I recently purchased my third mug tree because I'd collected one too many for two mug trees to hold. Then, I got another mug for Christmas and I ordered a mug from Ali Edwards' shop. I also had/have my eye on a couple other mugs from Anthropologie (a great place to find delightful coffee mugs).
I've collected most of my mugs over the past few years, but, a couple are particularly - older. My WSR-88D OSF mug was purchased in 1993. When I attended the Weather Surveillance Radar (Doppler) course in Norman, Oklahoma in the summer of 1993 I bought a memento; something that would be useful. For the next 10 years or so I used that mug, exclusively, for work and at work. I still have it, but rarely use it now. Mostly, because I no longer 'use' the weather radar like I used to. It is disheartening not being able to interrogate the radar, so I don't need the reminder of something lost but I cannot get rid of the mug.
Blues and turquoise mugs catch my eye, now. But, funny sayings, and tigers, and places I've been also are searched out to be included in my collection with the caveat that I am selective - and picky.
When I decided to create an All About Me album in 2018 I knew it would mean I needed to step out of my comfort zone and include photos of myself that I would not under any circumstances share - normally. Although I adore the content of these pages - i.e. I am pistol shooting! - there is nothing about 'me' that I like.
Except, I am happy!
No matter how else I look, or see myself, that is a really good thing.
It had been two months since we'd been pistol shooting so I was siked we were going again for a date night. I tried the SIG SAUER P938 and it is my pistol of choice now, and my first pistol purchase I am planning. This was a great night for both Jeff and I. We shot good and learned some thing's we needed to work on for next time.
Obviously, the pages were centered on the photos. Our instructors ran us through different scenarios that were a lot of fun and challenging. We had a ball!
Digitally, this is a 2-page 6 x 8 spread (my All About Me album is 6 x 8) and I exclusively used Ali Edwards' Story kits.
Today I am sharing another spread for the album, All About Me. This is a 2018 album - about me. It isn't selfish. It is self analyzing. It is sharing about me. It is what is in my heart and mind.
This page is the sounds I love to hear...
I was hesitant to title the page with something seemingly negative. But, when I pondered the words I realized that I do love the sound of my feet metaphorically walking away from things that are not meant for me; negative emotions and thoughts; bad attitudes and habits; relationships that are toxic...and walking towards what is good and true and lovely.
Today I'm sharing 8 little January favorites. Writing down the bones of this first month of the year put the entire month into perspective.
It was a really good month.
Little fabulous joys (in no particular order):
Pistol shooting with Jeff. Date nights are fabulous even if it is simply conversation and dinner out because we're both exhausted, or don't have much time. Dinner and a movie doesn't happen regularly because movies today are usually not our cup of tea. But, date nights that involve our local pistol shooting course is the bomb! This month I found my pistol, too! I mean the one I'm going to save for.
Reading the mentoring book, Adorned by Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth and putting what I read almost immediately into action by mentoring a younger woman. In the first chapter the reader is asked to participate and asked to name someone I could mentor. I noted two names; this was on a Thursday; and the very next Sunday one of those names asked if we could begin meeting together. Totally, God! And, we're meeting at this charming and quaint little coffee shop in Pooler, The Front Porch.
Finding out I was moved from the waiting list to a GO team to Austria, a short term mission trip to Haus Edelweiss, partnering with Training Christians for Ministry (TCM) at their training center. It is an almost two weeks service oriented trip, being the hands and feet of Jesus. We will be serving the students who are missionaries and pastors around the world. I am so excited! I have wanted to be apart of this trip for years and just never signed up because...well, health reasons, mostly. But, even though my health is not perfect I'm trusting God I'll be capable. He doesn't call the equipped. He equips the called. But, a GO short term mission trip isn't the only January fav; we invited a young couple into our home for dinner as we begin our partnership with them, supporting them financially and prayerfully and any other way God speaks to us. We shared our table and had wonderful easy conversation.
Beginning Financial Peace University. I know, right? Who wants to take a class on finances? Although the class is tough in the sense we have to get down to the nitty gritty with our finances, it is amazing, too, because we have to get down to the nitty gritty with our finances!
John starting college for his welding certificates. I can't even say enough how excited I am to see his excitement. We are hearing such great things about 'after college' with certificates in hand, job opportunities. He seems to be staying on his class work and online class work, too. A year of working, saving money (even if it was us saving his money for him), now driving everywhere has grown him so much.
