Sunday, December 27, 2015

A Chance to Die // Book Review

It is a safe thing to trust Him to fulfill the desire which He creates. - Amy Carmichael: Amy Carmichael understood true discipleship and lived it out. At a very young age she felt called to the mission field, followed God's guidance, and eventually went to India, where she would spend fifty-three years without furlough. While there, Amy founded the Dohnavur Fellowship, a refuge for children in moral danger- children who were orphaned or unwanted and sold to the temple, Amy became a mother for these children, and so they called her "Amma."
Even today, Amy's life of obedience and courage stands as a model for all Christians everywhere. We resonate with her desires and dreams, her faults and fears, her dedication and service. For former missionary and author Elisabeth Elliot, Amy became a role model. "She was my first spiritual mother," writes Elliot. "She showed me the shape of godliness. 
- From the Back of the book

     One of my favorite quotes from this book  sums up Amy's whole outlook on her calling for Christ; "I would rather burn out than rust out." It reminded me of a conversation I had with a friend a while back, and he was saying that he wants to get to the end of his life, and be completely, 100%, spent for the Lord.
     This book was  one of those books I've always meant to read, but never actually read, so I ordered it from the library on a whim, and decided to read it in November. (This review has been a long time in the works.) But I am very glad that I did end up reading it, as it was incredibly inspiring and encouraging. I thought I had a pretty good idea of Amy Carmichael's life, (based on a short biography I read about her when I was younger,) but A Chance To Die had so many more details and a lot of her personal writing. She was so selfless, even from a very young age, always putting others needs before her own. She had a vision that she followed all her life, and stuck to it, even when others around her protested, or made things difficult for her. She inspires me personally in the way that she always ran straight to her Savior when in need, or when she was struggling with doubts and fears; Christ was the center of every single thing that she did. 
     I highly recommend A Chance To Die as an encouraging, uplifting biography of a wonderful, sweet woman who strove to glorify Christ in all that she did!

Monday, December 14, 2015

these are a few of my favorite things // 05

+ seeing people I miss
+ emails that make me happy ;)
+ misty days
+ verses that stand out and convict during devotions
+ listening to Christmas music
+ free birthday drinks from Starbucks
+ rainfall on the roof as I drift off to sleep
+  buying several of my favorite movies with gift cards. ;) (North and South,  Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables, and The Young Victoria.
+ Frisians  (They're so beautiful. Someday I think I would like a black or gray gelding.)
+  new books to read, and rereading old favorites
+ possibly getting to see my bestie this tomorrow! (!!!!!)
+ Coffee
+  Christmas Caroling with people from Church
+ making faces at the littles in the row in front of us in church and seeing their faces light up with smiles
+ mama bought me two huge boxes of my favorite tea for my birthday. She's awesome.
+ reading, in comfy pajama's!  after a very long, very overly-social day. :)
+ London Fog's (I've been drinking them a lot lately and they're soo good!)
+ Driving in the rain (It's oddly satisfying sometimes. :)
+ New coffee mugs (An adorable christmasy owl one from my little brother, and a huge, fun one from my oldest brother.)
+ It's almost Christmas. ;)

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

He is faithful // 1 John 1:9

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  (1 John 1:9):
"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
1 John 1:9

This morning I was reading in 1 John, and I can't count the many, many times I've read those words. I've grown up my whole life exposed to the Bible, and reading it for myself. And it's amazing and excites me that I still get overwhelmed when I read these verses. I stop and reread them several times, absolutely savoring the promise. "He is faithful and and righteous to forgive." All we have to do is confess. I cannot understand why, or how, He can forgive and love so beautifully, so unconditionally. But I am so very grateful.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

it's a girl thing // pink wool and polka dots

This weekend I introduced my little sisters to the wonderful world of period drama's for the first time, and of course we watched the entire a&e Pride and Prejudice all at once, because we are girls and it seemed like a good idea. They were quite ecstatic to be able to stay up until the wee hour of 2am for the very first time ever, but in reality, it wasn't a very smart idea, because we were all tired Saturday, and slept in too late, which meant we were rushing to get things done and have everybody dressed and primped and headed out the door by 12:15 sharp for a friends wedding. (Why, oh why does my family only have one curling iron? I think I shall be remedying this problem later this week, because it was rather ridiculous. One cannot properly curl their hair in a hurried manner. It ends up looking like some sort of frizzy disaster that will probably give nightmares to small children.). And we ended up leaving fully 15 minutes later than planned, and then getting lost for another 20 minutes, which meant we arrived at the wedding late. But despite all of our technical difficulties, it was a delightful wedding and they make the cutest couple and are incredibly sweet together. The decorations and flowers were so beautiful. She kept everything simple, yet absolutely gorgeous. And the church they chose was stunning. 

