Monday, January 12, 2015

Thankful365 – Day 12: Baby Steps

As my time in this apartment draws to an end, I find myself feeling more and more reluctant to keep packing. I’m not sure if it’s lack of energy from not sleeping, or lack of motivation from stress, or maybe it’s just too overwhelming to see all of this stuff that needs to be done and not know where to start, which detail to focus on first.

Today I am thankful that I was able to spend a few hours sorting thru and packing my art space (which isn’t finished, but I made progress), taking baby steps ever closer to this newest life adventure. And while I was working on this project, I was reminded how thankful I am that I have the gift of creativity that allows me to use all of this art “stuff”!

Thankful365 – Day 11: Teacher Clothes

Today (well, yesterday, but day 11) I went on a field trip with Fred to buy some “teacher clothes” for my upcoming student teaching experience. She gave me two pairs of dress slacks that she no longer wanted (one brown, one black), and I found two sweaters – one was black, more of a cardigan-type that stays open; the other was a light blue pullover, lightweight and soft. The latter will look nice with several of my skirts.

I also went solo and got two button-down-the-front shirts (one was a pretty blue cotton, the other an orange and tan plaid flannel), and two more pullover sweaters (dark gray, brown). They will all look nice under a vest I’m sure. I didn’t really need more clothes, but they will be helpful. Now all that’s left is my first pair of boots!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Thankful365 – Day 10: Oh Canada

mark and kathy

I would like you to meet Uncle Forrest and Aunt Jen-naay. They are friends of mine who live in Canada. Yesterday was Uncle Forrest’s birthday, so I decided they are my thankful #10. I have been talking to Aunt Jen-naay online for about two and a half years, and I must say, it’s always nice to know someone is there, even if neither of us says anything. We also share photos, have story time, and watch movies together. And of course, their hamster baby is my niece!

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(This is Kristy, Summy, and Pumpkin)

Friday, January 9, 2015

Thankful365 – Day 9: Promises

“Have you ever wanted a certain answer from God so desperately that you consciously or subconsciously tried to ‘rig’ the results? Reading things into the answer that just weren’t there? Grabbing the first thing out of someone’s mouth as your answer? I think we all have.” – Beth Moore, Portraits of Devotion

i heart you

Let me start by saying, I love Beth Moore. I love the way she teaches, the way she writes; it is honestly life-changing watching her videos (she’s a very dynamic speaker!), and participating in her Bible studies! And now I have a copy of something else she wrote, Portraits of Devotion, a 366-day devotional.

The quote above is from today’s reading. The Scripture passage was 1 Samuel 6:1-12, and talks about the Philistines trying to keep the Ark of the Covenant from Israel and God winning out in the end. He not only made their idol (to some pagan god) fall down and worship Him, He literally followed them from town to town with a plague, and then ended up leading the cows they used to pull the Ark (knowing they wouldn’t actually obey of their own accord) right back to Israel.

In that quote, she goes on to say, “It’s easy to do, but it invariably leads to pain because we end up claiming a promise or position God never gave us.” How many times have I tried to “steal the Ark”, to claim something that God hasn’t really given to me? Too many to count! And it never works out in my favor! In the meantime, I’m missing out on the all the amazing promises and blessings that God actually did intend for my life. Because, as the photo illustrates, He loves me.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

The Shack 2007 William P. Young

“It would be like this bird, whose nature it is to fly, choosing only to walk
and remain grounded. He doesn’t stop being a bird,
but it does alter his experience of life significantly.”

This analogy was an explanation of Jesus becoming man, fully human, while also remaining fully God. I love the simple picture it paints of such a complex concept.

This book is one I’ve heard about for several years now, and I finally took time to read it this past week. I have to admit I wasn’t convinced I would like it, even after reading well into it, although I can’t really say why. I suppose all of the stress in my life right now has taken it’s toll on my ability to enjoy things I would normally spend a great deal of time on – like reading, creating, going for walks. But I’m very pleased to say that, by the end of the story, I reached the conclusion that it really is a great story, very well written, with interesting perceptions of how God may interact with us if we were given the opportunity Mack experienced.

