Monday, March 29, 2010

Sounds of Spring

Spring. Though often wet and gloomy, Spring is the beginning of beautiful awakenings.

If you listen you will hear creation sing.

The natural alarm clock of a bird singing her song from my back woods greets me each morning. The lukewarm breeze drifts in through the slight opening I have from my window and refreshes me. Throughout the day I get to see robins looking for food and other small animals jumping from limb to limb in the branches, excited to be out of hibernation. Sometimes the deer will graze in our backyard and from time to time our black bears roam through our neighborhood. As the sun begins to set, these lovely creations seem to know it's time to settle down for the night. They may puff up to warm themselves as the last of the suns beams stream towards them before heading "home." Each night is my favorite. I sit nestled in my bed, with a good book in hand and the glow of my bedside lamp on me; the tree frogs are emerging from the frozen mud and sing their song of chirps. On a cool, rainy night I'll leave my window open as the steady trickle of rain lulls me to sleep.

God was so correct when He said all creation would sing to Him even if we chose not to.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Look Around... Be Inspired

I just discovered this sight called lushlee which has been so fun to browse around. Seems similar to Etsy in what and how they offer their merchandise. I find this sight to be so inspirational and even encouraging at times when you want to be creative, but think your ideas may be cooky!!! So here's a little inspiration to all those home crafters (me included). So get crafty baby!

I've been inspired by several to make some of these decorative flowers. They seem to be "the things" this year. But why buy them when they are so easy to make. All you need is some fabric you like, needle and thread, and fabric stiffener spray. At a safety pin or glue on a pin to make a cute brooch, or sew onto clothing and other accessories. Haven't had a lot of free time as of late, but when I do, being creative is always a stress reliever for me.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Calm of the Cook

YES... you're correct. I have been a poo poo blogger and I too have missed my writing, though you get to be the judge of it's caliber.

This week has been quite hectic. I've been rising at 6am to train at the new job while getting home around 1am to finish my old job. Though, this week I have still found time to enjoy friends and family and of course cooking. Whenever I'm stressed my hands desire creativity and I find that pleasure often in cooking. So naturally after my accident I had the urge to cook. Cooking is so relaxing for me, enjoyable and can be done alone or as a social thing. This last week I made tomato blue cheese soup. I loved the recipe because of all the textures that were involved in making the soup; the tomatoes needed peeling and the blue cheese needed crumbling. The carrots needed chopping and the finished product needed blending. A bit of salt here and a splash of pepper here and the soup was ready to be devoured. I say it was the perfect fix for a rainy day, car-crash afternoon. Plus it lasted me into this week. That's the great thing about cooking at home.

If you're cooking for a family, you can always make extra and portion it out for the week; planning ahead is always helpful. And I do believe cooking should be fun, should be enjoyable and should not always feel like it's a chore. Find ways to enjoy it by preparing meals for the rest of the week at the beginning, middle or end of one week. Dot it with your family, do it with your friends. Food and gathering go hand in hand like forks and knives ;)

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Swish, Swish, SMACK!

You never think something like this will happen to you, because for the longest time it's never been you.

Today started out like any other day. After waking up, my stomach was craving an amazing breakfast (note my love of food), so I made some bacon and eggs, toasted a mini bagel, buttered it, then topped it with a light spread of Nutella. I skipped the fruit this morning, but had a yogurt instead along with some lemonade. I read the paper a bit as I ate then kissed my parents goodbye before heading off to work.

With my yellow raincoat and black rain boots, I headed out the door and began driving down some winding roads to work. There was silence in my car this morning, leaving room for me to be still, think and pray, and I was actually enjoying listening to the rain beating against my windshield. But that wouldn't be for long.

Before I could even finish taking in my next breath I hit a huge puddle and started to hydroplane. To the Left I swerved nearly hitting a guardrail, then unable to straighten, but able to avoid the guardrail I swerved to the right nearly sideswiping an SUV. At this point I thought I would be in better control, but when rubber doesn't meet the road, you're never in control. After this second swerve, I knew I was in God's hands; that SUV seemed to disappear, I did a complete 180, was facing traffic, then backed up on the side of the road, up a small hill. Unfortunately I smacked into a telephone pole on the passenger side and took out part of a huge road sign. But I thank God I'm ok, as well as anyone else who was driving near me. There's quite a bit of damage to the car, but insurance helps. Still NO fun.

