Friday, June 29, 2012

InstaFriday

It is Friday and I am linking up with Jeanett from Life Rearranged for InstaFriday! I am trying a collage today because I had SO many pictures from our trips...hope you are not overloaded! :)

I will work my way around the collage and explain...starting at top, left to right, then down the side, across bottom from right to left and up left side to the middle picture...confusing enough for you? :)

*Caroline wanted to buried in the sand so her cousins obliged her. *playing bocce ball on the beach *I got a kick out of this one-cops around here like to park on the side of the road and make people think they are tracking speeds but the car is empty.  Someone thought it would be cute to tie a balloon to the car.  :) *my dad forgot his classes at lunch and had to borrow mine.  *Will tried to get Caroline's bowling ball which got stuck in the gutter behind the bumpers--the floor was to slick! *Caroline doing cartwheels on the beach *girl cousins! *Georgie, my sister's dog, hiding from Kingston, my brother's dog *going to the pool *playing in the sand *cousin love *JOSH! * awesome sunset I captured on a drive

Ok...this next set is a REAL treat!  I have permission to post this of Anonymous, without hiding her face (I feel I should note here that permission was granted by her husband because these are SO funny).  The little girls were dancing and Anonymous' husband had given them an imaginary box they HAD to dance in.  Then he would give them three seconds to dance out of the box but at the end of the three seconds, they had to get back "in the box".  Anonymous wanted to join in. 

Top left picture is her beginning to dance in the box.  Top Right is her first second out of the box.
Bottom left is still out of the box...                              Bottom Right is back in the box!

Hilarious...top right is my favorite. 

More cousins showed up yesterday so expect more pictures soon...this is my favorite time of the year.  All together--lots of noise--lots of love!

Have a GREAT Friday!!!

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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

What I Wore Wednesday

It is Wednesday!!!! Yeah! That means that, yes, I am putting pictures of myself online. I promise it is not because I am conceited...it is for accountability and great advice. We are a group of bloggers who post pictures of outfits in order to keep us out of our pjs and yoga pants! We link up with Lindsey and get GREAT ideas from each other. Join us!

I am in the middle of a large road trip.  We left home (without daddy :(   ) in order to take Will to basketball camp in NC.  We left last week to head to the beach where my parents live for some awesome beach time...and this was my traveling outfit.  I know you can hardly see my headband...but it is actually not mine.  It is my niece's and I just borrowed it.  :)  

This is a SPECIAL picture because I am wearing my VERY FIRST ANTHROPOLOGIE shirt!  So excited!
The mirror I was using to take my pictures is part of an antique piece of furniture in my mom's house.  I think I need to switch mirrors.  Time has taken its toll on this mirror!
This was a day I thought we were taking the kids to the movie "Brave".  But then I had to go with my dad to pick up my nephew so it was a traveling outfit!
I put this on thinking it would keep me cool.  Then I stepped outside and realized it was COLD!  I had to add jeans and the pink sweater!  Brrr.  I think it is remnants of Debby from the Gulf.
Last week, I posted a picture on WIWW of my sister Anonymous.  She was dressed up nicely and going out on a date with her husband.  She said she thought I should show my readers what she REALLY looks like...on a daily basis.  White V-neck shirt that she bought in a six pack...I have no words for that...but I can't make her change her mind that it is not a good thing!  :)
Have a SUPER day and link up with us...I promise that this is fun!!!!  PROMISE!

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Sunday, June 24, 2012

A Very Present Help

Struggling through rough times can either break you or make you realize that nothing is possible without Christ leading your life.  There is that age old saying, "What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger."  I believe that saying but only in the context that if our faith is getting stronger we can survive.

This life is hard.  It drains us.  It leaves us empty and used.   It takes and takes and takes and never thinks about giving back.  It is overwhelming and full of many opportunities to trip and fall.  It can be discouraging--just writing that list has put me in a bad mood.  :)  There is hope though....

Because our God is bigger than all of that.  Our God does not cower in the face of the evil one who would love nothing more than to bring us down.  Our God is not intimidated by the mountains we see in our lives.  Our God wants us to call to Him, to lean on Him and ultimately to trust Him to work it all out for good according to His perfect will for our lives. 

So no matter what storm you are facing, or what decision has to be made or even what awesome life changing event just took place, remember that as long you hold tight to His Hand, He will lead through to His blessings and mercy. 

