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my life in my words


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Counting Rope

crLogo

The counting rope knots never lie

One. Two. Three. Four. Five.

One brave little girl that dared to dare

Two adults running fast, running scared

Three more days to plan the escape

Four hours spent cutting cautious red tape

Five years of fearful regrets fill my eyes

Another knot now, welling up in my core

Hold out the rope and reach for the drawer

One little lighter fueling this fighter

Two clicks to flame, blaze burning brighter

Three knots engulfed in the sun-kissed gleam

Four burning burdens give way to new dreams

Five tears of freedom lead to something more

The counting rope singed in a pile on the ground.

What was has been burned, new endeavors abound.


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Greatest Love Of All

Winston Churchill once said, “History will be kind to me for I intend to write it.” I was at a youth conference years ago when I heard those words repeated and they have stuck with me since. It was a constant reminder that we have a chance each day to set up ourselves and our world for a bright future. The change and the hope that we push to the forefront of our lives to reveal to others carries with it much merit. Like many, I crave purpose and want to know that what I am doing makes a difference.  For that reason, I have made it a point to keep that mentality posed by Churchill at the heart of the things I invest my life in. I want to have a bright future, and likewise I want the generations to follow to have a fulfilling and bright future.

After grabbing breakfast, we headed over to her school where I got the grand tour, met her teaching teammates and helped set up for the day.

After grabbing breakfast, we headed over to her school where I got the grand tour, met her teaching teammates and helped set up for the day.

One of the simple ways I was able to invest in the future lately was volunteering at a local school. One of our Westside Kids ministry workers is a teacher there and after hearing more about her passion to see kids succeed in life, I asked if I could come in and serve alongside her to bless the class. She works at Seattle’s first charter school in the city. This particular charter school is both an educating school and social services agency for children and families struggling with the risks and realities of homelessness. Their school provides Pre-Kindergarten through 6th grade education for traumatized, abused, or homeless children. For the families, they provide wrap-around social services to stabilize their housing and end the crises which put them at risk of homelessness. This school seeks to break they cycle of poverty and homelessness.

After assisting kids with questions during their Math Quiz, I would listen as the kids would take turns quietly reading their books to me. One boy pulled me over to this pole and proudly showed off that he could say all of the words posted on it!

After assisting kids with questions during their Math Quiz, I would listen as the kids would take turns quietly reading their books to me. One boy pulled me over to this pole and proudly showed off that he could say all of the words posted on it!

It may seem odd to volunteer at a school where I have no kids (because I don’t have kids at all) but I found it valuable to give my time and energy to invest in a crew of kids that my teammate was investing in daily. One of my younger nieces currently attends a different brand/style of Charter School back home and I know that if I lived there still, I would offer the same services to the teachers there. It was an honor and blessing to work with this particular crew of kids and to serve my friend/their teacher in some simple but impactful ways. I walked away with such a positive experience and a renewed passion for the younger generation!

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As a volunteer, I got to sit with them in story time at the Library and lead them in a class craft about Harriet Tubman. The Library time was awesome because two of them crowded around me and snuggled in as the Librarian read the story. Then, they let me help them pick out books (oh Heaven!). It was also great to work with them on crafts and to see their wonder and awe at the flip books that they got to make and take home! 

I am looking forward to volunteering in her class once a month and getting to know everyone better. Her kids definitely think, behave, and feel differently than most kids I’ve worked with in the past, but to see them grow beyond their limitations is exciting. One of the kids in her class particularly has severe learning and behavioral disorders so they have a special aide that stays in class to assist with that one child. Still, their classmates cheered on when progress was noted and made sure that that child felt loved and included. It was also so sweet that the classroom kiddos were asking questions about the kids that go to our church—if we do crafts, what we do to have fun, and if we have church every day. While these kids may never get a chance to darken the door of our church in Ballard, I do love that they get to experience the love of Christ through their daily interactions with their phenomenal teacher, Ms. Reddy!

