Posts Tagged With: life

hello october


It’s been… a long time since I’ve posted.  These past few summer months have been oh so full and I’ve been very busy living life.

But I’m back!

Now that it’s October and summer has officially come to an end, I’m here to bring you up to date a little bit.  So brace yourselves for a long rambly post. 😉




For me, it was a summer of tan lines and snow cones.  Of dancing and laughter.  Where friends became family, and inside jokes were made.

There were card games, water balloon and paint fights, tumbles across giant soapy slip-n-slides, go kart races, crazy ping pong games, and late nights at the frozen yogurt shop.  And in the midst of it all — learning, growing, and stretching.

Grab a shovel
Grab a pail
We might be gone all day
Acting out these fairy tales
Running jumping in the waves

I rediscovered my love for kayaking and canoeing.  There’s something about being on the water and in control of a boat that makes me very happy.


kayaking down the river


In May, my friend Charity and I co-hosted a CollegePlus gathering. 14 students from around the country came down here for a week of great fellowship and adventures together.  This was my third gathering to be a part of and it was just as amazing.   It was such a blessing to catch up with old friends and to make new ones as well.  Hosting added a different twist to it, but it was a lot of fun to design t-shirts, plan menus and events, introduce people to beignets, and teach them how to peel crawfish.

the deep south gathering

live oak

climbing a live oak


I fell in love with this song. <– The Lord’s Prayer, in Swahili, sung by Peter Hollens.  What’s not to like?  Plug in some nice headphones or hook up to a good speaker and turn the bass up.

We’ve played Ultimate every week — despite the heat.  I think I only questioned our sanity twice. 😉

Between my own projects and one of Sean McCabe’s courses, I’ve been doing a lot of hand-lettering.



Our dance group grew and changed and we launched our own dance website.

In addition to our monthy dances, we took a 6 week dance class which ended up teaching us the basics of Salsa and East Coast Swing.  Learning Salsa was interesting, but I was really excited to finally *get* East Coast Swing. 8)

dancing in the capitol

photo courtesy Jessica M



I studied all through the summer.  Made it to 90 credits and seniordom. 🙂  After that, I hit a couple bumps in the road.  Getting over those — and planning out the last phase of my degree — has kept me very busy and, unfortunately, a bit stressed.  So I’ve been learning a lot about God’s timing vs. my plans and expectations.
Screen Shot 2014-06-12 at 5.38.33 PM

Take a breath, take a step
What comes next
God only knows
But here goes.


I’ve also learned that being part of a close fellowship of believers is one of the hardest, but best things ever. When you see each other multiple times a week, in a variety of different places, around a bunch of different activities, staying at each other’s homes until late at night, praying together — you get to know each other really well.  That means you see each other’s faults, flaws, and sins.  But it also means that you get to grow in Christ together with friends that have become your family.  It can be tough, but it’s oh so worth it.




And I wish all the people I love the most
Could gather in one place,
And know each other and love each other well.
And I wish we could all go camping,
And lay beneath the stars,
And have nothing to do and stories to tell.

We’d sit around the campfire
And we’d make each other laugh,
Remembering when…

Now here it is October.  This fall is filling up quickly, but I’m definitely going to be posting here more often.  I have a feeling there will be much to share in the coming months. “See” you all soon!

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the best things happen while you’re dancing

If you were to peek into our home one evening, there’s a good chance that you’d find my sister and I dancing around our living room.  After turning the lights down, the music up, and making sure the subwoofer is on, we might swing to 16 Tons or waltz to When You Taught Me How To Dance.  But most of the time we end up trying to figure out a new dance to teach at our monthly English Country dances.

When I tell someone that we host English Country dances, I usually get the Spock eyebrow.  My default explanation used to be: “It’s Regency dance.  Like what you see in the Jane Austen movies — except a lot more fun.”  This didn’t always meet with an enthusiastic response — especially among the guys. 😉  Maybe it’s because the words “regency” and “Jane Austen” tend to conjure up images of stiff, formal, and awkward evenings.  But I think I finally figured out how to describe our monthly dances.

