Friday, April 18, 2014

Take the Moment and Make it Perfect

     A wise friend once told me, "Don't wait for the perfect moment. Take the moment and make it perfect."

     It's wonderful advice, especially when you want to chicken out of something you should do.

     Like when you want to
  • start eating healthy.
  • work out.
  • organize your closet.
  • buy a new couch.
  • get out of debt.
     I am not saying you should rush into these things, but when God gives you the ok, GO FOR IT!

     Do you want to know how I've applied this in my life?

     I have:
  • led a summer Bible study for girls two or three grades below me for three years.
  • gone on two mission trips to the Amazon.
  • redecorated my bedroom.
  • gone three months without sugar (in 2012).
  • started a blog (the one you are reading now) at age 13.
  • had people over, even in our tiny duplex.
     But I am not perfect. Far from it! I:
  • push my quiet time to last on my to-do list.
  • waste valuable time.
  • avoid confrontations.
  • think too much about the future sometimes (because dreamer is part of my personality).
     Don't wait for perfect circumstances to chase your wildest dreams!

     You know why?

     Because there never will be perfect circumstances unless you let now be the perfect time.

     Now is the perfect time to chase your dreams.


Thursday, April 17, 2014

Simple Spring Tablescape (just in time for Easter!)

     Keep in mind we threw this together with stuff we already had:
  • Tables & chairs
  • Glasses
  • Plates
  • Napkins
  • Forks
  • Jars (for flowers)
  • Little Easter baskets
     The only things we bought were:
  • Flowers
  • Candy/Chocolate
  • Grass (in Easter baskets)
     On the plates are these adorable little baskets that we bought years ago. They are in lovely spring colors: pink, yellow, blue, and green.

     Inside the baskets, dark chocolate and jelly bellies!

     This chocolate (above) is the yummiest. A favorite all 'round our family. That's what we got for Valentine's Day too. They have a version without almonds, if you're that kind of person.

     Pretty flowers! Mom was inspired by the picture below.

     We pull the desk from my room when we need to seat more than four people. We sold our kitchen table before moving and are living around a card table.
     Have a lovely day (full of chocolate, rainbows, ponies, and Oompa-Loompas)!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A Brazilian Girl is Waiting for Hope

     Hey! Would you do me a favor?

     I would love it if you clicked on over to this page: and read about my most recent adventure, sponsoring a little girl in Brazil named Eduarda!

     It's thrilling, challenging, and rewarding! You can be a part of it too by sharing the link and telling others about Fernanda, the little Brazilian girl I am hoping to get sponsored through Compassion International. Or, if you feel led, you can sponsor Fernanda (scroll to the bottom of the page) for just $38 a month.



P.S. Rewards in heaven, friends!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

3 Ways to Make Someone's Day in Half a Second

     Herein I disclose the mystery on the ages. The pinnacle of human knowledge. The priceless secrets of making (and keeping!) friends.

     Actually, it's simpler than that!

     The three ways to make someone's day in half a second are (and it's not flowers or chocolate!):
  1. Smile! People love when you show your teeth. It says "I am happy to see you!" in a way nothing else can. Smile at strangers who make eye contact with you in the grocery store. Smile at your family, your best friend, a new acquaintance, and everyone in between.
  2. Address the person you are speaking to by their name! Everyone loves to hear their own name said in your lovely voice, so just do it! It tells the person two things: you remember their name and think they are special. All you have to do is say their name. Obviously, there will be times using a first name will go with a Mrs. or Mr. or Miss or President or Queen, but the sound of a name rings like true music to one's ears.
  3. Say "Thank you!" Not just a hurried "Thanks" underneath your breath, but a sincere "Thank you" (while making eye contact with the person you are thanking). Thank the cashier, the hostess/cook, the gentleman who opens the door, the waitress, the valet, the pizza delivery guy, the neighbor who brings you cookies, or anyone who does you a favor. Never forget to say two simple words: "Thank you!"
     NOTE: Whether or not you remember to thank someone in person, you can send a thank you note when appropriate (probably not the pizza guy, but a dinner host/hostess.)

