Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Lessons From Preschool

Since Adam and I have to be away from each other for the holidays this year, I'm trying to do things that will make it easier on the both of us, especially since it's the first time for us to be apart from each other. For his Thanksgiving package I wanted to truly remind the both of us the reason behind Thanksgiving is truly to reflect back on all that you have to be thankful for. With that being said, I sent him a rather interesting assortment of items in his Thanksgiving care package. When I was volunteering for Dabury Elementary School in the preschool class, one of the crafts I helped the kids make was a Turkey. You're thinking, "Duh. Of Course!" But it wasn't only a Turkey, it was a Thankful Turkey, where the each wing represents something you are thankful for in your life. My main job in helping the kids with this craft was to help them come up with things in their life they are thankful for. Let me tell you, that was a tough job! A lot of the kids didn't understand the concept of being thankful. Let's just say that their thankfulness was very simpel and vague, which is definitely ok, since they were just preschoolers. However, it reminded me that we need to learn this concept of thankfulness when we're young. It's a concept that can't be learned early enough.

So, taking this craft and lesson I learned through helping the preschoolers, I thought I would go back to basic "old school" crafts 101, to remind Adam of everything that we have in our lives to be thankful for, despite our circumstances.


*I took the layout of this Turkey*


*And used the idea of Thankful wings from this Turkey*

I forgot to take a picture of my finished Turkey, darn it, but it came out cute I promise!

In the same package, I also sent him an idea that I had gotten from my mother in law, who had gotten it from FB. I had sent Adam Brownies in a jar, but I never thought of sending him cake in a jar, that you actually make in the jar and put right in the oven! GENIOUS!! So I tried it out for this package. It came out amazing and was SO easy! Once Adam received the package, he actually said the cake was still moist, and it had been 3 weeks!! (Although it would have been better if I had sent a small tube of icing. Wasn't thinking right). Of course I sent it to him with a Thanksgiving napkin!


*My results*

The rest of his care package consisted of other "favorite items" of his, like Propel Packets, Mike & Ikes, and of course pictures.

I also wanted to do something special for a Sailor who hadn't gotten much mail. So I asked Adam for a list of names, and chose one on the list at random, and gave the others to my mom and grandma who had items donated to them from church, work, and my mom's class. We were surprised at how much was donated! It was so nice to see people care for our military! I asked Adam for some ideas, but then came up with most of this on my own. I also made it complete with an encouraging note and a bible verse. I did a very simple one, since I didn't want to spend too much money. I was very surprised to hear from Adam that the guy had received my package 2 weeks ago and LOVED it. He needed some of the personal items I sent, and also loved the encouraging note I sent. He said that other guys asked why I hadn't sent them something. That delighted me, but maybe another time!


*A Sailor's package*

All of these kind gestures and reflecting back on things in our lives that we can be Thankful for, can all be learned way back in Preschool. Imagine that! :D

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A Refreshing Visit

Sorry I've been a little scarce with my blog posts lately, but as I said in this post, my family has been with me here in WA for the past week and a half, and I was soaking up every opportunity to spend time with them. It was their first visit to our home in WA. So I'm back because they have left me early, early, early this morning. Here is an over-view of our time together.

The first place I took my family was to Poulsbo, the little Norweigian town that I've already blogged about before. It's a small town, but the best part about it is one of their bakery's, Sluy's.




IT IS SO GOOD!!! This was their favorite part of the whole trip! :D

The next day, we went to Snoqualmie Falls. It was a short trip, but they absolutely loved the beauty of it.




*Love Nature!*




*Baxter got to go with us!*




*Poor Bax was shivering it was so cold!*

Next we traveled on the lovely ferry to Seattle, IN THE POURING RAIN! Gotta love WA! we all felt like a good and hearty bowl of Clam Chowder, and ate at Ivars.




*It was scrumpcious!*




*Then we headed on over to Pike's Place*

The next day was a casual day, since we were tired from the previous days. Adam needed a few things, so I prepared a Christmas package and sent it to him the following day. Before I sent it out, however, I thought that it would be nice for everyone to write a card or a thoughtful note to him.




*Adam's Christmas Cards*

The next day was Thanksgiving, so of course the lady's cooked a traditional Thanksgiving meal.