Dancing The Virginia Reel

It’s the atmosphere of a square dance — very casual, lots of fun, tons of laughter, and a mix of ages.  We dress like we’re going to a contra dance — jeans, casual skirts, bare feet, and converse sneakers.  Although occasionally we have a “ball” for those who like to dress up.  And we dance (mostly) English Country dances — which are not stiff and formal. (Or if they are supposed to be, we can’t manage to keep them that way.) 😉

Dancing The Duke of Kent.

Dancing The Duke of Kent.

It’s a family event, so there’s a wide range of ages, but most of our dancers are high school & college age students.  There’s been several guys who initially came as skeptics, but we’ve won them over and now they won’t miss a dance.

Dancing The Ship’s Cook

We inherited these monthly dances from some dear friends after they decided to up and move 600 miles away. 😦 We had been attending their dances for a year and a half and could not let these incredible evenings end.  So our family teamed up with some close friends to keep the dances going.  It has taken a lot of learning, research, practice, late nights, and laughter, but it has been worth it.  In many ways, it has become a ministry for our families.  As the group has grown tremendously, we’ve realized that these evenings are filling a niche in the community.  It’s been incredible to see how the Lord has taken our efforts and blessed them beyond our wildest imaginations.

dancing The Progressive Gordon

Dancing The Progressive Gordon

Our next dance is in a week, and we’re super excited because the family who originally began these dances will be in town.  We can’t wait to see them again and dance the night away. :mrgreen:

dancing The Scottish.  That's myself and a friend in the center -- spinning like crazy!

Dancing The Scottish. That’s myself and a friend in the center — spinning like crazy!

Well my heart is about to burst. My head is about to pop. And now that I’m dancing who cares if I ever stop!

Categories: Life, Uncategorized | Tags: , | 2 Comments

2013 – community


2014?  Wow.  What a year it has been.  As I sit here thinking back over the year, I can’t help but see the hand of the Lord orchestrating every adventure, every connection, every accomplishment, every story, and every friendship.

If I had to choose a word for 2013, I would have to pick “community”.  I’ve been wishing and praying to be part of a close-knit community of fellow believers for years.  And this year, the Lord answered that prayer above and beyond my dreams.  I’m now part of two communities and each has blessed my life tremendously.  One consists of several families that we get to see multiple times throughout the week for various activities and functions.  From our weekly Bible study and worship time to co-op, Ultimate Frisbee, and English Country Dancing — many times I get to see these people three times in one week.  And because of this consistency, we’ve all grown into a family.  I now have a bunch of adopted “aunts, uncles, and cousins”.  😉 And it has been great.

2013 Collage

The second community is an online community of fellow College Plus students.  These are some seriously awesome people.  And I was able to spend two amazing weeks with many of them.  Making memories together deepens and cements friendships like nothing else.  Definitely highlights of the year.

Hello St. Louis from College Plus!

Hello St. Louis from College Plus!

we have had the time of our lives / now the page is turned / the stories we will write / we have had the time of our lives /and i will not forget the faces left behind / it’s hard to walk away from the best of days / but if it has to end / i’m glad you have been my friend / in the time of our lives

In all honesty, I  have no idea what all 2014 is going to bring.  I have a few goals, but I’m not holding on to them too tightly.  Who knows what the Lord has planned?  But whatever it is, it’s going to have to be pretty fabulous to top 2013.  Regardless of what He sends my way, I want to live gratefully, fully, and with special attention to the small things in life.  This is a special time of life and I want to take full advantage of it.

and i’ll taste every moment and live it out loud / i know this is the time, this is the time to be / more than a name or a face in the crowd / i know this is the time, this is the time of my life

Happy New Year, my friends! 😀

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Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!  A new school year that is — I think in academic years.  In our home, calendars start in July, not January.  Even though my summer was filled with school, I’m loving this year’s fresh start.  Not to mention it’s a good excuse to buy school supplies. 😉  I am especially happy since I’m starting this semester with 60 credits under my belt.  Halfway there.  Yep, I’m a college junior. :mrgreen:



This new year brings a lot of changes for both me and my family.  In addition to my continual studies, I have a new part-time job and I will be co-teaching a class for some 10-12 year olds every week.  And that’s only the things I know about. There’s no telling what the Lord will bring my way before the year is over.  There are tests to be passed, trips to take, work to be done, challenges to face, projects to tackle, goals to reach, and the unknown to explore.   I can’t wait to see how this year’s calendar will be filled.