le tenue:
 wool skirt: goodwill {7.99}
Cardigan: Target {18.99}
Polka dot Tee: Khols {17.99)
Black Pumps: Payless {20.00}
Headband: Fred Myer {5.99}
 How was your weeknd? And since it seems I am in the market for one, what curling iron do you recommend? :)

Friday, November 13, 2015

today requires caramel corn // my life lately

Sounds perfect to me.:

     + Lately, I've been trying to focus on living my life and enjoying the little beautiful details,  rather than stressing about recording every little detail. I haven't blogging, taken photographs, or even journaled for weeks. It's been nice to take a break from writing.
      + I just spent a couple weeks in Cali, doing some nannying for my Aunt, and I spent a lot of time playing with her kids, and reading countless stories. I love that reading is their favorite activity. One evening my Aunt and I decided to play mini-golfing. And I realized that I'll never, ever, ever be a golfer. On one hole I think I hit the ball 15+ times, and then finally just decided to stop trying because there were some people waiting, (and probably giggling at my attempts.) We definitely have a lot of fun, and I think it's the perfect activity to just have fun. It is not to be taken seriously in the least bit. Lets just say that my score was much worse than regular golf scores. ;)
      + While I was down there, all the trees at home turned beautiful shades of yellow, red and orange. That was the best part of flying home; swooping in over Portland and catching glimpses of hundreds and hundreds of brilliant-hued treetops as I tried to focus on continuing to breath properly. Flying isn't exactly my cup of tea.
     + I got to spend last night with one of my best friend and my  not-so-little brother, drinking coffee, talking and attending a church function. It was a very wonderful evening. ;)
     + This weekend I am watching five of my siblings while my parents are spending four days at the beach. And I've decided to attempt to make caramel corn this afternoon, as the littles are all currently snuggled up watching a movie, and it's drizzling outside and miserably cold. I am hoping I don't catch the popcorn on fire. haha
     + I decided to start listening to Christmas music earlier this week, and it's making me incandescently happy.

So what's been going on in your life during the past few weeks? :)

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

courage, dear heart

Currently, I am snuggled up in my room watching the second half of Sense and Sensibility, (for probably the 20+ time. ;) in my favoritest pajamas, (complete with atrociously mismatched socks. ;) while my family is all off exploring the library. I made a huge, delicious London Fog, (adding a spoonful of vanilla ice cream was a brilliant idea.) and am working on a thousand things at once while the house is quiet. :) 

Today was good. I felt so happy and light, much like the calm after a storm. Yesterday was so hard; mostly battles with myself. In the afternoon I was able go for a walk, and spend time praying and surrendering my fears and desires to God, and I came home feeling somewhat peaceful. Then, last night I was emailing a friend and had one of my pandora stations playing, and “Jesus, King of Angels by Fernando Ortega played and I felt like my soul took a deep breath. It was almost like a lullaby, a sweet reminder from my Savoir. Jesus, King of Angels, heaven’s light, Hold my hand and keep me through this night. For this fearful, anxious girl who stresses about everything, who deals with infrequent yet terrible nightmares, and who panics frequently, it was a beautiful, acute reminder. Remind me how You made dark spirits flee, And spoke Your power to the raging sea.

~ ~ ~

Peace I leave with you, My peace i give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.” John 14:27

~ ~ ~

Sense and Sensibility just ended and my heart melted, again. I've come here with no expectations, only to profess, now that I am at liberty to do so, that my heart is, and always will be, yours." I've never been able to decide whether I love Edward or Colonel Brandon more... 

~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~
Jesus is always, always, always, always faithful. Even when confusion reigns, and doubts cloud in. When the world is bright and cheerful, or when everything seems wrong, when nothing makes sense, when plans fall through. Throughout it all Jesus remains faithful.

