Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Birthday Celebrations!!!

Today we celebrated my 17th birthday since I'm going to be out of town on a college visit for my real birthday.
I went into work to find a "happy birthday" balloon and cookie cake!! I was so surprised to find out that my sweet mommy had dropped it off before I got there!! So my coworkers and I pigged out on cookie cake!! :)

Aunt Diane came for dinner and we went to my fave Italian restaraunt. I walked in to see balloons in there as well!! My mom was all over today! She had also brought along these dorky birthday sunglasses. And yes I had to wear them!! LOL!! We then came home and opened gifts. As soon as I walked in the door I answered the phone to have Corinne tell me they'd gotten their referral!!! PTL!!! :) :) That was the best birthday gift I could've gotten. So of course I had to go over and see their pictures. Semlows, I think if I'd stayed any longer at your house I would've started crying for joy!! I'm so happy for you guys.

All in all, it was a great day and I think I'm most thankful to have had an evening with family. We don't seem to get that very often anymore!!
Thank you Mom, Dad, Noah, Caleb, Aunt Diane (LOL! hehe!!), Uncle Dan, Aunt Lucia, and Uncle Jay for making my birthday special!! :)
Also, don't miss the 4 other posts I did tonight below!

Senior Pictures!!

On Sunday we had Alyssa take my senior pictures!! It was alot of fun. Looking at them I think I'm just reminded to enjoy life. Learn, laugh, love. Life- it's not always easy. I've learned to love who God has made ME. Not who the world wants me to be. In order to love anybody I have to learn to love myself. Who I am inside- without the makeup and straightened hair. I feel a confidence in Christ that can't be found in anything else. With Him, my insecurities and fears are washed away. My black heart is turned into something beautiful. And the shrinking girl is given the strength to stand up and serve her Lord. OK. Got really off topic there. Anyway, here's my favorite ones:

Thank you Alyssa!! We love them!

Prayer Needed!!

Prayer warriors, let's get on our knees on behalf of this family!! Salomae came home this year from Ethiopia. Her health started deteriorating upon her arrival home and the suspected health problems ended up being much more serious than anticipated. Her spine is deteriorating and she's going in for surgery on Thursday.

Please pray:
- For the doctors hands as they operate on this sweet girl.
- For PEACE PEACE PEACE for parents, Salomae, and the 4 other children they have.
- That Salomae will have a miraculous recovery and that the surgery would be completely successful.
- That Salomae will have an understanding of what is happening and why. She's only been home for a few months and has already undergone so much medical treatment.

If you'd like to visit their blog hop on over and leave them an encouraging comment. I've been amazed sometimes at the power of a comment on someone's blog- even when you don't know the person!! http://notquitedoneadopting.blogspot.com/

Faithfully Forever

The music director at church has brought back a song from years ago that I have fallen in love with the past couple weeks.

The lyrics are:

All I have is what you give me
All I am is what you make me
Faithfully forever
Forever I will be
Thankful for each day you give me
Resting in the hands that saved me
Faithfully forever
Forever I will be
In awe of Calvary

Such a simple song yet so powerful. A simple prayer to the Father, expressing my heart's desire to be faithful forever, thankful forever.

Our Family

Thought I'd share a little project I finished this week. Last night at dinner I had everyone right down 1-2 things that they appreciated about the other people in our family. So that's where the "descriptions" come from. It was fun to make and another reminder about how blessed I am to have my family.

Note: I found this idea in a scrapbook magazine so I can't take the credit for the idea. Nice job whoever thought of this!! :)

I'm Back!!!! :)

I've returned from my little blogging break and am very excited to be back at it! I made a list of 6 posts I want to do so I'm on a roll here... until I get too tired.

It has been a great week. I've been very busy but feel incredibly blessed. The Lord has been so good to remind of His promises and the hope that He has for me. I feel free to be who He's made me to be and who He wants me to be.

So enjoy my posts as I catch up on my busy week!! :)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

A Few Moments

Taking a few moments to blog. I've been working my way down my to-do list tonight. Tommorow I have school in the morning, piano at 12:30, and then I'm meeting with a friend after that. Saturday i have a leadership team retreat all day and then our family friends are coming to visit and spend the night! It's been years since I've seen them so I'm really looking forward to catching up. They have a son my age who's also in the college search stage so we'll have alot in common this time.

A wonderfully wise woman at our school gave a talk to us once about apathy and giving 100%. She told us this quote that has stuck with me all of these years:

Trade in what is good for what is better;
and trade in what is better for what is best.

Last week our pastor talked about work and trying your hardest ALL THE TIME- not only when people are looking.

So it got me to thinking about what areas of my life do I settle for the average. What areas can I press on and pursue the best? No, of course I can't be perfect, but i don't have to settle for what is good. Sometimes I'll pray, "Lord, please help me to be a good friend/daughter/employee/etc." And the prayer kind of ends there. This week I've really been trying to work on striving for the highest. I hope that, in time, I will become a better friend, a better sister, a better daughter. I will never be the best (for only Jesus can take that place), but I hope that, by God's grace alone, my life will be a shining light of Christ and that I will rise above the low standards set by our culture.

