Tuesday, June 30, 2009

God Moment

Push play:

Yesterday I had a really rough day at work. Between my work computer crashing, responsibilities that felt too hard to handle, and people from every direction demanding I do more, I nearly lost it. In fact, I did. At one point I had to close my office door and just cry. Luckily I have a wonderful boss, who, when I emailed him telling him I was too overwhelmed, immediately called me and talked through the things that could be changed to alleviate some of the pressure. I was so grateful.

When I got home last night, I was drained. I spent some time with Dave and then went for a run, and he left for his Monday night Bible study.

I walked into our bedroom and looked at my shelf of books. I wanted to read, but I didn't know what. I just needed an escape. Then I remembered about how I'd been reminded lately that God cares even about the small things in life. He wants to help me make every decision if I'll let Him.

So I said, "Okay God, lead me to what you want me to read."

I stood there for a few moments, then felt myself drawn toward a particular book titled "Running on Empty." I picked it up, sat down, and started reading. At first I wasn't sure if it was what I really needed. But I continued anyway. I started to get wrapped in and enjoy what I was reading.

At a point in maybe the third chapter, the author wrote about a poem, and in the title of the poem were the words "Give Me Jesus." Suddenly my mind flashed to the song by Jeremy Camp, the song that has touched me so much in the past. I hadn't heard it in a long time, but suddenly I needed to listen to it right away. I jumped up, grabbed my iPod, and flipped to the song.

As soon as it started, tears started pouring down my face. God was speaking straight to my soul with that song. I felt all my anxieties and stresses fade away as I cried and listened to the words, "You can have all this world, just give me Jesus." Yes, I needed to remember that. Take all the world away from me, but give me Jesus. Sometimes this world seems like it's too much to handle. But then we are reminded that we don't need to please the world. We need to please Jesus. He is all that matters. We can completely fail the world, and He will still love us and want to be right by our side.

I listened to the song several more times until I felt calm and rested. Then I did some Bible study while I played Christian music in the background, and I could feel my soul being rejuvenated as I refocused on what really matters. By the time Dave came home from Bible study, I was a completely different person. I was calm, happy, and secure.

I share this story because it opened my eyes to how God can work through even the smallest things. I offered to let Him lead me to a book, and little did I know that through that book He would lead me to a song that would lead me back to Him and refresh my soul.

Involve God in the little things. Invite Him into your daily life. You may be surprised at what He can do.

God bless.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Upcoming giveaway

I received an offer to do a free giveaway of a cute door mat on my blog, so keep checking in!! The giveaway will be coming soon. :)

House catchup

I thought I should probably update everyone on our house, too. :)

It is coming along well!! As you can see in the pictures below, it now has windows, and most of the wiring is done inside. It actually now has brick up the first three feet around the exterior and the rest of the windows are installed, but I don't have a picture of that yet.

I ran into our builder the other day and he said we should have our pre-drywall walk-through within the next week. Yay!!

Picture catchup

Here's the rest of the pictures from two weekends ago. After leaving Hilton Head (Kelly and Lael's wedding), Dave and I went to Myrtle Beach to visit Jaclyn and Brandon, who were vacationing with Brandon's family. It was so great to see Jaclyn (and Brandon, of course) since I very rarely get to see her with the 8 or 9 hours traveling distance between us.

We went shopping at the Myrtle Beach outlets, and a crazy storm hit right as we got to the stores. We were fortunate (or so we thought) that the outdoor areas between the stores were all covered. Suddenly, however, water started pouring out of the walls. Apparently the stores were built so that the exit for the roof drainage poured out directly into the covered walkways. What on earth??? Who designs a shopping center that way??? Needless to say, our feet got a bit wet. :)

We spent a bunch of time outdoors at the beach and at the private pool that belonged to the house they were staying in. (I was pretty impressed with their vacation house.) We also went out to eat at an Italian place at Barefoot Landing. Here are a few pics Dave took of me and Jaclyn, then one of him and Brandon.

