Saturday, April 14, 2018

I Got Tagged Again!

The Tag:

I was tagged for the Liebster Award Tag by... Bethani from Gratefully His!

*stares Bethi down* You did this just so I would have to fill out the facts section again. I know you did. Just kidding, thanks Bethi ;)! 


 The Rules:

-Acknowledge the blog that gave it to you and display the award. Check.
-Answer the 11 questions that the blogger gives you. Will do.
-Give 11 random facts about yourself. I'm running out of facts, y'all. 
-Nominate 11 blogs. And blogs. I had a few I wanted to tag last time that went over the 11 limit, but not *11* more!
-Notify those blogs of their nomination. I can do that...
-Give them 11 questions to answer. *Thumbs up*

The Questions:


1: What is your favorite book?
No, no, no, no. You didn't. Not again!!! NOT THE FAVORITE QUESTIONS. 
Ughhhhh. How about a few?
The bible is the one book that I would never want to give up, and I especially love the books of Ruth, Psalms, John, Romans, and Hebrews.
Other than that... I am going to go with "The Valley of Vision", "Choosing Gratitude", and "An Old-Fashioned Girl". The one I have loved reading best so far this year was "Kingdom's Quest". It's this allegorical story inspired by the life of Paul, and honestly it's geared for younger ages, but for some reason this one just really touched me. I think it was raw and hopeful, all at the same time. It's not something I expected after the first few books, which were interesting but not terribly compelling, haha. 

2: What is your least favorite book?
This one is easier. It's a toss up between "Rose in Bloom" (I looked for that book for five years and HATED it when I found it, it was the worst disappointment) and "The House of 30 Cats" (you have a trouble-making cat? Let the cat die, then everything is alright! *screams* It was the worst).
3: What is your Favorite movie?
Nope, not even trying. Let's pretend this question doesn't even exist, 'kay? Although if you want to tell me YOUR favorite movie, I can tell you what I think of it. Ha. 

4: What is the scariest movie that you have watched?
Hands down, "Return to the Hiding Place". I'm not sure why it was so terrifying... maybe because in the back of your mind was the fact that it was a real story and this "was" really happening... maybe because as a real story, you knew people weren't safe just to help the story along... I don't know. But Mama and I went to bed with pounding hearts and jumping at little noises (Not kidding, Mama literally checked her blood pressure it was so bad, haha...).

5: What is your favorite month?
I am NOT copying Bethi here. October was my favorite month before it was hers ;)... It's fall, even here in SC. Coffee, gingersnaps, sweaters, cool(er) days, extra reading, the colors. Everything is beautiful from early October to mid November!

6: What does your dream house look like?
*Laughs because I literally answered this the other day* Then realizes... I told you my dream starter home. The home I dream about that is too small for raising a dozen children efficiently. Sooooo, I guess I could tell you about my dream long-term home, right? 
When I see that home, there are a few things that I want. I'd love an open floor plan home with lots of room for having family and church members over and being able to stay a part of things in the living room and dinning room while working in the kitchen. It's still got plenty of plants, but it's also got a whole lot more bookshelves, just because there is more room ;). There is a huge yard, and we have a wrap-around porch with plenty of seats. And I spontaneously bake chocolate chip cookies with small children at 8 o'clock at night quite often. I might want to work on the frequency of that BEFORE it's a reality ;). But once in a while can't hurt...
7:What does your dream garden look like?
It's big. It's got an arbor with a swing. Alllll the vegetables are there, but there are also tulips and daffodils and small, sweet-atmospheric plants in the middle,too.

8:What is your favorite Ice cream?
Ben and Jerry's Half Baked. Yummm!

9: How do you decorate your room?
How *do* I, or what do I aim for? Hahaha...
I love wall colleges, but I haven't done one because I like them all and can't commit to one. Ha! I pretty much love all (cute) wall art, and prefer functional flat surfaces. Color schemes I'm drawn to are blues and neutrals (preferably brown). But... I'm honestly not picky right now as long as it is cute and sentimental. And inspirational. Quote decor is a really big deal for me, haha :). 

10: Do you like Tea, Coffee, or Hot Chocolate better?
Not tea. Don't get me wrong, I love certain teas... but I'm not going to reach for it for a treat. I'm going to go with coffee, because if you know me you know I really love coffee! But I drink hot chocolate about as much because, 1. no caffeine, 2. almost as good ;). (Decaf coffee does not satisfy...)
11: What are 3 things that you plan to do in 10 years?
If I am alive ten years from now, I am going to wake up, eat, and feel emotions. Yes. Nearly impossible to fail. 
I totally cheated here, hahaha. But I can't even wrap my mind around that far without being reminded that... I don't know. I'll be thirty, and I have no idea where God will have me at that point. My goals might not be His plan, and I don't want to fight against that. And that's okay, because I can rest in Him and trust His path for me. 
Ultimately, my hope in life, at any time, no matter what circumstances I am given, are that I would love the Lord with all my heart, that He would use me to encourage those around me, and that I would be content with whatever those circumstances are, using them as He is leading. 

