Sunday, August 10, 2014

Ellisen - Coming Soon

October brings yet another new member into our ever growing family. My sister, Emily, is going to make her first contribution to the grandchildren gaggle that congregate at my parents.
This week I had the pleasure of capturing on camera this exciting time in her life. A beautiful mommy to be and such a cute baby belly! We are all so looking forward to meeting little Ellisen.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

It's Just a Matter of Opinion

Most of you know that I am a reader and literature enthusiast. More than that…. I am a classic literature enthusiast, there is a great distinction there. Trust me, choosing my major in English was not because I felt it would be the most practical or lucrative degree in the world. Rather I felt I could not choose anything else because that is what I loved.

When life gets busy sometimes it is easy to neglect those friends on shelves. Oftentimes the Bible will be the only book I read throughout the day, I am sorry to say that I have done so for weeks at a time in the last few years. (Although, next to “what would Jesus do” I do keep in mind, “what would Jane do” and therefore do not go very long without picking up Pride and Prejudice or one of her other magnificent works.)

However, since my conquering Les Miserables I have been going through an amazing enlightenment in regards to my reading, this world we live in, the habits we keep, the compromises we make etc. Can you learn all that from an irrelevant book written hundreds of years ago? Oh yes, you can.

And so I have gone into something of a reading frenzy… well as frenzied as one can get in the midst of all the other necessities of life (and yes, watching an episode of some mystery in the evening with my parents is one of those necessities). But not just any books. I have decided to ban modern literature for a time, maybe forever. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mean to be bashing any of you Harry Potter or Twilight lovers. I have had my fair share of enjoyment from a Nicholas Sparks novel myself. But those go only so far as to entertain. If you want something deeper, I am afraid you will have to go a century back to find it.

The reason why I love reading is not merely for the sake of entertainment, I want to be inspired, I want to be challenged, I want to be enlightened, and yes, I even want to be convicted. The morals that existed in societies of the past are so far above the societal norms of today, and it inevitably comes across in the story.

I am appalled to discover how many classical works I have not read! But not for long, one by one I will make friends with the great characters penned by great authors, both the obscure and the renowned.

I recently read several books by E.D.E.N Southworth, which I highly recommend. Such a book would be stuck in the religious category and rarely read in today’s society. But when she wrote it, it was common belief, common thought, common values. Oh how far we have fallen!

Here is a brief quote that demonstrates the faith strewn throughout the book which sits juxtaposed to the world we live in now. The character quotes, “I do love to live in an atmosphere of Christianity, and I hate to live out of it… [those individuals] were such irredeemable atheists. There was never a visit to church, never a prayer, never a grace, never a chapter from the Bible, never any sort of acknowledgement of their creator, never the slightest regard to His laws.” (from Self- Raised).

The character laments a hedonist acquaintance. But is her description not consistent with our society on a whole? Is she not speaking of books written today, movies, music, television, news, the work place, the schools…. Everywhere.

And so, this quote struck a nerve within me as I looked at the vast difference between the two societies. Yes, the ones of the past have always been imperfect, yet the Western world has never overlooked God so much as we do now. It is always refreshing to make friends with people who are like minded – even if those friends are old authors and the characters they create.  

Monday, August 4, 2014

Where I've Been

The fact that I haven’t blogged has been hanging over my head for weeks. Not for anybody’s sake but my own. I love the self inflicted pressure I have had with writing regularly… and the fact that I have been slacking makes me disappointed in myself. After all, in my heart I am a writer, and though I will likely never make a buck from my ramblings, it is important for me to let the inspiration of the moment flow.

I have allowed another inspiration take over and snatch much of my free time recently. As I have been interested in photography since I was a teenager, being blessed by the apprenticeship of Rebecca at Fresh From God Photography is an incredible opportunity that I am taking full advantage of. In the last few months I have been able to practice, learn, and study photography in a new way which has been invaluable.

I initially had intended on doing a post for each of these separate shoots, but as the time is getting away from me, I am just going to share a few of my favorites. And so here we have a compilation of many wonderful moments in life involving marriage, children, and the happy expectation of a baby.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

July Recap

I feel as if summer were quickly fading away. School starts up here on Monday, which doesn’t impact me at all except to give me that sad realization that summer is quickly waning. It is silly to ponder though, because it is the first of August and a bright beautiful summer day outside. July flew by in much the same manner as June. Busy.

-   Cory is still working in Mammoth (hopefully for only a few more weeks yay!) and so I have still been spending my midweek at my parents house. We have developed quite a jolly little routine. Here is how our days go:
     -Coffee time before work
     -Coffee time after work and working out
     -We sit on my parent’s bed and sing along with my dad and his guitar just like we did when we were kids. “Cripple Creek” is a daily must, of course.
     -We, all four of us, lay on my parents bed to watch a mystery of our choice (sometimes with oil in our    mouths as oil pulling has been a new trend of mine, and sometimes with oil on our faces as oil cleansing is also very popular in our household right now, but more on those fun remedies later).
      Yes, it has been a fun season being a kid again.

-   Despite all of the activities that have kept us super busy, we made three day trips down to the beach. According to my dad’s philosophy, it is a discipline to take a day off from routine and work and go down to the beach. And so we have been very disciplined this month.

-   Cory and I attended his brother’s quiet little wedding ceremony and so welcomed a new member into our family.

-   I was second shooter at my second wedding with Fresh From God Photography. I felt less nervous this time and more comfortable with what I was doing. It was an amazing venue and wonderful experience.

-   I have spent the month with a lot to think about in regards to plans for the future. God has opened up several amazing opportunities that we are pursuing and just waiting for him to guide us by opening and shutting those doors according to his perfect plan for our life. But whatever the future holds for us, I am enjoying the ride tremendously and learning from the manifold experiences He is bringing my way.

And so, bring on August. I have a feeling it is going to be an exciting month.

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