Friday, June 28, 2013

Blog Design and Social Icons

Recently I have been spending quite a few hours researching blog advice and design tutorials.  I love blogging and enjoy having this little piece of creative space where I can design things and express interests to the world in ways that are (hopefully) appreciated by my readers!  So it is only natural for me to want to improve the aesthetics of my work space and the creativity of ways I communicate, right? Don't get me wrong, I would probably be blogging even if I didn't have any followers, but having followers and commenters definitely adds to the enjoyment! (which I believe any blogger can attest to)

That being said, Last night I finally struck gold!  I came across an easy tutorial that helped me get my "follow me" social icons on my blog!  Man have I had trouble figuring that out!! I had probably spent a week looking for tutorials and how-tos on getting social icons and if it wasn't for Olivia and her blog My Favourite Things I would probably still be searching. (THANK YOU OLIVIA!!!)

- Let's just all take a moment to glance over to the right and appreciate the social icon buttons..... little bit longer.... one more time... ok, great.  Aren't they awesome!?-

 Now that the icons have been appreciated I can move on to my next big project, My Header.  Oh goodness.  I read a tutorial last night and this morning on how to create your own header with photoshop.  Wow.  Am I the only one out there that thinks photoshop is absolutely confusing?  Whats up with the layers.  And how the heck do you get a good looking image from the pen tool?  That thing is crazy!  Anywho, the next few days I will be testing my eye's computer screen endurance while spending hours upon hours trying to figure this photoshop stuff out.

*Disclaimer*  once I become a mastermind in photoshop there will be no stopping me.  Prepare to be amazed.....

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Saving Grace

Its been on my heart to share my testimony with you all.  How can I have a Bible Study Blog and share the scriptures with you without sharing what the Lord has done for me?  How can I have a blog sharing the good things in life without sharing with you guys the absolute best thing in my life?!  I'm ashamed that I am just now writing this out to you....

I was raised in a God fearing and loving family.  Since before I can remember I have had a knowledge of the God who created all things and sustains all things.  I have always known that Jesus was God's only Son and as a sinless man died a death on a cross to pay the ransom for sinners.  I prayed "the prayer" in church at a very young age and professed my belief of Jesus as my own personal Savior  at my baptism in high school.  While I do not believe that praying "the prayer" and being baptized meant that I was a believer, I do know that The Lord broke the chains of my sin, blessed me with The Holy Spirit and revealed to me my sinfulness and my need of Him as my Savior.  The joy of the Lord was in me and I was given a strong desire to know Him and serve Him.  These desires have only grown stronger throughout the years.  He has given me a growing love for His law, understanding of His scripture and consciousness of my sin.  I definitely have times of doubt and fear, low seasons and droughts.  I have failed over and over again. I continue to sin against my God everyday.  But that's the point, that's the Gospel.  I'm not perfect.  Becoming a believer doesn't make me perfect either.  As a child of God, a christian, a believer in Christ I am still just as much a sinner as I was before.  It is only the Lord's Saving Grace that makes me a child of God, nothing of my own doing.  Not because I have become a better person.  Not because I'm better at not sinning.  No, it is because The Lord chose to lavish His loving grace upon me.  It is because Jesus died for me, so that my sins could be forgiven and I could be looked upon as righteous by a Holy God.  Giving in to His calling and accepting the Lord as my Savior may have been a one time thing, but my testimony, my christianity, is a daily walk with the Lord where my relationship with Him is deepened, my mind is renewed by His Word, my faith is strengthened by His truths and my steps are guided by His will.  All of this, my testimony, my relationship with Him and my daily choices are with the intention and prayer that The Lord of the Heaven and Earth is glorified and that His name is praised.  Amen.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Best Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookies!

{picture from tonight's batch of cookies, featured on my mother's pottery}

I've done it!  I have found THE recipe, and by THE I mean the yummiest gooiest most superb recipe for chocolate chip cookies!  Here's how it happened:

Our neighbor across the street, Ed, watched our sweet lil pup for us while we were out of town so I wanted to make him a "thank you" treat.  I was browsing on the internet for inspirationg and just happened to see a good looking picture for cookies on pinterest.  I clicked on the link and followed my way to macdaddy recipe itself.  I just happened to have all of the ingredients to conjure the cookies up, so conjure up I did....

Well, it just so happens that I am not really a big fan of chocolate chips cookies (who would have thunk?) so I didn't even try the cookies before I packaged them up and walked them over to Ed's.  There were a few cookies left though, so I gave some to Wil for work and took some to my work as well.