Anyway... i think i just rambled on but maybe it made some sense!!! :)

Have a great weekend! God bless!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

While I'm Waiting

The perfect song for my life right now!! I am certainly waiting and trying to trust God through it all. I am determined NOT to waste this time of waiting to figure out what's going to happen next year. God can and will use us in any stage, any part of the journey. That's what life is, a journey, full of steep climbs, ruts in the road, treacherous passages, as well as meandering streams, quiet meadows, and hilltops of victory. How great is our God.

Thanks for sharing this one Mrs. Semlow! :)

Happy Tuesday!

Happy Tuesday blogging friends!

Some people have a knack for writing humorous blog posts. Several of the blogs I read leave me laughing. Somehow they can relive an ordinary day and make it hilarious. I can't do that. And it's probably not going to change. I can write serious poems but not funny blog posts. Hmm.. oh well. I'll just keep writing.

Eventually something exciting will happen that will actually be interesting to read about. Meanwhile, my life is basically consumed with school, more school, work, and church stuff. School is going very well so far. I officially despise chemistry (but that's the only class i really dislike). I'm SO thankful for my incredibly intelligent dad to help explain it to me. We've had some good laughs over my pathetic misunderstandings lol (right dad???) :) Health has been depressing the past few days. So far, I've watched 4 videos on domestic violence, abuse, and dating violence. When the video ends I'm just blah. What are you supposed to do after seeing such horrible situations? How sad it is when relationships that could be beautiful turn into horrific nightmares. God did not intend for a dating relationship, marriage, and family to function like that. I'm so thankful that there are still men who follow the Lord and love their wives and children well. Praise God that He has brought up Godly fathers to raise up Godly sons to lead the girls of my generation (in the coming years). If there's one thing I've learned, it's that relationships like that don't have to happen. In Christ's strength, I believe that we can grow up to have healthy, wonderful marriages. It's just sad to see all the people who get hurt everyday from the relationships/marriages that don't work out.

Monday night I started my new babysitting job. It's just every other week for two little boys. They are so cute. The 3 year old said the funniest things. I also realized again just how different boys are from girls!! Girls will sit with me and play for hours with dolls and a kitchen. NOT BOYS!!! We played with every toy in the room, moving back and forth and back and forth. We never played with something for longer than 2 minutes (except for when i pulled out the building blocks- they LOVED those and we played for about 20 minutes with those. Of course, we had to build towers and knock them down over and over again lol!)

Tonight I had girl's bible study. It was great, again. God has been so good to provide so many opportunities to dig into the Word. I'm so thankful.

Tommorow is See You at the Pole, and our church is hosting "Saw You At the Pole" (a pizza dinner, slideshow of pictures from the morning, praise, and prayer). It should be a good day.

Some scripture I read today really hit home:

"Many are the plans in a man's heart, but it is the Lord's purpose that prevails."
Proverbs 19:21

Good stuff! :)

Have a great night everybody!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Another boring post! :)

So since all of you are just dying to read another one of my dumb blog posts I will just have to satisfy your wish.

Fall is going by SOOO fast!! I cannot believe that September is nearly over. October is sure to go just as quickly. My schedule is filling up with college trips.... i have one free weekend left in October! Ahh!!

Speaking of college... I'm in limbo right now. We don't know what's going to happen next year. I think we're making progress on getting the necessary paperwork, though. I faxed the request form so we could get a transcript from LAST YEAR's grades. Forget about junior year grades! Let's just get the basics here! And we don't even know how long it will take for them to do it. Slightly frustrating. I do know that either way, I will graduate this year. The question is whether or not I can still go off to college next year. I'm REALLY hoping. But I have also come to a point of surrender with it. Yes it will be very disappointing after all this hard work to have to go to a jr. college for a whole year and no it's not AT ALL what i want, for many reasons. There will be tears if I don't go and it will be hard. But I have to focus on the ultimate plan, not just the immediate positives to graduating early. I know that the Lord will do what is best for my life (even if it doesn't seem like the best plan!).

I had a good, relaxing weekend. My laptop is back (yaay!) so I spent most of last night doing school/email/facebook while watching TV. It was nice. Yesterday afternoon Corinne and I went to paint pottery. Of course, I didn't bring my camara. I carry it around in my purse for weeks and never use it. The week I take it out I needed it! I made a plate (but I'll hang it on my wall). I hope it turns out..... :)

Tonight is first small groups at church!! I'm so excited. We have the best leaders EVER! It's going to be awesome.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Be Still

"Be still and know that I am God.."
Psalm 46:10a

For some reason that verse popped into my head today and I realized that I don't follow it very well. He's not joking when he says BE STILL!! I don't know about the rest of you but I'm always asking Him, "Ok God, what next? What do you want me to do now? What ministry, service? Who do you want me to go encourage?" And I think sometimes He's asking us to just stop. Stop rushing. Stop stressing. Just rest! So I did a little of that today and just soaked up His word. It was worth it! I have so much to learn. But I was glad to have a few moments of quiet with the Lord. Our culture needs to just take a break and be still once in awhile. Life is too precious to just let fly by! God has much to teach us if we'll turn our ear to Him.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Thinkin' (again... it's one of the many things I do each day!)

