Sunday, September 18, 2016

Currently: September

I borrowed this photo from farmgirl's dabbles since I am currently unable to upload pictures from my camera.

The Narnian: The Life and Imagination of C.S. Lewis by Alan Jacobs

to Jenny and Tyler "This I know"

how to cook grain and dairy free from the book "The Whole 30".
(so far I have made delicious turkey meatballs with almond flour and basil lime mayonnaise) 

to feel inspired and energetic after feeling lethargic for a LONG time

to be much more organized this fall

pears hopefully soon some applesauce from the apples in our neighborhood.

forward to hosting a mom's bible study group this year and
eating heaps of Australian pumpkin

for quality time with my husband

to write poetry again

hydrangea blooms, pears and apples

all this lovely fall sunshine and riding my bike

Levi's new "little man" haircut". Now he looks JUST like his daddy.

shorter days and earlier bedtimes

a cozy boyfriend style sweater, bangles, my favorite fall scarf, freshwater pearl earrings ,black skinny jeans, a smile :0)

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Quote of the Day


"Nature has an unparalleled capacity to stir our emotions, fostering raw and powerful feelings of wonder, awe, mystery, joy—and, yes, fear. Smelling a wildflower in an alpine meadow, sprinting into the ocean surf, and sharing a face-to-face encounter with a coyote are all experiences that differ mightily from virtual alternatives." - Scott D Sampson

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Tiny Things: Magnolia Flowers

I love macro and still life photography. Ironically, the majority of my photographs are of busy children and scenery. That being said, once and awhile I get to photograph something tiny and beautiful.  In this case it was the stamen of a magnolia flower.


Fitness Friday: Getting back on track

It has been a glorious summer filled with camping,  backyard BBQ's, swimming, entertaining, and berry picking. That being said, fall is steadily approaching and I have been putting a lot of thought into how I am going to get "back on track". Ordinarily I aim to workout 4-5 times a week and religiously track my macros, but during the summer I stop tracking macros, eat boatloads of fruit and only go for the occasional run or hike.  In doing so, I have definitely lost some muscle tone and put on a little fluff. No big deal. I love the saying "just pick up where you left off". My dad recently started weight lifting at the age of sixty six and looks amazing!!!!

He is a great reminder that it is NEVER too late to regain lost strength or get into the best shape of your life. Making time to workout sometimes feels like a logistical nightmare with three children, but I KNOW that it is important for my health and my sanity.

I was at Michaels craft store the other day looking for a few items for a baby shower I was hosting when I found the perfect fitness journal!!!! It is a product by Me and My Big Ideas and I can't help but think, "where has this been all my life"! I tried to create a fitness journal awhile back using pintables from Pinterest but I lost half of them before I managed to put them into a binder. Gah! I like this system because everything is clearly laid out, is filled with beautiful graphics and provides place to document EVERYTHING. I love to journal and chart things so  this is a match made in heaven.

This is an example of one of  the "Get Fit" boxes you can purchase from Michaels. There are also smaller packs available as well for those that want to add them to their "happy planners".

I really like the one I purchased. I plan on starting it in September.

I look forward to charting my progress on the this pretty little chart.

A monthly page where I can plan out and  record all my  monthly workouts.

A weekly page where I can record  my meals, caloric info and water consumption.

This is probably my favorite page. I love that it provides space for a progress photo as well as reflections on how the month went.

Here is an example of someone's fit journal.

Until September, I will continue to use the following pages to record details about my workouts and meals. Once I start using my "fancy fitness journal",  I will have a place to record my macros and workouts in one place. It is going to take some time to get back to where I was after relaxing so much this summer, but I am confident I will get there.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Quote of the day


                                     "It is my personal approach that creates the climate. 
It is my daily mood that makes the weather... 
I possess tremendous power to make a child's life miserable or joyous. 
I can humiliate or humor, hurt or heal. 
In all situations, it is my response that decides whether the crisis will be escalated or 
de-escalated and a child humanized or de-humanized."
-Haim Ginott

Friday, July 22, 2016

These Days: July

a bathing suit top from old navy, a sheer cover-up and a pair of cut-offs from bootlegger.
heaps of handpicked blueberries and raspberries

 calluses on my palms from doing chin ups and resistance training
that my girls got to with their Oma for the next couple of days

some new songs on my guitar
to music artists Jon Foreman, David Brymer and Will Reagan on YouTube

homemade raspberry kombucha
to start each morning with some quality time with Jesus
Christian Behavior by C.S. Lewis
jury duty in September

lots of smoothies for the kiddos and I

about making this blueberry zucchini cake with lemon buttercream

a baby shower for a friend

peaceful and relaxed

forward to camping in August with The Vage family at Ferrier and trying out my new Youique make-up from Keri Lynne.

lots of summer fun with friends

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Deeper Things: Dealing with the question of who I am as a "Christian Woman".

