Wednesday, November 13, 2013

An Engagement Story

Last night I got the surprise of my life when my boyfriend asked me to marry him! To give you a little background, we have been courting for 2 1/2 years and although I knew that we were heading towards marriage, I had no idea that it would be last night in the middle of the street that he would get down on one knee and ask me to be his wife.

My Tuesday night was looking like an ordinary Tuesday night by all means. I got off work, drove home through frustrating traffic, and stopped in at the grocery store to buy all the deals before they expired. I drove over to his brother's home, believing that I was simply there to attend a birthday party.

As I had been driving over, the headache that I had was verging on becoming a migraine. I wondered if I should turn around and go home. When I finally got to his brother's house, I pulled up to the driveway, and noticed my boyfriend walking out to his car.

Because my head felt so badly and I had groceries in the car, all I was thinking about was getting inside and stashing them in his brother's fridge. I got out of my car and headed straight for the house, when I heard him calling my name.

"What?" I mumbled through the pain.

"Can you come here? I have something to show you."

"Okay" I muttered and trudged over to his car still holding all my groceries.

He opened the door to his truck and pulled out a gift basket with different crackers and cheeses. "I didn't get you anything for our 2 1/2 year anniversary so I got you this."

"Aw, thanks" I replied.

"Oh, and I also got you this" he said, reaching back into his truck. He pulled out a huge red box that was full of different biscuits from different countries.

"Woah, that is a huge box" At this point I started thinking "Man, he is really overdoing himself here!" but I still had no thought of what was to come.

"We can go back into the house now....oh but wait, there is one more thing..." Out came a bouquet of roses and I though "Wow...he is REALLY overdoing himself for 2 1/2 years."

Then he kneeled to the ground and I finally realized what was happening. He was asking me to marry him. And of course I said yes!

There is no ring as of yet, because he wants me to go with him to pick it out. (The more I think about it, this is very thoughtful of him, considering that I don't usually wear jewelry and I would prefer something with a low profile)

We went back to the house, and celebrated with his family, who knew all along what was up. We called my parents (he had asked them if he could marry me so they already knew), my brother, some relatives, and a few friends. It was an amazing night and the reality of it barely sunk in.

I couldn't be happier to be looking forward to a future with him. I admire him for his character and I have seen him face challenges and grow over the past 3 1/2 years of getting to know him. I couldn't be happier with our courtship, the foundation we built, and the sense of peace it is bringing me now. I am blessed that God brought me a man who is a strong leader, yet has an amazing sense of compassion. I am also thrilled that he grew up in the country and is a real manly man! We share many life goals, agree on theological matters, believe in raising as many children as the Lord sees fit to give us, and are for homeschooling them all the way. There is so much to be thankful for today!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Cats are Everywhere

My neighbor's cat "Taser" sitting on my new drier and staring in my window like the Peeping Tom that he is. Every time I see this photo it cracks me up. 

It is a good thing I like cats, because I am surrounded by them. There is always a cat in my backyard.  I have counted 15 different cats. They hide under my shed. They crawl on my fence, climb my tree, and hop in my laundry basket when I hang clothes on the line. They even poop in my garden, which I am really going to have to do something about. How do you get a cat to stop going in something that looks like a giant litterbox is a question I need to solve before Spring...

Sometimes they collect at my backyard and form a kitty committee:

Like I said, it's a good thing I adore the creatures, because I would be otherwise driven mad with the full-scale cat invasion!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Discipline, Discipline, Discipline

One thing I admire about the country life, is how much discipline it takes to raise your own food and care for animals. It's no easy "simple life," and it's funny to me how much I used to think of it that way. When people talk about going back to the simple ways of the past, they don't realize what they're saying. It's true that there's something about technology that clouds our brains and make our world seemed rushed. But it's also true that technology has made many tasks more simple.

Going back to the ways of the past usually requires more time, more patience, and more self-control. And I think that's why I long for it--because I want my life to be disciplined rather than to be led by my feelings, pursuing comfort at every turn.

A verse that has been on my heart this week is the same verse I had written on the chalkboard above my bed:

 "For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline."
 ~2 Timothy 1:7

Over and over again at my ladies small group, we ask for prayer for discipline. It's what we need. It's probably what everyone needs. It's so much easier to put on a Netflix movie when I get home from work than to do something productive. But if I'm ever going to achieve all my goals of having a garden, getting a chicken coop for the back, and learning to cook, etc, I'm going to have to have discipline. I'm going to have to force myself to act against my feelings and just do something.

There's nothing I hate more than getting home at 6:00 in the evening after battling traffic and having to start a meal (thank goodness for the days I use the crockpot!). I'm already hungry by that time, and I find it hard to do anything when I'm hungry. It's so much easier to look for a quick snack of chips than to put my mind towards making a full nutritious meal.

But, here, in the daily everyday things of life, this is where I learn discipline and put myself to the test. This is where I strengthen my muscles for doing things I don't feel like doing. And over and over again, I have to remind myself that I won't win the war (achieve my goals) if I don't fight the day to day battles. And with that fresh on my mind, I better go conquer that sink full of dishes before church!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Cleaning up the Cupboards

When I moved into my new place, my kitchen was not in the best of shape. It wasn't horrible, but it wasn't great either. The worst of it was the inside of the cupboards. They did not look like a place you would want to store your clean dishes. Luckily, this issue was one that could be resolved easily. All it required was some elbow grease and some pretty liner paper I picked up at a great price at TJ Maxx.


After--much better!

Before--Weird stains...


And the worst cupboard of them all:

Looks good enough to at least store the cat items in...

Chalkboards Galore

I have fallen in love with chalkboards over the last year, so it's no surprise to me that I've added not one but two to my new home. And perhaps this is only the beginning, because can you ever have too many?

I'm using them mainly to display Scripture verses, because it is a great reminder to me as I go about daily life. I've always wanted to fill my home with reminders of my Lord and Savior and His Word, and this is my first step in incorporating Scripture into my house.

Every week, I try to put a new verse up, giving me something to think about and meditate on. I can't wait to find more ways to put it in my home, because really, I need to be constantly reminded and have my attitude adjusted to be in line with His Word!