Categories: College Plus, Life | Tags: , | 1 Comment

A Year in Pictures – Weeks eleven, twelve, & thirteen

Here’s the next three weeks of the A Year in Pictures challenge.  I’m much further behind posting these than I’d like to be. 😐  Editing, posting, and formatting them in WordPress takes way too much time.  The first eight pictures are from a fall trip to my grandparents farm in Kentucky.  Enjoy!   😀

orange magnificence

Day 71 – orange magnificence

Kentucky pecans

Day 72 – Kentucky pecans


Day 73 – chipmunk

the old smokehouse

Day 74 – the old smokehouse

autumn colors

Day 75 – autumn colors

yellow way of delight

Day 76 – yellow way of delight

frosty leaves

Day 77 – frosty leaves

foggy morning

Day 78 – foggy morning

the best advice

Day 79 – the best advice

study snack

Day 80 – study snack


Day 81 – welcome


Day 82 – yummy

study time survival kit

Day 83 – study time survival kit

first gift

Day 84 – first gift

air plants

Day 85 – air plants

brown paper packeges all tied up with string

Day 86 – brown paper packeges all tied up with string

the Ellie badge

Day 87 – the Ellie badge

Miss Potter

Day 88 – Miss Potter

spice cookies

Day 89 – spice cookies

my great-grandfather's dip

Day 90 – my great-grandfather’s dip

vinison ready to fry

Day 91 – venison ready to fry

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☀ ☼ Things That Make Me Happy ☼ ☀


This post is inspired by my friend Beth. She started a Things that Make Me Happy thread on the online forum where we met. For me, it has become a place to list those little gifts that make me thankful to be alive, the things that make me smile,  and the blessings that the Lord bestows.

index cards
bright colored sharpies
summer lists
friends as close as family
settlers of catan
peasants’ revolt
my Ultimate Frisbee group
who wants to be a winner?
planning jokes
hot tea
tiny dragons with sapphire throats
reachable goals
trips to the library
text messages
ramdom little things that trigger sweet memories
dirt cake
seeing dear friends 4 times in one week
cheesy grins and waves
clouds and breezes on oh so hot summer days
postcards from distant places
milk bubbles
striped paper straws
51 credits
my piano guys t-shirt
Categories: Life, randomness, Uncategorized | Tags: , | 3 Comments

A Year in Pictures – Weeks Eight, Nine, and Ten

The photos for weeks eight, nine, and ten of my picture-taking challenge!  Previous photos can be seen on the page: A Year in Pictures.  Enjoy!

Day 50 - tiny wool fox

Day 50 – tiny wool fox

Day 51 - fabric acorns

Day 51 – fabric acorns

Day 52 - seven sisters rose

Day 52 – seven sisters rose

Day 53 - a lovely lunch

Day 53 – a lovely lunch

Day 54 - serenade

Day 54 – serenade

Day 55

Day 55 – rustic fabric acorns


Day 56 – kale

Day 57

Day 57 – photograph for a school project

Day 58

Day 58 – sleeping kitty

Day 59

Day 59 – homemade granola bars

Day 60

Day 60 – a quick sketch

Day 61

Day 61 – a great CLEP test score! (CLEPs are scored on a *really* different scale)

Day 62

Day 62 – choir music

Day 63 - our backyard compass

Day 63 – our backyard compass

Day 64 - my awesome parents

Day 64 – my awesome parents

Day 65

Day 65 – boring picture, I know. but I took it for documentation purposes, not with photography in mind

Day 66

Day 66 – at a conference

Day 67

Day 67 – bathing beauties

Day 68

Day 68

Day 69

Day 69 – cooking gumbo with my “Grammy”

Day 70

Day 70 – Acacia blossoms

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Life Update and Some Randomness 2.0

You know what?  Life is just grand.  That’s the perfect description of my life as of late.  It’s busy, often crazy, and flat-out exhausting.  But it’s also oh so beautiful.