The Facts:

I'm going to do this a little differently. I think, instead of "real facts", I am going to give you a few of the many quotes that I love, because I believe that knowing what words mean a great deal to someone is really one of the best ways to truly know them, and also because, "A drop of ink may make a million think"... 

"I have an obsession with quotes, because other people are so much better at putting my feelings into words than I am."

"For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him. He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken. On God rests my salvation and my glory; my mighty rock, my refuge is God. Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us." -Psalm 62:5-8
"To begin, begin." -William Wordsworth

"If you get tired, learn to rest, not to quit."

"A bible that's falling apart usually belongs to someone who isn't." -Charles Spurgeon

"Prone to wander, Lord I feel it, prone to leave the God I love; here's my heart, O, take and seal it, seal it for Thy courts above." - Robert Robinson

"The power of finding beauty in the humblest things makes home happy and life lovely." - Louisa May Alcott

"You can't truly rest until every area of your life rests in God." - A.W.Tozer

"May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, Oh Lord, my rock and my redeemer." -Psalm 19:14

"Once she stopped rushing through life, she was amazed how much more life she had time for."

"For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them." -Ephesians 2:10

The Nominees:

-Bethani from Gratefully His. Yes, you dear. Because if you can" get Tori back", I can get you back, and I feel somewhat evil today, mwahahaha. Also because I don't think you should neglect your blog so much ;).
-Allison from "All Things Allison Marie". I just found this blog, and I right away subscribed! I thought it would be fun to get to know Allison a bit better :)!
-Daminika from "Walking in the Sonshine". I feel like Daminika has a unique blog... some of us are kind of cookie cutter without meaning to be, but somehow she does everything we do with a little personal twist which is fun :).
-Jessica from "Apples of Gold". Jessica's blog makes me think when I read it. She brings out the small things in a way that strikes you as completely new, you know :)? Also, we once unknowingly wrote blog posts about caring for others from two different sides of the story at the same time, and while I didn't post mine for months because it was kinda raw, I thought it was neat!
-Chelsea from "An Ordinary Pen". I love stalking Chelsea's blog... hahaha ;). Also, I love her blog name and the reasoning behind it!
Annnnnndddd... does anyone else want to say I tagged them ;)? 'Cause right now, the other 6 spots are a free for all, hahaha!

The Questions:

-Who is one person you look up to?
-What is the hardest part about blogging for you?
-Can you "introduce" us to your family?
-What is one blog post you've written that you hope none of your readers miss?
-How old were you were you started blogging, and how did you pick your blog title?
-What is one skill or talent you have that others might not know you have?
-What is your favorite bible verse(s)?
-If what you say in answer to this question was the only thing that you left when you died, what is it you would say?
-When you have free time, what is the first thing you want to do?
-What is your favorite fictional story (or the top few, for those of you like me ;)!)?
-What is one of the quotes that inspires you?

Thank you all for joining me for this tag once again ;)!
Rejoicing in hope,
Bri <3

Friday, April 6, 2018

Cast Your Cares

As I was reading the other day, selections from "The Cure for Care" by J.R. Miller were shared, and I found the whole article... I wanted to share some of that article with you here, but if you would like to read the whole thing, it can be found here :). 

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"...Refer every disturbing thing to Him, that He may bear the burden of it. “But why should I have to make it known to Him?” asks some one. “He knows all about it already. Why must I take it to Him?” It is reason enough that He has asked us to do it; and if we will not make it known to Him, can we complain if He does not help us? He needs us to learn to confide in Him and to flee to Him in every moment of perplexity or pressure. Whenever there comes into our experience a difficulty, an annoyance—anything that tends to produce irritation or anxiety or alarm or confusion—we are to carry it at once to God. We are to get it somehow out of our unskilled hands and off our frail shoulder into the hands and over upon the shoulder of Christ. It is not enough to kneel down and say a prayer, nor is it enough to pray about the particular matter that worries us, asking for help or deliverance. Only the most simple-hearted definiteness in prayer will meet the need. We must bring the very perplexity itself and put it out of our hands into God’s, that He may work it out for us. 

We are to bring the matter as literally to Him as we would carry a broken watch to the watchmaker’s, leaving it for him to repair and readjust. A little child playing with a handful of cords, when they begin to get into a tangle, goes at once to her mother, that her patient fingers may unravel the snarl. How much better this than to pull and tug at the cords until the tangle becomes inextricable! May not many of us learn a lesson from the little child? Would it not be better for us, whenever we find the slightest entanglement in any of our affairs, or the arising of any perplexity, to take it at once to God, that His skillful hands may set it right? Then, having taken it to Him, and put it into His hands, we are to leave it with Him; having gotten it off our own shoulder upon His, we are to allow it to remain there. 

