Thursday, June 30, 2011

Bad mood garage.

Fair warning – this post is pretty darn boring. I was extremely busy all day yesterday, and thus have very little exciting or pretty to share today. :/

Our garage had become an instant source of bad mood for me lately. With all the house projects, the massive fence project, and the fact that we don’t have a garage door opener/remote for it so we don’t use it for our cars all contributed to a big ol’ mess that covered the entire concrete floor.

I was pretty sick of getting in a bad mood every time I walked through our garage to let the dog out, so I took an hour to purge & organize the space. I didn’t take an official before picture because I didn’t want to remember the yucky bad-mood-inducing mess, but you can kind of see a small sliver of it in the background of this picture from way back when we purchased the fence materials.


Let’s just say it was pretty comparable to our hoarder-ish room, but with the smell of trash & a random toilet in the corner that used to reside in our guest bathroom. Just being honest.


Here’s the much more organized and simplified garage now {still not pretty, but hey, it’s a garage – what did ya expect?!}


That corner above is the leftover materials we get to return from our fencing project that’s now COMPLETE!!!! {Money back in our pocket = bonus! It’s also a leftover door…not sure where it came from, and a pile of demo’ed house materials {i.e. baseboards, range vent, ceiling dry wall, etc.} that we need to take to the dumpster.


I organized our tools so that we can actually find a phillips head screw driver when we need it, rather than searching for one in every room of the house, the basement, and the garage.


And we wound up with a huge pile ready to be purged – busted hoses left from the previous owners, old shower curtain rod, boxes, and more.

I can proudly say that I no longer get in a bad mood by walking into our garage. Success! Even the pup can smile about that…


I had to laugh when he picked up this broken piece from his red Frisbee. Snapped a quick, blurry cell phone pic. It looks just like a massive smile to me. :)


Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Summer evening with friends.

Yesterday evening, we enjoyed a perfect summer evening with friends from our church.

Good friends…


Cute baby in a Red’s outfit…


Delicious summer food – spiced nuts, pepper & gouda bruschetta, fresh salad bar with all the summery toppings, key lime pie and lemon bars for dessert…


And even sparklers at dusk…


What a lovely evening!


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Jason Gray concert.

Friday evening, Eugene & I were blessed with a fantastic concert at a local church. A men’s fellowship group sponsored & organized the concert, and Eugene’s dad, who is part of the men’s fellowship group, even shared a little of his heart for the group’s mission with all 500 or so people attending.


Jason Gray, who is best known for his hit song, “More Like Falling In Love” and newly released song “I am New”,  put on not only an amazing vocal concert, but even more impressive and inspiring to me were his words. He shared raw experiences he had struggling with his severe speech impediment {stuttering} and how God’s worked that for His glory in Jason’s life. {Read more about him in his bio here.}


Between each song, he shared wisdom from scripture & the what inspired him to pen the lyrics. His words were so full of honesty and packed with his real, undeniable passion for Christ – I couldn’t help but get goosebumps.


One of his lyrics said: “The longer I walk with you, the less I know. I had the answer ten years ago, and I feel time has come for me to hand it to You and let it go.” I love that, because I agree that the more I get to know God and who He really is, the more I realize I really don’t know much at all! And the perfect response to that: give all the questions, unanswered prayers, decisions – my whole life – to Him.


One other topic that he spoke on that really hit home for me was about being God’s beloved. It’s not uncommon grow up hearing how terrible, sinful, wretched, and miserable failures we are compared to Christ. That we all fall short and will never be good enough to deserve God’s love. While that’s true – we all do sin, we all do fall short – often times, that gets engrained in our minds that we become extremely critical of ourselves.  We never feel worthy of anything. We’ve prayed, Lord, we don’t deserve to be your children. We’re worthless and failures.” Jason Gray explained that if his young sons ever sulked around his house saying how unworthy they were to live there, he {as their father who loves them deeply} would be so saddened by that. God loves us, and is enthralled with us, even calls us His beloved {Song of Solomon 6:3, Psalm 45:11, 1 John 3:1-2}. My brain naturally falls into the self-critic approach; it’s so easy for me to be so hard on myself. But what a shame it is that I walk around God’s house sulking feeling completely unworthy all the time. It must make Him sad to see me beat myself down.

The truth is, God chose me. He picked me. Me. He finds me beautiful. He loves me more than I will ever know or comprehend. In fact, I am even called the righteousness of God. “For He {God} made Him {Jesus} who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him {Jesus.}” 2 Corinthians 5:21. Now that’s amazing. He makes me totally worthy. {And the same goes for you too!}


After Jason Gray spoke from the heart & touched mine {and probably 499 other people there}, he sang a great song with the sweet lyrics, “Remind me who I am to you. That I belong to you. I’m the one you love, and I will be enough.”

{Update – I found this video. Jason Gray says it much better himself below}

Needless to say, I enjoyed the concert. :) Oh, and if ya want more info on Jason Gray, his website is:

Have a happy day, blogland!


Monday, June 27, 2011

Elves paid me a visit.

When I was at work all day Friday, some incredibly helpful, generous, and talented elves {aka my parents} paid my house a visit. Or maybe I should call them worker-bees since they kicked some major curb appeal butt {and have an affection for bees.}  If you can remember, Eugene, his sister, & I pulled out the bushes lining the front of our house a week or so ago. This got the ball rolling.


My mom, who loves to garden & is ah-mazing at it {see here}, spoiled me rotten by giving us eight different varieties of plants, plus my dad threw in some deep black mulch, to use at our house. Not only did they give us all that, but they also showed up and did the dirty work! {Can you say wondrous thing times a million?!}

My dad brought his tiller, they leveled the area in the front yard where we removed the grown-over flower bed and stones as well as the huge ruts left in our yard from our roofing company.


