Recently:)

We just returned form a wonderful trip to my favorite state (other than Oregon) Colorado:)
We enjoyed reuniting with many of our Colorado friends, and even got to hear a GREAT message from Kevin Swanson in person:) It is very much worth the listen. Check out the sermon on SermonAudio.com http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?m=t&s=1211381887

Here are some photos of our trip! Hope you enjoy! Let me know your thoughts!

                                          The siblings at a Castle!
This was a hilarious sign at the house we stayed at!
We jokingly said that our house would be overflowing with people and stuff if we followed this rule:)



                                                           





Evan in front of the beautiful house we stayed at!


The view from our rental house!


The front porch of the house!


Pikes Peak from our rental house!


Mount Hood from the airplane! It was amazing!


I really liked this picture:)


Garden of the gods in Colorado!


Mom and Yvonne making dinner:)


Dad and Evan playing a game:)


One last memory of beautiful Colorado:)

Overall we really enjoyed our time in Colorado, and can't wait until we can return:)
" Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me, Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure: Calling a ravenous bird from the east, the man that executeth my counsel from a far country: yea, I have spoken it, I will also bring it to pass; I have purposed it, I will also do it." Isaiah 46:9-11

Happy Birthday to my Wonderful Sister:)

The Best is Yet to Be!
By: Elanee Smythe

As I think about you today,
a flood of memories overwhelms me.
Memories that I don't want to go away,
of how you've lived faithfully.

In the midst of conflict, and strife,
you are always steadfast and sure,
You've had your ups and downs in life,
but, you've taught me how to endure.

Knowing you has been such a blessing,
You're a friend like no other.
You encourage all who know you,
whether sister, friend, or brother.

You've a gracious spirit, & forgiving heart.
You're organized, and compassionate,
highly motivated, and really smart,
But best of all, you're very patient.

Patience is very challenging,
especially when the future is so bleak.
You've taught me to ask God for strength,
and acknowledge that we're weak.

Your life is not a mystery,
it's been planned right from the start,
God is in control
of your future and your heart.

Your life has been a gift,
sent from heaven above,
And you've shown me what it means,
to not see, and yet love.

You're a sister, friend an example.
to more than just me.
Your influence is amazing,
Reaching far into eternity.

You're an invaluable treasure,
with Character all can see,
I could trade you with no other,
You mean so much to me.

So believe me when I say,
I love you with all my heart.
You've always been a good sister,
right from the start.

I believe God has great things in store,
for you and for me.
So, lets trust Him together,
and know that the Best is yet to be!


Happy Birthday Yvonne:)



What keeps you busy?

Post your comments, and let me know what keeps you busy? What is the hardest thing you have ever done? What inspires you? What is your passion? I can't wait to hear your comments!

I've Been Reading.....

Recently, I've been reading "Start Here" by Alex and Brett Harris. It has been very encouraging to read, and has really inspired me to do Hard things for God no matter what the cost. Here are some of my favorite excerpts from the book, I would highly recdommend that you read "Start Here" if you haven't read it before.

"If we say that we want to do hard things for God, and are not satisfied with pursuing 
excellence where he has placed us, we are really desiring glory for ourselves not God. 
Start right where you are! With a new attitude and a new heart and an open mind to how 
the everyday hard things you do right now will lead you to the next step! 

How to start! 

1. What do I like to do?  It is likely that God is calling you to take the next step in what 
your already doing. The gifts, talents, and interests God has given you are clues to what 
God is calling you to do.
2. Who can help me think this through? Prov20:29 your parents, older siblings, teachers, pastors, and mentors, are there to help you on the way.
Seek the advice of others as you pursue God's calling.
3. Would this conflict with the God given obligationsI have?
Our main focus in this time of life, is to prepare for marriage, work, family, service to others, leadership, and ministry. You should ask, will this help me prepare for adulthood? Say yes to preparation, and no to distraction.
4. What if I just want to join other people in what they are doing?
We are often called to do hard things as part of a family team. We are all part of someone else's project. Gods.
5. Do small hard things really count? Of course, small doesn't always mean easy. We should always do what is right even if it is insignificant. Everything can be done for Gods glory. You must ask yourself what ultimately counts? Me or God?Galations 6:9dont despise the day of small things. Neither fame nor obscurity is the goal, the goal is obedience to God effectiveness in what he calls us to do, & a heart the glorifies Him always. 
6. I know God wants me to something with this idea, but I'm not ready right now, what can I do to get ready? Don't make excuses. don't be afraid. 
Realize that in order to have a vision for changing the future, you will have to change yourself first. Start with yourself right where you are, and prepare for God's big plans by preparing yourself!

