Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
We are all headed to my sister's house in Georgia because she is 8 months pregnant! This year my brother is bringing the turkey and ham so all I have to do are the sides and dessert. This is a huge relief because my sister and I are not the best at cooking a turkey and a ham at the same time in the same oven! Honestly I have no idea how my mom would do it every year. I need about 10 ovens to cook everything.

Again another holiday where my mom is not here to share with us. I know she is looking down and is proud that we are not eating at a restaurant for Thanksgiving dinner. :) I am very thankful for my family and friends! I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving!!

Learning how to sew.....

My friend Frances had her mom recently teach her how to sew. Within the past couple of months I have really have a desire to learn how to. My mom and grandmother were wonderful at it. I can remember them both having the sewing machine on the kitchen table and fabric and patterns would be scattered across the kitchen floor when my grandmother would come visit.

So Frances agreed to teach me! I pulled out my mom's sewing machine with all her stuff she used. It brought back wonderful memories of my mom making me stand on a chair in the kitchen so she could hem a pair of pants for me.

Let me give you some back round on my sewing capabilities. I am not in any way crafty! I rather buy it then make it. I didn't even know how to turn the machine or or sew a button on a shirt! So Frances was in for it. I recently purchased new bedding from West Elm and wanted some pillows that would go with it that would add some color.

I also made my an upholstered head board. The great thing about this is you can change out the fabric on it when you get sick of it. I bought some new fabric that now matches my new pillows. I will post pics of that when I finish that project.

Back to the pillows. I spent a total $35.00 on them. Joann's is WONDERFUL. I am very proud of myself for completing the pillows. Here are a few pics from the night.

My first hem!

Wow 2 years....

Today is 2 years since my sweet mom passed away. She was battling Ovarian Cancer for 5-1/2 years. My dad and mom were on their 29th wedding anniversary trip to Disney the week before. There is not a day that goes by that I do not think about my mom. People say it gets easier but it doesn't. The whole in my heart for her will never be filled.

I wanted to share a few of the things that made my mom so special to me.

1. My mom didn't work. The rest of us did. When she would be out and about some days she would always call my work phone to see what I was up too. One day I answered it and all I heard was..."Yes I would like a cheeseburger, fries and a coke." While she was dialing me she was ordering her lunch. Of course she couldn't wait until she got through the drive thru line to call me! :)

2. She always loved a bargain and always found one wherever she was. She went to CVS to buy a few things when she passed by a shopping cart with a sign saying "Buy 1 get 1 free." She decided to buy 10. Yes 10 cans of Cheese Whiz. No one in my family even likes Cheese Whiz! All 10 cans sat in the cabinet for years!

3. Christmas was my mom's favorite holiday and I am not kidding. She would start shopping in July and put things away. Well that has its problems. My mom would wrap presents and put the wrong names on them or hide them and then forget about them and find the presents 2 months after Christmas!

4. She would buy her own Christmas presents and write “To: Mom, From: Santa”. I love it! I guess that way she would get what she wants.

5. Every year for my birthday I would take the day off and she would take me shopping. Birthdays are hard. Really every holiday is hard because she was such a giver.

6. I could always count on her eating an Auntie Anne’s pretzel with me at the mall.

I miss my mom everyday! I would have never thought I would be 25 without my mom. I have so much more to do in life and need my mom to be there with me. I know she is proud of all us. Her and my dad did a wonderful job raising all 4 of us. I am so lucky to have 2 wonderful sisters and a wonderful brother. I have the BEST dad in the world. He would do anything for any of us. Life is never easy and there will always be mountains and valleys that you will go through. I know I will see my mom again and that makes me so happy.

Life is tough...

Sometimes the Lord chooses to bring us closer to Himself by blessing us, providing gifts, & answering prayers. Other times He chooses to bring us closer to Himself by taking away things in our life, to shift our focus back on Him and off of the things of the world that we place our contentment and pride in. But either way, He's bringing us closer to the Father.