As you walk on the path of life, remember who He is and be thankful that He never leaves you to figure it all out on your own.  God laid the words below on my heart as I walked through an uneasy time and so I share them with you as an encouragement.  He loves you. And He wants what is best and what is good for you.  Trust Him to carry that plan out until you see it completed.


You are the very present help when my life is upside down.
You are the safety net I cling to when in my struggles I start to drown.


You are my constant companion when the road is long and dark.
You are the colors bursting forth when life's canvas is plain and stark.


You are the laugh that bubbles up when instead I'd rather cry.
You are the comfort in my struggles when all I can mutter to you is "Why?"


You are the loving arms of a friend who knows exactly what I need.
You are the voice that I can follow when I need someone to lead.


You are the smile from a stranger that encourages me to carry on.
You are the sunrise of possibilities with each brilliant. miraculous dawn.


You are the only perfect example of how I should live my life.
You are the loving,  kind peacemaker in a world so full of strife.


You are forgiveness, grace and mercy to anyone who comes.
You are my Savior, my Redeemer, You are Jesus, God's own Son.


I am praying for you to have the most amazing day today, full of His blessings.

Love,

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Friday, June 22, 2012

Thankful?


I think being thankful is a concept that is being forgotten.  In a world where we are constantly bombarded with the idea that life is all about “me”, we easily can lose focus of what SHOULD matter instead of what we want to matter.  We were not put on this earth to pump up our own ego and to follow our own man-made plan.  We were put here as examples for Christ.  We are to point others toward Him, regardless of our circumstances, pain, or even joys.  If our attention is on anything other than honoring Him and His name, we are already off track.

But take heart, because this can EASILY be remedied.  We have only to utter very simple sentences of thankfulness to our Lord for our hearts to begin to change from a self focus to a Christ focus.  I will start with some sentences and I would LOVE for you to add your sentences to the comments.  

I am thankful you are the promise of  a new day full of blessings with each early morning sunrise.

I am thankful that you are always beside me and promise to never leave me or forsake me.

I am thankful that you are full of forgiveness, grace and mercy.

I am thankful that you can see what is ahead for me and have already made a way.

I am thankful that you are I AM and all I have to do is rest in you.

I am thankful for a Savior whose blood covers me wholly and completely.

I am thankful for the opportunities you give me to bless your name.

I am thankful for friends and family who encourage me on in my quest to know you more.


OK-now it is your turn...what are you thankful for?


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Thursday, June 21, 2012

Freedom

I think it is funny how God ties everything together in my life, no matter where I am.  Maybe funny is not the right word...maybe awesome should be there instead.

At home, my pastor---who has a beard now-which totally shocks me because I have NEVER seen him with facial hair in the 11 years I have known him--has been teaching on the difference between independence and freedom.  In a nutshell, we don't want to be independent (not subject to another's authority) but we do want freedom (exemption from external control) in Christ.

Let's face it...at first those two words seem interchangeable.  Don't argue with me, you know you have used them to mean the same thing in the past.  I have.  Our great nation fought for our independence from Great Britain so we could have freedom.  Or we could say, our great nation fought for our freedom from Great Britain so we could be independent.  See?  It works.

But not when you are talking about God. We do not want to be independent from God.  Why?  Because we need Him.  Life on our own (not subject to His authority) is a slippery slope that leads to pain and suffering and consequences we cannot imagine and definitely don't want to live through.  He did not create us to live independent lives.

He did, however, create us to live our lives in freedom.  Not freedom from all rules, rights or responsibilities, but freedom from the baggage of our sins chained to our wrists as we walk through life here on earth.  And that freedom is so worth giving up our independence. 

I left last Thursday to come to NC for basketball camp for Will (who, needless-to-say is asserting his independence at camp and loves having no parents around).  :)  We are staying with my sister.  We attended her church on Sunday and the pastor spoke on the new covenant that God created with us, as believers, in the New Testament.  This new covenant makes Jesus our High Priest (the one who intercedes for us) AND our King (ruler in our lives) and we have freedom because His precious blood covers over our sins so when God looks down on our hearts, He does not see the ugliness, but He sees Jesus. 

That,my friends, is freedom. 

So God took the lessons I have been learning for a month at home, knew exactly where I would be on Sunday, and continued to teach me all about what true freedom looks like.  He is an amazing God!


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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

What I Wore Wednesday

It's Wednesday and I am linking up with Linds over at The Pleated Poppy.  I have been out of town at my sister's house (Anonymous) and internet connections have been nasty.  :)  I was really hoping to have blogged more since it is summer, but that has not worked out.  I know you guys are missing my wisdom!  LOL

Anyway!  On with the show...


