FYI: Posts will be sparse around here until I replace my laptop.... Coming back to work after Christmas break apparently was too hard and it quit on me!

30 December 2011

this past week...

was wonderful

It was filled with...

laughter / gifts / stories / smiles / presents / reading / late nights / games / memories / giggles / photography / faith / teasing / hugs / snow / playing with dolls / jokes / sleeping in / good books /delicious food / photo shoots / card games /  laughing / songs / 25 people in one giant house

This is what happens when my mom's family gets together. =)  We don't see each other often--they live 16-18 driving hours away--but have so much fun when we do. 

Entering in the beauty in design challenge // week 5.

Photo: taken by my wonderful and talented friend who agreed to come take family photos for us all.

Fonts: Perpetua, Sell Your Soul, and Cygnet Round

25 December 2011

Merry Christmas!

- - - Luke 2 - - - 

1 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.

4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

21 On the eighth day, when it was time to circumcise the child, he was named Jesus, the name the angel had given him before he was conceived.
Jesus Presented in the Temple 22 When the time came for the purification rites required by the Law of Moses, Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord 23 (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male is to be consecrated to the Lord”), 24 and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the Law of the Lord: “a pair of doves or two young pigeons.”

25 Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. 26 It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. 27 Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, 28 Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:

29 “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised,
you may now dismiss your servant in peace.
30 For my eyes have seen your salvation,
31 which you have prepared in the sight of all nations:
32 a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and the glory of your people Israel.”

33 The child’s father and mother marveled at what was said about him. 34 Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, 35 so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.”

36 There was also a prophet, Anna, the daughter of Penuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, 37 and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. 38 Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.

39 When Joseph and Mary had done everything required by the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee to their own town of Nazareth. 40 And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was on him.
The Boy Jesus at the Temple 41 Every year Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the Festival of the Passover. 42 When he was twelve years old, they went up to the festival, according to the custom. 43 After the festival was over, while his parents were returning home, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but they were unaware of it. 44 Thinking he was in their company, they traveled on for a day. Then they began looking for him among their relatives and friends. 45 When they did not find him, they went back to Jerusalem to look for him. 46 After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. 47 Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers. 48 When his parents saw him, they were astonished. His mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you.”

49 “Why were you searching for me?” he asked. “Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?” 50 But they did not understand what he was saying to them.

51 Then he went down to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. But his mother treasured all these things in her heart. 52 And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.

22 December 2011

a surplus of grace - a thankful thursday -

The other day I came across a post that really, really caught my attention. Why? Because it spoke straight to my heart--it was what I've been thinking and living, but in words.

I have thanked Him. For many things. 
I haven't thanked Him. For many things. 
He can change me. 
I ache to be thankful. 

Yes, yes, YES! my heart cried out as I read:

The surplus.
by noelle at seeing beauty.

What do you want?, He asked.

To be whole.
To be free from bitterness.
To see the good, true, and beautiful.
To live fully.
Ultimately, to give thanks.

Have you?

I have thanked Him. For many things.
For His grace, His kindness, His goodness and mercy.
I have given thanks for my few accomplishments.
I have thanked Him that I am so fortunate
And so blessed
And so full
And so able to get it all done.
(Silently, bitterly
Grieving the emptiness
Counting failure after failure.)

False gratitude.
Easy gratitude.
Like thanking my Savior for helping
(the same way I’d thank a small child for “helping”)
when in reality, I owe Him my life.

I haven’t thanked Him. For many things.
Consciously, unconsciously, I don’t really know.
But I know how bitter I remain
How it gnaws and aches in the silence
How I don’t understand
How I cling to “This shouldn’t have happened,” and “I never deserved this,”
How I wonder what I did wrong
And still think I could have prevented it.

I’ve conceded His goodness
Thanked Him for redemption,
for evidence of grace,
for sparing me from a harsher fate.
Thank Him in all? I’ve tried.
But thank Him for all?

How? Is that even required?

Can I force my soul to do the seemingly impossible,
To be thankful for that which reason does not permit us to appreciate as “good”
To be thankful not for the byproduct or some secondary effect, but for the very circumstance
To acknowledge as worthy that which pain deems unworthy of thanks
To call the deficit itself a surplus of grace?


But He can change me.

I ache to be thankful.
Not to tally my losses, because our God is not a glorified thief
Not to even the score, because our God is not a scorekeeper
Not to make it easy, because our God is an artist of broken pieces
But to live with unreasonable gratitude
And in so doing, to live fully
Beyond the threshold of joy.

So I thank Him. For many things. 
For a surplus of grace.