I think I know now what it's like to be an ant living in an ant farm and having someone shake you all up.

One thing I thought about today was how it could have gone worse and I could have been with God today. Knowing that one day I will meet Him face to face has never been more real. One day, when I do meet Him, what will He say?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Something Wicked This Way Comes

There's something in my attic.

I think it's a mouse.

I first heard it last week as I was laying in bed trying to fall asleep....


At first, it freaked me out and I was ready to smash it if it came near me with my heavy duty mag light. If a heart could pound out of its chest, mine almost did. Yesterday I started hearing it from the ceiling of my living room, too. Hospitality is a love of mine, but it's time this uninvited guest LEAVE. I can only wonder just what he is doing up there. I need a trap.

OH!!! There he goes again...


Stay Tuned Friends

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Prayer Answered & Adventure Beginning

Christ said, "Do Not Worry." So Don't.

If you ask me, it seems like we humans like to complicate things... A lot. Why don't we more often listen to Christ who has told us not to worry? Matthew 6:25-34 is scripture I have held onto very tightly in my heart and mind this past year. I wasn't sure where I would be after my graduation in May "09 and even before that I had no clue. I did know that it would be extremely different than what I had planned for myself.

Throughout the summer I had some here and there jobs, took time off to live at Canadian L'Abri, and then the intense job search began. Though I majored in social work, I wasn't sure that it was something I wanted to have as a profession. Confusion swept through me and all I could cling to was God. He kept reminding me not to worry, that He will always provide, and I trusted and continue to trust Him. Career builder became my friend, I became an expert letter writer, have perfected my resume and my phone bill nearly went up with all the calls I made in persistence to agencies. Still nothing amounted for three months. This week all that changed.

Yep, I got a Job :)

Last week I walked into a beautiful hotel (I'll keep the name a secret online for privacy purposes, but ask in person and I'm happy to tell) and got an interview on the spot, which I was not expecting. It went so well and I walked out feeling so confident and excited. The job as a guest services agent just seemed fitting for me, but the following week was the longest week in my history. Four times I had called the hotel back and left two messages, only to finally be in touch with the office manager yesterday (3/9) who then offered me a second interview for today. Today went super, and I was "Welcomed Aboard," as the new guest services agent, as stated by the office manager.

I have so much thankfulness to God, who has promised to provide. This job is just a bonus because I already have all and more than I need.

Yuckcake...I mean cupcake

Starbucks. It's a household name, a place of convenience and to convene; a place to ponder and to and wander. They have decent coffee -- not my personal fave, but good in a pinch -- and TERRIBLE desserts. Today, with my gift card flipping between my fingers, I stood far enough away from the register, you know so the barista wouldn't interrupt my decisive monologue I had going on in my head. My taste-buddies were asking me to try something new, so figuring I had a gift card I didn't have much to lose.

I made my selection... A grande, iced, vanilla latte accompanied by a red velvet cupcake. It just spoke to me through the glass; it just looked so delicious and I haven't had a cupcake in a long time. The barista kindly handed me my selection and I strolled out to my car to head home. Not wanting to wait till I got home to eat it, I took a big bite right in the car to get the process started.


I was sorely disappointed. There wasn't much taste to it at all, and I could almost taste the red food coloring. Starbucks would never want me for an employee because my buddies are too honest. I'm sticking to homemade and learning to pray for wisdom from deceit... ik.

To all you lovely pastry chefs, bakers and coffee roasters... Keep baking and keep brewing.
We love you very much.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Surrounded by Diapers, Sippy Cups and the Occasional Fart

And no, I'm not talking about babies, though yes I have four baby cousins. I'm talking about that sad part of life called old age.

My grandparents' (Mom's parents) bodies are preparing to return to dust. It's a difficult thing to watch at times, but more than anything at this time I am reminded about how our lives are not our own. Just as babies require adornment, love and attention for every squeak and squawk they make, the dear elderly our culture has so ashamedly pushed to the curb craves the same thing. For starters, I cannot imagine what it must be like seeing yourself change, age and become... well... different than you ever imagined yourself to be. The most difficult part of it is knowing that this we cannot change. All we can do is love them and offer them the respect and honor they are due.