*The Table*




*Traditional Cooney Thanksgiving meal: Turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, green bean casserole, and stuffing. It was good and gave me lots of leftovers for the winter!*

We heard on the news that Friday would be the best weather of the week, so we planned a roadtrip around the Western Pennisula (around Olympic National Park), which is something that my brother wanted to do, and me as well. It was all of our first time in this part of Washington, except for my dad. Let me tell you, it was a L.O.N.G. day being in the car, but the sites we stopped at were well worth the drive! I have lots of pictures that I will post in another blog, but here are a few.




*Our first view of Olympic National Park. LOVELY!!*




*Lake Crescent*




*We also saw a Bald Eagle on this pit stop!!*




*1st Beach in La Push. Yes, Baxter came with us this day, too!*




*Yes, I made my family stop at Forks. I couldn't pass up this opportunity!*




*Ruby Beach*

We also drove through the Hoh Rainforest, which was beautiful, but pictures really didn't capture it's beauty. It was very beautiful, and very green!

The day after that long, long day, we had another very casual day. We didn't do much, but we went to one of the many Naval musuems in town, which Adam had told me had a lot of stuff from the Stennis there. So there we went on Saturday. To our surprise, almost the whole 2nd floor of the musuem had stuff from the Stennis. There was a really cool interactive touch screen T.V. which displayed the whole ship. You could touch any section of the ship and it would show/explain that department. It was very interesting! It had anchors, knots, gear, and even a display of the bunks that you could crawl into-which isn't easy by the way!




*Where my other half is*




*A display of the flight deck*




*Me in a berthing rack*

Sunday was my brother's last day with us, because he had to get back home on Monday for a Grad-School interview, so before we took him to the airport, we went one last time to Seattle. This time we just went down to the Space Needle and walked around over there. It was a very short trip, but we still had fun.




*Space Needle*

On Monday we stayed at my house and put up Christmas decorations, de-boned the Turkey (which I learned is no fun), and watched the Season Finale of The Sing Off- YEAH FOR PENTATONIX, again!! :D

Overall, it was a good trip. We all had fun together. It was fun to be a host to my family. I loved cooking meals for them (which will be a whole separate blog for all the yummy meals I prepared) and showering them with love in our home. It was a little sad to wake up to an empty house, but I'll be back in Cali very soon!

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Sing Off

One of my guilty pleasures of this Fall season has been the show The Sing Off, which is a competition reality acapala singing show. This season has been phenomenal! Probably the best season yet. My favorite group that I have liked since the beginning has been a group called Pentatonix. They have rocked every performance each show with their creative, original, upbeat acapala style. Check them out on youtube, you won't be let down; you will be blown away!! This was a great performance, so was this, and this, and my second top favorite, and my favorite (You can tell I love them)!!!

Tonight I got to witness them win Season 3 of The Sing Off!!!!!! Congrats Pentatonix!!!!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Faithfulness

As Bax and I go to sleep tonight, with a house full of people, I am continually reminded of God faithfulness to my life. He promises to bring me through the hard times, and rejoice with me during the easier days, and that's a promise He vows to always keep, as long as I am doing my share of the bargain. How awesome is that?!? as I am reminded of my Faithfulness, it reminds me of the old hymn, How Great is Thy Faithfulness.

Great is Thy faithfulness," O God my Father,
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not
As Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.
"Great is Thy faithfulness!" "Great is Thy faithfulness!"
Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided—
"Great is Thy faithfulness," Lord, unto me!
Summer and winter, and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon and stars in their courses above,
Join with all nature in manifold witness
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.
Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
Thy own dear presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow,
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!
*Courtesy of http://www.hymnal.net/hymn.php/h/19*

I absolutely love this song! I hope it reminds you of God's sweet promises to us. They are beautiful! How has God been faithful to you? Have you thought about it recently? He is so good!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

They're Here!!

They're here! They're here! They're here! Did I mention they're here??!!?? Everyone, my family is here!!! :D

I have a lot of reasons to laugh today. Oh and for the next week and a half, too! :D

They're here!!!

Hope you enjoy your weekend, as much as I will be enjoying mine! Me and my crockpot will be super busy/excited that we will get to cook for other people besides me.