And it’s full of things worth celebrating.  Like passing Business Law.  And having 45 college credits to your name.  And the plan to have 60 sometime in August.  And close fellowship.  And the graduation of three close friends.  And bubbles.  And doors that unexpectedly swing open.  And board games.  And picture-taking.  And laughter.  And hilarious G+ hangouts with people from 5 different states.  And dancing.  And this song☟ (which I’ve had on repeat for days).

So with that, I leave you with hopes and plans to be back very soon.  Thanks to all my lovely readers for sticking around and taking to time to read my ramblings.

Categories: Life, randomness, Uncategorized | Tags: , | 2 Comments

A Year in Pictures – Weeks Five, Six, & Seven

Here’s the photos for weeks five, six, and seven of my picture-taking challenge!  Previous photos can be seen on the page: A Year in Pictures.  Enjoy!

Day 29

Day 30 - baby brussel sprout

Day 30 – young brussel sprout plant

Day 31 - a darling chicken print out I constructed for my mom

Day 31 – a darling chicken print out I put together for my mom

Day 32 - our neighbor's grandson came over to visit a turtle crossing the yard

Day 32 – our neighbor’s grandson came over to visit a turtle crossing the yard

Day 33 - a lovely two-toned marigold

Day 33 – lovely two-toned marigold

Day 34 - not quite full moon

Day 34

Day 35 - wee folk Tintin & Snowy

Day 35 – wee folk Tintin & Snowy

Day 36 - a weekend filled with Biology study materials, a study in Proverbs, and watching the Emma miniseries with my sister.

Day 36 – a weekend filled with Biology study materials, a study in Proverbs, and watching the Emma miniseries with my sister.

Day 37 - can't wait for the satsumas to ripen!

Day 37 – can’t wait for the satsumas to ripen!

Day 38

Day 38

Day 39 - our new frisbee for playing Ultimate

Day 39 – our new disc for playing Ultimate

Day 40 - ginger blossoms

Day 40 – ginger blossoms

Day 41 - one of our bantams looking for worms in the puddles

Day 41 – one of our bantams looking for worms in the puddles

Day 42 – lake view

Day 43 – the day I met my wonderful friend, Catherine.

Day 45 - a fairytale pumpkin

Day 45 – a fairytale pumpkin

Day 46 – slowly ripening lemons

Day 47 - a stack of cut fabric, ready to be sewn into acorns

Day 47 – a stack of cut fabric, ready to be sewn into acorns

Day 48 - program and ticket from a wonderful performance!

Day 48 – program and ticket from a wonderful performance!

Day 49 - my dad shooting his bow

Day 49 – my dad shooting his bow

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A Year in Pictures – Weeks Three & Four

Here’s the photos for weeks three & four of my picture-taking challenge!  Previous photos can be seen on the page: A Year in Pictures.  Enjoy!

Day 15 – homemade birthday card for a friend

Day 16 – playing peek-a-boo

Day 17

Day 17 – dragonfly in the lemongrass

Day 18

Day 18 – compass rose drawing tools

Day 19

Day 19 – studying for the Biology CLEP

Day 20

Day 20 – feeding pasta to the chickens

Day 21

Day 21 – homemade salsa

Day 22

Day 22 – the kitchen clock

Day 23

Day 23 – looking handsome

Day 24

Day 24 – a selfie!

Day 25

Day 25 – a yummy lunch

Day 26

Day 26 – new converse shoes

Day 27 – female cardinal

Day 28 – cucumber salad at my favorite Japanese restaurant

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