#1                                   #2                              #3                            #4                           #5
Shirt:   Loft                      Polo outlet               Belk                         LOFT                      Loft Outlet
Pants:   LOFT                   Kohl's                     NY&Co                   LOFT                      NY&Co
Shoes: Yellow Box            ????                       Yellow Box              ????                         flip flops


Now, below you will see Anonymous (and the fact that her face is covered is where she got her "name").  She does not like to show up on the blog...but she does like to give me a hard time if I haven't posted in a while.  Ironic, isn't it?  Well, she was going out on a date with her handsome hubby and I snapped her picture...isn't she cute?  I know.  She should do this more often...


                                                I have no idea what she is wearing (except the pants-
                                                they are from GAP) but when you can't see her face
                                                does it really matter what she is wearing??

Anyway, link up with us...it is loads of fun!

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Wednesday, June 13, 2012

What I Wore Wednesday

It's Wednesday! Yeah. Linking up with Lindsey...join us!

pleated poppy

Our weather has been rainy lately so if my outfits confuse you for summer in the south, that is why!
Shirt: LOFT outlet
Shorts: LOFT 
flops: Old Navy
Shirt: LOFT
Pants: boutique at the beach
Shoes: Lindsay Phillips switch flops
This was a semi-date night...had to go to a function with Mark.
Dress: Belk
Belt: came with a pair of capris
Shoes: Rack Room (love them)
This WAS date night.  It was cool and rainy.
Shirt: Belk
Jeans: LOFT
Shoes: Rack Room (close up below)

Shirt: NY and Co
Shorts: LOFT
Shoes?????
Tank: Costco
Shirt: Kohls
Jeans: LOFT
Flops: Old Navy
Big hair: Humidity

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Thursday, June 7, 2012

Lessons from Summer

I have only been out of school for one week...One week with no commitments.  Well, except for getting my kids to all of their various appointments, camps, play dates, etc....

And I have learned one thing: Schedule is key.

During the school year, I run a pretty tight ship (I say "pretty tight" because no one runs a tight ship like my sister Anonymous!) and we follow a schedule in order to not have days and days of melt downs.  I am not nearly as strict in the summer, mainly because being strict is exhausting to me.  Full out, totally exhausting.  But, we need a schedule.  Maybe my kids don't.  They enjoy sleeping in...but me...I need my schedule. 

I need to get up earlier than I have been and make sure I am not wasting my day (or rather, my morning, away). 

"Sow your seed in the morning, and at evening let your hands not be idle, for you do not know which will succeed, whether this or that, or whether both will do equally well." Ecclesiastes 11:6

I can see how this verse fits into my life when I sleep too much, grumble too much, plan too many activities for one sane person to fit into a day and pray a lot less.  This may be summer vacation (which I welcome warmly) but that does not mean my responsibilities as daughter of the King are on vacation too.  If anything, He should expect more from me throughout the day because I am not working.   I don't want to have idle hands (or feet) because I want to honor my Father as I move through my summer...

So one week into my summer, I am going to dedicate the rest of it to Him and to His glory.  Join me?





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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

What I Wore Wednesday!

It is Wednesday so that means a BUNCH of us are linking up with Lindsey to encourage each other to bust out of the yoga pants and get dressed (and maybe even accessorize!)!!!


Tank: Ann Taylor
Jacket: LOFT
Jeans: Buckle
Shoes: Lindsay Phillips
Tunic: Belk
Pants/shorts: NY & Co
Jewelry: Silpada

Tank: Target
Shirt: LOFT
Jeans: LOFT
flip flops: Old Navy

Tank: Belk
Jeans: Rockin' Revival
Shoes: Yellow Box
Jewelry: Silpada

Linking up with:

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Friday, June 1, 2012

InstaFriday

Linking up with Jeannett for a fun look into a week in phone pictures.

I did not post last week so I am including a picture I posted on twitter two weeks ago on our 16th anniversary!  I said, "We haven't changed a bit in 16 years."  hahahahahaha

Last Friday was Mark's 40th birthday!  We went to a great little Italian restaurant nearby with some great friends!  I had rushed home Friday to make Mark The Pioneer Woman's Big Chocolate Cake.  Took me forever but he has loved it for the past week...our waistlines are not loving us!
We went over to friends to celebrate Memorial Day and Mark was manning the grill when a fire broke out. He came back in asking for help and Lynn sent him out with a spray bottle...hilarious!  I love that it is pink!!!!
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