Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Links I Love Plus an Update and Prayer Request

I've been struggling for over a month with  carpal tunnel-like symptoms. Needless to say that makes it difficult to write, work as a virtual assistant, and do just about everything that requires your dominant hand. I see a specialist soon but I'd love your prayers.

As I try to get back into the swing of things I'd thought I share some personal and miscellaneous things that are on my mind:

Words for Transition and Change:
  • I'm on the cusp of some major life change (more on that later) so Shelly Miller's words here on cooking through her own season of waiting are perfect for this me right now and maybe you too?

Things You Didn't Know About Florida Girls:
  •  Recently I went on vacation to Door County, Wisconsin. And it was cold and it SNOWED!!! Because I'm always dreaming of colder weather it made our trip perfect.

All the Happy Places:
  •  My friend, Renia, at The Development of Taste has started her annual Savor the Holidays series. And lets be honest, we all need to read/do this. Plus she includes some really practical tips and recipes. Follow along here
  • Grace Table recently launched and they are my people! Grace Table "is a place to talk about the intersection of food and faith and how the practice of hospitality is less about what you serve and more about that you serve. GraceTable is a space where there are always enough seats, always enough food, and always grace. 

What I'm Cooking:
  • Every Fall Lindesy's recipe for Beef Bourguign is on my list. Hoping to make (and eat) it this week.

For 2015:
  • I'm contemplating my word of the year for next year. "Hope" has really made an impact in my life this year and I can't imagine not having a word of the year every year.

Good Reads:
  • I just finished Boo Mama's A Little Salty to Cut the Sweet and ya'll, you have to read this book. It's laugh out loud hilarious and heart warming at the same time. Plus at the back there are recipes that will make you start saying "ya'll."
  • What are you reading? I'm into memoirs and fiction right now but am open to all your recommendations in the comments below.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

For When You Don't Want to Miss Jesus this Holiday Season

It was December of 2008 and it had been a year like no other. The catalysing moment of the year being loosing my first husband and becoming a widow at age 24.

I was on a random trip to the Christian book store when a small collection of devotionals caught my eye. I didn't have much energy for deep Bible study in that season and I was nearing the completion of a degree that included classes in homiletics, hermeneutics, and the like. But I was certain I needed to be close to Jesus that Christmas in a way I never had before. So I bought that little devotional and thus began my journey into celebrating Advent, a tradition that has shaped my holiday season ever since. 

Even in the most difficult or overwhelming Christmas seasons practicing Advent has brought respite, even if only for a few minutes, each day of December. Every year I fear missing Jesus and every year I cling to Him through the hand of Advent.

Maybe upon reading the title of this post you dreaded thinking about the holiday season so early in November. But if you really want to hold onto Jesus this year the most important thing you can do is prepare your heart now.

Get your copy here
One way I'm preparing my heart is through Ann Voskamp's Unwrapping the Greatest Gift. This family celebration of Christmas is the perfect Advent resource for all ages and seasons of life. While the lovely full color illustrations and story format will hold children's attention the beautiful language and theological depth will go straight to the heart of any adult.

This exquisite hardcover book is heirloom quality and perfect for your coffee table. It will be a beautiful daily reminder this Christmas season of the love that came down for us. To set us free. To give us grace. And to offer a holiday that is about more than us. A holiday that is about an eternal gift to all of mankind.

Tyndale House Publishers provided me with a complimentary copy of Unwrapping the Greatest gift but all opinions expressed here are my own.