Friday, May 28, 2010

Storms of Life

"The difference between school and life?  In school, you're taught a lesson and then given a test. 
In life, you're given a test that teaches you a lesson." 
Tom Bodett

As we live life and travel the road with ups and downs, it becomes apparent that we can learn a lot through these situations, if our focus is not on the difficulties, but on God.  Oswald Chambers said, "We have to pray with our eyes on God, not on the difficulties."  Our perspective when we go through rough times allows us to either learn in the situation and become better for having gone through it or we become more inclusive to ourselves with bitterness and anger over the situation.  When this happens it's hard for God or anyone else to reach us.

Of course, we must realize that problems & difficulties in life are not punishment from God, but just part of life.  The only perfect place besides Heaven was the Garden of Eden and we sure messed it up.  So, with that big mistake of a lifetime comes wrong/sin, death, illness and all the bad in the world.  Understanding this helps us to answer questions like...Why is this happening to me?  

Many people say that life is like are either headed for a storm, in a storm or coming out of a storm.  What you allow yourself to become through these storms is up to you.  God is constantly working in our lives and even in the darkest times, we can see the small joys that He brings our way.  He may seem late at times when you want things to hurry up, but the truth is He's not late because He never went anywhere.  He never left you. 

Wherever you find your life right now, remember the opportunity to learn through these storms.  Just as it's so beautiful when the sun begins to shine brightly through the storm clouds and you know it's almost over, hold on through the difficulty and look to God in the horizon and watch for the clouds to move aside as the sun begins to shine.  You will appreciate the sunny days so much more.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Fantabulous Cricut - #11 Challenge Me Monday

Create a project using at least 3 flowers on your project
and at least one Cricut cut image.

I won a blank reversible wooden door hanger at my favorite
scrapbook store, The Scrapyard on National Scrapbooking Day
and created this fun door hanger for my scrap room/office.


Lyrical Letters

First Signs of Summer

Missouri Evening Primrose

Fluffy Clouds in a Blue Sky

The Promise of a Beautiful Rose

Raindrops on the Flowers

Golden Delicious Apples Beginning to Grow

Lime Green Tipped Petunias...A Show Stopper

Ripe Blackberries Coming Soon

Beauty in the Shade

Thanks for Visiting the First Signs of Summer in my Backyard.
Enjoy the Beauty God Has Given Us!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Everyone Has a Story

"Remember that everyone you meet is afraid of something,
loves something and has lost something." 
H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

When you see people, some show a lot of personality traits that lend itself to you forming opinions on them.  Seeing past what someone says and how they act allows us to see them as a person.  Remembering simple facts that effects us all changes how we view others.  

Everyone is afraid of something, even if they do not realize it.  Fear of seeing others hurting, losses we can face, children seriously ill or being alone is just a few things that can cause us to be afraid.

Each of us love something or someone and with this love of life, people and abilities comes the vulnerability to be hurt when these things are no more.  If you've loved, then you've also lost.  Remembering these facts help us to see that all of us are really not so different and we all have the basic needs to love, be loved and find and accomplish our purpose. 

The next time someone shows their personality good and proper and you have the option to form an opinion, remember to look past their words and actions.  See the things they may be afraid of and what they have loved and lost.  Ask God to help you see others the way He sees them.  We are deeply loved in spite of our words and actions.  We were created with the purpose of loving God and sharing that love with all that we meet.  It's so simple...yet so very hard to live.  Remember to be patient with others along the journey, because they are trying to learn this also.

Fantabulous Cricut Scrappin' Saturday Challenge - make your own lace cardstock

Using the Storybook cartridge, I used the fit to page option
on #7 Shift, Accent/Frame.

I love to use everything, especially my scraps, so I chose to use the left over pieces from the underside of the frame on the second page and it works great!  This challenge was so much fun!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Cricut Cardz Challenge # 25 - make a card with a bird or a butterfly using any cartridges, colors or theme you'd like.

A whimsical butterfly card using Home Accents cartridge.

Inside sentiment using Lyrical Letters cartridge.

