Saturday, May 4, 2013

What I Do In My Spare Time by Emily Cote

So...just this past year, I've become...I guess you could say...a little bit of a Youtube watcher. Most of you probably don't know that about me, because it's not something I advertise, but it's something I enjoy doing in my spare time. Instead of watching tv, I keep up with their new videos. And JacksGap was the first channel I started watching last fall. There are quite a few different channels I watch but they're my favorite. They're pretty great and let's just face it...adorable. I don't care what logic you drag it through, they're adorable and they have British accents. Let that sink in.
Anyway, last Monday they posted a new video and I thought it was super fun and now I want to turn my bedroom into a ball pit. Take a look and enjoy.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Salted Pretzel Caramel Brownies...SAY WHAT by Grace Barbettini

Salted. Pretzel. And Caramel. In a BROWNIE. Oh my lanta. Yes, you heard me alright.

I'll just cut to the chase and give you the recipe. Yuuuumm-o.

Here you go - Click ME!

Beauty in the Ugly by Grace Barbettini

     Emily Cote's post this morning inspired me. Like her, I too had set an alarm in hopes of getting lots of things accomplished by noontime, only to find myself waking up at noon instead.
     Feeling a bit frustrated, I also went on Facebook to check in on my friends lives, and see if I could find anything chipper that would change my not so happy mood. That's when I came across her post on the Quirk. I'm so glad I took the time to read it, because it sparked something inside of me. 
     In "Weeping for the Kids" Marilyn said something that really hit me - "There is Beauty all around us..." and I think this is something that we overlook a lot of the time. Sure, everyone knows that the Eiffel Tower is beautiful, that the beach is a gorgeous place to be, and that if you have flowers planted in your front yard, it is a pretty thing. But that is not what I am talking about.  A quote by Marcel Proust popped into my head as I'm writing this - "The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes." We get so caught up in our everyday lives that common things become so dull and mundane, that we need something so grandeur and strikingly beautiful to catch our eyes. Why not be thrilled with the ordinary? If you choose to see things in a different light, with new eyes that haven't been dulled by the thinking of our society, you may be surprised at what is around you. I encourage you to take the time and walk around your neighborhood, or local park. Get up close to the grass, notice all of the life that is going on around you. The delicate way an ant picks up a crumb, the gentle drops of water from a leaf after rainfall, or even the way rust peels off of an old can. 
     Children are perfect examples. When you're a little kid, almost everything excites you. Even if it's not the typical thing to get excited about. Why do we have to grow out of that incredible awe over everything? I say we don't. Yes, we become used to certain things, but why not step back and start with fresh eyes, becoming unused to everything all over again.
     I encourage you to go out today and look for the beauty that is around you. Not the typical beauty, but the kind that gets overlooked. Find something beautiful in the ugly. And once you have found it, ponder awhile. Whenever I find something beautiful, it always stirs up thoughts of thankfulness. I saw another quote one day and it said "Gratitude is the healthiest of all human emotions." and I absolutely love that. Even if you don't fee like thanking God for simple things in your life, once you start, you begin to see how fortunate you are, and by the end, I always feel so happy.

Go out there today and find something beautiful.
Go out there today and give thanks for the everyday things.   
     Go out there today and be awed by the ordinary.

Weeping For The Kids by Marilyn Gardner: Shared by Emily Cote

This morning I rolled out of bed later than I had anticipated, and already felt irritated with myself for not setting an alarm. Then I looked around my room to see that it looks like a hurricane just blew in. To be honest, I wasn't all that chipper when I woke up, underneath it all is the fact that my last day of high school is next week, and I have to say goodbye to people, and it's scaring me. I've been on the verge of tears for a good part of the week. Then I got on Facebook to check the everyday things that might make me laugh or sometimes just more frustrated than I was before. But then I saw that my Dad's cousin (I call her Aunt but that's another story.) had posted in her blog, and that always interests me, because she's so full of wisdom and I love her perspective on life. When I read this post in particular, I was amazed at God's incredible faithfulness to us, even when things look like they're going all wrong. A look at my generation and how sad it is that the majority of them are rejecting God. But he never leaves us. Even in times of great suffering. If you have a few minutes in your day, please take a look at it. It made me thankful today.