Thinking about Claudia today and wishing I could hop on a plane and take her into my arms again. My heart was just aching for her and for her adoptive family. I nearly cried. What would it be like to be thousands of miles away from this daughter you've never even met for 3 WHOLE YEARS?? You've lovingly gazed at her picture a million times but can't seem to get any closer. The ache in your heart would grow so big. I've had the incredible blessing of hearing her contagious laugh and vibrant smile. I've gotten to hug her small body and kiss her cheeks. But the parents who have invested their whole hearts into this little girl and the journey of bring her home to her family haven't gotten this privelege. I was so sad for them today.

And i was also thinking about this sweet girl and the INCREDIBLE impact she's had on my life. Some of it's hard to explain because you have to know my heart and all of my dreams that I held onto before I went to Guatemala. Those two visits to Guatemala were monumentous in my walk with Christ. I captured His vision for the orphans while I was there, and I joined in the burden of taking care of these precious children. I'll never forget arriving at the orphanage. I stepped out our rental car and could immediately hear babies crying. It was agony not to run inside and pick them up, wipe their tears away, and show them all the love I had stored inside my heart all of those years. I usually tried to settle one down and move onto the next, giving as many babies attention as I possibly could each day. But sometimes, I would just sit and rock one for a long while. For some of them, that was the only time they would totally relax. Then, they would lay their head on your shoulder and sleep. Such precious moments. Oh my... I better stop or I will keep writing and start crying.

Here's some of my fave pics. and a video:

Me and my sweet girl

My "papa" and Claudia. She called him "el doctor"

This cutie was probably one of my favorite babies. She LOVED LOVED LOVED being held and you couldn't put her down. So I would usually end up picking up another one because I couldn't monopolize her but couldn't stand to hear her cry. She was the last baby that I held when I left in August. As the tears spilled down her cheeks when I put her back in her crib I cried right along with her...

Claudia, Jesus has His hand on you. You're blessed to be in a safe orphanage with loving "mommas" to take care of you. I would adopt you in a second if I could. God gave you and I a special bond and my heart soared when you recognized me after 5 months when I came back to Guatemala last August. You asked about "el doctor papa" and if he was going to come see you too. I miss you, sweet girl. I hope that someday i can come to see you walk in with your forever family from the airplane.... but that may not be God's plan. Whatever it is, may He bless you and keep you. You'll always have a special place in my heart.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Thomas Bernardo

Our pastor talked about this man named Thomas Bernardo at church on Sunday. I've been thinking about him ever since and decided to do some research on him tonight.

Basically, this young man moved from Dublin to London to study medicine in 1866. He hoped to become a medical missionary in China. While in London, he heard of an effort to bring schooling to impoverished boys. He fell in love with these street children who had no families and no home. He began taking in some of them, but could only fit so many of them in his small apartment. A little boy called "Carrots" for his fiery red hair, pleaded with Dr. Bernardo to let him come in. But Dr. Bernardo couldn't take anymore, and he had to turn Carrots away. Awhile after, one of the boys led Dr. Bernardo to a small nook in the buildings. When Dr. Bernardo pulled back the wood, he found two boys lying very still- one dead and one alive. In horror, he realized that the dead one was Carrots. He had died from exhaustion, hunger, and exposure. Dr. Bernardo turned no child away after that. He raised money to start a home for the children and on it he prominently placed a sign that said, "No destitute child ever refused admission- open all night." In the coming years, he started a program that brought boys to Canada to work, and in the end he rescued thousands of boys with his efforts.

I didn't know whether I should smile or cry after Pastor finished telling the story. I have SO MUCH respect for this man. He dedicated his life to giving these kids a better life. That is so awesome. I love seeing ordinary people do BIG things with their lives. This man might not have changed the entire world, but he changed the world for those 30,000 kids. So it made me wonder what God has for me. I want to change kids' lives like Dr. Bernardo did. He's such an inspiration. My youth pastor's wife and I were talking on Sunday about the orphans and how it's such an overwhelming crisis. They've adopted two children but she said, "What about the rest?" Honestly, I don't know. I'm so thankful for the lists of families who are adopting. You guys are awesome. But there's still such a need. And very few of us can drop what we're doing, hop on a plane, and go rescue children (though I SOOOO wish I could!). But I believe that together, if the body of Christ would unite, we can conquer this together. I'm praying so hard for my generation. In the next 10 years many of us will hopefully be married and thinking about starting families. I pray that we will save our money well, have strong marriages, and be willing to surrender to the work God calls us to. I pray that adoption will be heavy on the hearts of many and that numerous children get to come home to their forever families. All it takes is a nudge from God..... the question is.... will we listen??