Thought for the Day

"I know God will not give me anything I can't handle. 
I just wish He didn't trust me so much." 
Mother Teresa

It's such a cute quote and we often feel the way Mother Teresa did.  It's been said that each day is a gift from God and what we do with it is our gift to Him.  Our challenge becomes not just surviving from day to day, but to cherish each day and focus on how we can help, love and give to others, showing them the love of God.  This is giving our lives as a gift to God.  It is a gift of service and self sacrifice...even in the days when we don't think we can handle life.  Especially, when we are's when others can see how God is strong.  So, when you think you just can't handle anymore, remember that God is with you all the way.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Paper Cutz Challenge #42 make a card, LO or craft project using buttons plus ribbon, lace or hemp. Use any colors or theme you'd like.

My Son loves gumballs, so it inspired a fun layout!
The orange polka dot paper is from My Minds Eye.
The letters are cut from Tangerine Bazzill card stock at 3" using the Lyrical Letters Cricut cartridge on Jumbo.

The gumball machine is cut at 4" using the snow globe from Doodlecharms.  The top was cut in white and bottom in black.  I also added an 1 1/2" extra base to the machine.  Assorted buttons are adhered with glue dots and the machine is adhered to the page using 1/4" scor-tape for extra holding power.  Orange ribbon was used for trim.  A patterned swirly paper completes the look. 

The second page layout needs a little more embellishment, but was matted again with tangerine & orange Bazzill card stock with ivory.  My camera work is a little crooked; however the pages are straight, thankfully.  Enjoy the day!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Quote for the Day

"Pain is inevitable; but misery is optional.  We cannot avoid pain, but we can avoid joy."  Tim Hansel

Choose to look for the good and fill your day with happiness!
"...a merry heart hath a continual feast."  Proverbs 15:15b

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Quote for the Day

"When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left,
and could say, I used everything you gave me."  Erma Bombeck

May we each explore the talents God has given us and use them to help, love and guide others to receiving God's love and forgiveness!  It's a challenge that we should remember every day!

Monday, May 17, 2010

April Showers Really Do Bring May Flowers!

Just when you think you can't stand anymore rain in the Spring...things begin to grow and the color of the earth returns to green and we are reminded that we needed the rain.  It has been said that rain falls on the just and the unjust, but the unjust steals the just's umbrella! 

 Many times when it rains, I think of that little saying and it always makes me smile!  The next time you are trudging through the rain (in sandals) and need a little chuckle...think of this saying and hold on to your umbrella, instead of parking it at the never know.

Enjoy some pictures of what God made the
April showers bring to my backyard.  
Beautiful signs of Springtime!


Soon these signs of Spring will be tasty treats!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Quote for the Day

"They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel." 
Carl W. Buechner

Who do you have the opportunity to make feel loved today?  We should always back up our words with actions.  It's the loving actions that will be remembered.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Big Thunderstorms

"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass.  It's about learning to dance in the rain!" 
Author Unknown

It's the time of the year when we have big thunderstorms.  We often see rain slanting sideways, thunder cracking and lightning lighting up the sky.  Heavy rains and sometimes hail bring flooding and damage to nature and our property.  These storms catch us by surprise and many times without an umbrella!  My favorite instance is when you are out and it's pouring the rain and guess where your umbrella the car.

Just as thunderstorms catch us by surprise, storms in our lives come often unexpected.  Wouldn't it be nice if we received a weather report on our life which said, "this year is a chance of cloudy & stormy prepared!"  How do we handle the storm that sometimes knocks us back a few steps?  Many people retreat to safety and try to just survive until the storm passes.  Who do you turn to?  

Our quote today is very relevant to life.  It has been said that, life is what happens when you are making other plans.  When we are caught off guard and life sends a storm, we must choose how we will weather the storm.  Looking to the One who can help us walk through the storm and give us strength when we are tired and want to give up is the first step.  Next, we must determine to not let the storm strip all of the life out of us.  We must choose to allow God to work something good, even in the middle of the rain & lightning.  

He will teach us to dance in the rain and even be thankful for the storm, which causes us to become closer to Him and stronger in our faith.  The next time you find yourself in the middle of a storm in your life, don't hunker down and wait for it to pass, while life passes you by...learn to dance in the rain and be thankful even in the storms!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Cricut Cardz Challenge #23

Guidelines:  make a card using the color red as the main color, and use any cartridge(s) or theme you'd like.

