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Friday, February 27, 2015

Let's sing our ABC's

I've seen this little gem floating around the blog world and love the idea of it. What better way for people to get to know you a little better! So without further ado...
a | animal// My sweet boys
b | beauty product// It's A 10 hair products. They make my hair so easy to manage when I need to brush it or style it. Also, dry shampoo is my jam. Did ya'll see Cassie's post about different dry shampoos?
c | color// Hmm... what color am I coveting right now? Right now I'm loving anything minty green. Maybe I'm just trying to channel the Spring season.
d | drink// Ya'll should know the answer to this. I'll give you a minute to guess... Sweet tea!
e | exercise// HA! Ya'll are so funny! Okay okay, I'm trying (read: failing) to get back into running. I swear my life moves a million miles a minute so I'm having a bit of a struggle trying to find the time to do said running. Pray for me.
f | flower// Sunflowers
g | game// I like Catch Phrase or Bananograms.
h | human// Jesus. Then Hunter. But mostly Jesus.
i | instrument// I wish! Learning how to play the piano is on my bucket list to do before I die.
Here's a major flashback of Hunter playing the guitar
j | job// What can I say, I love my job!
k | karaoke song// Ha! I don't do karaoke. I wouldn't want people's ears to bleed.
l | lunch// Is it lunch time yet?! I love me some good ole Chick-Fil-A - yummy!
m | movie// I have lots of favorites! I love a good action movie or comedy or RomCom. Every now and then I can watch war movies (they're just so sad to me) but I absolutely cannot do scary movies. I will have nightmares for days people!
n | number// I'm going to go with number 77 because I'm special like that.
o | object// Would this be my favorite object? Can I pick 2? I would say my bible and my wedding rings. Both mean so much to me and are items that I treasure daily.
p | picture// I would say this describes me perfectly...
 q | quote// "I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made." Psalms 139:14
r | restaurant// I'm a lover of anything Italian so I would have to say our local Italian restaurant, Village Pizza.

s | season// I used to be all about that summer. Then I became all about that fall/winter. Now I'm all about that spring. So I think it's safe to say, I like them all for their different reasons!

t | trend// I'm not a huge trend follower - I'm all about being comfortable in my own style. I will have to say, I love a good pair of jeans and cowboy boots with a ball cap. That's my go-to comfortable outfit.

u | underwear// That's for my husband to know and for ya'll to never find out...

v | vacation// Right now we're saving up for a couple of things - this summer we'll be traveling with our youth students to a camp retreat. Then later in the year, we're going to Disney World with another couple. I'm honestly so excited I could just pee my underwear that ya'll will never know about (see letter "u" if you're confused)!

w | writer// Mmmm now that is tough. I have a lot of favorite writers in all different genres.

x | x-tra favorite// Anything dipped in chocolate - bananas, strawberries, marshmallows, my fingers....

y | year// This year! I'm trying to live in the present and enjoy each moment as they come.

z | zodiac sign// I'll give you a couple of hints: My sign lives in the ocean, is the fourth astrological sign, and unfortunately, a disease.

I hope ya'll have a fun, warm weekend!

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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

DIY Wall Wood Art

So I clearly have an obsession desire for palettes. And really, anything wood. I just love the rustic look, feel, flair, and country bumpkin pizazz it can bring into a room. I was perusing Pinterest, trying to find something that I could make. I stumbled upon some inspiration and decided to run with it.
A quick note before I jump into the steps of the project... Ladies... Appreciate your man. If your man helps you with these said Pinterest projects, shower him with lots and lots of kisses. Because let me just tell ya'll, it's hard work. Now this is coming from a dreamer-my-husband-does-the-work kind of person. Hunter was kind enough (and brave enough) to teach me how to use the saw, and set up the design. Thank you for teaching me valuable skills!
Onto the project....
We still have some palettes lying around from my last Pinterest project so I decided to start there. Rather than trying to painfully remove the nails from the boards, the boards from the palette, I got the bright idea of sawing them off.

