Are You Overwhelmed By Life?

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(photo by: http://BibleLockScreen.com/download)

 

I don’t know about you, but life seems to become more difficult to navigate just when I think that I should have it all together!

Finishing school, getting married, having kids, buying a house – those are all things I planned on and expected to have in my life…deaths in the family, losing half of our income & our home, dealing with health issues on an ongoing basis, struggling with depression, doubting God – those were all unplanned and unexpected events in my life.

I arrived at a point where I had never been before: distrusting God’s hand in my life.

Wondering, “Am I being punished for choices I have made or have I just been too naive to realize that this is real life?”

I’ve always been one to try to see the positive in everything.  “God’s in control…He’s got a plan…He won’t give you any more than you can handle.”  I believed those things to be true but had never been truly tested to the point that I might question them…Wow, was I in for a rude awakening.  I thought my faith was rock-solid and then I began to see where my foundation was cracking under the pressure of it all.

I thought that I was doing so good, clinging to God through all of the tough times, going to church and women’s bible studies, spending time in prayer.  Where did the disconnect happen?  I’m still working on figuring it out…although it’s tough to sit and sift through those rough days of disappointment and sadness.  Could it be that I had this notion that if I made good choices, trusted God with my life and family and did my best to honor Him that I would have a smooth life?  Not that it would always be easy, but surely nothing more than I could handle?

For a time I think I subconsciously decided that I was better off taking my life into my own hands since God didn’t seem to care anymore.  At least that’s how I felt.  Have you ever felt like you stopped hearing from God?  I did.  It was like he was letting me figure it all out on my own.  Like He had walked away for a while…

At that time I stopped doing all those things that I had done for years: reading my Bible, listening to Christian music, journaling…it was just too hard to believe and trust in what I was reading and listening to.  They were just words.  It kills me to say that, but that’s how I felt.  I had allowed a wall to go up, which at the time I thought was to protect my heart from any more hurt…it turns out that wall kept my heart from connecting to God’s heart and from receiving true peace and joy from Him.

I’m still in the process of allowing God complete control over my life. It’s not easy to break down that wall of disappointment , anger and fear and to rebuild my trust in God as my ultimate provider and source of strength, peace and joy.  But I am so thankful for his unwavering love for me.  He relentlessly pursues me and beckons me  back into a trusting relationship with Him.

This morning I read a devotional by Lysa TerKeurst  entitled: “Will You Share Your Story?”  The verse she shared was from Genesis 50:20: “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.”

Lysa talks about the fact that life is impossible to do on our own strength.

“God met every one of my arguments with scriptures about relying not on my own strength, but on His….”

“He untangled my need for approval with the challenge to live for an audience of One.  He helped me to see where the voices of doubt were coming from and challenged me to consider the source.  And, quite simply, He loved me over and over again.”

I LOVE that last line…

I know now that God was there during all of my difficulties, fear and anger. He heard my cries for help.  I don’t understand why He allowed it all but I can see some of the bigger picture now…and I will choose each day to listen for His voice.

How I Organize My Crafting Space!

Hello!  I decided to pull a past post out of the archives (2010) to share with you this week!

Since I’ve been sharing a lot about how I organize my crafting supplies, I thought it was a good time to share how I organize my crafting spaces!

 


Since moving into our home in April (and losing my guest room/craft area!)

I now have my crafting armoire in my Master Bedroom.

I also store all of my extra craft supplies and my inventory of handmade &

store bought gifts in my Master closet so everything is centrally located.

My crafting armoire is on the wall next to our slider so I can see/hear the sights

and sounds of the pool & backyard while I’m creating :’)

Here’s a few photos:


My Craft Armoire!


More crowded than I’d like, but I’m happy that it all has a home!


Love my OTT-LITE!

The black tower on the right is actually a SIZZIX organizer that I use for my paper pads & paint chips.


Love this organizer-caddy thingy!


Bins of paper scraps that are leftover from other projects…


One of my ribbon organizers – I believe it’s called a “Ribbon Ring” but I can’t remember…



This beauty is great for taking supplies from place to place!



And here’s where I hide all of my totes and my Cricut – nicely hidden by my curtains :’)



Here’s a few of my “dream” crafting spaces:

Here is what to do:

If you want to link up a Crafting Spaces post, simply click on the title of your post at your own blog,

copy the link that is in the address bar, paste it in the link space below

(following the instructions as needed).

Then in the body of your post on your blog, link back to this party

so your friends and readers can find the party too!

When you’re all done linking up, click to visit as many links as you can!!

Have fun!

Thumbnails: This is a Blog Hop! 21 entries so far… you’re next!


Organized Crafts

My Crafting Space

Craft Room

Kid’s Craft Space

Chica’s craft room

Jo’s craft room

Curtains to Pillows

Craft Room Tour

Organizing toys

Maillardville Manor

Jenna Lou Designs

My Craft Dungeon

Creative Spaces

My Creative Space

My Creative Space

Craft Room revamped

Sarah’s Craft Room

unveiled last year

vintage inspired stu

My Scrappy Room

My Scrappy Room

My studio vignettes

Craftroom Workshop

Craftroom Workshop

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Get the code here…

Do You Ever Feel Stuck?

