Wednesday, April 29, 2009

flying to ny

I know it's been a while since I have posted. I guess life and work have kept me so busy. I have been looking and praying for opportunities for us to make more money- since we are working hard at paying off our debt quickly and God has blessed in ways I would have never thought of. A little here and there- but that is what it takes. Allow me a moment to tell you about a big blessing that was dropped in our laps.
My sister called me a couple weeks ago asking me if I would be interested in helping her shoot a wedding- the wedding of the sister of my sister's husbands sister....if that makes sense. Well what turned into me and her shooting it, came to asking if she would be interested in just having me shoot it...because Laura has a little new baby it would be kind of hard. Well to make a long story short, Jonah and I are going to do it. Why is this significant?
I was going to plan a trip to visit my siblings and their new babies this summer. Things kind of changed when Katie flew back to Bulgaria. Not that I didn't want to visit sweet little Jack- I do more than anything (and my family too!). But I was thinking about spending the extra money on a flight and I knew our dedication right now is to not spend anything extra. I prayed about it and just didn't feel I should spend the extra over the summer- it's $300 to fly to NY. Plus we are planning on visiting this Christmas so that's more to think about.
Well as it turns out shooting this wedding will get us both to NY (paying our way) in an unexpected trip to visit with family, but also develop our skills as photographers. What could be better?
What a blessing it is to have a sister that thought of others. What a blessing it is to serve a God that is generous and mindful of the little things.
I was a little exciting is this?
I'm thrilled to be able to fly to NY this summer and not by myself, with my sweet husband which is another HUGE blessing.
I also had another sale on Etsy, which is always a happy surprise. I recommend Etsy to others, because it's so easy. I just put my stuff out there and let it do it's own thing. And it's extra for us so always a plus.
I tell you what being in God's will is definitely the safest place to be where He guides you and provides for you.

Monday, April 20, 2009


Due to health issues and also wanting to be healthier, I have decided to challenge myself to drink more water everyday- 5 pints to be exact. Wow it's actually pretty tough to drink all this water! Besides having to use the bathroom every 40 minutes it is a lot to get down! But I'm determined to help myself by doing this very basic thing. I have become a lot more health conscious these past couple years. I am not a fan of using medicine to solve the most basic problems that can be corrected by diet or exercise. I think this 'passion' sprung from my own health problems. I went to see several doctors years ago to see if they could help, and instead of helping me nutritionally they offered different medications, from which I suffered odd side effects. I have noticed I react strongly to medicine for some reason, so I tend to be a 'naturalist' and avoid taking anything unless I really really am suffering.

But my desire to learn more about nutrition is still there, and I love learning about what foods are good for me and WHY. It's amazing what God has provided for us right here on earth- in the ground. A great book I found in my searches is Body Foods for Busy People by Jane Clarke- I posted a link to her on my blog(she also has books for food for kids, babies). It's been a fabulous book that covers basic things for nutrition and has recipes for late nights, nutritious snacks and basic remedies and diets for various things such as stress, pms, pregnancy, insomnia, ibs, ect. I go to it and take from it here and there. But my challenge this week is to drink down my water, and stay consistent on my Fluidity machine (I started using it again last week).... so here's to starting new things! (See my progress so far in drinking- halfway with one bottle!)

Sunday, April 19, 2009

a surprise for me

I received a surprise package in the mail from my mom this weekend. 
She had bought me the sugar pearls I couldn't find for my sheep pops! I had looked at so many stores here in GA and finally gave up and didn't make them because I could only find them online for around $12...
But my mom found them at a lovely mennonite store in NY called  Sauders. I love going there when I visit so I can stock up on spices. They offer a variety of goods in bulk for really cheap! The sugar pearls she picked up there were around $2! 
I'm so excited that I finally have some, and I will make the sheep pops sometime...I will have to plan it out since I returned the supplies I had bought to make them. But I think I will definitely make them with a little creativity- or cheaper! Thanks Mom!!!