Social Studies time included a book about Harriet Tubman and her work with the Underground Railroad.

Social Studies time included a book about Harriet Tubman and her work with the Underground Railroad. The kids loved hearing about Harriet Tubman during Social Studies and were even able to correlate the information from the class book to others they had read in their free time. When they heard that Harriet wasn’t allowed to go to school, they chimed in agreement that it was probably because schools weren’t built in her time. It was fun to hear their varying perspectives and to enlighten them as they asked their questions.

What about you? Have you ever volunteered at a local school/community center/church? If so, what was your experience like? If not, what has been holding you back?

I'm super proud of all the hard work that my friend (and teachers like her) put in to give kids a chance to learn and build confidence. If you know a teacher in your life, please give them a great big hug and a word of encouragement—it means a LOT!

I’m super proud of all the hard work that my friend (and teachers like her) put in to give kids a chance to learn and build confidence. If you know a teacher in your life, please give them a great big hug and a word of encouragement—it means a LOT!


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Not About Angels

Pins and needles . . . that’s what I’m sitting on. It’s that typical story of developing a life-long love and you’re pretty sure they are going to “pop the question” soon. But are they? Really?!? Could it happen? Could your wildest dreams come true?

The season 1 cast of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation

I sure hope so. I’ve stuck with CSI: Crime Scene Investigation for 15 good seasons now—not to mention all of CSI:NY and some of CSI:Miami. I’ve lived through countless cases of plot twist after plot twist and mystery after mystery. I’ve probably seen each episode of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation at least 3 times. My favorites include:

GRAVE DANGER

CSI Nick Stokes is kidnapped and buried alive by an angry father whose daughter is in jail. Before giving the CSI team the location of the live grave, he blows himself up. This leaves the CSIs a short amount of time to put the clues together to find him and rescue him before his time is up!

CSI Nick Stokes is kidnapped and buried alive by an angry father whose daughter is in jail. Before giving the CSI team the location of the live grave, he blows himself up. This leaves the CSIs a short amount of time to put the clues together to find him and rescue him before his time is up! | It was one of my favorites because in the end, the team was reunited after having been split into 2 teams as punishment in the previous season.

FOR WARRICK

The team bands together when one of their beloved teammates is murdered and the person responsible has a perfect scapegoat. This was one of my favorites because you rarely get to see Grissom get emotional, but the deep emotional acting in this episode was on-point!

The team bands together when one of their beloved teammates is murdered and the person responsible has a perfect scapegoat. | This was one of my favorites because you rarely get to see Grissom get emotional, but the deep emotional acting in this episode was on-point! I cry almost every time I watch it. :(

APPENDICITEMENT

Henry's surprise birthday party turns into disaster when the guys discover a dead body in a shut-down, out-of-the-way barbecue joint. | This episode was just hilarious from top to bottom! Generally CSI eppys are jam packed with tension, worry, and sorry. However, this one broke ALL the rules!

Henry’s surprise birthday party turns into disaster when the guys discover a dead body in a shut-down, out-of-the-way barbecue joint. | This episode was just hilarious from top to bottom! Generally CSI eppys are jam packed with tension, worry, and sorry. However, this one broke ALL the rules!

THE DEVIL AND D.B. RUSSELL

The search for the serial killer who kidnapped Brass's daughter intensifies after CSI Morgan Brody become the killer's latest kidnapping victim. | This one was extra fascinating because it formed its storyline on the basis of one of my favorite books—The Inferno by Dante. All of the crimes highlighted a different circle of hell. Very detailed and fast-paced . . . me gusta!

The search for the serial killer who kidnapped Brass’s daughter intensifies after CSI Morgan Brody become the killer’s latest kidnapping victim. | This one was extra fascinating because it formed its storyline on the basis of one of my favorite books—The Inferno by Dante. All of the crimes highlighted a different circle of hell. Very detailed and fast-paced . . . me gusta!

