Friday, December 30, 2011
Faith Like a Child- where I share how going to a secular university affected my faith. I also share about my trip to Liberty University with my friend Candace.
What Michelle Duggar Taught Me- *Now with links to purchase the Duggar's books!
10 Little Envelopes that have Changed my Life- where I share simple steps to saving & spending that have changed my life. *Now with links to purchase Dave Ramsey's books!
Getting to Know Me-you can pretty much guess what this is about:)
My Exciting News-good news for my blog!
Our New Favorite Toys-the kids I nanny for and I love these toys from Alphabet Alley
If you are a blogger comment and share a link to your top blog of 2011-I want to read it!
Thursday, December 29, 2011
While that might not seem like a lot I have been obsessing over it. I'm so afraid of gaining more weight & being overweight again. But lately God has been showing me that I care way too much about that number on the scale. When weighing myself ruins the whole day for me-that's a problem. When I'm thinking more about what I weigh than I'm thinking about Jesus, prayer requests, my goals, hopes, dreams etc-that's a problem. So this year my New Year's "resolution" (although I don't really do those) is not to lose weight but to stop thinking and caring so much about my weight. Yes it's important to keep an eye on it and stay healthy but what I weigh is not the most important thing in my life (not even close!).
I'm starting to re-read my friend Candace & her co-author Darlene's book Reshaping It All: Motivation for Physical and Spiritual Fitness. I've shared before about this awesome book that shares a biblical perspective on health and fitness. It's a definitely a must read for anyone who has ever struggled with weight or anyone who cares about being healthy. So check it out & here's to a happy, healthy New Year for us all!
Tuesday, December 27, 2011
Click here to visit Ashley Pichea.
Monday, December 26, 2011
My birthday started out with lunch at Benihana with my mom and brother
Then we went bowling-I was terrible but it was fun!
My mom and brother were much better at it
There was a huge tree outside Benihana
View from the bottom
Church on Christmas morning!
Opening gifts! And look what I got!! My mom so generously got me an i-pad. One of the things that sets off my pain the most is sitting at the computer desk so being able to lay down & be on the computer is huge for me and I couldn't be more grateful!
Did all of you have a nice Christmas?
Friday, December 23, 2011
26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27 to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.”
29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.”
34 “How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?”
35 The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. 36 Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. 37 For no word from God will ever fail.”
38 “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.” Then the angel left her.Luke 2:1-17
1 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.
4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.
8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”
16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.
I pray you and your family have a wonderful Christmas!
Wednesday, December 21, 2011
My 1st Birthday
It's my 29th Birthday today!!!! It really is. I know many women who seem to always be turning 29 but for me this is my first 29th birthday:) I love my birthday, otherwise known as the National Stacy Holiday around here. I always take off work for my birthday and spend the whole day doing things I love-hanging out with family, eating my favorite foods, watching home movies, and playing games. My whole family gets into to it and and usually takes off part of their work day too. I shockingly found out this year that not everyone makes such a big deal out of their birthday. But they are just missing out! I figure God gives each of us our own special day so why not really celebrate it.
The other thing I love almost as much as my birthday is free stuff!! My mom and I are the queen of getting stuff for free and birthdays are the perfect time to get free items. So many restaurants and stores offer free items or coupons for birthdays. I was already signed up for so many but about 6 weeks ago I decided there must be more than what I had thought of so I googled "free birthday stuff" and found this site. You put in your state and a list of places that offer free birthday items pops up and you can sign up for each one! Birthday heaven!! So far I have had:
A free latte from Panera ($2.95)
A free latte from Starbucks ($3.75)
A free burger and 2 sides from Ruby Tuesday's ($9.99)
Free All you can eat stirfry & salad bar from Mongolian Bbq ($14.99)
Free peach cobbler w/ homemade whipped cream from City Bbq ($3.99)
Free dessert Pizookie from Bj's Restaurant & Bar
Free Pasta from Noodles & Company
Free Chocolate Cake from Boston Market
A $30 free gift certificate from Benihana (where I'm going today!)
A buy 1 get 1 free ice cream from Coldstone's
Buy 1 get 1 free Blizzard at Dairy Queen
And $5.00 off my meal at Jason's Deli
So in honor of my birthday I'm sharing the site with you. Enjoy!
And happy birthday to me!! :)
Monday, December 19, 2011
I am overwhelmed at Christmas. It happens every year even though I try to prevent it. It's not like I go crazy trying to buy a million presents, bake perfect cookies and go to every party in town. Honestly I just do those things in moderation. The problem is not what I do, it's just doing anything at all! Every year around late November my body starts to slow down, my pain & fatigue goes from about a 6 or 7 to an 8 or 9 and I get to the point where I have about 4 to 5 hours a day that I feel good enough to do anything but leave the couch. The problem is I have no choice but to give those "good" hours to work which leaves me with no physical or mental energy to do anything else. And then the festivities of Christmas hit and I just can't keep up with everything. It makes me sad because it's those Christmas memories that I want to spend my "good" hours enjoying but I can't.
