Thursday, September 8, 2011

Courtney's Makings

Hi Friends,
I know I've pretty much abandoned this blog, giving all of my blogging time and energy to The Pink Peony lately.  I wanted to let you know that my friend Courtney from Nashville has given me a stinkin cute owl pendant to feature on  If you love it as much as I do, check back daily for additional entries.  :)  Hope all is well.  Lots of love....d

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Happy Weekend!

Here's a little of what we've been up to lately....

Mission Week was a few weeks ago with our high school youth group - we did local missions projects for a few days, then headed to St. Pete for a youth conference and a day at Busch Gardens.

{Painting at The Blake}

 {Team 1 ready to venture to our next mission project}

{B & kids on the tram to Busch Gardens}

I'm a gluten free girl now, so I've been trying my hand at gluten free cooking - here are a few new recipes I've come up with....the recipe for the Roasted Eggplant Caprese Salad can be found here.

 {Parmesan Shrimp over Pesto Quinoa Noodles}

More recently, it's Blue Angel weekend here on P'cola Beach, so yesterday we joined a few friends on their boat for an afternoon of food, sun & the blue angel show!  We love our blues here in FL...

And after all the fun and sun...Blakely and I are enjoying some r&r today.  He's the best little buddy....

Hope you're having a great weekend!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

How Great is Our God

So much has happened since my last post - I wrote a little about it here, if you'd like to read.  I always vow to be a more consistent blogger, but the only thing that seems to remain consistent is my inconsistency.  Oh well...there's only time for so much.

Through all of my recent adventures and experiences, I've come to realize some really cool things & I thought I'd take a moment on this overcast, Sunday afternoon to share.  Grab your favorite iced drink, or maybe crank the ac and put on your sweats (as I like to do...shhhh, that'll be our little secret - till the next power bill arrives atleast) and read on...

Over the past 2 weeks or so, I've found myself being a listening ear to many friends and acquaintances around me.  Not one word shared has gone unfelt, unheard, uncared or unprayed-for.  (I'll come back to this in a minute.)  My husband shared a video of Louie Giglio from the "How Great is Our God" tour (click the link to watch, I highly recommend it. It puts life into perspective.) in the high school youth group last week and it struck a heart string.  For those who don't have time to watch, Louie shares pictures of our solar system and beyond to give us an idea of how vast God's creation really is and how small we are in the grand picture.  This has been something God's been repeatedly showing me since my last post.

When taking off from our small little airport a few weeks ago, I looked down and saw my "city" below - becoming smaller and smaller with each second that passed, till it was but a blurry spot below the clouds.  "That's my world," I thought.  "All of my problems, my fears, my possessions, my loved ones, my memories - most of them belong right there and (morbid, but true) it could all be wiped away in an instant and the world would go on."  With that thought came, "but somehow in the smallness of my world, God cares."  He cares.  He cares so much that He called me by name and invited me into personal relationship with Him.  The only thing my mind can possibly relate this to is ants in an ant farm - it's as if I had an ant farm on my kitchen counter and I somehow knew each ant personally.  Imagine if I named them and then invited them to get to know me.  Sure they're busy little creatures, running frantically to find their next grain to offer to their queen, they're distracted, but they've been invited and with that invitation comes my love, affection, care, protection and concern.  That sounds ridiculous, I know, but it's the only image I can put to God calling me out of this world and offering me life & love.  I so quickly get caught up in my little world and I (meaning to or not) make it all about me.  It's amazing and awesome that He cares.  In the midst of say, caring for and tending to the universe, He takes time to listen to and care for me (and you if you let Him).

Bringing it back to the burdens I've carried for my friends who are hurting.  I think of the bridge in the song "Hosanna":

Heal my heart and make it clean
Open up my eyes to the things unseen
Show me how to love like You have loved me
Break my heart for what breaks Yours
Everything I am for Your kingdom's cause
As I walk from earth into eternity

That song has become an ernest prayer of mine, and I'm seeing it happen before my very eyes.  He's breaking my heart for the things my friends and family (& the world) around me are experiencing and I believe this is a very small taste of the burden He feels for our pain and our heartache.  He cares.  I don't know who's reading this and/or what you're going through, but as my heart breaks for the people around me these days, know that He cares whether you know Him personally or not.  Contrary to what the media would like you to believe, there's a God who created YOU and He cares for His creation.  

Lots of love and prayers being sent to people around me these days...

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Superwoman Fail

WARNING : This post just may make you look at me differently - it's raw & maybe a little too honest.  If you haven't noticed already, I totally don't have it together.  Read on if you need to see the proof...