211: Thank You, Lord, for my Daddy's job six hours away. Thank you for the time with him on weekends made special by that circumstance. 
212: Thank You for the cold. The cold that makes me appreciate a warm house all the more. 
213: Thank You, Father, for human sinful nature causing strife and arguing resulting in separation. Thank you for the growth in my life that those circumstances caused.
214: Thank You that I sin. Thank you that I'm not perfect. Thank you that my failures cause me to fall on Your sinless, perfect, unfailing grace.
215: Thank You for a surplus of grace.

falling on Christ's grace,

20 December 2011

Tuesday's Tips - Lowerbar

For the longest time I wanted to add gadgets at the bottom of my blog, so that my sidebar wouldn't be so full, but I didn't want to have to switch templates. Here is a simple tutorial for how to add a three columns of gadgets at the bottom of your blog.
Feel free to customize the styling to your needs. (html basics for text, backgrounds, borders, padding & margins)

1) Find:
#sidebar-wrapper {

2) Underneath that section of code paste:
#lower-wrapper {
       padding: 0px 0px 0px 0px;
       width: 1100px;
#lowerbar-wrapper {
     border:1px solid #e6e6e6;
       float: left;
       margin: 0px 5px auto;
       padding-bottom: 0px;
       width: 32%;
       text-align: justify;
       line-height: 1.6em;
       word-wrap: break-word;
       overflow: hidden;
       .lowerbar {margin: 0; padding: 0;}
       .lowerbar .widget {margin: 0; padding: 10px 10px 0px 10px;}

3) Find:

4) Above that paste:
 /* -----   LOWER SECTION   ----- */
#lower {
       padding: 0px 0px 10px 0px;
       width: 100%;

.lowerbar h2 {
      margin: 0px 0px 0px 0px;
      padding: 3px 0px 3px 0px;
      text-align: center;
      font: 14px Century Gothic, Arial, Tahoma, Verdana;
      border-bottom:1px solid #e6e6e6;
.lowerbar ul {
      margin: 0px 0px 0px 0px;
      padding: 0px 0px 0px 0px;
      list-style-type: none;
.lowerbar li {
      margin: 0px 0px 2px 0px;
      padding: 0px 0px 1px 0px;
      border-bottom: 1px solid #e6e6e6;

5) Find:
<!-- end outer-wrapper -->

6) Above that paste:

<div id='lower'>
<div id='lower-wrapper'>
<div id='lowerbar-wrapper'>
<b:section class='lowerbar' id='lowerbar1' preferred='yes'>
<div id='lowerbar-wrapper'>
<b:section class='lowerbar' id='lowerbar2' preferred='yes'>
<div id='lowerbar-wrapper'>
<b:section class='lowerbar' id='lowerbar3' preferred='yes'>
<div style='clear: both;'/>
</div> </div>

Now when you go to add gadgets to your blog there will be three columns at the bottom for you to place them. =)

In Him,

18 December 2011

It is the Week Before Christmas & a Merry CHRISTmas to You!

- - - The Week Before Christmas - - -

'Twas the week before Christmas, and all through the town,
Not a sign of Baby Jesus, was anywhere to be found.
The people were all busy with Christmas time chores,
Like decorating, and baking, and shopping in stores.

No one sang, "Away in a manger, no crib for a bed."
Instead, they sang of Santa, dressed up in bright red.
Mama watched Martha Stewart, Papa drank from a tap.
As hour upon hour the presents they'd wrap.

Then what from the TV did they suddenly hear?
An ad, which told of a big sale down at Sears.
So away to the mall they all flew like a flash,
Buying some things on credit, and others with cash!

And, as they made their way home from their trip to the mall,
Did they think about Jesus? Oh, no, not at all.

Their lives were so busy with their Christmas time things,
They had no time to remember Christ Jesus, the King.
There were presents to wrap and cookies to bake.
How could they stop and remember the One who died for their sake?

To pray to the Savior, they had no time to stop.
Because they needed more time to "Shop till they drop!"
On Wal-mart! On K-mart! On Target! On Penney's!
On Hallmark! On Zales! A quick lunch at Denny's!
From the big stores downtown to the stores at the mall,
They would dash away, dash away, and visit them all!

And up on the roof, there arose such a clatter,
As grandpa hung icicle lights, using his brand new step ladder.
He hung lights that would flash. He hung lights that would twirl.
Yet, he never once prayed, to Jesus, the Light of the World.

Christ's eyes--how they twinkle!
Christ's Spirit--how merry!
Christ's love--how enormous!
All of our burdens--He'll carry!