The Dream Giver

I have started reading this book someone recommended to me. It basically talks about Ordinary, who dares to leave the Land of Familiar to pursue his Big Dream. We all have big dream, one that might change our lives. So this book is about rising above ordinary, conquer your fears, and overcome the idea that obstacles that keep you from living your big dream.

I often think my dreams are hopeless our out of reach! The book asks the question “Are you waiting for something or someone to make your dream happen?” Wow that is a big one for me. When I look at my life now I thought I would be in a different place then where I am now. I know that God is in control of my life and if this is where he wants me to be than I need to be ok with it.
This morning was Day 2 of training. I promise I won't update you daily! It was a little bit easier getting up but harder to run today. I know my body just needs to get back into shape.

On another note. I love all kinds of music. You would be surprised if you looked at my IPOD. I have to spread the love around. One of my favorite Christian bands is The David Crowder Band. Here are the lyrics from their new song "How He Loves Me". It is awesome!

He is jealous for me,
Loves like a hurricane, I am a tree,
Bending beneath the weight of his wind and mercy.
When all of a sudden,
I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory,
And I realize just how beautiful You are,
And how great Your affections are for me.

And oh, how He loves us so,
Oh how He loves us,
How He loves us all

Yeah, He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves.
Yeah, He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves.

We are His portion and He is our prize,
Drawn to redemption by the grace in His eyes,
If grace is an ocean, we’re all sinking.
So Heaven meets earth like a sloppy wet kiss,
And my heart turns violently inside of my chest,
I don’t have time to maintain these regrets,
When I think about, the way…

He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves us,
Oh how He loves.
Yeah, He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves.

Well, I thought about You the day Stephen died,
And You met me between my breaking.
I know that I still love You, God, despite the agony.
...They want to tell me You're cruel,
But if Stephen could sing, he'd say it's not true, cause...

Cause He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves us.
Whoa! how He loves us.
Whoa! how He loves.
Yeah, He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves us,
Whoa! how He loves.

Day 1

Today was my first day of training for my 10K. 5:15am came way to early! I have to say I am very proud of myself that I was able to get up and run. When I have tried this in the past I usually roll over and go back to bed. I am not a morning person. Now I know I can do it. I feel awake and excited about the adventure. It was nice to be able to have enough time this morning to have breakfast and a cup of coffee. Hopefully this will keep up. I will keep you posted on how it goes! HAPPY MONDAY!

My sister came over this weekend and she was able to help me with my blog background and header! YAY! I am so excited we got it working. Thanks Erin

New Adventure

Me and two of my friends in my bible study have decided to do a 10K. After I said yes I thought about it...what was I thinking. I have done one 5k in my life. Yes I said ONE. I have done the Couch 2 5K and right before the race I came down with the flu. So I know I can get up to at least 3 miles. I will keep you updated. Say a prayer that I can stick with it and do it for me!

On another note, on my way into work this morning I heard the new Need To Breathe song on the radio and thought I would share the lyrics with everyone. They are wonderful!

Lay 'Em Down
by Need to Breathe

Come down to the river
Come and let yourself in
Make good on a promise
To never hurt again
If you're lost and lonely
You're Broken down
Bring all of your troubles
Come lay 'em down
All you sinners
And the weak at heart
All you helpless
On the boulevards
Wherever you are now
Whatever evil you've found
Bring all of your troubles
And come lay 'em down
We're all tied to the same old failings
Finding shelter in things we know
We're all dirty like corrupted small towns
We'll bring our troubles
We'll bring our troubles lay 'em down
All you rich men
And the high above
All those with
And without love
All you burdened
Broken down
Bring all of your troubles
Come lay 'em down
In His Most Precious Love....and with mine!!!

Turning Trials into Triumphs

If we are going to turn trials into triumphs, we must obey 4 imperatives: count, know, let and ask.

1. Count-A Joyful Attitude
God tells us to expect trials. We cannot always expect everything to go our way. I know for me I struggle with that a lot. I need to let go and turn it over to the Lord and he will show me the right direction. When trials come give thanks to the Lord and adopt a joyful attitude.

