Saturday, May 9, 2015

Among the Apple Blossoms

Rebekah is, by far, the most willing subject I have to work with around here. :) She was so gracious this morning to let me drag her out of bed and go catch some shots in the early morning light.



































And my, am I enjoying photography again. Spring definitely re-inspired me. :)

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Check out my travel blog!

Although there's only one post up (and it's not even legit!), keep in mind that I'll be posting about my trip on this new travel blog!

Monday, May 4, 2015

lilac scents ♥

#1
The evening was so lovely, and the subject so beautiful... it called for some pictures. Below are 5 editing jobs; I'd love to hear what your favorite is. I like them for different reasons, and I could put them in different places for different moods. :)
#2

#3

#4

#5

#6 (Original)
On a different strain...

I have been seriously considering and thinking about changing my blog. But before I moved forward, I needed another opinion.

As I was browsing through my old posts last night, I was trying to find a theme. But honestly, there's no theme. And I keep reading that all blogs should have a theme. :) What do my readers say? Is the randomness of my blog preventing me from earning more readers? Should I have a theme? If so, what should my theme be?

I tend to love posting about everything - everyday life, photography, things from the Word, family updates, projects, cooking, and well... almost everything!

And I love to write about each of those things. I almost feel that if I didn't blog whatever randomness was on my heart at that moment, it wouldn't accurately portray me.

OK - now I need opinions. Because I'm about to ditch this blog and start over. ;)

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Three Reasons to Blog Again

Although there are many more than three reasons to blog again, I have quickly decided on three that are... important.

1) It has been too long since I've blogged
2) St. Valentine's bones are rather disturbing... just sitting there and staring at you every time you enter my blog
3) I'm going to Italy

Yes - you did hear me right. Italy is next on my destination list. And for several reasons!
Venice
Cinque Terre
Rome
 Tuscany
Vatican City

It has been a dream of mine to travel -- for several years. And after asking Dad and Mom, and seeking the Lord, God has opened the doors for me to travel to Italy with my dear Mommy! :) We are scheduled to leave fairly soon. I know that millions upon billions of pictures will be taken, and they'll be posted someday to this blog... or another. I'm thinking of starting afresh... we'll see!

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Happy Valentine's Day!

Okay... those of you who know me well may think, "Uh... she's doing a Valentine's post?" ;) But of no worries, I'm not going to write a cheesy ridiculous post about Valentine's Day. I think people definitely take this ancient Roman holiday way too far. But despite all that, I thought I'd share something I ran across last night. :)

This is St. Valentine's skull, preserved in the Bascilica of Santa Maria in Rome. :) I'm still not sure I really like this picture. ;)

Yes, he was a martyr for the faith; and was killed on February 14, 269 AD. Not much other than that is known about him, but can this be a reminder to pray for persecuted Christians around the world? That they will stay strong in the midst of persecution, and be willing to die rather than deny?

Friday, January 23, 2015

Encouragement from the Word

"But now, thus sayeth the LORD that created thee, O Jacob, and He that formed thee, O Israel, 'Fear not, for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name: thou art mine. When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through tht eirvers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned, neither shall the flame kindle upon thee. For I am the LORD thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Savior.'" ~Isaiah 43:1-3
  "But the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father..." ~John 15:26
"Behold, I have refined thee: but not with silver, I have chosen thee for the furnace of affliction. For mine own sake, even for mine own sake will I do it: for how should my name be polluted?" ~Isaiah 45:10
"If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him." ~John 14:23
"If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments; and abide in his love." ~John 15:10
"This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you." ~John 15:12

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Culture of the Islands



Hawaii. When one hears the name, they may think of it as a bit of a mystery state, one that isn’t as easy to visit as others, and maybe a bit unknown. My family and I have had the privilege of visiting this state twice in the course of the last seven years, and we have had the opportunity to relieve some of the mystery in our minds.

This trip, I purposed to take note of the culture, to observe the differences between that state and our 49 on the other side, and learn to appreciate it more fully. I personally have only visited the island of Kauai, but I almost think that if you see one island’s culture, you’ve seen them all. And by saying that, I’m not undermining the reality of each island’s uniqueness, but rather, taking them in as a whole.

In order to accomplish my goal, some note-taking occurred (little scribbles on the top margin of my journal, most times!), and by no means do I see this as exhaustive. This is strictly observation, nothing extremely extensive, and I am aware there are many gaps in my observations. I didn’t go out of my way to observe anything in particular, but what I noticed on the surface and managed to pick up as a fellow United Statesman is what went down in the notes. In order to relate what I’ve observed, I’ve decided to put down in story form an extremely exaggeratedly-filled day in the life of our family while staying there.