But it is just at this point that most of us fail. We tell God about our worries, and then go on worrying still as if we had never gone to Him at all, or as if He had refused to help us. We pray about our cares, but do not cast them off. We make supplication, but do not unload our burdens. Praying does us no good. It makes us no more contented, or submissive, or patient, or peaceful. We do not get the worries out of our own hands at all. This is the vital point in the whole matter. 

Or perhaps we do cast the burden upon God while we are praying, and feel for the moment a strange sense of joy in our soul. We rise and go a few steps as light-hearted as an angel. We have given God our cares to keep. But in a little while we have gathered up all the old burdens and anxieties again, and have them once more on our own shoulder, and we go bowing under them, fretting and worrying as before. 

But is that the best the religion of Christ can do for us? Is that the full meaning of the privilege expressed in so many golden promises in the Scriptures? Is a little moment’s rest from anxiety in the midst of long days of care all that it is possible for us to obtain?

...We are permitted to roll our care entirely over on God and to let it stay there. We are to put the broken plan, the shattered hope, the tangled work, the complicated affair, into the hands of the God of providence, leaving the ordering and outcome of it to His wisdom. The provocation, the friction, the burden that presses sorely, the annoyance, the hindrance,—instead of permitting ourselves to be vexed, exasperated or disturbed by them, we are quietly to turn the matter over to God, and then go on calmly to the next duty that comes to our hand. And, having done this, we are to cease to worry. We have given the perplexity to God. We have asked Him to think for us, plan for us, and take the ordering of the affair into His own hands. It is our matter, therefore, no longer, but His. 

Should we not be willing to trust Him? We put our worldly affairs and interests into the hands of men, and feel that they are safe. We commit our sicknesses to the skill of our physician. Business complications we confide to the wisdom of our lawyer. A broken machine we turn over to a mechanic. Is not God wise enough to manage the complications of our lives, and to bring order and beauty out of them? Has He not skill enough? Is He not our Father? and will He not always do the very best and wisest thing for us? Should we not trust Him, and cease to be anxious about anything that we have committed to Him? Is not anxiety doubt and unbelief? and is not doubt and unbelief sin?..."

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We give our worries to God, but go on worrying still, and this is the cause of our cares. 

I don't know about you, but  I know I have been guilty of this many times. I know God can and will answer all prayers in the best way, but so often after prayer I am left worrying that the answer will be different than what I would like, or will not happen quickly. But when I pray and leave those burdens at His feet, and do not pick them up again in fear, I am able to trust Him. "Is not doubt and unbelief sin?" When we doubt our Savior's plan or timing or answer, we are saying we know better what should happen. We, the fallible creatures with limited sight, doubt the plans of the infallible sovereign God who not only sees but has ordained the entire view of our life since before the world was made. Yet He continues to invite us to "Come unto Me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls." (Matthew 11:28-29)

And when our hearts are trusting and aligned in Him, the cares of this world are no longer ours to bear, but simple another way for Christ to show His power in our weakness, and we find rest. 

Rejoicing in Hope,
Bri <3

Is there something I may prayer with you about, dear friends? Let us give all our troubles to Him and encourage each other in fellowship through Him!

Monday, April 2, 2018

March is Over...

Time to look back at the month!!!


Noah was cute, obviously. Also, he turned two! I was visiting my grandparents, so I missed the day, but we celebrated later :). Mama and Daddy took him to the park, and Mama said Daddy set a pinecone on a stump at the park to take pictures of it, so Noah found a pinecone and set it up on a smaller stump... then chased after the geese trying to give them a flower <3.


I made charts in my journaling bible of the genealogies in Genesis 5 and 11!


My Grandpa and Grandma graciously opened their home to me for over a week, and gave me the use of their car. I had a wonderful time, browsing antique shops and thrift stores, going through old family photos, and watching documentaries, with Grandma, in between getting some driving hours in. And Grandma remembered that dark chocolate is the best ;).


And I spent the evenings petting their cat. She was afraid of my pink skirt (?), but she was a little attention seeker, and ate a couple spoons of my yogurt every time I would pull some out of the fridge, haha.


I found our dishes. The ones we use. Everyday. At an antique shop.... (for your information, we got ours when Abbi was a baby. Guess who just reached antique status. The nine year old, yep.)


Mama and I took the little boys shoe shopping. Peter went too, but he was behind my chair, haha. Mama gave them their bagel, and Peter goes, "WOAH, that's a big one!" Haha! They usually only get half, because, I mean, it's practically the size of the two year old's head.