Savannah had snow. And, not just a few flurries, but, measurable snow. It is like a dream come true. While I did not like driving on the icy from freezing rain, snow-packed covered roads, I adored the untouched white blanket of snow covering the grounds.
Wearing scarves. Even just a couple years ago I would never wear scarves because I was always hot and scarves exacerbated the discomfort. However, this past fall and winter I have been cold during 'normal' periods of cold, when I should be cold because it is cold outside, and scarves have been keeping me warm - in a good way. I have quite the selection of scarves and I not only wear them for warmth but style as well. I'm thrilled to have these wardrobe accessories that can make an outfit pop.
Bible study with Ashley. We started David: A Heart Like His by Beth Moore in the fall. We FaceTime weekly, for our study after we've completed the week's homework. It has been wonderful. Glorious! We take an hour to go through that week and, of course, to chat. Usually one or all of my grandsons make an appearance, sneaking their little faces into the phone's camera if only to say hi and I love you.
To finish it off:
I made a 2-page, 6 x 8 spread plus 2, 3 x 8 inserts that I will insert back to back between the 6 x 8's. Everything was completed using Photoshop Elements and products by Ali Edwards Design.
18 years. I have been doing Beth Moore Bible studies since 2000. While I haven't completed all of her published studies I have, however completed several of the studies multiple times over the years. My favorites are listed above.
James, Mercy Triumphs is my all-time favorite. It is the first study Beth did where she also memorized the entire book of James and encouraged me to begin memorizing larger chunks of scripture - and believing that I could memorize larger chunks of scripture, too. While I haven't memorized the entire book I did complete the first chapter and with only 5 chapters in the book I think it is most certainly doable, and I still hope that I will commit the book of James to memory.
Daniel is another favorite. I've completed the study three times but it is one of my top studies because this is the first Beth Moore study John, Jarrod, and I did together and they rocked at completing Bible studies. So much so that at the end of the study they could explain what each chapter of Daniel was about (from memory) and what were the lessons learned.
Esther is a favorite because it is Ashley and my first study together. When Ashley asked if we could do Bible study together I was blown away excited and Esther made sense for us to begin with. We loved it! I was so excited by how much understanding she gleaned from her first study ever. Wise beyond her Bible study years.
Today I am sharing my Project Life, Week 3 pages. This is week 3 of 52 weeks in our life. I realized as I was putting these pages together that it would be easier if I didn't stress over the specific day of the week, but that 'something' just happened during this week and, unless it's really important, it doesn't matter if it occurred on a Tuesday or a Wednesday or a Saturday or a Sunday. Thus, this weeks pages (which I'll make next week) will be designed and recorded differently, and hopefully, simpler.
I kept the pages uniform using the tags across the middle + days of the week for the journaling. Then each photo received a piece of chipboard embellishment. Simple.
While I did a terrible job of documenting our week, as in, I couldn't remember our week from exhaustion and one day over the next, I do, however, still love this project and hopefully will continue it throughout the year.
Today I'm sharing another two-page, 6 x 8 from our trip to north Georgia. This story was from our first night, when we drove into Dahlonega, Georgia (about 18 miles from Amicalola Falls Lodge where we were staying) for dinner at a pizza joint on the square that had decent reviews on Trip Advisor, which is where I visit when we are planning any trip, jaunt, or vacation.
The photo provides the reminder. But, it is the story that gave us the laughter.
Told you it was funny.
The other day I was sharing this story with some friends and realized I hadn't documented it. I knew I wanted the whole story and not just a quick journal blurb recorded. So, I gave the story its full due. This was so much fun!
It's the rush of the water. It's the cool spray as the waters come crashing down the side of the mountain. It's the beauty before us. It's the exhilarating feeling because we hiked in to see, we were intentional about making an adventure to last a lifetime. It's Jeff by my side every step of the way, holding my hand, keeping me safe when I stumble, slowing down to my pace, yet encouraging me with every jaunt closer to our destination. It's feeling alive and excited at being afforded this opportunity to get away, to refresh, to bask in the beauty of the mountains of north Georgia, knowing with each scene before us that God is good.
Digitally: Another 2-page, 6 x 8 from our November 2017, birthday trip to Amicalola Falls. This one is a smattering of photos from our hike to the falls. I wanted to capture the feeling - and the fun - we had onto the pages. I think I did!