A Little Friday Music

Yesterday I made my weekly drive from Nashville to Birmingham (though Josh would rightfully argue it hasn’t been weekly as of late). On the way down one of Needtobreathe’s new songs came on the Pulse (thank you Sirius XM!).  It reminded me that I had been meaning to download their latest cd (do you still call it a cd when you don’t have the physical cd??).  So I did just that and have been jamming to them ever since.  Josh even jammed with me while we did a little cleaning last night.

I am really liking ‘Multiplied’ and it just so happens that they released their official video for the song TODAY! I’ve put that video and the lyrics below.

Your love is like radiant diamonds
Bursting inside us we cannot contain
Your love will surely come find us
Like blazing wild fires singing Your name

God of mercy sweet love of mine
I have surrendered to Your design
May this offering stretch across the skies
And these Hallelujahs be multiplied

This song is such a great reminder of how awesome God’s love, a beautiful vision of worship, and a reminder to surrender to His plans for my life. It reminds me of an alternative version of a praise song, with the 2 stanzas repeating throughout the song, really letting the words and the message sink in.

Like their folksy, southern rock, Christian vibe? You can go to their website to hear more, follow them on Instagram, follow them on Twitter, or just download their sweet beats.

twenty-nine + feeling fine

Twenty nine…teetering on the edge of 30 but still feeling a bit of that mid-20s spirit.  People often have a “30 before 30 bucket list” of things they want to accomplish, places they want to go, and things they want to do before turning 30. While I believe that life is in fact fleeting and every day should be lived to the fullest, I’m not going to outline the 30 things I want to do before I am 30.  Honestly, the thought of creating that list and trying to get all of those things accomplished stresses me out and causes  a bit of anxiety to rise in my chest. Instead of tackling a mountain of to-dos this year, I simply want to be.

I want to be present when I am with family and friends – not distracted by technology or things that aren’t pressing needs. I want to be joyful and find the happiness of life and really dwell in those moments. I want to be dedicated to all of those things that have importance in my life – whether that’s my faith, my family + friends, work, writing, exercising, or creating. I want to simply give the people I love and the activities I love dedicated time and space in my life.

I want to fully live life, taking advantage of the opportunities I am given without worrying about what I haven’t done, haven’t accomplished, or where I haven’t been.  This worry of the “have nots” really means I’m comparing my life to those who’ve done life differently. Instead, I want to focus on what I have done, have accomplished, and where I have been.  As I inch towards 30, I want to fully embrace where I am, what I’ve been given (which is an abundant amount!), and who I am becoming.

Here’s to putting worry, comparison, distraction on the shelf and embracing the joys of this life I’ve created.

 

Thankful Thursday

Time to pick up where I left off about a year ago. I started reading Ann Voskamp’s book One Thousand Gifts more than a year and a half ago and was instantly motivated to start my own list of thanks. Like a lot of things in life – this list slowly dwindled from my radar and I stopped recording my thanksgivings.  I don’t know exactly why – other than I had stopped writing much of anything over the last year. It was a year full of work and school…and trying to fit in time with Josh, family, and friends when those 2 things weren’t consuming my life.  Now that school is over, I have a renewed desire to write and record my thoughts, memories, and thanksgivings.

So here I am, revived to pick up my list again.

Last year I ended with these 4 things:

24. More daylight, which means more time outside – more grilling out, more time in the yard, more hiking, more country drives with the windows down and sunroof open

25. Warm mornings. Joshua and I have a renewed desire to wake up earlier and get our day going now that the sun is rising earlier

26. A husband who holds me accountable to my personal goals. This morning Joshua kicked me out of bed for my desired morning run. I really would have loved to lay there and cuddle longer, but with the evenings staying so warm, I know I’ll have better runs if I get up and go in the morning

27. This morning’s run. So thankful I didn’t miss the beauty God has created for us to enjoy by staying in bed this morning. A country road in the morning light provides such serenity and joy

Today, I find myself thankful for:

28. Free time in the evenings to do things I enjoy – no longer dedicated to school!

29. Challenging projects at work that are allowing me to grow

30. My cell phone. As silly as this may seem, when your are managing a long distance marriage – the pieces of technology that keep you connected become important.  Thankful for our time on the phone every morning and evening

31. Renewed dedication to running – I’ve really missed my time outside with my feet hitting the pavement. Running always brings me joy

32. She Reads Truth - a great community of Christian women studying God’s word together and pursuing a life dedicated to His glory.

What are you thankful for today?

Rainy Friday

I don’t know what it looks like in your neck of the woods – but it looks a little something like this out of my window

rain

Doesn’t that just make you want to curl up with a good book under a pile of blankets? or have a movie marathon? Yeah, me too! Thankfully it is Friday, which means a weekend filled with time to relax and rest…and also lots of time to get some projects completed around the house.

This weekend’s list includes:

  1. Hanging the guest bathroom shower curtain
  2. Mowing the lawn.  We were gifted an awesome Toro Mower that folds up to create a smaller footprint in the garage! We’re looking forward to using it for the first time this weekend (as long as the rain slows)
  3. Unpacking more boxes upstairs
  4. Moving seasonal boxes to the attic
  5. Laundry and normal cleaning

I’m also looking forward to exploring our new city some more.  The Farmers Market is calling my name..I’ve identified 2 potential spots, but would love some greater Birmingham suggestions!

