Thursday, December 30, 2010

The end of a beautiful year...

 I am so amazed that almost one year has past in 2010. I have learned so much this year. Not only has a year past but so has twelve months of time spent with family, new books read, lessons learned, giggles laughed, tears cried, millions of new thoughts have raced through my mind this year. God has taught me so much through his word, through people he's brought to my life, books he's put in my path.
2010 has been a great year. Now it's time to make some more new year resolutions written and accomplished! Or maybe even get out some of my old ones. :-) 
      I don't know about you but I have a feeling that this new year will be monumental. I hope to learn a lot this year and I am getting my resolutions thought out and ready to face them with full fury. Here I come 2011! 





               What's been your favorite 2010 memory? 

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Sweet Sixteen...

It doesn't feel much different being sixteen as apposed to fifteen. When I was little I always pictured teens as old, mature and scary. But being at the height of my teen years, it doesn't feel too different than the rest of my life. There is a sensation of excitement saying, "I'm sixteen!". My responsibilities and capabilities will grow as I mature.

Standing back and seeing my life before me gives a thrill of past memories of childhood joys. Beautiful adventures that I reminisce, in the years to come.
I look at teens around me and wonder how they feel. Do they feel old? Do they feel mature and ready to face the world?
I on the other hand still feel very much like a kid and literally I am a child and always will be in God's eyes. I am God's eternal child. :-) I have many years ahead of me -if God allows- and though I'll get older and take on bigger tasks, my life will be the same in the sense that I am God's child and He's my father.:-)

Matthew 5:9
They are blessed who work for peace,
       for they will be called God's children.



John 1:12
 But to all who did accept him and believe in him
he gave the right to become children of God. 

{My family and I are still slowly recovering from the flu. But getting better none the less.}


I hope your having a nice day after Christmas!We had a nice white Christmas. Time to go enjoy it. Going out make a snow man later... :-)



Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

 But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished— he did it to demonstrate his righteousness at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus.  
                                                                       Romans 3: 21-26

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Music

 
 
Silent night holy night
All is calm, all is bright
Round yon virgin mother and child.
Holy infant so tender and mild,
Sleep in heavenly peace.
Sleep in heavenly peace.
 Silent night holy night
Shepherds quake at the sight,
Glories stream from heaven afar,
Heavenly hosts sing alleluia;
Christ the Savior, is born
Christ the Savior, is born.
Silent night holy night
Son of God, love's pure light
Radiant beams from thy holy face,
With the dawn of redeeming grace,
Jesus, Lord, at thy birth.
Jesus, Lord, at thy birth.

 One reason I delight in Christmas is the beautiful songs that fill the season. There are so many Christmas songs out there. In the beginning of December my sisters and I played at an hour and a half piano recital. Fifteen students and forty-eight songs. I didn't realize there were so many until you're waiting nervously for your turn. My favorite Christmas songs are mostly songs to sing to God. After all what is music with out glorifying the Creator of it? Christmas is only about two short days away!

 {I've been sick with the flu this week and some of my family seem to be catching it as well. Could you pray that we recover quickly? I appreciate your prayers. Thank you. }


 I hope you are enjoying a Merry Christmas week.

What's your favorite Christmas song?... :-)

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas thoughts




Amber Noelle had this video on her blog and I thought I'd post about it too. This video is very thought provoking. It makes me think if traditions I partake in are truly pleasing the Lord. Sometimes I do take Christmas and turn it into a holiday for giving and spending time with family when the real reason that I truly want to take part in it is to celebrate Jesus and meditate on the gift of Grace.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

My sister Mags...



 Today is my sweet sister Maggie's birthday.
She is turning thirteen today!
Out of my two sisters and I, Maggie has the best temperament.
She makes me laugh. She's a joy to be around. She's a talented artist.




I am always amazed at her drawing skills. She has a good eye and captures most anything she sketches. She's clever, witty, smart and bright. She has an eye for beauty. She's kind and sympathetic. She's artistic in most anything. She is wonderful at embroidery and is a skilled pianist. My sister is an amazing example of a godly young lady. She is one of my best friends.

