Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas can't be over yet!

I just found the most fabulous looking Christmas tree! It is so over the top and fun. I must remember this for next year. This is not a very good picture. To get a better idea take a look at this blog! I love Bakerella.

Inspiration for today

This is pretty lengthy, but so worth reading. During prayer time this morning at work one of my co-workers shared this with us. I felt like it was written just for me, but I wanted to share in case someone else needed it as well.

"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose" Romans 8:28 (KJV)

Recently I had an ah-ha moment as I was reading Acts 9. At first, the familiar story seemed dull. You know how it is when you've read or heard the same story over and over. Then a new revelation merged from the content. In my minds-eye I began to see the word "rejection," although it was not in written form. Perhaps I saw what I was feeling that day—rejected.

I was at the part of the story where Saul, a murderer, had just been transformed into Paul, a disciple of Christ. Even though Paul was a changed person, many rejected him because of his past reputation as a murderer. This was only the beginning of Paul's trouble. Throughout his ministry, Paul not only experienced rejection, but great suffering and harassment too. For a changed man, his adversity seemed unfair.

Paul was devoted to serving Christ. He sacrificed his education, his life, and remained single so he could better serve the Lord. And yet, he was shipwrecked on several occasions, falsely accused, and thrown into prison more than once. Doesn't that seem odd for a man called of God? Wouldn't God's favor protect him from such adversity?

I thought about an illness that lingered with me all summer. It was so severe I was all but bed-ridden for months, unable to do life and ministry. I began to feel rejected by God. It didn't make sense. I was serving God in more ways than I could count. Then, without warning, strong winds blew in. Clouds hung overhead and it began to storm. Before I knew it I was "shipwrecked." You've been there, too.

Some of us have been rejected by family, friends, and co-workers. Others have been falsely accused. Some are imprisoned by finances, or blown around by the consequences of someone else's sin. It seems so unfair. You've tried to live right. You walk in obedience the best you can. You take God at His Word and trust in His promises. Shouldn't faith like this call for smooth sailing, instead of stormy, shipwrecking seas?

Isaiah reminds us that God's ways are not our ways. His thoughts and plans are higher than ours (Isaiah 55:8; paraphrased). It's tough to figure God out when He doesn't play by our rules or have the same agenda we have. We forget that God sees a much bigger picture.

If we follow Paul's journey, we find God working through the rejection, the trials, the prison time, and the shipwrecks. God used these hardships to position Paul. Not for fame, but to increase the Kingdom of God. Paul witnessed to the Pharisees through his rejection and imprisonment. People saw God's power at work when Paul survived the storms, when the snake bite didn't kill him, and when the jail shook, opening the doors and loosing chains. The Lord used these difficulties so others would witness His power and believe.

Paul allowed God to use him as a vessel. He didn't sit on the sidelines, full of self-pity and doubt. Instead, as Acts 16:22-31 tells us, after being stripped, beaten, severely flogged, thrown in the inner cell of a prison and his feet in stocks, Paul prayed and sang hymns to God. Others around him were listening. The power of God came in such a way, that the prison guard begged Paul to tell him, "What must I do to be saved?" He replied, "Believe in the Lord Jesus" (NIV).

God doesn't waste our pain, our rejection or our "shipwrecks." He uses them to bring about His plan—to position us so that others can see His transforming power at work in our lives and believe in the living God.

If that's true, and it is, then our challenge is to rise from the wreckage, like Paul, so that our lives will give testimony that draws others to the Master. Today I will no longer sit on the sidelines of life full of self-pity. I choose to rise, pray and praise, so that God can position me to shine for His glory, and so that others will believe.