Finally, during my devotional time this morning this song came on Pandora – and I can’t get it out of my head.

Well, hello!

It’s been almost a year since I last updated the blog…A YEAR! We got into a really good groove this year and I think that has been a big pull to blog less (ahem – not at all) and soak in the memories we are making. I have enjoyed being present and just living life rather than thinking of life through the lens of the blog.  I’ve seen this trend across the web – with bloggers taking a break to focus on life and loved ones.  It’s kind of nice to see a shift away from being constantly connected.

Our year has been so full  of wonderful memories, including surprise engagements for some of our close friends, an amazing beach weekend with some of my favorite gals, a few fantastic weddings, birthdays, a new job for Josh, new job responsibilities for me, and possibly our biggest life change – buying a house and moving to Alabama. Oh…and I’ve been finishing my Master’s degree with graduation THIS SATURDAY!!!

Here are a few snapshots of the fun we’ve had over the past year.

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I always tend to find my way back to the space when we are in the middle of big changes.  With a big chapter closing behind us…and a new one just beginning, I expect to find myself writing here a lot more.  Be sure to check back!

I Run for…

peace of mind, that “runner’s high”, my love for the outdoors, fitness…the list goes on and on.

Today is national running day and I fully intend to hit the pavement after work today to get in a few miles.  I also thought I would share a little bit of my running story.

It all started in elementary school, when I would race all the boys at recess.  Yes, I was that girl who would challenge the boys to race…and usually beat them all.  I was also that girl that hit her growth spurt early, so I had a little bit of a leg length advantage. So, you could say I have always loved to run.

In middle school I ran cross country and track, but always enjoyed being out on the cross country course or running though neighborhoods for practice rather than on the track.  The track stressed me out.

In high school I ran track during my freshman and sophomore years.  I would always run the starting leg or anchor leg of the 4 x 800.  I also ran the open 400 and occasionally ran the 4 x 400.  I was definitely a middle distance track runner.  My sophomore year I joined the cross country team and remained on the team through my Senior year.  Again I say, there was just something about being on the trails or running in the neighborhoods around our high school.

During college my running pretty much took a back seat..that was until my friend Hawley and I decided to train for a half marathon.  We would hit the sidewalks of Athens or go to the botanical garden and run the trails…it was so much fun and a great way to form a friendship.  Unfortunately, I injured myself (stress fracture in the hip) just before the half and had to cheer Hawley on from the sidelines.  She did amazing and I was so proud of her..and so thankful we were able to bond through our training.

Post college, running has been a semi-constant in my life.  I don’t run every day..and I definitely have periods of time that I don’t run at all.  However, I always find that I am happier with life if I am running a few times a week.  I don’t necessarily have a goal I am aiming towards, I just get out there for my health and well being.  I’ll do a fun run 5k here and there, but nothing competitive.  Sure, I would love to run a half marathon some day…and heck, maybe even a full…but right now I am satisfied for running for me, for my health, for my happiness, for my peace of mind, and so much more.

Some pictures from the past year of running:

Image

Franklin Classic 5K with Mom

Trail running - challenging but beautiful.

Trail running – challenging but beautiful.

My running shoes when they were brand new - they look nothing like this anymore.  In fact, it's probably time for a new pair.

My running shoes when they were brand new – they look nothing like this anymore. In fact, it’s probably time for a new pair.

Before and After: Bridge to Bridge 4 miler.  1 bridge per mile, love this tradition with mom!

Before and After: Bridge to Bridge 4 miler. 1 bridge per mile, love this tradition with mom!

Morning run down my street.  Country running is the best!

Morning run down my street. Country running is the best!

Edwin Warner Park - where I ran cross country meets in middle and high school.

Edwin Warner Park – where I ran cross country meets in middle and high school.

Thankful Thursdays

It has been a really long times since I’ve done a Thankful Thursday post and I think it’s about time to revive them!

Summer is season that makes me just absolutely joyful.  The days are longer (at least daylight LASTS longer) which provides time to enjoy more things outside.  The weather took a while to decide if it really wanted to give us that summer heat..but I think it’s finally hear to stay.  Looking forward to lots of time out in that glorious summer heat!  Some things I am thankful for about summer time:

24. More daylight, which means more time outside – more grilling out, more time in the yard, more hiking, more country drives with the windows down and sunroof open

25. Warm mornings.  Joshua and I have a renewed desire to wake up earlier and get our day going now that the sun is rising earlier.

26.  A husband who holds me accountable to my personal goals.  This morning Joshua kicked me out of bed for my desired morning run.  I really would have loved to lay there and cuddle longer, but with the evenings staying so warm, I know I’ll have better runs if I get up and go in the morning.

27.  This morning’s run.  So thankful I didn’t miss the beauty God has created for us to enjoy by staying in bed this morning.  A country road in the morning light provides such serenity and joy.

morning run

What are you thankful for this week?