Tuesday Thoughts...

That's probably the most uncreative title ever. Oh well.

We had girls bible study again tonight. I've so enjoyed digging deeper into the Word with these girls. We're studying Romans right now and so far we've discovered a strong theme running through the first couple of chapters that we've looked at. Our observations kept turning back to God's grace. And it's true!! Nearly everything in the Bible leads back to His grace. That's the essence of the gospel. I long to understand the mystery of His grace more fully. I'm not really sure that we, who live on a sinful earth, can even understand the full extent of it.

Tonight we read through Romans 2 and part of 3. I felt that God was pressing on my heart the reminder that without Him my life is NOTHING. So often I think things like, "Look how far I've come!! Last year I wouldn't have done this (or something to that effect)." But it wasn't me!! To Him be the glory that I become even minutely more Godly. No positive changes in my life were without Christ working in and through me. He's the one that works on the heart, softens it, molds it, encourages. Any work in our lives is totally Him. We wouldn't be the people we are today without Jesus.

Bye-bye Laptop!!

I sent my laptop in today to be repaired. The wireless internet stopped working the day I started school. This was so convenient considering that all of my school is on the internet!! So for the past week it's been plugged into the hard wire. This works but I can't take it up to my room and work on school, which I need to do when my brothers are around and being loud! It's impossible to focus on a video about the chemical properties of oxygen when you have Pillar blaring from the computer next to you and wrestling going on behind you. I will be very thankful when the laptop makes its return home. It could be a few weeks so until then I'm camped out at my parent's computer. So I don't know how much blogging I'll be doing.
I'm very excited for Friday to come because I'm going to go shadow one of our friends who teaches kindergarten in one of the public schools here. She's supposedly an incredible teacher so I'm looking forward to watching her in action!
Nothing else to report really. I'm loving school and learning alot, which is great. I wish we had done this last year. Oh well, woulda' coulda' shoulda'. Doesn't make a difference because you can't rewind in life!!! Just keep moving forward and work with what you've got.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Need to use more words!

So I came up with about 6 different blog posts in my head today. This was not one of them, but that's okay!! They say that women speak around 20,000 words a day. I have not gotten all of my words in today so my blog will have to suffice. I just finished watching a thrilling video all about allergies, in which they involved this cheesy love story where the girl is allergic to her boyfriend's dog. Oh, and she came from England to visit him and got stung by a wasp- twice. She had to go to the hospital the second time and then while she was lying in the hospital bed he declared his love to her. Aren't you jealous you didn't get to see it?!!! OK.. so maybe it wasn't that great.

I'm going to backtrack to the weekend since I was too busy to even blog! It was an awesome weekend. I spent time with friends, took my ACT, and then yesterday our church had our annual fall picnic. Thanks to the endless rain, we held it inside. It actually worked out well. When I first arrived I was the only teenager there and I'd decided that I was leaving as soon as my shift at the "duck pond" game was over. But slowly, more people began coming and I soon busied myself with helping out with other games and talking with the adults. When I walked into the room with my food at dinnertime I had three little girls come and say, "Miss Molly!! You have to come sit with us!!!" How could i resist? They were too cute. So I sat with four kindergarten and first grade girls that giggled the entire time. After dinner, I got to hold a little baby so his parents could finish dinner. I love holding babies. My ACT went well, I think. I'm definitely going to take it again next month. Hopefully I will gauge my time a little better and not have to guess on the last few of the Science portion. Anyway, I'm pretty sure I didn't get what I wanted but I know I didn't do terrible either!!

Well.... I guess that's all for now. Sorry for the boring post. Blogging just isn't the same as talking to a real person. So I think I will go back to reading my literature book. This post is so random and boring! I'm sorry! :)

Friday, September 12, 2008

Riding along...

I was driving home from piano today and the Lord gave me this poem. Thought I'd share it with you. Before i started formulating the poem I'd been thinking about the constant struggle of doing a quiet time. I've done horribly this week and have always found excuses for not doing it. As I prayed and thought about it, I was overcome in awe at how God keeps taking me back. How everyday, He finds the grace and love to forgive me. Day after day without fail!!! Not only does He respond when I seek, but He pursues me. He shows me scripture to encourage me, shows me people I can look up to, shows me thins that touch my heart and remind me of His plan. Only our God would do that!! Only our God would forgive us and on top of that lavish us with blessings!! I'm humbled that He would show such mercy to me. i'm having the spacing issue again with the poem. Sorry.

Pursued by My Savior

You keep runnin after me
I'm so close, yet so far away.
You keep calling me to be
a girl that's different from today.

You pursue me,
with your never-ending love.
You pull me closer
you bless me from above.