So instead of being busy, overworked, and uptight.
Let's put Christ back in Christmas, and enjoy a good night.

As you celebrate this year, remember to put Christ back into Christmas, because it's okay to say Merry CHRISTmas! (do you remember this post from last year?)

Pass it on!

p.s. google 'let it snow' =D so fun! 

Rejoicing in Him,

17 December 2011

the life of Charlotte Melarn - a character sketch

A while back someone asked to read some of my writing from my history class. Here is a short character sketch that I wrote when we were studying the industrial revolution. (originally a ppt presentation with photos and works cited, but I didn't take the time to copy all that into the post...) 
The following is my own work--please don't copy. 

      The biting wind snapped at the passersby as they hurried down the street in the fading evening light. Charlotte Melarn shivered as she drew her shawl closer and walked closer to the looming brick buildings. Sighing she remembered former days of old when she didn’t have to walk the distance between the factory and her house. When the loom she operated wasn’t in the crowded and noisy factory but in her own little cottage. Reaching her door she smiled as she opened it, realizing how blessed her life had been these many years.

      Born into a comfortable weaving family in 1772, Charlotte grew up learning the skills of a weaver. As the oldest of seven children, she grew up with many responsibilities. In 1790, Charlotte married Edward Melarn who was also a weaver. They led a comfortable life those first few years as it was the middle of the ‘golden years’ for their trade. (Radcliffe) The average wage in the mid 1790’s was £1 10s a week. (Peacock) In 1792, their first child, Samuel, was born. He was to be the oldest of their five children. The family was able to have a small garden alongside their cottage as well as a cow. (Radcliffe) These were indeed the ‘golden years.’

      By 1803 the business was slowing down due to the increase in usage of the power looms. The power loom was invented in 1785 by Rev. Edmund Cartwright. (Peacock) In 1808 the Weavers’ Minimum Wage Bill was rejected. By now wages were down to 8s for an eighty-four hour week. (Peacock) The family was still doing well and managed through the financial difficulties. One by one, all of the children married and moved to their own homes.

     In 1832, Charlotte and Edward finally gave up their business. They could not keep going at only 5-7s a week even thought they were working over fifteen hours a day. (Peacock) They moved to the nearby city and found work at the factory operating power looms. The work was not as pleasant as it had been in their little cottage, but it was work.

     The door opened and closed, waking Charlotte from her musings. Edward was home and it was time to put supper on the table. As she brought the food to the table she remembered that they had always managed just fine and she was sure they would continue to do so, whatever might happen.

15 December 2011

all is grace - a thankful thursday -

162: encouraging songs to assist in the morning attitude adjustment necessary to have a good day--full of love, joy, and laughter.
All is Grace
shaun groves

all is grace
all is grace and grace enough

184: Yahweh - I Am that I Am

185:: birthday wishes --joyous, loud & laughing

186: balloons reflecting the snowscape out the window and the sweet little sister who thought them up


187: siblings with servant hearts - a day without chores as a gift of love to me

188: family traditions bringing back many memories of old

190: Daddy who comes home cheerful and makes us all laugh

191: clean rooms just vacuumed

192: Adonai - my Great Lord

198: Titus phrases that make us all laugh loud "eliminate the house!"

13 December 2011

Tuesday's Tip - For starters... (a guide to help you start designing)

I've had a couple questions recently about suggestions for starting designers. So I came up with a short list of what one would need to start designing their own blog. =)

a test blog

This is vital. Create a test blog that only you have access to. Try out your creative ideas without wrecking your current design. Blogger doesn't have a limit on how many blogs you can make so use it.

an image manipulation program

This is important. Create beautiful images with programs such as photoshop or gimp. (plus, gimp is free!)

a file host

Extremely important. Upload images and script files for your designs. I suggest imgur for photos and bravehost for files. They both offer free services.


Fonts are one way to make your text unique and stand out. I suggest free font sites such as dafontfontsykevin&amanda, or you can always google for a specific font. A suggestion: keep the main font something simple and easy to read. ;)

digital scrapbook kits

Now these aren't absolutely necessary, but do help in creating an attractive design. Some sites I recommend for free kits:
.summertime designs
.shabby princess
.computer scrapbooking

(go here to enter in a giveaway for a digital scrapbooking kit! open from now until the 26th of December)

multiple browsers/computers

Websites look different depending on the browser and computer one uses. Check your design in several different major browsers to make sure there are no problems! I use:
.internet explorer


You can have all the resources at hand but without creativity, your designs will never be beautiful. So let your imaginations soar!

