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Monthly Archives: July 2012

Beauty Personified

Beauty Personified

Have you ever drawn the connection between praise to God and self? We say God is perfect, gracious, beautiful.

“So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.”

Pretty simple picture, right? If God is beautiful, and we are created in His image, then we are beautiful. This is not vanity, but another way that God shows himself in us.

Earthly fashions come and go; one century we prefer waifish men and women constricted by tight-laced corsets, fainting at appropriate moments. Another century lauds ample figures, which would be considered dangerously obese by today’s standards. Speaking of the current trend, pop culture glorifies a woman with a preteen waist, mature hips, and the breasts of a nursing mother. (I’m sure we can all agree live in three different life-phases simultaneously. Please appreciate the sarcasm.)

Some of the most beautiful women I know don’t look like the stars I enjoy seeing on the red carpet wearing the ‘latest and greatest.’

Physical beauty brings to mind women who “work it.” They appreciate what they have and use it to the fullest. One of my zumba teachers, for example. Kristin is curvy and has two children. When she shakes at class it I can’t stop moving. She is gorgeous, but never more so than when she gets freaky on the dance floor. Other women may try to hide their curves, but she celebrates herself, her body, and life by dancing almost every day of the week.

I think curves are great. In fact, I personally think skinny jeans look better on a fuller figure, but who asked me?

The point is, regardless of the physical attributes we were born with and have cultivated, we all mirror God. When we worship Him, let us be uplifted by remembering that we, called to do His work, are also created, most beautifully, in His image.


Western Woman

 “Smell the flowers and drink your coffee.”


*Beauty in God’s image. Picture courtesy of my sister Anne Carolyn Towner

Space is Money

Space is Money

Here I go again… I love talking about space and money. That is because space is money, folks. You know that box of clothes that might fit or come back in style someday? Well, first of all, saving these items is costing us at least several hundred dollars every year! In my case, when you factor in two UHaul trucks for a move, a storage unit at $65/month, we are looking at several thousand dollars. Secondly, if it comes back in style, we can always buy back used clothes from the local second-hand/consignment store. Makes sense to me. Donate, get a tax right-off, save on storage, and purchase at charity-supporting thrift stores to support a good cause?

Oh, yeah.  Ditch the stuff that is collecting dust. I don’t like dusting. My mother-in-law has allergies, anyway.

Todays tip is truly dynamite… read to the end 🙂

The results will include:

  1. Reduced stress. Too much stuff creates over-stimulation on the brain. We should only require our brains to encompass the things we actively need and enjoy. Examples of such might include the coffeemaker and a collection of soothing artwork on the walls. Not included in this category might be a heart-shaped cake pan (really?) and Barbie collection from preteen days (If it’s worth money, then sell it already!). Be your own judge if you can. If you can’t, invite a ruthless friend over to help you make a large donation to the GoodWill.  Above all, don’t steal brainpower from the things that really matter due to material distractions.
  2. Safety first. A clean floor is a safe floor. The same goes for all areas of the house. I have had scars and bruises all over my body thanks to clutter that got the better of me. Stuff on the wall, on a shelf, in a storage unit… it’s all clutter, and it can and does cause injuries to a lot of people every year!
  3. Shorter getting-ready time: A generous assumption is that we use as much as half of our wardrobe. Give yourself a break, bless someone in need of new-used clothes, and don’t waste time sorting through clothes you never wear every morning.
  4. Extra cash for that bucket-list item! We lots of money every month on housing and storage. Why not lose the storage unit and get something you want? (Rather than blow it on stuff that you don’t want–hey, if it’s in storage you clearly don’t want it badly enough to see it even on a monthly basis.) If you don’t have a storage unit, some extra space to set up the sewing machine (or whatever your craft is) would be a much better use of your creativity.

How am I doing? One more trip to deliver a queen-size bed to someone who can actually use it, one trip to the dump to drop off a broken washing machine (yes, it is in the storage unit…) and a few odds and ends placed in the garage and there will be no more storage unit for us! Uh-huh. $65/month will be put to good use.

Organizing tip of the day: Whatever would not be packed for a one-month trip goes into off-season storage, or it just goes bye-bye! Space is money 🙂

As you organize, donate, and trash, don’t forget to smell the flowers and drink your coffee.

Cheers! To the best readers in the world. I love you all, and I know you can do it!

Bucketlisting at 25

Bucketlisting at 25

No, I don’t expect to die anytime soon. But we only have one life to live, so I’m thinking about all the many, many, many, many, many, many things I would like to do before I go home to be with the Lord. Why should we wait until it is too late before realize that we never did the things we dreamed about?

Starting now, I am actively planning my adventures with this in mind (I’ve always sought what I considered to be adventurous, but you know, there are levels.)  Urgency, people. It’s a big world out there.

  1. August: I plan to be Zumba certified. That will be a great dream-come-true!
  2. September: I have the most beautiful design waiting to be inked.  Shhh, don’t tell anyone…
  3. October and November: I will buy a Silk’N (because it will really change my life) and take a motorcycle trip (with Lori driving)
  4. November: Romantic getaway with Michael. Somewhere exciting, like a resort.
  5. December: I think I deserve to finally buy myself some really great cowboy boots.
  6. Also…. teach Archangela to dance Zumba as she keeps begging me,
  7. buy Michael a steel blue F350 Extended Cab Longbox
  8. go to Florida and learn some new dance moves from my friend Rebecca
  9. skydive in Mexico, a family cruise trip
  10. an educational RV adventure for my little girls to learn more about our country
  11. Hug more, complain less
  12. Share a lot more laughs with my girls
  13. Kiss my husband more often
  14. Seek God with all my heart
  15. And much, much more!

What’s on your list?