Camera Dump

I just recently dumped all the pics from my camera onto my computer…finally. I am loving my new camera. Here are a few are from an engagement shoot I got to tag along on…I REALLY love taking other peoples pictures, plus I am wiling to bring along my kitchen cupboard door (see below). If you know of anyone who wants a free photo shoot, im jonsen for some practice!

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Lent

Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
To loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke,
To set the oppressed free and break every yoke?
Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter – 
When you see the naked, to clothe them, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?
Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.
Then you will call and the LORD will answer; you will cry for help, and He will say ‘Here am I.’

If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and the malicious talk,
And if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed,
Then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday.
The LORD will guide you always, 
he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and strengthen your frame.
You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.
Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins and will raise the age-old foundations;
You will be called Repairer of Broken Walls, Restorer of Streets with Dwellings.
[Isaiah 58]

B is for Busy

I’m sitting down in front of my computer right now wanting to capture the moment in words and floundering to even get this first sentence out. There are a million different thoughts pinging through my mind and as I try grab of few of them to get them on paper it seem nearly impossible. I suppose some of my thoughts aren’t ripe enough for picking.

To say that this season of life for Richie and I is a busy one is an understatement. The reality of that was made apparent to us, of all places, across form our tax lady. We handed her our five different W2’s to which she commented…wow…you both work full time. Yup we do. Then she asked if we had any educational write offs, to which we replied…yup, both currently in full time masters programs. Her eyes kind of got bigger…Oh but don’t worry, Richie has a scholarship because oh yeah- he plays baseball and season just started. Our tax lady kind of shook her head and laughed.

This got me thinking. On top of work, school, and baseball….we are also in a life group and a Bible study, I’m doing another all women’s Bible study, plus I am currently mentoring someone. Not to mention friends and family, and the birthdays, holidays, celebrations, and nights out that come along with needing and wanting to spend time with the people we love. We are also just simply trying to navigate what being young and married looks like. Oh yeah, and we are in the midst of planning a trip to Europe this summer, and a trip to Canada, I am planning a missions trip with my job to Mississippi, and Richie is heading to the east cost.

 So then we decided- what the heck- lets buy a house.

 SO in the midst of the crazy….we are also moving.

 And to think, five months ago I was bawling because I was BORED and JOBLESS.

 The Lord continues to humble me with his abundant provisions, and continues to remind that he cares enough lavish his love over me, filling all the nooks and crannies of my life. And to think, most of the time I still focus on the negative- the things I don’t have, the people who refuse to be my friend, and the mistakes I have made. I dwell. I dwell. I dwell. And I let Satan blind me from a Fathers love for his daughter.

So this morning is a morning for pondering the wonder of God and placing myself in a posture of thankfulness. It is a morning for not seeing my life as busy but as rich with meaning and intentionality. 

 

(also- I went to part time in my masters program, dropped a bible study, and made a cup of tea. Self-care people. Self-care.)

super dramatic day

So if you are reading this and you’ve never met me its imperative you know, I am not, generally speaking, a super dramatic person…in fact in general people use words like responsible, even keeled, trustworthy, content, and dare I say peaceful to describe me.

But today I woke up on the dramatic side of the bed. I managed to blow everything up in my mind into something irrational, have significantly unreasonable responses to situations that came up, and I was in general, a drama queen.

Do you ever have days like that? Where you declare words “I have NO friends” at your husband. Days where you are convinced everyone had parties last night and no one invited you. Where your head hurts and its probably cancer.

Yeah thats what today was for me. ugh. Being dramatic is totally exhausting. I am now going to crawl my dramatic little self in bed and hope that tomorrow I wake up feeling a little more rooted in well, reality. 

Intercession

True intercession involved bringing the person, or the circumstance that seems to be crashing in on you, before God, until you are changed by HIS attitude toward that person or circumstance.

-My Upmost for His Highest

Today there are several circumstances crashing in on me, some of them significant, some of them more along the lines of my selfishness. Today I will try to lift them up and seek Christs attitude towards these people and circumstances, that these times may be filled with Joy and Peace.

“A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices….”

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photo found here.

Its Saturday!

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Weekends for me are busier than weekdays because when you work at a church, Sunday is game day. But luckily, today I have found a little pocket of time where I have the apartment to myself (Richie is off buying himself a new laptop/tablet combo thing). I fully plan to plug in all my christmas tree lights, put this movie on, and prep for baking I am doing for a Christmas party my mom is hosting.

I am making Dark Chocolate Souffles and Salted Carmel Apple Tarts. Yum!

This morning I ate breakfast with a friend at this adorable bakery. Can you say Honey Lavender scones and salted carmel candy? (didn’t say it was a healthy breakfast).

Oh and, whose falling terribly behind on Christmas Shopping? This girl. I have plans to go raid my favorite store and cross my fingers they have something for everyone!

the little browns

 

Since we share the last name of my in-laws, Richie and I have lovingly adopted the title “The Little Browns” to help ease confusion amoungst family. Pretty cute right? Well us little Browns have decked the halls for Christmas, and celebrating is in full force around the house.

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Merry Christmas Season! ❤ the little browns

Bittersweet

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Last night was one of those nights that can be wrapped up in one word: laughter. Richie and I got home from back to back events and I looked over at him and was like, I have a headache from laughing so hard. It was one of those little gifts life sometimes hands you in the best possible way.

What was unique is that last night, amidst all the laughter, there was a deeply bittersweet feeling in me. We began the night by meeting with our small group, which is potentially our last time getting to meet with them. We all just kept cracking up at each other’s honest stories about life being married. I looked around the room genuinely grateful that I have gotten to be a part of this group, a group I have trusted, have opened up with, and learned so much from. I cross my fingers that we can meet again in the spring, but realistically, life may get in the way.

From this group we booked it over to my staff Christmas party. And oh my gosh did we laugh. We all sat around a long table with glasses full of crisp white wine and plates piles high with pineapple coconut cake and sweet potato pie and we opened up with each about all we are grateful for and what we hope for our little church in the coming year.

My experience with my staff has also been bittersweet. Since I am new on staff, I have only been around for a month, I am still struggling to find my place. It can be a little lonely, and there are some people who have been less than welcoming. But there are also people who have welcomed me with arms wide open, and that is so sweet. Looking around that table felt different than when I looked around the room earlier that night in small group. It felt like hope. Hope that real community will develop with these people, that reconciliation can happen, that growth will occur, and new opportunities found.

God gives and God takes away. I may not get to meet with my Small Group anymore, but He is so faithful to provide me with new communities. Sometimes they look different, but they all have the potential to be deeply impactful. I am so curious to see, as this year comes to an end, what next year will hold in store. It is a year brimming with potential.