Any questions or suggestions? --let me know!

12 December 2011

a miscellany monday

I just successfully removed the glass sliver that has been in my finger since I put up our Christmas lights--the day after Thanksgiving!

The name of God for our advent calendar today is Jehovah Rohi -- the Lord is my shepherd. (Psalm 23)

My history/math extra credit problem for the week:
      A US military cook is preparing beans for troops in Vietnam (I know I’m stretching it but I’m running out of math problems, so just go with it).  A pot contains 75 white beans and 150 black ones. Next to the pot is a large pile of black beans.
      The somewhat demented cook removes the beans from the pot, one at a time, according to the following strange rule: He removes two beans from the pot at random. If at least one of the beans is black, he places it on the bean-pile and drops the other bean, no matter what color, back in the pot. If both beans are white, on the other hand, he discards both of them and removes one black bean from the pile and drops it in the pot.
      At each turn of this procedure, the pot has one less bean in it. Eventually, just one bean is left in the pot. What color is it? (since you could get this right by a 50/50 guess, 1 pt for right answer, 2 points if you can explain it)

Oh the hilariousness of it all. =P

I've been walking in a winter wonderland since Thursday morning (including the below freezing temperatures--daddy will you please fix my window so that my fingers no longer freeze during school?!)


Toothpaste works wonders on jewelry. My purity ring is now just as shiny and sparkling as my new matching necklace. =) It had gotten rather dingy after a year of constant wear...especially a summer spent working in a barn...but the toothpaste trick cleaned it up like new! I need to take photos of it with my necklace sometime...

Miscellany Monday @
lowercase letters
<< linking up with Carissa

Happy Monday, friends!

In Christ,

11 December 2011

Jesus & a Merry Christmas

His name is Wonderful: this takes care of the dullness of life. We no longer need to live on the cheap substitutes of the world in order to have excitement and enjoyment. Jesus Christ makes everything wonderful.
His name is Counselor: this takes care of the decisions of life. We no longer will be baffled by the problems of life, wondering what step to take next. With Jesus Christ as our Counselor, we will have the wisdom that we need to make the right decision.
His name is The Mighty God: this takes care of the demands of life. And life is demanding! Sometimes we feel like giving up; but through Jesus Christ we can have the strength that we need to continue--and to conquer.
his name is The Everlasting Father: this takes care of the dimensions of life. We can become a part of eternity! A whole new dimension of living can be ours through Jesus Christ, when the government of our life on His shoulders.
His name is The Prince of Peace: this takes care of the disturbances of life. How we long for lasting peace within! What we would not give for the secret of poise and confidence in a threatening world! The answer is--Jesus Christ. he is the Prince of Peace, and when He controls the government of your life, He gives you peace. (Warren Wiersbe, His Name Is Wonderful, Tyndale House, 1976, page 17)

The Mighty God!
The Everlasting Father!
The Prince of Peace!

I hope you have made Him 
your Counselor, 
your Mighty God, 
your Everlasting Father, 
your Prince of Peace.  
Because then you can truly have a merry Christmas!

(this is what I am reciting at a Seniors' Luncheon at our local Bible conference--my siblings are all playing piano/violin but as I haven't touched the piano in a long while I'm reciting this. thought I would share with you because it has such truth in it.) 

Love in Christ,

08 December 2011

the life I have been given - a thankful thursday -

168: dishwater to make hands warm
171: warm fires to chase away chill-bumps
172: encouraging song today: Sun & Moon by Phil Wickham
Sun & Moon
-phil wickham--

if You are the sun
then I wanna be the moon
I wanna reflect the light that shines from You

173: the life I have been given & another year to live--today is my birthday ;)
179: newly made beds to slip under heavy covers - a weight of warmth
180: Christmas lights warm and cheery =)


181: El Shaddai - Almighty God
182: fresh snow to make world newly beautiful

entering in iLove winter wonderland

Have a wonderful evening, friends!