2. Know-An Understanding Mind
God always tests us to bring out the best; Satan tempts us to bring out the worst. This is one of my favorite verses. "And we know that all things work together for good" Romans 8:28.

3. Let-A Surrendered Will
God's goal for our lives is maturity. God builds character before he calls to service. He must work in us before he works through us.

4. Ask-A Believing Heart
When we are going through God-ordained difficulties, what should we pray about? Ask God for wisdom. We need wisdom so we will not waste the opportunities God is giving us to mature.

Working on BLog

So I am trying to figure out this blog thing and I can't get it right. So hang on while I am working it out!

Be Mature

We are starting bible study again on Tuesday. We have decided to study James. The book is called "Be Mature". I did the first study last night and loved it. I will share more on this study as we go.

Food for Thought

"Sometimes the Lord chooses to bring us closer to Himself by blessing us,providing gifts, & answering prayers. Other times He chooses to bring us closer to Himself by taking away things in our life-to shift our focus back on Him and off of the things of the world that we place our contentment and pride in. But either way, He's bringing us closer to the Father."

"The workplace is a common area of life where we find it easy to live out our own agendas. For some reason, we seem to think that once we sit down at our desk, report for duty or clock in, we enter a "No God Allowed" zone. How sad -- when He stands ready and waiting to not only equip and empower us to be the best employee we can be, but desires to pour out His blessings upon our work.
An even greater opportunity and blessing comes when God uses us in the workplace to share Him and His message of love and restoration with those who are seeking Him. God strategically places us on a chosen mission field called "job". A fellow employee needs to see a godly response to unfair criticism. A boss needs to witness the quiet, gracious spirit of submission -- even in the face of a difficult job change. A fully devoted follower may be the only person who reaches out and ministers to someone in need. Make no mistake, friend. Everyone on the job is watching to see if we are "the real deal". It may be the most important "sermon" they ever hear.
I challenge you to do your work "unto Him" and see what He does in and through a life committed to making Him Lord of all!"

A few of my favorite verses

I wanted to share a few of my favorite bible verses. Please add you favorites. Enjoy!

"His faithful love endures forever." Psalm 118:2

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding." Proverbs 3:5

"If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn away from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me." Luke 9:23

"Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done." Philippians 4:6

"Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you who belong to Christ Jesus." 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

"The grass withers and the flowers fade, but the word of our God stands forever." Isaiah 40:8

"Unload all your worries onto him, since he is looking after you." 1 Peter 5:7

4th of July

For the 4th of July my dad, little sister and I headed over to Atlanta to visit my older sister and brother-in-law. Friday we headed to the outlet mall to do some shopping. We came away with one Pottery Barn computer chair for my sister for college, 4 pairs of socks for my dad (he was pretty pumped about them) and one sunglass case holder.

Saturday was the big day we were headed out around 9:30 after a great breakfast my sister cooked for us to the tubing place Erin and Ryan found. We loaded up the cooler and headed out. Once we were all signed in all we were waiting on was the go ahead to load the "cheese wagon". Shannon was pretty pumped about riding it! When we arrived at the "launch" site we were told to grab our tube and head to the water. The bus would pick us up in 2 hours 1/4 mile past the bridge. Ok so we walked to the water's edge. As everyone is running past us to put their tubes in we see them come to a screeching hault. They all thought the water was nice and warm they were wrong! I stuck my toe in the water and it was FREEZING! After about 5 minutes on trying to figure out how to get in the tube without getting wet we were all in and tied together and floating down the river. It was very relaxing and fun!

Discovering a New Hobby

So I'm thinking about starting a new hobby. I saw these cute canvases that were painted and had different bible verses on them. I thought I might be able to make some of these for my new hobby. Who knows how mine will turn out. Here are some inspiration photos.