I just can't understand sometimes
Why you bring me back.
With all my sin, my depravity,
all the holiness I lack.
Yet you love me,
like no earthly person could
You call me daughter,
I was bought with your son's blood.
You consume me,
with joy, peace, and rest.
You lavish on me,
a grace and mercy I can't test.
You adopt me,
this thought just makes me cry.
Yes, Lord, you love us.
From now until we die.
Molly Mitchell

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Thoughtful Thursday

Instead of Thankful Thursday it's going to be Thoughtful Thursday!!

For starters, today was the first day of real school for me! Yaay! To re-cap, it's an accredited, Christian, online school. It's so different than last year's program!! I LOVE it! It's very structured (which I love), very flexible, and I love what I'm learning. It feels so good to be back into a routine and to be learning again. I really want to try my very best this year and put forth 100% effort. I really do feel like this program is a gift from God. However, the ChemLab is probably the most ridiculous program ever. It's too confusing for my little brain!! And if anybody ever wants a good laugh just come over and I'll show you some of my videos. I was sitting by myself laughing while watching them. Oh.... I love this school. It's going to be GREAT! :)

God has kept me on my toes this past month and I finally realized today why He's been teaching me the things He has. It was just a crazy month with the unsureness about school, graduating, college, etc. This whole time He has not only been teaching me to trust but showing me that my life is not my own. I've had my life planned out for forever. I knew exactly what kind of college I wanted, what kind of room mate, what I wanted to do for a living, when I wanted to get married, etc. And I really do think that in my heart I have held onto and desired "my plan" more than God's will. Sure I pray, "If this is in your will, please..." but deep down I'm holding onto my "life plan" with both hands. I just couldn't let it go. Couldn't give it over to God and surrender these dreams.

So He's had to shake things up in my life to get my attention. He longs for me to let go and rest. The reason He doesn't show us our future is so that we have to trust in Him all the more!! But it's painful. By surrendering I'm saying that I can be content in the life that He has for me. I want that life! More than I can say. But I just realized today that there's that part of me that just can't let go. I'm not really sure that any human can completely just sit and let God take the wheel but He's shown me that in my heart i need to clear some of that out. The future I long for is taking my focus off of Him and the beautiful story He's writing. It seems to be an ongoing process. As Christians, we're constantly havingI'm not sure anything I wrote made sense... :) But that's what I've been working through. Giving all of me to Him! So today whenever something didn't go the way I thought they should, or something started to look like our plans might not work I just stopped, took a breath, and prayed, acknowleding that our God is all-powerful and that if this is His will then I will take it and trust Him. Life is a journey. It's not all sunshine and flowers. There's tough stuff. But why live my life focused on anything but Him? Life's hard enough as it is (and really, my issues are minute compared to some!!)!! He's here to hold me, lavishing me with grace and love like no other!! How blessed am I to be a daughter of Him. Praise God.

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

Jeremiah 29:11 (i know I talk about this verse alot. Sorry. I'm just kinda' obsessed with it right now!! lol!!)

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


Tonight I went to a baby shower for a couple in our church, Tyler and Michelle. They are both really sweet and it seems like yesterday that I attended their wedding shower! Halfway through the shower, right before Michelle started opening gifts, they said that they had a "surprise" for her. In walked Tyler, absolutely BEAMING! I think my favorite part of the whole night was watching this daddy-to-be smile non-stop and lovingly gaze at his wife. It was so sweet. It made me smile to see a couple like that who, through Jesus, have formed a beautiful Christ-centered marriage, and they are now ready to raise up a little one! How cool is that?!! As I sat and watched them I couldn't help but think that this is what marriage is supposed to look like. I'm so thankful that God has put so many Godly couples in my life for me to watch! Someday hopefully I'll be able to put it into practice! :)

It was a nice thought

I woke up early this morning hoping that I would come down to my computer and find that MorningStar started school on today instead of tommorow. They didn't. So it's 8:30 and I've already eaten breakfast and taken Chloe on a 45-minute walk. By now, I've just learned to go with the flow!! If plans get twisted, just go with it. God is in control and I don't want to be anywhere but where he wants me. So tommorow I will start school. For serious. Today was just not the day. It was a nice thought though!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


Hello everybody!! I hope you are having a great night. It has been beautiful here today!! I'm loving this fall weather.

So today.... i spent the morning doing Spanish homework, studying for the ACT, and walking Chloe. After lunch I got in my scrubs and went to Target to get a baby gift, causing me to spend 35 minutes in the store getting distracted by cute baby stuff and eyeshadow colors I'd like to experiment with (even though my spending budget was zero!). So that left me running into the post office to ship my two packages before going to work. It's always interesting going out into public in my scrubs. People always look at medical personnel wearing scrubs in public anyway. Then when they look at me a little more closely they realize, "hmm... that is a teenager wearing scrubs. Something isn't right with this!!" Even better are the looks I get from our patients. People have said the funniest things to me!!

Tonight we had our first girl's bible study. There were just three of us but we had some really good discussion and it was so great to dig into the Word a little deeper. I'm hoping to blog a little about what God impressed on me during that time but i have to finish my Spanish homework and practice piano. I have the biggest ice cream craving right now. I need to convince my parents to go for ice cream tonight!!