Love in Christ,

01 December 2011

the Beauty in Design ...a challenge

Hannah of Beauty Design Studios and I have come up with a design challenge for her designers' community. Head over there for more information. =D (she is also the one who design my current blog design)

My entry for this week's challenge:

click to view the full image--my post area is not as wide as the specified size


(I used this stock photo for the images.) 
What do you think? Head on over there to view more entries. =)

In Christ,

the only thing - a thankful thursday -

86: sitting on the roof to catch the last of the sun's warm rays
before they dip behind the mountain dark

87: encouraging worship music that speaks to the heart
(the only thing by ronnie freeman)

92: vanilla caramel candles + tea + Christmas music + drawing

100: the joy and peace that comes with being in God's word
and obeying His will

105: tears washing down newness

112: hands open wide -- in praise


129: sleep - refreshing, restoring, & rejuvenating

141: glorious light to capture with my lens


157: a houseful of friends, laughter, and good food - hospitality

The Only Thing
--ronnie freeman--

I heard someone say
The other day
They'd seen in me
True love displayed
Blessed by something
I had done for them
No sooner
Did they speak those words
I found myself
Somehow disturbed
Uneasy as I took their compliment
Because I know
The heart inside this man
And I know the truth of who I am

The only thing that's good in me
I know me well enough to know
No matter what this life may show
The only thing that's good in me
Is Jesus
It's You
It's You
It's You
Only You

In Christ,

29 November 2011

Tuesday's Tip - customizing the comment link

Ever wanted to make your comment link more visible to readers? Here's a simple how-to! =)

1) Search for

.comment-link {

2) Customize away!
Customize that section of code to whatever you'd like. For some ideas of how to customize it, use my HTML basics explanations: (Borders / Text / Backgrounds / Padding & Margins)

For an example, my link looks like this:
(hover over image for link reaction to mouse hover)

and my code looks like this:
.comment-link {
display: inline;
font-family:'Times New Roman', arial, sans-serif;
margin: 0px;
width: 150px;
.comment-link:hover {
display: inline;
font-family:'Times New Roman', arial, sans-serif;
margin: 0px;
width: 150px;

3) Save 
and enjoy! ;)

Have a question? Let me know in a comment, and I'll get back asap. =)

24 November 2011

a thankful thursday

Smile, its that time of year again. When everyone slows down, amongst all the hustle and bustle, long enough to say a short thank you.
Thank you Lord for...
(my one thousand gifts: #130-156)

A new day to live. Brothers and their silly faces. the ability to Capture life around me. Daddy coming home two days earlier this week. Encouraging notes from friends. my Family--crazy and loving, yes. =)


 Grace, unending grace.  the Hope that living in CHRIST gives. having wireless Internet, that took so long to work. Jokes shared among siblings. Kind words spoken between siblings. glorious Light to capture with my lens.


looking forward to Monday with no school. looking back through Notebooks full of memories. the Orange glow of the sun sinking below the mountain. delicious Pumpkin pie brightened by the sunlight.


  Quilts to snuggle under and escape the cold. Remembering good times long past, a somewhat bittersweet feeling.  a silly Sister that makes me laugh.
completely unedited, this is exactly how the camera took it--gives a whole new meaning to 'red eye'--haha! =D
first Thessalonians 5:16-18--so challenging. the Unfathomable love of my savior.  the smell of Vanilla caramel candles.  the emotion captured in black & White photos.


eXcitement about friends coming to visit. Yearly traditions that bring back many memories--we go to get our  christmas tree tomorrow! seeing Zeal for the Lord in friends--so encouraging.

Finding Joy | The ABC's of Thanks

<<  linking up with rachel

what are you thankful for this thursday?

Love in Christ,

22 November 2011

Tuesday's Tips -Rotating Header

I first learned how to do this by Beauty Design Studios tutorial [here].
Thank you Hannah, for allowing me to post it here!

For an example of what this looks like, go to my photography blog [here].

1} Create your series of images--up to ten. You want them to all be the same size.
For example these are a few mine for my photography blog:

2} Upload your images to an image host. I suggest imgur. =)

3} Paste your image links into the form at this site [here]. NOTE: this site is full of pop-ups and ads. be careful.

4} Paste the code you are given at that site into a HTML/Javascript widget on your blog. Ta-da! Enjoy your new and amazing header. =)
(you could also use this tutorial for something other than your header if you want--let your imagination soar!)

If you have any questions, feel free to let me know. ;)

