Friday, February 05, 2016

5 favorite things this february


i love baked goods. fresh tulips. sunlight. and speaking of my favorite things...



my playlist lately is all andy mineo and hollyn. i love a good beat and a solid Jesus rap and these artists bring BOTH! check out "uncomfortable" by andy mineo. my son especially digs andy mineo. listen to the lyrics. he's a bold-truth rhyme artist. AND have you heard hollyn's "alone" on the radio? so good. my current favorite song of hers is "nothin' on you." the amy grant sample makes me smile like it's 1991. i feel a special affinity towards hollyn because we share an unexpected Y in our names and a left eyebrow with a mind of it's own.



the other day a friend asked me if i was currently doing a bible study, and it occurred to me that, for the first time in a while, i'm not. but that doesn't mean i'm not getting QT w/ JC. it's just that, for this season, doing my own thing is working. currently i'm reading and studying the book of Revelation using fill-in-the-blank worksheets i found online. i'm also writing scripture daily, loving this day-by-day plan from ACookieBeforeDinner.com. the downside to not being in a formal bible study is no accountability. the upside is, my heart is getting good at keeping me accountable. my heart can tell when i'm not spending time in the Word. thankful. 



these flourless banana chocolate chip muffins taste even better than they look. trust me i just had 2 of them. the recipe is HERE from RunningwithSpoons.com. i used vanilla Greek yogurt, egg whites only, and regular sized milk chocolate chips. they were pretty simple to make and turned out so delicious! they taste like a healthy muffin but not in a bad way. my kids still counted it as dessert. :) a nice treat to help us avoid the full-sugar frosting-slathered cupcakes leftover from my daughter's birthday party.



chiseled. i like that word so much better than skinny. the masters hammer & chisel is fast becoming one of my favorite things. hammer & chisel is one of the new exercise programs from beachbody. it's mostly weight lifting, muscle toning, and strengthening. it comes with meal planning guide and portion control containers so that your intake is perfect for your output. the workouts are short but effective. call me crazy but i look forward to pressing play and being pushed to and beyond my physical limits. i don't necessarily like doing squats, but i definitely like looking down at my legs and seeing strong, defined muscles. Crystal, my friend and fellow TBFC coach, shared her review of hammer & chisel and her before and after photos here: http://crystalstine.me/what-is-hammer-chisel/



five years ago this week we had a few inches of snow on the ground here in dallas. (thanks for the memory, Facebook!) it's sunny and 59 here today, and i am not complaining. it's nice enough to open the windows and let the crisp air fill the house. the cool afternoons are prime time for a london fog: my new favorite hot drink. the recipe i like is 1 cup of hot brewed earl grey black tea with about 1/4 cup of hot unsweetened vanilla almond milk blended in, plus a drop of vanilla extract and a drop of honey. i'm calling this THE drink of february 2016.





God bless you and keep you, God smile on you and gift you, 
God look you full in the face and make you prosper. 
(numbers 6:24-26)

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Thursday, January 14, 2016

fresh beginnings + my word for 2016




it's mid-january already. you know how i know? i started getting weepy this morning when i realized my daughter turns 11 in just two short-and-certain-to-fly-by weeks. we've had beautiful sunshiny 50-degree days, which is wonderful but also scary because does that mean a "real" winter is coming?

but the beautiful sunshiny days feel appropriate for the start of the new year. the air feels crisp and fresh and clean and new. 


i like to frame the year ahead with a word and set goals for different areas of my life. my word for 2016 is strength. i landed on it after considering both brave and joy, and decided strength is a good combination of those two words and what i want to get out of them: stronger. plus, it pairs nicely with some of my goals for the year, which include sticking with my workouts, keeping fit, eating healthy, and staying all around well. and all of that takes strength. the word just works for me on so many levels. my 2016 anthem is "warrior" by steven curtis chapman. 

i love how the new year offers fresh beginnings. a chance to look ahead and reset. an opportunity to name a new normal. time to change perspective a little bit and go forward with intention. an invitation to make the most of it.



when i put the christmas decorations away, i arranged our every day decor a little bit differently. partly because i forgot where things were before christmas, but partly because i read once that making slight changes in your scenery triggers your brain to recall something. a sock purposely placed on the floor in the middle of the hallway before bed can serve as a reminder in the morning to take dinner out of the freezer. 

my picture frames and vases and lamps and nicknacks set in different places than usual will hopefully catch my eye and remind me. a bouquet of pinecones and winter red roses blooming on my dining room table make me remember it's mid-january. it's a fresh beginning. it's my year of strength.  



“Have you never heard? Have you never understood? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of all the earth. He never grows weak or weary. No one can measure the depths of his understanding. He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless. Even youths will become weak and tired, and young men will fall in exhaustion. But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.”
(isaiah 40:28-31)


do you have a word for 2016?


here's to fresh beginnings and a blessed year ahead. make the most of it! 

{floral arrangement from proflowers.com}

xxx