Dear Lord, forgive me for wallowing in self-pity and rejection. I trust that You see the bigger picture. I believe there is a purpose for my pain. Strengthen me to rise from my ashes so that others will see You are my help and my salvation. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

this was taken from Proverb 31 Ministries:
written by: Micca Monda Campbell

(my personal reflection)
If anyone has ever felt "shipwrecked" you can totally relate to this. I think when we become Christians we do just assume that God will protect us from everything that is bad. Then when something happens we are so quick to question Him and ask why me?? We forget that God truly wants what is best for us and we fail to take responsibility for our own actions. It's usually not God leading us to these "bad" things, it's us ignoring God's plan, doing our own thing and then when it turns sour that's when we turn to God. I truly believe if that's the only time we are coming to God, when things go wrong, then He will allow that to happen just to get a chance to talk to us.

Monday, December 28, 2009

California here we come

Kolby and I have decided to go to California this summer! I do believe the last time we were there was 2006 so it's long overdue! My sister,her husband and 3 kids live there. When I was in High School I went as often as possible, and stayed for as long as I could in the summertime. Throughout my visits I managed to make a lot of friends. I have convinced one to move here already, and one is considering it! I don't know why they want to move from sunny California to cold boring Illinois, but they do!

Anyways, I was skyping with my sister and her husband on Christmas and they mentioned that they would have some vaction time coming up so it sounded like a perfect time to go. We are so looking forward to it! They are generous enough to let us crash at their place which means a free place to stay and more time with them. My niece has been looking forward to another sleepover since they came out for my wedding.

Here is the beautiful family we are looking forward to see!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

So this is the New Year

This may be a little premature but I am looking forward to a new year. 2009 was by no means a bad year at all but I actually have some new year resolutions!

This one feels so cliche to say but I really do want to start working out. Not to help my figure, but my health overall. For being thinner I am not very healthy. On top of that I've been told that I have a heart like a little kid. I got an EKG a few weeks ago, nothing really came of it but my doctor said working out would help my heart...and that's a good thing! To explain a little bit further I was at the chiropractors this summer and he said he heard something so I should mention it to my Dr. When I saw her she said it was not an arrhythmia but when I inhaled and exhaled it went either too fast or too slow (I really can't remember what she said) but she said it was common in children but adults grow out of it....not me though! So that's that!

I would also like to read the whole Bible. I have been a christian for 9 years and I have never read the whole thing. I feel terrible saying that but it's the truth and the first step to changing I think is admitting faults. A few weeks ago I started the read the Bible in a year (http://www.christadelphia.org/readplan.htm). This reading plan is actually really great, it takes me exactly 20 minutes every morning. That is really no time at all. However, I got out of the habit. January first I am determined to start it up again!

Another goal I have is to stop focusing on me. This one is very personal and something I'll probably have to work on and pray about daily but will be well worth it.

I would love to hear what everyone else has planned for their New Year resolutions!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Our Christmas story 2009

Kolby and I woke up bright and early this morning to open gifts. It was not planned but we woke up around 6:30. That is about the time I get up every morning so it's difficult to sleep in. We didn't lay in bed long because we were too excited and wanted to open gifts! Kolby is great at buying me things, so I of course loved everything I got. After that we got cleaned up and headed over to the in-laws house. There we ate a fabulous breakfast and opened gifts again. At noon it was time to go to my parents house where we ate again and opened presents again! Now we have the rest of the evening to relax. I thought I would share pictures of my Christmas decorations before they have to come down.

My favorite thing has to be fake fruit. Glittery, shiney fake pears are my favorite. I have a pretty good collection going. For Christmas I also love small trees, any size really, the more unique the better.This was my niece Caroline's and my nephew Dante's first Christmas!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


I LOVE coats. Currently I own 6 of them....That is a pretty ridiculous number I know. It is time to retire some of them though. I am a bargain shopper so I haven't paid more than $40.00 for any of them, which is why I can justify having 6 of them. Also, many of these coats I've had since high school, hence the reason why they need to be retired.
Since I am retiring most of them I thought it was only fitting to buy a new one!
This was another steal! I got it from Charlotte Russe and I love it. Now I'm on the look out for a coat that will go with my brown wardrobe.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Missy tagged me a while ago to blog about 5 obsessions. As she stated it's hard to come up with 5 things that I'm "obsessed" with. I've never thought of myself as a very passionate person either. Sometimes this bothers me. I wish I was more passionate about something, a hobby, learning a new skill....I don't know, just something. Missy's obsession's, or things that make her happy were a lot more ummmmm poetic I guess, for lack of a better phrase. And also some things are obvious, like Jesus and my family etc.