In Christ,

14 November 2011

14NOV2011 a miscellany monday

I had my first 'collision' with another vehicle yesterday--what an experience! Driving my dad's huge, stick shift, ginormous, diesel, monstrous, black pickup truck home from Church. Scary. This was my second time driving it. Right after I turned onto the road heading home a little vehicle turned afterwards and proceeded to drive right on my tail. Lets just say he was not happy that I was going the speed limit. I was busy concentrating on shifting gears while staying on my side of the road going around tight mountainous turns. I approach an intersection at the top of the hill. Downshift then brake. I'm still not quite sure what I did, but the truck rolled backwards a few feet. Remember how the guy was on my tail? Yeah, I tapped his bumper. A honking horn, words in anger, and a shaking fist was the response I got from the irate driver. Nearly every other word he said to my dad and me was unwholesome. Yay. My dad got out of the truck and went to examine the damage. He said that you could barely tell that there had been a collision. The other man said that his $500 bumper was ruined. Pictures were taken and words were exchanged. After probably fifteen minutes we left. Supposedly he is going to file a court claim. Driving a manual transmission diesel truck is not my idea of fun, but it could have been worse--much worse. =P Who knows? Maybe my driving the speed limit (and keeping him at it too) saved him a turn too quickly taken and a totaled car as opposed to a mark on his bumper? I'm just glad that it is over and grateful to my Daddy who handled the situation so well. =)

I'm finished with my history project on propaganda in the U.S. during WWI. I'm quite happy with how it turned out. I'll see if my teacher is as happy as I am...sometime...whenever he gets around to grading it...

Please be praying for my grandma--she was in the hospital this past week for her heart. It had an irregular beat and was too fast. They have her on new medication now.
I wrote my heart out in a guest post over at Living on Literary Lane today [here].  Head on over to read! (while you're there leave Elizabeth a sweet little note to read when she comes back from her blogging break)

How was your Monday?

In Christ,

10 November 2011

On days like today...

It is on rainy days like today that I...

.wish for the sunny days of summer

.come to the conclusion that math=evil (thanks trig & pre calc!)

.sit next to the roaring woodstove sipping hot chocolate

.write a guest post (head on over to Bree's blog, He Designs My Life, to read my guest post [here], while you're there leave her a sweet little note too)

.whisper to myself what I have to get done this afternoon as I walk down the hallway, only to get a weird look from my little sister =)

What do you do on days like today?

Love in Christ,

02 November 2011

Today is...

A beautiful sunny day. The sky is brilliantly blue. The grass is still green underneath a layer of frost. The few leaves left on the trees are illuminated to vibrant colors. Today is a beautiful day.
Today is special because of another reason too...
Today is my one year blogoversary! One year ago today, I published my first post on this blog. Yippie! =) 
(if you don't mind, head over to the sidebar and vote on the poll--I'm just curious to know)

This verse stuck out to me in my devotions this morning and I thought I'd share:

In Christ,

01 November 2011

Tuesday's Tips -Customizing Link Appearance

(requested by Rebecca)

how to find the code
1) Go to your dashboard > template > edit HTML
2) Search for the code similar to this:

a:link {
a:visited {
a:hover {

3) edit however you'd like and save your template!

how to edit the code
a:link controls what a link looks like when you first load the page and/or don't do anything to it
a:visited controls what a link looks like after you've visited it
a:hover controls what a link looks like when you hover your mouse over it

For ideas on how to customize links, go to my post [here]

Have a question? Ask away!

In Christ,

31 October 2011

The Five Scariest Things You Can Do This Halloween

(otherwise entitled: my opinion on halloween)

not my image - from link below
I agree entirely with [this article] at vision forum. I challenge you to go read it. What are your thoughts on the matter? Agree or disagree, and why?

The fear of the Lord is to hate evil.
-Proverbs 8:13

Personally, my family doesn't celebrate the holiday. Usually, we host 'Biography Dress Up Night' with friends. Everyone dresses up like a historical character and gives a short 'speech' on the life of their character. Afterwards everyone else has to guess who they are. =)

In Christ,

30 October 2011

Created for a Purpose

It is on mornings like this morning when I remember...

I am created to worship, to praise, to glorify God.

Right now, my family is a part of a Church plant in a nearby town. It started over the summer while I was at camp. Anyways, ever since coming home, I've been working downstairs with the 4 & 5 year-olds. Except for this morning.
We only have one service, so the Sunday-school classes for the kids are going on at the same time as the service upstairs. Last week a rotation schedule was arranged so that everyone has the opportunity to be upstairs every-other-week. This morning was the first time I've been a part of the audience and not doing something else during worship.

And oh, it was so good.

I don't remember the songs we sang, but it was so good to worship as a body of believers. I do remember the sermon, and it was very relevant. "How to be Rich" based on 1 Chronicles 29:10-16.

10 David praised the LORD in the presence of the whole assembly, saying, “Praise be to you, LORD, the God of our father Israel, from everlasting to everlasting. 11 Yours, LORD, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is yours. Yours, LORD, is the kingdom; you are exalted as head over all. 12 Wealth and honor come from you; you are the ruler of all things. In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all. 13 Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name. 14 “But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand. 15 We are foreigners and strangers in your sight, as were all our ancestors. Our days on earth are like a shadow, without hope. 16 LORD our God, all this abundance that we have provided for building you a temple for your Holy Name comes from your hand, and all of it belongs to you.