~ ~ ~
The Ice cream in the freezer downstairs has been on my brain all evening. I think I'm finally going to go cave in. And you know what else? There's only one serving left, so I might just pour chocolate sauce right into the carton and eat it out of that. It always feel so satisfying to just eat it out of the carton, doesn't it? or am I the only weirdo that does that?? :)

~ ~ ~ 

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

these are a few of my favorite things // 04

a shot from the hike we did Saturday

+ warm fires crackling in the evenings
+ being able to see the stars
+ phone conversations that leave me very happy :)
+ buying adorable boots
+ tea (haney and sons paris tea is probably my favoritest tea ever, introduced to me by my Grandmother.)
+ watching the world change from summer to fall
+ The Story of My Life by Helen Keller (Anne Sullivan was an inspiring, amazing, self-sacrificing woman, btw!)
+ the book of Psalms
+ journaling my thoughts and prayers (it makes such a difference in my life when I can take the time to sort out my thoughts in writing!)
+ unexpected blessings  from the Lord
+ praying (it blows my mind that I can talk directly to the Star-Breathing Creator of the Universe and Savior of the Entire World, and know without a shadow of a doubt that He hears and answers me every single prayer and every single day. It's pretty awesome!!)
+ getting to spend time with the girls from my church. I have a pretty fabulous church family!!! :)
+ falling asleep listening to the sound of heavy rainfall
+ candles and christmas lights in my bedroom. (the bedrooms in this house have the worst lighting ever, but I put a strand of christmas lights up and it's so pretty and improves the lighting drastically!)
+ "When I am afraid, I will put my trust in you." Psalm56:3
+ canning apple sauce and seeing the jars add up on the shelf.
+lots of strong, strong coffee (honestly, I've been so tired lately. I don't think I could function at all without coffee.) 
+ today is officially the beginning of fall!

Friday, September 18, 2015

it's a girl thing //coal and feminine

* these pictures are awkward, especially because I was talking the whole time trying to explain how to use the camera. But you know what? I've realized that my whole life is just awkward at the moment, so I'm learning to get used to it. :) 

Skirt: Thrifted {6.99}
Shirt: Thrifted {6.99}
Cami: Forever 21 {1.90}
Boots: Fred Myer {59.99}

I recently bought these boots (okay. yesterday.) and am quite excited about them. Not only are they beautiful, functional, and stylish, but they're brown! My parents have been complaining mentioning a lot lately that I wear too much black... and the truth is that I do wear black incorporated into almost every single outfit. It's a classy color, relatively easy and goes with almost everything. basically a win-win-win... except that it was starting to upset my parents. So I am excited to start incorporating more brown tones into my wardrobe to compliment these boots.  This is one of the outfits I envisioned when I bought the boots, and it just makes me feel pretty. Which means that I will probably end up wearing it often. ;)

 I swear this child gets cuter by the moment. She just learned to crawl, so we're going to have to look into getting a gate for the fireplace (right now sticking the ottoman in front of it seems to be doing the trick, although she'll probably learn to get around it eventually.) and a gate for the stairs. It's also way more work when watching her, because of hazardous choking material all over the house. But it's also fun, because it means she's growing normally. Plus she crawls pretty cute. :)


Wednesday, September 16, 2015

The Phantom of the Opera // Book Review

The Phantom of the Opera
Gaston Leroux

A mysterious Phantom haunts the depths of the Paris Opera house where he has fallen passionately in love with the beautiful singer Christine Daae. Under his guidance her singing rises to new heights and she is triumphantly acclaimed. But Christine is also loved by Raoul de Chagny, and by returning his love she makes the fiend she knows as the Angel of Music mad wit jealously. When the Phantom is finally unmasked, will Christine see beyond his hideous disfigurement?