It was great to see you guys! Love you!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Update on Jane

I thought I should provide an update on Cathleen's daughter, Jane, as many people have asked how she is doing.

Yesterday I heard from my friend Sharon at work, who has been in touch with Cathleen. No one is sure how, but Jane has made a miraculous recovery. She is awake, speaking, eating, and even making jokes. Friends came to play with her at the hospital. The last I heard, yesterday she was supposed to go home!!

It really is a complete miracle. Thank you SO much to everyone who prayed. Like I said, God works miracles. I'm so thankful He chose this situation as one of His many to show His grace, love, and power.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Prayers for a friend

Dave and I absolutely love our real estate agent, Cathleen. She's been such a wonderful help, and she really is a joy to work with.

Three days ago, her husband and daughter, Jane, (I think she's about 10 years old) were in a head-on collision. Jane flew through a window head-first, splitting her head open and landing nearby. Cathleen's husband was able to leave the hospital that night, but things are not going so well for Jane. For about 48 hours, she was unconscious in the hospital with brain swelling. Yesterday I was told that she probably has severe brain damage.

I have been praying a lot for Cathleen, her family, and especially Jane. It's such a horrible, scary, life-changing situation. I was hoping that all you readers could keep them in your prayers, too. I was just told today that Jane opened her eyes last night and was responding well to doctors. There is hope. God can take this situation and turn it around. Please please please pray for her. God listens to prayers.

Thanks and God bless.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Hilton Head wedding

Sorry it's been an entire week since my last post...with being out of town for several days and then having bundles of busyness at work, it's been a bit tough to think about tending to a blog post. :)

However, now that I am back, I definitely have to share about last weekend. Thursday night I rode to Hilton Head, SC to be there for the Friday-night wedding of our friends Kelly and Lael. (Dave went a day earlier than me because he was a groomsman.) It was an adorable wedding...very pretty and small...it was probably the smallest wedding I've ever been to! Only family members and a few close friends outside of the bridal party. Very intimate. :)

Dave and me hanging out at the beach
before the wedding

Such a cute outdoor setup

Kelly, the groom, and Sion, one of the groomsmen
and the officiant (read the story below)

Dave (my husband)

All lined up and waiting for the bride

Emily, the only bridesmaid I knew

Lael coming down the isle

So sweet!

Mr. and Mrs. Kelly Mills!!!

Sion and Dave after the ceremony

The wedding was on a croquet field...so the boys definitely took
advantage of that after the ceremony

Emily (Sion's wife) and me

the band - they were good!

me and Dave

first dance

This picture didn't come out great (was using my old instead of new camera), but I
found it pretty interesting, nonetheless. After dinner, some of the guys went
out to finish their game of croquet. Next thing we knew, about 80% of the
wedding party and guests had also ventured out to the field and were just standing
around. It was so random. The poor band was left to play for me, Emily, and about
five other people who decided to stay at the tables.

The clubhouse where the reception took place.

What was extra neat about this ceremony was that Sion was the officiant. To sum up the history behind this, Dave, Kelly, and Sion became friends when they were young kids, and they've remained best friends to this day. Sion is now a magistrate, so he was able to conduct the ceremony. How neat is that, that one of Kelly's best friends was his wedding officiant?? So special. :)

There were more events to the weekend, but those will come in another post.

Congratulations to Kelly and Lael!!!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Jury Scam

There's apparently an interesting scam going around, where you will receive a call from a person claiming to belong to the court system. The caller will say that there is a warrant out for your arrest because you did not show up for jury duty. When you say that you never received a notice that you were called to jury duty, the person will ask for "verifying information" such as your social security number, birth date, or a credit card number.

The moment you give out the information, it's too late. The caller has stolen your identity.

There is actually an article about this on the FBI website, which I found very interesting. Apparently the threat of the scam is legit. Check out the article here.

In the meantime, don't give out your personal information the "officers of the court" over the phone. I would think I wouldn't fall for this, but if a scammer caught me at a frazzled moment, who knows.

