Saturday, March 30, 2013

Good Friday Five

I know it technically isn't Friday anymore, but I haven't gone to bed yet so I consider it to still be Friday. And Good Friday at that! And for my Friday Five post this week, I am listing five wonderful songs for Easter :
1. Crown Him With Many Crowns
2. Holy, Holy, Holy
3. Christ the Lord is Risen Today
4. Jesus Paid it All
5. The Old Rugged Cross
Mark 15
33. And when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour
34. And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying,
ELOI, ELOI, LAMA SABACHTHANI? which is, being interpreted,
My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?
37. And Jesus cried out with a loud voice, and gave up the ghost.
Mark 16
6. ...Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: He is risen; He is not here...
15. And He said unto them,
Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature.
Take time this weekend to think about all that Jesus went through to make a way for us. To forgive us of our sins.
Because He loves us so fiercely.

Thursday, March 28, 2013


Throwback Thursday - Good Friday and Easter Sunday of last year!
At Carowinds on Good Friday :)
Easter Sunday 2012!

Throwback song: "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" - Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell
so good

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

My Weekend (Plus Monday)

I had a fabulous weekend!
On Friday, I got to eat lunch with Zach at my FAVORITE place, J&S.
Then I rode with Meghan to a store in Elon called All That Jas.  It's a sorority/fraternity store and I've been wanting to go there for over a year and never made it.  Luckily, Meghan needed to go, and we needed to hang out and catch up, and it just worked out perfectly!
Elon is a GORGEOUS town, especially in the spring, and All That Jas is on Elon University's campus. It sits on the most adorable little street. The street was lined with trees that were covered in pink and white blooms. I felt like I was in a Nicholas Sparks novel.
It was a perfect afternoon. The drive on the interstate was perfect. It was super sunny and I got really excited for summer.
That night, Brooke and I helped out with the Cotillion Grand Spring Ball at the HP Country Club.  It's for middle schoolers, and Brooke's sister Lexie was one of the students. She looked beautiful! It was so much fun. Everyone looked so nice! And of course, Brooke and I got asked if we were sisters. The norm. ;)

Saturday night, our awesome Bible study group had a dinner & game party, and it was a blast. I laughed so much. Good times with great friends :)
Sunday was verrrry relaxing.  I joined the youth at church for their Sunday school.  Church was awesome, we saw living proof of answered prayers, and we had a BBQ lunch at church after the service.
After eating, Zach and I went to the mall because he needed new jeans.  While in Belk's, we got some cups and plates (extremely adorable ones, I might add...and I will post pics soon!!!) for the apartment that my brother, Kacie, and I are moving into in August. YAY!
I ate with my family, ran to Walgreens with Ashley, read some of The Notebook, and then we had Bible study at Zach's, followed by some more fun friend time and hanging out with Granny.
Yesterday in class, we got the wonderful opportunity to meet the author of a book we just read - Blue. Joyce Hostetter is a very inspirational lady, and the book is an amazing historical fiction account of the polio outbreak in Hickory, NC in the 1940s and how well the city responded to it.
I was even more inspired to write books after last night. I love love love talking with authors about their work. I even got a copy of the book, and Joyce signed it.
I left class feeling very happy and inspired :)
 Got some Taco Bell with Carmen after class. Fast food is good. It's also good to have a buddy who's down for a fast food run at absolutely any time. Good food, good talks.
I cannot wait to tell you what they're for :)
Stay tuned!
Hope everyone has a fantastic week!!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Five for Friday!

It's tiiiiiiiiime ... for FRIDAY FIVE!
What I'm loving this week:
The Safe Haven soundtrack is SO mellow, so relaxing, so comforting. I don't usually even listen to a whole lot of this kind of music, but I have fallen in love with these songs. Maybe I'm opening myself up to new artists?!
My two favorite songs on the soundtrack are "Say Anything" by Tristan Prettyman and "Hearts Content" by Brandi Carlile.

Old Navy eyelet dresses!! These are only $25 until the end of March, and I may have bought a couple this week ;)
I think it was a good investment, because they are classy, timeless, look good with cardigans, can be paired with pretty much any kind of shoe, endless accessorization (is that a word?) possibilities, so colorful, flirty, and feminine... Yeah.

Altar'd State is one of the coolest stores I've ever been in. There's one at Friendly Center in Gboro, and when you go in, you first notice the abundance of the cutest, most feminine and sweet clothes ever (assuming you haven't been there before, and don't know anything about it, like my first time going there). As you walk through and look at the clothing and accessories, you notice something - they are playing Christian music.
If you look closely at the decorations, you notice that this is a God-centered store. And even cooler - on all the clothes that are AS brand, there is a tag that says that a portion of the proceeds from all AS-brand purchases will go to feed, clothe, and educate hungry children. What a great idea!
My favorite part of AS is their dressing room. Not only is it gorgeous, but there are chairs and a table and an open book where you can write prayer requests! So anyone who comes in after you can see what you wrote and pray for you.
You can see why Carmen and I are obsessed.

