This One’s Going to be Random…

I really should be washing the piles of dishes accumulating in my sink, but instead I chose to sit down, type out a few words, and drink some iced coffee from a mason jar.

iced coffee

I’m on day 3  of 6 of baby-sitting for a friend and I. AM. TIRED. My little friends are wonderful and great kids, but whoosh am I not used to that pace of life yet! Caring for a 2.5 & 14 month old is busy! Today as I was reading to one of the kiddos, I realized that the ages of G & M are almost identical to the ages of my friends’ kids (if their documentation is correct). Life will change dramatically when they come home and I can’t wait for it!

In two and a half weeks, the husband and I are hitting the road for two weeks to drive up to Northern California to visit wineries, friends, and enjoy time away. Any tips for long car rides? We like reading books to one another. On our last big road trip, we read almost three of the Harry Potter books. We may try to finish the series on the road, but we are open to other ideas.

Last week, I signed up for a blogging class for the month of July with Blogelina. Included in the class is a year of free web-hosting, so this site may be changing a lot in the near future. I’m really excited to see what God will do with this little blog. I’ve been brainstorming ideas for a new name. If you have any ideas, I’d love to throw them in the pot! My husband has been trying to have me sit down to do a day of brainstorming for the blog…maybe that will finally happen this week!

This past Saturday I had a small Thirty-One party to raise some funds for our adoption. Thank you to all who came and purchased some products! It was fun sharing with people our heart for adoption and even in the midst of the trials how God is changing our hearts and revealing to us more of His heart for orphans and families. Orphan care and sustainable living in third world countries has definitely been ruminating in our hearts lately. We’re looking forward to how God will continue to grow that passion and vision in our lives. This week I am finally picking up Orphan Justice: how to care for orphans beyond adoption by Johnny Carr. It should be a good read and I’m ready to learn more about how to love and care for the 98% of orphans who are never adopted or have families to call their own.

We still have A LOT of funds to raise for our adoption, but I’m pretty worn out from fundraising and I’m pretty sure my social media friends are tired of me saying stuff about it online. After the Thirty-One fundraiser, we’re taking a break from fundraising until we get back from vacation. If you’re interested in helping out during that time, there is a link on the upper right-hand corner (says donate now) that you can click and it will send you to our tax-deductible donation account. Other than that, we’d just appreciate your prayers for our girls, the process, and our funding.

This summer I’m re-reading a book called Bread & Wine with some friends and once a month we are going to get together for dinner and make some of the dishes in the book. I’m looking forward to cultivating community with women over the table and in homes. There is something special about sharing a meal and sharing your heart with women who have walked different journeys.

It’s really hot in Tucson now…like REALLY hot. I’m glad that I’ll be getting a break from it for 3 days while I’m on a quick trip to watch my brother play baseball in Iowa.

it's hot

One last random thought…this weekend I bought a new mop. And it’s awesome. That’s all.

Have a great week friends!

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Refresh

Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord,

whose trust is the Lord.

He is like a tree planted by water,

that sends out its roots by the stream,

and does not fear when heat comes,

for its leaves remain green,

and is not anxious in the year of drought,

for it does not cease to bear fruit.” 

(Jeremiah 17:7-8, ESV)

Today I need to sit by the stream of living water and sink my feet deep down into the murky water. I need a time of refreshing. A day to let the busyness of last month wash away and be drawn into the beauty of what this new season holds. 

We need to take time to be refreshed in the Lord. Refreshing brings clarity, creativity, and peace. Let’s pause our busy lives for a few minutes, quiet our hearts, sit at our Father’s feet and hear what He has to say to us. It may be just what you need for today.

refresh stream

Monday Afternoon Coffee Date

Mondays often feel a little off for me. Jason heads back to work and I attempt to get back into the routine of keeping up with the house and paperwork. Today I’m moving even slower than usual because of a stomach bug I’m fighting. So instead of writing the blog I planned, I thought I’d sit down with you over a cup of tea and share a little of what’s on my heart today.

This weekend Jason and I went out on a Saturday morning date to a fun, hipster coffee shop in downtown Tucson. It was just what we needed. We both sat back in comfy chairs and did what we both enjoy doing. Jason read and I wrote. Writing has become therapeutic during this stressful season. I’ve kept a journal to capture my thoughts and prayers since I was 12, but the past few months have been different. I’ve found that writing is helping me stay grounded to the present when my mind wants to fret over the future of our family. I wake up thinking about topics to write on and through that I’ve discovered new things about myself through the art of writing.

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Years ago, I labeled myself non-creative and boring. In high school, I never enjoyed art class and would choose a day of watching or playing football (or any sport) over going to a musical or a concert. So I thought that meant that I wasn’t “art-sty”. I didn’t think an athletic, sports fanatic like me could also be creative. So, I focused on what I knew I could do and stopped doing what I thought was didn’t fit in that category (drawing, writing, music, etc).

Back when I was a tiny elementary student, though, I used to tell people that when I grew up I wanted to be a writer. I would spend my free time reading books and writing my own stories. My mom even bought me a computer program that allowed me to make picture books (I wonder what happened to those stories, Mom). But then around 5th grade a friend told me that writers don’t make any money, so I changed my dream to becoming a nurse, then a teacher…something that was more practical. Looking back now, I should have kept that dream alive…

As I spent my time writing on Saturday morning, I realized that I needed more of this in my life. Not so that people can say that I can write well (which I don’t) or for more subscribers, I want to write so that I can see. Writing helps me see the beauty of what’s around me, even when it first appears mundane. I’m realizing more and more that there truly is beauty in everything. There’s beauty even in this quiet little house with sleeping dogs and a pile of laundry waiting to be folded. There’s grace in this moment.

sunset beauty

I still don’t enjoy going to art galleries or concerts (much to my husband’s misfortune). And that’s okay, I’ve finally found my creative outlet that brings me life. And who knows, maybe the more I embrace my creative self, the more I’ll enjoy those art galleries, honey 🙂

I downloaded a free book a few weeks ago called “On Becoming a Writer: What Every Blogger Needs to Know“. At the end of each chapter, she has you go through a writing exercise. I’m excited to start that this week and who know’s maybe some of that writing will end up here and maybe it will just stay in my journal. We will see.

Creativity is a God-given trait that we all carry with us. As you drink your proverbial afternoon coffee, think about how you can embrace creativity this week. Do you enjoy photography? Take a 30 minute break with your camera and see what images you can capture. Do you enjoy drawing? Keep a pad of paper by your side as you finish your bills. If you’re not sure what sparks your creativity, hop on Pinterest for a few minutes (good luck!) and see what catches your eye. I’m looking forward to embracing the beauty and grace that God has blessed me with and putting that to paper more often.