The Phantom of the Opera had been on my TBR list forever, but I was more than a little nervous about it, so I kept ignoring it. But my older brother bought me a copy a couple months ago and informed me that I had to read it immediately because it was his favoritest play ever and was oh-so-good. I am very glad that I took the time to read it. I was nervous mostly because I have a tendency to fall in love with the bad guys in films or books, out of pity. (Think Mr. Preston in Wives and Daughters... I kind of really love him, to the horror of my Aunt. :) And I didn't really want to fall in love with a sociopathic, homicidal genius who is absolutely obsessed with a beautiful girl to the point of kidnapping her and attempting to murder her "fiance." That just didn't sound wonderful to me. Much to my relief and surprise, I didn't fall for Eric in Phantom of the Opera. I felt a tremendous amount of pity, and interest for him, but nothing resembling affection. :) 

 Leroux did a wonderful job with this book! Its written beautifully, and the story was intriguing! Set from the perspective of someone totally unrelated to the plot line, Leroux crafted a brilliant "mystery" set around the French Opera, and a beautiful, unexpectedly talented girl, and a Phantom who haunts the Paris Opera, demanding money and appearing in various forms, kidnapping Christine occasionally and killing those who oppose him. (Gosh, describing him is hard! Basically he's insane!)  I loved Christine. She was sweet, innocent and trusting, yet smart and she was willling to take a stand for right and justice. I didn't like Raoul quite as much as I thought I would. He was pretty spineless, but in all honesty, so much of an improvement from Eric that I was happy with him. 

I recommend adding this to your reading list. It was fascinating, brilliant and sad. :)
My rating: **** {four of five}

Monday, September 14, 2015

watching the sky change

i love when the sun starts to sink in the horizon and bathes the earth in liquid gold for a few minutes at twilight. the whole world glistens like a jewel, and I wish it could last forever instead of just a few moments. I think I could spend hours staring at the constant changing sky, especially at sundown. i've always thought that sunsets are a beautiful love note straight from God. they certainly display and magnify His creativity and beauty!

"That men may know from the rising to the setting of the sun that there is no one besides mee. I am the Lord, and there is no other." Isaiah 45:6


Friday, September 11, 2015

the most important work // thoughts

Inspirational Quotes Printables- FREEBIE:
I don't understand why the world at large has decided that the role of homemaker and mother is somehow inferior or unimportant compared to other careers. Elisabeth Elliot said it beautifully; "This job has been given to me to do. Therefore it is a privilege. Therefore it is an offering I may make to God. Therefore it is to be done gladly, if it is to be done for Him. Here, not somewhere else, I may learn God's way. In this job, not in some other, God looks for faithfulness."  Mothers have the amazing opportunity, and immense responsibility, of pouring their lives into their children, teaching, training, loving and nurturing. It's such a beautiful occupation.

I have my plans for what I'd like to do career-wise. I've always talked about a certain field, and thought about the opportunities I'd have to serve people. But you know what I'd really, really want more than any other career? I just want to be a mama and a homemaker, and spend my life investing in my children and family. (and why am I posting about this right now? I don't know really, except that I've had the future and decisions on my mind a lot lately, and this keeps coming up.)

I'd love to hear you thoughts on the homemaking role. :)

Thursday, September 3, 2015

fall // a list

A hot cup of tea and book in a fireplace. by Eduard Bonnin - photography inside the cafe: A hot cup of tea and book in a fireplace. by Eduard Bonnin - photography inside the cafe

things i am excited about this fall:

+ lots of tea and coffee (it's not like i didn't drink those in the summer, but being able to drink them without dying of overheating would be cool. :)

+ sweaters, scarves, and boots

+ pies

+ stunning leaves and colors

+ falling asleep to the sound of rain

+ fires crackling in the stove in the evenings

+ my girls bible study at church starting again

+ listening to Christmas music (it's my favorite, okay! Yes I do start listening to it full time in October, and yes, I am listening to Michael Buble's christmas album as I type...)

+ Pan (Fairy tales are my favorite, too, and I am pretty excited to go see this one with my favorite sister in law!)

+ road tripping to the beach with my bestie

+ getting to know new friends better

+ family camp with my church starting tomorrow.

+ reading many books and lots of the Bible

what are some things you're excited about now that it's September?

