Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Getting Over Yourself // She Seeks

I'm over at She Seeks this week with a story that involves belting Adele in the middle of Starbucks. Yup. Hop on over and have a read. (click picture to go to page)

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Big Announcement // Moving to the City of Art & Intellect

We're moving to the city of art and intellect. Oh, and the beach! 
Some of you may remember this post, where I talked about a dream being born in my heart to move to the beautiful city of Santa Monica. That was three months ago. And now we're packing and planning to be moved by the Summer. 

Moving out of my hometown is something I've romanticized about, like a big wild adventure waiting to happen. But never in a million years, did I think I would actually be presented with the opportunity to do so, and more than that, take it!

But it has presented itself and yes, we are taking it. 

Our expectations are low and our needs high, but Ty and I know that this move symbolizes another level of trust for us. Trusting each other and trusting God. We are moving out of our comfort zones into a big vast sea of possibilities; possibilities of failure and success. 

The possibilities of failure keep us timid and questioning; but the possibilities of success compels us to take the jump. 

There is so much more I want to share with you and I will do so every Thursday for the next 6 months (from now until our move and maybe then some). The segment will be titled "Moving Days", documenting our season of packing, letting go, and the tall tales of moving to the big city. 

Above all, please pray. Pray that God would have His way in our lives as He moves us and creates new opportunities for us to meet and minister to people along our journey. 

That's all for now. Happy Sunday!
**Ps, if you're in the LA area of Cali, send me an email and I'd love to connect with you!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Big Announcement Tomorrow

Hint: We're NOT pregnant ;)
Eeeeek! I can't wait to tell you. Most of you might already know. Ok, check back tomorrow! After 1PM. 

Friday, February 24, 2012

Friday Links

Guilty! ^^
Now that we got that out of the way, here's some of my favorite links and readings from this week.

My new absolute favorite Girl Scout Cookie. Kill me now.    (Flickr)

My husband found this site from a tweet. He sent me the link with a note that read, "Babe, I think you're the Achiever and the Confidant. Love you." Thank you?    (Darling Magazine)

I am a super-duper-proud contributor to this beautiful new community of women. We talk about everything faith, family, food and fun! Come on over and take a peek.     (Beautifully Rooted)

I want to take a picture like this. Wedding dress on with casual jacket or sweater.    (Pinterest)

On our way home from our Valentine's Date, Ty and I played "High School Music Flashback." I just made that up right now. We took turns playing songs that we clung to in our high school years. His first choice? Motorcycle Drive By by 3rd Eye Blind.  My first choice? I Do by 98 Degrees. Naturally. 

Cake? In a soup can??   (Pinterest)

11 Ways to Make Your Worship Leading Suck Less. These were both funny and insightful.  (Ragamuffin Soul)

Pinterest is how I get inspired. I mean just look at this, and this, and this and this. Are you on Pinterest

Happy Friday! Any fun weekend plans? 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

24 Before Turning 25

It feels good being 24. So far. I was nervous, thinking that somehow adding one more year meant adding the world. I'm glad God let us age slowly. Just one year at a time, though sometimes it feels like 10. 

A friend of mine told me a story recently about when she turned 24. She said her sisters warned her that her skin would start aging more quickly, so she needed to be religious about washing her face at night and applying sunscreen everyday. She has some of the best skin I've seen! I'm adding that on my list this year, #16. 

Here's to another year of making lists and accomplishing goals! 
1. Go bungee jumping 2. Successfully de-clutter my wardrobe 3. Go to New York or Hawaii 4. Learn a new instrument 5. Establish 3 girls conferences 6. Move 7. Start a new tradition with my family 8. Have a movie marathon 9. Find new sugar-free recipes 10. Keep off wedding weight 11. Watch the sunset & sunrise in home town 12. Drink more green tea 13. Work towards self employment 14. Start a new hobby 15. Memorize Proverbs 31 16. Wash face and sunscreen everyday 17. Write down all our grandparents' love stories 18. Partner further with Love 146 19. Make more music with Ty 20. Try out pink hair! 21. Finish 1 Smashbook/month 22. Meet up with blogger friends 23. Take a hot air balloon ride in home town 24. Know God more

**This post concept is not an original one. It was inspired by A Beautiful Mess

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

My 24th Birthday Present

I Cried in my 24th Birthday

TysonMorlet just danced me into my 24th year of life. And I bawled like a baby on his shoulder. Happy birthday to me! 

Today will be a 3X post day because it's my birthday! 1) This sweet moment between me and him, 2) what to get me for a present and 3) my list of 24 things to do before I turn 25. This is going to be fun. 

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Writing Prompt :: Things We've Learned NOT to Say in Church

Photo Credit

Church is a place where unimaginable healing can take place. The grace and love of God can heal even the deepest of wounds and forgive even the darkest of sins. 
However, because the Church, not yet perfected, is made up of struggling human beings, it can also be a place that wounds and defeats. Un-rightly so, but true nonetheless. 

What are some things you've learned are NOT permissible subjects to talk about in church settings?

