Category Archives: Me

A Time Away

Beach Trip

As I sit to type out this post, this is my view. I set my alarm (I know who does that on vacation?!?!) but I wanted to see if I could catch the sunrise. We have a beautiful view of the ocean, but the actual sunset was just a bit behind the building…still it was amazing and if I had to live here and enjoy this every day…I think I might!! 😉

This is the first time I have ever planned a true “girls weekend away” like this. I used to go see Karlena in Denver when she was alive and I did get that surprise trip to Houston for my birthday…but this was something we planned about 6 months ago and finally the weekend had come.

It is always hard to leave my family. I honestly struggle with guilt at being away, spending money and time just on me, but can I just say that my soul needed this so much! I haven’t written more than a few times this month and last…I write when the words are there and for the most part they haven’t been there.

But as I boarded the plane in Minneapolis, the words started to come. It was as though my spirit knew I could relax and I worked furiously during that 2 hr flight. I participated in the 31 Day challenge in October last year to write every day in that month. Last year I used the Five Minute Friday word prompts, but never wrote but a day in advance.

This year, because of this trip, I have written almost ALL of the 31 posts, less the ones we won’t know the prompts for until Thursday night! I couldn’t believe it…there is something to be said about a writer getting away for some inspiration!

But it wasn’t all about writing either!

On Saturday Gindi and I went down to the beach in the morning. (We are staying in Fort Walton Beach, FL) It was overcast but warm. We sat by the waters edge and marveled at the waves crashing and the few dolphin sightings that we had, but had trouble capturing on our phones!

Beach Trip

It was so wonderful to just to have our toes in the soft, white sand, see the birds that came to dive bomb us on our porch and enjoy the constant sound of the waves.

We decided to drive down to Sandestin and do a little sightseeing. There was this adorable little beach community with food trucks and shopping and gelato!! We walked around and took pictures, fell in love with over priced jewelry and laughed.

Oh this trip was so needed if just for the laughter! Sometimes I get so stressed and overwhelmed that I forget how soul-filling laughter can be!

Beach Trip Collage 2

Then we decided to head back to Destin where we had seen a large outlet mall to do a little shopping! On the way we passed the Snappy Turtle, just the name alone warranted a stop and a cheesy photo op. Inside they had all the cheap, beach souvenirs and while I didn’t buy them, I found these jars with shells that had both Dominic and my name on them! I NEVER have seen anything with either of our names on them! It was so exciting we had to take a picture! 🙂

Beach Trip

We found a nice restaurant where we could have a dinner to celebrate Gindi’s birthday a few days late. I was too scared to try a sushi roll, but did order local grouper instead of the chicken I thought that I might have. I have eaten fish twice here and tried fried green tomatoes (which I LOVED) and crab (which I haven’t had since I was 10 and hated it!) Oh it has all been so so good!

We caught the tail end of the sunset before we set on back to our condo. I could watch a sunset like that every night. If someone forced me I wouldn’t complain at all! 😉

Beach Trip

Sunday we decided to enjoy the bountiful sunshine that the day promised and spent some more time on the beach. We walked in the water, collected small shells to take back to our kids, saw what I was certain was baby sharks…it was so peaceful and fun!

Beach Trip

Then it was back to Destin for a glass bottom boat dolphin ride. It was $29 for a 2 hour tour! It was a wonderful experience to actually be out on the water and they did a great job bringing us to where the dolphins were. It was so amazing to see them in the wild, so close!

Beach Trip

Unfortunately the trip can’t last forever…although I miss my family like crazy! This was a life breathing vacation and I hope I can convince Dominic to do something like this some day with me!! 😉

Where is your favorite place to get away and refresh? I’d love to hear because I am always thinking about where we might go next!!

Mom Confessions and Updates

Mom Confessions

I haven’t blogged any real life confessions in a few weeks! I have had things to share, but we went on a vacation 2 weeks ago and had no wifi! So even though I had things I would have shared, I couldn’t…and can I confess that having a few weeks off felt good.

I love blogging, I love sharing my heart here and working out the nitty gritty of my faith, but when I start to feel the pressure to write, to have a certain number of posts in a week…it starts to lose its appeal.

Taking a break was good for me, necessary really and while I will continue to write, I am trying to lower the expectations I have for myself here.

Things have been a blur since coming back to the “real world.” We were scheduled to be greeters at church the Sunday morning after our return. Note to self, if you are randomly scheduled to greet the day after a vacation…switch with someone.

We were up until almost 1am unpacking and when the alarm went off I groaned…and I am a morning person! Karlena was the worst…crying that she was just SOOO tired! I felt her pain. But we were there, not with bells on…but we were there. The sermon was on baptism and so good..so there was a good reason we needed to be there besides greeting! 🙂

Last week flew by. I really don’t know what we did even. Why is it that you need a vacation from life after a vacation? We had a busy work week scheduled and I think we all struggled to maintain at full speed right out of the gate! Who does our scheduling anyways? A crazy person?!

Oh wait, that is me. :/

This week is VBS week.

VBS

I LOVE LOVE VBS week. Really it is a blast. I am helping lead the singing/dancing again this year and it is the highlight of my summer! It is the one time that I can laugh and dance and be goofy and I don’t feel people are judging me. And if they are I don’t even care because VBS just rocks so much!

I just unpacked my suitcase yesterday. I am honestly surprised that I did it this soon. But it was time, and I couldn’t find a second pair of clean socks to wear to VBS so it was necessary that I search for them in my bag. Isn’t unpacking after vacation the worst?

The Fruit Truck came to town last Friday and we purchased 40lbs of bing cherries. Yes we are nuts but oh were they delicious!! We also bought this cherry pitter.

Cherry Pitter

It was $22 and a splurge but oh how worth it! We set up an assembly line and had 20lbs pitted and frozen in no time!