  Around 6:30, we start to stir from our various sleeping quarters – a couch for the three girls, and beds for the rest. We’ve missed the sunrise, but certainly not breakfast! We scatter about, reading our Bibles, and eating our cereal or oatmeal or whatever else we can scrounge up before we go about the rest of the day’s activities. 
  Today, we have a trip to the nearby beach planned, so we make some sandwiches to eat later. Oh dear! We’ve run out of peanut butter and oh! I guess maybe we should get some cheese, milk, POG (Passionfruit, Orange, and Guava juice), and yogurt. Looks like we’d better make a quick run to the nearby super mart. 
  As we walk to the car parked on the street, a friendly man passes on the sidewalk with a cheery, “Aloha!” We greet him in like manner then pile into our vehicle. We pull into Big Save, and browse the aisles for the necessary items. What? No yogurt? No milk? No cheese? It now looks like there won’t be any cheese for our chicken sandwiches. Bummer! Is it really true they only stock these stores two or three times a week? Thankfully we’ve found the peanut butter, and a few other things we’d forgotten we needed, and we go to the check-out. The Hawaiian cashier scans our items and we’re thankful she has paper bags for us to put our items in since plastic bags have been banned. We tromp out to the car, making the numerous chickens scatter to the bushes. As we load our bags into the trunk, we spot a beat up pickup driven by a native roar past with his sun-glassed son riding in the back. 
  We return to our house, finish making the sandwiches, and once again load up and head down to the beach. We drive down the road at a snail’s pace of 20 mph and dream of celerity until we’re granted 50 mph, but only for a short time before we have to slow back down to 30 mph. I agree with my dad’s statement, “Round here, it’s a never-steady speed limit, and an ever-changing speed zone.” As we cruise along, we pass a corn field with outhouses every hundred rows and lights along the perimeter to penetrate darkness when working in the night becomes a necessity. A little while later, we also spot horses put out to graze right up alongside the highway and we slow down to take a picture because it looks so strange. 
  Before long, we’ve arrived at the beach and as the sun blazes down, we watch the waves and take pictures. We laugh together as we notice that someone across the beach has decided a large family dressed decently on the beach is an interesting sight and deserving of pictures. We attempt to act normal and pretend not to notice. My gaze wanders to a jungle-like area across the way, and I know natives are probably there with their dogs, hunting for wild pigs. 
  Eventually, lunch sounds good, and we chow down before heading back home. Our gas tank is running low, so we pull into Costco to fill up. The price of fuel is shocking compared to back at home; we try not to wince as $3.78 a gallon goes into the car and out of the credit card and especially try not to think of the $1.81 price back at home. The rest of the ride is spent quietly, observing the flora and fauna. Plants from all over the world make up the landscape  – the Bird of Paradise, Thai plants, African Umbrella Thorn trees, and the Blood of Christ bushes, just to name a few. 
  After we arrive back home, we rest awhile before the older ones head out to Lapperts, one of the few places they serve coffee on the island. We just don’t understand why Shave Ice seems to be sold at every corner but coffee is so rare! As we putt down the street, we watch all the guys, young and old alike, walk around on the beach in their loose Hawaiian shirts and shorts – even the most dedicated formal button-up-shirt-guys seem to mysteriously break into Hawaiian shirts and shorts like the plague! We also watch the fishing boats float along the horizon, hoping for their next big catch. Once we arrive, we order mocha chillers for three, and sip them slowly once they’re made. 
  On our way back to the car, we pass both a tourist and a native busy chatting up a storm in pay phone booths close by. A surprise awaits us as we drive by a nearby resort – an authentic Hawaiian wedding is taking place in the yard! We curiously peer out the windows and notice the few attendees are all dressed in white, and someone there is serenading the group with the sound of the ukulele. 
   By this time, sunset is nearing, and natives and other workers are wrapping up their jobs for the day. The old-style lawn mower is stowed away in a nearby shed, the tiki torches are lit, and others run to their cars, ready to be done with the day’s work. To end the day, we, and many others, gather on the rocks and beach to watch the sunset. We all ooh and ahh, and take pictures, watch for whales while we’re waiting for the sun to actually set, and then keep our eyes peeled for the alleged green flash as the sun disappears behind the ocean. Then the time comes to say goodnight and aloha to a day gone by.

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