They're here!! ♥

Monday, November 14, 2011

Getting By

I've feelin' like this week is gonna be a GRRRREEEEAAAATTT one. Why you ask? Oh, because I've gotten to talk and see my handsome Sailor two, almost three days in a row now, via Skype. I'm a happy girl. So thanks to him, the week started off real well. Later this week my family is comin' to town, so I know the week will end well too! They will be here for a week and a half, so not only will the week be a good one, it will be followed by two AWESOME weeks! I'm one happy girl right now, and it's all due to him. Thanks Adam for always puttin' a smile on my face. I feel rejuvenated every time I am priviledged to talk to him, but this time I feel beyond rejuvenated. I'm feelin' like I can take on the second half of this deployment. Look out deployment, you can't bring me down! I don't have much else to say, but thought I would share with you that I'm a thankful lady and definitely will be receiving much blessings the next couple of weeks.

P.S. I've been mentioning that I have started to listen to Christmas music. Enjoy listening to Faith Hill perform Joy To The World live, here; she sings it beautifully!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Week In Review

I have successfully finished one week of volunteering! It has been an adjustment to deal with a scheduled routine, after not having a schedule, oh, since college! Man, I forgot how hard it is to get up early. I have to get up at 7:20am, to be ready to leave by 8:15, to arrive at the school by 8:30. Although some days I find myself consitently yawning throughout the morning, it's not as bad as I thought. What helps, is that I actually am enjoying it.

This week has also been a funny week with Baxter. He always seems to make me laugh at times when I just want to be mad at him. He does pretty well with only going to the bathroom outside, but some days, man I think he goes inside just to get under my skin. I will literally be walking to the sliding door to let him out, to only find him going to the bathroom in the house at that very moment my hand is on the door. He knows that he is in trouble, because he will run as fast as his legs can get away from me. I'll put him in time out in his kennel for maybe 5-10 minutes, or longer if I just don't want to deal with him, and when he gets out he'll slowly walk out, stretch, and give me the sweetest lick ever. I guess it's his way of letting me know he's sorry.

Or, like twice this week, I think he is playing with a something he's not supposed to, to only find himself, for once, playing with one of his actual toys. What a surprise, right?!? It's also really funny when I'm in the kitchen, not really paying attention, and I look down, and he's sitting right at my feet, looking at me like this

or this

How can you not like this face? If all you ever saw was this face, you would think that Bax was an angel all of the time. Oh lucky you!

Looking back on this week, it wasn't too bad. A lot of my funny memories come from spending time with Baxter. But what can I say, he's the one I spend most of my days with. Although I do find him irritating at times, he is the sweetest pup ever, 87% of the time. Come on, you have to admit that he's pretty cute!


*The best snuggler*


*Don't know how he's comfortable in this position, but he sure is cute!*


*Sleeping sound*




Hope your enjoying your weekend!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Worthy Sacrfices

Today I am especially thankful for the service of our fine military men/women, which includes all of those who have served, are currently serving, or who will commit to serve in the future.


Now that I am a military wife, I really see a different side to the military, as I'm experiencing/seeing firsthand what it means for someone to make sacrifices to serve and protect our country, EVERY DAY. Before I was a military wife I 100% admit that I was naive, and therefore took advantage of what it means to serve in the military. I believe that a lot of people fall into this category. Nobody really knows what a military man/woman's service means to our country, until they experience it in their life in some shape or form. I'm saddened by the fact that I used to only remember our military on special days where I received a three day weekend due to either Veteran's day or Memorial Day, and even then I wasn't grateful to the military for having that day off. Now, every day I am thankful for our military, because every moment of every day I experience what it means to have my Sailor protect our country, because it's his job. Never again will I be naive, and I readily make that stand. I am so thankful for all those who serve, but I am also thankful for all the husbands/wives/children who serve behind the scenes, because they too are making sacrfices by supporting their spouse or parent who is working for our military. Too often their sacrfices go unnoticed, but their service is just as appreciated.

I haven't been shy about my feelings lately. Referring to the fact that I feel unispired to do the endless craft and sewing projects on my to-do lists, to scrapbook the milestones in my life that have passed by, or read any of the countless books on my now fall/winter reading list. I've been trying to really soul-search and truly discover some reasons why I feel unispired. It's not that I only feel unispired, it's more like I don't feel like doing anything, period. I am happy that I am pushing myself to volunteer, because it's something that I truly enjoy. People at the school are almost shocked when I tell them the reason why I'm volunteering and it doesn't involve me having children that attend the school. I've gone every day this week that I was scheduled to go, and I've really enjoyed it. I'm glad that I am also pushing myself to go to church events when I really think, would anyone notice if I'm not there? But then I tell myself I would know and I'm not doing this for anyone else, I'm doing this for me. I know I'm not depressed, because it's not this over-whelming gloom that I feel. I know myself and it's not that at all. I feel positive, joyful, and excited and these feelings will last with me throughout my day when I feel them. It's really hard to put words to what exactly I am feeling, but I think I might have a little idea now:

I feel like I don't have a purpose.

