Thanksgiving this year was a much needed break.
A holiday without all of the frills...one that truly caused me to sit (oh how I struggle with this) :) and reflect on how truly thankful I am in an overwhelming number of ways.
She and her beautiful family began this mission to help others: SOLE HOPE (watch the video below...it says so much more than I ever could)
This week I received an invitation...
My heart skipped a beat to receive this invite. I am so, so excited to meet you all!!!
I am a midwestern girl who adores fall, twinkle lights, tea parties, indy film, creativity, music, and my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. He is it!
I am married to a handsome handy-man who just finished seminary and I am blessed daily by his heart.
A few weeks ago now, we were short a vocalist for worship on Sunday. So I agreed to help.
For so long I have avoided singing on stage for worship, mostly because I prefer to blend in with the crowd...praising and worshiping my maker with no one watching.
No performance. No light show.
Just me and Him.
So, I sat there in the green room, behind the stage ... just minutes before we were on for worship.
My hands were grasping my water bottle tensely, when suddenly...while praying that the Lord would prepare my heart -- a wave of peace came over me.
The last day of our getaway was what I'd like to call...a relaxing adventure -- if that doesn't contradict itself :)
We woke up when we wanted, went for breakfast and then ventured out for an all day bike ride in Peninsula State Park!
(At the risk of sounding like Goldilocks...) The air was brisk and just right.
Not too hot and not too cold.
Usually the adventurer in me would want to have kept riding and riding fast, but we didn't.
We would stop at the water's edge, snap captures of the beautiful scenery and take it all in.
It was glorious. Just what we needed...together.
This past weekend, I was incredibly blessed to have the opportunity to attend a blogging conference through theInfluence Network.
Its beyond remarkable how this group of women (that I normally would not have been blessed to meet) came together through the God-Inspired ideas of a hand-full of amazing dreamers.
"MAKE YOUR ONLINE LIFE MEAN SOMETHING"
is their tag line and I think it is an incredibly beautiful idea.
Contrary to what so many believe about the internet, this online community is supportive, and encourages women to make the most of this web-based tool, whether it be through your business, Etsy Shop, or through your faith.
The speakers were awe inspiring, the venue was exquisite and the community took my breath away.
Barely tapping these keys, eyes streaming with tears, chest heaving,...I write this love letter to my sweet dreaming friend.
A soft, loyal, cuddly friend.
Yesterday, after 15 years, we had to say good-bye to my precious child-hood puppy. I knew it would be hard. I didnt know it would be this hard.
My head was buzzing with these words the moment I woke.
Words of such wisdom from Theodore Roosevelt,
"Comparison is the THIEF of Joy."
As of late, I have been incredibly thankful for the opportunities the Lord has put in our path...
And then I catch myself...putting myself down.
I have a theory...
I often wonder if the vintage/etsy/pinterest movement in decor and in life has been sparked by a hunger to get back to the basics...
A simpler time...A time of less chaos and more community...
People seem to be craving an earlier moment in time, as women and men make things from scratch...eat organic...pick up sewing or knitting, or make their own furniture.
One of those you stow away deep down in your memory to look back on for years to come...
Art was everywhere...on paper, on our kiddos faces, and in my heart because there was a song playing there...
We spent time reconnecting with precious old friends, sweet time with family,
and my husband was baptized!
Oh sweet summer...don't leave just yet...
Today marks a birthday for a man very special in my life.
Yes, we celebrate another year...but not just any year.
A year that has overcome unmatched odds... A story that only God could create.
If it weren't for the grace of God, he wouldn't be the vibrant living man he is today.
This man is my father. (I am about to gush with pride, so I apologize in advance :)
My dear college roommate from SHE DOES JUSTICE posted about us on her blog on Friday!
About our blog, art studio and our story of determination this to year to "stop talking and start doing..."
Please stay a while too and check out her incredible mission! She has a huge heart for the orphaned, adoption, and the poor. She has a lovely shop, all kinds of awesome give-aways and promotes a different mission that she features each month.
A few weeks ago, I had the honor and privilege to partner with Heart Love Place in Milwaukee as their photographer and artist for their annual Red Tie Auction.
Every time I visit, I am slayed by what God is doing there.
The leadership He has brought to this ministry is amazing.
It truly overwhelms me to think of where this mission all started...A man several years ago now had a dream.
You see, I was brought up and taught to never self-promote.To never say anything to bring attention to or about yourself and to always strive to be humble.
So, I grew up feeling incredibly uncomfortable when i had to talk about myself or tell anyone about something I did that was perceived as an achievement or a positive.
Now, we have a blog and are starting a business.
I LOVE the mission behind our business.
I LOVE sharing our ideas and dreams with the online world and I LOVE sharing our faith.
And yet, its really hard for me at the same time.