Sunday, March 31, 2013

jack johnson says it best...

do you remember when we first met
i sure do
it was sometime in early September.
you were lazy about it
you made wait around
i was so crazy about you, i didn't mind...

...i was crazy about you then 
and now the craziest thing of all, 
[almost] ten years have gone by
and you're still mine,
we're locked in time, 
let's rewind...

...well, all these times they come and go
and alone don't seem so long
[almost] ten years have gone by
we can't rewind
we're locked in time
and you're still mine

do you remember?

these were the lyrics that rang through the kitchen this morning
as i cooked up some pancakes and Daniel fed the girlies
the song always sends me down memory lane
we too, met in september (of 2003 - man, i felt old even typing that!)
then i made him wait, and wait...and wait some more
until nine years ago, today
when we went out for our first date

it was my first time at the olive garden
and we've gone every march 31st since 
(except for our 2nd anniversary - but that's another story for another day!)
this year, we decided to swap out our our usual dinner for a lunch date instead
since we're having a big dinner tonight to celebrate Easter 
which is something much bigger and better to celebrate

today we celebrate our Lord Jesus dying on the cross
to pay the debt we've incurred by our sin
then rising from death three days later
having conquered sin and death
and now, because of this, we have access to salvation and redemption
and eternal life in heaven with Him
and a transformed life for the time that we're on earth
not because of anything that we have done
but because of His grace and what He has done on our behalf
guys, this is a big deal!
there is no other way to salvation, but through Him
and we are so very grateful for His transforming work on the cross and in our lives
and the hope that it has given us

thank you, thank you, thank you Jesus!

Happy Easter, everybody!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

The Adams Family // Langley Family Portrait Photographer

this past Sunday afternoon, 
i got to meet up with the sweetest couple and their baby boy for a family photo shoot
we'd been planning the shoot for quite some time now, 
hoping for a sunny day (check!)
and a nice location (check!  ...thanks for the awesome suggestion, guys!)
we spent the afternoon laughing, chatting and comparing notes on our babies
as we got to know each other a bit more
there was dancing and guitar playing and everything in between
i couldn't be happier with the turnout
but i mean, look at them - how could you go wrong with such a good-lookin' family? 

Monday, March 25, 2013

renewed: new week, new day, new mercies

happy monday, everybody! 

we're kicking off the week with a glorious day over here
the sun is shining and there's not a cloud in sight,
which is always lightens up the mood
(no pun intended...well, maybe just a teensy one - can't help myself sometimes)!

the girls and i had a great morning:
they ate and played nice
i ate and spent some time in the Word
the fact that all these things happened before 11am is nothing short of miraculous

i've really been challenged lately to renew my mind 
not just daily, but throughout the day
to really savor scripture in my heart and head as i go about my day
so it was definitely a treat to actually get some reading done in the morning as we begin a new day

i'm not getting to do that as often as i'd like
between the chaos that is life with my girlies
and my way too easily distracted personality
(which, i am working on!)

i was feeling pretty discouraged about the whole situation a couple of weeks ago
as we sat in church, listening to a sermon
about finding our joy and satisfaction first and foremost in the Lord,
and how we need to read and study and know scripture regularly
in order to live this way

then our pastor talked about how being Word saturated is both a delight and a discipline
and it was like a light bulb lit up in my head:
i won't always wake up eager to crack open my Bible - that's where the discipline part kicks in
but that discipline leads to delight as I grow in relationship with the Lord

anyway, all that to say:
i am excited and encouraged to have gotten to spend some time in the Word this morning; 
i hope this little spiel of mine has encouraged you to do the same!
an excerpt from my reading this morning

Thursday, March 21, 2013

grandma's in town!

the girlies are in seventh heaven right now
and who wouldn't be?
grandma's in town, which means:
extra cuddles
special treats
 being allowed to dig through purses
a new {super cute} bathing suit delivery (thanks, auntie!)
one more set of hands willing to walk them around
(while wearing toques and winter coats inside, naturally!)

Monday, March 18, 2013

on growth, motherhood and grace

dear baby girls, 

it feels like it's been a while since i last wrote you a letter.  life has been busy and you continue to grow and change so much as the days go by.  last week, you turned 14 months old - it feels like only yesterday when you were 14 days old and i sat here, writing you a letter, dreaming about the future... 

