Monday, January 30, 2012

Bloom where you are planted

In the midst of my busyness, I've been overwhelmed with decisions...trying to figure out where God wants me. 

Should I apply for a full-time teaching job? Should I start tutoring part time and focus on my blog/etsy shop? Should I focus on writing? And there's so much more....

Even though these are all good things, I don't want to do something good....and miss out on something great that God might have for me.
I also want to use what God has given me, but not for my own success but for His glory.

So I go back and forth, trying to look to the future, trying to discern what "great thing" God may have for me. And then God speaks to me through a passage of scripture and a woman at church sharing these words of truth.

"Bloom where you are planted"

I easily get carried away with my own dreams of success or becoming someone great and I forget that I need to be great right where God has placed me. 

1 Thessalonians 4:11-12 
"Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you, so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody."

These verses were very challenging to me and I hope they can be an encouragement to you as well. I don't often think of ambitious as leading a quiet daily life. 

So to those of us who have not (yet) been called to do that which we deem great, remember, "Bloom where you are planted" because although you may wish you were in a garden, sometimes the most beautiful blossoms are found in the ditch.
Make that ditch beautiful!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Student Teaching

As you can see from my blog posts, or lack of blog posts, my life has drastically changed now that I'm an 8th grade English teacher.

I wake up about 3 hours earlier than I would like, pack a lunch, teach 6 of the same class to over 150  kids, get a half hour break for lunch, kill about 2 trees a day making copies, and feel exhausted by the time I'm off. I thought I wanted a nap when I was in college! Now I want one even more!

But, I can honestly say I love it! 

I love the chance to be in these kids' lives. 
I love that my smile may be the only one they see every day.
 I love that they might learn something because of me!
I love that I can show them Christ's love, even if it's in an indirect way.

Pinned Image

Yeah, I've had to give up things like blogging, Pinterest, Facebook, having a clean house, feeling awake, my Etsy shop, and other things I enjoy, but it's for a season. I know I'm where God wants me and that's a good feeling!

So, I just thought I would give a quick update on where I've been! Don't worry, I will still be around sharing life, giving  updates, and encouraging you with what God has been teaching me. I hope you will stick with me through it all!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Silent Sunday

This week I am joining up with Boerman Ramblings and Nat's Knapsack for a Silent Sunday post.

The idea behind this is that Sunday is a day to take a break, and spend time with family and friends. Instead of a lengthy post, a simple verse, saying, or inspirational photo will be shared! Hope you enjoy :)

Pinned Image
Source: Pinterest

Are you strong enough?

Are you strong enough? 
It doesn't take much for me to realize I'm not...

This week has been an exhausting one for me starting with me and my hubby being sick, and my getting behind on student teaching.

Since then:
lesson plans
lack of sleep
and all the other responsibilities of life have stacked up against me and overwhelmed me.

Last night I was driving to a birthday party, and although normally, I can't get the Christian music station to come through in my car, this time I could faintly hear these words coming through from the Matthew West song Strong Enough.

"I know I'm not strong enough to be 
Everything that I'm supposed to be
I give up
I'm not strong enough.
Hands of mercy won't you cover me
Lord I'm asking you to be
Strong enough
Strong enough"

You can listen to the whole song here:

It was great to be reminded that I need to give up  all my stress and overwhelmed feelings and realize that I serve a powerful God, fully capable of carrying me through my challenging times.

I know we all have our days, weeks, months, or maybe even years where we feel like we can't handle it. 
But the beauty in that is, in our weakest moments, God is still strong.

My prayer for you is that in your weakness, you too will find your strength in Christ.

1 Peter 5:7- Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you!

Phillipians 4:13- I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.

Matthew 11:28- Come to me all ye who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Freebie Friday

Wow am I happy it's Friday!
It's been a long but great week. I've enjoyed getting to know my 8th grade students and the other teachers I will be teaching with. 
I'm ready for a nap though :)

So to end the week right, here's some great freebies to keep you busy over the weekend!

Valid through February 2, print off a coupon for a free lip gloss with any purchase at Victoria Secret!

Head over to P&G Brand Sampler and sign up to receive a bunch of great coupons! 
It takes just a few minutes for great savings!
Great Brands. Bright Ideas.PGbrandSAMPLER

Shout is giving a free sample of their great color catcher! 
You can't go wrong with free!
Shout Freebie

There's no reason to keep all the freebies for yourself...
Free sample of men's perfume for hubby!

Hugo Sample

Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Wedding

 i finally have a favorite book!
In fact, this is the first book to make me cry.
Yes, it was that sweet :)

I don't want to spoil the book for those of you who will read it, but as an overview, the book is about a husband and wife (Noah and Allie's daughter from the Notebook) who have fallen out of love over the 29 years of their marriage.

When the husband realizes that his wife is not in love with him anymore, he determines to make her fall in love with him by their 30th anniversary.