Here's some boring pics from my day. Sorry this is such a random post. I'm in a chatty mood but you can only go so far with a keyboard! :)

In my scrubs before work!

Some Quiet Moments...

I had a relaxed evening last night and I'm really thankful!! I had NOTHING going on after work so I spent most of the time in the basement working on my um... "secret project." (more on that later).

That was probably the last night that I will have nothing to do. My regular school will be starting tommorow or the next day (YAAAY!!! Finally!!) and once it does I will be working on that in order to get through it quickly!! I've never been so motivated to accomplish anything! I've been wanting school to start since May. I'm so ready to tackle this and I'm excited to start!

This morning I think I'm going to go on a long walk with Chloe and run some errands. Oh, and study for my ACT which is in FOUR days!! I'm also shipping out two orders today for our adoption business which is very exciting.

Pretty boring post but that's what's going on in my life!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

It's gonna be a good week (i hope!)

It's been another great Sunday. I think Sundays are probably the best day of the week (except for Saturdays sometimes). I had church this morning and we taught our first sunday school class. It went very well and I know i'm going to really enjoy it! Then some of us went for lunch at Fazoli's (Uncle Dan, I ate a breadstick for you! lol lol hehe). And I came home and did stuff around the house for awhile. Finally, we went to youth group! It was the first one of the year and it went well, including worship.

School starts either Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday. I CAN'T WAIT!! Seriously.

And my ACT is on Saturday. Oh boy.... :) The biggest test in my life is about to happen in 6 days. Ahhh!!!

Some may think this picture is weird. Some might think it's cute. Some might think it's creative. I think that I like it. :)

Don't miss my post below as well. I put both of them up today.

True Beauty

Our pastor spoke about wives and husbands today at church. It was a very good sermon, in my opinoin. Of course, I have zero experience in marriage (or dating for that matter!) but it sounded good to me. And, to my surprise, when he talked about how a wife thrives on the love, praise and security a husband should give, I totally understood what he was saying and could identify with that in my own heart. And when he talked about how a wife should treat her husband with respect and submit to him I realized alot of it can be put into practice with my relationship with my dad. Anyway, our opening scripture was found in 1 Peter.

"..... they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, when they see the purity and reverence of your lives. Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is great worth in God's sight. For this is the way the holy women of the past who put their hope in God used to make themselves beautiful."
1 Peter 3:1b-5b

I guess I'd never paid attention to these verses before! But when I read them this morning they ministered to my heart. Our culture focuses SO MUCH on things that will make us look more beautiful, more appealing. And we listen!! We go and buy the latest trends, get the newest makeup, have our hair styled the new way. I'm not saying this is wrong. However, speaking for myself, I forget that it's not all about how I look, it's about what's inside. I wouldn't want someone to like me just because of my appearance anyway. Jesus loves me because of who I am on the inside. He looks at me when I wake up in the morning with dark eyes, disheveled hair, and baggy pajamas and he says, "You are beautiful! I love you because of your heart not for your appearance."

It says in the last verse that "this is how the holy women of the past who put their hope in God used to make themselves beautiful." They focused on their attitude, their spirit, their hearts. They trusted that God would bring them a husband who would look past their faces and into their hearts. Why can't I do that? Is it pride? Am I too scared that I will be rejected by people if my outward appearance isn't beautiful enough? Why do we spend more time trying to impress the people of this world than we do on our hearts? The One who has shown the greatest love deserves our attention, not the mirror!! Our inner beauty is of great worth to God and I think I need to focus a little more on that. I want to be the wife someday who has the "unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit," "noble character (proverbs 12)," "a wife who is hardworking, compassionate, has strength and dignity, full of laughter, wise with faithful instruction on the tongue, and who fears the Lord." (majorly summarized Proverbs 31:10-31)

Khalil Gibran, (1883 - 1931)
Beauty is not in the face;
beauty is a light in the heart.

Ivan Panin
For every beauty there is an eye somewhere to see it.
For every truth there is an ear somewhere to hear it.
For every love there is a heart somewhere to receive it.

Sophia Loren
Beauty is how you feel inside,
and it reflects in your eyes.
It is not something physical.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

A Fantabulous Saturday :)

Today was a great day!

  • First of all, it is my FAVORITE weather right now. Cool enough to wear jeans but not hot. It's perfect fall weather.

  • My dad took my brothers to an out of town football game so they were gone for the day. That left my mom and I to have a girls day! :) Last night, I moved my fall/winter clothes up to my closet. I quickly realized that I didn't have that many (and the ones I did have were all basically brown and blue- I was obsessed with those colors last year apparently)!! So my mom and I spent the afternoon at the mall shopping. I found some really good deals and brought home some cute stuff! It's kind of fun to see how far you can stretch money if you spend wisely. And it's always fun to have some new clothes! Before we left the mall I'd already decided what I was going to wear to church tommorow!

  • Spencer (who's teaching with me) and I organized all of the Sunday School stuff and planned our lesson for tommorow! It'll be the first class and I'm excited to see how it goes!!

