I came across this photo today (kellehampton.com, go check her blog out) and instantly saw myself at five or six years old again. Swap out the blond hair and blue eyes for brown on brown, add a little (okay, a lot) more baby fat, and this little girl is me. In my bedroom, sunlight streaming in the big picture window, laying on my pink quilt, surrounded by books, still in my dance outfit, with dirty feet.
I was so happy. Content. Loved. I would lay on my bed for hours like that, reading, dreaming. Totally unaware of all the sad, scary, and hard things the world has to offer. At that point, all I was concerned about was what mom was making for dinner, if Shawn and Andy would let me play night games with them this time, and deciding if pink or yellow was my favorite color. It brought back such sweet and simple memories.
One of my favorite websites is (in)courage. It's a collaborative blog of Christian women that puts out multiple posts a day to help women connect with each other and draw them closer to Jesus. Every day I am encouraged and challenged by the women who share their hearts on this website. It is also much more then just a blog. They offer and online book club, which I am currently participating in, as well as an online store, DaySpring, which offers a wide variety of products from cards, to dishes, to home decor.
With as much as I love this site and admire the women who write there, I was so excited to get the chance to review some DaySpring products for you, and also offer a 20$ gift card to the store for one lucky reader!
The theme for this month over at (in)courage is "Life to the full", based off of John 10:10.
"I have come that you may have life, and have it to the full."
Jesus brings life. And not only life, but the best life, a full life, an overflowing life.
DaySpring sent me a set of four fun plates that revolve around the John verse of Jesus bringing us a full life. I love the plates, each on their own, but especially as a set. I wouldn't use them for every day use, but they are great for entertaining, or even just for display in your home. Bright colors, fun shapes, and a unique reminder of the joy God brings into our life if we allow Him.
The set includes the largest plate, with a floral design, and the John 10:10 verse with "life" in various languages:
The red plate with black floral design, John 10:10 on the rim:
The black plate with floral design, and "life" in multiple languages:
And the smallest plate, simply with "life" written in script:
I love them all! The very day I got them in the mail I used the largest plate to serve my homemade Carmel Delight knock-offs to our small group. I have left them out sitting on my yellow cabinet as a unique way to add some color to our living room.
And the most exciting part: you can score some DaySpring goods of your own! Just leave me a comment on this post by Saturday, 3/19, and I will chose one random winner to receive a $20 coupon code for DaySpring!
I am getting so anxious for the summer months and warmer weather. Here is what I am day dreaming about today at work, while it is still 38 degrees outside and snow on the ground:
-having all the windows open, falling asleep to outside noises
-concerts on the square
-the beer garden being open again
-eating dinner (from the grill) on our balcony
-going for walks after dinner
-not wearing 12,000 layers to run outside
-the 4th of July in Neenah
-riding my bike
-seeing U2 in July
-driving with the windows down
-flip flops and skirts without tights underneath
-going to the terrace
-no more snow
-the Tour de Bago
-corn on the cob
-going to the farmer's market
-kids playing outside
-green grass and leaves on trees
-running through the point in Neenah
-hiking at Devil's Lake
-fresh homegrown tomatoes
-birds singing in the morning
-the sun gets up early and goes to bed late
I was thinking this morning about how my faith has grown through out the years. Gained wisdom and life experiences have changed my view of God, for the better. The more I try to know and understand about God, the larger and more complicated He becomes. God isn't changing, but my view of Him does.
My thoughts took me to a passage that I remember from Prince Caspian by C.S. Lewis where Lucy sees Aslan after a long time apart and exclaims,
“Aslan! You’re bigger.” “That is because you are older, little one, ” answered he. “Not because you are?” “I am not. But every year you grow you will find me bigger.”
It is so cool that God meets us where we are at on our journey. When we have faith like a child, He meets us in the appropriate way. As long as we are pursuing growth, our faith can never become old and stale. God will always become larger, there will always be a new facet to explore and discover.
B. Bed size: Queen, an abnormally high in height queen. Late night trips to the bathroom are particularly hazardous, especially when you are under 5'4''.
C. Chore you dislike: Taking out the garbage. But I am blessed by an expert garbage man of a husband.
D. Dogs: Only imaginary :o) Mike and I both desperately want a mangy mutt or a huge St. Bernard named Mom, but Mike is allergic.
E. Essential start to your day: Sweat. I love working out in the morning, enough to wake up at 5AM in order to fit it in. There is nothing better then watching the sun rise while finishing a run.
F. Favorite color: Yellow.
G. Gold or silver: Silver, except for my mom's gold wedding band and gold monogram necklace.
H. Height: 5'4", which is tall compared to the women in my family. My grandma didn't pass five feet!
I. Instruments you play(ed): I took piano lessons for 12-13 years. And then there was the painful stint as a cymbal player in my high school marching band...
J. Job title: Sarah Hughes, RN, Clinical Nurse Specialist (ha!)
K. Kids: None... but Mike and I pray and hope for a house full someday!
L. Live: Madison, WI. I love living in Madison. So much. Good restraunts, live music, family friendly, awesome running and biking trails, college town.
M. Mom’s name: Ann. Her full name was Ann Louise Adelmann/Dobbins, and her nickname was Wheeze, or Wheezie, as my grandpa would call her.
N. Nicknames: In high school I was known as Dobbins, or just Dobbs, which I think was just passed down from my two older brothers. Mike has quite the rotating list of nicknames, ranging from Little One, to Pumpkin Head. I know, I am a lucky girl.
O. Overnight hospital stays: None. Knock on wood.
P. Pet peeves: Sniffling. There is nothing worse then sitting in a quiet room with someone who won't just blow their nose and keeps sniffling. Kleenex was made for a reason, people. Also, how impossible it is to keep our black stove top clean. No matter what, there are always crumbs on it.
Q. Quote from a movie: "No! No. You may only call me Mrs. Darcy when you are completely, perfectly, and incandescently happy." -Pride and Prejudice
R. Righty or lefty: Righty
S. Siblings: Andy and Shawn, both older! As much as I have always longed for a sister, I feel incredibly blessed to have such awesome older brothers.
T. Time you wake up: 5AM during the week. On the weekends I can sleep as late at 10, but I have a strange quirk. I always wake up hungry, usually by 6:30, so I will eat breakfast, then go back to bed and sleep the morning away.
U. Underwear: I'm in favor of it.
V. Vegetables you don't like: Eggplant and canned green beans.
W. What makes you run late: Emptying the dishwasher before going into work, trying to find my other mitten in the mess that is our winter basket, deciding what to wear. And it seems like, no matter how much extra time we plan into our morning, Mike and I are always at least a few minutes late to church. I don't know the last time we were there before the music started. Something always stands in our way, despite our best intentions to be early church goers.
X. X-rays you’ve had: Teeth?
Y. Yummy food you make: Soup and chili. Curry and stir fry. Veggie lasagna. Cookies.