Wednesday, July 31, 2013

What I'm Loving Wednesday

Three weeks.


I only have three weeks until school starts.  Can someone please tell me where summer went?

I have spent the past two days at school in professional development.  It has been a long two days.  But a good two days.  The training has challenged me as a teacher.  I am excited to work on a few things and hopefully grow as a teacher.  My students deserve my very best!  I'm slowly getting to know my new coworkers.  They like to laugh and I LOVE that!  They are going to be a lot of fun to work with.  I managed to get a few things done in my classroom, but I still have a long way to go.  I'm starting to feel a little overwhelmed about getting it finished in time.  I definitely need to spend two or three full days in there working.  I LOVE my job!  I am blessed to be able to do what I am called to do and what I enjoy doing.

I'm double blessed because I not only have one job I love, I have two that I love.  I'm also an independent consultant for Thirty-One.  We have a new catalog coming out soon and I'm LOVING all the new products and prints.  This new purse is my favorite.  Pretty sure I will be adding this to my personal collection very soon.

Do you remember when I shared about finding our dream house?  Well last week we made an offer and have been doing the dance of negotiations ever since.  Today our agent called to let us know they accepted our offer.  We could not be more excited.  We LOVE this house!  It is almost 100 years old and is full of charm.  We won't be closing or moving in until the end of October.  It's the joys of being a teacher and in between paychecks at the moment.  Summer breaks aren't all good.

A couple of weeks ago we began a new series at church called Big Screen.  It's all about the truth that are in today's hit movies.  So far we have watched Courageous and The Impossible.  This week is Walk the Line.  Of course we only see snippets of the movies.  No time to watch all of them.  They serve popcorn and drinks.  It church like most people have never seen it.  The messages have been great.  I'm LOVING this series.

And what's a WILW without a pic of my little family.  My favorite LOVE.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

I Have a Golden Calf

Thou shall have no other gods before me.  Exodus 20:3

Does anyone else envision a golden calf when they read that or is just me?

It is so easy for me to just read right over that verse.  I'm not on my knees bowing to a human made god.

At least not physically.

I was in a Lifeway store last weekend and was drawn to this book.

It wasn't what I had gone in looking for.  It wasn't dealing with an issue that I felt I was struggling with.

Yet, I was drawn to it.

I've only read two chapters.  I'm taking my time with it.  Partly because I want to get everything from it that God has for me.  Partly because I'm afraid of what God has for me. 

It is about the gods that are at war in our lives.  The idols that fight so diligently for our heart.

Tonight as I was reading through a section that ask you to really examine your heart, I realized that I have idols.  Big ones!  Strong ones!  Dominant ones!

Though I haven't physically built any idols, I have constructed them in my heart.  

Author Kyle Idleman encourages the reader to answer the following questions.

1. What disappoints you?
2. What do you complain about the most?
3. Where do you make financial sacrifices?
4. What worries you?
5. Where is your sanctuary?
6. What infuriates you?
7. What are your dreams?

Know what I found?  I have the same answer to 5 of these 7 questions.

And though different, I didn't like my answer to the other two questions either.

It is heartbreaking to realize that not only have I made this particular thing in my life an idol, but it is a HUGE one.

I have been asking myself a question quite a bit lately.  Tonight I realized I have been asking the wrong question. 

The right question is about my love for my Father.  Is He enough for me?  I know the right answer is yes, YES HE IS!  But I haven't been living that way.  Honestly I haven't been feeling that way.

I was able to go to Him tonight and seek forgiveness.  I was able to lay my idol down at the foot of the cross and ask the Lord to help me seek Him and only Him.

When you can picture the cross and picture yourself kneeling at the foot of the cross giving it all to God...

It brought me to tears.  I am so thankful that He loves me always.  Even when I'm not loving him the way I should.  Even when I'm so undeserving...which is all the time.

I know this will be a daily struggle for me.  I will have to go to Him time and time again and give it back to Him.

I am so thankful that He allows us to do that.

Acknowledge that the Lord is God!  He made us, and we are his.  We are his people, the sheep of his pasture.    Psalms 100:3

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

What I'm Loving Wednesday

1. Living at the lake!  
I have lost count of the number of times people have asked me how I'm liking living in Heber.  Right now I love it.  Week night swims with the husband?  It doesn't get much better than that.  But I don't feel like the full effects of this move have hit me yet.  The school year hasn't started yet.  Though I've been working in my classroom, I haven't officially started teaching at QES yet.  Ask me again in a few months how I feel about the move.  But for now I'm loving it!