I love Maggie!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Christmas musings...

Christmas is a joyful time to express thanksgiving, give to one another and most importantly celebrate Christ's birth and His beautiful gift of grace to us.
Every Christmas year my sisters and I enjoy making a gift for each person in our family. The past couple years our goal has been to make something practical. The most fun part is to try and keep every one's gift secret. It's harder than it sounds. Especially when certain people try to look...
I am making most of my handmade gifts out of this fuzzy fleece. I can't tell you what I am making other than it's warm and fleecy... I've been busy snipping and sewing. 

I love to think up gifts; the hard part is making sure you have a enough time to make them all. I try not to buy all the gifts. Handmade gifts seem more original and creative. I am almost done with my gift making and shopping. After a rampage of sewing, I should be done. ;-)
 The past several days we've had a blissful dusting of snow flurries.... the snowflakes don't stick, but it's exciting since we've never had snow this close to Christmas.
              I do hope it stays cold. I would be so happy if it snowed (dusted) on Christmas.
                             
                     
Gift making, gift wrapping, excitement building, smiles growing, joy flourishing;
and most importantly Christ is born!



What's your favorite part about Christmas?.....
            ..........What are your traditions?
                                             
                    
                                              

Friday, December 10, 2010

Heath Bars


                               Chocolate, peanut butter, saltine crackers.
                                                           :::                                    :::
                          Butter and... Sugar....

 I know that many people are participating in Annie's sugar free challenge. I am not....
I didn't think I had the will power when I heard that Annie was having the challenge and I was in fact correct. I have been pigging out on so many sweets! With Thanksgiving, so many tempting recipes, and my grandma visiting the Hershey store and bringing back chocolate, I have failed with just trying to cut down on sweets! On the other hand, I have been enjoying myself....
Up top our pictures of a some very yummy heath bars (Not health bars, heath bars) that I made with this recipe.
I apologize to those who are doing the challenge. I might be making you struggle, but these bars are good!
The holidays are a time to eat lots of sweets. Right? Okay, so I am trying make myself feel better.

I hope you all have a sweet Christmas season, sugar or not...!





Sunday, December 5, 2010

Turning the light on...

 Do you ever have a cleaning job that your assigned and you leave the light off?
Maybe sometimes you just forget to turn the light on or maybe you do it on purpose. When your finished cleaning it looks like you did a great job, but when you or some one else turns that light on it doesn't look as nice as you thought. There are still spots uncleaned. Particles yet to be vacuumed, dirt still left to be mopped, puddles of juice dried and stuck on the floor. We can compare this to our lives.I can compare it to my life.

It's easy to do the right thing in areas where the light's off and harder where the light's on. We can clean up our life and paste a smile on, but when God turns on the light were we really doing our best? Were we doing the right thing only in the areas where people see? We can only do a good and perfect job when our heart is willing to do it and when the light is on. At times I feel like I am doing a nice job having a good attitude or helping people. But when I step back, I realize I wasn't doing my best and I wasn't having a good attitude for the right reasons. It's easy for me to go out in public help others and put a smile on. But when it comes to cleaning around the house, I don't feel so cheerful. I end up hurrying and doing a quick job with not much effort involved. It's easy to act like I'm a happy person in public when everyone is watching, than to be happy doing regular jobs when no one's watching. Most importantly God's watching. When I pretend to do a good job I am not tricking Christ. He knows when I am not doing it for him.
God knows when we have the light on. Let's shine it bright on our heart.

Psalm 97 :11
Light shines on those who do right;
       joy belongs to those who are honest.


 Isaiah 5:20
How terrible it will be for people
who call good things bad
    and bad things good,
    who think darkness is light
       and light is darkness,
    who think sour is sweet
       and sweet is sour. 