Just as babies, my grandparents crave attention and love; they MUST know that they will be cared for till the day they pass. Babies need that love and affection. They rely on their mother to feed them and would not survive if adults chose to ignore their cries. Like with babies, the same is with the elderly; again those caring for them need to understand that their lives are not their own. I often think of my parents and all they have offered and sacrificed to give so much love to us, so much TIME to us, the two greatest gifts. My parents life is like a cycle; they have birthed my brother and I, raised us, saw us through the awkward years and
let us cry on them in the heartache years. They taught us to seek the Lord in all our endeavors and to walk with confidence and live with a side of adventure. They saw us off to college and lost us for four years as we immersed ourselves in studies and building life long relationships with friends and significant others. They've seen us walk across the graduation stage with misty eyes and a heart pounding in their chests with pride. And just when they thought it was over... their very own parents, the ones who have done the same for them as they have done to us, begin to pull a Benjamin Button.

Children need their parents and in turn parents will need their children.

Let us not be fools; let us give up what we have to find our lives in Christ, knowing that this is how life is. I promise it will not be empty, I promise there will be difficulties, but I promise that it will not be in vein... It will all be for the glory of our God, in whom our hope lies.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Bringing home the Benjamin (yes... singular)

TGIF... and Today is p-p-p-payday!!!

Ok, so maybe I'm not brining home the big bucks, but having a $100 dollar bill in my hand always makes me feel a tiny bit wealthy for a moment. For that moment, $100 is change in my pocket, soon after, it becomes just a foundation for my bank account which will diminish quickly for gas, loans and food. Money goes quick, but there are always ways to have fun without spending tons of money.

For those frugalistas out there, try these things this year to save a penny and share the love:
  • Musical houses: Instead of eating at restaurants share the cooking rights with friends; Get a group of friends that like to cook and love to eat and rotate the cooking responsibilities each month. Maybe you can find 5 friends, and every weekend eat one meal at their house. You'll be able to spend time together, laugh and pray, and try new foods.
  • Take a hike! There is nothing quite better than enjoying nature (at least in my book). Who needs a gym membership during the warmer months when you have the great outdoors to explore. Choose a new trail each week to explore with friends or someone special, or to escape and find time alone.
  • Movie Time: Rent a movie and make it a big deal at your house. Have snacks and drinks that play off the movie's theme and dress up to match the era of the movie.
  • Campfires and S'Mores: What ever happened to just doing nothing? Take a time-out once in a while, invite friends and have a campfire. You can do the trad s'more or roast a hotdog. Take it one step further and pitch a tent for the night; check out the stars and listen to the silence. It clears the mind and you'll feel like you've just had a mini vacation.
So give it a try this year. Riches are not always tangible, and true riches never fade away.

Monday, March 1, 2010

The Name Change

Well, as you can see I've changed the name of my blog. I Love it. The first name I had wasn't really what I LOVED, but now I do really love this name. This past extended weekend my parents and I were visiting my brother Derek at Palm Beach Atlantic University, in West Palm Beach, FL, and I was just inspired by the forget-me-not waters that reflected the sky and the freely swaying palms in the soft breezes. That trip was just what the doctor ordered. The ocean winds were so gentle on my skin and recharged me for the remainder of this winter.

I love this new name and new picture for my blog, which I did take btw. Looking at this picture makes me think of how big this world is, what is out there and the possibilities. Though you or I will never be able to take part in all that we dream of, we can still dream. This little bird just looks like he's dreaming of all that flying space out above the ocean, and all the places he can go, and I too sometimes do the same thing; looking out my window, flipping through a travelers magazine, seeing beautiful gardens, clothing, art, people and thinking how though I'd love to, I will never be able to do all that I'd dream.

But may I leave you with this. Be inspired. There is so much beauty out there in so many forms:
. Photography . Painting . Music . Walking . Loving . Surfing . Gardening . Life .

This Spring I urge you to try something new. It doesn't have to be huge, but maybe you want to venture into cooking, building a shed, take more walks. Whatever it is, be yourself and be unashamed knowing God made you with the desires you have that are good to bring honor to Him. This Spring I'm picking up gardening. We'll see what I can grow and how it turns out. I think I waste more time than use it properly to be able to enjoy things as God intended for me, and the same to you. God has given me an ocean to fly above and sometimes all I do is sit on that twig wishing I was out there. GO!

That's all for now. Balmorhea has soothed me to sleep.