After several minutes of rambling and impatient shaking of the head, "You didn't hear a word I just said.  Ma'am you need to make a decision, I have a dog waiting in the tub and don't have time to wait for you.  I'm either shaving him or you need to take him home and comb your high maintenance dog yourself."  That was the tail end of a long & unnecessary conversation I had at 7:45 this morning with a new groomer in town (I'll save his reputation and just hope that his impatience with a potential paying customer was due to the stress of opening a new business).  Needless to say, this conversation seemed to have set the tone (and pace) for my never-ending day.

You know the days that seem as if you're trapped in a snow globe and some kid hyped up on pixie stix and fruit-by-the-foot is violently shaking you so that the dust never has a chance to settle?  For some weird reason, in the midst of these types of days, I feel like superwoman - just hand me my cape and I'll add flying to my list of things to do.  (Does superwoman fly?  She really should, if she doesn't.)  But it's when the sun sets and the dust finally settles that I see helpless me (minus the cape), a wreck because I've burned the candle at both ends and have nothing left to offer at the end of the day.  Just a really tired and haggard-looking me - major superwoman fail (in my opinion).

Tonight after my marathon day week (is today really Wednesday?  where did last monday - this tuesday go?), I found myself sitting on the floor of my office with guitar in hand (a rarity these days) just sobbing words of nothingness.  Who knows what I was singing croaking out through those tears, all I know is that when my fingers hit the fret board and my lips decided to move, my heart couldn't hold it back any longer - I verbally (and I suppose somewhat musically) vomited on Jesus.  I haven't done that since pre-marital days - not in that fashion at least.  Since being married, I've not allowed myself to unravel - I can't afford to fall apart.  If I fall apart, the whole house comes crumbling with me.  Instead, I sometimes talk to God (and myself) in the car on the way from point A to point B - venting in spurts; or sometimes (in a way I'm not so proud to admit) I have a freak-out-on-the-husband sort of moment.  But usually I just find myself sprinting through my daily routine, taking massive breaths in and exhaling serious breaths out (cheeks flared and all).  So not healthy.

Don't get me wrong - married life has been fabulous, but with it has come a whole new world of responsibilities and expectations (most of which I've put upon myself, B's a pretty easy-going {and helpful} guy).  The biggest change, however, has been my relationship with the Lord.  Daily devotions get pushed behind or squeezed in between workouts, meal planning, grocery shopping, project finishing, teaching, cooking, cleaning and who knows what else I manage to fit between waking and sleeping hours.  Those quiet nights with my Bible opened and guitar and pen in hand have become distant memories and tonight reminded me how desperately I need/miss them.  Married or single, divorced or widowed we all need those moments - whether the last one we had was this morning or last year, we need them to carry us from situation to situation, season to season.  Without them we become a powerless and tired superwoman - doing everything in our power to tackle our to-do list, but finding our reflection to be a bit older and less beautiful than when we last saw it.

I suppose I sat down to write this so that I could have a moment of honesty.  A moment of admitting that I can't do life without Him.  And if you take anything away from this, yes, you may recognize that I'm tired and helpless (and a bit crazy) but more importantly, I don't want you to find yourself where I am - exhausted.  Sure, I've had amazing moments - leading worship (and I've meant every word that I've sung), doing ministry alongside my husband, praying and seeking God throughout the past year and a half, but I've failed to do that in every situation.  More honestly, I've failed to let Him have the things I simply cannot control.  I've failed to have those moments of falling apart, only to have Him pick up the pieces.  Friends, it's worth it.  While I'm prying my white-knuckled fingers off the wheel, I'm handing it all to Him, even if it takes everything I've got.  Tonight reminded me that I'm alive - it's okay to cry - and I so desperately need Him.  No matter how ambitious I am, I'm no superwoman!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Crisp & Clean

If you haven't checked out my new decor blog yet, here's a recent entry....follow & share if you like! :)  

With spring in full bloom and summer on our heels, I'm loving bright, bold colors.  And while I'm a total color-lover, a "color" that I absolutely LOVE to see this time of year is white!  It's so clean and crisp, and is the perfect backdrop for all of those bright summer hues that are beginning to pop up.

White can be hard to do right.  It sometimes feels too modern and not so homey, and if you have kids and/or pets, it can be difficult to keep clean.  But whether it's white walls, white furniture or just white accents, it can make this time of year feel a little brighter.  Here are a few of my favorite ways to incorporate white.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


Today I celebrate my 24th birthday - it's hard to believe how fast time flies!  

This day always makes me look back on the years past, and reminds me that I have so much to be thankful for!  

I thank God for the family He blessed me with, the husband who so sweetly loves & cares for me, the friends who support me and the mother that birthed me. ;)  

Thank you to all who have been part of my past 24 years.  I am so thankful for each and every one of you.  I would not be who I am today without you.

Looking forward to the year ahead!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

New Blog!

Hi Friends!

Just wanted to let you know that I finally launched my design/decor blog - it's a work in progress, but check it out, follow me and share it with a friend if you like! :)  

Lots of love!