lately, i've had a lot of moments where all of a sudden it hits me that i don't have babies anymore - i've watched you taking first steps, eating meals all by yourselves, having your own conversations in the back of the van, playing together instead of just beside each other, giggling back and forth, playing dress-up, getting a bazillion teeth (well, maybe not a bazillion - but we're up to 12 each now, including some molars!) - I am amazed every day at how intricately the Lord created you and how you continue to grow and learn and change.  
you're learning so much as you get older - i love how daring you are when you explore new things.  you're super curious (sometimes a little too curious for my liking, but still...) and you don't think twice about what might happen as a result of your wanting to discover more about the world around you - let me tell you, as your mother, it is scary to watch you jump and not worry (or even think) about falling, but it's also inspiring to see you chase adventure without letting fear hold you back.  i know it has more to do with the fact that you don't yet understand the danger around you, but it certainly challenges me to evaluate the fears that i have allowed to keep me from moving forward in life and the areas that i need to trust in the Lord's hands.  

that's the crazy thing about motherhood - i went into it expecting to spend lots of time teaching and taking care of you, not realizing that all the while you would teach me about myself, my faith, my relationships - everything, really.  all of a sudden, i'm paying attention to what kind of example i'm setting and realizing how my life experience has shaped me:  what is good and worth passing on as well as what needs to change before my little sponges observe and emulate my behavior.  

it's not always easy, but i know it's for our good.  i love you girls so much and am looking forward to whatever the Lord has in store for our family as we continue to grow and change together.  in the meantime, i'm going to enjoy being silly with you, singing and dancing to your favorite worship music as part of our morning routine, watching your eyes light up with wonder and delight as you experience new things every day and slipping into your room at night long after you've dozed off just to get one more glance at my beautiful babies all curled up.  you are a blessing from above, girlies - and i pray that the Lord would grant us grace and wisdom to raise you in a way that honors Him.

love you to the moon and back, girly-qs!

your mom

Thursday, March 14, 2013

they're here, they're here!!!

last week, i sent some test prints off 
to get a feel for the printer i want to use for client prints and canvases
i definitely got that kid on Christmas morning feeling when the package arrived
and it got even better once i opened it up
i've never actually printed my work, so it was pretty exciting to see and feel tangible, real product
and i've gotta say, the color quality is impressive - this girl's sold!
can't wait to give others the same feeling as they open up prints from their photo sessions with me!  :)

Monday, March 11, 2013

last week in review: reflections and resolutions

i knew going into last week that it was going to be a busy one
i had something major on the calendar for every day 
which may not seem like much, 
but jumping from our norm of one, maybe two busy days a week
(outside of the day-to-day, that is) 
to seven days full of appointments, classes, business meetings etc.
was exhausting
...add in the surprise element of the kiddos and me getting sick,
plus one of them being seriously sad over what we think were teething pain,
and we were set for one crazy week!

and that's exactly what it was: crazy
the jam-packed schedule, the needy kids, the late nights, the annoying cold....
let's just say there were some high highs and some low lows

and to be honest,
on the one hand, i did enjoy the business
and the extra cuddles we needed to squeeze in
but on the other, i was pretty stressed out and more drained than i've been in a long time

and in that not-so-wonderful place
i was reminded just how important it is to lean on the Lord.
i'm not perfect, guys (anyone surprised?  hah.)
there are times when i'm totally on track and in the Word
and other times....not so much

but if i've learned anything in the past year
it's the importance of renewing my mind and seeking truth
especially when the going gets tough.
but those are the times i just want to give in instead
and pout, or pick a fight, or be impatient
or whatever

thankfully, i'm in good company,
even Paul felt that way sometimes:
so, i've decided to do something for myself
that i've often done for others going through a hard time
in order to tangibly "renew my mind"
and stay on track when i just wanna give in

i'm going to write out some verses
and tuck them away here and there
in order to help me focus on truth through my day
and better lean on Him to carry me through when I just don't have the strength
i am so encouraged by that verse

i know our battle is not against flesh and blood
and i know that none of us can do it on our own
but i also know that He will never leave us or forsake us
and i am so thankful that we can look to Jesus, our perfect example and helper

and that's the truth,
the gospel (literally, the good news)
that we should preach to ourselves when things get tough

can i get an amen?

Friday, March 1, 2013

happy friday!

these past few weeks have felt pretty looooooooooong
mondays feel like wednesdays, wednesdays feel like fridays, etc

but today really is friday and that's pretty exciting

you know what else is exciting about today?
getting a chance to bake some of my favorite cookies for a dear friend
i used heidi's recipe, which is a bit of an oldie but a goodie
i still remember making this back in our first [dishwasher-less, laundry-less, itty bitty] place as a married couple!
it's that easy, guys
you should definitely hop on over to her blog and get the recipe
then whip up a batch of your own!

they're pretty healthy as far as cookies go, 
but actually taste great

(i'll warn you though - daniel calls them "circle shaped granola bars" 
so if you've got a hankering for something along the lines of a fudgy-quadruple-chocolate-instant-heart-attack-cookies,
this one isn't for you!)
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