 Matthew 5:16
...Let your light so shine before men,
that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Tis' The Season

My little brother... Isn't he darling? He is so photogenic....
 With celebration on Thanksgiving week with my mother's family on Thursday and celebration on Friday with my Daddy's family and a spend the night with our dear cousin Jenna, I have had a beautiful week. As the closing of Fall seems to be blowing goodbye, I have had to get out my coat and warm socks for the chilly days. I am not ready to give up the comfortable fall afternoons just yet, but as I see the temperatures drop, I guess I'll have to learn to like it. :-)


We took our annual trip to the tree farm and pick out our special tree. I am a little disappointed with how few decorations we are putting up this year... With the little ones, child proofing has to be in order, unless we want an abundant supply of broken ornaments... :-) I think our tree still looks quite nice. :-)


My family and I love to get out the Christmas music and dance to our favorite songs and I love to bundle up with blankets at night. Christmas is truly a special time every year. I am getting plans ready for Christmas gifts. Buying fabric, wrapping, sewing, and many other present making and gift creating are my plans this month. God is truly blessing our family this year and what an adventure it is to make Him the focus this season.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving blessings...

I hope you all are having a wonderful holiday! Much celebrating, fellow shipping, and eating are on my agenda for today and tomorrow. 

Here are only some of the blessings I am thankful for...
~...My salvation and grace... I am amazed that Christ made me and calls me His. Even when I sin, He forgives me for all my imperfections. I am blessed by being God's child. ~ ...My family. My two wonderful, wise parents. I am so blessed to have parents that love me and give me the best they can give. ~... My sisters. What would I do without them? They make me laugh. They are a joy to be around and an inspiration and comfort. ~... My brothers. I love them so much... They are an incredible gift from God. The joy they bring to our family. ~ ...Food. God always provides. I have never been with out food. I am so thankful for that. I am thankful for how yummy He makes it. So much variety and tastes. ~... A home. I wonderful home that gives protection and shelter. It keeps me warm and safe. It is not only a protection but a beautiful home. ~... My bed. What a comfortable sleep I get on it every night.~ ... Education. I am so thankful to not only have so many different sources and tools of how to learn, but I am truly grateful to be home educated. It is such a blessing to have a choice on who educates me and what is used to help me learn. I am so happy that I can learn and pray freely all day to God. ~... Health. I am healthy so often and so blessed with a working and functioning body. ~... Clothes. I am so thankful to be able to have something to wear. Not only am I blessed with clothing but I have so much of a choice as to what to wear. ~... Beautiful weather. God gives such a variety of weather and seasons. It's a joy to watch His hands in nature.~... Sunshine and Moon. The sun and the moon are such a great source of light. What would we do with out light? We would not be here. ~... Nature. God's lovely creations are awe inspiring.~...Medicine. I am so glad to have medicine to help feel better and be healthier.~...Friends.What a blessing to have like minded Christians in my area, who I can fellowship with and enjoy good times with.~... My Church. God has given me a wonderful church that I can attend and worship God with freely.~...Music. What would life be like with out melodies? ~...Violin and Piano. I am so happy that I have the opportunity to learn an instrument and am so blessed to have them in my home.~...Paper. I am so happy to have paper. I am able to write down words and sketch and draw on clean pieces of lovely white paper.~...Cameras. What would I do with out a camera? It is such a joy to be able to capture life in the lens of a camera and show with my abilities God's creation.~...The comforts of life. I have so many comforts. Everything I use is clean and comfortable. God blesses me. ~...The bible. I am so grateful God has given this book to all of His children. His words give me hope and a future.~...Laughter. What beautiful noises and joy laughter brings. One of my favorite pass times is laughing.~...Life! What a precious gift life is. Not just life here on earth but the life each of us has in store for us in heaven with God!

What a beautiful day to meditate on how blessed we are on this Thanksgiving day.
 We can always look at life and see God working in are lives.
                            What are you thankful for?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

My Testimony...

I love to to read and listen to peoples' testimonies. God works in each person's heart uniquely to turn them to Him. Although I have always grown up in a Christian home I thought I'd share with you more specifically what a huge change was in my and - our family's- walk with God.

