Sunday, January 29, 2017

I Will Trust//Blog Break

"I tried to win this war
I confess, my hands are weary, I need your rest
Mighty warrior, king of the fight
No matter what I face you're by my side."
Hello to all! I was just realizing that it's been two months since my last post, and I just wanted to assure you that I was not, in fact, crushed by a box during the moving process..:) The moving adventure went through with no more than the usual trouble, and we managed to get mostly unpacked and our Christmas decorations up in less than a week, thanks to my parents who are basically superheroes of the world of neatness.

My sister, Natalie, and me: our last picture together in front of this view.
Photo credits to our friend Hannah

How it came to be two months since my last post, I couldn't tell you. I guess I was busy and didn't have anything I wanted to say and, of course, end of semester and science fair pushed all other projects to the wayside.  However, I've been missing my little blog lately, and was longing to write something again. But thinking on what I might say brought me to realize there's not anything I'm ready to share with you all yet; inwardly, I'm confused with no thoughts untangled enough to write, and I don't desire to post anything surface level. So, all that being said, I am extending my absence from the blogging world.
I am thinking that I probably might not be back till summer break, or at least spring break, but who knows for sure. A post from me might just show up in your feed in a week. :)
I hope you are all having a good start to your 2017, and I wish you the best of luck in all your endeavors.
"Truth is you know what tomorrow brings
There's not a day ahead you have not seen
So let all things be my life and breath
I want what you want Lord and nothing less"
-Trust in You by Lauren Daigle


With love,
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Sunday, November 20, 2016

Moving On (11/20/2016)

So tomorrow we begin to move out of my home of eight and a half years. It's very strange, and I'm not sure how I feel about it, so I'm not going to go into that now, but I thought it would be fun to post some of the pictures from all the years we've lived in our little country home.
Winter 2008. WE GOT SNOW!!!!!!! You guys probably don't realize what a big deal that is here, and we got a few feet!
We went on a little walk. You can't tell from this picture, but most of the time Levi could hardly walk because the snow was deep on him.
Our little house in  the snowy "wilderness".

This was on my 8th birthday. :)
My first time cooking a big dinner; I made chicken pot pie! It took forever, it seemed, though. :)
 Bonfire party, Spring 2009. We had a guys vs. girls contest to see who could get their fire going first, and the girls won!
2008 (9?) Hanging out by the fire. :)
2009. The homeschool co-op meets at the Taft's house!
Natalie's birthday, May 4, 2010. Hanging out with the nieces and nephews in the tent we made.
Our puppy, Dallas, and me. December 2010
 We had a mini photo-shoot. December 2011

 My mom, sisters, and me. November (?) 2012
 Brandi, Natalie, and me. Christmas Eve, 2012.
 After school walk. 2012, or 2013.
My 13th birthday. Natalie made my cake!
Playing in the woods! Fall 2013
Christmas Eve 2013, with (some of) the nieces and nephews.
Thanksgiving 2015.
Our living room on Christmas morning 2015.

 Our New Years party! January 1, 2016.

An extra choir practice at our house. Working on Chim Cheree! March 2016.

 My 16th birthday party. We contra danced in the backyard. :)
My best friend visited from out of state. We did a little photo shoot in the yard. July 2016
Party in the kitchen! September 2016.

Tea party with two of my nieces on their last visit here. November 18, 2016
Ok, so that was more pictures than I planned on....but I guess that happens when you live in a place for a long time.
Thanks for bearing with me....and if you didn't, well, thanks for trying. XD
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Sunday, November 6, 2016

Octember (11/6/2016)