Last night at my bible study when I shared my feelings during prayer time, the lady's really put my life into perspective for me, saying that I'm going through this major life transitional phase right now. I got married to Adam, to shortly after becoming a military wife and seeing him leave for the military for a period of time for bootcamp and school (if you put all the time I saw him during the last 9 months, I've only seen himm for an accumulated and not consecutive month), just turn around and have to say so long for an even longer amount of time. On top of that, I'm a post-grad, who moved to a new state with a totally different climate, with no job, all while being away from the life, family, and friends that I'm used to, and it's totally OK to grieve. One even said that I'm probably grieving the life that I had, since I'm transitioning into a new life here.

Adam also put it another way when I expressed what I'm feeling, by telling me that I'm making amazing sacrifices to help our family that we have in each other.

WOW. When I hear it worded one of the ways above and especially now that it's written so I can see it, I have a reason to feel the way I'm feeling, which is a valid reason to grieve.

All of this got me thinking that where we live does not define our purpose in this life. We could live anywhere across the country or even in any other country around the world for that matter; where we live does not affect our purpose, or even define our purpose in life. Our purpose should be and can always be found in God. When we are seeking His will and we are truly focused straight ahead on God, our paths will align and He will lead us to where He wants us.

It also got me thinking, that right now God may be calling me to simply support my husband and encourage him in every way possibe with what he is called to do. This is hard, yet it makes me so happy when I hear of all the wonderful things he is accomplishing and to see him happy about them. I am so proud of him that he is staying positive, going to chapel services, and setting goals for himself while he is gone. He is worth the sacrfice I am making, and each day I have to remind myself of that.




Thank you for your service Adam. I love and appreciate your sacrifice, which I know is incomparable to mine. Today officially marks that we're half way done with this deployment, and I know we can get through the other half! Love you SO much!!!!

Please pray for me that I will continue to seek God and take this time to soley rely on Him and learn to put Him first and in the center of everything that I do. Thanks.

Happy Veterans Day!!!!


Monday, November 7, 2011

My Best Friend

Today was my first day back at volunteering. It was nice to be there because I'm finally feeling better. I have a lot more "getting better" to do, but I at least feel like I'm at a place where I'm finally catching up on my rest. That's still my project this week, but it feels good to be able to be outside of my house without feeling woozie. It felt really good to be there, and I really enjoyed all the kids in all the classrooms I was in. I really like this school. Since it's so close, I've been walking there because it takes me less than 10 minutes to walk there, so why waste gas?

After my last class at 1:30, I was looking through songs on my ipod deciding which two songs to listen to on my way home and decided that it felt like a Queen kind of day, so I chose Bohemian Rhapsody & My Best Friend. Queen is probably my favorite groups of all time. I love them so much. 1) I appreciate their originality. I mean, no one else in their time was like them. They are 100% original. 2) Their sense of uniqueness. It's really hard to copy Queen, because their sound is so original. I mean, hav eyou actually listened to Bohemian Rhapsody. Let me repharse that, who hasn't listened to it! Adam and I both share the same love for Queen. On many of our car rides, we both are singing loudly to Bicycle, Bohemian Rhapsody, and Fat Bottom Girls. I feel sorry for the cars next to us, because we get into it. Adam really wanted to come down the aisle at our wedding to Bicycle, and I told him a gently no.

My Best Friend is probably my favorite song of them. I find that song to be so real and true. Here are the lyrics to the song if you aren't too familiar with it.

