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2014 Reading Challenge

2014 Reading Challenge
stephanie has read 1 book toward her goal of 30 books.
Prayerful Bloggers

31 days of waiting – quotes

24th October 2014 || 31 days of waiting || 0 comments

Hooking you up with 5 of my favorite quotes about waiting. October is almost over and there are a few topics on “waiting” that I’ve been… um… waiting (ha!) to write, and those have been bouncing around in my head all month so it’ll take awhile to sit down and hammer them out… and right now I just don’t have time for that.


5 of my favorite quotes about waiting.

#1. “Until God opens the next door, praise him in the hallway.”
 Until God opens the next door, praise him in the hallway. //

#2. “Patience is not the ability to wait, but the ability to keep a good attitude while waiting.” ~ Joyce Meyer
Joyce Meyer quote about waiting //

#3. “I am sure that God keeps no one waiting unless He sees that it is good for him to wait.” ~C.S. Lewis {photo via una bella vita}
C. S. Lewis quote about waiting //

#4. “If we wait until we’re ready, we’ll be waiting for the rest of our lives.” ~Lemony Snicket
Lemony Snicket quote about waiting //

#5. “Wait for the Lord. Be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” ~Psalm 27:14
Psalm 27:14 //

Do you have any favorite quotes about waiting?

Linking up with Oh Hey Friday

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Etsy Gift Guide for your Super Girly Best Friends!

23rd October 2014 || everyday life || 1 comment

Etsy gift guide //

Hi everyone, Stephanie here.

The other day I charged my iPad mini. I know you’re probably like woah that’s so cool Stephanie tell me more. Here’s the thing. I never charge my iPad, and when I do I use it for like 3 things. I use it 47% for pinterest and 47% for scrolling through Etsy and like 6% for watching TV on the treadmill. So I was looking at all of these absolutely beautiful things on Etsy and I thought… you know, people need to know about these things. I need to speak up for the people of the world who are like me. The people who love sparkle and pink and beautiful girly things.

And you know… Christmas is almost next month. ALMOST.

Because I am SUCH A GOOD FRIEND (Gretchen Wieners quote right there) I put together this gift guide of things I found on Etsy that your super girly best friends (or babysitters, neighbors, secret pals, Stephanie Orefices….) would probably LOVE. AND you can feel good that you’re supporting small businesses. Win-win, am I right?

ONE // Personalized Ombre Phone Case (um hello cute little elephant AND it’s available in more colors)
TWO // Perpetual birthday calendar (this. is. so. brilliant!!! and CUTE!)
THREE // Pink Ombre Tassel Garland (yeah I’m all about the tassel these days.)
FOUR // She Leaves A Trail of Sparkle print (because duh. Sparkle everything!)
FIVE // Framed Sequin Art (I don’t know why this is so fascinating. It’s just sequins in a frame. but it’s PERFECT)
SIX // Pink & Gold Love cushion (this would TOTALLY match my bedroom, I am just saying…..)
SEVEN // Hello Lovely notepad (so sweet! Proof that stuff doesn’t have to be pink for me to love it!)
EIGHT // MacBook Pro / Air / iPad / ETC Sleeve (I have been looking for THIS EXACT THING for my iPad for like.. um.. EVER!)
NINE // Beyonce Coffee Mug (for those days when you might need a little push to keep going)
TEN // Tiny heart earrings (THEY ARE SO SMALL! AND CUTE! I WANT THEM!)
ELEVEN // Gold Sequin Letter (WHY does my name have 9 letters? This is absolutely brilliant. Sequins on everything, please)
TWELVE // Mint Green Colorblocked tote (this is so lovely! I love the color and the size)
THIRTEEN // T-shirt with mascara (THIS!!!!!!!!!!)
FOURTEEN // Initial & Name hoop (I LOOOOVE the initial and then the name in the front. This is absolutely adorable)
FIFTEEN // Casual Kicks Fashion Illustration Giclee Art Print (perfect)

The Etsy feed is dangerous. It’s like pinterest….. but takes you immediately to the product page to buy it. So dangerous!!! Now if you’ll excuse me I have to run to the mailbox to see if my prints from Whimsey and Wanderlust are waiting for me!

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31 days of waiting – don’t wait too long.

23rd October 2014 || 31 days of waiting || 5 comments


Yesterday I woke up and I had time to write a blog post.
But I didn’t.

and I came home from work and I had time to write a blog post.
But I didn’t.

