Thursday, December 26, 2013


Hey everybody!  
First off, I wanted to say . . . MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!
Secondly, thanks for being patient with me as I skipped the last two Tuesdays of blogging.  (like I've said before: life happens!) :)
Thirdly, I've got an announcement to make concerning this blog:
Since last....let me see...was it March???  I've been trying to keep up with blogging once a week on Tuesdays which has been super good for me, but now with 2014 coming on, graduation coming up, and more school/work/life to do, I'm gunna have to say goodbye to 

Thanks to all of you faithful 'Keep Calm and Tuesday On' readers, and for all of your awesome comments!  
Loves to you all, and God bless!
I'll talk to ya again soon!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

My Christmas To Do list

(almost) 2 weeks until Christmas, and still no snow!  :(  
Oh well!  In the foothills, we kinda live in a pocket to where we can see the whiteness covers the mountains, but never (ever) get any ourselves...
Here is my to do list for the rest of the season:

Lady Fingers, Cheese Pennies, Sausage Balls, Reese's Cups, cookies....yup.  I'm gunna be busy, and the house is going to smell goooooood!

Ugh.  gotta finish it up by this Friday....(maybe...I can't find a testing center near me that administers Dantes tests!! HELP!)

Deck the halls with LOTS of boughs of holly (and evergreen :)

We are doing a new thing this year:

Everyone draws a name from a hat (or cheap plastic cup) and whoever's name we get, we make or buy presents for.  I drew Ben's name this time, so I've gotta figure out what to get him.  I really like the idea of filling a big bag with boyish odds and ends, and what's nice is that stores generally carry a bunch of little doodads that an 11 year old would love ;)

Guess what's coming up tomorrow evening in Asheville?!?!  THE MOSCOW BALLET is performing the NUTCRACKER!!!  I've never been to a real ballet before, so I'm super stoked about this thing!  

So much to do, and yet I still managed to get sick with a sore throat and fever yesterday :(

Oh well, I'm sure I'll be better by tomorrow night....I don't think anything could keep me away from the Nutcracker

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Gearing up for the Holidays

Being on Thanksgiving break has afforded me the opportunity to blog a bit earlier nice :)  
I've got a question; what kind of feeling do you get when you see this picture?

I know for me, it brings a nostalgic feeling that reminds me of cinnamon, warmth, jingle bells, Christmas songs, red and green, hot chocolate, snow, sitting by the fire in my pajamas reading a book, and the smell of Christmas trees. 
I don't know what it is, but this year I just absolutely can not wait for the whole Christmas season to start.  
Actually, I take that back....I think I do know why.  Over the last 2 years or so, amidst all of the craziness, God became a reality for me, and you know what is crazy?  After thinking (and I mean really thinking) about whether I believed what I said I believed or not, I came to realize that for the longest time, I had been riding on my parent's beliefs and not making them my own.  Yes, I knew all of the right answers to the Shorter Catechism, and Bible stories, but I think that's all they were to me; just stories.  Ya know, that word, stories, can get to you after a while - you can almost start to think of truths as fables.  I did without even realizing it.  

Well, I had always heard that at some point in your walk with Christ, you would have this moment when you come to a crossroads that made you decide to either follow Him fully, or follow the world. 
I guess I was expecting a huge defining life crisis that would bring me to this point, but that's not what happened with me.  
It really has been a gradual process within the past 2 years that God has been super kind in taking me through.  It's a cool thing to be able to say:
"I am not the same person that I was even 2 months ago."
He continues to sanctify me daily (and let me clarify something.  None of this is because of anything that I've's God waking up my dead heart!)
and so that is (the long version :) why I think that I am looking forward to Christmas this year more than ever before.  I believe that I am finally beginning to understand and be thankful for the this season of celebrating Christ's birth.  

Oh!  Haha.  Why am I talking about Christmas, when Thanksgiving hasn't even come yet!?!  (some of my family members would shoot me....NO Christmas until after Thanksgiving type of thing....)
SO, I want to end this post with Thanksgiving.  I've got a huge list of things that I'm thankful for, 10 of which I'll list here:

1. Salvation
2. My family 
3. That group of guys from our Church who came over this past weekend to help us work on our basement

4. Christmas
5. My new iPhone that I got for 99¢ (whoohoo!)
6. All of the family that will be coming over for Thanksgiving (can't wait guys!)
7. Cozy, icy, gray weather like this

8. Friends
9. The chance to relax and think about plans for the future
10. The fact that I have never been in any REAL need of anything.  

In America, we are blessed more than I think we'll ever know or truly realize.  
What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Log Cabin Weekend

In our Church, we have a Titus 2 woman who has been super good to a group of us girls in teaching a Bible study on Romans over the Summer which has benefited us all so much!  
This past weekend, our study group went up to one of the girl's families cabin and kind of did a recap on the study, sharing what had impacted us the most, as well as spending time with each other, hiking and so forth :)  
I'm so grateful for this group of fun, but solid people who get together to both enjoy each other and keep one another accountable!

"Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another."
~Provers 27:17

Breakfast - best meal of the juice, hot chocolate, eggs, Pillsbury Doughboy biscuits, sausage and fruit!  Can you get any better than that?!?
 Sitting on the porch in PJ's to talk until lunch time...

Hiking up to 'the bald' on the border of Tennessee and North Carolina.