Thursday, August 27, 2015

these are a few of my favorite things // 3

this child is absolutely one of my favorites!! ;)

1. feeling complete peace
2. bright red heels (somehow wearing red shoes makes everything 50% more exciting)
3. adorable little brothers
4. tart lemonade
5. amazing devo's in the morning
6. blackberry pie
7. baby goats that eat pears out of your hands and then lick the juice off your fingers
8. getting to spend time with both my big brothers at once
9. it's almost September, which means sweaters, hot drinks and beautiful leaves!
10. Be Still My Soul (In You I Rest)
11. cleaning all the junk off my desk so that I can actually use it again.
12. psalms 34
13. conquering fears!
14. watermelon and cantaloupe from my Grandpa's garden
15. quiet
16. fresh canned peaches lined up on the shelf.
17. long conversations
18. books that make you really think
19. christmas is in exactly 121 days, but we can "officially" start listening to Christmas music in only 66 days.
20. feeling comfortable around people
21. smiles and giggles from Lydia
22. vanilla ice cream
23. lighting candles (totally improves my mood!)
24.  Earl Grey Tea
25. burts bees lip balm
26. audrey hepburn (she's just so adorable!)
27. psalms 94:19
28. phantom of the opera (I just read the book, and it was wonderful!)
29. reading late into the night
30. looking forward to seeing good friends this weekend! (and climbing Mt. St. Helens on Tuesday!!)

source This drawing has been really striking my fancy lately. I think it's all kinds of adorable!!

What have been some of your favorite things lately.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

be still my soul

God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself because it is not there, there is no such thing. ~ CS Lewis  Look to God.  He provides our everything.

I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.
My soul will make its boast in the Lord; The humble will hear it and rejoice.
O Magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His Name together.
I sought the Lord and He answered me, and delivered me from all my fears.
They looked to Him and were radiant, and their faces will never be ashamed.
This poor man cried , and the Lord heard him and saved him out of all his troubles.
The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him, and rescues them.
O taste and see that the Lord is good; how blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him!
O fear the Lord, you His saints; For those who fear Him there is no want.
The young lions do lack and suffer hunger; but they who seek the Lord shall not be in want of any good thing.,
Come, you children, listen to me; I will; teach you the fear of the Lord.
Who is the man who desires life and loves length of days that he may see good?
Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking deceit.
Depart from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.
The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous and His ears are open to their cry,
The face of the Lord is against evildoers, to cut off the memory of them from the earth.
The righteous cry, and the Lord hears and delivers them out of all their troubles. 
The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.
Many are the affliction of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all.
He keeps all his bones, not one of them is broken.
Evil shall slay the wicked, and those who hate the righteous will be condemned.
The Lord redeems the soul of His servants, and none of those who take refuge in Him will be condemned.
Psalms 34

Lately I've been dealing with some overwhelming fears, plagued by doubts and worry. Fears are something I've always dealt with, but this is so much more than usual.  I was letting them take over my thoughts, and affect my sleeping. Obviously focusing on the fears and doubts wasn't helping; it was making it much, much worse. So finally, I started doing what I should have been focusing on from the very beginning. I began surrendering my fears to God. Praying even more  than before for wisdom, direction and especially peace. I started clinging to verses from Philippians 4, reading them over and over throughout the day. "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God,with surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." and verses from Psalms, "When my anxious thoughts multiply within me your consolations delight my soul." 

God keeps bring out the verses I need to read, in family devos at night, or a cross-reference from Pastor's sermon. Last week at church it was James 1:5-7 "But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. For the man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways." 

And this morning I randomly opened the Psalms, and began reading Psalms 34, and it  felt like it was exactly what God wanted me to read. "I sought the Lord and He answered me, and delivered me from all my fears." He hears and he answers our prayers! And He can and will deliver me from all my fears! 

I've been listening to this song over and over too, and it's been really helping. Sometimes it is just really hard to remember to be still and wait on the Lord. "Leave to thy God to order and provide. In every change he faithful will remain. Be still my soul, thy Best, thy heavenly friend through thorny ways leads to a joyful end. 

So, this is a very "rambly" post, but I just was so excited this morning, because I felt complete peace. God is so faithful, and so loving! I am excited to see where He leads me, and in the meantime I will continue to cling to His promises! :)

Friday, July 31, 2015

forgotten frames

Finding photographs you'd forgotten about on a SD card is super cool. It's like getting an unexpected gift... from yourself! These are just some forgotten frames from my last visit to Goldendale. There was a large fire that closed the highway I usually take home, so we drove out the back way, and were able to snap a couple silhouettes of the mountain and sunset.
 the blood moons from Goldendale are always stunning. It was extremely exciting to be able to see one one the one night we were there!! (Please forgive the quality... This was snapped from a moving vehicle, and then cropped so that it could be seen. ;)

also. I just killed my bamboo plant... do you know how easy a bamboo plant is to care for?? The only care a bamboo plant requires is being refilled with water about once every three months! I think my skills in the gardening/plant growing area are non-existent... and it's kind of embarrassing! (but slightly humorous at the same time.)

