Monday, December 30, 2013

Baby Bradley...

 he's one of my favorite little men right now. =)
 check out those chubby little cheeks.
they really are the last word in cheeks.
 isn't he a cutie?

babies are one of my favorite things in life and I'm so thankful for these little people that I get to love on!


Saturday, December 28, 2013


It's hard for me to blog right now.
I feel like there's so much I want to write, and say, and share, and discuss, and simply not enough time to format everything into an understandable post.
God has been rocking my world lately by the incredible preaching at my church. Every service I come home and think "I HAVE to post about this!" And then the following day is full of company/packing/cooking along with my regular job, working as my father's secretary, and suddenly before I know it...I've fallen into bed and one of the last thoughts before drifting off to sleep approx 1 1/2 minutes after my head hits the pillow, is "Ah-I never posted that!"
The quote below describes so well how I've been feeling on all of this lately:

what our preacher says all the time. and its so true
 My pastor uses this quote all the time and it is so true. Every single service I come away having learned
new truth from the Word of God. Every single time God works on my broken heart, repairing and 
changing and healing. (note: when I say "broken heart", I don't mean it by the world's standard of a 
broken heart. I mean it as a heart that is always in need of more of Jesus and His grace, love, and
I've been so blessed-I honestly feel at times like I've grown more spiritually in the past year and a half...
than I have in my whole Christian life before that. God has been so faithful and even though the 
sanctification process is rough at times, I couldn't wish to be anywhere else than where I am right
now. Broken and messed up...but in the place where healing and truth abounds! 

Currently I'm getting ready to leave for a 2 1/2 month tour with my family. I'll have more time to wade 
through all of the above and give y'all several in-depth posts on the month!

In the meantime let me just challenge you to choose broken-ness and be willing for God to heal and 
change you and fill you with more of HIM!


Saturday, December 21, 2013

In Which I Speak Once Again!

{curling hair last weekend in prep for the LACP @ church}

I have so much to write but sadly I just have a minute here so all of my "blog-post-pile-ups-in-the- brain" will have to wait for later.

My life lately has been wonderful and crazy.
This year's Christmas Play was the most amazing yet. I seriously have to pinch myself at times to make sure that I really am getting to be a part of the production and the fabulous church/people that are behind it. I'm so blessed by them!

The last three weeks were filled with sewing, rehearsals, company, six showings of the play, more company, and sickness. The last time I posted (a week ago tonight) I was beginning to get a sore throat. By Sunday morning I couldn't sing and couldn't talk normally. (thank goodness for pre-recorded lines!) By Sunday night my voice was almost gone. And Monday morning I woke up with absolutely nothing more than a faint whisper. That calamity lasted until Wednesday when my voice finally and slowing began to return. As my sister so kindly put it "Now you sound like a smoker!" Raspy, deep..all that jazz. So much fun.


Those of you who know me even slightly well know that talking is my strength and being quiet is my weakness. Or else talking is my weakness? Depending on how you define overly talkative people. =) I am one of those.
 Hence those two days of no talking nearly drove me crazy. Especially since it just so happened that our very dear friends from Mississippi were visiting and when we are with them we all talk at the same time and have such a party...and I had to sit and participate in everything in SILENCE. oh the joy.
I am now thankful in a whole new way for the mere ability to SPEAK! It's awesome to be able to join in conversation once again!

{here's a little sneak peak picture of a few of us last weekend. A full LACP recap/review coming next week to the family blog! Stay tuned!}

Now that the play is over, Christmas is right around the corner and I am anticipating the family time and traditions, yummy food, cousins coming from out-of-state, and celebrating, all together, the true reason for the season, Jesus Christ, and all He has done!
In the midst of all that, we're also getting ready to leave on tour. But I'm trying not to think about that---wanting to savor these last home moments while I have them!