Note that it wasn't on how to become rich but how to be rich. Because we are rich according to Proverbs 30:8-9. Do you have to steal to eat each day or do you have more food than you'll eat today? We are to act like stewards, not owners, because that is what we are. (all this abundance...comes from Your hand, and all of it belongs to you)  We are grateful stewards, not guilty ones. It was so good. Hebrews 10:24-25

Remembering is just half of it. The other half is obedience. So I obey--I worship, praise, and glorify my Savior!

paul baloche
Look inside the mystery,
See the empty cross
See the risen Savior,
Victorious and strong
No one else above Him
None as strong to save
He alone has conquered,
The power of the grave

Look beyond the tombstone
See the living God
See the resurrected
The ruler of my heart
No one else above Him
None to match His worth
The hope of His returning
Fills the universe

Glorious, my eyes have the seen the glory of the Lord
Glorious, He stands above the rulers of the Earth
Glorious, glorious
Lord, You are glorious

(This is my one-hundredth post!)

Love in Christ,

25 October 2011

Tuesday's Tips -Numbering Comments

(Last week Mary Ann asked for this tutorial so here it is!)

Numbered comments are great if you're hosting a giveaway or blog party because it is that much easier to pick a winner by number. =)

First things first, numbering comments only work if they are embedded below your post

1.) Go to your dashboard > template > edit HTML > and click 'Expand Widget Templates'

2.) Search for this code:
<b:loop values='data:post.comments' var='comment'>
(I suggest using find option on your browser: Ctrl + F)

3.) Above that code paste this code:
<script type='text/javascript'>var commentscounter=0;</script>
This is the script that makes the numbers work.

4.) Search for this code:

5.)  Below that code paste this code:
<span class="numberingcomments" style="float: right; font-size: 40px;"><a expr:href="data:comment.url" href="" title="comment link"><script type="text/javascript">
This is the code that makes the numbers appear. You can change the appearance by editing the style="" section.

As always, if you have any questions--ask away!

In Christ,

24 October 2011

To Realize...

(to realize: to be fully aware) 

to realize...that I've slipped so much. 
When was the last time I spent time just me and Jesus? Spending time in His word, praying, and journaling? I honestly couldn't remember, when I asked myself that question this past week. How could I have slipped so much? This summer I grew so much. The biggest thing being that I daily set aside time to be in the Word. And now I can't remember the last time I did just that? The best time to begin anew is today.

to realize...that photography could be my career. 
I guess before I always thought of it as just a hobby. But you know what--I'm going to take photos the rest of my life, it doesn't matter if no one sees them, I'm going to take photos. Why not turn that into something that I get paid for and counts as work? Why not turn it into a business that could bless others and not just myself? I'm not positive that this is what I'm going to do, but it is an idea. in the meantime, does anyone have any good senior project ideas that deal with photography?

to realize...that I have a lot to be thankful for.
I have been blessed so much, given so much good from God. When hard times come, shouldn't I remember all that He has done for me in the past and remember all that He has promised me in the future?
Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble? 
-Job 2:10

For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
-Jeremiah 29:11

Have you realized anything recently?

In Christ,

18 October 2011

Tuesday's Tips -CSS Basics backgrounds

I've posted many tutorials on how to create different things for your blog. In each of those tutorials I've mentioned ways that you can customize the object. I've gotten several questions asking for more ways to customize the CSS. So I'm going to start a little series on CSS Basics. Some of the topics will include backgrounds, borders, text styles, links, and more. That way you'll have a better understanding of what CSS codes you can add to customize the tutorials. =)

There are two different types of backgrounds, ones with color and ones with an image.

background: #ffffff;
Either of these codes will control the background color. Use the html code for the color you want your background to be. Do not delete the '#' symbol. ([here] is an online color picker, use the number at the top)

 For example:

background-image:url('IMAGE DIRECT LINK');
This is where you will put the direct link to your image that you want to be the background. You will have to upload it to an image host first, before you can get the direct link. (I suggest using imgur or photobucket as your photo host) Do not delete the quotation marks around the url.

background-position: 0% 0%;
This controls the position of your background image. Only change the numbers and do not delete the percentage marks. 

This controls if your image scrolls or is fixed when scrolling. (see examples below)

background-position: 0% 0%;

background-position: 0% 0%;

If you have any questions--don't hesitate to ask! Also, if you have anything that you want me to cover on Tuesday's Tips let me know. (I'm kind of running out of ideas...suggestions are very welcome!)