2. My 2nd job.  
Thirty-One has been such a blessing.  Lately I have felt like I was at a stand still with this job.  With the move, I feel like I'm starting all over.  It's hard.  It requires me to step outside of my comfort zone.  But I'm getting there.  I am so thankful for all my friends and family who have helped me get my business started.  

3. My new CD! 
 I picked it up at Mardel last week for only $5!  I've been listening to it ever since.

4. My school planner. 
 I'm ready for school to start just so I can start using it.  I LOVE planners, but this one is by far my favorite.  I created it myself so it is perfect for my needs.  I had it bound at Office Depot for less than $5.  

5. My family.  
Always my family!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

With a Little Help From My Friend

I have really been struggling with school related things.  I've been creating things for my classroom trying to trick myself into being excited.  But the excitement just hasn't been there.

I have spent three or four days working in my classroom.  It is finally starting to feel like my classroom.  For the first few days I felt like I was intruding on someone else's territory.  

It was hard.

Working hasn't been as much fun this year.  I've been working alone.  No crafting, shopping, or bouncing ideas around with Traci.

I know I sound like a small child whining about not teaching next door to her anymore, but ya'll she is my best friend.  I miss her.

Plus I've never dealt well with change.

This past week my friend, Amanda, accepted a job in the same area.  She will be teaching 7th and 8th grade Math plus one other subject  We've been talking about decorating classrooms, discipline strategies, and everything else.

She came with me to my classroom today to help me decorate and work.  Poor girl had no idea what she was getting herself into.  HA!

Little did she know, I had a HUGE project for her.  I knew she would do a great job.

I had three full size filing cabinets and a small one in my classroom.  They were old and hideous.  They have bothered me since I first saw them.  I knew instantly that I wanted to give them a make over.

Then I convinced myself that was a project for next year.  I had other things I wanted to spend my time/money on.  But every time I went in my classroom, these ugly cabinets bothered me.

These pictures don't do the ugliness justice.  They were so dirty and gross.

Yesterday, I decided that I would cover them with duct tape.

I may have spent thirty minutes or more looking at duct tape in Wal-Mart trying to decide what colors I wanted to use.

Now my filing cabinets looks like this!!

This is in large part due to Amanda.  She is the duct tape artist.  I took the handles off and she did all the duct tape.

It was a full day's job.

You will notice that there are only two filing cabinets now.  Half way through, Amanda suggested we throw the others out.  HA!!  

Honestly, I can't see myself ever using them all.  And now I have a space for my mini fridge.  YAY!

I am so in love with them.  They look a THOUSAND times better.

The best part though was spending the day working in my classroom with my friend.

Today was sooo good for me.  I needed it.  It was nice to have someone there to help me and be a sounding board for my thoughts and ideas.  Even if she thinks I'm little crazy about decorating. :)

I am looking forward to repaying the favor and helping her in her new classroom.

It's nice to have a friend amidst all the change. 

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Our Saturday

The nephews are here today.  They followed us home last night after Pryce's birthday party.

Can't believe he is 15!  He was so tiny when Andrew and I started dating.  

This pic was taken on vacation in September 2004.  

We went out on the boat this morning.  The Winburns joined us which is always nice.  Had lunch and the boys played a couple of games of lake basketball.  I love having the nephews here.  They seem to really enjoy being out on the boat and that makes me happy.  

We also took Liberty out on The Liberty Belle for the first time today.  

She did so well.  Actually they both did so well today.  I was very proud.

Though she wasn't a fan of swimming.

I'm pretty sure I would have drowned if I hadn't been wearing a life jacket.  Ha!

Andrew blew up an air mattress for them to float around on.  They weren't too crazy about that either.

Liberty spent quite a bit of time on the boat crying because she wanted the ball that the boys were playing with.  She likes to play fetch.

She could have also been crying because Pryce was in the water and she wasn't.  My sweet brown dog LOVES Pryce.  She kept leaving me to go sit with him.  Talk about breaking a furbaby momma's heart.

Now Andrew and the nephews are out playing golf.  LBs and I are at home resting.

There is nothing sweeter than time with good family and friends.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Fireworks & a Mini Vacay

Andrew was off work all last week.  It was nice having him home during the day even though we weren't home for most of the week.

He was able to play golf with his oldest brother on Monday.  They played a course that is played by professionals.  I am so thankful they had this time together.  I know they are too.