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Ten Places Abroad I Would Love To Visit // A List

The United Kingdom is known as the top destination for students to study abroad. Almost 12% of students study in The UK. This photo is of London, England, perhaps one of the most popular choices for students who wish to learn in English and learn about the historic city. (Caption by Lizzy Wagner)

1. London, England, and all the surrounding countryside. Seriously, with all the British Lit that I have read, and BBC movies I’ve watched, England has become a fascinating country, and I would love to take tours all over the lovely island. I would visit castles and gardens, and famous reformation landmarks, churches and cathedrals, coffee shops- lots of coffee shops, and tons of tiny cozy restaurants.  I would go hiking and backpacking, and probably accidentally drive on the wrong side of the road. I would listen to the people around me talk and become more than slightly desirous of their accents, and probably accidently mimic them. I would peep at the Queen’s castle, and take pictures of Big Ben, and really I'd take tons and tons of pictures. 

Manarola, Italy - It's in the province of La Spezia, Liguria, northern Italy. A unique place called 'Cinque Terre ' (which means Five Towns literally and this is one of the town, they are right next to each other). If you go to Tuscany, you can make a day trip there.

2. Italy Can I be 100% honest about this one? I think I would go to Italy for no other reason than to eat… Although, I had a lengthy conversation about traveling with my oldest brother a few years ago, and he insisted that I cannot travel to another country (Much less Italy!!) just to eat, and if I visit Italy I must do sightseeing and visit all the lovely touristy things as well. So I would duly visit the famous places, and I would love to travel the countryside as well, and maybe a vineyard or two. But I would be doing a lot of eating whilst “sightseeing.” :) Also, Gelato… I would eat lots of gelato ice cream.

3. India I have wanted to visit India for several years now. Ever since I first read a book or perhaps it was a documentary, about girls in the sex trade. I would love to go on a short-term mission to somehow either work with some of those girls, or orphans. I also have always wanted to touch and ride an Elephant, so India seems like they might have elephants, (maybe they don’t and I totally just embarrassed myself! :) But that would be pretty cool too. (ACTUALLY IT WOULD MORE THAN COOL IT WOULD BE TOTALLY AWESOME!! :)

The Old City, the Wailing Wall, the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, the Dome of the Rock...I  must go to Jerusalem.

4. Israel It would be fascinating and special to visit the Holy Land, and to see the places that Jesus lived, and walked, and taught. I've read about, and seen pictures of the great diversity of people and civilizations that are packed into the cities, and  I would love the opportunity to people watch and observe. People watching is one of my favorite hobbies. ;) I would want to swim in the dead sea, and ride a camel and try Israeli food. I would want to visit the wailing wall, (I just typed whaling wall…) and visit many, many other historical and biblical sights.

5. Paris, France Ever since watching Funny Face, with Audrey Hepburn and Fred Astaire, I have wanted to visit Paris. I would climb the Eiffel tower, (not ride the elevator, I think. It would be much more impressive to climb.), and walk along the banks of the Seine. I would listen to the people speaking French all around me and wish that I had learned to speak it. I would eat snails, once, because why not, I'd be in Paris... I have to eat them, and then I would eat a lot of other delightful dishes. 

The Hexagons - Giant's Causeway, 40,000 interlocking basalt columns, the result of an ancient volcanic eruption. Located in Northern Ireland, it was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1986.

6. Ireland oh, the Irish landscape. I want to walk along the cliff lines on the ocean and revel in the glorious views. I would hop from bed and breakfast to bed and breakfast and hike until I dropped. (not quite literally.) I would take pictures of sheep and look at the sea again. I think the sea is one thing I will never get tired of looking at.

7. Germany I don’t know off the top of my head what places I would visit, or what I would do, but I know there is so much history wrapped up in the cities and it would be amazing! It would be heavenly to listen to the Vienna Philharmonic. 