I identify as many things: feminist, mother, wife, sister, daughter, creative soul, world traveler, friend and giver of life to name a few. While I generally comfortable with all of those "titles", I have often struggled with my identity as a "Christian" woman. Why? Well, for many reasons actually. The word "Christian" can mean many different things to different people and, as much as it breaks my heart to say this,  it often denotes someone who is close minded, hateful, ignorant, and alienating.  Furthermore,  I grew up picturing women in the Bible as shadowy creatures, burdened down with children, "belonging to their husbands", silent, and unmentionable. Living under a patriarchal entrenched society, meant that they had little control over their lives. Even as a young women I found myself asking God, "was this your intention for women"?

In University, I minored in Women Studies, and while I enjoyed the lectures and assignments immensely, I often found myself experiencing a great deal of angst, sorrow and confusion. There are days that I would sob afterwards, crying out "do I want to be a part of a faith that historically undervalues women"? I would find myself thinking, "I am not okay with a religion that uses scripture incorrectly to render women powerless over their own lives"? As a feminist,I couldn't tolerate the thought of being considered less valuable than my male counterparts. Sometimes after reading the Old Testament , I would find myself asking God, "is this how you view me as well?  "Do you think that I have less value as a man? Am I an "afterthought? "Is it possible for me to serve a higher purpose other than that of bearing children?"

Oh, those were tough questions and they made my heart feel heavy but I continued to ask them anyway because I NEEDED answers.

I was initially VERY overwhelmed when I started to address the question of "who am I  a Christian woman", but once I focused my attention on how Jesus treated women, my fractured heart began to mend.

I began with this: If he, Jesus, is the physical manifestation of God on earth, than His view, and therefore God's view, of women would be evident  in the way He spoke to and treated them.  What I found brought me tremendous hope. Jesus not only listened women but also spent time with them and gave them important tasks. He liked them, esteemed them, and treated them the same as his male counterparts, even to the horror of even his closest companions. I thoroughly love what Ann shared over at "A Holy Experience" on this very subject:

"This is what God chose as best, this is where He first became one of us: God chose to make His entry point into the world through the holy space of a woman, to enfold Himself inside of a woman, to drink of a woman, be held and nourished and cared for by a woman — that’s the jolting truth of how God loves His daughters with His honor. That Christ never beat down a woman with harsh words or lusting eyes or sneering innuendos, but He stepped in and stopped a broken woman from the abuse of angry men. Christ didn’t degrade women in His talk, but He made women heroes in His stories. He invited a woman with a coin and broom to reveal the truth about the Kingdom of God. That’s how God loves His daughters with His words. Christ didn’t demonize women but He accepted the presence of a woman reviled by the self-righteous, He sat with the scandalous woman the righteous regarded as damaged goods, He welcomed the rejected and the immodest though he lost the respect of the religious. That’s how God loves His daughter with His grace. When Christ stepped out of that black tomb, he still didn’t choose to first manifest Himself to prestigious officials, religious leaders, the Twelve, but instead He revealed Himself first to the women, He entrusted the veracity of His resurrection to the testimony of the women, He offered the privilege of proclaiming Christ as the risen Savior to the women, though no court at the time would accept their testimony. That’s how God loves His daughters with His regard." - Ann

I found my heart leaping up within me! "Yes, this is the Jesus that my heart knows"!

 When we think about or describe God, we often do so using male attributes and language. What we fail to remember, is that both male and female were created in His image. God has MANY attributes that we would typically label "feminine". An article by Crossroads entitled "God's Feminine Attributes" expounds on this topic.

A mom's Bible study group I belong to, recently looked at a passage of scripture from  Proverbs 31 from a modern day perspective.  The woman in this passage of scripture was described as capable, efficient, wise, unafraid of the future, kind resourceful, trustworthy, and wise with her finances/profits /purchases. She was entrepreneur who purchased  vineyards to boot. She was not praised for being meek, obedient and unquestioning, but for being strong, and wise. Now, THAT is the kind of woman I aspire to be. I believe that is the kind of woman that Jesus wants me to be.

My journey is far from over. In fact, sometimes it feels as though it has just begun, but am excited for what lies ahead. I am excited to learn more about who I am as a woman of faith. I am not afraid of asking tough questions. There are many things that I am wrestling with as I write this piece and I know there will be difficult questions in the future, but I am confident in who I am in Christ and who He has called me to be.

So today, when I call myself  a Christian, I am saying that I am a follower of an incredible person who is the most profound example of love that I have ever encountered. His presence in my life changes EVERYTHING about how I see and interact with my world and I long to live my life in a way that emulates Him. I am not on board with bigotry, close mindedness, control, fear, exclusivity,
I am not defined but what I can and cannot do. I am defined by His incredible love for me.

So there it is. Jesus. It all begins and ends with Him.