So, once again, it's been a month since I've posted, and I feel the urge to write. However, I'm starting this post with no clear intentions; bits of simple day-to-day life mixed with deeper reflections are floating around inside my head, and my sleep deprived brain is unable to differentiate clearly between them. Don't you just love it when you can't sleep on the night you're supposed to get an extra hour of it?
So....I suppose I'll start with simpler side of things, and catch up a bit on what life has been like, and then see if I can get some of those other thoughts out of my head and onto paper...well, onto blog anyway. ;)
October was the month of visits with new and old friends, enjoying the brightly colored leaves, sleep overs with friends, choir, babysitting, a fantabulous day at the YWAM conference, masquerade at youth group, and the usual school. It also involved the stress of trying to move. Our family has found about three houses we liked, but each time the door was shut to completing the process. One day, about two weeks ago, as my mom was dropping me off at my second destination of the day, she mentioned that we were going to have to leave the choir practice later on that evening a little early to pursue house hunting. Honestly, I was a little grumpy at the idea; Tuesdays were stressful enough what with classes, work, piano lessons, and choir, and I did not relish the idea of staying in town even later to walk through empty houses we probably wouldn't be purchasing anyway. I tried not say anything, though, and off we went after the activities of the day were through to look at a new house. Long story short, this house is going to be our home, in around two and a half weeks, or possibly less. So here we are, going in to the moving process, while simultaneously balancing holidays, choir performances, assignments, and all the other details of normal life. It's going to be interesting! I'm rather looking forward to it though; having friends join us in the work of the actual moving will make it fun. :)
“It was November--the month of crimson sunsets, parting birds, deep, sad hymns of the sea, passionate wind-songs in the pines. Anne roamed through the pineland alleys in the park and, as she said, let that great sweeping wind blow the fogs out of her soul.” -L.M. Montgomery
So, we are one week into November, and I feel like I could already write a novel about this month. So far, in addition to the usual weekly activities, I have gotten together with friends to work on a class project (and FINALLY completed said project), celebrated my youngest brother's tenth birthday, spent a day with my second family, visited a craft show with my lovely sister and friend and then went to see Doctor Strange with them, and then tumbled into bed so I would be ready to attend the Friday School in our area as a guest in the morning, thanks to my sweet friend Abi. I'm planning to join come February. :) Afterwards, I enjoyed the company of my older sister and her six littles, and on the following day dropped by the new house again, and spent an evening babysitting. Let me just say, the babysitting was an adventure, starting with the addition of two extra kids at the last minute,  coupled with two girls who don't always get along, three wild boys, and a sick child. As always, I survived, and had fun.
To shake things up a bit, I'm now going to randomly throw in a recently read; We Died Before We Came Here. I bought this book at the YWAM conference after hearing its author speak, and had no regrets. It was an amazing read, though admittedly a tear jerker. I included the link; go check it out!
So now I've finished up life update. I think I'm going to give up on apologizing for the length every time I post. I think it's time that I accept it's just going to be that way. :) 
So, I've decided that I will post the verses and quotes that have been my favorites this month, and let you determine where my mind has been in recent times. :)
"But now thus says the LORD, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: 'Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.'"-Isaiah 43:1
 "...and at last with a whirring of wings it was right overhead and was an albatross. It circled three times round the mast and then perched for an instant on the crest of the gilded dragon at the prow. It called out in a strong sweet voice what seemed to be words though no one understood them. After that it spread its wings, rose, and began to fly slowly ahead, bearing a little to starboard. Drinian steered after it not doubting that it offered good guidance. But no one except Lucy knew that as it circled the mast it had whispered to her, “Courage, dear heart,” and the voice, she felt sure, was Aslan’s, and with the voice a delicious smell breathed in her face." -C.S. Lewis, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
"The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold." -Psalm 18:2
"It is well with my soul."  -Horatio Spafford
 And on that note, I shall sign off. Wishing you all a very blessed Sunday afternoon,
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Sunday, October 2, 2016

Catching Up

Greetings to all  my kindred spirits! (Those who are of the race that knows Joseph, if you prefer).
I was looking back, and I noticed that my last post was on September 6th, and I decided it's time to update this thing. :)
My life tends to go in "clumps"; a month or two that have a similar feel to them, and then the next month goes into a new set. My memories are sort of grouped into these sets; for example, last December and January are a clump, and February and March are a clump. All that to say, since my last post, I left my previous season and moved into a new one.

On September 7, we had assembly day to start the new school year, followed by youth group starting up again that evening. The following Friday (September 9) we had a lakeside party to kick of the start of choir practices.
  I kind of had mixed feelings about going back to everything--hope that it would be a better year, fear that it wouldn't.
So far, all I can say is that it's been different.
Different as far as who I end up hanging out with the most.
Different as far as how my classes are going.
Different schedules--needing to be out the door by 7:15 in the morning. That's a killer for me!
Different house. We have our house on the market and are hoping to move into town by Christmas.
I'm on chapel team at school this year.
New faces at school and in choir.
New job.
New book; I read the Iliad for one of my classes
Facing the fact that someday I have to die.
Dealing with the messed up world in which I live.
Seeing my "unbiological" family four days out of the week, and spending the night with them to help get ready for a birthday party.
Having friends over night, binge watching Narnia, and staying up till four in the morning.
Wearing our bathrobes to choir along with some of the other girls
I have different classes, but I still have the same teacher
I am doing Great Books again, but this year we are focusing on ancient literature
Honestly, I'm just not sure what to think yet. All I know is that it's different than last year, emotionally and in every other way.
Forgive my rambling please; I'm afraid my thoughts have been sort of a jumbled mess lately, too hard for even me to weed through properly. But writing them out does help. :)
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Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Summer Trips--Spokane and Silver Lake

Hey, Guys! I just realized that with school starting this week, I'm running out of time to record our summer trips on this blog, so I'm writing about two on this post; our trip to Spokane for our family reunion, and our camping trip at Silver Lake.
Since we arrived at my uncle and aunt's house on Wednesday, and the reunion was not till Saturday, we had a couple of days to fill in. :)
On Thursday, we all headed out to the water park. Since my cousin and her husband and baby were going, as well as my older sister and her family, we decided to go the water park that was more kid friendly. We were told that it would also include a section that would appeal more to the rest of us, but when we got there we discovered it was completely a kid's water park. However, my nieces Alahna, and Hailee, were not going to allow me to just sit still and not partake in the water fun. The pulled me right in, and I found I had lots of fun hanging out with them. Just goes to show that if you look for the enjoyment in a disappointing situation, you can often find it. :)
This is me and my youngest nephew, Tucker, at the water park. :)
I hadn't actually read The Giver yet, so when my aunt found I needed reading material, she handed it to me to read. I enjoyed curling it up and reading it after we got back before Brandi and family and my cousin and family came for dinner. :)
Dinner time! I have a crazy family. ;)
 Tucker and me, again. Look at those eyes!!!!