Saturday, December 14, 2013

1880's LACP Costumes

{above: snapping a selfie in the new dress and stage makeup. I'm having a blast trying out new french braid updos and doing stage makeup on myself. Of course this isn't my normal look, but its fun to pile up the makeup just for something different. =)}
This is Wednesday's promised post, just posted on Saturday, instead of Wednesday. 
I'm sorry, and welcome to my world. =)
All of this week has been crazy; I've been doing a million things whilst being partly sick, and blogging has been the last thing I've had time for.
Hence here I finally am, sitting in one of the little dressing rooms at my church, posting in between my last scenes for the night. 
Hey, it works. =) 
One of the finished maid outfits. 
Not my favorite thing to sew (or wear!), but I do love how they turned out. 
This project was last minute, and super duper fun. 
I had to sew a Civil War era, little girl's formal party dress for my younger sister.
I had looked all over the place, and couldn't find anything that was even close.
Very last minute my pastor's wife mentioned that she had a bunch of old bridesmaid dresses that I could look through for options.
I found this one (above) and instantly saw endless possibilities.
I took in all of the seams multiple times.
(this was how it went: take in seams. sister tries it on.too big. I sew in seams again. sister tries it on again. its still too big. etc etc....)
Then I took the long skirt and just went to town with trying my hand at sewing pickups/ruching.
I'd always wanted to try this on something and this was the perfect project.
Ta Da!
Very possibly one of my favorite alteration projects to date.
Then I took an old pair of her flats, which have stains and rips etc...
....and covered them with extra lining fabric (that I had cut off of the dress when I shortened it) and lace.
The sash was way too big so I cut it in half and used half of it to make a new sash for the dress.
The other half of the sash I used for a matching hairbow for her. =)
My mother made her a pair of adorable lacy bloomers.
And she honestly looks like she just stepped out of the time period---SO FUN!
(complete pictures of us in full outfits, coming later on next week)
If you're able, come out for our last two showings tomorrow, @ 11am & 5pm! Can't believe this whole production is so close to done!
Anyway, got to run---the scene before my last scene is going right now, so I've got to get up there in time! =)


Monday, December 9, 2013

Report from the Seamstress

{Above picture: typical sight last week.
fabric, pattern pieces, pins, scissors, measuring tape, and misc scattered all over. In the middle of the picture resides my classy mug of yummy Tim Hortons coffee. 
*thank-you to the sweet people who gifted us that big tub of Tim Hortons when we were in Canada this summer! Its been keeping me alive!=)
Last week it was mostly me and my coffee and my sewing machine during the days, with Celtic Thunder Christmas music keeping us company...and rehearsals every night @ church. 

So I'm sorry for the lack of anything on here this past week. It has been a crazy seven days;
however, I am so thrilled to report that the sewing is DONE and I am back to sanity. =)
For some reason deadlines make me more prone to mistakes. 
{why am I like this?}
Having a Friday deadline with all the sewing projects, seemed to just be inviting my seam ripper to the party. =/ Unfortunately that item was busy busy busy all week, as well as my sewing machine. Agh! How I hate ripping out seams!
By Thursday night I knew sickness was just around the corner if I didn't take care of myself. Thankfully I got all finished on Friday and missed the sick-in-bed kind of sickness that I thought might be coming, and instead just got the "well-enough-to-be-out-of-bed-but-wish-to-be-in-bed" kind. =) In spite of not being totally up to par, I am super thankful that I'm able to be up and doing things. This would be the worst time of year to be sick, for sure, with all the rehearsals/performances and everything going this week!
And speaking of thankfulness...I'm super thankful for the cousins that came all the way from NY to visit over Thanksgiving! Lovely times we had and I'm so grateful for family! We made so many fun memories-keep an eye on the family blog, as my sis will be posting pictures from Thanksgiving weekend, on there soon!
Come back tomorrow or Wednesday for pictures of the projects I sewed! =)

