The weekend.

Monday, October 31, 2011

We had the most glorious weekend celebrating Fall with dear friends. They drove up from Athens, Georgia to be with us and we loved every minute. Some guests leave and you're kind of relieved to get your house and routine back. Others you just wish could stay for a few more minutes... or a few more days. They are those kind of guests (more like family, really). And they happen to be gorgeous and obnoxiously photogenic. :) We did a mini photo shoot while hiking through the woods in one of our favorite spots in Franklin.

The brunettes

 The blondes

 Creek playing

Michael and Staci,
We loved our time with you... the dinners at home, the s'mores, the Christmas music, the Fall Festival,  the community. We are so blessed by your friendship and cannot wait for you to come back!
Lots of love,
The Newbys

A whole flock of sparrows.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Friday morning did not begin well. Within an hour of waking up, I saw a new grade that had been posted that was the lowest grade I've gotten on any assignment during all of nursing school. And it wasn't because I had done bad work. It was because I had inadvertently skipped an entire section of the assignment.

I drove to school with a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. It wasn't just the grade - it's been this entire semester that just won't let up. I feel pulled in so many directions: striving to do well in school, managing a very busy Etsy shop, being a wife - you get the idea. And I don't feel like I'm doing well at any of it. The grade was evidence of just that. I've been distracted, dropping plates and disappointing people (or just myself) left and right.

So on the rainy drive to school, with tears in my eyes, I prayed. It didn't feel like a holy moment of willing submission. It felt like an "I'm giving up because I obviously can't do this alone" kind of moment. I prayed that God would remind me that He's in control. I prayed that He would show me a piece of His heart, that He cares about the little things that are big things for me.

As I drove and prayed and sat in traffic, I followed a car with this bumper sticker on the back:
The Contributor is a newspaper written and sold by homeless people to help them make a living. It's a wonderful business to help people get their feet on the ground. So I thought to myself, "The next Contributor person I see, I'm stopping." 

A few hours later, on my way to my parents' house after class, I accidentally got off on the wrong exit. And lo and behold, there stood a Contributor person selling papers in the freezing rain. I rolled down my window, handed him a few dollars, and thanked him for the paper. 

It was only then that I saw the front of the paper and gasped:
The feature story was about Bhutanese refugees. The same refugees I've been working with all semester. Had there been almost anything else on the cover, I don't think I would've noticed. But when I saw people I've worked with and really care for, my eyes filled with tears.

God reminded me so clearly: He's in control.
He put that car in front of mine (as I prayed, no less) with a bumper sticker that made me think.
He let me get off at the wrong exit so that I'd see that man standing there with his stack of papers.
And He put my Bhutanese friends on the cover to remind me that He is so in control. No doubt about it. It was as if I saw that newspaper and instead of seeing the story of the Bhutanese, I saw His own words:
"What is the price of two sparrows - one copper coin? But not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it. And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don't be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows." (Matt. 10:29-31)

He knows me.
He loves me enough to give me the glimpse of His sovereignty that I so desperately needed.
What a good Father He is to me.

This girl is into her books...

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Especially Hop on Pop. 
I love her serious, concentrated face with those pouty lips.
I love how she turns about 15 pages at a time.
And I really love that bobby pin in her hair (that she didn't realize was there). 
I just love this girl.
(Can you tell?)

Autumn light.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I couldn't help it. It was just too pretty to stay inside and study/sew/clean. I love Nashville in the Fall. It was warm enough today to walk around barefoot as the sun set and photograph the hazy light playing in the leaves. We have friends visiting this weekend and they are surely in for a treat. Hold on just a few more days, Fall. Pretty please? 

More comfort food.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

It's a common theme these days: 
Have a long day at the hospital = come home and indulge in comfort food. You've seen it before.

I'm in my pediatrics rotation right now and it's one of the rotations I've really been dreading, to be honest. I can say my first day was probably better than my expectations (especially when the little guy I was caring for climbed onto my lap and wouldn't let go for the entire shift), but it was still pretty sad seeing kids so pitiful and sick. Unless God does something miraculous in my heart (and He could, of course), I can safely say this isn't the area for me. I'm more and more amazed every day with nurses who are clearly called to this kind of work.

So grilled cheese it was... and pajamas before 7pm... and "Look Who's Talking" on TV.
Pretty perfect, I'd say.

The happiest little girl you ever did see.

Monday, October 24, 2011

I know I'm a little biased in this, but this niece of mine is deliciously adorable. After not seeing her for over 9 months, it's about time I got the chance to see (and photograph) her. So excuse the many, many photos in this post. I just can't get enough.

Learning to walk

Lots of love from Mimi ("Mim")

 Making friends with Keebler ("Da-dah")

Just being the sweetest girl
(while Mommy and Mimi danced like crazy behind the camera) :)

It is well.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

This morning I was in a creative/DIY kind of mood... and this being one of my favorite hymns, I thought it deserved a place on our wall. (I also made sure to include the hymn writer's name because his story is so moving ). I'll make sure to post a photo when it's printed and framed. If you'd like to download it for printing, just click on it and drag it to your desktop and it should give you a very large version of the print. It has a white border around it to make it easily frameable. 
Happy weekend!

61 years.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Last week when my grandparents were in town, I pulled them outside for a few minutes to take advantage of the gorgeous Fall day and a 61-year-old marriage that's as sweet as ever. I really, really love these.

9/11 Memorial.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Yesterday morning, Mom and I took a trip to the newly opened 9/11 Memorial at Ground Zero.

We caught the E train headed south and once we showed our tickets and went through multiple checkpoints, we ended up here:
It's the footprint of the South Tower of the World Trade Center, which was the first tower to be hit. The waterfalls symbolize falling tears and viewers cannot see the bottom of the deep pit in the middle. The theme of the memorial is "Reflecting Absence" - not only the absence of these two towers that symbolized such strength but the absence of 2,900 people who cannot be replaced. When the sun hits the water, it sparkles and looks like thousands of tiny camera flashes going off, reminding us of each precious life that was lost. The memorial could not have been more perfectly done.

Around the perimeters of the towers are the names. Thousands of names. Names of victims, heroes, and stories we will never know on this side of heaven. The most poignant moment for me is when I saw a woman find her loved one's name, slowly run her hands over it, and start to cry.

This name on the bottom stopped me in my tracks. There were lots like it: "... and her unborn child." It said so much to me that America would acknowledge that unborn child as a life that was lost.

Surrounding the memorial is construction. Those towers are being rebuilt, sending a message that though the terrorist got us in this battle, it's not over. Many of the construction workers rebuilding these towers are veterans which just brings tears to my eyes.

Standing at the site of these two towers and running my hands across dozens and dozens of names, I've never felt more patriotic. It felt like sacred, holy ground - and it's not something I can even put into words without taking you there and letting you experience it yourself.

So if you're in New York anytime soon, I can't recommend the experience enough. 
I'm so proud to be an American.
CopyRight © | Theme Designed By Hello Manhattan