Thursday, April 16, 2009


My latest design for itsybitsy.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Moving forward, pressing on

I am thankful for so much in my life, my job, my husband, my church, my God, family, friends. I could go on and on. There is so much to be thankful for as I read in a fellow bloggers post, it is wonderful to remember all the things we have in our lives. We should lift up thanks to God for them. It reminds me of when someone does something special and out of their way for me and I don't take the time to thank them, how does that feel on their end? Does God feel that way?
But I have been wrestling with several things in my life.
One of them involves much prayer and direction and I have been praying for it off and on. I feel like it's time to focus on it consistently. My heart is feeling a pull in a different direction. Towards what I am not sure, perhaps I will write more as time and God reveals it to me.
I know that I have been guided to where I am today, and moving forward I only want to go down the road that God has for me. I don't want to become lost in all of my own wants and desires, but I don't want to lose what I am passionate about.
Only our precious Lord can orchestrate our lives so that our desires become His desires- or rather the other way around really.
I have been asking myself a lot of tough questions lately too.
How important is God in my life?
How do I allow Him to work in my heart?
What am I holding onto that prevents me from growing?
Am I growing? Everyday?
How do I influence others everyday?
It's not really about me. That's the bottom line.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

It's hard sometimes

I talked to my long distance sister last night on the phone. She is currently here in the states living with my mom and dad- a small miracle occured in her life and it was neat to see how God took care of her and provided in an unexpected way. But she lives over in Bulgaria (which she will be going back to on Wednesday) so I don't get the opportunity to talk very long with her. It was wonderful to just talk and talk in 'real' time together. It turned into an hour and a half. I didn't realize it was that long until I hung up and saw the minutes blinking in my phone.
I didn't realize we had so much to catch up on. I have a visual of her everyday life now, and a small picture of what life is like with 7 guys in your life (husband + 6 boys). I realized once again how perfectly God brought her and her husband together and is still sewing the fabric of their lives together in such a beautiful way.
Tonight my parents and sisters and family are getting together for dinner and I can picture how it will all go and where everyone will be seated in my parents home in NY. I realize with a wave of sadness I can feel homesick all at once without having felt homesick in so long.
Don't get me wrong I lOVE my husband and our life together here in Ga. I like Ga too, it's beautiful and has so many wonderful things about it. But every once in a while I just really miss my family.
I selfishly think they should move here :) because I know we won't be moving to NY.
But I do miss seeing them, and mostly I miss talking to them! Girl talk was so much fun growing up with 3 other sisters and of course my mother. Poor dad was overtaken by us on so many occasions- after dinner when we would get to talking around the table and he would silently excuse himself from the circle! We really got into so many discussions that were girly and it's just so good for the soul to catch up on the nothing the simple the everyday important things that girls find so fascinating. The questions you know only another woman could relate too and find humor in and experience herself. These are the conversations I miss. I don't have many people I consider myself to be very close to. My husband is my best friend truly and I tell him everything and probably too much at times! But there is something about how woman are wired the relational side of them that reaches out to be filled and when you find that it's empty it's a dissatisfying feeling. It's really so interesting how God made us- woman being relational and men being physical.
There is a bond between sisters and mothers that is different from other relationships it's really quite amazing. I hope one day if we are blessed with girls of our own that I have that close relationship with them, so that they can keep the friendship over the years.
Just my thoughts for the day.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

easter eggs

We had the time yesterday to dye some easter eggs. Kind of a silly tradition considering they have nothing to do with the meaning of Easter (along with the bunny, I mean come on a bunny bringing eggs??). But it was fun nonetheless! I used to do this back at home growing up and I've wanted to do it with Jonah but we have always been busy busy around this time of year. This year we finally had time to relax and enjoy this special time...slowly. 
Jonah is such an artist and it shows in his handiwork with the dyeing of the eggs! The very best one is his- the multi striped one that used seven colors I think....or maybe more. So much fun, maybe some day we will keep this tradition with our children- probably because it involves art!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

whale of a tale

I had time to create a new design for Itsybitsy. I love whale things- almost as much as sheep. Check them out on my ItsyBitsy link.

storms and such

It's been a productive weekend. I have thoroughly enjoyed this past week of spring break. It was so nice to be able to do whatever we felt like, including all the fun things we never feel we have time for during the work week. 
We went on a picnic together during one of the few sunny days we had, and it was a marvelous spring day. I even had a little inchworm find it's way on my leg, I took a shot of it, it was so cute.
I also found a buttercup and put it in Jonah's ear while he was reading....
We also had a huge storm last night and I got to try out the wide angle on our awesome sky....
It's Saturday already, with Easter right around the corner! How can it be April already? Didn't we just ring in the new year? Crazy how time flies. But I'm really loving all the changes this year, they are such good changes full of guidance for the future.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