 Finger Paints' "Art District Delight."
This is the nail color I've been wearing this week, and I've really enjoyed it. It's an older color. I've had it for a while. But I love a good neutral color sometimes. It's good to mix up bright and bold with neutral and sweet.

And last but not least, my new TOMS!
I bought a pair of the yellow stitchout Toms. I searched and searched for the perfect yellow pair (because they had to be yellow with that verse on them!), and finally found the most perfect ones.
On Sunday evening, I put the little designs and the verse on them.
This is my FIRST pair of Toms :)
Happy Friday!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Throwback Thursdayy

I was racking my brain, trying to figure out the perfect post for this Throwback Thursday.
Then it hit me - why don't I just tell what happened yesterday?!
Yesterday, I got to go back to my old house - for the first time since I was 11 years old.
We were handing out Easter flyers for our church's Easter service/production, and one of my small group members and I went to a ton of houses handing them out. When we were done, we went to hand out some in her neighborhood (which is where I used to live).
It was so weird/cool to walk up that driveway and stand on that front porch for the first time in 13 years.  I thought about all the fun times we had at that house. I lived there from the time I was born until I was 11 years old. We moved the summer after my fifth grade year.
I looked at the front yard where me and my brother attempted to sell lemonade in the summer. I remembered how we used to also paint acorns and try to sell them with the lemonade.
I thought about how we used to climb the magnolia tree in the back yard, and how I got saved in my bedroom beside my Christmas tree when I was seven.
I thought about our beautiful living room and the Christmas trees we always put in there, and waiting up to catch a glimpse of Santa.
I thought about being really sad when it came time to move, and how badly I missed that house sometimes at Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Then I thought about long summer days playing outside.
I smiled.
We talked to the owner of the house for a few, invited him to church, and as we left I felt satisfied.
It was cool to go back.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Monday Motivation!

Happy Monday!
I had a fantastic weekend. On Friday afternoon, I had my first substituting job, relaxed and hung out with my family, and then met two of my lovely Alpha Chi sisters at Carter Brothers BBQ!
It was so much fun catching up with Leanna and Elyse, and the food was so yummy.
Afterward, Leanna, my sister, and I went to see Safe Haven since Leanna had not seen it.
That was the fourth time I've seen Safe Haven, and each time I find something new and different to love about it. It is easily one of my very favorite movies. We had so much fun!
On Saturday, I got to go to the wedding of a friend I've known since we were little and danced together - Meredith! The wedding was absolutely gorgeous and so sweet.
Right after the wedding, Ashley, Michael, my mom, and I went to a 65th birthday party for one of my mom's former co-workers. It was at the Women's Club of HP and the food was DELICIOUS.
Instead of going out and celebrating St. Patty's Day, I ended up getting caught up in a few hours of croakie designing on Saturday night...and that's all I can say about that for now! ;)
Sunday was a nice, relaxing day, as we got to go to church, lunch with my family, and Ashley, Rebecca and I did some wonderful Sunday afternoon shopping.
Later, we had Bible study, and that's always so lovely :)
I finished the weekend off visiting Granny and making a late-night Cookout run with Carmen.
Now it's Monday, and I know we all need some motivation! I know I do, because this is gonna be a crazy week for me.
So here we go:



Friday, March 15, 2013

Fun Friday Five!

What I'm loving this week:

ALL of these things from Bath and Body Works!! Brooke and I went shopping on Tuesday, and I stocked up on B&BW stuff for a good while. I got a few things from the Sweetheart Collection (first two pics) and a body spray in Rio Rumberry. I am completely in love.
The song "Hearts Content" by Brandi Carlile - on the Safe Haven soundtrack. It is in one of the cutest scenes in the movie and it just makes me feel so happy. It is a whimsical and carefree little love song. Perfect.

I actually bought a blouse in mint green and white, with pearl buttons when Brooke and I went shopping the other day. I absolutely adore it. I'll post a picture of it at some point, but here are a few very cute mint green items ^
Mint green is the "it" color right now! I think everyone loves it.

And last but not least, I love St. Patrick's Day and can't wait to sport my green this weekend (and eat endless St. Patty's Day treats from the Sweet Shoppe).
Everyone have a great weekend!!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Monday Motivation Time!

Monday Motivation - pretty self-explanatory
(and something I REALLY need to remember!!)
I was inspired to post this as this week's motivation because of a discussion that happened at our Bible study last night!
And I don't know what this has to do with anything, but this is my motivational jam for the day:
(Like I said, love this soundtrack. I never liked this song until I heard this version. In fact, I hated it. But this is a fantastic version and it made me like a song that I couldn't stand before. Funny how that works.)

