"Life isn't about waiting for the storms to pass... It's about learning to dance in the rain."
~Unknown

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Christmas Performance

The Cousins (aka Twang and the Gang)  performed this for our family on Christmas ;)  Ignore the awkward laugh in the beginning...I have no idea what my dad was laughing about.

video








Thursday, December 26, 2013

The Cousins

So now that Christmas is over, I can post these pictures.  My cousins and I did a photo shoot for my grandparents for Christmas, and I absolutely love the pictures!
Merry Christmas Everyone!








Sunday, December 22, 2013

The REAL 12 Days Of Christmas

I don't know about you all, but I always found the 12 days of Christmas song rather annoying and odd...until I listened to Reliant K's version of it.  Now I absolutely love it!  And I'm going to answer the question that the chorus of this song asks:
"What's a partridge, what's a pear tree?  I don't know so please don't ask me.  But I can bet those are terrible gifts to get!"



Now, for the real meaning of the song.  I am getting this info from a book called The Story Behind the Real twelve Days of Christmas. 

In the sixteenth century, England proclaimed and official state church, and any other religious teaching was forbidden.  Parents had to come up with creative ways to teach their children christman truths, so they often put the truths into lyrics and songs.  This song could be freely sung, because it never mentions God, only "my true love' which refers to God.

THE FIRST DAY
"On the first day of christmas my true love gave to me a partridge in a pear tree..."

A partridge is a small bird similar to a quail or grouse.  the partridge was known as a valiant bird, willing to fight to the death for its young.  the bird's readiness to die for its own made it an ancient symbol of Christ.  The Pear tree represents the cross.


THE SECOND DAY
"On the second day of christmas my true love gave to me two turtledoves..."

For hundreds of years, Jewish families used two turtledoves as offerings to God.  This gift reminds us of the sacfifice offered for Jesus by Mary and Joseph.  A sacrifice of two turtledoves was required by the law.


THE THIRD DAY
"On the third day of christmas my true love gave to me three French hens..."
French hens were valuable poultry during the sixteenth century- only the rich could afford them.  these birds remind us of the three valuable gifts given to Jesus by the wise men...gold, frankincense, and myrrh.


THE FOURTH DAY
"On the fourth day of christmas my true love gave to me four calling birds..."
The calling birds are reminders of the four Gospel writers: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.  Like birds, these four writers called out and proclaimed Christ with loud and distinctive voices.


THE FIFTH DAY
"On the fifth day of christmas my true love gave to me five golden rings..."
The five gold rings represent the first five books of the Old testament: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.  These books, known to the Jews as the Torah, were treated with great reverence and considered to be woth more than gold.


THE SIXTH DAY
"On the sixth day of christmas my true love gave to me six geese a-laying..."
In many cultures, eggs represent new life.  Six geese a-laying remind us of the first six days of Creation when God, by His word, brought forth life on the earth.


THE SEVENTH DAY
"On the seventh day of christmas my true love gave to me seven swans a-swimming..."
The seven swans symbolize the seven gifts of the Spirit: prophesying, serving, teaching, encouraging, contributing to the needs of others, leadership, and showing mercy.


THE EIGHTH DAY
"On the eighth day of christmas my true love gave to me eight maids a-milking..."
The eight maids remind us of the eight unique teachings of Jesus, known as the Beatitudes.  These teachings nurture and strengthen us much like the way milk nourishes a child.


THE NINTH DAY
"On the ninth day of christmas my true love gave to me nine ladies dancing..."
The nine ladies symbolize the nine different fruits that the Holy Spirit produces in the lives of God's children.  Just as these ladies dance joyfully, so can every christian rejoice over the life-giving fruits of the Holy Spirit.

THE TENTH DAY
"On the tenth day of christmas my true love gave to me ten lords a-leaping..."
Lords were men with authority to command people's obedience.  Ten lords symbolize God's ten basic laws, otherwise known as the Ten Commandments.

THE ELEVENTH DAY
"On the eleventh day of christmas my true love gave to me eleven pipers piping..."
These represent the eleven apostles who were chosen by Christ and remained faithful to him.  Like children joyfully following a piper, these disciples joyfully followed Jesus.