In our Bible study, we divided the book into 5 main sections: 
Sin, Salvation, Sanctification, Sovereignty, and Service.  
sooo, this is us on top of a mountain, demonstrating the 5 different sections in Romans:

What can I say?  It was awesome!!!  

Tuesday, November 5, 2013


Brrrrr.....It's just now gotten somewhat chilly here in the mountains - so exciting!!!  
Yesterday I spent most of the day up in Asheville, and while I'd like to say that I shopped long and hard with Mom at Trader Joe's and Target, I've gotta admit that I stayed in the car pretty much the whole time trying to study for yet another CLEP test.  (actually I'm not a big shopper, so I guess I couldn't have said that anyways :P)
But it was fun getting to wear my fuzzy boots for the first time this season, finding an awesome CD for only $5 at a used book/CD store, and seeing a few early Christmas lights that evening on the drive home.

Speaking of Christmas, I absolutely CAN NOT WAIT!  Everything about it just seems to special to me this year for some reason.  

{here is a sneak peak of one of our Christmas card pictures that we'll be sending out sometime this December} 

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

For consistency's sake, I'm blogging tonight, but I've gotta warn you - It's nothing special.  I've got only 2 days to try to cram a whole College Algebra course in before I don't get credit for any of it, so I'm off to studying again!  
до свидания

{google images}

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

It's Fall!

It's Fall!!!

{Cooler Weather}
{Hikes in the Mountains}
{Fall Festivals}

ahh....don't ya just LUV it???

Tuesday, October 15, 2013


As Christians, we tend to hear the expression "trust in the Lord" a lot, but like the popular saying goes, "familiarity breeds contempt." 
Not that trusting God becomes necessarily contemptible, but often when we are used to hearing something everyday, it sometimes tends to get blown off. 

In my devotions, I've started to explore more about the whole concept of trust, and what the Bible's definition of it is, so I wanted to share something that I found to be really thought-provoking that I came across while I was studying:

Using Job 13:15 - "Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him; I will surely defend my ways to his face.  Indeed, this will turn out for my deliverance, for no godless man would dare come before him!"
Matthew Henry commentates:
"Trust in God, though He slay us, that is, we must be well pleased with God as a friend even when He seems to come forth as an enemy, we must believe that all shall work for the good to us even when all seems to make against us.  We must proceed and persevere in the way of our duty, though it cost us all that is dear to us in this world, even life itself.  We must depend on the performance of the promise when all ways leading to it are shut up.  We must rejoice in God when we have nothing else to rejoice in, and cleave to him, yea, though we cannot for the present find comfort in Him.  In a dying hour we must derive from Him living comforts; and this is to trust in Him though He slay us."

Actually, someone wrote a song based on that verse....super neat:


Had a photoshoot with these two gals.  So much fun!  

Sweet dreams everybodeeeee!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Well, Tuesday is already gone (hey!  life happens...) so I might as well just put a 'Picture of the Week' up just to say that I did something!  :)
But yet again, iPhone pictures (that I didn't even take) will have to suffice.  (It's not the most convenient thing to lug a big ol camera up a mountain....I'm always worried that I might drop it over the cliff or something :P )
We went hiking this past Sunday afternoon with a group of kids from our Church up to Table Rock - nothing like hiking in Fall weather, eh?  :D

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Keep Calm and Tuesday On - Concert at Smokey Mountain Center for the Performing Arts

This past Sunday, I had the privilege of accompanying Mom to the Smokey Mountain Center for the Performing Arts in Franklin, NC.  She is the background vocalist in Lori Sealy's new CD, 

They were doing a benefit concert for the Smokey Mountain Pregnancy Care Center, and I must say . . . it was a super good one (as always)
The next group to perform there will be Third Day - pretty cool, huh?

The place was legit!  With the big light bulbs surrounding all the mirrors in the women's break room, and everything!  It all felt so professional :)

Mom, Lori Sealy, and Charlie (the percussionist)

I'm so proud of my family :)

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Keep Calm and Tuesday On - Carowinds

Heeellllooooo everybody!  Man, I have been just pumped full of energy today; I don't know what is up with me????  I can't seem to sit still for very long, and so consequently this post is not going to be very profound ... or lengthy.  :P 
All I've got for youz guys this week are some iPhone pictures from our trip to Carowinds this past Saturday, which was a blast!

Poor Ben....This was his first time to ever ride a big roller coaster.  He looks kinda sick.  
{But!  He ended up riding almost every, single coaster in the park for the rest of the day.  Such a trooper}

For lunch, we had an all American meal of hot dogs, fried chicken and beans....not the best idea for going on loop-the-loops afterwards, but anyways... 
{Uummm....what other kind of ketchup is there????}
And then for dinner, we ate Chinese.  
Best part of Chinese food is the *Fortune Cookie*!!!
{What a letdown}

What a good weekend that was!

Now I've got a whole new week full of school, apple picking, birthday celebrating, and brothers coming home from a big fishing trip with even BIGGER stories, to look forward to :) 
I couldn't ask for a better week!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

KC&TO - All I Have is Christ

"All I Have is Christ." 
- This video truly does not need an explanation or description.  It is super, and I hope it moves you just as much as it did me. - 

Dad took Caelen and I out on a mini excursion to work on some retaining walls with him, and you know what I took along for the ride???
Camera + Book