Top fold card measures 4 1/4" x 5 1/2".  My Big Idea floral print paper was used to cover the card front.  Also in the same paper stack a 3 1/2" x 4" mat was used and inked around the edges using an Around the Block Ink It tool in red.  A dandelion was cut from Storybook at 3" in red prism Bazzill cardstock and mounted with foam tape to get a nice raised effect.  Craft ribbon and a white button completes this Spring card in the theme of red.  Thanks for coming by!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Inherited From Whom?

Unfortunately, some do not know their biological parents or did not have a good relationship with them.  For others, conversations with family throughout the years can include, "You have your Mother's nose or your Father's eyes."  Families are quick to point out characteristics that match others in the family.  For example, when a baby is born...everyone wants to claim at least one feature that the baby inherited from them.  It's a bragging right!

What features can you match to family members?  Personally, I have my Mother's hands and my Father's nose.  It's interesting to look at your physical characteristics and try to see who you inherited them from.  What about other characteristics that are passed down through the generations?  Of all the physical attributes that my parents passed down to me, there was even more important things that they gave me.  When I think of Mother's Day, I am reminded of things that my Mother gave me, which I can still recognize in my life today as being a part of who she is.  My Mother, Pat Goodin has a true Mother's heart.  She has passed down and taught me to care deeply for others, love them unconditionally and give with a loving attitude.  Most people have some or a few of these qualities, but few exhibit them in the daily lives over and over again to all they meet.

The way I watched her help others and provide for their needs, even when we were in need also, gave me a sense of thinking of others first and allowing God to help care for your own needs.  I never saw her love for family falter, even in the midst of troubling times and difficult circumstances.  She has always remained faithful to her family and puts them first.  My Mom taught me to share and give and I am reminded of a time when she bought me some special stationery.  I had cousins that lived out of town, so I wanted to share my special gift with them also.  Being a child, not understanding the weight and cost of mailing letters, I sent at least half of my gift.  It was a very selfless thing to do as a child; however, my aunt wasn't too happy when she had a COD (Cash on Delivery) for this letter full of stationery.  I only knew it was good to give.

So, on this Mother's Day, I thank God for my Mother, who has demonstrated her faith in God and a Godly love that she passed down to me giving me the greatest joy of thinking of others, loving unconditionally and giving in love.  My prayer is that one day, my son will be able to look back and see that he inherited these same qualities from me.

Happy Mother's Day Mom!  Here's a card I made especially for you!  I love you!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Quote for the Day

"The measure of a life, after all, is not it's duration but it's donation."  Corrie Ten Boom

In a fast paced society where we pay for gas at the pump, run through the car wash, get cash at the bank in the drive-thru, eat at a fast food restaurant through the drive-thru, run to ball practice and heat something up at home in the microwave and watch what we recorded on the DVDR, do we take time to think about the measure of our lives?

Corrie Ten Boom gave her safety, family and everything she had for a cause she believed in.  She put others first and held to her principles sharing her faith, even in the face of death, because it was the right thing to do.  She believed that even though she may not be able to live long years of fun filled days, it was more important to live the time she could, doing good for others and standing for what was right.  She treated others the way she did her family, with love, care and she would have given her life for them.  She shared the love of Christ with those who were mistreated and cast aside.  

It was apparent that Corrie Ten Boom demonstrated in her life what was in her heart.  The measure of her life was the donation of Godly love that put others first and herself last.  It was better to help others than remain safe while seeing others hurting, when she could do something about it.  The Bible teaches that if we know we should do something that is right, but we do not do it, then we are wrong.
We should each take time every day and ask ourselves how our busy life can be measured that day.  Are we donating something to God and others or are we simply filling our duration of time given?  It's our choice how we spend our lives.

You can read more about Corrie Ten Boom at the following website:

Monday, May 3, 2010

Thought for the Day

Need a New Life?   God Accepts Trade-In's!

Life can be going along so fast that we don't see disasters coming until it's too late.  If you find yourself in a place where their is no meaning or purpose and you just seem to be spinning your wheels, then it's time to evaluate your life and see where God is in your life.  He accepts us in the middle of our disasters and we get to trade-in our mess for forgiveness and love and a new life with God as the focus, which will give us purpose and fulfillment that we cannot achieve any other way.   

So...if you wish you could start life over and have a new life...Remember He accepts trade-in's and will make your life beautiful again!