Before this post sounds all gloom and doom I will say I am feeling every so slightly better the last 6 months since I've switched to a new medication. And I've found mild pain relief through chiropractor adjustments and taking water fitness classes. These very little things leave me hopeful that this winter won't be as bad as last winter. But I know I need to slow down majorly. And I know I can do it but it takes a leap of faith. The best news of all is that when I trust in Him I know He will never let me down.
Is anyone else feeling a little overwhelmed lately?
Sunday, December 18, 2011
This afternoon I had the chance to perform in Handel's Messiah with my mom. It was a great time. My sister was sweet enough to record some of our songs. Enjoy!
My favorite the Hallelujah Chorus
His Yoke is Easy & His Burthen is Light
Glory to God
For Unto Us
And He Shall Purify
Friday, December 16, 2011
I couldn't be more proud of her! I had the time to read her e-book and I am so impressed with the insights the Lord has given Rachel. This is a woman who has experienced pain-a broken marriage, the loss of her mother and the rare terminal illness of her daughter. It is in the place of deep hurt that the Lord has met Rachel and it is out of the comfort she has received from God that she shares with all of us. Christmas can be such a difficult time for so many people and I cannot encourage you enough to please buy Rachel's e-book. And it's only $2.99-you can't beat that!!
I had never really thought about the whole Santa issue before. I grew up believing in Santa until a few weeks before my 8th Christmas when I asked my mom if he was real and told her I knew she wouldn't lie to me. Well after saying that she had to tell me the truth! I cried at the revelation but like all kids thought nothing of it after a few tears. I didn't ever think that my parents lied to me and clearly it didn't impact my ability to later believe in God who is also unseen. But now hearing this child's comment as an adult it made me wonder if I had kids of my own if I would do the whole Santa thing.
I do believe it's such a beautiful, innocent, magical thing to imagine the north Pole with a toy shop full of elves, Mrs Claus baking cookies and Santa checking his list twice but at the same time Christmas is about Jesus and I don't want Santa stealing His thunder! Christmas is about the birth of our savior and making that day all about Santa just doesn't sit well with me at all.
So I'm curious if you have kids do you tell them about Santa? When you were a kid did your parents do the Santa thing? I would love to hear your thoughts!
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
We had a great morning but what started as an opportunity to bless others became a blessing to me. One of the ladies in my small group, my pastor's wife, came to talk to me before the activities started. My pastor's is seriously one of the sweetest people I've ever known and her words of encouragement were just what I needed that morning. She told me she knows I'm in so much pain and yet I keep going on as if I'm not. That might not seem like a lot to say but to me it was hugely encouraging. Everyone wants to be acknowledged. And it meant so much to me for someone to recognize how much it took for me to be there that morning.
It got me thinking how often do we miss opportunities to acknowledge others. To let them know that we see them and the struggles they are going through and to encourage them to persevere. Who do you know that needs encouragement today? Someone going through an illness or other challenging circumstance? Pick up the phone and give them a call today!
Maybe you are the one who needs the encouragement. Maybe you feel all but invisible to the outside world. There is Someone who see you, loves you and knows what you're going though and He has promised to never leave you or forsake you. Call Him today!
"[Hagar] gave this name to the LORD who spoke to her:
You are the God who sees me.
"Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." Romans 10:13
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Here is what she says on her blog about the award "The Liebster award ("Liebster" is the German word for friend or love) originated in Germany. The aim of the award is to bring attention to blogs with fewer than 200 to 300 followers."
To accept the award I am supposed to also honor 5 blogs (with less than 300 followers-I'm not sure what kind of followers they mean?) that I enjoy. So please check out these blogs and help them grow!
Striving to be Bold
Reaching His Kids
Here are the guidelines (I got from Macy Memoirs) for accepting the award:
- Show your thanks to the blogger who gave you the award by linking back to them.
- Reveal your top five picks and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.
- Post the award on your blog.
- Have fun and share the blessings!
- Save the Liebster image to your computer and upload it to your blog. ( I had no idea how to do this?)
What are your favorite blogs?
Monday, December 12, 2011
The Living Room Tree-so pretty!
My Christmas village set up in an antique Hosier Cabinet
The pump organ looks beautiful all decorated
Family room tree with all the ornaments we made as kids
We made him a bed out of leftover greenery because he loves it so much!
And Santa too!
One of my fave decorations-General Jack Frost-he dances and sings Christmas songs!