Now That We Found Love, What Are We Gonna Do With It? (Part 1)

This will probably be the first of like a 5-part series of blogs on this topic. Bear with me, because my thoughts are jumbled and disorganized at the moment.

There is a song by the late rapper "Heavy D" who passed away last year. It is called "Now That We Found Love." I first heard it at the end of the movie Hitch in tenth grade. It wasn't until recently that I downloaded it. It's a good song.
Now to the point of this blog.
We had two wonderful people come to my church and speak to our youth group a few weeks ago. These two people are awesome bloggers and have written a book called Book of Matches. It is a book about finding and keeping healthy relationships.
[[ Relationships like girl/boy - not mother/daughter, father/son, father/daughter, cat/owner.........etc. ]]
When I heard these authors were coming, I got super excited. I'll be the first to admit, I mess up. A lot. In relationships. I'm quick to point fingers, impatient, I lose my temper quickly, etc. So I needed this kind of lesson.
Of course, the speakers were amazing. I talked to them after. I bought their book. I follow their blogs. I left church that night totally inspired. And the words that kept running through my mind that night were "now that we found love, what are we gonna do with it?"
Good question!
So I've written a little about finding a godly relationship
(and I plan on writing more at some point soon)

[[[And just so everyone knows, I don't even really know what I'm doing (reassuring, right?)... ]]]
I'm just navigating through life and doing the best I can.
I'm praying fervently and trying to make the best decisions in each situation.
I'm messing up every single day, asking for forgiveness, and promising to do better.

So now that we've found love, what are we gonna do with it?


This is SO hard, because as humans, we take everything for granted.
(Don't get me started...that's for a different post at a different time! Hah)

Please tell me how you can find someone who is completely perfect for you and you know that God sent you that person because you've been praying and waiting for years and you've committed to purity and he has too and you both have so much fun together and God is at the center of your relationship but you can STILL take him for granted?

How does that happen?
But we can't let this happen.

Now that we've found love, we have to cherish it. We have to realize how special it is and we have to show grace and mercy, just like Christ shows us.

We have to treat each other how we want to be treated.

We have to forgive and forget.

We have to be supportive of each other.

We have to pray together every day.

Now that we've found love, we're going to pray together every single day because a God-centered relationship is what we both desire, and that's the only way this is going to work for us.
And with God's help, we can get through anything and come out stronger than ever before.

*These are random ramblings and little thought-lets that are coming into my mind at about 3:30 am. If any of this makes sense, it might be a miracle.

**I'm also not talking about any specific situation, but just generally speaking what's been laid on my heart to type.

***There WILL be more later, when I've organized my thoughts a wee bit more :)


Friday, March 8, 2013

Kicking Myself!!!! BLAH

Yesterday was kind of bittersweet for me because I finished another journal - ran out of pages.
I've been writing in this journal for almost TEN years, which is why it was so bittersweet.
The very first entry is from the night before my 15th birthday. I was a new high schooler, scared to turn 15, and excited to be filling a new journal.
I feel like in a way, I've let myself down by not writing as much as I should have in that journal.
So much has happened in my life in the past TEN years - way more than would fit in ONE single journal.
I feel like I've failed myself by not writing as much
(especially since before this one, I went through like 2 journals in 2 years).
AND, half the journal is filled with special texts from people that I wanted to save, so I wrote them down......geeze.
At the same time, I feel like I'm closing a whole decade of my life - a whole, big, condensed written chapter, and starting a new one.
Granted, I did write and record all of the most important times of my life in this journal. The most important things are there, and that's good.
And for the past year and a half, I've had this blog, so I didn't write as much, thinking I'd just print off my blog entries and put them in my journal, which I'll probably do.
As you can see, I'm a HUGE fan of blogging, but I also think it's still important to keep a pen and paper journal. And now that I'm done with this one, and I've been reading through it, I've been inspired to turn many of my old journal entries into blog entries, which will be verrrry interesting:)
Anyway, here is what I wrote yesterday, as my last entry in this journal:
Thursday, March 7, 2013
I cannot believe I'm done with this journal. This is TEN years of stuff!! (Well, 9.5...)
I should have 5 or 6 journals jam-packed with stuff over these past ten years. Idk why I have all of high school AND college AND one semester of grad school in here! There's so much more I could've written. But that's just motivation to do better!
When I started this journal, I was 14 years old. I remember sitting at my desk, in my room, writing about turning 15 the next day.
Now, I sit here in the reading clinic at Appalachian, looking out the window at a snowy, cold day in Boone. A 24-year-old grad student.
It's cool to see how far I've come since I was that 14-year-old, new high schooler.  This is bittersweet! But now I can use the awesome journal Zach got me :)
P.S. WOW- just reading through this - HALF of this journal is just texts! Geeze - I REALLY didn't journal as much as I should have!
:( BOO.
oh well. what can you do now, right?
(good thing I'm super good at remembering things)

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

March 5

Girls, pay no attention to the quotes about how you should always be dressed to the nines when you leave your house because
"you never know when you'll meet your soulmate!"
...When I met Zach three years ago yesterday, I was in my Libby Hill outfit, at work. And he's still hanging out with me for some reason :)
I guess the best things in life do come when you least expect them!