 I first sawed (is that correct usage??) along the middle, cutting each one away from the frame of the palette.
Once the middle had been cut free, I worked on the outside. Hunter actually did most of the outside for me because honestly, my little twig arms were about to just fall off.
Now you will have nice little planks and no residue of curse words lingering in the air. God is good. I took 2 of the uglier pieces of wood and used them as the backing for my wall piece. I spaced them as such so that they measured roughly 10 inches across the backside.

Once I had the desired wood backings in place, I nailed the first piece of wood across the both of them at the top. I like the idea of "unevenness" so I skewed each row of boards.
And that's it! You can nail hooks on the backing for hanging, or leave as is to lean against the wall. Truth: I haven't painted mine yet because I've got a couple of ideas in my head. Once we move, I'll be able to decide where I want to place this beauty, thus paint desired saying on it. Super easy craft and adorable!

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Monday, February 23, 2015

Grateful Heart

Happy last Monday of February friends! I hope each of you had a relaxing, fun, productive weekend. I was able to get a lot of deep cleaning done on Saturday while Hunter worked, and then Sunday was spent spending time with church family, friends, and designing my wood art project (look for that on Wednesday).
Hunter and I have had a lot of changes going on in our lives that we're very excited about, but also nervous at the same time. Change can be good; change can be nerve-wrecking; change can be necessary. For us, the change has been all of the above and more.
So today, I'm so thankful for changes. I'm thankful that I have my best friend by my side to experience these changes with me, and I'm beyond thankful that we can rely on God to see this through. Yes, we're nervous and there are those moments that we wonder, "Are we capable of doing this?!" And it's in those moments that God whispers little words of affirmation into our very souls and reminds us why we're doing it. 
Grateful Heart w/ Ember Grey

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Friday, February 20, 2015

Friday Fluff

Guys, I know I say this a lot, but time flies. Next week is the last week of February, which means March comes next, which means Sessions starts in the Florida Legislature = no life for Mrs. Thang.
But that's okay! Because it's a beautiful, cold Friday. I've got tons of stuff on my brain so what's the best thing to do with all that mess? List it, people. List it.
  • I have the best husband ever. Seriously! He will go out in the mornings and start my car up for me before work so that when it's time for me to leave, my car is all nice and toasty!
  • Speaking of best husband ever, Hunter and I made the decision earlier this week to answer a calling and we are going to be youth leaders at a very small, country church. We're very excited (and slightly nervous) to be taking this on. It's funny how God works in mysterious ways.
  • My oldest brother is in town and even though I've been going non-stop all week, I'm excited to spend time with him this weekend.
  • I was informed by a reliable source (read: Hunter) the other day that I eat a lot of chocolate. My response: Is there a problem with that??
  • Even though it's a cold Friday, I hear we're supposed to be getting up into the 60's and 70's in temps this weekend. Which means I will be sitting my pasty white self outside and soaking up some vitamin D. Yes, I will wear sunscreen because I'm not all about that skin cancer.
I hope ya'll have a wondrous Friday. Please be praying for my heart the next couple of days as I prepare to lead a group of women Monday night in our first ever meet-up of our women's ministry group. And just because I love ya'll, I have to share this cute pic...

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Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Share the LOVE

I always love hearing and seeing good things happen to people. It makes my heart warm knowing that their lives are changing, big things are happening, and the good Lord is seeing it through. It's also fun to share that good news with others because why not??
Some of our closest friends are expecting! We could not be more excited for them and I personally cannot wait to spoil the crap out of that child. Sorry Mike and SB, it's just part of it. Is that not the cutest announcement ever?!
A very near and dear friend to my heart has taken a leap of faith into photography and ya'll, she is awesome. I'm not just saying that because she's my fraaaannnddd but because she is legit awesome. Her focus is on sports and yea... Ya'll will just have to check out her Instagram and show her some love!
My pups really are best friends... And that is good news right there because it makes our lives that much easier.
That's the look of, "Seriously mom. The sun's not even out."
There are so many great things going on around us that sometimes we forget to take notice. Sometimes, it's so easy to fall into the trap of repetition and take for granted the little wonderful things happening in our lives, and others. Today, take time to notice not only the good in your life but in your friends' and family members' lives. And give them a big hug!