What are some struggles you've learned are NOT accepted for confession in the church? 
What are you afraid to tell to the people who are supposed to love you the most? 
What do you wish you could get out in the open but don't for fear of judgement or ridicule? 

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

12 Tools & Rules I Learned in the First Chapters of Writing Down the Bones

T o o l s : 
"This is your equipment, like a hammer and nails to a carpenter, your writing tools are a necessary part of your life." - Natalie Goldberg

1. Get a fast pen.
Our minds process faster than our hands, so eliminate as much lag time as possible by choosing a pen that is both comfortable and speedy. Interesting right? 

2. Notebook choice is important.
When working with a deadline (whether your own or someone else's) opt for a cheap notebook. The more expensive it is, the more compelled you'll be to write something good all the time. Also, try out different types of paper: graphed, lined, blank, colored.

3. Computers are efficient, Handwriting is more connected. 
Depending on the type of writing you are doing, you may choose to go with one or the other. Golderg's observations are, computers allow you to writing faster yet produce black block lettering, thus making it less personal. Handwriting is more connected to the movement of the heart, however it is significantly slower. 

4. Voice record your thoughts. 
Speaking things out in the open can sometimes bring clarity and confidence. 

R u l e s :
“Nobody cares much whether you write or not. You just have to do it.” -Natalie Goldberg

5. Keep your hand moving.
This forces you out of control of your words and sentence structure. It lets you "get it out" before over analyzing.

6. Don't cross out anything.
Editing comes after spewing, as clean up comes after spilling. 

7. Lose control of your standards and ethics. 
Just write. When it's only you reading the rough draft of brainstorming and writing, don't fight the politics of society, grammar, and proper standards. Let it out and sensor later.

8. Don't think and don't get logical.
Again, it's forcing yourself to write outside the box of propriety. 

9. Go for the jugular. 
If something comes up in your writing that is scary, keep going. Beauty comes from the most vulnerable and undiscovered parts of us. 

E x t r a  T h o u g h t s :
10. "First thoughts have energy and are un-encumbered by ego..."
11. "No matter what you feel, write a little more."
12. "The definition of inspiration is 'breathing in.'"  

Friday, February 10, 2012

Friday Links

Photo Credit

It's pretty girly over here today folks. Not gonna lie.

I stumbled upon this love story project from a fellow blogger and thought it was both genius and heart melting. Since one of my New Year's Resolution is to document my grandparent's love stories, I will definitely be in support of this chica's endeavors. 

I'm infatuated with Lulu Lemon. I have their pants but now I'm craving this hoodie & this hoodie. Now if I could just find $90 in the couch cushions... (Lulu Lemon)

Everyone loves FREE printables! Especially cute ones. (Chickabug)

I thought about writing a post on Tips for Blogging this week, but there are so many other good articles that say everything I would say. Here is one I think reaps the most benefit. (Made By Girl)

For those of you who are freaking out about Picnik closing down, here's the best replacement I've found. You can't make collages though. I LOVED that about P. (iPiccy)

Dear Aquaphor... (Hello Giggles)

After Hollywood Housewife blogged about Blushington (a place where you get made over for $35!!), I'm making an appointment for next week. I can't wait to see what all the fuss is about! 

This post, Remembering, by Mandy Thompson, really shook me this week. Not in a breakdown way, but more of a snappy reminder that writing for any reason, is always a good idea. 

Read anything interesting lately?

Happy Weekend! I'll be MIA til Sunday. Remember, I'm organizing in hyperdrive ;) 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Expectations - Communication = Frustration

Expectations without communication leads to frustration.
I heard this phrase from a woman's event I sang at around Christmas time. When I first heard the line, I thought it was clever. It grabbed my attention and resonated with me. Not that at that moment I was even frustrated, but it seemed like a good nugget for the future. 

Well that little nugget got put to use this week. 

My boss very understandingly gave me two weeks off from work to get my head together after the girl's conference and some personal battles. I was more than looking forward to doing a whole lot of sleeping, planning, regrouping, and cleaning. I wanted time to reset priorities and calendar my life out. 

For some reason, I thought this would help eliminate the guessing game of what each week held. In my mind, I thought it would go a little something like this:

The Frantic Me: When am I going to clean the house? 
The Organized Me: Oh! According to your new system, that happens on Wednesdays! 
The Indecisive Me: Should I read or write tonight? 
The Organized Me: Well my calendar is reminding me I have a deadline for this in two weeks so I should write! 

Good plan right? Yup. Good plan. However, I'm on my last weekend off and the only thing I've accomplished is cleaning the apartment. Not a huge feat. We only have one bedroom :) 

This isn't anyone's fault except mine. I never communicated. 
I thought and strategized everything in my own head and that's as far as it went. My frustrations have died down and that satisfied feeling of "learning" has begun to set it. You know that feeling? Like when you are on the other side of a test and think to yourself, "Man, it feels so good to have known all those answers!" Ok, maybe a stretch but you know what I'm trying to say

I've learned, just a little bit more, how important communication is to human relationships. 