THE CSI EFFECT/THE TWIN PARADOX/THE GREATER GOOD

Contact the Show Creators on IMDbPro » More at IMDbPro » CSI: Crime Scene Investigation: Season 15, Episode 13 The Greater Good (4 Jan. 2015) TV Episode - 60 min - Crime | Drama | Mystery 8.0 Your rating: -/10 Ratings: 8.0/10 from 70 users Reviews: write review D.B. makes the risky decision to use his daughter as bait to catch the Gig Harbor Killer, and discovers the shocking identity of the killer's partner. | This one is part of a continuation of episodes . . . and won't actually end until the end of this series!  But it's already one of my favorites because my childhood boyfriend, Zack Morris from Saved By The Bell is now playing a set of criminal TWINS!  Oh this batch of episodes is edge-of-your-seat intense!

Contact the Show Creators on IMDbPro » More at IMDbPro » CSI: Crime Scene Investigation: Season 15, Episode 13 The Greater Good (4 Jan. 2015) TV Episode – 60 min – Crime | Drama | Mystery 8.0 Your rating: -/10 Ratings: 8.0/10 from 70 users Reviews: write review D.B. makes the risky decision to use his daughter as bait to catch the Gig Harbor Killer, and discovers the shocking identity of the killer’s partner. | This one is part of a continuation of episodes . . . and won’t actually end until the end of this series! But it’s already one of my favorites because my childhood boyfriend, Zack Morris from Saved By The Bell is now playing a set of criminal TWINS! Oh this batch of episodes is edge-of-your-seat intense!

And don’t even get me started on CSI:NY! Okay, okay, so maybe do. My top 2 from that spin-off are:

PERSONAL FOUL

About a girl who is publicly humiliated for being overweight and the means she takes to give her bully a little taste of his own medicine. | The transformation of the character is crazy cakes! And I definitely didn't see the ending coming. It's worth it just to watch the final interrogation scene.

About a girl who is publicly humiliated for being overweight and the means she takes to give her bully a little taste of his own medicine. | The transformation of the character is crazy cakes! And I definitely didn’t see the ending coming. It’s worth it just to watch the final interrogation scene.

And YAHRZEIT

An episode that focuses on the dirty dealings of those who auction off belongings from Holocaust victims. | This one deals a lot with one of my bigger up-front topics of choice (the Holocaust). I felt it brought both awareness and justice for the terrible things that happened then and cracked open discussions for the ways that hatred and prejudice still run free today. Photo cred: Sonja Flemming

An episode that focuses on the dirty dealings of those who auction off belongings from Holocaust victims. | This one deals a lot with one of my bigger up-front topics of choice (the Holocaust). I felt it brought both awareness and justice for the terrible things that happened then and cracked open discussions for the ways that hatred and prejudice still run free today.
Photo cred: Sonja Flemming

(L to R) A.J. Buckly as Lab Cyber/Tech Adam Ross, Anna Belknap as CSI Lindsay Monroe-Messer, Carmine Giovinazzo as CSI Danny Messer, Gary Sinise as Det. (Crime Lab Director) Mac Taylor, Melina Kanakaredes as CSI Stella Bonasera (later replaced by Sela Ward as CSI Jo Danville), Eddie Cahill as Det. Don Flack, Hill Harper as CSI/Dr. Sheldon Hawkes, and Robert Joy as (Coroner) Dr. Sid Hammerback.

CSI:NY lived a long and beautiful life. I have probably watched every episode in that series at least 4 times. I mean, c’mon . . . Messer and Flack are a dynamic (and forever attractive) crime-fighting duo!

In the Fall of 2014, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation was moved to the “killer” spot—Sunday nights at 10/9p CT with a truncated season (only 18 instead of their usual 22). That kind of scheduling during football season is a sure sign that a network is trying to kill the series off quietly. While the executives are still pulling for a 16th season, the future of the series is still unsure.