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Monday, February 16, 2015

Busy weekends = honey to my soul

Hello Monday. How have you been?
We had a slam packed weekend, and it was just what my soul needed. Last week was a wonderful week and a rough week, all in the same package. As a community, we experienced the very unexpected losses and funerals of 2 beautiful women. Hunter and I, along with friends, are dealing with the miraculous recovery of a wonderful young girl and trying to be a source of stability that she can lean upon.
On the flip side, we experienced wonderful things last week and this past weekend! Between helping a sweet friend move and start her life at a new apartment, to dancing with my husband at a Saturday night gala, to watching Hunter baptize a youth student on Sunday, God reminded me His mercies are new every day.

On this Monday, I'm beyond grateful for those busy weekends. Slow weekends are nice but a jam-packed weekend was just what I needed to place my focus on different things. It's a new week and I cannot wait to experience it!
Grateful Heart w/ Ember Grey

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Friday, February 13, 2015

These are a few of my favorite things

It's Friday and I'm in a chipper mood because duh, it's Friday. Because of said chipper mood, I'm wanting to share all things that are making me smile...
one:: This guy. His heart for the Lord, his patience with me, and his passion for people. I just can't get enough of him.
two:: We have been invited to attend a gala fundraiser tomorrow evening for Hunter's alumni and I'm just uber excited to have an excuse to get dolled up!
three:: For those who don't know, I'm a bit of a MoFro lover. Never heard of them? For Hunter's birthday last month, I bought tickets to go see them in concert on Sunday. We're excited to be going with some friends and my awesome FIL!
With the crazed madness that's been going around in regards to the release of the scandalous movie 50 Shades of Grey (I'm not even linking this because it already has enough attention), I've read different articles and posts regarding this event. I personally have never read the books (there's more than 1 right??), don't plan on reading the books, and most certainly don't plan on seeing the movie because let's just be honest, I've got a husband that can make me feel a bajillion times more loved and sexy and respected than that loony bird of a man in that book. Elizabeth did a fantastic job summing up the reasons why we should skip out on this movie.
Kind of going off of this 50 Shades of Grey tangent, I read a wonderful post this week by my girl Renee about finding your identity in Christ. Ya'll, go read it. My dear friend Sara Beth also wrote a post on being created in God's image... Love this!
I hope each and every one of ya'll have a great weekend! We certainly have a super busy one ahead of us, but full of wonderful things. Feel free to keep up with us and our adventures via Instagram!
**Update: Friends, last night Hunter and I received some heartbreaking news. I cannot go into details here at the moment but please please PLEASE be in prayer for a beautiful, young woman.**

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Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Women for the Gospel