Jojo turned 4, too :)!!! And our cousin turned 1, and Peter is about to turn 6 and Aunt Amber's baby is due any day... these little boys birthdays are all on top of each other!


Our birds are cute. And messy. I just wiped down the cage and gave them their bath, but it needs a deep cleaning like.... every day. Haha! They are adorable, though. And so fluffy after a bath!

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Peter, holding a strand of Tori's hair and following her until she stopped and looked at him: "I was tracking you to give you a kiss."

Josiah as I told him goodnight, going through our "I love you routine": "You forgot the other thing. The dot and pie thing."
It took me a few questions to realize he wanted me to sing a little baby-song that says "You are my cupcake"!

Mama, after reading a review someone left on my shop: "It must be nice to have your job be taking people's dreams and making them a reality."
Abbi: "I want to do that!"
Mama: "You can. My dream is to have good little girls who are kind to each other and keep their room clean."
Abbi: "YES!!!! I will make Emmi do that!!!!"
Not exactly what was meant....

Josiah: "*Every*body is crazy... except God and Jesus and the Holy Spirit!"

Me: *switches out my long sleeved outfits for my short sleeved outfits as it gets warmer*
Me for three days: "IS IT COLDER TO Y'ALL, OR IS IT JUST ME?!?!??!!"
Day 4: "....oh. It's just me. I packed away my long sleeves..."

Peter: "Did Adam and Eve have children?"

*Bethi is putting Noah down for a nap*
*I walk past*
Noah: "BRI! Help me!!!!"

Mama: "Okay, Bethi, *I* am not that bad! Not even I dust hole punches."
Me: "...." should I admit it? yeah, sure...
"... I have done that before."

Noah sees a picture of a squirrel: "Moose! Moose!!!"
He meant mouse... if that makes any more sense ;).

Can we all just agree that if we call a wrong number, we apologize instead of acting like it is the recipient's fault or hanging up without saying anything? Please? ::sigh::

Josiah: "I want to go to the chicken nugget place, but not get pink medicine."
He went to Sonic after going to the doctor last month, hahahaha...

My Aunt and I, literally at the same time, but in different rooms:
*surveys the situation*
To ourselves, but outloud: "Okay."
*reaches for the closest lightswitch*
*turn to stare at each other and laugh*

*a commercial on TV* "This meal is so cheap... it costs nothing!"
My Grandpa: "Nothing? She stole that organic chicken breast then."

*roach on the ceiling*
*Andrew goes to vacuum it off with the shop-vac*
*shop-vac is set to blow OUT, roach is blown into the bookshelf*
::shudder:: We got it!

Abbi as Mama takes the little girls out to buy shoes: *waves at those of us left at home* "Bye, trouble!"
?!?!??!?!

Tori gave me frequent updates the first day I was gone about how Noah was making it very clear he missed me, and it was sooooo sad, but to her credit (?) she let me know she hadn't told him I was with our cousin James, because he might think I had replaced him with another baby (?!)...

Tori: "Today Emmi got a gummy packet that had a total of 4 gummies in it."

Tori: "What kind of chocolate is it?"
Me: "Dark chocolate with sea salt and almonds! Or some of it has salted caramel."
Tori: "Oh, never mind. I probably wouldn't like it. It sounds fancy."

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Also, I thought I would share this post with you, because it was really good. And with that, I am heading off, because things are so crazy lately that we had to split Joey's birthday celebration into two days, and he is about to open gifts :D! It's hard to believe my buddy, Joeyakins, our little "Seaweed", is 4 now!

Rejoicing in hope,
Bri <3

Friday, March 30, 2018

The Liebster Award Tag!


Hello to all my wonderful readers <3! I have missed blogging the past couple of weeks, but life has been full! I went to visit my Mom's family for a week, and Noah turned two last week, Josiah turns four tomorrow, and Resurrection is coming (I hope each of you have a wonderful time with your families remembering the beautiful, sinless, sacrificial death, burial and resurrection of the one Lord and Savior!). I am here today, though, to fill out the Liebster Tag I was awarded with not once, not twice, but THREE times in a week right before I went upstate!!! This award has been going around... I don't even know how long. I am pretty sure it's been a thing since before I started blogging over eleven years ago, but I can't find anything about it's origins (except that Liebster is a German word), so I can't prove it. I have wanted to do this tag almost ever time I have seen it making another resurgence, but hadn't ever been nominated before... but when it rains, it pours ;)! So here I am (finally -Tori saw me copying the questions and was like, "Oo!", I think she was giving up hope) to do a three in one tag! Thank you ladies :)!!!


THE RULES

1. Acknowledge the blog(s) that gave it to you and display the award: Little Bit of Sunshine, Forever Persuaded, and The Book Wyrm!