  • We've been pet-sitting our neighbor's dog, Rocket, during the day and Chloe doesn't like it one bit!! She's incredibly jealous of the attention we give Rocket and she refuses to play with her like she does the other dog we've had at our house. She has been hiding under things. When I'm at my desk (see below picture) she sits under it. She's NEVER done this before. And when I practiced piano today she scooted behind the keyboard stand. She is so pathetic. I think we've spoiled her rotten! :)

Chloe hiding


Friday, September 5, 2008

Thank you

Just wanted to say a sincere thank you for all of the comments put on this blog the past year. My prayer has always been that the writing that I do on here will be pleasing to God, a blessing to others, and a way of spurring others on in our call to care for the orphans. In turn, I have been blessed immensely!!!

God just has a way of doing that!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Rescue Me

Right at this moment, there are 143 million children who need to be rescued. They have no parents and their futures hold nothing but hopeless dark years of struggle.

Today I listened to a radio broadcast by Focus on the Family. An adoptive family (thanks Mrs. Arnold!!) had posted the link on their blog. They interviewed R.B. Mitchell, a great Christian man who was abandoned at an orphanage when he was 3. He summarized his heart-breaking story in the interview and now I'm eager to read his book, Castaway Kid. By God's grace, several men entered Mr. Mitchell's life after he left the orphanage, and he came to Christ.

When it ended, I wasn't sure whether to be happy or sad. While it was encouraging to hear the story of a man who found hope at the end of a terrible childhood, it was so depressing to think that there are millions of children who experience the same pain of abandonment and the deep ache of loneliness everyday. Millions of children who ask, "What's wrong with me? Why doesn't anybody love me?" This absolutely breaks my heart. My heart literally aches for these kids. I don't know any other way to describe it. And right here in our own country there's half a million foster care kids. PEOPLE! THIS IS NOT OK!! But i have NO easy solution. There isn't one. The solution will take MUCH MUCH MUCH sacrifice, self-denial, and even pain on our part. It's so tough.

A sunday school teacher I had for a few weeks this summer always ended his lessons with So what? So what now? I've been praying through that question all day. I've been presented with statistics and reminded of the burden God has placed on my heart. But what am I going to do about it? I'll let you know when I figure it out! lol. Oh wait! I know... get married and adopt! Just kidding.

I challenge you to listen to the broadcast and go onto this guy's website. I'm going to be reading his book in the next few months. After i read the other books in my stack! The broadcast is 50 minutes long but it has probably 10 minutes of "commercial breaks" which I fast-forwarded. I blasted it on my computer and cleaned my room while listening. So be creative and fit it into your schedule! May the Lord encourage you through it and stretch you farther than before. Let's come together to fulfill this great call to care for these precious kids! They are calling for us to rescue them! Oh how I long to go and wrap them in my arms and tell them the great truth that Jesus loves them. I wish I could tell them everything's going to be alright. But I can't. Not now. I wait in anticipation for the day that I tell my own sweet child that he/she is my child forever....

Here's the links:


R.B. MITCHELL'S website:

Thankful Thursday

I'm sorry this is so hard to read. It won't let me double space! :P
8 Give thanks to the LORD, call on his name;
make known among the nations what he has done.
9 Sing to him, sing praise to him;
tell of all his wonderful acts.
10 Glory in his holy name;
let the hearts of those who seek the LORD rejoice.
11 Look to the LORD and his strength;
seek his face always.
12 Remember the wonders he has done,
his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced,
13 O descendants of Israel his servant,
O sons of Jacob, his chosen ones.
14 He is the LORD our God;
his judgments are in all the earth.
15 He remembers [b] his covenant forever,
the word he commanded, for a thousand generations,
16 the covenant he made with Abraham,
the oath he swore to Isaac.
17 He confirmed it to Jacob as a decree,
to Israel as an everlasting covenant:
18 "To you I will give the land of Canaan
as the portion you will inherit."
19 When they were but few in number,
few indeed, and strangers in it,
20 they [c] wandered from nation to nation,
from one kingdom to another.
21 He allowed no man to oppress them;
for their sake he rebuked kings:
22 "Do not touch my anointed ones;
do my prophets no harm."
23 Sing to the LORD, all the earth;
proclaim his salvation day after day.
24 Declare his glory among the nations,
his marvelous deeds among all peoples.
25 For great is the LORD and most worthy of praise;
he is to be feared above all gods.
26 For all the gods of the nations are idols,
but the LORD made the heavens.
27 Splendor and majesty are before him;
strength and joy in his dwelling place.
28 Ascribe to the LORD, O families of nations,
ascribe to the LORD glory and strength,
29 ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name.
Bring an offering and come before him;
worship the LORD in the splendor of his [d] holiness.
30 Tremble before him, all the earth!
The world is firmly established; it cannot be moved.
31 Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad;
let them say among the nations, "The LORD reigns!"
32 Let the sea resound, and all that is in it;
let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them!
33 Then the trees of the forest will sing,
they will sing for joy before the LORD,
for he comes to judge the earth.
34 Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good;
his love endures forever.
35 Cry out, "Save us, O God our Savior;
gather us and deliver us from the nations,
that we may give thanks to your holy name,
that we may glory in your praise."
36 Praise be to the LORD, the God of Israel,
from everlasting to everlasting.
Then all the people said "Amen" and "Praise the LORD."
1 Chronicles 16:8-36
I hope you found this scripture as encouraging as I did!! I started italicizing "important/meaningful" phrases but I soon realized that i was italicizing the ENTIRE passage!!
My thankful Thursday list could be quite long but I've narrowed it down to a few things:
1. Wonderful wisdom from Christians God has placed in my life. My parents and I are really digging into the whole college search adventure! I spent the majority of last night on the computer looking at college websites, comparing tuition, and putting it all into a spreadsheet. So this morning I was feeling a little overwhelmed with the whole thing. I went into work today and had a long conversation with one of my coworkers. I left feeling so much more confident and encouraged in this journey!! So I'm thankful for that opportunity He gave us to chat for awhile.
2. This is kind of broad but I'm just so thankful for the life that I have. I listened to this great radio broadcast from focus on the family today and was reminded of how incredibly blessed I am to have grown up in a Christian home, with two parents (both of whom are loving and dedicated to our family), and I've never been without a roof over my head, clothes, or food. It seems simple, but far too many people are without those basics.
3. Thankful for the love that God gives us. He's so patient and faithful and He is good. He is good in the trials and in the joys!! :)