THE TWELFTH DAY
"On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love gave to me twelve drummers drumming..."
Just as drummers beat out a loud, steady rhythm for marchers to follow, so the Apostles Creed sets forth the beliefs of those who call themselves Christians.  The twelve drummers represent the twelve vital Christian beliefs as stated in the Apostle's Creed. 


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Christmas Cookies 101

So this past Monday the girls in my family got together with the girls in my cousin's family and with my Mammaw to make and decorate Christmas cookies.  We all had a blast, expecially with the decorated cookies.  As I foretold, the first two or so dozen cookies looked great, but after that, a lot of them ended up looking more like a patchwork quilt than a cookie ;)  Perhaps this was because we were running out of icing...and ideas...but mostly because we had been sitting at the table decorating for hours.  So despite our lack of enthusiasm by the end (and the fact that i ate too much icing), we did have a great time, and I wouldn't mind if this became a Christmastime tradition (yes, this was our first year).

 Cutting out and baking the cookies. Don't mind my tongue, I simply wan't ready for the picture and was licking off some tasty crumbs ;)
 Mammaw and Aunt Candy rolling Snickerdoodles.  Mmmm! Is your mouth watering yet, cause mine is ;p
 The official decorators...


 We all had a favorite cookie that we absolutely adored, and this sweet little Teddy was my cousin's ;)

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!!!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Awesome Day!

I don't know how many of you have ever had an awesome day, but today I had an absolutely awesome day!  It was one of those days that you wake up and feel blah like the day is gonna be so boring, but it turns out awesome.
So I was supposed to have a christmas party today with some out of state family, but because of the snow it was cancelled.  Bummer...
Anyway, so I called some friends to come sled this afternoon.  Frankly, we had a blast!  I am completely covered in bruises from the many faceplants and pile-ups we had, but it was a ton of fun!  Actualy, to be honest, I feel like an old woman.  I have a crick in my back and an ache in my knee and a bruised elbow.   But I'm not complaining!

video
Attempting to snowboard on plastic sleds... as you can see, it didn't work very well ;)







And to top off this incredibly awesome day, my dad got a buck on the last day of hunting!  He hasn't got one in 22 years ;)


Happy Saturday!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Walkin' In A Winter Wonderland

I can't believe its been snowing so much!  I was wishing for snow earlier in the month and now that it came, I found myself complaining at all the things that were cancelled as a result of my much wished for snow.  You know, I often wonder if God doesn't get really frustrated with us...I mean, first I want snow, then I'm complaining to Him because of the snow.  Now I feel guilty...
But anyway, I am enjoying the snow now, and I got some pictures you all might enjoy. I thought I may as well do a post since I couldn't work today (because of the snow!).
 We originally had about 4", but its still snowing and we're expecting 3-5 more inches.  That's a lot of snow ;)  I feel like I'm stuck in a giant snowglobe.  All the better for sledding I guess, which hopefully I'll be doing some of today!







Happy Winter!!!

THANK YOU LORD:

1. for the gorgeous snow
2. for helping me to trust Your perfect plans
3.for time spent with Mamaw and cousins shopping yesterday
4.for all the beauty of christmastime


Saturday, December 7, 2013

A Social Network Christmas

OK, so I know I'm obsessing a bit too much over these little Christmas videos, but they're really good! :)
Here's tow more that I really liked, but as for the rest, you can watch them yourself.  Igniter Media does a great job with these little videos, and I like that they all present the Christmas story...sorta ;D
To see the rest of the videos visit Ignitermedia.com and go to Mini Movies.  Check out Christmas: According to Kids and Jesus and Santa.  In the meantime, enjoy these!

A Social Network Christmas:
I found this interesting mostly because it somehow combined modern day Facebook and a story that's over 2000 years old.



Plastic Christmas:
Guys, this made me really sad, cause its so true for so many people who don't celebrate the true meaning of Christmas... despite what they say.