Then I went to the mall and the grocery store and I had time to write a blog post.
But I didn’t.

and now I’m going to bed. I’m not even going to try and sneak this post in. I’m posting it bright and early in the morning.

Because time is precious and it slips through our fingers before we realize what’s happening. We live our lives with “I will later, I’ll have more energy later, more inspiration, more resources, more blah blah.” and then it doesn’t happen and suddenly we’ve run out of time.

So whatever it is that you’re waiting for – DO IT! NOW!

{and I’ll try to take my own advice and start mustering up the courage to tell the boy I like how I feel. I’ll let you know how it goes.}



31 days of waiting – the parking lot.

20th October 2014 || 31 days of waiting, faith. || 4 comments

Sierra Exif JPEG

The other day, I was riding with my friend somewhere. We were meeting at a parking lot.
I got there 10 minutes early. He was running 30 minutes late.

I figured I should make the most of waiting. I decided to read some of Holy Curiosity, but I like to read when I’m comfortable… laying in bed or sitting on a couch, in sweatpants, sipping either tea or coffee, with my hair thrown out of my face with no regard to how it might look. I was sitting on a curb.

It’s hard to get comfortable when we’re waiting for someone. At first I was going to say when we’re waiting for someTHING, but I really think there’s this uncomfortable aspect of waiting for a person. Maybe it’s just me, but have you ever noticed that when you’re waiting for someone to arrive, you look out your window more in ten minutes than you do in ten days? Even if the house is tidy or your shoes are on and you’re ready to go, you never want to get too comfortable when you’ll be interrupted.

There were a few months last year when my friends, single women, decided to buy houses. I remember talking to one of them and she said “it feels like I’m doing this so out of order. I was supposed to meet someone and get married and then buy a house.” She didn’t want to settle in too much because she was waiting to be interrupted. She didn’t want to establish herself alone because she was waiting for someone. I was so proud of her for being so brave, for getting a “write this in your address book in pen” address while she waited.

Every day I see my friends be so brave while they are waiting. I can’t write enough about the bravery of my friend Donna, who hasn’t been able to have a baby but believes in the God of miracles. She holds babies and celebrates her friends pregnancies, even while praying from the depths of her soul for a child. Another one of my friends also desires to be a mom and she took custody of her cousin’s 3-year-old daughter, going from an independent, single woman to a single mother of a child that looks nothing like her.

Sitting on that curb reading wasn’t comfortable and eventually I walked into the store. I realized Ernie’s birthday is soon and I should send him a greeting card so while I waited, I read birthday cards and laughed at the funny ones (like out loud, by myself… no shame). I picked one out and went back to the curb, where I spent time carefully choosing the words inside a card with two bunnies holding tiny mugs of coffee.

The point is – I don’t think we’re necessarily supposed to get COMFORTABLE. I think we are supposed to get BUSY. When we are DOING SOMETHING, there is less of a burden in waiting because our time isn’t measured by empty spaces of nothing but looking up from the book we’re reading on the curb every time a car drives by.

Eventually my friend showed up, and I hadn’t even realized that I’d been there waiting nearly an hour because I hadn’t sat checking the time on my phone every ten minutes. I decided that he knew my number and could call me when he arrived. In the same way, we serve a God who knows how to get ahold of us when the time is right, and he ALWAYS shows up on time. I think he’d rather find us laughing at cards in the store than sitting uncomfortably on the curb, getting crankier and crankier with each check of the time.


31 days of waiting – have you ever?

20th October 2014 || 31 days of waiting, music || 0 comments

Screen Shot 2014-10-20 at 7.21.55 PM

have you ever by stephanie orefice on Grooveshark

The year was 1998. I was 13.
Who even knows what idiot middle school boy I was in love with at the time. Probably Zac Hanson.

But this song.

I remember laying in bed and listening to these words over and over and over. and crying my heart out because… well, boys.

Today I was laying in my bed, texting two of my closest friends about the boy I like. Because homeboy is CONFUSING. The minute that a tear trickled down my face (which started a freaking downpour ugh) I remembered this song and I listened to it like the IDIOT THAT I AM. There I was, TWENTY NINE AND A HALF FREAKING YEARS OLD and crying about boys to the same song I did SIXTEEN FREAKING YEARS AGO.

and after I listened to like one verse of it I sat up and thought “I bet when I was 13 I didn’t imagine that I’d still be waiting.”

I tried to remember 13 year old Stephanie, the things I loved and hated and dreamed of happening… and all I could think of was I never expected to wait this long.