8. Scotland - I feel like this one should be higher on the list. I would want to go everywhere and see everything and listen to accents and witness the highland games and just everything. :)

9.  Hawaii Technically not abroad, but it is over-a-sea. ;) I think diving in a warm ocean would be amazing and more than weird. But to see the colors and fishes and everything under the water would be stunning.

devil's punchbowl falls in arthur's pass national park, new zealand

10. New Zealand um, I would totally travel here because of the accents, the accents and the accents. Also because of their gorgeous accents. Just sayin'. There's also the stunning landscapes and hikes. But mostly accents. ;)

That's it! I just want to travel everywhere and see everything!! :) What are some spots you've always dreamed of seeing? 

Thursday, July 23, 2015

it's a girl thing // polka dots and womanhood

I decided today was a favorite dress day. This one is twirly, polka-dotted and fun. The perfect pick-me-up for days when I feel less than great.  I thrifted it a couple of weeks before valentine's day this year, for the swing dance I attended with my big brother. It is absolutely perfect to dance in, paired with my favorite pair of black pumps. :) It's also perfect for church, weddings, sunny days and everything in between. It's basically my equivalent of a LBD. :)

"We are called to be women. The fact that I am a woman does not make me a different kind of Christian, but the fact that I am a Christian does make me a different kind of woman. For I have accepted God's idea of me, and my whole life is an offering back to Him of all that I am and what He wants me to be."

..."so the woman who accepts the limitations of womanhood finds in those very limitations her gift, her special calling--wings, in fact, which bear her up into perfect freedom, into the will of God."

Worship is not an experience. Worship is an act, and this takes discipline. We are to "worship in spirit and truth." Never mind about the feelings, We are to worship in spite of them!"

I've been reading Let Me Be A Woman by Elisabeth Elliot all week, and my-oh-my... it's fabulous! I had tried to pick it up several times before, but hadn't been able to really get into it. But it's totally a God thing, because this book is exactly what I need to be learning/reading and it's answering so many questions I'm dealing with. I've always been a very strong personality. I've always believed that women are perfectly capable, that it's fine for them to attend colleges, and have careers, that women could be called to do anything. And I still believe that, (as long as it is the will of God, but that is true of men as well!). But Mrs. Elliot has helped me realize more fully that the woman's role in society, marriage, and life in general is absolutely beautiful, special, and unique and it is something to be fully embraced. It's not that we aren't capable as women, it's that we were created for something entirely different.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

blueberry picking and coffee

This morning I was able to join a group of girls, from my church and bible study, for coffee/breakfast and blueberry picking. It was wonderful to fellowship and great fun to pick berries together, something I'd never done before. I think some blueberry muffins are in order, and perhaps a cake or pancakes too. ;) They're incrudibally delicious. (Something about picking them yourself makes them way better than those bought from a grocery store. ;)

The rest of the day has been spent running various errands, doing laundry, cleaning my room, babysitting Lydia, and packing for a trip I'm leaving on tomorrow. I just know I'm gonna end up packing way too much stuff. But I think I'm okay with that, because 'tis better to end up with to much rather than not enough, right? :)

how has your week been so far?

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

these are a few of my favorite things // 2

+ sleeping in ('nuff said? :D )
+ journaling
+ writing prompts
+ early morning walks
+ friends that make time to just chat
+ lists ;)
+ dancing until my feet hurt and I can hardly breath
+ gorgeous soundtracks
+ spending time with my brother and sister-in-law
+ hiking trips with friends
+ this song by my favorite instrumental group
+ vitamin d drops. (yes, they're my solution to not spending much time outside. lol)
+ black + white mochas
+  nice barista's. (seriously, there is such a difference between sweet baristas and people who hate their job and thus hate you...) 
+ beautiful sunsets
+ watching Larkrise to Candleford again (made it past the first season this time. :)
+ warm, but not to warm, days
+ anticipating things
+ pepsi. (just sayin')
+  when brothers buy you caramel lattes!! :)
+ wearing my favorite dress
+ when it finally cools down at night
+ being busy
+ sunsets
+ planning a zoo trip with my bestie to see the elephants (!!!!)