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Do you ever feel stuck?

 Like you just cant seem to get back to “normal”

no matter how hard you try?

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I’ve been feeling stuck in a sickness rut for about two months now and I’m so over it!

My Dr. told me today that within a few days of taking my third round of meds

I should be feeling as good as new…Ummm, that’s what you said at my first visit!

Well, I can hardly blame her that my out-of-control asthma & bronchitis

led to pneumonia, which led to me feeling icky since Christmas

and that my lungs need one more round of steroids to completely clear up…

I’m crossing my fingers & earnestly praying that my Dr is right!!

med68 clip are

 

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During this downtime, God has sent some much-needed encouragement via

some ladies whose blogs I read daily.

They each have different writing styles but God uses their words to touch me and

to encourage me to keep pressing on…

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The first blog is by Ann Voskamp ~ A Holy Experience

Ann is a homeschooling Mom who lives on a farm in Canada…

She has a best-selling book One Thousand Gifts

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Yesterday Ann’s post was:

When You’re Ready for More than Hardly Surviving Your Life

The title got my attention right away!

I love how real and honest her writing is:

“Malakai wore his suede shoes through the snow this afternoon and they puddle this sad, soggy mess of ruin in the mudroom.

Three packages have been sitting in the mud room for two weeks waiting for just one person to finally make the 4 mile pilgrimage to the post office.

There were no clean underwear in the top drawer on Friday morning and tell me, what do you do there, just standing in your flimsy towel?

What saves you all the time from going a little bit insane?”

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I giggle when I read her words, but I also want to nod my head & cry out -

“Yes!  I am not the only one who feels like I need to be put in the nut house

almost every day!”

You can read the entire blog post here to find out how we can

go from desperately seeking someone or something to save us from our messes…

to counting the gifts that God has given us & quenching the never-ending thirst…

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The second blog is by Emily Freeman ~ Chatting at the Sky

Her most recent post: Searching For What We Know For Sure: An Introduction 

was quite thought provoking for me…

She says: “I’m in a season now where I’m taking the things I thought I knew for sure and holding them up in my hands, walking around with them, asking questions of them and sometimes, setting them down on the table and asking God if I need to go ahead and leave them behind.”

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Hmmm, I think that sound like a good thing to do, especially at the beginning of a new year, when you’re setting goals and contemplating the year(s) ahead…

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Are you feeling “stuck”?

If so, I hope you’ll take some encouragement from the ladies above as I have…

 

I’ve Been Busy Creating!

The past few weeks I’ve been busy scouring magazines & websites…

Trying to get my creative juices flowing!

Pinterest has been a great resource to help keep my ideas organized…

But I also find that I still need pen & paper…

Here’s a look at a few of the projects I’m working on…

I feel like I’ve had a lot of failed ideas along the way,

and it hasn’t been easy to see the ideas in my head

turn out like I thought they would…

But I think I’m on the right track!

Now if I just had some more time to play with all of this fun stuff!

Stay tuned…

Three Years Ago…

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Three years ago I decided, upon the advice of friends & family, to sell some of my

handmade journals & recipe boxes on ETSY…it was a lot of fun!

But then I decided to start volunteering (lots of hours!) with our soccer league

and I went from homeschooling two of my kiddos to all three!!

 So, my crafting time became seriously limited and I had to give up my little handmade biz.

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….Now, three years later, I have stopped volunteering for awhile

and although I am still homeschooling three kiddos,

they are more independent at this point in their schooling and I can carve out some time for ME!

We are also preparing to send our oldest off to college next year (crazy!!!)

and my youngest would really like to attend a local private school next fall…

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So, I am going to re-vive my handmade business

and hope to have a lot of fun and success with it!

I am currently in the process of planning & organizing ~ going through lots of blog posts

and scouring for ideas to get me off on the right foot!

Maggie Whitley of Gussy Sews has some great posts

that have been really encouraging and insightful.

She also makes beautiful handmade bags so check her out!

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Stay tuned!  I’m busily working out all of the details!

Pinterest Friday ~ My Top 10 for May 12th, 2012

Hello and welcome back to Pinterest Friday…

Happy early Mother’s Day to all you Moms!

If you missed last week’s post, you can find it here

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1. “I’ll Love You Forever” Photo Gift

from an ETSY shop ~ Sugaredplums

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2. Photo of Birthday Child with a List of Accomplishments

by The Jobling Family

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3. Use Wax Paper to Keep Water Spots Away!  Genius!

by In This Crazy Life

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4. Adorable Dress

at Sweet Innocence Dress Collection

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5. Chalkboard Labels on Ceramic Pots – Mom’s Day gift idea!

at Better Homes & Garden

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6. 31 Days of DIY ~ Adding Character to Your Home ~ Lots of Great Tips!

by The Yellow Cape Cod

::   ::   ::

7. How to Conquer Your Car Clutter – very clever!

at I Heart Organizing

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8. Big List of Freezable Foods – very helpful!

at Simple Organized Living

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9. Fruit Pizza Bar – I am so doing this for a party this summer!

by Joy is at Home

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10. Creative, Inexpensive Table Decorations

by Better Homes & Garden

::   ::   ::

Hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s Top 10!