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Slowly Learning!!

So far, this school year has been completely different than I EVER thought it would be. I didn't think that I would have to wait nearly 3 weeks to start my actual classes. I didn't think I'd be painting my room and the kitchen- I thought I'd be putting all of my efforts into school! I've been motivated to graduate a year early for a long time. And finally, this year, the opportunity arrived! So my determination and readiness to work hard was in full gear. But there is one problem.... there's nothing to work on because school hasn't started!! So I managed to keep myself busy the last two weeks but today I was really struggling. As I rolled the walls of our kitchen with fresh paint I was "wrestling" with God. "Lord, why can't I just start? Why do I have to waste these three weeks? I could have done three weeks of lessons and been that much closer to being done with high school! Did we make a mistake? Am I supposed to be somewhere else other than here? I really thought that this was the path you wanted me on... but maybe it's not. I want nothing more to be in your will. Please show me why this isn't working." Well, you get the picture. I was doubting and fearing. I was doubting whether or not this was God's plan and I was scared of failing or disappointing Him.

So anyway, I painted for awhile and stopped for lunch. While eating, I realized that this is His plan. I just didn't think it was because it wasn't how I envisioned it. Why was I worrying? This was how God had intended it to be- so that I could learn patience and trust. Our God is such a patient Father. I'm in awe of how He hasn't given up on me yet! He just keeps bringing me back into His arms and showing me His love and grace.

So while I haven't learned like I thought I would the past few weeks, God has certainly been teaching me. He has made my heart free of the concern that was there and I can rest His arms because i can trust Him! He has a plan for me. And these weeks of waiting were just a part of the story He's writing.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Labor Day Weekend!!

We had a fantastic Labor Day weekend. Yesterday we took off for an overnight at my aunt and uncle's house. It was our first time spending the night in their new home and seeing it all put together with furniture and the finished touches. We had LOTS LOTS LOTS of laughs. I hadn't laughed that much since New York probably. We had good food and fun fellowship. Oh, and polar swimming in their pool. The boys were totally comfortable but my swims never lasted for more than 5 minutes before I had to get out and lay in the sun to warm up! :)
P.S. Aunt Diane, please give us a call whenever you need help locating mysterious beeping. We will jump from the couch IMMEDIATELY to go and help you! I'm laughing as I type this and I'm not kidding. The boys are looking at me funny and asking why I'm laughing out loud! We are NOT going to let you live that one down!
Enjoy the pics!! Someone just told me recently that the slideshows don't work, so I'm putting pics up individually.
Zzzzz... hehe!
Mom helping Aun Diane decorate their new house!
Not sure why I uploaded this one...

This picture makes me smile! :)

Another nap, Uncle Dan?!
TRYING to throw Noah into the pool. but we weren't strong enough!! lol!
Looking like a 9 year old with no makeup and having done nothing to my hair... blah!
LOVE this type of pic. I wish the other brother was in it.

Rummy..... our new favorite game!

Helping Aunt Diane organize her new kitchen!!! My specialty! Just kidding lol!

Everybody have a GREAT week!! :) I thought I was starting my online stuff tommorow but it doesn't start till FRIDAY! I'm serious, I don't think I can wait another 3 days to start. It's depressing to not have anything to do that I feel is productive. If I feel useless it's not a good thing! lol! Ughh... I will have to find something to occupy my time. I'm so motivated to start my school but I can't! So frustrating!