Thanks to Karen for sharing. :)

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

One Kings Lane

I just found out about this new site from a blog I check in with semi-regularly, anh-minh.com.

One King's Lane lists special 72-hour sales of home decor items from a myriad of designers. You get items up to 70% off retail price. A couple of the current designer selections are Dransfield & Ross and Arte Italica. Of course, most of the items are beyond my price range, but it's still fun to look. Who knows when that affordable item might show up on the list. :)

You have to have an invite to get into the site, so let me know if you'd like one.
And thanks to Anh-Minh for sending me an invitation!!

Photo from One Kings Lane website.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The Choice

God always gives His best
to those who leave the choice
with Him.

Excerpt from God's Little Instruction Book.

Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
- Romans 12:2

Wooden cross on the wall

Next step: Roof

Yesterday evening when I stopped by the house, it now had a roof.
(Quick poll: How do you say that word? "Rewf" or "Reuff"?)

Monday, June 8, 2009

A Prayer to Share

I am reading the book "God Crazy" by Michelle Borquez, and I love it. It's really helping me quench the dryness I've been feeling in my spiritual life lately. With every chapter I read I can feel myself being pulled closer and closer to God. I highly recommend it to any woman looking for something to rejuvenate her relationship with Him.

The other night I read a prayer in the book that I absolutely loved, and I instantly wanted to share it on my blog. Sadly, I couldn't get an internet connection at all that night. I was so frustrated!

So a couple days later, here is the prayer...later than I planned, but maybe God had a purpose for the delay. Who knows. :)

Lord, do not allow me to seek perfection; instead, help me to yield myself to brokenness so that I might be perfected in You. When I forget that it's in Your power that I become clean and restored to wholeness, remind me. Lead me back to Your heart when I want to run off and do things my own way. Lord, help me to discover the ways I have hidden my brokenness even from myself. Give me the strength to sit with that realization and to seek Your mercy and guidance. Turn my longings for human approval into longings for Your grace and Your complete love. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Now go back and reread the prayer again. Don't sigh, don't flip to another blog...just reread it one more time. And this time, I want you to consider every word. Don't skim over any...ponder and digest every single one. You'll be amazed how the prayer will speak to you. That short little paragraph speaks volumes about our lives and our need for God. At least it did for me.

If you'd like to read a chapter excerpt from the book, check it out on Michelle's site here.

God bless!

The house is built.

Our house is built. Yes, that's right. In two days, they built our entire house.

Ok, not our entire house, but pretty spankin' close. When Dave and I stopped by Saturday evening, I couldn't believe what I saw.

Yeah, I'm sitting in the dining room window. Pretty sweet, huh.

I was in complete shock when I saw all that they had built. But then, I guess if Extreme Home Makeover can build an entire house in one week, I shouldn't be surprised that Standard Pacific could frame our house in two days. It's still awesome though. :)

Hope everyone had a great weekend!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Slabs and fridges

They finally poured our slab for our house!! Whoo hoo. :)

Dave standing at our kitchen window.

I made Dave wash his hands at our kitchen sink.
He thought it was a pretty dumb idea.
(Can't you tell by the look on his face??)

We also bought our refrigerator the other night from Home Depot. We splurged a little, I must admit. However, we got it on a great sale (around 25% off), and I find it necessary to consider the fact that my parents are still using the same refrigerator they bought when they built their house back around 13 years ago. I think about that, and I'm like, wow, I'm going to have to live with this appliance for a LONG time. Might as well make it something I like. Here was our final choice:

The LG LMX25981ST

Supposedly french door fridges are more efficient and have fewer problems with the ice makers than do side-by-sides. They also allow you to fit in larger items such as platters that may be a tight squeeze in a side-by-side. This one has two drawers for the freezer, so we won't be digging through stacks of items when we're looking for that tub of rocky road ice cream. It also has a sweet ice and water dispenser that allows larger items, even pitchers, to fit under it. It is nice and spacious on the inside with an efficient layout. An it's stainless steel, which we needed to match our other appliances.