Dining Room Table
I was born 4 days before Christmas & came home from the hospital on Christmas Day in this stocking
A nativity tapestry I got in China a few years ago
The real meaning of Christmas!
Merry Christmas to you and your family!
Want to see other Christmas decorations? Check out the link up at The Tuckers Take Tennessee.com
Thursday, December 8, 2011
What would your life be like? Would you still be joyful? Would you be able to work? What if you still had to work even if you really couldn't? How would your relationships be different? Would you be able to go to church and Bible study every week? Would you be able to handle basic tasks like cleaning, laundry and grocery shopping? Would you be able to think about anything else but the relentless pain?
That is how I and millions of people with chronic conditions feel. Everyday is a struggle. Every small, daily task is a struggle. And if we sometimes seem a little grumpy it's because we feel terrible. And if we sometimes seem a bit too obsessed with our condition it's because it's hard to ignore something that never leaves you alone.
Sometimes when I daydream I imagine what it would be like to feel normal. To wake up in the morning in no pain. To be able to work full time and not worry about how I will support myself. To think about things other than how bad I feel all the time. Maybe someday on this Earth I will know a day like that but if I don't I know there will be a day when I will and until then I choose to trust Him.
How do you explain your chronic condition to others?
Tuesday, December 6, 2011
Make a list and check it twice- Write out a list of everyone you want to get gifts for-be very selective to only include family and close friends. Next to each person's name write how much you have budgeted to spend on that person.
Limit number of gifts-Remember you don't have to go all out just because it's Christmas. Jesus (our Savior who we are celebrating!) only got 3 gifts on His birthday so your kids really don't need 20 gifts on Christmas.
For extended family why not do a gift exchange where everyone draws a name? That way you are only having to buy for 1 person instead of many.
In my family my siblings and I have decided to not exchange gifts at all. That might sound like no fun but we are all saving money and I don't need a gift from them to know they love me.
Get creative with your gifts- For your kids try a gift certificate in place of some toys. For example "This certificate entitles you to go on a ice cream date with mommy or a bike ride to the park with daddy".
For teachers, neighbors and service providers-bake your favorite Christmas cookies and give those in place of gifts.
For friends-choose to have a girls night out to a restaurant or even better a potluck at someone's house instead of exchanging gifts.
Save throughout the year and if you don't have cash don't buy it- At the beginning of the year I write out a list of all gifts I will need to buy for the year (Bdays, Mothers Day, Easter, extra money for occassional wedding/baby showers, Christmas etc). I assign a budget for each gift, add up those numbers and divide by 12 to determine how much I need to save per month. At the beginning of each month I take out that amount of money (in my case $25/mth) and save it in an envelope. Whenever I need to buy gifts throughout the year I only pay for them out of that envelope.
Remember Christmas is only about 1 gift-The gift of our Savior!
Luke 2: 8-11 "And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord."
Use this season to give the gift of your time-time with the people you love and time to those in need. Purpose not to get caught up in all the commercialism and choose instead to have yourself a Merry Debt Free Christmas now:)
What are your tips for a debt free Christmas?
Monday, December 5, 2011
Kidzola was started 3 years ago by two moms as an online children's marketplace where you can buy and sell everything from children's clothes and books to toys and handmade accessories. The best part is it's completely free to list an item and you only pay a small commission when the items sells. They also allow you to set up your own online store and web page completely for free. If you are a mom looking for a way to make some extra money or just looking for really great children's items at an affordable price-then Kidzola is perfect for you.
Ok I realize this post sounds like one giant commercial but it's just because I'm excited about it. I know that many of you are moms trying to raise your children and save money at the same time and this is a great site that helps you do that.
I am so excited about the Kidzola website that I also decided to take advantage of a neat opportunity they offer for bloggers. I signed up for free to be a Kidzola affiliate! So I would love it if you would click on my ad to the right or the links in this post if you decide to visit Kidzola. To my fellow bloggers definitely check out the affiliate program.
Happy Shopping friends!
*Disclaimer-I did not receive compensation in exchange for this review. I am however a Kidzola affiliate and if people click on my ad or links in this post and then buy/sell on Kidzola I will receive compensation from Kidzola.
Friday, December 2, 2011
When I saw the topic was "tired" on the Five Minute Friday at GypsyMama.com, I knew I had to particpate. I have been exhausted all week. I haven't slept through the night since last Sunday. I've had fibromyalgia, a chronic nerve pain condition, since childhood and along with the pain comes insomnia and intense fatigue. And it's a different kind of tired than just missing a night of sleep here or there. Its the kind of tired that settles into your bones where you are so exhausted it just hurts. But at least it's the weekend and I'm ready for hopefully a few nights of good rest.
This verse is on my mind: "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest" Matthew 11:28
Ok wow 5 minutes goes really fast! Hope you all have a restful weekend:)