Thursday, July 27, 2006

When I was little

We worry about what a child will become tomorrow, yet we forget that he is someone today. ~Stacia Tauscher

You can learn many things from children. How much patience you have, for instance. ~Franklin P. Jones

A child can ask questions that a wise man cannot answer. ~Author Unknown

There was never a child so lovely but his mother was glad to get him to sleep. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

There's nothing that can help you understand your beliefs more than trying to explain them to an inquisitive child. ~Frank A. Clark

Anyone who thinks the art of conversation is dead ought to tell a child to go to bed. ~Robert Gallagher

There are no seven wonders of the world in the eyes of a child. There are seven million. ~Walt Streightiff

Monday, July 24, 2006

Top Ten Tuesday 19

I went to Les Mis this weekend in St. Louis, and on the car ride there, we played "Would You Rather..." My Top Ten is going to be in "Would You Rather" style, so pick what you would rather do...

Would you Rather...

1. dive into a giant bowl of peanutbutter and jelly holding pieces of bread to be pictured on the cover of a magazine

2. dye your hair a different color a day for a week

3. eat a whole pack of popcorn flavored jelly bellys a day for a month

4. take a paper-route job delivering papers at 5 a.m. every morning, and keep it for at least 3 months

5. go swimming in the baby pool with floaties on all afternoon like nothing is wrong for a week

6. take a course in html coding for 6 weeks

7. watch the whole first season of Gilmore Girls

8. wear maple syrup flavored deodorant until it ran out

9. take the lead role in the play "Beauty and the Beast"

10. train to run a half-marathon

Let's see where you guys all fit into the category of adventure via randomness. Have fun! Love you all.


Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Wednesday's Wisdom 2

As I would expect, this past week has flown by, and it is already Wednesday again. Is it not interesting how quickly time goes when you stay busy? It's time for another edition of Wednesday's Wisdom.

Proverbs 4:23...

"Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life."

In order to stay alive, you must have a brain. However, even if your brain stopped functioning correctly and you were a "vegetable," as long as your heart was still pumping blood throughout your body, you could stay alive. You could. But the second your heart stops it's beating, you are dead. This is one way of seeing it as the "wellspring of life."

Another road I like to go down is one in which specifies each of our hearts as entities all their own; we say that no two snowflakes are the same, and if I may, I'd like to say that no two hearts are the same. Sure- they all have the same function. But so do our brains, yet look how differing our personalities can be.

We all have different wants, different needs, different desires. A lot of our natural, human desires stem from our heart- the essence of who we are. However, Who does our heart belong to? Who is the keeper of our heart? Who knows our wants, needs, and desires, and so desperately wants to give them to us? Jesus. Let's not forget that.

Perhaps this is why Proverbs says, "ABOVE ALL ELSE, guard your heart." What does "guard" mean? If I said to you, "Name, would you please guard my plate of food?" Would you let someone eat it? Would you let someone throw it away? Would you let someone indulge in it? I would hope not. You would do the exact opposite- you would protect it from harm, keep it from damage, and make sure no one took it. That is what we should be doing with our hearts.

It's easier said than done. When we look to apply this concept to our life, there are so many different avenues to go down, but let's take the common one of the heart: desires. There are so many different desires of our heart, and it isn't always simple to sort them out and continue down the path of righteousness at the same time. A lot of times, our desires don't always match up with what is in the Word, because we are human beings, and the Bible also says that the ways of the heart are wicked. As Christians, our job becomes an effort to counteract this natural tendency... but we find that over time, as we work to align our lives with God's way, our wants, needs, and desires amazingly start to match up to what He wants for us.

In a more general sense, not all desires that come from our heart are necessarily wicked or evil. However, it is important to be discerning and remember the concept of "guarding" so that our heart doesn't allow us to become deceived and we end up twisted and hurt. Another trick of the heart occurs when we allow our heart to rule our lives instead of remembering that we have a brain that can think with a soul that needs God, and somehow our number one consultant gets put on the backburner behind "how we feel." Feelings, desires, wants.... these aren't bad things. We just need to remember to allow God to be the leader, and we need to follow the feelings, desires, and wants that further Christ's kingdom and stores us treasures up in Heaven rather than the other way around.

If we can succesfully master this concept, we can then GUARD our hearts.

Today's Application: Pick an area in your life where you know that your heart is the most unguarded. Ask God to take this area and give it to Him- don't carry around burdens you weren't intended to bear. Christ is there to help you as you guard your heart. One thing I have found is that in order to guard my heart and keep it guarded, I have to decide that God is in control and that my plans may not be the ones that come through. If God is in control, we are surrended to His will, and therefore, our heart is guarded becasue we don't allow ourselves to jump into a situation full of expectations that may be completely selfish and wrong.

This was a long one... sorry, all. If you figure out a way to make a "short" deovtion out of the subject of "guarding your heart," though, let me know. It's a great topic! I hope you all have a most excellent Wednesday. Love you all!


Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Wednesday's Wisdom

I am happy to announce the newest section in my blog called "Wednesday's Wisdom." Before you know it, each day of the week will have it's own title. You just wait. :) Anyway, each Wednesday (or a little before, as I may need to plan ahead for scheduling purposes) I will cite a verse from the Proverbs and then a short little commentary to follow up. I will only post one verse, because I personally feel that only one is necessary. Every time I read from the Proverbs, I am amazed again and again at how each verse is like a mountain of wisdom all its own; if we just took one verse a day and tried to live by it, we would be doing pretty good. Proverbs is packed.