I told Dave I'm somewhat grateful that we're getting our other kitchen appliances through the builder. (Basic appliances are included with the price of the house, then we paid extra for a few upgrades.) It took us quite a while to decide on a fridge...I can't imagine if we also had to pick out a microwave, a dishwasher, and a stove. We'd be shopping for months. It'd be exhausting. To all you home improvement people who redo your entire kitchens...kudos to you!!

Hope everyone's having a great day!


I was so eager to use my new camera two nights ago, and yet I couldn't find anything exciting to take pictures of. (I'd already taken a bagillion of my dogs.) So I decided I'd go around and take pictures of my plants. (Much more exhilarating, right?) My favorites are below. I wish I could say that these were deeply inspired and taken according to the urges of my au naturel artistic talent, but they weren't. Still breathtaking, nonetheless. (Haha I'm just kidding. Although Dave really does like the last one.)

Away with Jesus?

An excerpt (slightly modified) from a Greg Laurie devotion (March 6, 2009)...

Away with Jesus?

...After Jesus cast the demons out of a man who lived among the tombs, the demons went into a herd of pigs and ran over a cliff. When the people of the region saw that, instead of rejoicing that their neighbor was saved, "they began to plead with Him to depart from their region" (Mark 5:17).

That really sums up the reaction of all humankind to Jesus Christ. You are either saying, "Jesus, I want to be close to you," or you are saying, "Jesus, go away. I don't want you in my life."

You might protest, "Now wait a second. I admit that I haven't yet made a commitment to Christ. I'm simply saying I haven't decided yet."

But if you don't say yes to Jesus, you are essentially telling Him to go away. Jesus said, "He who is not with Me is against Me" (Luke 11:23)...

...Have you said, "Away with Him?" You say, "What do you mean, away with Him. I have never said, 'Go away Jesus.' "

Maybe you have, indirectly. Maybe you resisted God's work in your heart. Maybe you don't want to give up some things in your life that you know are wrong. Or maybe you are just too busy--you have time for everything but Jesus...

...He offers you His forgiveness. Take it. The choice is yours.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


I just love wavy, tousled look with summer hair. It's so natural-looking and attractive. I also love the way such hair looks when thrown up in a ponytail. Simple yet cute.

Yes, I adore hair like this...and yet God blessed me with stick-straight hair. Not an ounce of curl to it. No flip on the ends. No matter what I do, there it hangs. A curling iron only works on the days when the heat and humidity in the air are just right. If not, the second I step outside all the body and curl is zapped away. So sad.

My hair...AFTER using a curling iron. :(

So...last year, for my wedding, I wanted my hair down and wavy. How I was going to achieve this, I wasn't sure. I decided to opt for a perm to give my hair some body. I was pretty nervous, not sure what was going to happen. The last time I'd had a professional perm in my hair (in elementary school), it had completely fallen out within two weeks. Yes, that's right. Two weeks. My hair probably could have made it into the Guinness Book of World Records.

Surprisingly, however, this time the perm held. And to top it all off, it made my hair very versatile. If I blow-dried it, it came out stick-straight again. If I air-dried it, it looked fairly straight with a slight wave. If I put hair products in it, it remained wavy. It was pretty sweet. It also enabled my wedding hairdresser to give me the curls I wanted on my wedding day (see below). (We'll disregard the fact that my bridesmaids had to re-curl chunks of my hair numerous times in the hours leading up to the ceremony.)

So...a year later, I decided it's about time to get another perm. The top half of my hair has been untouched and the lifelessness of it is getting frustrating. Yesterday I left work early for an appointment with Lauren (my hairdresser...the only person I trust with my hair). I let her work her magic, and 2 1/2 hours later I emerged with wavy hair once again.

I think I look like a grandma nun.

My hair today.
Not super curly, but wavy enough to give me some variety.
And I'm very grateful that I can just blow-dry it and it will come out straight again.
Yay for Lauren, and yay for perms.
(And please excuse my unmatching necklaces. I forgot to take one off this morning, hehe.)