I had a workshop Monday and Tuesday.  That takes up my entire day.  I walked away with some great ideas and a couple of new friends.  I'll call that a success.

Wednesday we drove to Little Rock to attend a funeral.  A friend of ours lost his dad suddenly to a heart attack.  So sad.  I'm thankful we were able to be there for him.  As we were getting ready to leave, Andrew hugged him one more time and they exchanged I Love You's.

I'm so thankful to be married to a caring man who isn't afraid to cry or show his emotions.

I had a list of places I wanted to go while we were in Little Rock.  Target was pretty high on that list.  Oh how I miss Target.  Andrew kept asking why we were there.  I had no real purpose.  I just wanted to wonder around and look.

The rest of my stops were to purchase things for my classroom.  I have a list of projects I want to finish, but I'm limited to Wal-Mart.

Thursday we spent the day cleaning The Liberty Belle and getting ready for the next couple of days.   That night we along with some friends enjoyed a night on the lake.  We took the boat to the other side of the lake, grilled burgers, swam, and watched fireworks.  It was fun!  We parked beside some family and friends and swam over to say hi.

We took it easy Friday.  Lots of napping.  Friday evening we were back on the boat.  This time we didn't leave our slip.  We had a crew there.  I forgot my camera so no pictures. :(

We ate tacos and watched the fireworks again from our slip.  I think Andrew and I had more fun this night than the night before.

Saturday we dropped the dogs off at their vet and headed to St. Louis for a mini vacation.

It was another night of fireworks.  This time under the arch.  Very cool!

Between that nap and the fireworks we watched an air show and Counting Crows.

Concerts were the main attraction of this trip.  But Sunday Andrew took me to the St. Louis Outlet mall.  Score!!  I have been wanting some new clothes to wear to work and this was the perfect opportunity.  I got several great pieces that I LOVE and at a great price.

The main reason for the trip... John Mayer and Philip Phillips.

It was a GREAT show but OH MY!  It was H-O-T!  We just had to laugh at one point because we were both dripping with sweat and we were just sitting there.

Monday morning we woke up and drove home.  Andrew was hoping to work that afternoon.  Crazy man!  We came home and took a nap instead.

We enjoyed our week long vacation time with family and friends and a quick get away.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Modest is Hottest

When I was younger, I thought I needed to wear a two piece swimsuit.  Nevermind that I was incredibly uncomfortable in them.  They were what everyone was wearing.  They were what was hot.  They were what was sexy.  

Though some may be uncomfortable using the word, I believe every woman wants to be sexy.  We just have to learn to define sexy.  Sexy doesn't mean less fabric in your clothing.  It doesn't mean tighter clothing.  Let's leave some things to the imagination ladies.

I am a married woman.  I love my husband so much.  I want the intimacy that we share to be special and just between the two of us.  That is the way God designed it.  It's the best way.  

If I'm not dressing modestly - and that includes swimwear - then my body isn't something special just for my husband the way it should be.

Most of us wouldn't walk around on the beach in our bra and panties so why do we feel it is okay to walk around in a bikini.  They are essentially the same thing.

As I have gotten older, I have decided I don't care what everyone is wearing.  I don't care that I may be the only woman on the beach in a one piece.  

I want to be comfortable.  But more than that I want my life - wardrobe included - to honor God and my husband.  

Several years ago, I was introduced to Lime Ricki.  They have the cutest swimsuits that are all modest. After consulting Twitter, I did something I thought I would never do.  I ordered a swimsuit online without ever trying it on.  

It arrived very quickly.  Great service!  

I LOVE this swimsuit.  It is made very well.  It is cute.  I am comfortable wearing it.  I was concerned about the bottoms.  Because I was shopping the clearance section, the bottoms I wanted were not available in my size.  I went with some that I thought would be higher on my waist than I would like.  They aren't.  They are PERFECT.

I loved it so much I bought another one.

I wasn't a fan of this one when I first put it on.  That ruffle just wasn't doing it for me.  I wore it for the first time last month and once it is wet, it is much better.  It is now my favorite.  That ruffle part comes down completely over my bottom.  It reminds me of a 50's style swimsuit.  I LOVE it.

I ordered my third swimsuit from this site this year.  

I have bought all three of these from clearance.  Though they are well worth the money.

I've got my eye on a couple of the new styles for this season.  

If you are looking for a modest swimsuit, you definitely need to check out Lime Ricki.  They are not paying me to write this, nor have they asked me to.  I'm just really pleased with their product and wanted to share with you.