Wednesday's Wisdom 1

"A fool shows his annoyance at once, but a prudent man overlooks an insult."
-Proverbs 12:16

We are often insulted, and even more often, we are annoyed. I doubt a day goes by when you aren't annoyed at something... the car going 10 mph below on the interstate, your classmate's snide remarks, or the slow check-out clerk. How do you react to these instances?

I know how I react. I get annoyed. It's alright to get annoyed- we often can't control the onset of some feelings. However, what do we do with the "annoyance?" Do we let it pour out into a pointed look and shake of the head as we pass the slow car on the interstate? Do we turn around in class and make an equally snide remark back to our classmate? Do we let the annoyance become known as we glare at the check-out clerk?

Most of us probably don't go so far, but maybe some days, we do. Some days, it is hard to control how far we let our "annoyances" or "insults" take us. I believe that a very important truth comes out of this: We need to let God guide our minds and hearts, and not let our feelings rule us instead. It is easy to let anger, annoyance, bitter, rage, sadness, and even good feelings overtake us in a way that leads us blindly into a world of trouble. The simple solution is to hand the reigns to God, each and every day, and not only daily, but situationally... so that His presence can be there to calm us and we are not so quick to show our annoyance or retaliate in anger.

Application for today: Let God lead you today everywhere. Don't just ask God for help in the morning and then thank Him tonight. Remember that He is there always, and acknowledge that. By talking to Him continually, your attitude will be clear, and situations that may have been "annoying" may not be such a big deal anymore.

I love you all! T

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Top Ten Tuesday 18

I am going to post an early Top Ten of some of the photos that I took in Arizona and edited a bit. Vote for your favorite.

1. Stop Wining

2. Curly Green

3. Through the Window

4. RYG

5. The Walking Sisters

6. Pool Balls

7. Peeking Pink

8. The Van with Something to Say

9. Coke

10. Night Lights

Have an excellent Fourth! I love you all! T

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Final Days of the Western Expedition Featuring Photo Gallery

Days 6-9 of the Western Expedition


Well, I don’t really want to bore you with details of this day… because basically, it was our “shopping” day. ☺ Come on- a vacation with a bunch of girls… it’s to be expected. Anyway, we did meet my cousin, Stef, and her 2 daughters for lunch at Le Madeline’s.

As if the day wasn’t centered enough around being a girl, we had “girl’s night” at my aunt’s house (where we were staying), and all of my girl cousins came over to enjoy an evening of fun. We sat around, talked, and laughed the evening away.


We all awoke early to journey up to Oak Creek. Some of you who are aware of current events may have heard that there have been severe fires around the Sedona/Oak Creek Canyon area. The fire had potential to go as far as Slide Rock in Sedona, and if the firemen were not going to be able to contain it, they were just going to let it keep burning… which meant our cabin in the mountains built by my Grandpa which held so many memories would be lost forever. By God’s grace, the fire was contained, the firemen did an excellent job, and although many parts are still burning (as we were able to see on our drive there and back), our Junipine cabin is safe and sound.

We enjoyed a day of relaxation up in Oak Creek… God’s beautiful creation and mighty works are displayed so clearly as you take in the breathtaking features that paint such an amazing picture to enjoy.


After waking up to a beautiful Oak Creek and enjoying it for most of the morning, we got in the car and took a detour to Jerome. What is Jerome? It is a ghost town located high, high up in a mountain. Most of the buildings/homes there are abandoned and/or broken down, the sidewalks are uneven and cracked, and there are 3 levels of city blocks situated on one-way roads to walk through. The city has a ton of character because of its condition, and a lot of small little shops and diners have moved there to do business. A horse and carriage rides up and down the streets, and people (mainly tourists) walk in and out of the shops sprinkled throughout. Such a ghost town like Jerome was pleasant to visit, and was a joy for getting some great photography.

We caught a cheese crisp at Julio G’s on the way home, and finished the night off relaxing around the house.


Sniff*Sniff- the last day to enjoy ourselves in the sun. We went to breakfast, caught a 40% off sale, made some chocolate chip cookie dough, and then headed out to the sun. A couple of my cousins and their kids came over for the day, and we enjoyed vegging out, visiting, and then ate a dinner of brats and hot dogs that night. A pleasant last day to end on!

Sunday… The day of travel… tiring, but good to be back.

Please enjoy the Photo Gallery below:

The beginning shot of the trip at Gate 8 in Peoria

Remember the talkative man on the plane? He's the one behind Kristi in this shot

Kristi, slightly scared and tense as we are taking off

The new hat I got at the Mall of America

My mom and aunt on the elevator!

Red Balloon Discovery!

Andrea, Krystle and me (my cuz's)

Oh... dear Scottles, the bird

The afternoon that Kristi and I attempted Tennis in the hot AZ sun

A very strange shot that just had to be shared

Cool shot

The signs of a successful day of shopping

Kristi, my Uncle and I after enjoying a great steak dinner

My cousins, mom, aunts, and I, laughing... not quite sure what about, but we were having a good time!

My mom and Kristi attempting a game

My friend... Kristi didn't really like him

In the garden at Garland's before having a great supper

Beautiful Oak Creek

Kristi and I with Jerome displayed in the background

This sign was in the small diner we ate at in Jerome, and I thought it was cute

My mom and I in Jerome

On the way home from Oak Creek/Jerome, I saw this highway. I would like to drive there someday...

Kristi and I playing Nerds... the game of the trip

Last shot of the trip, loading up all the luggage

Love you all! T