One of my friends, Denise, got married later in life. and one day I drove the 45 minutes to her house after I went on a date with a boy that was SUPPOSED TO BE PERFECT because he and I were passionate about the same things and he was cute and loved Jesus… but instead I spent FOUR HOURS walking around the zoo with a guy who wouldn’t even speak to me. Denise said something that I cling to.

She told me that I’m single because I’m single. I’m not single because I’m not smart enough or funny enough or tall enough or well dressed enough. I’m not single because I’m too loud or fat or excitable or sparkly. I’m single because I’m single, plain and simple.


I’m single because I’m waiting. Because I refuse to compromise or throw myself at any boy who gives me attention.

Then I had this thought.
This really awful thought.

WHAT IF, IN THIRTEEN MORE YEARS, I LOOK BACK ON 29 YEAR OLD STEPHANIE AND THINK “I bet when I was 29 I didn’t imagine that I’d still be waiting.”


I can’t really spin this to be some big freaking encouragement or thought-provoking post. All I can say is that this waiting stuff freaking blows sometimes.

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31 days of waiting – a song.

19th October 2014 || 31 days of waiting, faith., music || 0 comments

“We come with expectation…”

Like I wrote about earlier this month, waiting isn’t a passive thing.
When we wait for something, we say there is value in what we are waiting for, because if not wouldn’t we just move on with life?
When we wait, we are trusting that something will happen – maybe not the outcome we want, but something will resolve.

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18th October 2014 || music, reviews || 0 comments

I’m not participating in #blogtober, but I know people who are… today’s prompt is to share a secret, and I have just the song for all of you airing some of your dirty laundry.


Mary Lambert’s songs – not just Secrets – but her whole album, Heart On My Sleeve, are honest and raw and are the SOUND of sharing secrets. Sometimes you say “screw it all” and walk around telling people your secrets (the title track, “Secrets“) and sometimes you have a quiet, vulnerable moment of sharing a secret with someone (“When You Sleep,”) and sometimes it sounds like a still evening with your friends being open (“Monochromatic.“)

The collection of songs Mary Lambert has put together is appropriately titled “Heart On My Sleeve,” as her words are heartbreaking and open. I have listened to the song Secrets every morning while I’ve gotten ready for the day since I first downloaded the album (which you can do on iTunes or Amazon) but the song that BLEW ME AWAY was her cover of Rick Springfield’s Jessie’s Girl. One of my favorite artists, Teitur, does this cover of Great Balls of Fire that is haunting and quiet and he says “sounds different when you take it seriously, doesn’t it?” That applies to this song. Who knew that Jessie’s Girl could be a ballad for a broken heart, not just a sing-along anthem?


You can pick up Heart On My Sleeve from iTunes or Amazon.

In honor of today’s #blogtober prompt and having Secrets on repeat, here are a few of my secrets.

  • I am really insecure about my appearance, so much so that I shut down if people notice anything about me (not my clothes, but my actual self).
  • Every day is a battle with mental illness for me. I have OCD and depression, and it sucks.
  • I am so terrible with money. I don’t know where it goes. I have absolutely no idea what happens to my money. It just disappears.
  • When I was little, I wanted a bottle of Mr. Bubbles bubble bath because it came with a washcloth glove. My parents said no. So I stole the washcloth glove. I don’t think I’ve EVER admitted that.
  • Sometimes when I’m feeling really stressed out I drive in circles for hours.
  • I am terrible at learning by reading. I love to read books, but I cannot process difficult information without asking a person questions.
  • Talking about the weather is one of my favorite things to do, even though people usually think that’s left for shallow conversation.

Okay. Your turn! Share some secrets… even if you’re not participating in #blogtober!

I participated in the Mary Lambert Heart On My Sleeve album review program as a member of One2One Network. I was provided a free album to review but all opinions are my own.

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31 days of waiting – 5 more things i’m waiting for.

17th October 2014 || 31 days of waiting || 12 comments

This week in addition to my full-time job, I watched my pastors’ 4 children while they were out of town. I didn’t have the time or energy to blog and like I try to remind myself… that’s fine. I’d rather be living life than blogging about living life.


5 things I’m waiting for (in addition to last week’s!)

#1. experiencing a corn maze tomorrow. 

#2. falling back into my blogging routine. 
I weirdly missed it. It was so weird.

#3. My Birchbox
It seriously takes like 10 days to get here after they’ve e-mailed me saying it’s on the way.. I am so ready to have it RIGHT NOW!