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

2013 Live Animal Christmas Play!

Y'all may remember me talking about this quite a bit last year, here, here, and here.
It does not seem like a year ago but indeed it is, because once again I am in the thick of getting ready for this production.
The blog will probably be a little silent this week, as nearly every spare moment is being spent at my sewing machine sewing costumes, or at church, in rehearsals.
I wanted to take a quick minute here this morning though to invite y'all to come to the play!
It is free and open to the public.
{doesn't get any better than that, huh?}
There are approx 200 actors in the play.
And live animals. in the church. on the stage. 
the baby calves reside in the baptistry. =)
I'm telling ya, you want to come see it for yourself. =)
Showing information is on the flyer below. Please go ahead and use the tab at the bottom of the post to share this on facebook, twitter, google plus...whatever works for you. 
I'm spreading the word here! Last year we had to turn people away but this year an extra showing has been added so there will be extra room, which means we'd love it if more people came.

A little more info from our pastor.. (with my notes added in italics =))
A Southeast Iowa Christmas Tradition

"A stunning theatrical production!"

We cordially invite you to celebrate Christmas with us in a dramatic way. The
2013 production will show Saturday December 14, 2013 at 11AM2PM and 5PM and
Sunday December 15, 2013 11AM & 5PM.  All Showings are a gift to you and
complety free of charge!  DETAILED INFORMATION BELOW...

"Experience the true story of Christmas come to life !"

*Animals Up Close!
You will enjoy, Camels, Reindeer, Llama, Sheep, Goats, Cows, Donkeys,
Red Tail Hawk, Horses, Dogs, a fat pig and much more, in the sanctuary!  You will have an
opportunity to get up close to many wonderful animals! The kids are sure to enjoy!

*Stirring Music!
The show includes over eight live musical specials as well as scores of
Musical Productions that will stir the Christmas Spirit within you. 

*The Bible Story in Compelling Drama!
The compelling dramatic journey will take you from a marketplace in
Nazareth to
a manger in Bethlehem where baby Jesus is born. Watch as King Herod, the
Roman Soldiers and many Jews try to destroy the Messiah.  The production
finishes with Jesus' glorious resurrection.

*Great Seating Close to all the Action!
The Auditorium is large enough to host such an event but small enough to be
close to all the action.  You will feel like you have taken a journey
right in the Christmas Story! Ah, the sights, the smells, the sounds of Christmas!

*Special Effects!
The show uses many professional special effects that is sure to make your
experience exciting!

*Hot Chocolate, Popcorn and Candy Canes!
As you enter the building, enjoy delicious christmas refreshments!
is free of charge. Merry Christmas!
{my mother and brothers will be serving you all these yummy things...=)}

*The purpose of the play!
John 3:16-17
"For God so loved the world, that he gave His only begotten
Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world
through Him might be saved."

- We are not professionals. This is a homemade church play. All actors and
workers are church members who have sacrificially volunteered their time.
{this is hands-down the most amazing thing about the play. long before we ever attended Marion Avenue Baptist Church, we were blessed and impacted each year by this play. Now that we actually attend and are involved..we have been able to see and be a part everything that goes into pulling this off. And it is incredible. Multiple church members who use their vacation time for the year to take off of work these two weeks before the play and work at the church. People who work so hard and push themselves to be as professional as possible, in every aspect.  It is a beautiful example of the body of Christ working together and I just thank the Lord that my family gets to experience it!}

- All Showings are free of charge.
{in other have no excuse for not coming =)}

- You do not need tickets to attend.

- Seating is given on a first come, first served basis.
{come early for a good seat!}

- The 2PM show on Saturday is reserved for large groups -
email with your group reservation.

- The show is 2 hours from start to finish.

Located at:
Marion Avenue Baptist Church
215 South Marion Avenue Washignton, Iowa 52353

*note-the dates on the promo are the 2012 dates, not this year's dates!

Please come and join us?!

more updates to come later on this week!