I was also pleased to find that the theological issues that were raised were dealt with in very logical, easy-to-understand ways, and didn’t seem to go against anything I’ve learned or come to believe from my own relationship with God. In fact, I found the author’s ideas about just that – our relationship with God – were actually along the lines of what I’ve been figuring out in my own life, which was both comforting and amusing.

Overall, I would say I recommend this book to anyone who has time to read it; it takes a tragic story of loss, anger, confusion, and ultimately forgiveness, and weaves in a relatable, endearing encounter with our triune Creator that will leave you wanting to find something similar for yourself.

Thankful365 – Day 8: Walking in Clouds

06 power of a moment

Today was a very foggy day; it didn’t burn off as I expected it to, if anything it got denser as the afternoon progressed into evening. I love fog. I love how it hides the world, revealing it piece by piece. It makes everything seem so mysterious and creepy! In the best way.

I know this photo isn’t in fog, but it reminds me of the same idea, a life lesson we can all glean from walking in the midst of a cloud – that we need to let go of the past, let it fade away, and not try to shape the future before we get to it, just live in the moment, right here and now, in what we can see, hear, feel, touch….

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Thankful365 – Day 7: Goal Keeping

“A goal without a plan is just a wish.”

0107 be a goal keeper

Here is my documented life project journal for week one, at least as much as I have finished at the moment. Each black hexagon is a day of the first week of this year, just a few words about something I did (not really anything extraordinary). I also included my word for the year (explore) and my intention for January (possibilities – be a goal keeper). The next step will be to record some goals, I just haven’t quite narrowed down what they will be yet.

“Don’t tell me the sky is the limit when there are footprints on the moon.”

There is much going on in my life just now, so it may be a few weeks before I really know for sure what goals I hope to plan for and tackle this year. But that’s ok with me; there are 51 weeks left to work on them. I don’t know what 2015 holds, but I know one thing for sure – it’s going to be great!

Thankful365 – Day 6: Two Steps Forward

Yesterday was day six – I was thankful for having the time and resources to take two small steps forward in the moving process. I have always been a great proponent of “baby steps” when it comes to just about everything; sometimes it seems that I take several baby steps in the right direction and end up taking a few monster-sized steps back. One thing that should never be doubted or forgotten, however, is that when those steps get too difficult to make – that, my friends, is when God carries us.

beach walking

Monday, January 5, 2015

Thankful365 – Day 5: Documented Life Project

Today I started working on the layout for week one of “The Documented Life Project:  The Journal.” (I’ll post the finished page Wednesday). I am thankful I found this online community that has the structure and inspiration I need to work on something gradually over this year without having to invent my own things. It will be a valuable asset when my life turns upside down in a few weeks – I’m going to need art more than usual to help fight back against the displacement!

0105 documented life project

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Thankful365 – Day 4: Winter

Will winter wonders never cease? I must admit, I have a love/hate relationship with this coldest and darkest of the seasons. I love watching the snow fall, the icicles hang from trees and houses, the way everything seems so quiet and peaceful and innocent under a fresh blanket of white.

At the same time, I hate driving in the dangerous, slippery, muddy slush that takes over the roadways, and how much the cold hurts my poor exposed fingers – the “bite” of frost when you scrape it from your car windows. Alas, there is a dark cloud to my silver (or should I say white?) lining of winter wonderlands….

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Saturday, January 3, 2015

Thankful365 – Day 3: Small Comforts


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Today I am thankful for some wonderful Christmas gifts from a very dear friend – fun mittens and super soft house slippers. Even more special is knowing that I have been blessed with such caring friends. Along with gifts, we were able to take some things to storage, a great step closer to moving out by the end of this month!

Friday, January 2, 2015

Thankful365 – Day 2: Bear Family Stone

Today I am thankful for the gift of creativity that God has blessed me with, and more specifically, an understanding of and enjoyment in crochet. I would like you to meet the Stone Family bears (and Beatrix the hedgehog), belated Christmas gifts for some very special friends.

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Thursday, January 1, 2015

Thankful365 – Day 1: Possibilities

“The only limits to the possibilities in your life tomorrow are the ‘buts’ you use today.” – Les Brown

Today I am thankful for the endless possibilities that are stretched out in front of me. Some are apparent, others are still veiled in fog; all should bring a mixture of excitement and apprehension and potential. It is these possibilities that keep us going from one day to the next, fueling curiosity and creativity. Here we go….
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