Now it looks like this. Praise the Lord for being able to mow the front yard without getting whiplash from all the bumps! Now we just need to throw out some grass seed & we’re in business. Better Homes & Garden, here we come! Haha. ;)


Then they planted the new plants in a great lay-out in front of our house & covered it with mulch. Look at our pretty landscaping! Plus, in two years, all the plants will be full grown, much larger, and blooming too. Oh, happy day!


For those of you with a green thumb, or at least interested in plants, here’s the eight varieties of plants my mom picked – all perfect for part shade, all perennials.


And here’s the breakdown…

Front of the house

    • Loosestrife ‘Firecracker’
    • Delphinium ‘Cherry Blossom’
    • Dwarf Lady’s Mantle
    • Goat’s beard
    • Cranesbill ‘Vision Violet’
    • Patriot Hosta
    • Day Lillies





Side of the house {no pics, sorry}

    • Spotted Dead Nettle ‘Pink Pewter’
    • Lamb’s Ear {existing}
    • Lemon Balm {existing}
    • To add: Echinacea

Back of the house {which had nothing but grass}

    • Forget-Me-Not ‘Bluesylva’
    • Ostrich Ferns



I’m over-the-moon with the generosity from my parents. I love love love the landscaping {so much}! We’ve certainly come a long way – dead bush, ugly bushes, leaves everywhere, spotty grass, stoned & overgrown flower bed in the middle of the yard…


To this pretty pic…


A few more before & afters…

IMG_9824 IMG_3326

Much better…


Seriously, I have the best elves, worker bees, parents ever!


Friday, June 24, 2011

Faith for decisions.

Yesterday was a full day – I took it off from work, spent the morning garage sale shopping with my sister-in-law {it was her birthday}, spent the afternoon at a retirement party for Eugene’s grandpa, spent the evening having dinner with Eugene’s family for his sister’s birthday.


We rode to the retirement party with Eugene’s grandma, and I got to hear stories of his grandpa’s career path from teaching his first year making just $4,000, to having children & looking for a better paying job, to how God’s worked his career path out to become a very successful and highly respected business man.


It was a great reminder of the crazy career paths we can take, and how situations change and new opportunities come along. More importantly, it was an encouragement that God worked out Eugene’s grandpa’s career and prospered him. It’s such a testimony to be an honorable businessman who glorifies and trusts God not only in his personal life, but {even more difficult at times} in his professional life as well.

To all my prayer-warrior readers out there, if you wouldn’t mind, please say a prayer for me. Without divulging many details right now, I’m headed straight into a fork in the career road with potentially a very tough decision to make. I would love prayer that God would make the right decision obvious to me, give me wisdom, and that the Holy Spirit would lead me {and that I would be smart enough to see it & follow!}

Because of that, even though I know I shouldn’t, I’m stressing. Therefore, I’m going to flood myself/this blog post with Bible verses on faith. Outside the retirement party, there was a beautiful field of wheat {I love wheat}, and some unique, pretty flowers. Of course, I snapped some pictures that will go nicely between the waves of scripture.

It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed. (Deuteronomy 31:8)


I sought the Lord, and he answered me, and delivered me from all my fears. (Psalm 34:4)


Trust in the Lord and do good; so you will live in the land, and enjoy security. Take delight in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him, and he will act. Be still before the Lord, and wait patiently for him. (Psalm 37:3-5, 7a)


Those who seek the Lord lack no good thing. (Psalm 34:10b)


Those who love me, I will deliver; I will protect those who know my name. When they call to me, I will answer them; I will be with them in trouble, I will rescue them and honor them. With long life I will satisfy them, and show them my salvation. (Psalm 91:14-16)


See, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh; is anything too hard for me? (Jeremiah 32:27)


Fear of others will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe. (Proverbs 29:25)


Be strong and bold; have no fear or dread of them, because it is the Lord your God who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed. (Deuteronomy 31:6,8)


When I called, you answered me; you made me bold and stouthearted. (Psalm 138:3)

{I love this picture combo.}

Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord! (Psalm 27:14)

To my prayer-warriors, thank you. Have a fabulous weekend!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Raising the bar.

When we first painted our bathroom tile, we temporarily hung our 6’ tall shower curtain where the last one was…


I had a plan in mind to add fabric to the bottom of the shower curtain to make it an extra tall version.  Well, I finally got around to doing it – right after I made my lovely ruffle curtains. I used the two extra yards {$8 total on sale with a coupon} to add 15 inches to the bottom of the curtain, plus three dainty ruffles using the exact same method I used for the window curtains {detailed here.} Then we raised the bar to just a few inches from the ceiling to give it a hotel-ish feel.  


{Oh, and don’t mind the hole in the ceiling, we need to get a new ceiling fan/light.}

Instead of spending $20 plus shipping for an extra long curtain liner online, Eugene brought home two Dollar Tree cheap-o liners and I simply stitched ‘em together. And believe it or not, it worked, and it really didn’t look stupid!


I know I’ve explained before that the “z” shape of our bathroom makes it virtually impossible to photograph, so here’s a whole bunch of partial pictures of the revamped shower curtain that matches the new DIY curtains.




I like how the ruffles tie the two curtains together, plus since our bedspread has similar shabby ruffles, it all seems cohesive.


So what do ya think? Are ya feeling the ruffles?


Linked to:

The Shabby Nest   Dittle Dattle The DIY Show Off IhookedupwithHoHlamespice

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