In Christ,

06 October 2011

ten-thousand reasons for my heart to find


A song that has been stuck in my head the past couple days. =)

10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord)
--matt redman--

Bless the Lord, O my soul
O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I'll worship Your holy name

The sun comes up, it's a new day dawning
It's time to sing Your song again
Whatever may pass, and whatever lies before me
Let me be singing when the evening comes

You're rich in love, and You're slow to anger
Your name is great, and Your heart is kind
For all Your goodness I will keep on singing
Ten thousand reasons for my heart to find

And on that day when my strength is failing
The end draws near and my time has come
Still my soul will sing Your praise unending
Ten thousand years and then forevermore

Jesus, I'll worship Your holy name
Lord, I'll worship Your holy name

Sing like never before
O my soul
I'll worship Your holy name
Jesus, I'll worship Your holy name
I'll worship Your holy name

In Christ,

04 October 2011

Tuesday's Tips -CSS Basics Padding & Margins

I've posted many tutorials on how to create different things for your blog. In each of those tutorials I've mentioned ways that you can customize the object. I've gotten several questions asking for more ways to customize the CSS. So I'm going to start a little series on CSS Basics. Some of the topics will include backgrounds, borders, text styles, links, and more. That way you'll have a better understanding of what CSS codes you can add to customize the tutorials. =)

Padding & Margins Defined
Margin is the space between the item and other items.
Padding is the space between the content of the item and the edge of the item.
Padding & Margins and their placement
They can be placed on any side of the object or all around.


Padding & Margins and their size
They are measured in pixels(px) and can be positive or negative numbers.

The Big Picture
Finished padding and margin code would look something like this:


01 October 2011

Welcome October

I can't believe it is October already...
photos taken by me last october
 In Christ,

29 September 2011

There is Grace for Today

Failings. Harsh Words. Hurt Glances. Rude Comments. Tears. Failings.
Yet there is grace and forgiveness and love.

"But God demonstrated His own love for us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." 
-Romans 5:8

take a walk to the Mailbox

SIX steps to help fix a day gone bad:
1 - listen to worship music
2 - pray, read the Bible, and write
3 - bake something sweet
4 - write a handwritten letter to a friend
5 - take a walk to the mailbox, praying and praising, with camera in hand
6 - smile, genuine and real

Love in Christ,

28 September 2011

Wednesday Weekly -09SEP11-

Favorite things from this week:
 1. driving through autumn covered dirt roads--dripping with rain
 2. receiving letters in the mail from friends
 3. shuttercal :)

Favorite verse from this week:

Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
- Hebrews 12:1-2

Favorite posts from this week:
 1. "I love her this much" by Annie at annie pliego photography 
"It's not the matching clothes, but the beautiful life they share."
 2. ascent by Liz at awake
"We all need to fly once in a while.
The rush of joy, the hint of magic, the pensiveness of loss.. It's all part of the ascent. And once you experience it, you are left to look forward to the descent, where the adventure truly will begin."
 3. dear sam, by Hannah at aspire
"I guess what I'm trying to say is, I love you, Samuel, and am so proud of you. I love the way when you laugh your whole body shakes because you're overcome. I love the way your blue eyes smile and your cheeks dimple and you pretend to be shy. I love your roars and your love of john deere and the way you say "me gwooten-fwee!" I love your heart and I love you, sweet Samuel!
And so today, I'm praising God for you. For your life."

  Favorite photos from this week:
 1. France by Sara

 2.  Another Season by Liz

 3. Blue Jay by Cassie


These are my favorite things this week--what are yours?

It is raining here--pouring, really. A perfect day to bake sweets,curl up with a good book, and watch a movie as a family later in the evening.

Have a wonderful Wednesday! =)

Love in Christ,

24 September 2011

I am a...

I diddle and dawdle until the last minute until I have to do it.
I waste time doing all sorts of things--reading blogs, facebook, photography websites, etc when I should be doing school or chores.
It is not something I'm proud of.

A while ago my lovely sister found an awesome app for google chrome, the browser I use, called Stay Focused. What does it do? "StayFocusd increases your productivity by limiting the amount of time that you can spend on time-wasting websites." Honestly, I think it is really quite effective for the most part. Of course, it is always my responsibility to spend my time wisely, but I think this is a helpful tool. =)

a post is never really complete without a photo...

I love autumn. =)
Do you struggle with procrastination?

Love in Christ,