Life

"Life" is my testimony; a time for me in which God changed and worked in my heart and my life. My life changed with my baby brothers. About five years ago my father felt that God wanted him to pray for twin boys. After my youngest sister was born in 1997 my mother had tubal ligation surgery. (Her first three pregnancies were hard on her.)  My youngest sister was about nine when my father started praying.
 Long story short a year passed with Daddy still praying almost daily. We were blessed to live near a very skilled doctor whose whole profession was focused on performing tubal reversals. Through much consideration, discussion, and prayer. My mom decided to go through this surgery. Now with any surgery there are risks. Were we as a family making a rash and unnecessary decision? 

The surgery is not always guaranteed to work, but miraculously within a week after the surgery, my mom was pregnant. Through many weeks of waiting, (and an oversight by the doctor thinking only one baby was in my mother's womb for several of the first weeks) going through ultrasounds, and much anticipating, sure enough when the week we were to know the gender arrived, there in my mom's womb were two precious twin boys.

Before babies it was me and my two sisters.With free time and almost no responsibilities, we had a very boring life. ( So I think now.) When my brothers were born and we started to have more responsibilities, I first felt bothered and angered at more work. Why did I have to do these chores? Why did I have to change diapers? Why did I need to vacuum? As we got into more of a routine; -spreading responsibilities evenly between each family member,things got easier, but something else was changing.

Our family began to spend more time together. Whether we were doing chores or having fun playing with the twins. Before our brothers we hadn't even been eating together as a family every night. My sisters and I began trying harder to respect our parents. We began to watch less media and God placed people, books, movies, tapes, in our life that encouraged us in a new time in our life as a family. We began reading books together, talking together as a family, discussing everything together. My responsibilities were becoming greater. My life and relationship was strengthening with my family and with God. As I spent time with my brothers, I found joy and happiness taking care of them. I had loved playing with dolls in the past, but babies were so much more exciting and fulfilling.

 Life... is the word that I say changed me. My faults were revealed through dealing with my brothers, (Anger, selfishness, laziness) and I worked harder to improve. Prayer became more prominent and a truth that describes our change "God works in mysterious ways". My family has gotten closer to God as a family and individually. There are different ways for God to draw people to Him. But God decided that babies would start the change as we turned to Him.

Our family moves continually closer to our new found goal to please and glorify God. With more life in our family we have had many laughs, smiles, and treasured memories. Through the twins, frustrations and struggles have come, but it is truly a sanctifying development. Now with three sweet baby brothers in our home, life is an adventure as God teaches us each day. With my mother pregnant with my sixth sibling, I anticipate how God will work in my and my family's life next.


Do you have a testimony? I would love to hear yours'! :-)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Life...



Most of the time if I feel stressed out, stopping what I'm doing and writing down thoughts, feelings and future events helps me clear my mind and reorganize. I think I usually write in a journal, write a letter to a pen pal, or write on my blog almost every day. I didn't use to write down anything if I didn't have to. But through the past few years I have gotten into the habit of writing down something almost every day. Whether it be a to do list, a future post, my feelings on something or a poem. I am some what obsessed with writing down what's in my brain. Which in a way is sometimes not a good thing. :-) 

Since this post is titled "Life" here's what I've been up to:


~I have been practicing for our Christmas recital.We are going to have it at a nursing home. I am actually quitting piano after this recital. I am sad, but I really want to focus on violin for the time being. It's getting harder to keep up with both.

~I had a photo shoot with our cat, Pebbles.
  She is a very sweet cat. She's not very photogenic. It took some work to get some good ones.
  Here are several of the photos.  
                                                   She loves playing with yarn.
She has a cute mustache(Got milk?) and hazel eyes.
 Her nicknames around here is Kitty and The cat... Very original. :-)
She is so tolerable with the boys. No matter what happens she'll always forgive.It's amazing how much she'll put up with. I love it on cold nights when she curls up on my bed.    



~ Planning Christmas gifts for family and friends.

~ Knitting and crocheting squares. 

~I don't know how anyone can not take at least one picture this season. The camera and I have been almost inseparable. The leaves are so gorgeous...





 ~ Bought some fabric...
 I am going to make a skirt out of it, but not just yet. It's my birthday project. :-) I'll be sewing it on my birthday. (With the stress of the holidays I don't want to take on too many projects, so this will be my after Christmas project.)

