Sunday, September 21, 2014

Philly & Family

This little girl surprised me with her bravery!  I think she might be a natural horsewoman.

Fall is almost here, and surprisingly, I'm getting excited!  
Not quite sure about seeing snow yet though.

He finally posed for me.  I was trying to capture those adorable freckles!

If this picture is blurry, it's because I don't think she ever stops moving!

For a short weekend away, I went with some friends to Philly.  It had been years since I had been there.  We filled our short time there to the max!

Eastern State Penitentiary was a favorite stop!  We walked around with headsets that narrated what we were seeing.  The penitentiary was mostly left how it had been when they stopped using it a couple decades ago.  It was kind of beautiful in an eerie kind of way.

Eastern State Penitentiary - so full of history and so interesting and a little bit eerie.

These beautiful ladies are my favorite!
 We went to Reading Terminal Market for breakfast/lunch.  I read that the cannoli's from Termini Bros. were a must-try.  There were no prices on any of the delicious-looking pastries, so we splurged (and shared) - at $4 a piece.  They were pretty good.  And we also tried authentic (I guess...) Philly cheesesteaks, with cheeze-whiz....who knew? 

We decided to hit the Liberty Bell first thing in the morning.  It was a wise decision.  We walked by later in the day and the line wrapped around the building.

 We also took a (free) tour of Independence Hall.  I believe it was my first time there.  The worst part of the tour was when we had to throw away our almost-full cups of coffee (otherwise known as our breakfast) before entering the building. :(

Independence Hall - so much history!

Philadelphia - city of brotherly love.

Elfreth's Alley - one of the oldest streets.
 We also saw the Philadelphia U.S. mint, Benjamin Franklin's grave, and a Quaker meeting house.  Needless to say, our feet were tired by the end of the day!

And that was my last hurrah before buckling down to I must get back to packing my poor little brain full....

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Pieces of My [summer] Story

"And so my prayer is that your story will have involved some leaving and some coming home, some summer and some winter, some roses blooming out like children in a play.  My hope is your story will be about changing, about getting something beautiful born inside of you, about learning to love a woman or a man, about learning to love a child, about moving yourself around water, around mountains, around friends, about learning to love others more than we love ourselves, about learning oneness as a way of understanding God.

We get one story, you and I, and one story alone.  God has established the elements, the setting and the climax and the resolution.  It would be a crime not to venture out, wouldn't it?

"It might be time for you to go.  It might be time to change, to shine out....
-Donald Miller in Through Painted Deserts

Highlights of Summer
Trucking with Dad.

Camping the other weekend - so much fun and so many laughs!

I love camping here!

Grilled pizza - a lot of work, but oh, so good.

Best piece of graffiti I've seen in awhile! ;)
Okay, I won't!
 I helped with a VBS in York again this year.  First time in a long time.  Our class probably had the smallest number of students.  They were so good though!  I wasn't sure what to expect from 11 and 12 year old girls.

 Fun times with the nieces and nephews.  Eight of them to be exact.  First the petting zoo and then pony rides.  (Why would they all pick pony rides when you could ride a camel? Beats me!) Then lunch at McDonald's. Then playtime at the park.  Then naptime.....for me.  Hahaha, no, not really.
Connor, Mariah, me, Breanne, Sienna

The self-proclaimed vegetarian on the left is eating her chicken nuggets like an old pro. :)

This McDonald's had rather limited seating, so there was a girls' table and a boys' table (plus one girl).
Some boys don't like to get their picture taken.

We watched fireworks along the Susquehannah River in Harrisburg.

It's always a good time!

Fireworks over the river.

Got to visit Kelly.  We spent a fun two days using the rope swing and waterslide at the swimming hole, shopping, walking, being a little bit lazy, eating and of course, lots of talking.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Sweet Summertime

Here's to waving at summer as it flies by!

 Finally got the whole bedroom suit (mostly) done.  I used Miss Mustard Seed's chalk paint.  It comes in a powder form and you mix it with water to make the paint.  It's used a lot for the rustic looking furniture, because it chips off well, until you put a finishing coat on it.  Let's just say I'm glad that project is finished!

Kale chips

Gluten free pizza.  (It looks better than it tastes.  I'll have to keep experimenting!)

My new-found obsession - infused water!!!!  Strawberries and lemons in water.  The possibilities are endless.

 I'm thinking that strawberries are tasting especially good this year.  It's been three years since I've eaten them fresh out of the garden.  And that's the best kind, hands down.

My dad's convinced she's retarded.  I'm sure this picture won't convince him otherwise.

 Started off nice and clean....

 We did a Color Run!  Lots of fun and color, but not exactly a true 5k.  The path was too crowded to even run sometimes!   So hopefully a "real" 5k in the future sometime soon.  But this was fun too!

...and finished nice and colorful!

 Unfortunately, I didn't get any pictures of VBS at my church.  It was a good week, though.

