Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Dating For Life.

"Don't ever stop dating your wife. Don't ever stop flirting with your husband." 

Weekly dates are so important through every stage of marriage. They keep life and the relationship exciting and romantic, no matter what is going on in the rest of it. They also happen to fulfill my love language of quality time (bonus!). In the busyness of life, they must be made priority or they simply will not happen.

So, for those of you looking for new date ideas, I have found that seeking out random holidays to celebrate fulfills them quite nicely!
Like National Chocolate Day for example. On Sunday, we had some fun with this one! I gave him a card of clues first, and he was pretty close with his guess!

There is no need to spend a lot of money- just do something that allows you to enjoy each other's company. Go on a picnic, volunteer, set aside time just to talk about your dreams and desires (leave work, children, and other family obligations for another time)...

The possibilities? Endless.

How do you keep falling in love? Share your ideas!

Friday, October 5, 2012


What can I say? Fall is upon us. When I think of fall, I picture mittens, sweaters, hot drinks in cute mugs, beautiful leaves, scarves…basically, coziness. It is never until fall begins that I realize for me it means the beginning of being chilly all the time and the start of another school year. I cannot recall the amount of times that I have whined to people about moving south!

Speaking of school, the first of October marked the beginning of a new journey for me. I have begun a 15 month, year-round (yes, that means no summer vacation) nursing school. If God continues to lead me in this direction, I will be an LPN at the beginning of 2014! I feel like I have already been in school forever and the thought of beginning again sends a nervous ache through my body. Yet, I have the promise that just as the Lord has every other year of my life- He will get me through it. Some have been harder than others, but His promises to “never leave or forsake” always remain. 

Watching my mom go through the difficulty of nursing school, made me decide I would never do it myself. That lasted long, huh?:) Here I am! I think seeing her on the other side and the reward it is to accomplish such a goal in life has altered my perspective. And I do not have three children to take care of (and like all kids, we were not always the easiest!). In spite of the struggle it will be at times, I am excited. I adore taking care of God’s children- especially those that are sick and hurting and just need someone to love them.

My first quarter consists of online classes, so I can still spend time doing wifey things before giving up more freedom. This is something I will miss for 2013. The question I am asked the most these days is: “How do you like married life?” So, to all of you who are wondering, I LOVE it! I really do. A wife and mom have always been the two things I was absolutely ecstatic to be. I think I was born to be both! As for the first one, I am so thankful that I get the privilege of being married to my husband. It truly is just that.

Honeymooners or not, we have our challenges. But they are all worth it! I love spending every day with my best friend (even if amongst our busyness, it is not as much time as we would like). We have so much fun together and were anticipating this time in our lives for a while! I love taking care of my own home: having space to clean, cook, enjoy life, and entertain more eventually. 

I deeply treasure this place I am at in the story the Lord has written for me. It is a rush of perspective when I stop to realize that I will never be in this exact place again. His love story with me and the one He has written for Joel and I are absolutely enchanting! Our God is the author of romance. For this and many, many other reasons- I love Him like crazy! And I choose to cherish all that He has for me in these moments.

Love to you all,

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Late Night Snack.

I love chocolate. I really do. I crave it. But compared to my husband, my love for chocolate is nothing! When we get home after a long day, we both find ourselves really hungry! I am never in the mood for a full meal at 10pm, because it just feels like too much. We have been looking for new ways to be healthy eaters so we started making some delicious Blueberry-Banana Smoothies, which are really great. The only problem was: Did anyone hear the word “chocolate” in there?;) Nope! And so the search began! After getting some ideas from recipes I saw online, and only including the ingredients we had on hand at the moment, here is what I came up with! We now make it all the time!

5 Reasons why you should try it!
*It is YUMMY!
*And…….YES! It is HEALTHY!
*Super easy to make!
*Doesn’t leave you hungry.
*Fulfills a chocolate/sweet craving!

Banana-Peanut Butter-Chocolate Smoothie
1 frozen banana
1 1/2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
3 Tbsp. peanut butter {Any kind! Natural creamy is what we’ve been using and it does a great job of sweetening it- I hear crunchy is good too!}
5 Tbsp. oats {We love these! You may not personally want this much.}
1 1/4 c. skim/almond/soy milk {The second two make it creamier and more flavorful.}

Now BLEND it up! There you go! Add more or less of ingredients depending on what you like!

