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Simple Moments Stick

2014 Reading Challenge

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

coward or Christian?

29th July 2014 || faith. || 2 comments

My friend Annie‘s new book, Let’s All Be Brave: Living Life with Everything You Have, came out a few weeks ago.
As I was reading it, I had to stop and text her about something I was so convicted of while reading it.
and from then on, I read the book through that conviction.

In the time I was reading it, I went on a hike that ended up with me staying as far ahead of everyone else as I could so I could cry and pray and look like a crazy person.

I poured my heart out to God about this conviction, which is really an opportunity I don’t know what to do with. I started telling him what I saw to be the cost of pursuing it – what I would lose, who I would hurt, what I would risk. Then I started telling God what I saw to be the cost of abandoning it – what I would lose, who I would hurt, what I would risk.

and then the Holy Spirit cleaned out the ears of my heart and I heard deep in my soul this question:

Well, Stephanie… What do YOU want?

Which made me start crying EVEN MORE. Because you know what I want? I want to take that opportunity. So I said it. Outloud. and God pointed out that he had PAVED A WAY for me to take that opportunity.

I have been so quiet in my spirit since that moment, because I realized that I have spent my whole life thinking that being a Christian meant worrying about how my actions affect other people. Seriously, I don’t post on Facebook without filtering it through a few key people on my friends list and thinking how they would respond to it. I agree to plans that other people initiate because I wonder how saying “no thanks” would affect them, with no concern to myself.

and it hit me that maybe what I’ve thought was living a Christian life… is really living a COWARD life. It puts the dreams and emotions and feelings of others as the primary function of life.. often at the cost of pursuing my own things, which seems holy but really is just a sissy thing.

I was practicing the book of Philippians {which I’m trying to memorize.. wish me luck} and I got caught on the verse that says:

Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.

NOT ONLY. It doesn’t say “Each of you shouldn’t look to your own interests, just the interests of others.” It says that my interests are just as important as the interests of others. It’s like the “love your neighbor as yourself” thing. If you don’t love yourself, you’re gonna pull your neighbor down to your pit of misery instead of having a healthy view of yourself and pulling them up to your stable self-image.

Every moment, my feelings towards what I will do change. Some days I cry with excitement because I am going to take this opportunity… other days I cry with sorrow for even considering abandoning what I have. I am all in, and then I am all out. Hot then cold, yes then no. In then out, up then down.. you know, like the Katy Perry song.

My prayer for myself  is that no matter what I choose, that I would make the decision bravely and not disguising my cowardice as Christian living. and I pray that for all of you, too. That you would not hide behind the proper, approved church life, living in the outward shell of a Christian while your God-given dreams lay stagnant. I bet those sleeping dreams make God more sad than the people who have to keep repenting for the mistakes they have made while bringing theirs to life.

ps this is the book, when I first started reading it and before the conviction hit me so I didn’t even know it was coming.

Photo on 7-19-14 at 11.32 AM #4


Weekly Wishes | #4

28th July 2014 || everyday life || 4 comments

Daaaangit I missed last week’s wishes, so let’s just start fresh….ish. Because maybe I also didn’t do too awesome at the last weekly wishes, either. haha. AND I’m barely making this for Monday. It’s SO HOT… I tried to nap, but it was too hot to nap! It’s been a weird day. SO ANYWAY, MOVING ON.

  • hit my fitbit goals every day {guys. Ernie got a fitbit. I am so happy about this!}
  • 17 miles {I was doing SO WELL at the 14 miles and I want to take it up a notch}
  • write a letter to Dana {yes, STILL!}
  • make popsicles! {except where do I buy a popsicle mold? HELP!}
  • paint all 20 of my nails {because they are looking pretty bad}
  • read a book

Do you have any goals for this week?

Also does anybody else watch The Bachelorette? because Nick looks like the store-brand version of Michael Buble… anybody else see it?


Linking up with Weekly Wishes.


oh hey friday | #2

25th July 2014 || everyday life || 2 comments

ONE //
This week has been SO EXHAUSTING. I haven’t been able to do anything except wake up, drink coffee, go to work, come home and sleep. That’s it. That’s my life. Today was the first day in probably a month that I woke up without an alarm clock – annoyingly, I got up at 6 am, but forced myself to sleep in until 8:15. I am determined to make today productive.

TWO //
Yesterday I took some of the teenagers to the beach. I know, my job is really super tough and you should feel really bad for me. We went to this place and Carla ordered a raspberry sherbet cone, but when I looked over I freaked out thinking she was eating one of those troll dolls! It’s not just me, right? Does anybody else see it?

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People of the internet, I just need everyone to love John Crist with me because he is seriously SO FUNNY. I’ve kept my comment in this screen cap so you can all know that I am not even secretive about this.  Twitter / Instagram … he is particularly funny if you grew up in the church.