~ I've been driving at least once a week. The fastest speed I've driven has been 50 mph. It's really fun. Soon I'll be taking trips to stores. I've only driven to get practice, -mostly in neighborhoods-, but now I can actually practice driving with a purpose!

~ I am so excited about the new baby. My Mom went for another ultrasound. It is now confirmed that it is a girl. Now it's time to shop! We have lots of little boy clothes, but almost no little girl clothes. :-) I can't wait for another little baby in the house.

So that's what I've been up to -other than school-...

                                         What has kept you busy?



Sunday, November 7, 2010

Reformation day...

Last Sunday our church celebrated reformation day. We have a party each year in honor of a reformer.We have studied Martin Luther, John Calvin and Martin Bucer. We have food, games, fellowship, and "some" candy. :-) We always have a fun time dressing up for the occasion. My sister's and I usually go to a thrift shop and find a cheap dress to decorate. I found this one at the thrift store and thought I'd buy some lace to decorate with. I ended up using exactly 12 yards of red lace that I bought from the craft store. I thought would have some left over, but I had just enough for the bodice front. I was relieved when I pinned the lace on the front, because I beginning to get skeptical as to if I'd have enough. I bought some ribbon for the waist and it was finished. Cheap, elegant and fun to design.
You can visit my family's blog here for a slide show of the event, if your interested.

                                                         Here it is before...
                                                  ....And after! 
 (The edge of the dress.)




Saturday, November 6, 2010

A post of sorts

 Hope Marie tagged me. Thank you Hope Marie!

Here is the tag:
(Answer ONLY with the first letter of your last name!)
I think I will answer with the letter of my first name instead, if that is all right. :-)

A state?
Louisiana

A country?
Luxembourg

A food?
Lasagna

A clothing store?
Levi's

A fruit?
Lemon

A girls' name?
Hmm... Leah? ;-)

A boys' name?
Leonardo

An activity?
Life(The board game)

A dessert?
 Lemon bars

 A town?
Leah lane... funny huh?
I looked up Leah into Google maps and there is a street named Leah. I feel honored. ;-)



That was fun!









I apologize for the lack of posts on my poor blog. I have a few posts that I plan on typing up. I have been somewhat busy.
But it is a good kind of busy. God has blessed my family and me abundantly.
I have been spending my time doing school, ( I have actually really been enjoying myself. Having a good attitude, while learning and studying helps.)
Knitting and crocheting squares, Writing poems, Playing my violin, practicing Christmas songs on the piano, taking many fall photos,
 Reading Start here and I kissed dating good bye. ( I have Boy Meets Girl and Before you meet prince charming on hold at the library; I have some thought provoking reading ahead of me.Have you read any of these books? If so how did you like them?)

I have been enjoying life, I have been inspired by the fall season, I have been inspired by books that I am reading, I have been inspired by the people that I see and talk to, but I am in awe of God and his plan. Do you ever have those times when you really see God working in your life; when you see from the beginning to the now and you realize how much God is changing your world and your life. He truly is my inspiration and my comfort when I feel hopeless and troubled. When you have a plan and then God changes it unexpectedly for the better. I love to see the outcome of Christ's hand.


What have you been enjoying the past week?...

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Health and Contentment

 Thank you again for all your prayers and sweet well wishes. Every one in my family is doing much better! :-)

One blessing that I always find after being sick is a greater appreciation for health. I am so blessed with an abundance of health. And yet sometimes I find myself struggling with discontentment even with so much to be thankful for. I always seem to be waiting for something to happen and expecting something to make me really happy. Maybe a trip to the craft store to get more stuff, maybe anticipating a visit with friends, maybe waiting for an illness to subside, maybe waiting for an event to come or a package or letter to arrive in the mail. At any example, expectations seem to get in the way of my joy. But what I need to be doing is standing in each moment, and being happy in life right now, loving God in my life minute by minute. No matter the time, the trials, the circumstances, the expectations, "This time" is the time to be content and enjoy life.
Because God is with me next month, next week, tomorrow and now. Christ is the one where all blessings flow. How can I not be thankful with an awesome, loving, father like Christ?...


