Saturday, August 29, 2009

Weekend Love...

What a weekend!

The fiance has been out of town for the weekend (He returns tomorrow evening - praise God! I don't know how much longer I can take his absence!), so I decided to take full advantage of this weekend and fill it with all things girly! It was a blast!

From manicures and pedicures, bridal fittings with my maids, dinner with the ladies, and an ultimate chick-flick to lazy beach mornings basking in the sun and shopping till I dropped (or more accurately put - till my bank account was nearly emptied). I have to say it was quite the weekend. I am, however, ready to have my dear Brenton back - absence truly makes the heart grow fonder.

I have yet to mention this through the blog - but to add to the hectic events that have consumed my recent life, I'm leaving Tuesday for a 12 day trip to Israel! I am beyond excited! It truly is the biggest blessing that I get to go on this trip. To give a little background - my church is taking a group of people to Israel to walk all the major places Jesus walked. Brenton was asked a few months back to go on the trip as the group's worship leader. Just as green with envy as I could have possibly been, I began to beg God to somehow provide a way for me to go along. I had 3 days till the $$ deadline and still, no way to afford the trip, so I decided to fast and pray for a day about the matter. The day of fasting came to an end and the deadline had passed and there I was - no way to go to Israel. A few weeks later - our house sold and my family began to throw the idea around of going to Israel as one last big family trip. To my surprise (and great excitement), we were able to jump through some hoops and now, here I am - just 3 days away from stepping foot on Jesus' turf - WITH MY FIANCE! :) I'm seriously still blown away by God's goodness and His graciousness - He never ceases to amaze me.

With all the wedding planning, I haven't had much time to prepare for the trip, however, I feel like God has quietly been pruning my heart and preparing me for the things He has for me there. I've been in such a vulnerable place lately with some things that have been going on around me - it's been so sweet to see God pour His comfort over me and shower me with His blessings as tokens of His love. I don't deserve my God or His salvation, but He so gently continues to care for me and love on me regardless of how unworthy I may be. No matter where you are in life, what you're going through, what you've gained or what you've lost - He is the one thing that matters from here through eternity, and He wants to shower you with His love. So love Him back with all of your heart - He won't disappoint. :)

Much love,


Thursday, August 27, 2009

72 Days & Counting...

Just a short 72 days till I become Mrs. Collyer! I truly can't believe it! I've made quite some headway since I last posted. I've found my dress and went for my alterations fitting this week - the bustle is going to be GORGEOUS! I'm so excited about it! The seamstress took 2 hours to design it, but she was good! I won't say anymore than that, I want the rest of it to be a surprise to all who see! :)

I've finally agreed on a bridesmaid dress as well - this has probably been the most stressful part of my decision making thus far. I have 7 bridesmaids and just about EVERY body type you could imagine, not to mention most of them are girls on a budget - so finding a color that's not too bold, a style that's flattering on all and a price that fits every budget has been so challenging! So I've arrived at an elegant, long, black & cream dress. It changes my theme a little, it's a bit more vintage-glam than it is shabby-chic, but that's okay - I'm learning that flexibility is key to enjoying a short engagement.

Here are a few pics I've been using for inspiration. Enjoy!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Location, Location, Location!!

So we went location scouting yesterday - as it would, it poured all afternoon. It made searching for the perfect outdoor location slightly difficult, but needless to say, the day was productive. I've found my dream location - we'll see if we can make it happen.

I've always wanted a quaint wedding shared with a select group of close family and friends - but through the years as Brenton and I have both served on staff at Calvary and have been heavily involved in several of the ministries there, we've developed such sweet relationships with so many of the wonderful people there. Of course we would LOVE to share this big day with all of those people, we simply cannot afford to. So we're trying to find a way to involve everyone. I'm not so sure how that will look quite yet, but I truly hope to make something work! :)

In the mean time, check out our potential location:

Hope everyone's having a lovely day!

Lots of love,


Monday, August 10, 2009

And we're off!

Planning mode has kicked in and we're in full swing - it's a race against time to pull it all together! I'm so excited! This week's major goals : set the budget, book the location and nail down the photographer. I'm praying the weekend we're shooting for is available...we'll see. I'm so excited about my theme - shabby chic! :) I don't want to give away all my secrets, but I'll share a few photos I came across this morning.

I have to admit - I don't think I'll be getting much sleep over the next few months. I was so excited I could barely close my eyes last night! Party planning begins this afternoon and dress shopping begins this weekend! :) Well, I'm off to watch the boys - hope everyone's doing well! Thanks for all the prayers, love, excitement, encouragement, support and congratulations! Brenton and I are so very excited to share this commitment with all of the beautiful people God's placed around us! We love you all!