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On Tuesday I took the kids of my church to the zoo {I KNOW, JUST MORE PROOF THAT MY JOB IS REALLY DIFFICULT… but it is really SO EXHAUSTING} and I renewed my zoo membership. So if anyone wants to go to the zoo.. I’m your girl because I can take one person in with me for free. They had to pull me away from the elephants because I missed staring at their big gray butts so much.

In honor of her birthday, Beka from Sunshine to the Square Inch is giving away some of her favorite items. Usually people ask to receive them, but she’s giving them away. What a girl, right? Head over to her blog to wish her a happy {now belated} birthday and to enter the giveaway. Or enter the giveaway here {but go wish her happy belated birthday, for real!}


a Rafflecopter giveaway



have a few frappuccinos on us…. :)

18th July 2014 || uncategorized || 2 comments

You know what happens in the summer? My coffee budget SKYROCKETS because brewing a pot of hot coffee on a chilly day is so much more convenient than making it cold, which requires advanced planning and stuff. So instead I splurge in iced drinks, and that means I am dropping $$$$$ on coffee.

Anyone else feel me on this? Looking at you, frappuccino lovers!

Robyn rounded up a few of us to offer one lucky person a $35 Starbucks gift card!

Enter below && good luck!

{also speaking of Giveaways, congrats to the winner of the Kisspat necklace, Mai Tran! I’ll be e-mailing you soon}

the giveaway is run via rafflecopter & will be open for one week. it is open internationally – Robyn will mail the giftcard anywhere! you may enter as much or as little as you like! if you already follow, you are entitled to a free entry! enter using the rafflecopter below & good luck! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


the other side of fear.

15th July 2014 || adventures, everyday life || 2 comments

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There’s a quote that says “everything you want is on the other side of fear.”

A few weeks ago I went hiking with these two crazy boys that like to climb up sides of mountains and go off the trail and basically give me heart attacks every ten seconds. Towards the top of Beacon Rock, they climbed over the railing and went marching over some rocks. One of them, Other Ryan (they are both called Ryan), told me I should follow.

Uh, no thank you.

So I stood on the safe little trail, holding Other Ryan’s water bottle and wondering how weird I looked just standing there, staring off at a bunch of rocks.

and then I thought… this is stupid, and I climbed over the railing.

But then I got to these rocks you had to climb over. Other Ryan was still convincing me to come over, and I suddenly realized how far up we were and how much trust I’d put in railings and how gravity and I never really agree and gravity usually wins.

The other Ryan (lower case o) was already on the other side and I could hear him talking and saying how nice it was and I just wanted so desperately to see what it looked like on the other sides of the rocks.

Despite all of my better judgment, I did it. I climbed over the rocks. Other Ryan kept going out farther, and Ryan was braver than I but not so brave as Other Ryan, and so we all just sat apart looking at this beautiful view of the Columbia River Gorge.

Ryan went back over and Other Ryan stayed out there for awhile, and as he came past I admitted I didn’t know how to get back. It had been so much easier climbing up and over than back and down.

He climbed back over and then showed me where to put each foot and then where to put my hands and gave me step by step instructions on how to make my way back to safety.

It has been tucked away into one of my most favorite moments, because I don’t often face my fears. Sometimes I think physical fears are easier to confront than emotional fears. Like so what if I had fallen off the cliff and died. That’s better than being honest about how I’m feeling and then having to live with rejection or lose friends or whatever. Or so it can seem.

Of all the pictures I have taken all year, this is one of my most favorite. It was a moment I had been brave but still sat there kinda scared but also amazed and excited and at peace. Climbing over the rocks is just half the battle, because you still have to keep deciding what to do from there.


Weekly Wishes | #3

14th July 2014 || everyday life || 2 comments

Hello, people of the internet. Happy Monday! Let’s get down to business.

Last {and this} week’s goals:

  • 14 miles
  • Write a letter to Dana
  • Read a book
  • Make a summer playlist

I accomplished 25% of my list {14.65 miles}, haha. But here’s the thing. I STARTED to read a book. I really did, and that is better than having not picked up a book at all, am I right?? So you know what? I’m carrying this list over. 14 more miles, write a letter to Dana, read a book, make a summer playlist. I guess in order to do that, I should PROBABLY turn off Criminal Minds reruns and start doing stuff.

July’s Goals:
Catch up on #biblein90summer
Make popsicles
Finish a 30 day photo challenge {I’m participating in #fmsphotoaday on instagram, so follow along!}
Get rid of 100 items
40 miles {14.65/40 – 36.52%}

Summer Bucket List:
Try a new flavor of ice cream – Go for a hike – BBQ – Stargaze – Make popsicles – Go on a picnic – Bowling – Spend a day at the beach – Camping – Bonfire with friends – Berry picking – Float down the river – Farmers market – Have a Pinterest party – DIY shorts – Summer playlist – Send postcards

Linking up with Weekly Wishes


oh hey, friday | #1

11th July 2014 || everyday life || 4 comments

ONE //
You guys, John Crist really is one of the funniest humans ever. The other day I decided to look at all of his Instagram pictures and I literally LAUGHED OUT LOUD at this one:

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THAT FACE. Dying. DY-ING! He is my favorite.