Monday, March 4, 2013

Monday Motivation

I had a great weekend!
Ashley's birthday was Saturday, and on Sunday I got to r e l a x, and it was so nice.
Ashley and I went to the library, Target, and the mall after lunch.
I got to go home, talk to Chanelle on the phone, clean up a bit in my room and bathroom, paint my nails, and just hang out.
Then we had an amazing time at our Bible study group.
God is doing amazing things.
I love Sundays.
Now it's Monday, and here's your Monday Motivation! Try to do these things this week :)

Ashley's 14th Birthday!

Saturday was Ashley's 14th birthday!
I was a little emotional about this because 14 was such an important age for me.
My 14th birthday was probably one of the best I've had.
And I'm hoping that this time next year Ashley will be able to say that 14 was a fabulous year of growth, happiness, and joy.
I still can't believe Ashley is 14. It blows my mind. It really does seem like just yesterday, we were at the hospital, eating grilled cheese and drinking lemonade in the cafe, waiting for her to be born. I was satisfied, knowing I was getting what I had wanted for so long - a baby sister. My life would be complete - a little brother AND a little sister. I was the happiest girl in the world.
I've gotten to watch Ashley grow from a tiny baby into a beautiful little teenager. She's wise beyond her years, funny beyond belief, and a bundle of joy to all she encounters.
God has blessed me so much.
I prayed and prayed for a little sister to dress up, go shopping with, take to the movies, drive places with, laugh and talk with, share secrets with...
I got all that and more. :)
On Saturday morning, Ashley and I went to Sweet Shoppe Bakery and got cookies, brownies, and a cupcake :)
Then we went to Belk's and got like $200 worth of jewelry for $35 (no big deal).
My mom took her shopping next, and they had lunch together too.
I worked to finish the gifts I made for her.
For dinner, we all went to eat at Ruby Tuesday - Mama, Daddy, Michael, Ashley, Granny, Ashley's friend Abby, Zach, and me.
We had a great time, and afterward, we came home for Ashley to open her gifts.
She got some great stuff!
I made her a jewelry box, had a photo collage made, gave her some books, a dress, a pair of zebra print Toms, a journal, and some other stuff. Zach gave her a sparkly cross necklace!
sneak peek of the inside of the jewelry box

That's not the birthday girl!.....

There we go.



Happy 14 Ashley!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Another Recycled Post-Too Good Not to Re-post

I wrote this LAST YEAR on this day :)

Happy birthday to the best little sister ever.




A Special Day!

“How did it get so late so soon? It's night before it's afternoon. December is here before it's June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon?
~Dr. Seuss

YES, today is Dr. Seuss's birthday (and I'm going to see The Lorax tonight).

BUT it is also my sweet little sister's thirteenth birthday.

HOW did it get so late so soon?!?

Thirteen years ago right now, I was with my dad and brother and grandmothers and we were all at the hospital waiting for Ashley to arrive. I was ten years old.

I remember that at about this time, we were in the cafe area and I was munching on a grilled cheese sandwich and drinking pink lemonade. It was a Tuesday, and I was glad to be out of school. It was the most exciting day of my life. I had wanted a little sister for five years, and I had prayed almost every night for one.

{FYI I'm almost in tears right now hahah}

As we waited in the waiting room, I was getting anxious, and my brother has Matchbox NASCAR cars and he was sending them flying around the room.

Finally, around 4:00 that afternoon (3:59 to be exact), our little sister arrived! We had to get our temperature taken before going in to see her, and my temperature was 99. My brother's was normal (even though he'd been running around being hyper all day). So he got to hold her, and I didn't :(

But I got to name her :) My parents had a list of names they liked and I decided I liked "Ashley Brooke." She had reddish hair and blue eyes. She was 8 lbs 4 oz.

I finally had the sister I'd been wanting all my life!!!!
(I did love my brother a lot, BTW haha)

Since then, Ashley has become one of my best friends. She goes everywhere with me. We share clothes and shoes. That's what I've always wanted. Last night when I was talking to my granny, she said, "Well, Ashley will be thirteen tomorrow." It hadn't even hit me...I mean, I had just gotten her a gift (an ADORABLE dress), and I knew her birthday was today, of course. But it hadn't hit me that she will technically be a teenager. It's bittersweet, really. I don't want her to grow up, but I'm so excited to see all the things she's gonna do in life.