(L to R) Robert David Hall as [Coroner] Dr. Al Robbins, Jorja Fox as CSI Sara Sidel, George Eads as CSI Nick Stokes, Ted Danson as CSI Lab Director D.B. Russell, Elisabeth Shue as CSI Julie Finlay, Eric Szmanda as CSI Greg Sanders, Paul Guilfoyle as Captain Jim Brass

Meanwhile, they are preparing to launch a new spin-off called CSI:CYBER starring Patricia Arquette, James Van Der Beek, and Shad “Bow Wow” Moss. I truly did enjoy the CSI/CSI:CYBER crossover (KITTY) but I’m just not sure I can get behind that cast and the overall concept of the show:

The FBI’s team of cyber crime investigators, headed by Special Agent Avery Ryan (Patricia Arquette), works to solve cases involving the dark-net. Avery, a Special Agent in Charge and esteemed cyber-psychologist is in charge of the Cyber Crime Division at Quantico, Virginia. The team she leads is tasked with solving Internet-related murders, cyber-theft, hacking, sex offenses, and blackmail.

(via csifiles.com)

I just can’t take Dawson . . . erm . . . James Van Der Beek seriously right now. I mean I may grow to like his character in time, but right now, I just can’t. To make matters even worse, actor George Eads who plays Nick Stokes is leaving after this current season is over. He’s got a new baby and wants to take time off to tend to his family, which is truly honorable . . . but I’m still really going to miss Nick on the show. His character had great arcs and his acting was top notch! Still, that just means that the original cast has only left behind a handful of members to guide this team from one crime to the next. Thankfully, my cutie boo Greg Sanders is still in-it-to-win-it!

Eric Szmanda as Greg Sanders

I really hope they do continue CSI into another season. If not, I may just have to barricade myself in my room and indulge in EVEN MORE CSI binges . . . kind of like I did with LOST when it ended.

(via troll.me) 

What about you—do you have any shows that would break your heart if they got cancelled? Any favorite characters you’ve had to sadly bid farewell to?


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I’ve Got The Power

hero

One of my favorite shows as a kid was HE-MAN AND THE MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE. As a child, I believed that ordinary people could be capable of extraordinary things. Every time that Prince Adam transformed into He-Man, my heart fluttered because that meant that I could be a hero just like he was. So many of my own personal heroes have been ordinary people—just like you and me. Now that I’m older, I get to live in a land of opportunity to be a hero to others. It’s not my life goal, nor is it a temporary aspiration. It’s a focus. It’s a dream. It’s a hope, a whispered prayer—that God could use an ordinary person like me to do extraordinary things.

I can’t say I’ve arrived, because I always feel like there’s more I could do, more I could be, more I could focus on. Still, I look back at my personal heroes and feel as though I’ve joined their ranks. And here’s why:

  • I came from a broken family and I’ve been able to mend and redefine many of those relationships. That’s what my heroes did for me when I was broken.
  • From an apathetic kid who found it too hard to love myself or others, I’ve grown to discover the beauty and power of loving everyone, myself included. Which is exactly what my heroes fought to bring about in my life.
  • For years, my heroes spent countless hours thinking about me, praying for me, investing into my life. Now as a Children’s Director and Youth Pastor, I get to do the same thing and repay the kindness—not out of obligation, but out of the honor in sharing the gift of life with others.
  • Like my heroes, I’m not afraid to face the tough situations anymore. We definitely still feel the tension. We still have to hammer our way through the “What-Ifs,” but it’s worthwhile when the fear is defeated and the courage shines through. By no means have we mastered this, but we don’t let it stifle us as much as it used to.
  • My heroes taught me how to live in the dreams that God has given me. I don’t just chase them, I seize them and I ride the wave as long as I can with all the “umph” I can. I once dreamed of moving to Seattle to mentor teens. I waited 8 long years to realize that dream. It’s been a long bumpy road, but I don’t regret a second of it. I hear that dream singing back to me when a teen tells me that God answered their prayer or that they want to know more about the Bible and call me their Youth Pastor. Dream. Come. True . . . and then some, because I also get to equip and train our volunteers to do the same for the Kid’s Ministry.
  • My heroes and I take our beatings like champs. We cry. We endure the mind games. We pray. We kiss the mind games goodbye. We binge watch chick flicks (just me??). We pray some more. We take a deep breath. We take the next step in the right direction. Then just when we think we’ve got it all under control, we miss the mark again, and start the cycle all over again.

