actually be sharing less as well. It's all a weird jumble of life, right?

Thanks for bearing with me, saying a silent prayer, and not thinking I'm a true looney. And Captain, thank you. You are simply an amazing strength and support in my life, and I appreciate the love you give me.

March 3, 2011

THESE WORDS!

*Make no presuppositions about whether I was/am a "good girl" or not. LOL Simply go watch the video and pre-order the book if you are interested.*
*Don't you just love that disclaimer?? ROFL*

They were on another post, and I removed them. I was trying to be funny. Trying to be mysterious. Trying to make you wonder who I am, and in the process I got myself off balance.
 
I may be able to breathe now.

the day

You can become blind by seeing each day as a similar one. Each day is a different one, each day brings a miracle of its own. It's just a matter of paying attention to this miracle.

Paulo Coelho

I have felt scattered, and that is why I shared the quote from this morning. I need to find my regular paths which are designed for me. I also need to do this because that is how I will see the beauty in the day. If I am trying to be someone I'm not, whatever form that takes, it is a struggle. And while I may add different facets to my person, it still has to be my person. Otherwise what I see when I look at me wont look right. It will seem too similar to someone else. And I'm different, and I'm a miracle. And it's a matter of me paying attention to exactly what that should be.

Paths

As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.


Henry David Thoreau

March 2, 2011

Consideration

This was on my library's facebook status this morning:
Happy Birthday to Theodor Seuss Geisel - aka Dr. Seuss. An interesting tidbit regarding his name - a collaborator of his once wrote, "You're wrong as the deuce, And you shouldn't rejoice, If you're calling him Seuss. He pronounces it Soice." What is your favorite Dr. Seuss book?
When I read that this morning I smiled, because it seemed to represent so many things I have been thinking and considering lately. Just a little research led me to the fact that Seuss actually went with the Americanized version of his name (deuce) because it reminded others of Mother Goose, and it was how everyone was pronouncing it. It was HIS name, and yet rather than debate something, he simply went with the flow. Was it his name wasn't important, or was it that it didn't matter to his end goal?

So often we find ourselves arguing things which are debatable. Instead of trying to understand each others opinions or perspectives, we attack and go in with all our defenses up. Why do we do that? Are we that scared that what we believe might actually be wrong?

I have followed a variety of conversations in my past, who hasn't, and I have watched people listen and I have watched people build walls. I have done both as well. What I know now is that we are not going to get along if we continue to put up those walls and fight tooth and nail for something which, really?? In the scheme of things, they don't matter. Plus, let's be honest, if I am yelling and defensive and argumentative no one is going to listen to me. We either travel a two way street, or put up blockades going both ways.

I'm ready to be a little more like Dr. Seuss. I think it will all make us a little more humble and ready to listen, and isn't that a good thing? Instead of assuming, attacking, and defending, maybe it's time for all of us to ask questions, listen, and try to understand. Can we not allow one another to do something differently, or do we have to demand to have it our way? Who knows, the way someone else does, thinks, or sees something might be a little better than how we do it. Or it very well may not make a difference regarding our end goal.

Come September

I know, September seems eons away, but we are already in March! Before you know it autumn will be upon us. And I know, most of you are in the throws of Anne's book right now, but I wanted you to know because by September One Thousand Gift's will be a reference you return to often, and you may be looking for the next read. Emily at Chatting with the Sky will be releasing her book in September, and I am looking forward to it. I thought you might as well! It's called Grace for the Good Girl and if you follow the last link you can see her video about it.

March 1, 2011

the next day

With each step I take.
Each time I reach out.
The pain is evident, and courses through me.
My desire to walk across the room leaves me planted where I am.
Or facing the pain that it will entail.
Silly pain.
Frustrating pain.
Ugly pain.
Healing pain.
It seems it would be easier to sit still.
To do nothing.
To go back.
And to think this is after only one day?
My heart fails me, my mind freaks out, and I question how.
How can I move forward as I had planned to?
Because what I want to do is forget it all.
I don't care if this is simply healing in progress.
I don't believe I will get stronger.
I feel as if I am as strong as I am going to get.
For I am weak.
And I will fail.
But then it crosses my mind, God whispers into my ear...
as your body aches when it heals, so does your heart.
don't stop that process.
keep going and you'll get stronger.
And I exhale
and wonder how long I had been holding my breath.
And I am a little disgusted
at how hard this first step is for me.
And I am amazed once again
at God's grace in my life.

Love

If God is a God of love
unconditional, all accepting, waiting
If God is a God of love who meets us where we are
Then why do we feel the need to change people before we introduce them to Him?

If it doesn't matter what we do
because we are forgiven
If they will be forgiven too
then shouldn't we focus on loving
and let God and the Holy Spirit focus on convicting?

Accepting God's Grace into our life, means that it requires responsibility.
God is a God of love, and He is Holy.
He expects us to "Go and sin no more."

When do we stop being a group of judgemental, overbearing, follow my rules type of people?
When do we start being a group of forgiven, loved, working hard to follow Christ type of people?
Because when we are focused on changing them we are no longer focused on God changing us.

The Law is there to show us our need.
The need of inability.
For we can not save ourselves.
We have to rely on another.
On another who loves us unconditionally,
accepts us as we are,
and is waiting for us to turn to Him.
And then He changes us.
Not out of punishment, or anger
but out of love.

Because God is a Holy God of Love.