2.. Answer the 11 questions that the blogger gives you.
3. Give 11 random facts about yourself.
4. Nominate 11 blogs.
5. Notify those blogs of their nomination.
6. Give them 11 questions to answer.
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These questions are the ones given to me by Maddy from Little Bit of Sunshine. Most of you should know Maddy, because we did a giveaway for my Etsy shop together last August :)! Maddy is so sweet, and I thought it was neat that she tagged me - last December, she did an "open" tag and I asked if I could fill it out, and I think she remembered that :). Thanks, girl! 

1. EXTROVERT OR INTROVERT?
Hello there, I am Bri, and on the MBTI personality quiz, I test as an ESFJ-T, or an Extroverted Sensory Feeling Judge with Turbulent leanings. Very heavy on the Feeling and Turbulence side of things. The only issue with this? My brother Andrew got the same thing. He answered the questions MORE introverted than I did, and yet came out MORE extroverted than I am, and let's just say, we are nowhere close to the same sort of person, and so my faith in the accuracy of this test took quite a blow at that time, hahaha! But for all practical answering purposes, ESFJ(T) is my personality.

2. FAVORITE MOVIE ACTOR/ACTRESS?
Hmmm. Interesting question. I feel like a lot of people follow all these actors, and know everything about them, and watch some movies just because so-and-so is in it, while I am over here, Tori is saying "So-and-so is in this movie", and I am like, "Who is that?" And she has to tell me who else so-and-so plays, before I realize that I have seen five movies with this so-and-so in it, haha. I really don't have a favorite. The ones I do actually know, I don't prefer over any others I know. If it counts, Tori and I talk about Harrison Ford most often, because every time he lets his personality come out (which is a lot, he can't mask it) we get a glimpse of Josiah's future as an old man. Harrison Ford flies planes and seems to make a joke of looking down on the world. Josiah has already told us he wants to fly a plane when he grows up "so he can look down on the world". It just fits.

3. SOMETHING THAT MAKES YOU EXTREMELY HAPPY? 
Something?! Somethings...  Bible journaling, and productive early mornings, and relaxed late nights, and spending time with people I love, and words that are so encouraging you don't know how to respond.

4. COKE OR PEPSI?
I guess Pepsi... but if I am going to drink a soda, it's almost sure to be a root beer.

5. IF YOU COULD LIVE ANYWHERE FOR A MONTH WHERE WOULD IT BE?
If I could live anywhere for a month, it would not be far from home, and it would not be alone or with strangers. I just spent a week away from home, and I loved being with my Grandparents and Aunts, but I missed my family and just being home, too. I would have to have a good reason to be gone that long, and it would have to be somewhere I knew what to expect. So really my only options are with my grandparents or staying with some friends in VA, haha!

6. HAVE YOU EVER VISITED A PLACE OUTSIDE OF THE USA?
No, I have not. But I would love to visit Scotland/Ireland area sometime (it's so beautiful!).

7. FAVORITE SONG EVER?
No. Not this question. I can answer either/or questions, or yes/no questions, and sometimes even what do you think questions. But I can.not. answer favorite questions. And favorite ever?! That's worse!!!
I have now sat here for 4 minutes trying to think of a maybe answer, and I now give up. Sorry.

8. HOW MANY SIBLINGS DO YOU HAVE?
I have 13 younger siblings, but four are waiting for us at the feet of Jesus, so until that joyful reunion in heaven, I have 4 sisters and 4 brothers here... and Baby Bear, who will either create a tie or pull the girls further ahead. What do y'all think?!

9. IF YOU COULD EAT LUNCH WITH ANYONE, WHO WOULD IT BE?
I am assuming this question was designed to find out what celebrity I would like to glean wisdom from, ha, but if you know me, you know that's not how I work. I would go out to lunch with my mom, my aunt, or my friend Katie.... and since I get to go out with my mom frequently and Aunt Tessa and I just went out, I guess next up is Katie, but since she lives 6 hours away, that's kind of unlikely ;).

10. DO YOU LIKE BLUEGRASS MUSIC?
I have listened to one Bluegrass music CD, the Maxwell family's. I like that CD! But I don't know if that gives me license to answer for the whole genre.

11. HAVE YOU EVER MET SOMEBODY FAMOUS? 
Famous to whom? I have met the Maxwell family, the Mally sisters, Pastor Voddie Baucham, Ken Ham... and the Huzinger family, who are not actually famous at all, but they adopted a little girl from Pleven and it was literally the neatest thing ever when we ran into them, because I had prayed and raised money for little Penny, and to just randomly meet her <3? I enjoyed that encounter more than the "famous" people, though it was fun to talk to those influential christians, as well!