I could write chapters about the things that heroes go through . . . but I’d just be wasting my time . . . because you already know. You are a hero to someone. Whether you know it or not—whether you think no one is watching or not. There is someone in your community that sees you, studies you, Facebook stalks you, and secretly wishes to spend hours with you because they are attracted to your personality, beliefs, and way of living. So let me ask you this:

What kind of hero do you see in yourself?
What kind of hero do you want others to see in you?
What drives you to battle?
What passionate thing tugs at your heart so much that you lose sleep over it? 

Chase that. Today. Take little steps if you must, but don’t let it out of your sight.

You are a hero to someone. They are watching how you treat others. They are watching how you take care of yourself. They are studying your habits. They are wondering if they could ever be as Smart/Beautiful/Kind/Compassionate/Giving/Humble/Resourceful, etc. as you are.

I’ve been blessed to have others in my life to set a heroic example for me—pastors, friends, authors, designers, missionaries, etc. I’ve taken pieces of them and incorporated it into who I am today. And while I may not be a hero to anyone directly today, I keep clinging to the hope that I could be someone’s hero someday. And until that someday comes, I will be my own hero—the best version of myself. The version that gets up after getting pushed to the ground, wipes off the dirt, and tries again. The version that chooses to qualify people before I disqualify them. The version that speaks life and not death. The version that understands that I can’t save the world, but I can make a dent of a difference if I’m diligent in what God has called me to do and who He has called me to be. I hope that you’re able to find people to invite into your life that can set a heroic example for you as well. All good heroes need a team of other heroes to make them superheroes!


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This Is Living

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It’s a known fact that there is a magazine called EASY LIVING. Personally, I believe they should have called it Easier Living. While life should be loved, and lived to the fullest, I don’t necessarily think ‘easy’ means better. Sometimes easy means careless and aimless. I don’t believe that life should be careless or aimless, rather it should be filled with purpose and adventure! Helen Keller once wrote:

‘Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.’

And oh how I totally get what she’s saying. This past week, my world has definitely turned upside down, but I’ve felt incredible peace in the midst of the chaos. My mother has been in the hospital with some serious medical struggles and it’s not easy to be miles and miles away, unable to really “DO” anything about it but pray and encourage her to keep fighting. Even as I’ve offered to fly home, relatives and doctors have assured me that there is no need and that things are getting better. She’s not 100% free of medical problems, but the red flags are definitely lowering. I give all the credit to God and the many prayers of friends/family members. One of the things that I have noticed a change in during the course of this ‘peaceful’ chaos is that my tendency to give up and expect only the worst has subsided.

Growing up was tough and left me with a mindset that “things can only get worse.” Yet through this trying season I find myself ever hopeful and believing for the best. There are definitely moments when my mind starts to get overcrowded with anxious thoughts but I pause, breathe deep, and then (honestly) repeat to myself:

 

 

Then I start recounting all of the moments that God redeemed the tough situations and proved faithful. I think back to the time I was in the hospital due to a UTI after contracting E.Coli from Guatemala. I was in a dark place, near the end of my rope—lifeless and hopeless. Then God broke through my darkness and gave me the strength and courage to reach out. He redeemed the time then and He continues to do it now.

I think back to the time I was near-death after a routine wisdom tooth extraction with an outrageous outcome. I remembered the people and the prayers that surrounded me. And I remind myself that the very same God that carried me through that season can carry me and my family through this one. He’s actually REALLY good at that. Whether we choose to allow Him to diminish the demons that ransack our hearts and minds, He is constantly making Himself available to us . . . until that moment where we throw in the towel and allow Him to show up.