Ooh you make me live
Whatever this world can give to me
It's you you're all I see
Ooo you make me live now honey
Ooo you make me live

Ooh you're the best friend that I ever had
I've been with you such a long time
You're my sunshine and I want you to know
That my feelings are true
I really love you
Oh you're my best friend

Ooo you make me live

Ooh I've been wandering round
But I still come back to you
In rain or shine
You've stood by me, girl
I'm happy, happy at home
You're my best friend

Ooo you make me live
Whenever this world is cruel to me
I got you to help me forgive
Ooo you make me live now honey
Ooo you make me live

You're the first one
When things turn out bad
You know I'll never be lonely
You're my only one
And I love the things
I really love the things that you do
You're my best friend

Ooo you make me live

I'm happy at home
You're my best friend
Oh ya
Oh you're my best friend
Ooo you make me live
You you're my best friend.
*Courtesy of www.sing365.com*

Is it just me, or are those genuine lyrics or what?!?

I also like this song for another reason: it was the song I chose to walk down the aisle to at our wedding. I thought, why not walk down the aisle to my favorite group, who also produces my favorite song.

But that's not the only reason.

It's really because Adam is my best friend. There is no one who knows me better. Let me rephrase. There is no one on earth who knows me better, who understands me, can make me laugh, or who appreciates my sometimes quirkiness more than him. He just gets me. That's why I was so emotional on our wedding day walking down the aisle, with him patiently/anxiously/nervously waiting for me at the end of it. The lyrics to the song, the fact that by nights end we would both have vowed to cherrish each other and spend the rest of our lives together, and that we were doing it infront of all the people who mean the most to us, contributed to my emotions. And it hit me. It hit me hard; he's everything that I want in someone, and then a little more.

Before the wedding I was pondering on how I would feel walking down the aisle. Would I be happpy, well of course I'd be happy, but would my emotions show in the world's biggest smile or in happy tears was the real question. I couldn't tell and decided to leave it alone. However, when I stood at the end of the aisle, seeing my best friend waiting for me at the end, my heart became overwhelmed with happiness, as I knew that this was a decision in my life that I was so sure on. I felt as if I loved him so much already, yet knowing that it would grow even more over the course of our life, was such an incredible thought. There is no one besides him who I'd rather share my life and future with more than him. No one.

Adam and I both agree that we grow closer together when we're away from each other, more than when we are together, because we learn to appreciate the qualities in each other that we don't fully understand or can fully appreciate when we're together. It's really a beautiful thing. That's why I know for 100% that when he walks off that ship, I will love him more than I did the day I said "so long," this time in tears of sadness. However, I know I have grown from that day 'til now, because I know that Adam and I are both strong enough to get through this time, because we have each other to come home to. What can be better than that?!?

It was nice to listen to that song today and be reminded of a beautiful day that is held closely to us both; the day that marks forever with each other. I'm glad I get to have little moments like these every now and then. Today was a simple, but good day.

♥ 07.16.2010 ♥


*The walk down the aisle*




*The man I was waiting for*






*The beginning of our ever-after*

Sunday, November 6, 2011

A Psalm A Day

I'm finding, that a Psalm a day keeps the worries away.

This is really true. A lot of Psalms remind you not to worry and encourage you to sing praises to God. I'm also finding that each Psalm can remind us to remember something about God's character. I want to share a few Psalms that I have read this past week with you.

Psalm 22:9-11, "Yet you brought me out of the womb; you made me trust you even at my mother's breast. From birth I was cast upon you; from my mother's womb you have been my God. Do not be far from me, for trouble is near and there is no one to help."

I find these verses in this chapter to be so encouraging to me. Not only is it encouraging, but its a good reminder for us to remember that God has been faithful to us since birth! WOW! That really humbles me on the spot. To know that he has been my God since birth, and has had a plan for my life since the womb, too, that is the most AMAZING reminder ever that God is indeed faithful and will always see us through. If he can do it from the womb, of course He can do it on earth too- here's probably the easier place to do it!

Psalm 23, the whole chapter I would encourage you to read. This is the famous chapter of "The Lord is my shepard..." It reminds me that, not only will God be faithful, but he'll see me through times of despair, struggle, and loneliness. He'll restore my soul, guide me to quiet places, shield me, and provide me comfort through his holy name. It's no wonder that most people can remember this chapter of Psalms through memorization- it's so comforting to know that God is our shepard (guide).

Psalm 25:4-5, "Show me your ways, O Lord, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long." I think that it is important that the author of this Psalm included the ending phrase "all day long." He could of left it out and his point would still have been made. Yet, he chose to include it. I find this phrase to be important, because in the morning we may feel that we are super close to God and feel as if we can do anything that comes our way. Yet in the afternoon, the devil might find us and feed us lies. Just like that, our hope can be gone. It's really important to have trust and strength in God throughout the entirety of our day (s). I am still learning how to do this, because it is hard to do.