Happy Wednesday ya'll! This is coming a little later in the morning than usual but hey, life happens and sometimes you've just got to live it. Hunter and I have been invited to be guest speakers tonight for a youth group so we're very excited about that!
A couple weeks ago, I shared an article with ya'll that focuses on the aspect of women's ministry. A friend of mine had shared it with me when I voiced to her my desires to start a women's ministry group. With the details in place, the facebook event created, and the word is out... I wanted to share with ya'll the heart of this ministry.
Women's ministry, as of late, hasn't been getting the best of reputations. And honestly, I'm in agreement with many of those nay-sayers. I have noticed that many, not all, but many women's ministry groups are more focused on the social aspect of it all. Getting together to have breakfast, maybe study the Word, gossip about who is doing what seems to be the norm lately. Now like I said, not all of women's ministry groups are like this; if you're ministry group is out in the community and sharing the Gospel with others, then this doesn't necessarily apply to you.
With this stigma in mind and my passion for people (specifically women and teenage girls), I wanted to create a women's ministry that focused on 3 things:
Love the Lord with all our hearts and intentionally share it with other women in the community.
Come together to study the Word and create a safe haven where we can ask each other the hard questions that nobody wants to ask.
Do life together.
The most important piece of this entire women's ministry is to bring glory to God. If it doesn't do that, then it's a waste of time. Even though we're in "modern times" and women are held to much higher standards than they were several years ago, women still aren't fully regarded as equals in our communities. When you spend time with teenage girls, hear their stories that just absolutely wreck your heart, and find that it's almost considered "normal" because nobody can really do anything about it, then there's a problem.
We need to empower the women in our communities. We need to remind them that they are a child of God, created in His image, beautiful in every way, and that they can rise above the discrimination, abuse, and indifferences towards them. They can take this and share it with their families, teach their children how to live and love like Christ, and empower other women around them.
Clearly, I have a passion for this. Clearly, God has a passion for all the women in this world. When I mentioned being intentional, I meant we will go spend time with people that not a lot of folks want to spend time with because it's uncomfortable. That means women in prison, young mothers in the pregnancy center, the prostitutes and adult entertainment ladies... You name it. We're loving on them.
Friends, I ask that you will pray for this group. We're meeting in a week and a half, and I cannot wait. Pray that we will put the Lord first in everything we say and do. Pray that we will intentionally love each other and others in our communities. Pray that when we do life together and study the Word, it's with open hearts and minds because let's be honest, we all come from different walks of life.
If ya'll have any questions at all, please feel free to leave a comment or email me directly. I have so much passion and love for this ministry and rather than joining all those nay-sayers and doing nothing about it, I want to embrace those nay-sayers and change it for the better. As we meet and continue to share the Gospel, I will share some of the experiences to hopefully encourage others to do the same.

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Monday, February 9, 2015

Grateful for my babies

Happy Monday friends! I'm still trying to wake up and hoping my coffee kicks in soon, so to keep it simple, I'm joining up with my gal Em for some gratefulness.
Grateful Heart w/ Ember Grey

I'm one of those mommas when it comes to her fur babies. I just love my boys! Even though they tend to drive me crazy more times than not, I do love them. Needless to say, between my husband and dogs, I'm surrounded by boys.
Yes, I'm wearing my husband's jacket. What, you do don't that?? #weirdo

See, told ya'll I'm keeping it simple today. We were up late last night watching The Walking Dead.... Just OMG. That show keeps me on the edge of my seat (literally) the whole time. Hunter and I've already got our game plan if zombies start strolling around because, ya know, it could happen #sarcasm. Have a good Monday!

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Friday, February 6, 2015

Oh happy day

It's Friday. 'Nuff said, it's Friday. The first week of February is over and I feel like it's been a whirlwind of craziness. Between family members and friends being diagnosed with cancer or going through surgeries or losing loved ones, friends looking for jobs and going through interviews, and just every day busyness... My prayers have been running high and mighty. Ha!

But I want to focus on the beauty of today and the upcoming weekend plans we have going on. Because, hey, ya never know when today might be your last.

one: Hunter and I are very excited to be stopping by and spending time with our old youth group kids to help them raise money at a fish fry tomorrow. I cannot wait to wrap my arms around some of those kids and just catch up with their lives. Even though we are no longer their youth leaders, we still love them tremendously, think about them daily, and pray for them constantly.

two: We have been very blessed financially in the last couple of months so the fact that we may have to drop some money for Hunter to get his tire fixed (no thanks to a stick) this weekend, surprisingly, doesn't bring me any anxiety. Thank you Lord!

 three: We have been invited by some dear friends to witness the baptism of some youth kids this Sunday! Remember that youth retreat weekend we helped with? We're now getting the opportunity to watch as a couple of these kids publically declare their love for God. Hot dang!

four: I've been slow getting my other DIY project going but I have every intention to get'er done this weekend.

five: Hunting Saturday. That is all.