I realize that not every situation has a happy ending, but I’ve been able to see some pretty significant fingerprints of God in these current circumstances. Whether things get brighter or darker, my song will be the same of Daniel 3:18. There will be no snuggling with my demons during this ‘peaceful’ chaos!

Today's #DoOverBook Challenge Craft: Some fuzzy minion friends to share with my real friends!


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Halfway to Heaven

DOC
A single minute can change your entire life.
Can you imagine what could happen in 100?
Welcome to the 10-Day Do Over Challenge, a small adventure with big possibilities.
Inside this PDF are ten challenges . . . . The hope is that ten minutes of motivation will turn into additional minutes of hustle. 
Don’t read ahead and don’t try to do all the challenges in a day. Cramming all ten into a single afternoon would be like trying to do an entire diet in one day. You’d end up eating ten days’ worth of kale in one sitting and wouldn’t get any healthier in the process. (By the way, kale chips taste like pages of a burnt novel. Someone had to say it.)
Life is too short for long introductions. Let’s go!

— Jon Acuff, creator of the 10-Day Do Over Challenge

 

I'm excited to join Jon Acuff in the 10-day #DoOverBook Challenge!

I’m excited to join Jon Acuff in the 10-day #DoOverBook Challenge!

 

Six days ago I accepted a challenge to take on a “Do Over.” The cool thing is that it actually flows into my theme for the year: RECLAIM.

Today's #DoOverBook Challenge Craft: Creating a huge Bible for our Exploring The Bible series at 2Twelve, out of a couch box, kraft paper, spray paint, paint and masking tape. :O

Today’s #DoOverBook Challenge Craft: Creating a huge Bible for our Exploring The Bible series at 2Twelve, out of a couch box, kraft paper, spray paint, paint and masking tape. :O

When I was a young girl, art class was one of my favorites! I loved making pottery, drawing, creating statues out of everyday pieces, and oil painting (oh baby, that was pure delight!). I also really enjoyed arts and crafts for in-school projects. You know, creating murals, helping to design the bulletin board for the teacher for extra credit, and making Valentine’s Day paper sacks to hang at the front of the class. While I always gave my best effort and enjoyed expressing myself creatively through those artistic means, there were always a couple of girls who were better than me.

DOB2

Crafted some fun little fortune cookies today for my #DoOverBook Challenge. :D

They were more popular than I was, so their work got the most Oooohs and Aaahhhs. They used expensive, high-quality materials, while I used the basic Wal-Mart rip-offs of everything. In Elementary School, I decided that I just didn’t have what it takes to be an artist because my work would never be as great as those girls. No one really appreciated my cardboard box and construction paper board game for the Math Class project. They were too busy being blown away by the hand-carved wooden slat and magnet games created by the popular girls. I was dumb enough back then to believe that my work was, and would always be sub-par.

Today's #DoOverBook Challenge Craft: Custom letters to send home to the Fam Bam! ♥

Today’s #DoOverBook Challenge Craft: Custom letters to send home to the Fam Bam! ♥

Tragically, I carried much of that mentality along with me into adulthood and began to see most everything I did in light of the great masterpieces of those who “had what it took.” So when the Do-Over Challenge came, I almost passed it up, thinking I didn’t stand a chance at doing anything meaningful. Still, I sucked it up and put on my brave face, and dared to reclaim the inner-artist I had left behind in Elementary Class. I decided that my Do-Over would involve reclaiming my love for arts ‘n’ crafts. Now 6 days in, I’m realizing just how much freedom and life I feel when I am doing simple arts ‘n’ craft projects. With each project, I’m challenged to think creatively and find purpose for the finished product.