Psalm 27:1-6 Read it; it's amazing!!

Psalm 30:4-5, "Sing to the Lord, you saints of his; praise his holy name. For his anger last only a moment, but his favor last a lifetime; weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning." All I can say is thank you to the psalmist who wrote this, and AMEN!!! :D

I hope at least one of these Psalms speaks close to your heart, because I found that all of these spoke to mine. If you are finding yourself in a dark place right now, I would encourage you to read a Psalm a day; I promise you won't regret it! :D

Yeah for a fresh new week!!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Highlights & Low lights

This week has been a week of surprises, blessings, reoccurring sickness, visits from friends (and a cute baby), and rest. I guess I can unravel it a little better for you than this.

I started the week off feeling rejuvenated as I started into a new adventure up here: volunteering. There is a school right down the street from our community, that most of the kids who live here go to, and I thought what better way to get my foot in the door then to volunteer. But to be a little more honest with you, it's better to do something else than watch endless episodes of Friends and My Wife and Kids reruns during the day. I decided on volunteering three times a week right now, since I haven't had any luck finding a job. So Monday morning bright and early I was not in my bed like I would have been, instead, I was up-and-atom before the sun came out (actually, it never came up that day). Surprisingly, I wasn't tired throughout the day like I suspected for waking up that early, and didn't even take a knap! Go me! I can already tell that I am going to enjoy this experience at the school. I am volunteering in the library for an hour, the all-day kindergarten class for an hour, a second grade class for 30 minutes, take an hour break, and then come back and help out in a fourth grade class for an hour. What a diverse schedule, I love it!

However, Monday was my only day volunteering there this week, as I got sick from a kid in the nursery at church on Tuesday and had to call and cancel my two other days for the week, as I didn't want to pass it around AND I didn't have the energy. By Tuesday evening I was full-blown sick, yet again. Don't you love it how the flu catches you when you don't want it to?!? Gotta love that flu-NOT! So instead of spending the rest of the week at the school, I spent it trying to get rest, which is a lot harder than it sounds! So basically all day Wednesday and Thursday I spent in bed, except for going to get medicine at the store and going to my Dr. appointment.

What I'm lovin:

1) A hot cup of tea
2) My NeilMed Sinus Rinse- I have been using this since May and it works WONDERS! I got it from Costco, and it's like a netty pot, but it's a bottle. It's so easy to use and it's affordable. I used to get sinus headaches daily, now it's a rare occurance! You would be surprised at how well it works. (I should be a spokesperson!).
3)Mucinex

Spending those two days, alone, with no human interaction (wait, talking to Baxter doesn't count as a human interaction? Dangit!), I made sure I got enough rest by Thursday night, because I needed to be around some humans. So I made sure I felt well enough to attend my woman's bible study. Sure am glad I went, it was a great chapter we went through, and I got a lot out of it!
Another reason I wanted to make sure I got plenty of rest, was because my good friend Christine came up to WA to visit some family and we had scheduled to see each other over two months ago. I did not want to cancel our visit, I had been looking forward to it for a long time! We had a lovely time talking, taking a walk along the water, and ooing and awwing over her cute baby boy, who is growing up so fast; he's almost four and a half months and is cuter than ever! I tried out a new recipe for us for lunch, crockpot Vegetable Lasagna, and let's just say that it's my new BFF. Not only was it DELICIOUS, but it was so easy, too. I didn't take any pictures, unfortuantely, but that's ok, I have her visit to cherish, as she's our first ever visitor to our new place!

Inbetween getting sick and Christine's visit, I received a card and package from Adam in the mail. It's always nice receiving things from him. It doesn't matter what exactly it may be, anything from him always brightens my day. To describe Adam's package using one word, would be "random."

It contained, another card, a program from the chapel service he attends on the ship, a magnet from Bahrain, coins from Bahrain, a 5th Fleet coin from Bahrain (there's a picture below of the front and back), a pin from a bomb that says "Remove Before Flight," and a 22 minute dvd of him reading the book The Itsy Bitsy Spider, the Mr. Z. way (his dad would be proud) and him talking to me from his heart. The dvd is an item that is so precious to me; I've already watched it four times and will have watched it one more time before tonight is over. Not only did his reading make me laugh hysterically, he definitely knows the way to my heart, as he spoke straight from his for 18 minutes, which if you know Adam, that's hard to do, so I am very honored that he actually took the time and put effort into his thoughts. It was also nice to actually get to see him; let's just say he's lookin' good!!