Lots of love,


Saturday, August 8, 2009

Let the count down begin!

So the last thing I EVER expected to happen this weekend, happened! The most wonderful man I've ever met PROPOSED to me today! After 4 years of friendship, and almost 3 of dating - we're finally ENGAGED! I couldn't be more thrilled! We're hoping to be married by the end of the year. I'm so looking forward to this next season of life!

I'm in love with the ring - he did such a great job of picking out the most beautiful ring! It's absolutely prefect! Not too big, not too small, delicate and elegant - and oh so sparkly! =) Ahh, what a great feeling it is to know that I've met the one and I have the privilege of spending the rest of my life with such a wonderful man!

The proposal (in a nut shell): He called this afternoon after I was done with an appointment and kept asking if I wanted to go on a bike ride or for a picnic....not really feeling it, I said no and suggested we take a drive to Destin to get away for a few hours. The drive was nice, filled with conversation of dreams and plans we hoped to some day accomplish. After a little exploring, we made our way to PF Changs - a Danya favorite. Enjoyed a fantastic dinner and after a few stops, began to make our way back home. As we were heading home, he suggested we take the beach route back and catch the sunset before making our way back. Who can argue that? So we start looking for a place to park and as we do, I notice he keeps nervously looking back at the sinking sun. He grabs my hand as we're leaving the car and I retreat, asking, "why are your hands wet?" "Must be the humidity," he replied. Thinking nothing more of it, we walk down to the water - totally alone, not a person near. He pulls me in to give me a hug and I notice his heart pounding - I thought it was strange but just assumed he was REALLY excited about seeing the sunset! Haha! He starts a conversation off by saying something about how great of a girlfriend I've been and how he's failed me at times, but he's learning and is looking forward to more days with me and before I know it, he's on one knee - the moment was surreal! I kept thinking, this has to be a joke, he can't be serious - I've only dreamed of this day, I never thought it would REALLY HAPPEN!! He pulls out the most BEAUTIFUL ring and offers it to me - who can't say yes?! :) After lots of hugging, squealing and jumping (and fighting back tears) - we rushed home to share the news with family and friends!

What a sweet night. One I'll never forget. I have to say, I'm the luckiest girl alive tonight. I'm so excited about our future and cannot wait to begin our new life together! Wedding planning will be in full swing and the race is on to pull it together before the end of the year. What a wonderful weekend!

Lots of love,


Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Bema


Happy Thursday! I love Thursdays because they're so close to Friday; the week is more than halfway over and rest is on its way! :)

Last night a man by the name of Michael Sewell came to Calvary to do a presentation called "The Bema." It was a one-man monologue, but so emotionally captivating and spiritually challenging. The Bema is a throne of judgement that we will all encounter after Christ raptures the church. It's a righteous judgement though - a judgement that determines how many treasures we've stored in heaven and not on earth. Michael painted such a beautiful picture of God's grace and the importance of living life with a heavenly mindset. He primarily summed it up with the line, "Everything is different at the Bema." It is so true! And we so often forget that life on earth is a microscopic dot on the timeline of eternity.

On Thursday night's I've been going through the book Crazy Love by Francis Chan (I HIGHLY recommend it!) and it too carries a similar message - life is short and God is a god of grace who is full of an intense love for us, His creation. One quote he shares towards the end of the book, from a woman named Annie Dillard is, "How we live our days is how we live our lives." Every day counts because it's one day closer to our last on earth." I don't know about you, but I want my life to count! If that means sacrificing earthly comforts and an acceptable "status," then so be it. I just don't want to be that girl in heaven regretting all the opportunities I passed up to impact this world because I was more concerned about me and what I "needed." That's what I've been chewing on lately. Hope it was somewhat encouraging and challenging. I've been doing some serious evaluating lately, with the move and having to clean out all my possessions and making some big decisions that will impact the rest of my life from here out - I want to rid my life of me and fill it with so much more of Jesus. It's a constant battle, but one worth fighting!

"Lead me to the cross
Where Your love poured out
Bring me to my knees
Lord I lay me down
Rid me of myself
I belong to You
Lead me
Lead me to the cross"
(Hillsong United)

Have a wonderful Thursday!

Lots of love!


Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Weeks away from paradise...

What a weekend! Today is the last day of our moving frenzy...after today we can start focusing on unpacking and making the rental more home-like. It'll be the best feeling to be settled and to know where everything is - finding things we use on a daily basis has been a challenge.

I'm really looking forward to beach days soon - tourist season is finally coming to an end and cooler weather is not too far away (hopefully). Paradise is just a few steps away from my front door....

Thanks so much for the prayers and help for all those who spent their weekend helping us move! We are so blessed to have such amazing family and friends!

Lots of love!