Thursday, December 5, 2013

Retooning The Nativity

Check out this video!  I though it was a really cute way of telling the Christmas Story ;)


Let me know what you all think!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

My Little Girl

Not literally.  I don't have a little girl.  But this little girl is my adopted little girl.  She loves me and I can't help but returning the feeling.  I spent all day Sunday with her, playing school and watching movies.  She even ate the exact same thing as me for supper, just "cause Brianna was eating it" ;)  She is so cute!
She was trying to teach me how to make a rubber band bracelet using my fingers as the weaving loom (I totally failed btw, so she finished it for me).  Before she left she gave me a big hug, and said, "I love you and I'll miss you!"  I melted....

Now to be more serious, I need to take advantage of this opportunity to mentor her.  She looks up to me and I want to be the best example of Christ as I can be.
For those of you that have little girls like this, take time to mentor them and be an example.  And above all, just love on them.  You don't know how much it means.

And no, those aren't my glasses ;)

Monday, December 2, 2013

When Gratitude Is Gut-wrenching (LYWB)


Happy Thanksgiving!
My greatest wish is that you will spend your day filled up with good food and enjoying strong connections with people who know you well and love you deeply.
But I know it doesn't always work that way.
Our lives rarely look as perfect as we want them to. Sometimes families fight. We hurt each other. Sometimes the people who are supposed to stick by us don't. Sometimes we face disappointment, fear, and heartache. Sometimes our plates are empty and so are our hearts. When life is hard, it feels impossible to look to God and say, "Thank You."
Giving thanks comes easy when everything's coming up roses, but life is bound to serve up some thorns.
Let me suggest something radical . . . the harder life gets, the more we should give thanks. I know, that seems counterintuitive, but the ways God calls us to live rarely jive with what feels most comfortable to us.
Just ask Jonah.
He was in the belly of a fish when He prayed these words:
"But I with the voice of thanksgiving
will sacrifice to you;
what I have vowed I will pay.
Salvation belongs to the LORD!" (Jonah 2:9, emphasis added).
Jonah's circumstances were difficult. God had given him a mission he did not want to accept. When Jonah rebelled, God first sent a nasty storm and then sent a nasty fish to swallow Jonah whole.
If God had called you to something hard, asked you to leave your home and your family, sent you into the eye of a terrifying storm and then into the belly of a whale, would "thank you" be the words that would come out of your mouth? When you prayed, would you do so with a "voice of thanksgiving"?
Yeah, me neither.
But Jonah did. And check out the result...
And the LORD spoke to the fish, and it vomited Jonah out upon the dry land (Jonah 2:10).
Jonah gave thanks. God intervened.
Did Jonah's "voice of thanksgiving" work like some kind of emergency break, forcing God to change His circumstances? Nope. But giving thanks isn't exactly about changing circumstances. It's about changing hearts. Jonah forced himself to focus on what he could thank God for. In doing so, he was likely reminded of some bedrock truths like . . .
  • God is faithful. 
  • God is good. 
  • God is generous. 
  • God has done great things for me. 
  • God has forgiven me. 
  • God is sovereign. 
  • God is in charge. I am not.
Thanking God reminds us of the character of God which only leads to more thanksgiving.
So when life is hard and storms are raging or you find yourself in a pit you don't want to be in . . .
Give thanks.
How ‘bout you start right now?
Be specific. What hardship are you facing in your life right now? What can you be thankful for in the midst of that hardship?

JUst something to think on, even though Thanksgiving is past....

Friday, November 29, 2013

Thanks·giv·ing

thanks·giv·ing


1. an expression of thankfulness, esp to God

Well, Happy Thanksgiving everyone!  I hope you all had as great a day as I did!  I spent thanksgiving with family and a bunch of friends and had a blast!  I ate too much, but its thanksgiving, right?  Thinking about this special holiday inspired me to be more thankful, even for the little things in life.  God has so richly blessed us, and the least we can do is to praise Him with thanksgiving.  I'd encourage you all to start a Thank You God journal.  A dear friend inspired the idea (you can view her blog here.)  Just a list of things you are thankful for, then thank God for them.  It really encouraged me to see her posts on thankfulness, so I hope you all will try this ;)
Anyway, here's some pictures from my Thanksgiving!





