Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I'm alive, really - I am....

I'm the least consistent blogger alive, I know - but I'm trying! :)

I hope this entry finds you well and anxious for the Thanksgiving holiday! I simply LOVE Thanksgiving. It's my favorite holiday of the year. Maybe it's because I can "officially" listen to all the Christmas music my ears can handle and watch Elf and Home Alone till my eyes can't handle the television's glow. I love waking up every Thanksgiving, Thursday morning and cozying up to the couch with a blanket and cup of coffee in hand as I watch the NYC Macy's Thanksgiving Parade. It's one of my favorite feelings in the world! I love spending all day with my mom, sister in the kitchen, preparing a marvelous meal for the family. I love the brisk air and the energy that Black Friday generates! I love picking out a fragrant Christmas Tree on Friday night with my sister and having the house all decked out in festive decor before the weekend's end. The list goes on! I could talk forever about how much I LOVE Thanksgiving! Needless to say, I'm pretty excited about this week!

So my dad introduced me to Pandora.com and I'm a self-proclaimed addict! You MUST check it out if you haven't already. You enter an artist you like and they create an entire playlist of similar artists. It's great cause it gives me music to listen to all day long!

Well, I better get going, but incase you don't hear from me this week, HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

<3 d

Monday, November 10, 2008

I woke up today with a bit of a scratchy throat (always a BAD sign). It was gone by 8:00am, but the aches and sneezes were quick to follow. I hope this clears up soon - this is certainly not the week to be sick! This week's unforgiving schedule includes leading worship for tomorrow morning's Women's Bible Study, leading tomorrow evening's Christmas Band Practice, Wednesday evening's Youth Alive worship practice, Thursday evening's Sanctuary practice and Friday night's camp-out, Sara's baby shower and Kayla and Nolan's wedding - I need a clear (nasal free) voice!!

As I mentioned in my last blog, I went gym shopping on Friday, and I believe I've come to my final decision. You see, Thursday evening after work, I rushed to the gym I've been going to for years now (when I say years, I really mean it! Most members have id's that are in the 1000's, my id was 20.) and as I waved to the familiar face behind the counter, I said, "20," and began making my way to the locker room. "Uhhh, wait a minute," said the man, "you're not a member here." WHAT?! It thought - not a member, surely he's mistaken. "I see you here all the time Danya, but it looks like your membership was terminated on the 22nd of October and your last day of membership was on the 30th." I knew my parents have been talking about letting go of their beloved gym membership to save a little money, but I didn't think they'd actually do it, they love our gym! The man was kind enough to let me go to one last spin class and told me to call the manager the following day to see if I could set up a new account in my name. I called the manager the next day and she couldn't do anything for me - no discounts, no breaks given the longevity of my family's support of their business, no mercy whatsoever. So all that to say - this weekend I found a gym that's giving me a student discount, offers a spin class, and is 5 minutes away from my house. :) I'm excited to give the new one a whirl.

Aside from a stuffy head and a cancelled gym membership - I painted my toes a pretty red tonight, and for some reason everything seems better. Red just makes me happy! :)

That's enough rambling for tonight....I'll share a verse that's been close to my heart before I go. I'm going to insert my name in here where it's talking to Israel, it makes it so personal.

"Sing, O daughter!
Shout, Danya!
Be glad and rejoice with all your heart, O daughter.
The Lord has taken away your judgements.
He has cast out your enemy.
The King of Israel, the Lord, is in your midst;
You shall see disaster no more.
In that day it shall be said to you:
'Do not fear;
Danya, let not your hands be weak.
The Lord your God in your midst.
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness.
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.'"

Zephaniah 3:14-17

I love that He rejoices over me with gladness and He quiets me with His love. I'm filled with peace when I imagine Him singing over me! What a great God!?

Have a lovely evening!
Much love,

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Along for the ride...

What a weekend!

From gym searching and outlet shopping to garage saling and photo taking - the past few days have been a whirlwind!