This weekend the kids asked if they could do an experiment. Karlena grabbed a container and just wanted to add food coloring to water. Then Elijah joined in and wanted to make “goo”…he thought the ingredients were water, Elmer’s glue and “white powder”…I could have searched for a recipe but I was too tired…so we just let them dump and pour.

The result was not what they were hoping for and it made a mess everywhere.

Experiments

Karlena dripped green slops all over the floor. I have yet to mop it. I am secretly hoping the dog does the job for me. I know, I know.

I have fed the kids fried eggs for dinner 3 nights in a row. It is late when we get home from VBS and the kids are usually starving and since it seems we NEVER have anything to eat…eggs are the easiest answer. Thank goodness they love eggs.

We spent the afternoon on Sunday with friends and came home with 2 packs of farm-fresh eggs. Karlena calls them “chicken eggs”…I am not sure what animal’s eggs she thinks we eat normally, but apparently farm-fresh = chicken eggs.

There may be more I could share, but I am tired…and out of words. 🙂 I hope you all have a wonderful rest of the week and hopefully I will be back sometime soon!

“I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and doggone it, people like me”

Swan

Stewart Smalley and SNL left us with that beautiful little nugget…“I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and doggone it, people like me.”

While this phrase became one of those funny things that we would say to each other as teenagers I wonder how often any of us believed it?

In fact for the majority of my life I believed the opposite. I would never be good enough, I am not smart enough….and people won’t ever like me.

Why is it that it can be so easy to see our weaknesses and so hard to discover and name our strengths? (< ==== Click to Tweet)

When you look in the mirror what reflection do you see? Do you see the “ugly duckling” or the “beautiful swan”?

Do your eyes focus on all of the things you don’t like about yourself? Or are you able to see all of the good?

I want my reflection to be one of God’s grace, His light.

Sometimes getting to that place can seem selfish….especially if we aren’t used to putting the focus on ourselves and naming the positive things about us….

But in Holley’s Devotional “Opening the Door to Your God Sized Dream” she writes this: “But actually choosing to understand and embrace who you are is one of the most unselfish things you can do because it maximizes your ability to serve others and bring glory to God.”

If I want to bring glory to God I have to understand and develop those very things that He made strong in me! (< ==== Click to Tweet)

I spent some time listening to a couple of the speakers from this weekend’s IF Gathering. What I heard was amazing, I am probably going to have to buy the DVD if they make one available!  But Rebekah Lyons said this and it really hit home for me. “Finding our calling is being in the place where our talents and our burdens collide.”

So I ask myself, and you….what stirs your heart? And how has God already equipped you to be a part of whatever picture that is?

It can be a bit of an overwhelming thought…but I think we just need to take it one step at a time….

So I start with my strengths and one of mine is my heart for missions….for helping others and giving back what God has so freely given us.

I can take those things that God built into the person that I am and find ways to use them for His glory. How cool is that?!

It doesn’t become something selfish or pretentious when we list our strengths when we are seeking to follow our God-given dreams!

Is it hard for you to name your strengths? I’d love to hear what one of your strengths is so that I can encourage you in your journey!!

I am joining my God-sized Dream sisters today and linking up at the God-sized Dreams Website….want to join the fun?? Click here to read more!

GSD Link Up Picture

Photo Credit: rkramer62

Getting Ready for Allume – Things My Roomies Need to Know!

Allume

In just 10 short weeks I will be stepping out of my comfort zone and flying (all by myself) to Greenville, SC to attend a blogging conference called Allume. So what the heck is this all about anyways right?? Well in their words “Our goal at Allume is to minister to the woman, the blogger, the story teller. We want to love well, encourage, and spur women on to shine the Light that lives within them. We want to serve you in ways that cultivate the Light of Christ in you, help you expand your influence, use your influence well (in your home, your community, or around the world) and encourage you with stories of those who are living out that Light.”

So I am excitedly anticipating this trip and meeting some wonderful friends IRL for the first time and learning how to be a more effective light for Christ in this space here.

One of the women attending Laura, created a fun link up for us to share some things that our roommates should know about us before we go.  Since many of us are sharing rooms with people we haven’t ever met in real life before – I thought this would be fun…so here we go!

1) I am totally a morning person. Like up with my first alarm ready for the day, kind of girl. But will be very quiet for those of you who aren’t!

2) I have longer, curly and often times (in my opinion) unmanageable hair…so I like to shower early so I have enough time to let it dry etc.

3) I am NOT a coffee drinker. But I will drink hot chocolate and just hang with you as you drink yours! 🙂

4) I am already nervous about what I need to pack. Afraid to pack the wrong thing, or too little or too much. I worry about silly things and this is one of them.

5) I don’t have a “smart” phone. I may be the last blogger on the planet NOT to have one. I may have to change that before October! 😉

6) I get nervous speaking in front of people and making small talk. Once a conversation is started I can join in…but I always feel awkward starting a conversation.

7)  I am worried that I won’t remember people’s names, faces etc. I am considering printing pics off of FB for those of you I really want to connect with…but if I don’t recognize you please don’t take it personally…I am just bad at that kind of stuff!

8) This is the first time I have ever done something like this so I am intimated by just about everything. I am an introvert by nature and shy – but once I get to know you I will come out of my shell!

9) I decided to come an evening early so will be there on Wednesday and helping with “dressing” the rooms and decorating etc. I am super excited about this part!!

10) I really just want to be filled this weekend. I pray that I learn a lot, but also see a better direction that God has for me and this space and of course my hope is to develop the friendships that have started with so many of you! I anticipate that there will be little sleep, lots of laughs and maybe even some tears but I know it is going to be worth it!!

Are you coming to Allume? What is your biggest fear about the weekend?!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...