In a culture that gives up so easily on marriage, this book was encouraging to read.

"I once made a vow to you on the steps outside the courthouse, and as your husband of thirty years, it's time I finally made another. From this point on, I will become the man I always should have been. I'll become a more romantic husband, and make the most of the years we have left together. And in each precious moment, my hope is that Ill do or say something that lets you know that I could never have cherished another as much as I've always cherished you."
-The Wedding by Nicholas Sparks, copyright 1996

if you have read it, what did you think?
If you haven't, is it on your "to read" list?

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Snicker Doodle Baby

  • 1.5 cup softened butter
    1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1.5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

beat butter until smooth. Add the 1 cup sugar, baking soda, and cream of tartar. Beat until combined and then add egg and vanilla. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Using a wooden spoon, stir in any remaining flour. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.

combine the 2 tablespoons sugar and the cinnamon. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Roll balls in the sugar-cinnamon mixture to coat. Place 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.

Bake in a 375 degree F oven for 10 to 11 minutes or until edges are golden brown. 
Makes about 36 cookies.

And on that note....
I head into my 8th grade classroom tomorrow to officially start student teaching! 
I'm excited to learn, be challenged, and be exhausted, so bear with me along the way.
It's going to be fun!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

To Inspire

Pinned Image
Source: Faith on Pinterest

Just a reminder that the kind of full life we all desire and need is only found in Jesus!
Don't try living it on your own.
It will be empty.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

My birthday date

I couldn't have asked for a better 21'st birthday!
Although all the celebrating is over and I happily made it through the day without anyone actually singing happy birthday to me, I felt so loved by all the birthday wishes everyone gave me. I think birthdays are great as a little reminder of how much people care!
To all of you who cared, thank you. It made my day special:)

Just wait till you hear what my hubby surprised me with...

 ...a super sweet scavenger hunt! 

And the best part lasts for the next 3 weeks!

Yep that's right...21 gifts/little lovey things/encouragements over the next week. One for each day.

He has them hidden all over the house, and every morning he is going to give me a clue to find them.
I love it!
He also gave me a coupon to eat out at my favorite place...yummm
As you can see, I redeemed that coupon already and it was a great date!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

21 years of my life

Today is the big day...I turn 21!
 Unfortunately it was also the day I started my Student teaching training. 7 hours of my day today (so pretty much my whole day) was spent in the same classroom with the same teacher learning about education laws. I'm glad it's over.

On a brighter note, the day can only improve from here! I'm looking forward to a birthday dinner with hubby and maybe getting together later with Nicole for some celebration;)

I was a little sad that now I don't have any birthdays to look forward to anymore....until I was reminded that my car insurance will go down when I turn 25. So I guess that's the next big one!

Anyhow, I'm stealing this creativity from a friend who did this for her birthday. It's probably going to be harder than I thought, but I'm going to try to sum up every year of my life in one word. I have some baby pictures, but to save my pride I will most likely not be posting pictures from the ages 10-13

I'm doing this now before I get any older.

1. Birth

 2. Trouble

 3. Smiles

 4. Adventures

5. Growing 

 6. Sweet 

7. Brothers
8. Different

 9. Adventurous

10. Farmgirl 

 11. Confused

And here's where the pictures temporarily stop;)

12. Hurt
13. Lonely
14. Grace

15. Friendships

16. Work

17. Boyfriend

18. Freedom

19. Engaged

20. Married

And here we are at year 21! I can't wait to see what next year's picture will be:)

Monday, January 9, 2012

Pretty in Pink

I love that Valentines Day is coming up so finally I have an excuse to decorate in pink!

Okay, I guess I don't really need an excuse, but check out the pink chalkboard frames I have been working on just in time to use for a Valentines Day "I love you" or a romantic proposal.
These are all for sale on my Etsy Shop

 As you can see, I'm ready for Valentines Day;)

Saturday, January 7, 2012

DIY newspaper nails

You know those pins on Pinterest that you think are cool, but you never actually try?
Well these newspaper nails are one of those pins that I finally tried with my friend Nicole, and here's how it turned out...
Not as good as the Pinterest version, but it was still pretty cool:)

To start off, I chose a cream color nail polish and did 2 coats.
 While waiting for my nails to dry, we cut out ten little pieces from the newspaper.
Note: It does NOT matter what the words say because you won't be able to read them;)
 Once our nails were dry, we poured rubbing alcohol into a small bowl or glass deep enough to completely submerge our nails.
 After dipping our nails in the alcohol, we placed the newspaper piece over each nail and held it there for 30 seconds.
 Once we peeled away the paper, the ink was left there on our nails!
Some of mine smudged a little because my nail polish was not completely dry, but it was still fun!
 We waited till the ink dried and then painted it with a top coat to hold it on there. 
What do you think?