I spent the afternoon with my sister today (haven't done that in ages!) and while we shared lots of laughs and memories, by the end of the day I realized things aren't the way I've been pretending they are. Things with our world, with our country, with our economy - teetering on the edge of a cliff just waiting for one small gust of wind to blow the whole thing over. How'd it get this way? How did we get so far from being "the land of the free"? Bound by debt, bound by the fear of being "politically correct," and by dependency on our enemies - we're just moments away from self-destruction. The whole President Obama thing has left me in shock, I don't think I'll realize the magnitude of this election until we really start to see his promised "change." To be totally honest, I am slightly fearful of what the next few years hold. Not only as an American that hates to see the foundation of her country crumble to pieces, but as a Lover of Christ, I am fearful that my freedom to worship my Creator will be altered. This is the thought that has been haunting me all week.

With all of that said, this week I've been doing some "soul searching," if you will. I've been thinking really hard about where I'm currently at in life, where I'm headed with my job and my relationship, where my hopes and dreams fit in, etc. and each time I find myself coming back around in full circle - (with hands lifted in the air) I honestly just don't know. I feel like I should know by now what I want to do with the next decade of my life, but I haven't a clue! The more I think about it, the more anxious I get - the more I wish for anybody else's life but my own. <--- That, my friend, is the marvelous trap of the Enemy! I've been his little pawn, sitting like a stone - paralyzed by the great, unknown future that lies ahead of me, meanwhile making NO headway what-so-ever towards where Christ would have me be. And here's the truth behind it all - God's gently (yet somehow, firmly) saying, "Danya, hands off!" As usual, I shake my head back and forth nervously saying no while tightening my grip - but this time is different. As I tighten my grip, I feel a pit in my stomach - almost as if instinct is telling me that this is my last chance to obey, after this I'm on my own. "On my own?!" I can't do that! "But let go?!" that doesn't sound appealing either! Once I let go, I lose control of everything I've worked so hard to hold and I just know it'll all go spinning out of control, right? Gosh, I have it all so wrong sometimes. That should be my last fear, in fact, letting go should be a resort of hope. Obedience should bring relief - should something go wrong, I can rest in the fact that my "something gone wrong" will always result in His "something so much better." So here I am, hands pried open, heart unsure - letting you know I'm done for a while (wish I could say forever, but nature probably won't allow), I'm giving You control and I'm trusting You know my heart best. I'm finally here, along for the ride!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Beautiful Day

The past few weeks have been a roller coaster - both emotionally and physically. It's been one event after another.

Last weekend, my dear cousin Ryan married his beautiful bride, Bree. I could not have hand picked a better girl for him...God knew what He was doing! :)

Thursday evening we celebrated the big 21 with Austin around a fire, with glow sticks and a bowl of chili in hand...

On Friday, Active and Focused Youth hosted an event called Light The Night - a 70's themed Halloween alternative. It seemed to be a success. I was busy manning the food tables so I didn't get pics of the evening, but it was busy busy - brand new skate ramps, basketball and volleyball tournament, worship by the 722 Band, and an open mic session.

Saturday was our annual Harvest Fest at the Gulf Breeze Rec Center...the event was a hit! I wish I had more photos of this one too - it was an event filed afternoon complete with all the cotton candy and blow up toys a kid could ever wish for, tennis and basketball tournaments, a rock wall, and live music from both CCGB worship teams and from Kelley Keenan and a little band Brenton put together.

After all that - they gave us today (Monday) off! Words cannot describe how badly I needed the rest! It was such a luxury! I slept till 8:30am, had biscuits for breakfast, had a nice (uninterrupted) devo time, took care of bills in bed, went on a jog and then headed to Brenton's on the beach. I was greeted with a brown paper bag with my name written across the top...he made me lunch! It was the sweetest thing....we had a picnic on the beach and watched the sunset. It couldn't have been a more peaceful day. The weather was perfect, the beach was calm and beautiful, and the lunch was delicious! To top it off, he bought one of my favorite fall treats - (I know it sound gross, but trust me on this one) hot apple cider and chocolate doughnuts, and we watched Home Alone (I'm kind of a Fall/Christmas freak).....it was a perfect day!