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These questions came from Abby from "Forever Persuaded". Abby has apparently been lurking on my blog for a while ;), but I just "met" her this month when she let me know that she tagged me :)! So that was fun. Thank you again, Abby :)!!!
1. What was your favorite childhood book, and why? 
Hmmmm.... well. I grew up reading "The Hiding Place", "Little House on the Prairie", "Anne of Green Gables" and some of Louisa May Alcott's books yearly. I loved each of these stories! But the only one I still read yearly is "An Old-Fashioned Girl", so I suppose that would be the one to answer this question with. There is just something about the perspective of this book that I love to read and re-experiance, even if it does have a silly love triangle in it... haha :).
2. What was your favorite childhood Bible story?
Outside of the gospels, the book of the bible I read most growing up was the book of Ruth. It was a really beautiful story, but I didn't realize it's true worth until years later. Ruth is the Proverbs 31 woman if you ask me, and the fact that she was a gentile, "grafted in", is neat for us reading it today, grafted into the spiritual family tree ourselves, don't you think? I have considered doing a series on the book of Ruth in the past, but I haven't yet... I don't know if I will. But it's at the back of my mind ;).

3. Which parent are you more like, and what are your similarities to them?
Both? I feel like I am a very good mix of my parents in every respect, looks and personality. In fact, my Grandma and I were talking about this just last week. She said she thought I looked like Mama, and I told her, well, I look most like my siblings who *obviously* take after Mama's side, but even though I look most like those siblings, I don't feel like I look anymore like Mama than Daddy... I don't look like either of them, even though I look enough like them for you to say I look like either of them. It's kind of the same thing with my personality. I think my dad thinks I take after him, but I am a good mix (Josiah is the one that truly takes after him, haha!). Mama and I think a lot alike and are both very traditionally minded and emotionally invested, while Daddy and I have a lot of the same get-at-it-and-then-don't-stop-until-it's-done tendencies (Mama has a bit of that too, but hasn't taken it to such an extreme, haha), and our family all teases us for always being the last two to the car on Sunday, haha :).

4. What pair of shoes do you most frequently wear?
It's getting warmer here in SC, so that means that I am going to live in sandals, probably either my brown open heeled or my white leather, until November, depending on my outfit. BUT, for the past four months, I lived in my brown boots, because I love them! (Daddy didn't, though... They made us closer to the same height ;).)

5.  What was the last song you listened to?
*blinks* Good question. Oh! A Resurrection hymn melody that a friend shared on FB. But I honestly cannot think what before that, so I am glad I listened to that, haha!

6. You’re handed two tickets: One to Disneyland, and one for a round trip to Rome. Which one do you pick, and why?
Ummm... ha. Neither. Honestly. I have no desire to go either place. But if I was forced to pick one, I would pick the Disneyland one, not because I want to go to Disneyland, because, let's face it, Disneyland sounds just like the fair except 1. without craft and animal shows, which is really all I care about at the fair, though I enjoy one ride on the faris wheel and some funnel cake, and 2. more putting yourself out there, because I am told the characters come up to shake your hand all the time. It doesn't sound fun. So why would I pick that ticket? For the following reasons... 1. It's closer to home, meaning it would be a shorter time away, hahaha, and 2. my best friend lives about 30 minutes away from it, and would most assuredly meet up with me ;). Ignoring Disneyland to talk to her wouldn't be a bad way to work out the situation, as long as I didn't have to ride the rides, haha. A friend told me they were usually terrifying.

7. If you could travel back in time, what top three events would you witness?
Huh, I never thought of this question before. Probably one of Jesus' sermons, one of the life events of Paul, and the landing of the pilgrims in America. It would be so neat to witness all of these events that are so important to us as Christians in America!

8. CDs or records?
CDs... it's kind of silly to think about starting a record collection with no record player ;).

9. If you’ve seen/read them, Anne of Green Gables movies or books?
"Anne's House of Dreams" and "Rainbow Valley" are my favorite parts of anything involving Anne, so I guess the books... but I feel like I enjoy the first two movies from the mini-series equally well as the books. The third mini series, though... I've only seen that once. That was terrible. If you are considering watching it and love the books, you might want to pretend it's not an Anne story.

10. Wall calendar or pocket planner or neither?
Hahaha! Neither. Because, I have a great big binder that I keep a stack of papers in as my planner, haha! I should just start a bullet journal, but, there is so much to get hung up on keeping one...

11. What is your favorite TV show?
When Calls the Heart. (Tori is probably rolling her eyes right now that I am bringing up this show again, but you asked!) I am behind right now, so no spoilers. Unlike Google, who gave me a recommended article that even just the title + snippet shared on the home page gave away the biggest spoiler of the season right away. *glares at Google* But can I just say, I hate when they take the best character and give them the best story line and then just ruin it all later?

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And these last questions come from Tori from "The Book Wyrm". Who is Tori? I'm not sure.
Hahaha, just kidding, just kidding. Tori is my oldest-younger sister, and she's the queen of puns, a wonderfully humorous blogg(hopp)er, and musical artist :)!

