Tuesday, June 28, 2011

All Flesh is as Grass

Have you heard of Photo Story? It's a really cool program you can download for free to create your own videos with pictures, narration, and/or music! The program is very user-friendly, and the possibilities for Photo Stories are endless! I recently learned about the program in one of my graduate classes. After completing the assignment for my course, I wanted to make another Photo Story, just for fun, featuring a number of my favorite nature pictures. 

The more I observe God's creation around me, the more awed I am by its beauty and brevity. "All flesh is as grass . . . but the word of the Lord endures forever" declares 1 Peter 1:24-25. If God designed the flowers to be so lovely, which last only a few days, how much more precious is His word, which endures forever.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Style Secret: XS or XL?

XS or XL?--It's one of my favorite style secrets. After a friend pointed out to me how similar a Girls’ XL T-shirt is in size to a Misses XS, I started shopping for tops in the Girls’ department. For those of us women who wear Misses XS, S, or Petite S sizes, there are some great advantages for looking in the Girls’ department for shirts: Girls’ T’s tend to have higher necklines, tend to be designed to be less form-fitting, and tend to have a lower price than an equivalent style from the Misses or Juniors departments. Paired with grown-up accessories, a Girls’ shirt can be just as fashionable but more modest and more economical. Cheers!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

First Roses of Summer

Since I've been in Virginia attending one of my graduate courses on campus at Liberty University and visiting friends the past two weeks, the roses here in Midland have started blooming. Here's one of the first roses of the season. We're in for a beautiful summer!

Monday, June 6, 2011


The peonies in our backyard burst open this afternoon! For days I’ve been watching them sprout, hoping that they would blossom before I leave for Virginia on Wednesday. Peonies are some of my favorite flowers, and I was hoping I wouldn’t have to miss them this season. I'm reminded that “He makes everything beautiful in its time” (Ecclesiastes 3:11).  


Sunday, June 5, 2011

Fletcher Garden

My aunt and uncle invited us over this evening for a bonfire in their backyard. Ahh, what a delightful way to spend an early-summer evening! We arrived shortly before sunset--just in time for me to take a few pictures of the lovely flowers around their property...

Saturday, June 4, 2011


Irises make me happy. Maybe because they're some of the first flowers I recall from my childhood. Wherever my family has lived, we have grown purple irises. We had a bunch of lavender irises growing along the backyard fence of our townhouse in Rockville, Maryland. I remember having to gently push aside the laden blossoms in order to open the gate on my way to the playground behind our house. Later, when my family moved to Toledo, Ohio, we planted purple irises in our new backyard. Here in Midland, Michigan, too, we have irises growing in our backyard. It's fun to see irises blooming this week around the neighborhood.

I also noticed a bunch of these pink flowers in a neighbor's front yard. I'm not sure what they're called; I keep telling myself I need to buy a field guide and start learning more about local plant life. In the meantime, though, I enjoy just admiring them....

Friday, June 3, 2011

My Cup Overflows

“My cup overflows,” declares the Psalmist, testifying of the abundance of God’s goodness, provision, and love even in the midst of adverse times (see Psalm 23:5). These days my cup is overflowing too. In my case, however, my “cup” is actually my wallet....

“How was your wallet shopping?” My friend Cara greeted me as we met in the Starbucks parking lot yesterday evening.

“Haha, you should see,” I replied. “I bought a new wallet—one of those chic, clutch styles to replace my beloved, old, bulging tri-fold one that’s been literally holding together by a thread. I was just transferring everything into it, but I have so many dollar bills and coins and gift cards that I can’t even clasp it closed! By the way, I found two Starbucks gift cards, so the frapps are my treat today!”

Stepping up to the barista to place our order, we both laughed as I pulled my over-stuffed, wide-open, new wallet out of my purse. “So much for being sleek!”

When I look at my over-filled wallet, I marvel at this tangible evidence of God’s goodness, provision and love for me in this season of my life. At the beginning of the semester I quit my job and moved home, under doctor’s orders, to recover from burnout. With graduate tuition expenses and without steady income this entire semester, I think it’s pretty amazing that these days not only am I carrying a wallet that’s bulging with cash and gift cards, but there is also more money in my checkbook now at the end of May, at the end of the semester, than there was back in January, at the beginning of the semester. Wow.

Indeed, my cup is overflowing—or should I say, my wallet seams are bursting? So, I want to know, how has God recently been causing your cup to overflow?

Thursday, June 2, 2011


I consider myself much more of an artist than a scholar. Facing multiple research projects and yet another set-back in my studies this week, I’m really needing my creative outlets. Among my favorites is going to the Dow Gardens on a photo shoot. One of the things I love about visiting a garden is that there is always something beautiful to be discovered and enjoyed. This week the rhododendron are in full bloom; as are the poppies, Japanese primroses, and dozens of other kinds of flowers. 

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Style Secret: Swimsuit Season

Whenever swimsuit season rolls around, what woman doesn’t relate to Cathy?!! Especially for those of us who want to be modest yet not fuddy-duddy at the pool or beach, it’s all the more challenging to find the perfect swimwear. Last year I read this idea in one of Leslie Ludy’s books. She suggests going for a sporty look by wearing a fitness top and skirt/shorts, rather than a tankini. As she points out, a lot of fitness wear and swimwear are made of the same fabric, but the fitness tops tend to have higher necklines as well as better midriff coverage. Last summer I bought a Fila tank with a dark navy print, to coordinate with the dark navy swim skirt and swim shorts that I already had. I’m really happy with it. =)