Open Letters: A Link Up

Thursday, April 28, 2016

I'm joining Julie of A Hopeful Hood to kick off her brand new link up. The main goal of this one (which will be held on the last Thursday of every month) is to give bloggers a chance to get to know and support one another by sharing posts featuring open letters.

Your letters can be anything you want them to be. They can be addressed to someone you know, love, and appreciate. They can feature your thoughts on some current events issue. They could even be sent to your teller at the bank or that stranger you saw when you were out grabbing coffee. Whatever the case, write them, post them, and then link them up!

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Dear Sweet Old Couple,
You don't know it, but you pretty much made my Mom's day when we were all out shopping yesterday. We saw you hunting for a parking spot and the way you both reacted when my Mom offered you ours was something that kept us smiling all the way home. May something as simple as a good parking spot bring me as much joy as it brought the two of you!

Dear Summer,
I'm starting to really wonder what you're going to hold this year. I expect you to be unlike any summer I've ever known and if I'm honest, I'm not sure how to feel about that. I'm looking forward to the best bits and trusting God with the rest. There's no room for disappointment because whatever you hold passed through His hands. I hope I'm ready!

Dear Sister of Mine,
You are going to be 18 in just THREE days!!!! I'm stoked and shocked and sooo many other feelings all at the same time. I saw a little girl wearing an oversized t-shirt as a dress the other day. She was dancing and hopping and "sweeping" the sidewalk without a care in the world. From a distance, she looked just like you when you were that size. As I watched her, I went right back to the days when you were that little girl. Those were sweet days and somehow, they ebbed and flowed and brought us all to where we are today. Days are like that. They turn into years before we know it and we nearly forget them until something as simple as a little girl reminds us. 18 is almost here. I know there is so much going on. You are brave and thoughtful and determined. My advice to you is this: In the years to come, the best and most important thing you can do is to put God first. Cling to Him. Cling to His Word. And make sure that your hope is in Him. Thanks for being that little girl and growing into the young woman that you continue to become. I love you!

* * * * *

Now it's your turn!

The Rules Are Simple:

1. Add a link to any post in the form of a letter.
2. Comment on the post right before yours.
3. Link back to your hosts.

The whole point of this link-up is to form community and meet some new bloggers, so don't drop your link and run! Any unrelated posts will be removed from the link-up.

 Julie is currently looking for future co-hosts! Be sure to drop her an email and let her know if you are interested.

It's Been A While

Monday, April 25, 2016

April 20, 2016

We bloggers say it often, but we say it because it happens and we really are sorry. Well, sort of. I'll say it now: I'm sorry for disappearing and not giving you a heads up on the serious break in my posting schedule. It wasn't planned. I had no idea how long it was going to last. Life over the last few weeks was such that I haven't spent any time on blogging.

Since you last heard from me, a lot has been going on.

I've packed up two maxed out mini van loads and one pick up truck load of stuff from our other house. I've sorted and cleaned and done some major yard work. I've shared the news with those closest to me that we are officially working on putting our house in the town we've called "home" for the last 20 years on the market. The reality that our ties with that town will be broken once that house sells has really started to sink in. (Yes, yes, we can still visit. But once the house sells, that part of our live's will be history.) That's part of why I haven't been here.

I've also been soaking up some serious sun while writing up a book club style literature course for middle schoolers that I plan to teach in the fall. And finishing up Gone With The Wind. And reading the latest Mary Higgins Clark. All while sipping my favorite toasted marshmallow iced lattes. If I'm honest, this time in the sun has kind of taken the place of blogging.

I've been heading to the basketball court to shoot hoops with my brother on the nights when we have nowhere to be after dinner. Okay, so this has only just begun, but I hope it happens A LOT more often!

I've spent a good chunk of time each morning reading the Bible and writing in my journal. And visiting with my Mom as we plan out what needs doing and who has to be where and what we need to get done. And Prince. He was one of my Mom's favorites and with his recent death, we've learned A LOT about him. He was so young and so gifted and I had no idea just how much my Mom appreciated his music.

My sister and I have tried to squeeze in trips to the library and to the park and have had plenty of chats just as one of us happens to be trying to go to sleep. We've shared car rides to her new mother's helper job and swapped babysitting stories. On the drive back, I've blasted my music because that's what I do when I'm in the car alone.

Like I said, a lot has been going on. It's been fantastic and that might just be why I'm only sort of sorry that I haven't been here.

What have YOU been up to?

Before I sign off, I'd like to invite you to join Julie and I for her very first Open Letters link up THIS THURSDAY! Click here to learn more and be sure to come back on Thursday to share the link to your post!

Follow Me To Joy Because Grace

Thursday, April 07, 2016

April 7, 2016

When Kara put the word out that she was looking for some guest posters, I sent her an email right away. She suggested a topic and I knew it would be an easy one for me to write about...The post went live yesterday. I'd love for you to follow me over to her blog!

You can view my post by clicking HERE

Currently: April 2016

Wednesday, April 06, 2016

April 7, 2016

I'm going to update this post with a current picture later, but for now, I wanted to check in! I'm back at our other house today and will be here off and on over the next who knows how long. There's work to be done around this place.

If I'm honest, a lot of it disgusts me. It's not my story to tell, so I'll spare you (and the one the story belongs to) and just tell you that for all the ick, I'm really super excited for the parts that involve digging my fingers into my garden spots. I'm also pretty eager to walk my old routes and see the familiar faces that I've missed over the last seven months. 

Aside from cleaning, working in the yard, doing a lot of driving, and praying my heart out, I'm currently...

Making: The next edition of Journey Together. It's going to be late this month, but I'll get it finished and I'll be sure to let you know when I do!  

Wishlisting: A good pair of boots. Spring is the time of year when I don't like wearing socks or tights with my flats like I do in the winter, but then it's also way too cold for sandals. I think boots will keep my feet warm and my socks covered. If it's not boots, then I'm looking for some kind of shoe that will get the job done. What do you wear on your feet when the weather is chilly and damp?  

Cleaning: EVERYTHING. I wanted to leave The Queen's Cottage spic-and-span and I did. I've just finished a deep clean on the bathroom at this house. Next up is bleaching the kitchen sink. 

Posting: things that I think will encourage, inspire, and delight you guys. I'm focusing on my facebook page, so you can expect to hear more about that at some point. In the meantime, have you liked it yet? 

Tasting: Well, I just got over being sick. Soooo, I'm kind of in the mood for everything. Tonight we're having my Grandma's spaghetti and meatballs with garlic bread and caesar salad. This 
weekend, I'll probably give into my chocolate chip cookie craving and bake a batch of my favorites.

I'm linking up with Jenna and Anne and I'll be back with a picture eventually! Have a great day, friends! And remember....Every cloud has a silver lining. The sun is shining even when you can't see it. And God's best is the best. 

Happy Wednesday!

What are you up to?