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Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Why I Brought Facebook Back Into My Life

Weird, I know, because I was (and still slightly am) so anti-facebook. I decided early last year to step away from facebook. I was so beyond sick and tired of the negativity of people, the way people would attack each other from behind the comfort of their computers, and just the overall obsession that had/has been created with facebook. For example, I heard many times from different people, "He/She deleted me off of facebook?! OMG!"
If you are or were this type of person and made these types of comments, don't go and get your panties in a wad just yet and start attacking me from behind the comfort of your computer. I was just as guilty as the next guy when it came to thinking, "What the heck?! Why did you delete me?!" Honestly, it's sad the way we have allowed our relationships to be determined by the simple click of a button.
**Yes, I know you can "hide" or "block" things. I would be blocking a lot of things in this case.
So you're probably assuming I've lost my ever-loving marbles at this point for even considering jumping back into facebook. Allow me to humor ya'll a bit...
It all started when I began having thoughts of forming a women's ministry. I'll have another post on this next week because it's entirely too much to talk about in this short paragraph. SO, I've been working on details and ideas for a women's ministry group and I realized that the easiest way for me to contact several women with this idea + setting up the details was probably going to be best done on a social media platform, such as facebook.
My instant thought was, "Nope. Not going back into that hell-hole again." I'm mature, I know (sarcasm for those who don't get it).
As I was contemplating on what to do, I was also talking to a friend of mine about meeting up for dinner one night. I passed my idea along to her because she is somebody whose opinion I value greatly simply because she has a heart for God. She immediately sent me an article she had read about women's ministry and encouraged me to use facebook. At first, I was hesitant. I bucked the idea and just kept saying, nope. Finally, she said something that really made me stop in my tracks and think. She said that I could use facebook as a platform for good. In fact, her exact words were,
"Remember... most things can be used for good!!"
Right you are my friend. Right you are. And honestly, this concept can be applied to anything.
So I have turned over a new leaf and I am using facebook as a positive platform for not only the Gospel, but just life in general. I want it to serve as a place of encouragement, accountability, and relational means to people. Yes, I have cleaned out my "friends" list a little bit because sometimes we don't need to see curse words constantly displayed across our own feeds. Ya'll are more than welcome to check out both the blog's facebook page and my personal page, and I'm also going to encourage ya'll to join me in this brigade for positive attitudes in the social media realm. I'm not talking just facebook; I'm talking all social medias.
I guess after all is said and done, never say never, and never underestimate the power of the Gospel.

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Monday, February 2, 2015

Oh so grateful for snakes...

So I'm back on Facebook and I'll explain more later in the week, so there's that. Some of ya'll may have seen my sweet little post about experiencing many firsts with my wonderful and darling husband. So when my darling husband asked me last week if I wanted to partake in the local Rattlesnake Roundup, my answer wasn't just a resounding no. But a hecckkk no. I think my actual response was, "Mmm that sounds like my hell."
I don't do snakes. Much like I don't do spiders. He reassured me that we wouldn't be handling the snakes; the wise and crazy fearless snake handlers would be touching them. Literally typing this just makes my skin crawl and my insides quake. Not only are these snakes, they're rattlesnakes. If you aren't familiar with these kinds of snakes, you live under a rock Google them. Lucky for us, rattlesnakes are all too common in this area.
So being the good wife, I agreed to go on one condition - I would not touch a snake.
Overall, it was a really neat event that I found quite interesting. No, the heavens didn't open up and the Holy Spirit didn't encourage me to become a snake handler because let's be honest, He knows I couldn't handle it. But, I did enjoy learning all about these creatures. I also thoroughly enjoyed stuffing my face with fair food, but don't judge me.

There was one point during the demonstration that the rattlesnake was just not having any of it. So he decided to jump off the table. I kid you not, my SIL and I booked it the heck out of there! It provided good entertainment for the folks around us ha!

Today (and honestly every day), I'm so grateful for the snake handlers that handle those little beasts. Without ya'll, my world would be a dark, slithery place. In fact, ya'll deserve medals and cookies.
Grateful Heart w/ Ember Grey

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