Servings: 1 large, 2 small

Note: Do not add ice- it will make it too watery. The frozen fruit functions the same way
We just buy a whole bunch of bananas, cut them into 3 or 4 pieces and throw them all in the freezer, so they are on hand at any moment!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

“Remember the Sabbath Day…”

“…by keeping it holy.” {Exodus 20:8}

I felt a slight nudge in my heart to write on the Day of Rest…. I do not recall ever hearing a message on The Sabbath outside of 7th Heaven but guess what the sermon was about on Sunday? You got it. Just that. So, I shall share a little summary of what Pastor Peter Haas spoke on and then make it a little more personal.

*God first gave this commandment to the Israelite slaves- obviously no concept of rest! He even made it mandatory during “the seasons of harvest and plowing”-talk about a busy time that could impact their family, finances, etc! [Ex 34:21] 

*Israelites still strongly observe this day (they don’t even flip a light switch!) and are often taught “If you break the Sabbath, you are more likely to break the rest of the laws.” It has been proven time and again that the more exhausted we are, the more impaired our judgment is, the higher our temptation, and the more likely we are to give in. [Those in addiction recovery are taught that evenings are “dangerous” for this very reason!] What if you are not operating at full-capacity as the Lord intended you to because you never rest?

*He works on our behalf, even when we are not working. American culture places us in the mindset that “If I don’t, it won’t.” But the Lord is more than capable. Most things in life we have no control over, but He controls all and desires us to rest. He never sleeps and is always working on our behalf. The saying goes: “If he [satan] can’t get you bad, he’ll get you busy.” What more could he want than us to be too tired to discern or follow the will of God?

And now for my story: Towards the end of high school, I vividly remember someone telling me during a prayer time that his brother, who was in school on his way to becoming a doctor, had felt a call to honor this restful day every Sunday by doing no homework. It was a passing statement, but my first thought was, “I have no future plans of becoming a doctor. I may have a lot of homework but will never as much as him. If someone in med school can do this, so can I.” And thus, I began my journey of no-homework Sundays and never taking a job that would require me to work on this special day (for as long as possible- I know that the reality of shift work is not so) for the Lord and me. 

I tell you all of this not as your conscience, but to say that it is one of the most important and worthwhile decisions I have ever made! Sundays used to be my main study days. My busyness the following year after making this commitment escalated astronomically. But it was such an amazing feeling to know that I “couldn’t” do homework that day- no matter what! I had to rest! I have realized personally why the Lord created this 24-hour period! Because He knows that His children need it! And boy, did I ever! It has also helped me to continually surrender up my perfectionist ways and give the Lord the glory for whatever happens. He must get the glory, because with one less day it is way harder to accomplish anything without his ever-present strength!

There is no pressure to join me. Many things were no longer required when Jesus Christ came so I would not call it a sin (though it could lead to such things), but I think God made the law for our own good. It does not have to legalistically be a Sunday (I just like it because I get to go to church and focus my day on the Lord and naturally do not have classes)! This is a personal decision! But I challenge you. If the Lord is nudging on your heart right now: Listen. Give it a try. I promise you will not regret it! I mean, hey! It’s mandatory relaxation! Take it or leave it…:)

Want to hear more? Check out the sermon or read up on it! His Word has great things to say!


Friday, September 7, 2012

An Art to Beauty.

Hello world and welcome to my [thought] life,

I have always enjoyed creative writing and, in doing this, I hope to motivate myself to do more. Writing makes me happy, but without motivation [like an English class] I never participate outside of journaling. 
How I learned this: Last week, I sat on a bench lakeside writing down my thoughts to the Lord. The morning was so beautiful that I was inspired to document every single detail describing my surroundings. Oh, I was reminded how much I love this form of writing! He showed me in this time how easy it is to miss the beauty in the world. So much of what I see is corruption, that in the busyness of life- I fall short of experiencing all of what God has created for my [our] enjoyment. I want to commit to taking the time to not let moments of His splendor pass me by- but rather seek them out, acknowledging that there are surprises awaiting me around every corner. And so here I am…