#4. Figuring out a day to buy a plane ticket to Nashville.
I miss the Halters so bad, and it’s barely been a month since I left. Time to go back.

#5. My cousin’s baby’s dedication.
Mostly because my stepmom is making LUMPIA! LUMPIA IS THE BEST!


YOUR TURN! What are you waiting for?


31 days of waiting – waiting for affirmation

13th October 2014 || 31 days of waiting, faith. || 2 comments

31 days of waiting // waiting for affirmation //
Technically this is now 30 days of waiting since I missed yesterday. I will go forth on grace alone. That’s a song, not an overdramatic declaration of my missing a post on the busiest day of my week.

I don’t really write a whole lot about my job, but now would be a good moment to. I’m a youth/kids pastor. I have started to make sure I throw in the kids part because I spend 70% of my time focused on kids 5th grade and below, and people usually think of youth as middle/high schoolers. I have them too but the kids take up a big chunk of my time.

Yesterday one of our girls was in a pageant, something she’d always dreamed of. She’s been the most faithful kid at church in the time I’ve been there and I was delighted to buy a ticket and go support her. She came out and did this pretty epic hair flip during the casual wear portion, and looked every bit a 10-year-old princess during the formal wear. Then all of the contestants for all of the age divisions stood onstage as they first gave out a photogenic award and then a Miss Congeniality one. Finally they announced the Top 10 girls for each age group.

I sat there waiting to hear them call off 33, because hello she is the most adorable one of them all (in that picture, she’s the one with the big white skirt on her dress in the front row, waving). She deserves ALL THE TROPHIES AND ALL THE TIARAS. They called off number after number and all of the girls standing around her made it, but she didn’t. She stood there a beautiful, uncomfortable mess. and I looked at Hilary and said “I don’t know how you’re a parent. She’s not even my child and I’m about to riot.”

At that moment all I wanted was to wrap my arms around her and tell her that she is funny and brave and that she is SO LOVED. I had a stack of cards for her from church members, telling her that we were proud of her. Hilary had a dozen roses. I wanted her to have all of those things before she could start to get sad.

Because I had to watch her wait for affirmation from people that don’t really know her.
and I do that so often.

I wait for a decent amount of “likes” on my status, or for when my instagram likes goes from a list of usernames to a number. I wait for that to affirm me because somehow I’ve learned to wait for the affirmation of people who don’t really matter.

and the whole time I’m doing that, refreshing my Facebook or instagram or whatever, God is in the back of the auditorium with cards and flowers, wanting to get to me before I can listen to any lies that might creep in when my number isn’t called. He wants to wrap his arms around me and tell me that I am funny and brave and SO LOVED.

We have to learn to wait for the right words from the right people. If not we are stuck on an eternal stage listening as number after number after number is called and it gets harder and harder to forget who is cheering for us as if we are the only person in the whole entire world worth cheering for.


31 days of waiting – when “wait” really means “no.”

11th October 2014 || 31 days of waiting, camp arnold. || 2 comments

31 days of waiting // when wait really means no //

We curled up on the couch and watched the Curious George Halloween special and then William decided he wanted to draw a Curious George game and Ellen was writing in the new journal I gave her.

William asked me, “do you want to help me make this game board?”

and I lied.

I said “sure, after I get your snack and fold these blankets. Then I’ll help you.”

Or… wait.

But then I remembered that I don’t really lie to William. He asks me if I’ll play the Wii with him and I say no. If he asks me if I want to push him on the swings and I really don’t want to, then I say no. Sometimes I say yes, when I really want to push him on the swings. But I don’t lie about it.

So then I had to admit that I had lied and explain to him that I wanted to just watch him make it and then have him tell me about it when he was finished. He understood.

Then as I sat there watching William make the board game, I wondered why I had lied. What did I think that would accomplish? Why do I sometimes say WAIT when I mean NO? I do it a lot. Sometimes I do it because I WANT to but I don’t WANT to, you know? There’s so much I want to do… but I really don’t actually want to do it. I want the result of it but not the price of it. I think that’s a valid thing, to buy some time to muster up the energy and the gusto to finally go ahead.

But other times I think it’s just stuff we don’t really want to do but feel obligated. I love William. A lot. I love him so much that I’m not going to pretend to want to spend time doing things with him. I want for every one of his memories to be me willingly and gladly spending time with him, not me putting off doing something with him.

I want to be careful with my words. I want to say “wait” (or later, or after this and this…) only when I want to do something, whether it’s because I love them so much I want to do it or because it’s something I actually want to do.


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