 That looks just comfy, doesn't it?
 Playing Jenga, and trying to stay sane.  We were losing it...
 Football...
 A rather violent game of Dutch Blitz.  Michael was one of the few guys who will play this game with us....
 Coffee, even though we were so hot from playing games and getting way too silly ;)
Pictionary! 


"Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name."
~Psalm 100:4


THANK YOU GOD!

1. For family and friends
2. For the crisp autumn weather
3. For an all-night shopping trip with my dad ;)
4. For Your abundant blessings

Monday, November 25, 2013

Sunday Bowling!

Hey everyone!  I'm still alive over here, I've just been really busy with work and everything else.  But I finally made time for a post!  Yay!
So, Sunday my family decided to take the afternoon and go bowling.  I haven't bowled in forever, so it took me the first whole game (which I lost by...a lot) to warm up.  I did better the second game though ;)  Not that it matters.  I really enjoy bowling just for the pure fun of it.  As I was waiting for my turn, I was observing the people on either side of me.  To my right was a mom and her little girl.  They were laughing and having a great time picking on eachother.  But to my left was a guy and his teenage son.  The guy must have been a die hard bowler, cause he even used to dots on the floor.  Did anyone besides me not know what they were there for???  I never really noticed them until he was lining up his feet on them.  Anyway, neither of them really smiled, and whenever something went wrong, the kid looked ashamed.  It kinda made me feel sad, since I so enjoy time spent with family, but they looked like they were having a competition.  Maybe they just had a strange way of having a good time....
Well, here's some pictures!

 The only thing I don't like about bowling is the nasty horrid shoes!
My lucky sister got the tie ones ;) And my mom's black pants help hers to look a bit better ;p

 You can tell which one of us really knows how to bowl...:)  My dad has his own shoes and ball and he's really good...hehe!


"Oh what fun it is to go bowling on Sunday!"
(To the tune of "Jingle Bells")

Monday, November 18, 2013

Inspiring Quotes....

Okay, so I LOVE quotes for those of you that didn't know ;)  Here are a few that I really liked:







Our moms know this too well ;)

Friday, November 15, 2013

PFR: FOREVER

This is probably my favorite song from one of my favorite Christian bands, PFR.  I was introduced to this band by a friend and I've completely fallen in love!  the lyrics in this song are so amazing!

Enjoy!!!!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

New Quote

"Shoot for the moon, cause even if you miss, you'll land among the stars."

Monday, November 11, 2013

Goal Achieved!!!

So this morning I woke up at 5:30am (ugh) to go to the doctor to get a yearly physical.  A waste of time in my opinion, but....
anyway, I checked the charts that we got back and I have officially reached 5'2"!!!!!!   Woooohoooo!!!!!!  Finally!  I know I'm destined to be a smaller than average person, but reaching 5'2" made my day.  Goal acheived!!!!!

Happy Monday!!!

Friday, November 8, 2013

About Me

Just a general announcement for those that didn't notice, I've made an about me page if anyone is interested ;)  Comment and let me know what you think ;)

Thursday, November 7, 2013

God's Handiwork Revealed!

I have seen many beautiful things in my life, but what I saw this morning totally dimmed all the rest.  I was heading out to the barn to feed the chickens when I beheld an absolutely gorgeous double rainbow.  I don't think I've ever seen anything so brilliant and amazing!  I just stood there in awe, then ran like a maniac for my camera and yelling for my mom.  So, this morning my mom, sister, and I spend 15min gazing into the sky until it began to rain harder and the rainbow disappeared.  What a way to highlight my morning!  I am constantly being reminded of God's promises, and this morning certainly was no exception!

Between last night's pink clouds at sunset, then the moon peeking out later, to the rainbow this morning, I am being totally blown away by our Creator's handiwork!

Naturally, i took about 50 billion (exaggerated a bit) pictures, but here are some of the better ones:




 You can really see the double bow in this picture ;)
I absolutely love this last picture with the gorgeous tree and the rainbow...ah! love it!