Don't Ever Stop Learning!

 Hello friends,

Here are some quotes and thoughts for the new year!
As I think about 2013, I am a little uncertain as to what this year will hold!
I know God will bring many new opportunities for me to endeavor in His work as I continue to grow in my relationship with God. What I can see this year are many new opportunities to Trust God, and keep my focus upon Him in the midst of great difficulty.

This is an excerpt from a book I read recently!  It really challenged me to review my impact on people, and focus on making a difference for God! I hope you enjoy reading it!

You must be continually learning from someone else who knows more than you do! You must be  continually passing information on to others! Discipling is a wonderful stretching experience! Life is not a meeting, it's a relationship! There are two kinds of personalities in the world and you are one of them! When you walk into a room your attitude says either "here I am" or " there you are" ! Which one are you? As a person, your eternity oriented task is, to affect others, and move them to God! 
Your life long task whether single or married is to influence everyone you can, by whatever means you can, to help them become precious treasures in God's sight!
Your public life should flow out of your private life! Be known to be a leader among people, by your appearance and your actions! Look quality, and think quality, talk quality, and expose yourself to quality, in entertainment and social life! Discipline yourself to bring every thought captive always! Don't get insensitive, don't get used to garbage. What goes in will come out, and pretty soon others will smell it! 

"Trust in The Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thy own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes, fear The Lord and 
depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel and marrow to thy bones, honor the lord with thy substance, and with the first fruits of all thine increase. So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine" Proverbs3:5-10

Here is a poem that always challenges me at the end of every year to ask myself what big things did I do for God this year? It is taken form Frank Bettger's book How I Raised Myself From Filure to Sucess on Selling. I hope this poem inspires you to continue strong for God this year and take the opportunities He gives you!

Victory:

You are the man who used to boast
That you’d achieve the uttermost,
Some day.

You merely wished a show,
To demonstrate how much you know
And prove the distance you can go…

Another year we’ve just passed through.
What new ideas came to you?
How many big things did you do?

Time…left twelve fresh months in your care
How many of them did you share
With opportunity and dare?

Again, we do not find you on the list of Makers Good.
Explain the fact!
Ah No, ’twas not the chance you lacked!
As usual - you failed to act!

Happy New Year!





Happy New year, and Welcome to all of my followers!
2012 was a great year for me as a person, as I discovered more about God, and myself.  Here are photos and comments of some my "great achievements" last year! 
 My family and I at the Statue of Liberty !
It was so fun to be able to Bicycle again this summer!
It was so wonderful to go to the Vision Forum Food Conference in July!

We were blessed to sing selections form Handel's Messiah with some dear friends!
We had a beautiful fall this year! This is one of my favorite photos of the season!
We enjoyed our time at the Washington Mother Daughter Tea in October!
It was wonderful to be at the Bible  Bee again this year, and cheer on all the contestants!
I was so excited for my friends from Oregon who did so well in the Competition!
God is so good to me!

The biggest blessing for me this year was being able to help out with our local Bible Bee, and then go with my family to Volonteer at the National Bible Bee in November! God taught me more about His bigger perspective on life, as I enjoyed meeting hundreds of Christians across the country in our numerous family trips this year! One perspective I had not seen before, was when I realized that there are thousands of Christians across the Country and around the world that have the same struggles, fears, challenges, and desires that I do! There are so many people struggling with the same thoughts and desires that I am struggling with, and it really helped me to focus on God's bigger picture, and see that I am not alone in this quest of life!





Our local Bible Bee Group! It was such a fun experience to help make the group a success! Helping out almost made up for the fact that I couldn't compete this year(:
  At a beautiful resort in Colorado!
My family and I at the beach!