"So onto things that inspire me and make me happy that yes, I do tend to obsess over:"

My dog Olive. It's true, she's pretty much amazing. I honestly miss her if we've been gone for a while, however pathetic that may sound. She is well trained and hilarious. She is just the right mix of hyper/playful and a snuggle bug.

My hair. I love doing different things with it. I love to cut it pretty short, but I also love it when it's long enough to put in a pony tail. I have naturally curly hair, and I like the way it looks when it's put up. Kolby likes my short hairstyles, but he is also a big fan of long hair so I'm growing it out for him. In all honesty it won't look good much longer than it is now. Since it's naturally curly it's naturally dry...not to mention it's super thin on top of that! I posted this picture because I love this haircut! I saw it at target and decided when I want to cut it short again, which is inevitable, this is how I want to cut it. I texted Maggie asap.

Food blogs. I was going to put cooking, or baking. I'm far to lazy and unmotivated to actually cook gourmet or bake something extravagant. However, I love too look at food blogs. I love to see the creativity, the delicious food, dreaming of having a huge kitchen and plenty of time to experiment. I would also some day love to have my own cupcake bakery.

This is starting to turn into a food obsession! I sound like I may possibly be very overweight they way I'm rambling on and on about food! So I just admitted that I'm typically pretty lazy and unmotivated when it comes to baking. However, when I do bake my favorite part is making it look pretty. Of course I want it to taste good, but more importantly I want it to look fabulous!

My current obsession is my future. I am at that point in my life where it's time to think about babies, and living arrangements etc. etc.

Now it's time to tag people! Maggie, Annie, Amanda, Denise

Thursday, December 10, 2009

I've been told

I have been told that I look like all three of these women. I don't see it at all, I think I just look like me. But I guess to other people I resemble either a (possible) pot smoking adolescent, an older looking woman or a cougar....LOL
I thought I would share because I was just two times today that I look like Bella! hahaha

Friday, December 4, 2009

The land we love so much

When Kolby and I seriously started considering building a house we started looking for a place to build. We have always wanted to live out of town, but not too far. The idea of living out in the country is just so appealing to us. Not to mention we've been looking at houses for sale for a while now and can't find anything we like.
While browsing the reality websites we found a piece of land that we l-o-v-e-d! It's out in the country but in this little up and coming subdivision, the other houses are so cute too! I thought for sure this would be the place. On Monday I contacted the reality office to find out more information about it. The website said there were some restrictions, so I needed more details. I figured since it was in a subdivision it would have to meet some sort of size requirements etc. What I found out though really blew me away! There were multiple pages of restrictions...here are some of them:

- No more than three vehicles may be parked outside of the garage
- Must have at least 3 trees with trunk diameter not exceeding 2 inches, must be planted in the front
- All planning including landscaping must be approved by a board
- You may only have up to 2 domestic animals and non for breeding purposes

I mean the list goes on and on and on....I think it's a little overboard with some of the things. It's definitely not a right fit for us. I don't want to feel like I'm renting when I've purchased that land and built the house myself.
So the search continues!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

More to love

Here is a link to the house that we love. This will show the floor plans. http://www.globalhouseplans.com/plan_details.asp?id=16842

I really love how pretty much the whole downstairs is open. Then the upstairs is open to below...another feature that I love. Kolby and I have talked about making the rooms upstairs bigger and putting that bonus room in the basement. This could all change though. In fact Maggie is also building a house and her sister Annie built a house so they are also finding houses for me to look at. Just today Annie sent me a house that I love....oh the decisions. Thankfully I have a while before I have to decide.