So I'm taking my last four days and setting my two week goals into hyperdrive. And now you all know! ;)

Are you a communicator? Any tips and tricks that keep you on track? 

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

10 Songs I'm Listening To On Repeat

1. Who Are We Fooling | Brooke Fraser & Aqualung (video above*)
2. Someone Like You | Adele
3. Tomorrow | Tyson Morlet
4. Green Eyes | Coldplay
5. Come Thou Fount | Leigh Nash
6. She Belongs to Me | Bob Dylan
7. Set the World on Fire | Britt Nicole
8. I've Got This Friend | Civil Wars
9. Living Proof | Mary J. Blige
10. Desert Song | Hillsong United

What are you listening to?

Monday, February 6, 2012

A Letter to My Sister as She Enters Motherhood

Sweet Sister, we both know Baby E is a miracle. 
I remember the day we both drove home from the doctor's office, crying and holding hands as we called Mom to tell her our diagnosis'. They told us conception wasn't in the cards for us. 

We felt broken and worried, but we'd been raised to know there was a God who cared about our deepest fears. He knew our hearts longed to be mothers and so we walked out of that office in the contrasting state of sadness and confidence. Sadness for the possibility of loss and confidence in who our God was, is and will forever be.

He is good. He is faithful. He is love.
And if there's one thing He is in the reoccurring business of, it's allowing barren women to become mothers. 

You are real live proof. 

This weekend, we celebrated your 8th month of pregnancy with a beautiful shower thrown by family and friends. Baby Ezekiel will be joining us in March and we can't wait to meet him. His life will forever tell the story of the grace and sovereignty of God. He will be loved. 

You and he are real live proof to me. You give me hope when I feel discouraged. You remind me to be brave. I love you so very much and there will never ever be "such devoted sisters" than us. 

Welcome to motherhood my sweet sister. You are going to be amazing. ~


Saturday, February 4, 2012

Writing Prompt // I do/don't believe in prayer because...

Prayer is a universally controversial topic. I think everyone prays, whether you believe in God, a god, or lack there of. But for some, prayer is a necessary way of life. It's how they thrive in this whirlwind called life. It's how they survive the perpetuating disillusionment. It's how they still have joy when the walls have crashed down around them. 

But for others, it's a waste of time, a lifeline they know only bounces around the walls of the room they are in. What do you think?

I do/don't believe in prayer because...

Photo Credit 1 & 2

Friday, February 3, 2012

Friday Links

The photo above is Pink and Red Velvet Hot Chocolate in lieu of Valentines! (A Beautiful Mess)

An amazing chart on relationships. Read it. (Cup of Jo)

Ommwriter: A creative business that inspires, well, creativity. I want to explain it more but it's so different that you won't understand me. If you're a creative, just watch this video. (Ommwriter)

Sunglass fetish anyone? (Who, What, Wear)

I've been cracking down on my saving's plan these days so I downloaded Dave Ramsey's budget pages. (Dave Ramsey)

Online resumes are so diverse and quite frankly, a little tough to dream up. This couple nailed it. Simple & informative. (Vesterfelts)

This week's topic of Ambitious Women as Wives struck a chord with so many women! I knew throwing it out there would either be really good or really bad and turns out, it's really good! If you haven't yet, join the conversation. (Julianna Morlet)

A blogger friend of mine just dyed her hair pink! Like hot pink! Isn't she adorable?? (Hollywood Housewife)

And of course these cute sisters always have something to copy! This week it's Organizing Your Spices with Magnets. (A Beautiful Mess)

Happy Reading! 
Anything interesting you've read this week on the world wide web?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

How a Cup of Coffee Can Show a Girl You Love Her

**This post is part of our 40 Day Birthday Party. Read more here.  Ty and I are asking for your support of this organization for our 40 Day birthday celebration. Instead of us receiving gifts, it is our wish that you donate to the freedom, restoration and love of these girlsDonate here

I told myself I would never do this.
Everyone does it.
I thought it was a shame tactic.
Now I'm doing it. But not as a shame tactic.
I'm doing it because I was sorely convicted. 
I'm doing it because, because I'm guilty.
This is my fetish. This is my obsession.

In November I'm pretty sure I had a Gingerbread latte at least every other day.

**This is not to say that buying coffee is bad. On the contrary, buying coffee is good because it stimulates the economy. Plus, Starbucks is for fair trade coffee. So that's good.**

But I am asking you for just this month, or even this week, or even just today, spare the coffee and give these girls the chance to be free. Show them that love is worth it.

Give them a chance to live free of fear.
Give them a chance to live free of abuse.
Give them a chance to live free of torment.
Give them a chance to live free, full of hope, and new love.

Our Goal is $3000 
We already have $2,056.00 (Thank You!)
Which gives us $944 left!

Give a coffee's worth.

If you'd like to learn more about the issues of sex-trafficking and Love 146's organization before donating, go here. (love146.org)
^^^Opinions, two-cents, questions and ramblings are welcome. And go above. Go ahead. Try it.

Reader Faves.