TWO //
Tomorrow Emily and I are going to Wallace Falls. I am so excited to drive in a car with Emily and go for a walk to a waterfall with Emily and I just love doing everything with Emily.


This is my definition of a perfect Sunday summer afternoon.

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{Iced mocha c / o Torque, honey sticks c / o Vancouver Farmer’s Market}

I’m working on my summertime playlist! What are some of your 2014 summer songs?
Also. I LOVED this series of tweets from my boy John about summer songs.

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So my friend Ernie Halter, the guy I always talk about, just finished the Kickstarter I got to help him dream up when I visited in May. He set his goal at $1,990 and he ended up making $28,430 DOLLARS. WHAT. THE. HECK! I’m so proud of him and so excited for the opportunities this will open up for him with his music. He’s seriously one of the hardest working, kindest, best people I’ve ever met in my whole entire life.

linking up with oh hey, friday!


fujifilm or fitbit?

8th July 2014 || everyday life || 10 comments

First let me say that if you’re not on the Swagbucks bandwagon, you need to be. Like right now. You get points for searching, answering polls, doing shopping you normally do (hello GROUPON) and playing games. Those points (aka SWAGBUCKS) can be redeemed for gift cards and prizes. It’s legit, too. In the past 4 years I’ve earned 28,000ish SBs and have redeemed them for: $25 paypal cash, $65 amazon gift cards, $100 southwest air gift card and a $10 iTunes gift card.

So anyway, I have $23 in my Amazon account and enough SB for $60 in gift cards. and I am torn between two items.

#1. I’ve had this Fujifilm Instax camera sitting in my Amazon cart for MONTHS. I LOVE the prints they produce. I don’t really know what else to say about it except it’s one of those things I really want but would never pay out of pocket for.

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#2. I first saw Anna post about Fitbit and it seemed kinda cool, but when I was in Nashville I noticed Kristen had one and I started asking her like fifteen thousand zillion questions about hers and since returning from Nashville at the end of May, I have had a Fitbit on my mind. Especially this one, because… well, pink.

The Fujifilm camera plus two rolls of film would cost me $0.35.
The Fitbix Flex, after the 5% Red Card discount would cost me $38.

Anybody have any thoughts? I have analysis paralysis and can’t decide anything!!


Weekly Wishes #2

7th July 2014 || everyday life || 2 comments

Last week I jumped on the Weekly Wishes bandwagon by starting with my July goals, which are listed at the bottom of this post (along with my summer bucket list!). Here are this week’s wishes:

14 miles
I am pretty on track to get my 40 miles in this month, but I am still also trying to catch up on my 365 miles in a year group thing… and I am so behind. Like… I just calculated it and I’m going to have to do 1.9 miles every day from here until 2015 to make up for it. Which is awesome because let me give you some ideas of how I feel about intentional exercise:

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The struggle is real, people.

Write a letter to Dana
My friend Leon has found himself a girlfriend! and she agreed to be my friend and I said I’d write her a letter and that was like a month ago!

Read a book. 
In the winter I began a relationship with Netflix. We recently broke up, and I’m still trying to break the television habit. Luckily I caught on to the whole TV-on-my-iPad-while-on-the-treadmill thing, which has helped… but still. I need something else to do. LIKE READING CHICK LIT!

Make my summer playlist.
Anybody have any suggestions?? Comment them below!

…that’s it. Just those four things. :)


July’s Goals:
Catch up on #biblein90summer
Make popsicles
Finish a 30 day photo challenge {I’m participating in #fmsphotoaday on instagram, so follow along!}
Get rid of 100 items
40 miles {7.45/40 – 18.62%}

Summer Bucket List:
Try a new flavor of ice creamGo for a hikeBBQ – Stargaze – Make popsicles – Go on a picnic – Bowling – Spend a day at the beach – Camping – Bonfire with friends – Berry picking – Float down the river – Farmers market – Have a Pinterest party – DIY shorts – Summer playlist – Send postcards

** ALSO: Don’t forget to enter my giveaway for a Kisspat necklace! **


Linking up with Weekly Wishes.


and this, this is my life on the fourth of july.

5th July 2014 || everyday life || 0 comments

…it isn’t much, but at least it’s mine. // 4th of july, stephen kellogg & the sixers

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{#fmsphotoaday 4: stars}

My family had a BBQ. and for the record, I manned the grill for awhile. I got pretty good. Except for the time I dropped the hamburger. and almost caught my hair on fire. and ran away from the flames. But aside from all of that… I was pretty good at it.

Speaking of getting good at something. I’m going to write more about this later, but I’ve decided recently that I really need to learn how to use my camera. So I spent some time playing around with it and I have decided that I’m not ever going to use the “auto” function for my camera. Maybe it’s just me, but I completely saw a difference when I was looking through the pictures.

Before I let you go… have you entered the giveaway for a free necklace? Because you definitely should do that right now.

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