*All my "random" items*





*The front of the coin*





*The back of the coin*

So I put the items onto their new place on the wall:








And put the cards he sent with all the other cards I have received from friends and family since we've moved here.





(Love this idea I had!)

I hope you had a great week and are taking the right steps to avoiding the nasty flu that is going around.

This week I pulled out Faith Hill's Christmas cd (I love it!!). I know it's not even Thanksgiving, but I had to give in! I love this album of hers! I'm off to go listen. Happy weekend!!


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The Sacred Romance

I finished the book! I finished the book! I feel so accomplished, because these days, following something all the way through, is a big deal (as much as I hate the sound of that). Let me tell you, this book is so encouraging, uplifting, motivational, and inspiring book that I've read in awhile. It really teaches you a lot about God's character, which we so often mis-interpret or don't understand altogether. It really tackles down to the bottom line of it all: we need to be in love with God. I know that sounds weird today in our culture, but it's true. It doesn't mean all lovey-dovey. It means that we need to be passionately devoted to Christ as we are to our husband. God wants us to be passionate about Him. Which means: to serve Him, love Him, make time for Him, worship Him, the whole nine yards. He wants to be a part of our life, but how can He be if we don't feel the same way for Him, as He does for us? This seems so obscure for our culture, but this is what the Christian life should be, and so often isn't. I really want to share some of my favorite quotes/passages from the book, just to give you that little extra ummph to want to read it.

"...if we keep our hearts and minds open as well as our ears, if we listen with patience and hope, if we remember at all eeply and honestly, then I think we come to recognize, beyond all doubt, that, however faintly we may hear him, he is indeed speaking to us, and that, however little we may understand of it, his worrd to each of us is bot recoverable and precios beyond telling." (13)

"There are only two things that pierce the human heart, wrote Simne Weil. One is beauty. The other is affliction. And while we wish there were only beauty in the world, each of us has known enough pain to raise serious doubts about the universe we live in." (23)

All of Chapter 6 is worth quoting. That's my favorite chapter in the whole book. It goes into good detail about how God has been the ageless romancer since the beginning of time. Great stuff!

"Lucy wasn't looking for Narnia when she found it on the other side of the wardrobe; om a way, it found her. Abraham wasn't wandering about looking for the one true God; he showed up with an extraordinary invitation. But having had their encounters, both could have chosen otherwise Lucy could have shut the wardrobe door and never mentioned what had happend there. Abraham could have opted for life in Haran. The choice before us is a choice to enter in" (148-149) ♥

"But there is more. Life on the road takes us into our heart, for only when we are present in the dep sentences can God speak to them. That's why the story is a journey; it has to be lived, it cannot simple be talked about (154).

"If for all practical purposes we believe that this life is our best shot at happiness, if this is as god as it gets, we will live as desperate, demandingm and eventually despairing men and women. We will place on this world a burden it was never intended to ear. We will try to find a way to sneak back into the Garden and when that fails, as it walways does, our heart fails as well. IF truth be told, most of us live as thog this is our only hope, and then we feel guilty for wanting to do exactly what Paul said he would fo it that were true" (179).

"If our pictures of heaven are to move us, they must be moving pictures. So go ahead-dream a litte. Use your imagination. Picture the best possible ending to your story you can. If that isn't heaven, something better is. When Paul says, "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mnd has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him" (1 Cor. 2:9), he simply means we cannot outdream God. What is at the end of our personal journeys? SOmething beyond our wildest imagination. but it we explore the secrets of our heart in the light of the promises of Scripture, we can discover clues" (181).

Great stuff, right!?! I know, I've read it, now you need to, too! :)

So now that I have read one book off my end of Summer/Beginning of Fall reading list, I feel accomplished that I can cross this one off of my list and start on another one. This is what my reading list looks like now, in the order I'll be reading them in:

Fall Reading List:

Forgotten God, Francis Chan
New Moon, Stephanie Meyers
The Wounded Healer, Henri Nouwen
Crazy Love, Francis Chan


Whatcha readin' these days?