 Playing with my three year old nephew, Cooper.
On Friday, we baked, made multiple trips to the park, and got to see Papa and Grandma (Mom's parents) for the first time since 2011. It was so wonderful to get to spend time with them again! Natalie, Tim, and I enjoyed hanging out in the kitchen while Papa made us laugh, like usual, and I  got to spend good time chatting with Grandma.
In the evening, a few more people arrived, and we enjoyed dinner together. However....
It was on Saturday, that the droves of people descended up on us....
We spent the day in playing games, making trips to the park, talking, eating, and of course, I sneaked away a couple of times in search of a few minutes of introvert time. ;)
 All of the cousins who could make it, my siblings, and my Papa and Grandma. :)
This is me with my cousin, Abby. :)
Of course, we had to get our pictures taken with Papa and Grandma before we left on Sunday. :)
On the way home; we thought it was funny how before the pass, it was all sunny and bright out. As soon as we crossed it to "our side", it was cloudy and wet out. "We're home" we joked. :)
I applogize for how lengthy this post already is; I'll keep the next trip section to a minimum.
My good friend, Elizabeth, already wrote an amazing post on the trip. I suggest you read her post for more details, and I'll just throw in a few pictures of my own.
 We went camping with Elizabeth and her family a few weeks ago; our campsite was by Silver Lake, and we also drove up to Artist Point. It was gorgeous! I had so much fun, even on the cold day, because we got to go in Elizabeth's trailer, play card games, eat chocolate, and watch Sense and Sensibility. It was really fun! :)
 Breathtaking Artist Point......
I believe Natalie took this picture.

Elizabeth and me on the dock at Silver Lake. :)

Natalie, Elizabeth, and me at Artist Point.
Dad kayaking at Silver Lake

Natalie and me at our campsite.
 Well, now I've blogged our two trips! I apologize once again for the length of this post, and the picture overload. :)
 Where did you go this summer?
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Monday, August 29, 2016

Study Traditions

Hey, all! With school starting up again, thoughts on studying, organization, and efficiency are of course on the forefront of my mind. As I was thinking through ways to improve my studying, I thought it would be fun to post some of the ways I've tried that help make my studying a bit less painful.
This is not really a post full of tips on ways to help you study, but simply a post describing the funny little study quirks I have.
#1--Hot Drinks
Personally, I hate sitting still and studying for any long length of time without something to sip or nibble on. Generally, I go for hot drinks, because I love the comforting feel of wrapping my hands around them. In the mornings, I usually drink coffee; in the afternoons and evenings it's often tea. Once in a while, I'll indulge myself and buy a box of hot chocolate, and then carefully ration out the packets. One of my favorite uses for hot chocolate is when I come home from youth group and still have homework to complete; it's comforting for me to have it when I must work, but really want to sleep. Apple cider is great, too, but I'm rarely able to obtain it. :(
#2--No late nights
Unfortunately, I am not one of those people who can stay up late to complete a homework assignment, which means I can't procrastinate and must get it done ahead of time. If I try to work past ten thirty --eleven on a good night-- I kind of become a mess, and don't get anything done anyway. So I almost always work no later than nine thirty, and save the rest of the evening for relaxation.
I love music. And I'm one of those lucky people who is able to simultaneously listen to it and study. Sometimes I choose classical music, but I also pick music that I can sing along to and tap my feet with. Thankfully, I am not like my dad in this way; he, on the other hand, can't even stand the ticking of the clock when he is trying to get something done. For me, music can take the edge off the pain. Usually, I can listen to music unless I'm reading. This year, I'm also planning on listening to some of the songs from the Harry Potter soundtrack, so I can feel like I'm at Hogwarts. ;)
(Sorry I couldn't find a better picture!)
Now, don't laugh at me when you get to this one, but when I'm completing math problems, or answering my science review questions, I love to watch a little TV. Although, it is always something I've seen before, so that I'm not also trying to keep up with the plot of the show. My "homework shows" are usually Road to Avonlea, BBC Merlin, Full House, and I love Lucy. Occasionally, I might watch Doctor Who or Once Upon a Time, as well. It is a nice noise in the background, and something I enjoy looking up at every now and then after finishing an answer.
#5--Study Groups
It is very helpful for me to occasionally get a group of friends together on Saturdays to go over the homework assignments and help each other out; especially in science! We work together for a couple hours, and then make time for a bit of fun. It's a win-win. :)
There, in summary, are my study traditions.
What are some of yours?
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