What are you thankful for? 


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Update: Sick

Thank you all for your prayers! Unfortunately my Mom did get sick-Sam and Joe were almost recovered when she was sick thankfully- and I was planning on blogging yesterday that I had not gotten sick, but alas, before bed and all of last night I felt horribly nauseous. I threw up five times last night. But thank God I feel so much better today. My appetite is definitely not back to normal, but I am surprised that I even have a appetite.

This has been a very sick year for us. I really am sick of being sick. I think every one is slowly recovering. My Mom and Maggie felt sick, but neither of them vomited. Abby hasn't really gotten very nauseous. So, every one has gotten sick except Grandma.

Thanks again for all your prayers!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Prayer Request: Sick

Could you please pray for my family? We caught a stomach bug. John already got it, Sam and Joe had it at the same time and threw up at the same times every hour last night. My father is sick and my two sisters are sick.
Could you pray that neither my mom or me gets it? My mom is so tired from last night and it would make things a lot harder if either she or I got it. I know it's up to God. Please pray that my mom can gets some rest and my whole family recovers quickly. Thanks so much!
Hopefully this sickness will go away soon. :-)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Music...


My mother won this giveaway recently and the CD that she received has been such a blessing, not only to her, but to our family. Good wholesome music is very lacking in our society. Not only in places we go,
( restaurants, stores, etc.) but in our homes. We hardly listen to any music in our house. Just because we haven't taken the time to buy some. Our family loves humming. Someone is almost always using there vocals in our house. (In fact my little brother is humming right now.)
When my mother won.  I was so excited and I love listening to the music... I really want to get some more Getty music. (I read two very thought provoking articles on music recently, here and here.)
Music truly effects people. I think that it is so important to expose ourselves to the right kind of music.
Words to a song are as just important as the notes. Music can be inspiring or uninspiring, despondent or delightful, calming or confounding. But really music should be pleasing in the ears of God. Whether a song is happy or sad, it should be wholesome and honorable to Christ. I thought I would link to the lyrics of this beautiful song, Speak, O Lord. Click here.

"But this is the one to whom I will look: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my words."
~Isaiah 66:2


Have a lovely musical day!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Earrings!

You might not have known, but I won a giveaway for some beautiful earrings! I have been anticipating their arrival and I was very happy to receive them in the mail!

                             I love a combination of bright and elegant clothing and jewelry...
              ...and these earrings are both elegant and stylish.

 I thought this little print on the earring card was cute.
 Don't you worry, I shall keep them for as long as they will possible last!
                                               
                             I am definitely going to wear them often....


                                       I love them....
                                                     

Friday, October 22, 2010

"Fall" out there

I have been simply loving fall. I am all out there when it comes to anything autumn-y!
I decided to write a whole seasonal post.

I took these leaf photos by spinning them around.
With my sister spinning, we captured some unique pictures.





Here are a couple of poems that the season has inspired me to write...

 Autumn
It whispers with the leaves,
It talks through the breeze,
I hear it shouting with the gusts of wind.
It's icy breath touching my neck and arms.
Painting colors on the trees,
making music on bird's wings.
Soaring high and whirling low.
Sweet and sharp, like a harp:
 Jesus Christ's art.

Leaves
Streaked with color,splashed with detail,
vibrant shades of red, orange, yellow.
Dancing and swirling, frolicking with the wind,
whispering good byes, for it is summers end.



::Pumpkin cookies::
Here is a very tasty pumpkin recipe that I tried baking today... They are so yummy!
They seem to be more cakey than the classic cookie, but I can't stop eating them.
Click here for the recipe! They're like biting into an autumn breeze... almost. :-)

                                     In the oven.

                                         They contain cinnamon, nutmeg, all spice, vanilla and pumpkin.
                                     Many ingredients that taste like fall.

                                  My grandma got three pretty orange roses.
                                




God blesses us richly with beauty all around...it makes me happy when a new season arrives.
                                    
                   What have you been up to?...