Phone Photo Friday




Lucy loves it when I’m working from home so she can sit on my lap and keep my legs warm.

Have a happy weekend!

Bathroom Renovation Stage 3


Demo has begun! This week Jason started tearing down the wall and door frame around the toilet closet and the wall behind the former sink. It’s a dusty mess—which makes doing laundry interesting—but it’s so nice to see major progress!




What’s next: clean up the debris, move the air vent in the floor (over about a foot) and then build the new walls!

In case you missed it:
Bathroom Renovation Stage 1
Bathroom Renovation Stage 2

Wise Words



“POOR is a state of mind. BROKE is…’I’m just passing through’.” — Dave Ramsey

I’ve also heard Dave say, “BROKE can be fixed.”


Erie Trip – Part 3 (Bonus)


Some people like to take pictures with funny mustaches. The A-team likes to entertain ourselves on road trips with taking funny pictures in “chinaman glasses” (leftover from a theme party for The Office).


“Worry makes you sound like an atheist and look like a coward.”



Worry is self-focused, self-centered; it’s about self-preservation. It’s an obvious lack of trust in God’s provision, his Word, his truth. As a follower of Christ, if you’ve accepted Christ into your life, worry is a sign that you are too full of self. Jesus requires us to die to self.

“He must become greater; I must become less.”  John 3:30
“To live is Christ and to die is gain.” Philippians 1:21

Worry opposes hope. Jesus is hope. It makes sense for those without Christ’s power to worry. Living with the fruit of the Spirit is often irrational, illogical and unnatural. To be filled with the Spirit of God is to be exude HIS love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control. It’s not something we can manufacture. We can’t just try harder. We need more of Him and less of us. To have peace and faith and joy in the midst of a storm or facing an unknown is only possible through the Spirit,

Christ in you is the hope of glory! Colossians 1:27
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6

If we choose to worry and focus inward, we make the enemy’s job so easy. He doesn’t even have to do ANYTHING. We’re choosing our human nature, rejecting all of the hope, faith, and freedom that Christ died for. Jesus didn’t die just for us to be able to go to heaven when we die. He was beaten and crushed for us to have life ABUNDANT now, not just after we die. He died for us to have life and forgiveness and freedom from iniquities and emotional & physical healing NOW. Don’t cheapen what He did by only accepting part of His gift.

“The thief comes to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” John 10:10
He was pierced for our transgressions [all Christians believe that], he was crushed for our iniquities [simply dying would have saved us from our sins], by his wounds we are healed [most Christians don’t believe this] Isaiah 53:5

Worry makes you look like a coward because you act as if you are powerless. If you know Christ, if you know his Word, you should know the power of the Living God and the authority we have through Jesus. Worry makes you look like an atheist. When you worry, you look just the rest of the world; like you believe there is no God, like there is no reason to have hope for things unseen. Christians, we should know better!

“Hope that is seen is no hope at all.” Romans 8:24
“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1

On August 9th I twittered the title of this post, a quote from Pastor Lindell from his sermon on “The Test of Trust” about Abraham. Someone I don’t know, @LilHappyHeathen, replied “How are atheists worried?” I never had a chance to respond because I always forget to check my twitter responses. I hope this clarifies. It’s not that atheists are worried, it’s that Christians who worry are denying God. It’s not circular.

key: direct quotes, paraphrase, [interjections]

If you want to find the Lindell Cooley’s podcast from 8/9/09 on trust and worry, try this link to subscribe through iTunes. If that doesn’t work, search for Lindell Cooley podcast in iTunes.

Phone Photo Friday




From the backseat of the Vibe about 7 hours into our drive home on Monday

Erie Trip – Part 2


Day 3 – Visited my aunt, uncle and cousins in the morning (didn’t get any pics), had lunch at Imperial China Buffet, went shopping (tax free clothes baby!), Ginger and I played with a pug puppy at the mall, went to dinner at the home of Jason’s bro Steve and wife Char, and finally met their almost-1-year-old little dude Aiden, then we all fell in love with him and his goofy laugh



Day 4 – I had the smile breakfast at Eat’n Park were Jason used worked as a cook and my friends hung out every Friday night for a year in high school; took advantage of the sunshine and when down to the peninsula for a walk—my favorite location in Erie; reminisced about one of our first dates when we watched the sunset and talked about the wonders of God; walked toward the place Jason proposed to me 7.5 years ago; went to Aiden’s 1st birthday party; watched him get overwhelmed with gifts and confused by the singing followed by giant cake; had dinner at O’Charley’s (yes, a Nashville-based chain) with Dave and Emily; played Mexican Train for a couple of house and then fell asleep watching The Office




Day 5 – Breakfast at Tim Horton’s (a first for all of us Nashvillians) and then napped on-and-off thru a 10 hour drive home (including 4 stops)

Erie/Cincinnati Trip – Part 1


Since I have a lot of pictures to share from our vacation to visit family and friends last weekend, I thought I’d divide it up into a couple of posts.

