Sunday, June 12, 2011

Image of the Maker Retreat

Mercy. Runnermom truly did much running last week--on the highways! I was home a total of two days! First week of summer, and I did major traveling up and down the roads! But, that's ok! Had an out of town photo shoot (so MUCH fun!!!), then college orientation (so VERY expensive!!!), and then....a retreat! Just for me! I had no idea how much I would need one by the end of the week. My soul needed much filling, and the Lord was willing!

The retreat took place in a small community tucked in hidden mountains not far from Asheboro, NC. I actually did not get lost driving there. Amazing! And, I worked in a trip to Mary Jo's fabrics along the way! I have NEVER seen so much fabric in one location as was in this warehouse! I'll show you some pics of my next project--when I have a chance to work on it.

I went not thinking that I would know anyone....wrong! As I was checking in, my sweet friend, Lisa Whittle, met me with a hug! What a beautiful heart she has. I met so many lovely ladies with hearts so full of love for Christ. My precious roomie was also a runnermom! Some ladies were local; others came from as far as Texas and Michigan. We worshiped along with Christa Wells and Nichole Witt--they are SO incredibly talented!  We sang, prayed, and heard from the Word with author and speaker Ann Voskamp. Her message was for us to search our hearts and see what God was creating within us.  Are we using our talents in a way that glorify Him? Are we embarrassed with the gifts that He has given us? Do we have the courage to use and share the gifts that He has blessed us with to the best of our ability?  God gives us beauty each day---how do we attend to it?

"And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion a the day of Jesus Christ."  Phil. 13:12

Friends, Ann touched on so much more....things that I still need to ponder and reread in the Word. But one of the things that He stirred in my heart was my photography business. Am I using it in ALL the ways He desires? I have been struggling with trying to discern His will in one specific area. It's a scary place for me! It's not a moment where I can tell my client, "Wait a minute, let's do that shot again!" When a wedding is taking place, you have to  be ready and focused at all times! Friends, He has been placing opportunities in my path--which I have really tried to skirt around! But, God will continue to whisper to my heart until I answer Him. As Ann put it, am I willing?  Two years ago, He placed a precious friend in my path to encourage me to shoot photos for others--not just my family and friends. She even went as far as to ask me to contribute photos for a book of hers---her first. Scared?  Yes, m'am! Obedient?  Most definitely. Am I willing to say yes again? Praying....

Hope y'all enjoy some of the shots from the retreat! New faces and new friends! Many more pics--I'll share more later!

Me, Jess--the other runnermom and my roomie, TJ, Kristi, Carrie, and Lisa

Nichole, Christa, and Ann

Broken pieces that will become whole

Lisa Whittle and me! Just love this gal from Proverbs 31 Ministries!

 My other Lisa--I think I have met my match with the camera!! Too cute!
Sweet blessings,

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Texting and Sweet Tea

Before graduation last week, Hubby's parents came up to celebrate. I figured that mine were having their own celebration in Heaven :). They came bearing gifts for the graduate, little brother ( they always bring them both something--too sweet!), and yours truly---my belated birthday present.

They brought Child #1 a new Bible for graduation. It's a beautiful leather Hebrew and Greek Key Word Study Bible (NASB). I love his new Bible! Runnermom may have to ask for this one at Christmas!!  My father-in-law is a retired Methodist minister, so seeing him in this picture flipping through the Scriptures is a familiar sight.

I collect Fiesta china! Love this stuff. I got hooked on it when we did a marathon in West Virginia at Marshall University a few years ago. It's made in that state, and it's sold at the WELCOME center as you leave Virginia to enter W. Va.! It's colorful and heavy duty.  We've not broken any yet! Plus....they make a gi-normous bowl that Hubby uses for his cereal each morning! Received another place setting for my collection.

For dinner, we took the family to a really cool restaurant in downtown Greenville. It was a Brazilian grill. We had a lovely cold bar and salad bar first. Then, the wait staff began to bring out a huge variety of meats on skewers that ranged from flank steak to pork tenderloin to bacon wrapped chicken (my favorite!) to fillet! Yum!!! The above red button would show that we were full and needed no more. On the other side, the green meant 'bring it on!" Runnermom's family walked out of there completely full!  Mercy!

Child #2 wasn't sure what piece of meat he was about to try!  Love that expression!

I looked down the table and saw this! Do they ever stop with the texting?? Granted, he was through eating, and we were waiting on the check,but....! Anyone else have this issue? Of course, my other one was gulping down as much sweet tea--which was very good!----as he could!

My mother-in-law is a hoot! She saw this huge motorcycle and had me make her picture beside it. I don't think she's quite a Harley woman---but you never know!!

Join me over at Sweet Shot Tuesday for more fun pictures.

Sweet Blessings,

Friday, June 3, 2011

The Day After

Sweet friends, as I sit and type, dark clouds threaten over the horizon. Thunder has been around for an hour. Child #2 is doing a happy dance---the first swim meet of the season may be cancelled before it starts! An opportunity to stay at home tonight? Be still and watch a movie? I would SOOOoooo love that!

Yesterday, Child #1 graduated from high school. It was a bittersweet moment. As "Pomp and Circumstance" played, I was a little teary-eyed and had the lip quivering thing going on.  But as the next wave of 100 children marched into the Bi-Lo center followed by the next 100 (500 kiddos, y'all!), the tears stopped, and I began watching the faces of the graduates. They had no tears--just smiles of joy and excitement! How can a mama be sad and lost in the 18 years of memories when the guests of honor are grinning from ear to ear! So, I joined the smiles and took a gazillion pictures!

After lunch, Child #2 began to ask (beg, actually!!) his daddy to take him to the DMV to try for his driver's permit. In SC, you can get a permit at the age of 15--I think that's crazy, but no one asked me! Either Hubby or I have to be in the car with him at all times. And, right now it's going to be Hubby! My little child makes Runnermom nervous!!

He practiced backing up and down the driveway first! He did not take out any shrubs or trees. Good!

Hubby was not nervous at all as he let Child #2 chauffeur him down the street. Total confidence in that baby boy!

So, what have y'all been up to?
Sweet blessings,