Hope to see you back here next Friday :’)

Pinterest Tuesday!! My Top Ten for May 8th, 2012

Hello and welcome back to Pinterest Friday Tuesday!

Last week just got away from me,

so this week I’m changing it up!

This week I will be sharing ~ all things Mother’s Day!!!

If you missed my last Pinterest post, you can find it here

::   ::   ::

1. 75 Things To Make for Mother’s Day by Tip Junkie

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2. Photo Tile Coasters by Oopsey Daisy

::   ::   ::

3. Hosting your Mother-in-Law for Mother’s Day??

Here’s an Appliance Quick Clean Checklist by Clean Mama

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4. Cute Outfit for Your Special Day by Cynthia335 on Polyvore

::   ::   ::

5. Spruce up Your Yard with a Faux Finish Flower Pot

by DIY Home Staging Tips

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6.  Monogrammed iPhone Case for Mom by Joss & Main

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7. Can’t Afford to Get a Salon Manicure? DIY Glitter Nails!

by The Small Things Blog

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8. Beautiful & Easy Centerpiece by Meggielynne on Tumblr

::   ::   ::

9. Make this Crockpot BBQ Chicken so You Don’t Spend Mother’s Day in the Kitchen!

by Stick a Fork in It

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10.  The Pioneer Woman Cookbook ~ what this Mom wants for Mother’s Day!

::   ::   ::

Hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s Top 10!

Hope to see you back here next Friday :’)

Pinterest Friday! My Top Ten Picks for April 27th, 2012

Hello and welcome back to Pinterest Friday!

I can’t believe it’s Friday again already…

And April is coming to a close…where did it go??

Mother’s Day is a little over two weeks away…

Lots of great handmade gift ideas are popping up on Pinterest

so I will be sharing them over the next few Fridays!

If you missed last week’s post, you can find it here

::   ::   ::

1. Use a Colander & some fresh flowers to make your own Mother’s Day Bouquet!

at B-Movie Star

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2. Make Mom a Photo Collage on Picasa

by Skip To My Lou

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3. Hosting a Mother’s Day Get-Together?

Want your Home to Smell like a William’s Sonoma Store?

Try this Lemon, Rosemary & Vanilla Home Deodorizer

by One More Moore

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4. Need a new outfit for your special day??

I’ve pinned some great ideas on my Spring/Summer Board!

by Deb’s Heart and Home ~ Spring/Summer Fashion

::   ::   ::

5. Yes, Please! Frozen Samoan Cake for Mother’s Day Dessert!

by My Favorite Things

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6. Need some Gift Ideas?  Here’s 50 for under $10 a piece!

by Saved by Love Creations

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7. Buying Mom a Necklace? Use this Helpful Guide…

by Suetables, Silver with Character

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8. For the Mom with Piles & Piles of Laundry! Free Laundry Printable…

by Three Little Monkeys Studio

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9. Yummy Croque Monsieur for Mother’s Day Brunch

(Croissant’s for those of you who are not French!)

by Savury & Sweet

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10. Simple, Elegant Tablescape for a Mother’s Day Celebration

by Style Me Pretty

::   ::   ::

Hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s Top 10!

Hope to see you back here next Friday :’)

:: :: ::

I’m linking up to these link parties:
HookingupwithHoHWeekend Bloggy ReadingA Little Inspiration

Pinterest Friday ~ My Top 10 for 4-13-12!

Hello and welcome back to Pinterest Friday!

Since many of us are enjoying beautiful Spring weather,

I thought that I would devote this week’s Pinterest Friday

To all things Spring!

Enjoy!

If you missed last week’s post, you can find it here

::   ::   ::

1. Beautiful Spring Flower Arrangements by B-Movie Star

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2. Spring-Colored Gussy Wristlet by Neathering our Fest

::   ::   ::

3. Spring Cleaning Checklist by Blissfully Ever After

::   ::   ::

4. Spring-y Green Dress by Unique Image at Polyvore

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5. Spring Table by Dying of Cute on Tumblr

::   ::   ::

6. Coconut Oil as a Skin Moisturizer by How Does She?

To make your Winter skin Spring-y smooth!

::   ::   ::

7. Pantone’s Top Paint Colors for Spring by the Perfect Palette

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8. Spring into Organization Blogger Home Tours ~ so many great ideas!

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9. Smoothie Boosters – to fight off those Spring colds!

(found on Pinterest via Tumblr)

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10. Vintage Baseball Party by Amy Harrison Photography

For those Springtime birthdays!

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Hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s Top 10!

Hope to see you back here next Friday :’)

HouseofHepworths Weekend Bloggy Reading