     So, in summary:
  1. Show your teeth!
  2. Remember people's names, so you can use them!
  3. Always say "Thank you!"
     They are all fast and effective, so use them! I also like to smile and say, "Thank you, __________!" (Insert Mary, Jo, or Bob.) :)

     Then I am doing them all at the same time. It's a triple whammy!


Monday, April 14, 2014

I Feel Like an Artist

     Saturday I broke out my paints and made an ombre LOVE sign inspired by the one-and-only Pinterest. I feel like an artist!
     (It is easier to read in person I promise! It looks whiter in the lighting I used.)

     The only flaw was that I did it very cheaply with materials we already had. Instead of a canvas and painter's tape, I used watercolor paper (that won't wrinkle when wet) and masking tape. NEVER AGAIN! That resulted in some ripped paper. Oops! I did my best to take off the tape cleanly, and the roughness is a somewhat artistic touch.

     So lesson #1? Don't cut corners!

     Lesson #2? Be flexible!

     This one is not for sale; however, I'd be happy to make you one and send it to you for $5. Just tell me if you want red, green, blue, or yellow. I cannot guarantee it won't be ripped. :)

     Comment or shoot me an email, so I can make you one soon! You could also have one made for a friend or your mother! (Mother's Day is next month.)

     Have a lovely weekend!


Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Living (or Biking!) With a Destination in Mind

     It's beautiful outside.

     The trees are sprouting bright green leaves and even our dilapidated backyard was recently pruned by yours truly and her family for spring. The blues are so blue, and the greens are so green.


     I have a confession.

     Until I was eleven, I'd never really ridden on a bicycle.

     A million laps around the neighborhood, one crash into a pole, and one trip to the emergency room later (to confirm I hadn't broken my arm), I can ride with the park, to the library, wherever!

     I love biking. It's the main way I get exercise. My first "real" bike still gets me where I need to go.

     The main thing I have learned (other than to slow down when I am rounding corners, to avoid crashing into poles) is to have a destination.

     I used to bike on Saturdays only, exactly four laps around the neighborhood, approximately one mile.

     But I quickly got bored with the mundane routine with no scenery other than another house.

     My only destination was Planet-I-Got-That-Bike-Ride-Over-With.

     But now that we've moved within a mile of the park, we bike there, motivated by getting to see ducks and climbing all over the kid's section with slides, swings, and what my brother calls the Spiderman poles.

     We've biked to the library, motivated by setting down a heavy pack of books and reading in peace and quiet.

     I've even biked 25 minutes to a friend's house and 25 minutes back a few times, motivated by a huge hug and cool glass of water that I know I will instantly receive.

     When I have a destination, I am less likely to try to turn around. Once I pass the halfway point, I usually say to myself:

     "Well, this is it. No turning back. Might as well go forward now."

     And then I reach my goal-- two stoplights, one ditch, and many panting breaths later.

     No iPod. No special gear except a helmet. No motivation except my goal.

     This is why I set tiny daily goals with rewards. After school, I get to have dinner with my family. After this babysitting job, I get to go collapse in my own bed. After I make dinner, I can listen to my family ooh and aah. After I finish this blog post, I can eat breakfast and start school with an accomplishment already under my belt. :)

     "I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus." ~Philippians 3:14

     What is your goal? Your destination? Your motivation in life (or biking!)?


Monday, April 7, 2014

Typewriters Are So Romantic (An Obsession!)

     I love this photo.

     For the jewelry and mug, yes; but mainly for the typewriter.

     The first time I clicked away on a typewriter years ago, I was enthralled. There was magic underneath my finger tips. Slowly, I tapped out verbiage with the black ink and the square-like letters.

     A beautiful, working typewriter for typing stories is the dreamiest thing I can think of, other than a hammock swaying in a gentle summer breeze.

     Fancy, gaudy jewelry is just the icing on the cake. Or cupcake. Yeah. I like cupcakes better.

     I know I am a writer, and I don't need a typewriter to help me claim my identity. A bright yellow one would be my obsession!


P.S. Want to read about my other obsessions?

My Bunny Rabbit Obsession
My Statement Necklace Obsession
My 37 Favorite-est Things Right Now
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