Birthday Party

My 25th birthday was on Tuesday. I had bible study that night so the girls brought me ice cream to celebrate. Suzanne and some others planned a birthday dinner for me on Saturday night. I was told to meet at Suzanne's at 4:00pm. Our plans were to play some games (our group loves some Mad Gab) then head to Stix. When I got to her house they surprised me. Instead we were doing a Scavenger Hunt around Birmingham. We were divided up into teams and headed out to get pictures of items on our list. Some of these included a picture of the "Saturday Preacher Man" on Lakeshore, picture of the entire team in a shopping cart (I think I pulled a muscle trying to get in the cart), picture of a team member getting frisked, picture of a team member "pinching" Vulcan's butt. The list went on.

We had to be at McWane Center by 5:45. We arrived there to find out that everyone was asked questions about me and if you answered correctly you were given puzzle pieces. When you had all you pieces the puzzle was in the form of Mad Gab! It took us FOREVER to figure it out! Once we got it correct we were off with another list of items we had to find. Some of these included; count the number of benches in Lynn Park (36 in case you are wondering), count the number of seats in the front row in the Alabama Theatre, just to name a few. We were told to be back at Nicole's by 7:30. We, of course, were the first ones back! The girls were grilling out for me and had a cookie cake which is my favorite! They all put so much work into this and I was so surprised!

Fear of the Lord

We are studying Proverbs in my Girl's bible study and I thought I would share some of what we are studying. I look forward to every Tuesday night with these girls!

This week we focused on Proverbs 1:7. "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction."

The fear of the Lord is like the foundation of a building; its the first thing that is laid down and it continues to be important to the stability of that building throughout the life of that building. The same is with our relationship with our Lord and savior.

One of the questions was is the "fear of the Lord" different to being frightened of the Lord?

Fearing the Lord means to be reverent, humble awe before his power and majesty. So fearing God is a more positive idea than being 'scared' or 'frightened' of God. I always try to remember that scripture comforts us with the thought that God is rich in mercy and love, and we should take refuge in him!

So that was Tuesday's study in a nutshell.

"He Has You Hidden for a Purpose-You Are His Secret Weapon!"

This is my first post. This is an article a friend sent to me and so I thought it would be a good one to share with everyone. Enjoy!

“My frame was not hidden from You when I was made in the secret place.” Psalm 139:15

At the Verge of Breakthrough

Have you ever felt forgotten by God? Do you feel invisible? Does God seem to be blessing everyone expect you? Do your expectations of God seem to meet with cold indifference from Him?

If your answer is “yes”, then rejoice, because you are at the edge of a miracle! You are on the verge of a breakthrough! The door to your destiny is about to swing open!

I have felt this way- I have felt forgotten by God. I wonder if the promise would ever be fulfilled-if God would ever open the door. I had been teetering on the edge of a breakthrough for so long that I began to doubt. I was tired of waiting, of praying, of hoping in faith! I felt like a butterfly in a cocoon, hidden and forgotten. During that time I wrote this poem:

Someday, I’ll Fly…
I’ve not been myself lately or for some time for that matter.
I’m not sure who “myself” is anymore.
I feel like a caterpillar inside the cocoon.
I’m neither a butterfly nor a caterpillar anymore.
I’m not what I used to be nor am I what I’m going to be.
I cannot go back to what I was,
Or what was familiar to me.
I can’t rush forward and be what I have not yet become.
It’s a miserable place to be.
It’s much like a baby in a womb;
You have to wait it out and stay where you are.
I hope every day will bring the end; I know God is almost done working.
I rejoice because the end it near,
But still the pain increases.
It’s become too easy to not be anything, just a cocoon.
I want to give up, but You won’t let me.
I’m no the caterpillar I used to be
And I’m not the butterfly I know I am becoming.
Becoming a butterfly is scary, painful and exhausting.
I guess I don’t want to remain a nothing,
So I’ll endure the torturous path out of this cocoon.
And I know, someday, I’ll fly!

God loves to make something beautiful out of something ugly. God loves to take the ugly things of our past that satan meant for destruction, and turn them into a powerful weapon He can use for our construction.

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28