Sunday, June 28, 2015


This evening I ran out to take some photos of the sunset, and ended up attempting to take some pictures of my puppy, Jess. One of my brothers noticed that I was having a little trouble getting her to be still, (it's hard when her attention span lasts all of .32 of a second! jk #butalsonot!) So he started waving a stick above my head and gosh,that dog paid strict attention! But instead of epic dog pictures, like this one, or this one, I got classic Jess, and it turned into a hilarious shoot. (part of the hilarity was probably from the fact that I have had way too much coffee today, though. :)

Jess is a complete sweetie, though, despite all her faults. (The biggest of which is her car chasing, and barking frantically up and down the fence every.single.time a car drives by.) She is great with kids, and loves to just sit and be with me. She also came into my life two weeks before the hardest weekend of my life. (moving to a place I did not want to live, and putting my horse down.) and that makes her even more special. Plus, we're perfect for each other. We make quite the klutzy, ditzy pair. (seriously, we both fall up and down the stairs regularly, trip over things, run into walls, fences, people... etc. ;) But I love my ridiculous, silly girl. :)

she does close her mouth occasionally. lol

Friday, June 26, 2015

5 Books I Will Never Recommend // a list

The Book Thief - Marcus Zusak
I'll be honest. I did recommend this one a couple of times. But after trying to explain the plot and characters to people and seeing their horrified expressions, I won't be recommending this book! (It's not a bad book, in fact I thought it was brilliant and fascinating. But it's narrated by a character that is, quite literally, Death, and it sounds morbid and terrible when you try to explain that Death travels around the world carefully collecting souls... See, you probably think I'm super weird now. ;)

The Master of Ballantrae - Robert Louis Stevenson
I love most of Stevenson's books, but this one is one I read once and will never read or think about again. (although it's sitting on my bookshelf and I won't get rid of it because I'm a book hoarder.) It was just strange, and the ending was so ridiculous I laughed, although I think it was supposed to be a depressing ending.

Jacob Have I Loved - Katherine Paterson-
I've actually read this one twice, but it's so weird and depressing, (not to mention that she basically falls in love with a 70-year-old man when she's 14. STRANGE!) I don't know what I think about the story. It's sad.

Hard Times - Charles Dickens
UGH! I usually love Dickens, but this book was just positively awful! I finished it simply because I'm working though all of Dickens works so that someday I shall have the satisfaction of knowing I read them all, but unless you want a similar accomplishment, DON'T BOTHER WITH HARD TIMES!!

Call of the Wild - Jack London
I really intensely disliked this one. I think the perspective (from a Dog's point of view) was interesting, but so far fetched and absurd that I didn't enjoy it, and I actually don't let my siblings read it. (I do most of the previewing for my family.)

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

margaret from happyinheels // guest post

Hi! My name is Margaret and my fashion blog is happyinheels

Because I am passionate about fashion, sometimes I find myself looking back and wincing at a bad outfit I wore long ago. But I try to correct myself because God does not want us to live in sorrow (or embarrassment!) over mistakes we have made, whether big or small.
     My little message to you is look forward, not backward, because the future is bright! God wants us to acknowledge our mistakes and then move forward because our life is short and precious!

Be sure to check out my blog and sign up for email notifications! 

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Dog Mountain // Hiking

I was able to go hiking over the weekend with an awesome bunch of friends. We tackled Dog Mountain, and it was just as lovely and stunning from the top as the first time I hiked it. (My sincerest apologies to everyone who had to wait for us at the top for awhile, though!!) I was missing my bestie the whole time, because last time we hiked it together, and I like hiking with her. :) (She was at her older brother's wedding, though, so she had a valid excuse!)

i love this river so much!

The flowers on the hillsides were gorgeous, although a little past their prime. The first time I hiked it, the girls and I dubbed the flower-covered hills the "As You Wish Hills." Personally, I can totally see myself toppling down them quite by accident. ;) I texted my sister-in-law a photo of the view from the top, because she was working all day. My view was totally better! :)
 I just thought these ^ flowers were darling. :) They remind me of pom-poms...

We were even able to stop off at Multnomah Falls on the way home for a wee bit. It was lovely as always, and incredibly busy! We snapped a few selfies, and decided not to hike up to the bridge because of how many people were already on it. :)  

Hiking is so satisfying. I love pushing myself, accomplishing something, and then getting to the top and being able to soak in a perfect view. It totally makes up for the aching calf muscles, dust and sweat. :)

how was your weekend?