Day 1 – drove to Cincinnati, OH to visit friends (not quite half-way to Erie, PA), saw some joker on a motorcycle, drank a grapefruit IZZE (yum!), ooohed over the beautiful fall trees in KY and OH, and awed over cute little 2-month-old Ben.



Day 2 – hung out with Ben and his mama in the morning (Jason was great with him!), saw more gorgeous trees on the drive, drove the rest of the way to Erie, saw snow as soon as we arrived, visited Jason’s Grandma and Aunt Linda’s cute boston terrier named Shakes, had dinner at Quaker Steak and Lube with our good friends Dave and Emily, and later hung out at their home watching funny videos.






What Erie Gave to Me



Leading up to our trip last weekend to Erie, PA—the city where I did most of my growing up, from age 8 to 20—I was reflecting on some of the things I got through my time in the Flagship City, the town from That Thing You Do:

• a great foundation in Christ through a church that produced a super fun children’s church by Captain Bill and a vibrant youth group lead by Pastor Derek

• my now husband Jason, who I met at said youth group when I was 14 and married at that church 4 years later (yep, I was that young. nope, no fundamentalist arranged marraige. haha!)

• a great appreciation for warm weather and sunny days (due to Erie’s lack…)

• many breath-taking sunsets over Lake Erie

• snow driving skills that I may or may not ever need to use again

• lots of sweet friends through the years, a few who have managed to keep in touch

• a quality public school education

• a tolerance for swimming in 76º water on an 80º day

• summers and holidays spent with my mom’s parents and extended family

• summer walks on the beach of Presque Isle (hands down my favorite place in Erie) and the spot at beach 7 where Jason proposed

• a lasting love for Connie’s turtle ice cream, Smith’s hot dogs, Heinz ketsup, Troyer Farms chips, Wegmans grocery store, and Romolo sponge candy

Tomorrow I’ll share my pictures and a recount of our trip.

Packing Clothes for 5 Days


This past weekend my husband, BIL, SIL and I went on a 5-day vacation to Erie, PA stopping half-way to stay overnight in Cincinnati, OH. As I was planning what clothing to pack, I thought it would be fun to share my method of mixing and matching clothing in order to pack as light as possible. Let me start off my saying a few things: 1. I am definitely no fashion expert, 2. I wear a lot of blue, green, brown and gray (I think this makes things easier), 3. I don’t iron my clothes. Now that I have those things off my chest, let’s go. Here’s the entire wardrobe for five days:


(2 pairs of pants, 5 shirts, 3 sweaters, 2 jackets, 2 pairs of shoes, 2 hats, 2 scarfs)

Day 1
Expected plans: 4.5 hour car ride, visiting friends with 1.5 month old baby, dinner & maybe shopping or sightseeing:


Comfy worn jeans, teal blue t-shirt, gray cable knit sweater, silver slip-on flats, gray striped scarf, black cap (optional)

Forecast: Hi 50º / Lo 41º Rainy


Day 2
Expected plans: 5 hour car ride (on to second location), visit hubby and BIL’s grandmother, dinner with friends, shopping


Dark jeans, gray keyhole t-shirt, green cashmere zip hoodie, brown wool cap, green suede casual shoes, long brown wool coat

Forecast: morning city Hi 51º; evening city Hi 48º / Lo 38º Rain 50% chance


Day 3
Expected plans: Visiting friends and family, shopping, sightseeing, dinner with hubby’s family at home of our other BIL and SIL and our 1 yr old nephew Aiden


Comfy worn jeans, green boat neck t-shirt, gray cable knit sweater, black fleece pullover, silver slip-on flats, gray striped scarf, black cap

Forecast: Hi 45º / Lo 39º Rain & show showers


Day 4
Expected plans: Church and out to lunch with friends, birthday party for our nephew with family, hang out with friends and/or sightseeing in the evening


Dark jeans, pink t-shirt under brown wool deep-v sweater, olive green jersey knit scarf, brown wool cap, green suede casual shoes, long brown wool coat

Forecast: Hi 50º / Lo 41º Sunny


Day 5
Expected plans: 9.5 hour car ride back home


Comfy worn jeans, light blue scoop neck t-shirt, green cashmere zip hoodie, gray striped scarf, silver slip-on flats, black cap