It wasn't too long after that that Wil exploded with enthusiasm on how amazing these cookies were.  His co-workers agreed they were fantastic.  My coworkers ate them up before I even knew what happened and Ed and his wife have said they were the best chocolate chips cookies they have ever had.

Wow.  And I didn't even try one.

So after all that fuss, I made them again tonight and tried one.  Yup.  They were right.  They are absolutely fantastic!

So, without further ado, make your way to the original recipe at OR follow the recipe I have posted below.  (The original recipe has nuts in it, but I make them without.)

You will Need:

1 Cup Butter, softened
1 Cup White Sugar
1 Cup packed brown sugar
2 Eggs
2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract
3 Cups All-Purpose Flour
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
2 Teaspoons Hot Water
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
2 Cups Semi-sweet Chocolate Chips


1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

2.  Cream together the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar until smooth.  Beat the eggs in one at a time, then stir in the vanilla.  Dissolve the baking soda in the hot water and add it to the batter along with the salt.  Stir in the flour one cup at a time.  Then add the chocolate chips.

3.  Drop spoonful portions of the batter onto an ungreased pan or baking stone. (I use a baking stone and they turn out perfectly gooey and crispy)

4.  Bake each batch about 10 minutes or until they are slightly brown.

Makes about 25-30 cookies.

Hope you enjoy!  I'd love to hear how you like them!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Rey Swimwear

     A friend shared this video on facebook today and I am so glad that she did.  It was a well spent 9 minutes watching Jessica Rey share her heart and her vision for women and the way they present themselves.

     I have always had a heart for modesty.  I have always struggled, as I am sure many women have, with the balance of modesty and wanting to be attractive.  In college and highschool I felt like it was a loosing battle to have cute in-style clothing (especially bathing suits) that were modest.  Not much has changed since then, as I still struggle and see others struggle with the same thing.

     I have had a dream of starting a clothing line that was super cute and modest but have absolutely no skills in the style or design department so I was extremely excited to watch this video and find that I was not alone in this mission and that someone else had thankfully stepped up to the plate!

     I definitely recommend watching this video and looking into her swimwear line at Rey Swimwear!  Who knows, maybe this will start a new trend and slowly fade back into cultural modesty!  You have to start somewhere, right?!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013


     The more Wil and I live in Chattanooga the more we love it.  It really is a fun city with lots of interesting and fun things to do!  This past weekend we were blessed with VIP tickets to Riverbend.  Riverbend is an 8 day outdoor concert that chattanooga has every year on the river.  The city closes off a section of downtown on the river and houses a handful of carnival food booths, fun things for kids and really great music.
     We had never been before so it was a real treat to be able to go.  The VIP seats on the pier were pretty neat and O.A.R. sounded great!

One of the best parts of the music festival is that I got to meet Dierks Bentley.  Yup, that's right.  Good ole Dierks.  I was very impressed with how down to earth and funny he was.  Plus, he has a really great signature... ;)

Yea, I'd say Chattanooga is treating us well.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Dream Home

   So, it looks like Wil and I might be building a home!  As terrified as I am to be making this huge step and signing our life away on the dotted line it is pretty exciting to think about building and creating a home just for us.  This is a very recent decision so we are still in the idea phase of planning.  Right now we are choosing what color the exterior should be, should there be staggered garages, which rooms should be wood/carpet, etc.  It is all overwhelming and exhilarating at the same time!
   There are a few things that I know for sure that I would love to have.  For example:

An Open Floor Plan

A small, but functional laundry room

Tile in the kitchen, Carpet in the Bedrooms

Dual Shower Heads

A nice relaxing back deck

*All of these images were found off of pinterest and had no links to them.  I will be happy to give credit  where credit is do on the pictures if you know where they are from.  Thanks!

What about you guys?  What are some things you would add to your dream home?  Have you already built your dream home and wish you had done something differently?  I'd love to hear any of your ideas!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013


Just got back from a wonderful fun filled family vacation!  Here are some sneak peek pictures from the cruise.  I'll post more pictures as well as get back to my regular blog posts soon, don't worry!  But for now I will leave you with a few, mon!

St. Thomas
St. Thomas
Dawn Beach, St. Maarten
Dawn Beach, St. Maarten
Atlantis, Bahamas
The siblings on Dawn Beach, St. Maarten
Local Restaurant on Dawn Beach, St. Maarten
Wil and I at Dawn Beach, St. Maarten