Today's #DoOverBook Challenge Craft: Beaded bracelets for my little love bug nieces! ♥

Today’s #DoOverBook Challenge Craft: Beaded bracelets for my little love bug nieces! ♥

I’m really glad I took on the challenge and I’m looking forward to reclaiming even more of the simple joys I left behind in boxes of shame and hurt as this year passes. I know they can only bring bright and beautiful things, because that’s what I see in each of these projects I’ve taken on thus far!

It feels so good to be crafting again! ♥ #DoOverBook

It feels so good to be crafting again! ♥ #DoOverBook

 

What about you? Is there something you’d like to Do Over? Or at least begin to Do Over for 10 days? If so, head on over HERE and take the 10-Day Do Over Book Challenge!

 

Today's #DoOverBook Challenge Craft: Some fuzzy minion friends to share with my real friends!

Today’s #DoOverBook Challenge Craft: Some fuzzy minion friends to share with my real friends!

These fellas lit up the sky   like pros! One of them even lit up his sleeve for a few minutes on accident :O


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BANG BANG | Reclaiming 2015!

Happy 2015 to you and your family!

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2014 was a great year for me, and I’m looking forward to an equally fulfilling 2015. Instead of setting a big resolution each year, I choose to focus on one word and let it become my theme for life choices throughout the year. Last year, my word was WHOLEHEARTED. I took concepts from Brené Brown’s book, The Gifts of Imperfection and divided them up into specific monthly focuses. I won’t be doing the same this year—I’m going to change it up. I’m also going to be blogging more often. I find it completely therapeutic and empowering to use my written voice on this platform and I’m hoping you’ll stick around to watch the fireworks. ;)

Me and one of my housemates, ready to ring in the new year!

Me and one of my housemates, ready to ring in the new year!

 

As I spent time this Fall asking God for a word to challenge and carry me through this year, the resounding answer came around the end of November. That word is . . .

Reclaim Banner

[RECLAIM]

  • To get back (something that was lost or taken away)
  • To make available for use by changing its condition
  • To get a usable material from materials that have been used before
  • To rescue from an undesirable state
  • To restore to a previous natural state
  • To regain possession of

I realize it’s a broad word, but I feel in my heart that it is the perfect next season for me. It’s already creating an expectancy and spark of faith for the things that will come in 2015. I’m not saying I’m going to be a millionaire or that I’m going to hike the planet for a year. What I am saying is that I am expecting God to change the landscape of my heart and open up new doors for exciting adventures to help me reclaim things that have been lost or damaged along the way in my life. That could mean relationships, traditions, mindsets, occupational perspectives, etc. All that to say that I am excited for the brave things I’ll have to face, the mountains I’ll have to climb, the new experiences I’ll embark on, and all the life lessons I’ll learn along the way this year. Stay tuned . . . it may be a bumpy ride, but I’m believing that the person I will be on the other end of this year will be worth the ride!

 

Celebrating with friends is a great way to kick off the first few moments of 2015!

Celebrating with friends is a great way to kick off the first few moments of 2015!

 

As a way to usher in this exciting new year, I was able to join some friends of mine as we celebrated friendship, counted down to a brand new year, and lit up the sky with fireworks and hopes for a better year ahead! Here are some of the pics from that night:

 

Getting ready to ring in the new year with some praise and worship . . . then on to the fireworks!

Getting ready to ring in the new year with some praise and worship . . . then on to the fireworks!

Our gracious host giving us an explanation and the opportunity to write on some of the mortars that we'd be blowing up, to signify blowing  up 2014!

Our gracious host giving us an explanation and the opportunity to write on some of the mortars that we’d be blowing up, to signify blowing up 2014!

These fellas lit up the sky   like pros! One of them even lit up his sleeve for a few minutes on accident :O

These fellas lit up the sky like pros! One of them even lit up his sleeve for a few minutes on accident :O

We also got to celebrate our host's birthday at the party!

We also got to celebrate our host’s birthday at the party!

 

Enjoying a sweet time of Praise & Worship at last night’s New Years Eve Party!

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