1. What is your favorite time period for fiction books to be set in?
The 1800's. I love that time period, as mentioned in my last facts about me post, and it definitely carries over into books :).

2. Fictional movies, or movies based off a real person?
Hmmmmm, this is hard. See, it really depends on what SORT of movie it is. And... I just like a good movie, I don't usually care how the story came to be, haha. I am going to say that I like movies *done well* and based off a real person best, but that usually a movie has a better chance of being done better if it is fiction but based off of real life. If that makes sense?

3. Favorite preacher/pastor? (e.g., Charles Spurgon, R.C. Sproul, John MacArthur.)
Well, I have to say Charles Spurgeon. I love to read his writings, he can pack so much truth into one quote! His writing is always a refreshing reminder to focus on the Lord. I have to give a bit of credit to our VA Pastor, as well, though. There is a lot about that church I miss!

4. Least favorite movie character?
I thought this was movie actor at first, and I was going to refuse to answer, because Tori knows my harsh feelings on this answer, and it would be rude to share them here, hahahah! But since it's movie *character*, I guess I can answer...
Hmmm.
OKAY, THERE IS ONE. I am thinking of one in particular that I always say I hate it whenever the character comes on the screen. But now I am drawing a blank.
I hate the king of Alice in Wonderland, if that counts. But that is no fault of his own at all, I promise. So I don't feel that is fair.
...whatever.

5. What do you think about Van Gogh's paintings? (Just curious, I've heard differing opinions about them.)
Honestly, they seem messy and boxy all at the same time, and they do not speak to me at all. I don't want to say he was a bad artist, but his technique was definitely not my style ;).

6. On a similar note, do you feel like Charles Dicken's works are intriguing or dry?
I have only ever read "A Christmas Carol", but I love it! So I want to say they are intriguing, but I guess time will tell ;).

7. Favorite language? (Even if you don't understand a word of it.) I honestly find listening to spanish fascinating, but one of the elders of our church showed us an India bible last year and I fell in love with the lettering. That was gorgeous... if they do all their writing like that, I am jealous, haha! But despite those facts, I am learning Swahili ;).

8. Are you able eat white meat or grapes without inspecting them thoroughly first?
Never, never, never. And if you can, are you even human? I can't eat strawberries or clementines without inspection either. Or mozerella cheese. Or turkey.
I inspect my food a lot.

9. Dream job?
My goal is to be an in-home assistant to families with special needs children! I am going to have to get some experience before I can jump into that, though, and I don't plan on working after having children, so we'll see if that comes about. It's what I am working towards as my job goal, though :).

10. Favorite name?
I don't have just one. I used to read the baby name book by the hour, haha! All names are fascinating to me. One that I absolutely love is Adelina, but I don't know that I would ever use it... it might feel out of place with my other favorites. We'll see!

11. Thing you're best at? (Or maybe thing people tell you you're best at, even though you think you're better at something else.) (And it has to be something NICE.)
*starts to write five different things* *is stopped by that "NICE" each and every time* Oops.
Well. I was once told I was "the mom friend", and I took it as one of the nicest compliments I ever got. Does that count as a thing I can be good at, being the mom friend? Because that's pretty much who I am, though I lose that ability under stress.

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Now, for 11 facts about me! Random. Facts. I am done with those, people. I can't think of anymore, hahaha. Soooooo, I am just going to give you regular ol' facts, facts that will be useful to new readers who drop by thanks to this tag. It sounds like the best plan to me ;). 

1. I am saved, redeemed, and honored to be the daughter of the only true King, who bled and died to take away my sins. This is the greatest gift and title I could ever have bestowed on me!
2. At 20, I am the oldest of my wonderful parents' 5 girls, 4 boys, baby on the way, and 4 babies in heaven.
3. I was homeschooled all of my school years! This was another wonderful blessing that I do not take lightly. 
4. I run an Etsy shop (that is currently majorly under some potential redesign, so it's kind of empty right now, haha). But I am still excepting custom orders! Just saying ;). 
5.  I have a heart for special needs adoption, and volunteer at special needs respites.
6. I love Mondays, the first day of the month, to-do lists, and even deadlines (though the deadlines can also stress me out). They are all great motivation!
7. I have been blogging for over 11 years, and my blog has taken many different paths since I started, but I think I am really growing into what my blog is meant to be, lately, and I am grateful for each of you joining me on the journey :). 
8. If I were asked to send someone a link to my blog for them to get to know me a bit better, I probably wouldn't send them to my "about me" page. The posts I feel best share my heart and who I am are these; "While I was a Sinner", written a few years ago as I was going through a dry season of my life, and this one, a little more recent and part of my unofficial series on my year's word, Rest; "Beautiful, Messy, Dependent." But you can feel free to check out my about me page, too ;).
9. I am an animal person, love being outside, believe that the darker the chocolate is the better, cannot give up writing, love to curl up with little ones and read books or listen to music, will try my hand at any craft project that you throw at me (but some only once... *cough cough* origami (actually, even that I did 4 times, and hated it every time.)), and will talk your head off for hours once we get really started. 
10. My favorite book of the bible is Romans, and I love to sit down to a bible study and bible journaling!
11. I guess I should note that I am quite the procrastinator... since that is literally why I am working on this post right now... ha.