And now, I have to figure out where to fit in last minute things, like CPR classes and orientations, routine doctor visits, more VBS, camping, and of course, work!  I'm sure I'll get it all in there!

And a final challenge (mostly to myself):

remember this!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

The Sin of Omission

by Margaret E. Sangster

It isn't the thing you do, dear,
  It's the thing you leave undone
That gives you a bit of a heartache
  At setting of the sun.
The tender word forgotten,
  The letter you did not write,
The flowers you did not send, dear,
  Are your haunting ghosts at night.

The stone you might have lifted
  Out of a brother's way;
The bit of heartsome counsel
  You were hurried too much to say;
The loving touch of hand, dear,
  The gentle, winning tone
Which you had no time nor thought for
  With troubles enough of our own.

Those little acts of kindness
  So easily out of mind,
Those chances to be angels
  Which we poor mortals find--
They come in night and silence,
  Each sad, reproachful wraith,
When hope is faint and flagging,
  And a chill has fallen on faith.

For life is all too short, dear,
  And sorrow is all too great,
To suffer our slow compassion
  That tarries until too late;
And it isn't the thing you do, dear,
  It's the thing you leave undone
Which gives you a bit of a heartache
  At the setting of the sun.

shine -- C.S. Lewis

Monday, May 19, 2014

{very} Random Thoughts

Hearing about so many young lives cut short has reminded me about the brevity of life.  It reminds me that life isn't all fun and games - they are things to be done - people to love and bless, and a God to glorify. 
But on the other hand, life is short.  Enjoy it while it lasts.  Live every day to the fullest, with no regrets.  Tell someone you love them, try new things, make new friends.  The older I get, the faster time flies!

 I'm working at this!
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Some of my best thinking is done while scrubbing the kitchen floor on hands and knees.  I realized then that if I ever have my own kitchen, I would appreciate a small one, maybe around 5' by 7'.  (I actually had some other thoughts too, lest you think my best thinking is.....lacking.)

I'm trying to cook more and make some new dishes.  That gnocchi I  made awhile back?  Not so good...and lots of leftover dough.  So I used the sweet potato dough to make ravioli filled with sausage, cream cheese, and cheese.  We ate them with spaghetti sauce and they tasted better than that gnocchi.

 My bedroom suite is going from this: this:
 Since I'm finished with school till next semester, I'm trying to do a couple of projects in between jobs.  I'm experimenting with Miss Mustard Seed's Milk Paint in Flow Blue.  It comes in a powder that you mix with water.  It dries with a chalky finish, but brightens up if you apply a sealer or finish coat on top.  It's a good paint to use if you're going for the distressed look, as it chips off easily.

Got to spend time with the little sister and go to a wedding. 

I'm taking her to the vet tomorrow for her checkup and I'm as nervous as....well, I'm just kinda nervous.  She's cleaner than this, by the way.

And that's all for this very random post.  I've considered deleting this whole post - it's quite the hodge-podge of thoughts.  But that's my life, I guess.

Final challenge:
 Ok, see ya later!

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Spring Break in Grenada

 It was such a good, good trip and a welcomed break from school!  I almost thought I wouldn't be able to go, but with the help of air miles from my dear parents, I went!  I loved seeing everybody again.  It almost felt like I had never left!

The day after I got there we hiked Mt. St. Catherine, my 3rd time!

Although you can't really see it, we got pretty muddy!
Got to see sweet, little Caleb for the first time.

The youth got together Sunday afternoon to play frisbee football.

Anika & Caleb

The beach looked as beautiful as ever!

Funniest note from one of the students I taught last year - can't say he lied though.
I ordered oildown - and then got to help prepare it.

Spent some time at school.  I loved getting to see all the kids again!
Jada & Jivona
This is what happens when someone gets a hold of my phone and starts snapping pictures! :)
Rice & peas, stewed pumpkin, and baked chicken - how I missed Grenadian food!
Gorgeous Grand Anse sunset
Got to try some new foods while I was there:  this is rabbit browndown.
That big piece of meat is the rabbit - *kinda* tasty...
I caught a fish...actually three of them, but the other two weren't even worth taking a picture of.
The other noteworthy food I ate:  iguana.... *kinda* tasty, I guess.....
Got to really surprise my good friend, Shereen!
Briana & Shanika - two of the first students I ever taught....poor girls! ;)
Three little sweeties!

I filled in for Ms. John and watched her kindergarten class for a hike to Seven Sisters.  It experience, and a lot of fun! :)

Aden, Jivondo, Jaden, Tagen, Jivona, Jada, Faith, Alinthia

Missed views like these!

My housemates - Leann & Rhonda.  Loved liming with these ladies again.  We had sooo much catching up to do!
...And that's it....I'm finally caught up on blogging.  And now my life returns to it's regularly scheduled normalness!

Happy Spring, everybody!!!