visiting family

We went to visit Jonah's family overnight and while we were there his Grandma celebrated her 84 birthday. Pretty special because she is so active even in her 80's. My own Grandma only made it to her 81 I believe. She suffered those last years of her life from Alzheimer's. When she did pass it was sad because of the pain she was in and the confusion, but also relief to know she was once again whole and happy walking with Jesus in heaven. I still miss her, but as the years go by the pain of her being gone is filled with the peace that she is in Heaven, and that she is celebrating everyday.
But we had a good time visiting with family and seeing Jonah's niece and nephew again. We took some time to go for a walk with them which was so nice because we had a chance to run and play outside! We don't get to do that where we live because it's so 'urban'. We don't live in the country. I do miss the country!!! I hope someday when we settle into a house we will have a little land so we can go outside and enjoy the great outdoors, gardening, hiking, and having bonfires. Something about being outside that is exhilarating.
Here's some favorite shots from the visit.

Monday, April 6, 2009

the start of spring break

What a great monday, I was able to accomplish more today at home than I've been able to for months. I cleaned, dusted, mopped, vacuumed, laundered, ironed, organized, baked, cooked, washed and scrubbed everywhere! I'm thankful that we do not live in a big place because I'm able to do so much in one day that many people take weeks to do. Of course there is more to be done for the upcoming warm weather but I'm happy with the big chunk I did today. I know it doesn't sound very exciting to start spring break cleaning, but I literally feel more relaxed when things are clean, folded and in order because I don't get to catch up like this while we both work. I realize it only gets harder as you add family members but I am really enjoying just Jonah and I :)
But I had a great Monday cleaning away, and I now have a huge pile of stuff to lug to Goodwill, which makes me excited because I got to organize our closet including my clothes- getting rid of things I've had since college. Oh those days of buying unstylish clothes that never really fit me right I just got them at a good deal at the time. 
I also baked some strawberry muffins for one of Jonah's students that was in a car wreck over the weekend. I also picked up some groceries so I can make her dinner-her whole family was in the car and they all have injuries. Then I baked lasagna for us, mm one of my fav. meals. 
I took a couple shots of the different foods I made today and yesterday's bundt cake as well. 
We also ran a special at the teen coffee shop and I had the kids wear bunny ears to go with our pre-Easter special. The special itself did not bring that many new people over unfortunately. I am finding this shop to be a lot of work and not really being worth the effort in funds. 
Sigh. You can bring a horse to water but you can't make them drink. 
I see this so much in our church, people are so stuck in their rut of life they simply cannot break away and do something slightly different even if it means supporting others. Why are people like that? Why are their butts stuck in the pews instead of getting up and moving?
Okay I'll get off my platform. Here are some pics to enjoy. I like the one of the single cupcake the best. :)

Saturday, April 4, 2009

so expensive

I was going to attempt to make those adorable little lamb pops, and I started to buy the supplies to make them and today I came to a dead end trying to find the little 'sugar pearls' called for to make the furry little wool. Without them I don't think it would be worth the effort. Overall I came to a brick wall finding them without having to order them online. And the just kept getting higher and higher:
lollipop sticks $2
cake mix $1
frosting $2
tiny hearts $3
licorice buttons $4 at least
other candy thingy's $2
white chocolate melts $3.38
styrofoam block to stick em in $3+
and of course the sugar pearls $10 or so....
And here we are trying to save and budget (which I was using our grocery budget to help with this) and I didn't end up getting all the things for this but I do have some so it looks like I will not be making these ridiculous little pops, even if they are sooo cute. Seriously who has the budget for those?
oh well. I am still making my yummy looking pound cake that I found online and the only extra thing I had to buy was cream cheese $1. Not bad. I am borrowing a bundt pan from a friend (the deal is I'm giving her a piece of the cake :)) but I will post the recipe if it turns out as yummy as it looks. I have never made a bundt cake because I don't have a pan. But I'm excited to see how it all turns out!
Yesterday at school I was given a gift from some of the mom's- a bakery loaf of bread. I thought it was sweet of them and didn't even notice the shape of it until a student said look it's a bunny!
How cute! Look at our bunny loaf- we don't know what to do with it though. Should we slice it? It's so cute! Now it's back in it's bag on our counter. Perhaps we will slice into it and toast it tomorrow morning. Or share it with our teens :) 
Kind of morbid but not really! Um happy Easter?