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And now, I would like to nominate...

1. Hosanna from Having a Heart Like His. This is literally my new favorite blog, y'all. The way Hosanna writes about the things she writes about... <3. 
2. Molly from A Ramble Through the Woods. Molly's blog is adorable! I mean, it's inspired by a line from Anne of Green Gables, it was bound to have a whimsy feel.
3. Alyssa from Here is Love. Not only a blogger friend, this sweet girl is a real-life friend <3!
4. Ashley from Precious Moments. Ashley is a blogger friend turned real life friend :)! I love how I have been able to create friendships through this insignificant blog!
5. Julia from The Barefoot Gal. I'd still read Julia's blog if all she ever posted was monthly recaps. 'Nuff said. 
6. Micaiah from Notebooks and Novels. Micaiah has a cute little blog, and I love hearing about her family!
7. Katie from A Writer's Faith. Usually, I'm not interested in blogs that are about nothing but writing projects, I don't know why. But I have loved Katie's since I found it, so she must be a good blogger, right ;)?
8. Elizabeth Anne from Elizabeth Anne. So much honesty dealt out with truth, here. I love this blog.
9. Grace from Totally Graced. Grace is awesome. Even though I know nothing about theater, even her posts about that interest me. 
10. Hannah from Letters to Myself. When I first found Hannah's blog, there was a post about confidence coming from the Lord that felt like it was written for me. It really encouraged me, so obviously I stuck around.
11. Brianna from No End Of Books. Brianna was my 25th blog follower earlier this year, which was neat, and so I wanted to include her in my nominations! (I promise I didn't bribe her to become that 25th follower with this, I just thought it would be fun as I was typing this out ;).)
If anyone else wants to do this as well, feel free to snag my questions and pretend I am the one who nominated you, too :)!

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And now, for your questions to answer! 

1. What is a quote that you really love?
2. What is a favorite/most vivid childhood memory?
3. What is one thing God has been taking you through/teaching you this year?
4. How did your blog start, and where do you hope to see it in the future?
5. What is the longest you have lived in one place? 
6. Do you see yourself as an optimist, pessimist, realist, or opportunist? 
7. What is your typical go-to when you try a new restaurant?
8. Do you re-read books? If so, which have you re-read most?
9. If you could go back in time, what would you tell yourself five years ago?
10. What is your favorite part of your every day routine?
11. How do you do your devotions (by a schedule, with a study guide, is scripture memorization part of that daily time, etc.)?

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This. Took. Hours. Hahaha! 33 questions is quite a lot to answer ;). Now it's time to make cinnamon rolls for Josiah's birthday, clean the house, and work on some crocheting, since I have gotten the project I was using to procrastinate out of the way ;). Ha. But this was a lot of fun, too! I hope you all enjoy <3!

Rejoicing in Hope, 
Bri


Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Blessed be the Name of the Lord

If you have been reading my blog for many months, you might know what a rough year last year was for our family. I haven't talked about it much more than to mention that it happened... it was something that touched a lot of our life, but it didn't really lend itself to being shared candidly. For those of you who haven't been reading very long, Mama suffered two miscarriages, an emergency surgery, and lots of testing last year. This was hard for our whole family, but especially for Mama, understandably. Thanksgiving arrived and I believe we were all conscience of the people who would forever be missing from our table; Haven had been due to arrive right at Thanksgiving, and the loss of little Selah was still fresh, and both of these things made the fact that we had two other children/siblings, Micah and Michael, already in waiting in heaven even closer to our heart.

But the Lord sent a gift to make that day of remembrance one which brought us much to be thankful for, as well. Because in His grace, the day ended with this news...

















The grace of the Lord is so wonderful, His gifts are merciful, and I am so thankful for the joy He brought out of our sorrow <3. This precious little one is due to arrive in our family this July, and the Lord has blessed Mama and Baby Bear with wonderful health! We would appreciate prayers for this little one's arrival, but also praise that the Lord has given this life to be treasured, not as a replacement to the little ones who touched our lives so much in such a short time, but as proof that our Father cares for His children <3!

"Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning." -Psalm 30:5

"O Joy, that seekest me through pain, I cannot close my heart to Thee; I trace the rainbow through the rain, And feel the promise is not vain. That morn shall tearless be." -Oh Love That Will Not Let Me Go"

"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change." -James 1:17