Tuesday, March 30, 2010


In the spring and summer, I am addicted to painting my fingernails. I love grays, blues, purples, pinks and reds in all different shades. I was browsing OPI last week when I came across their new Alice in Wonderland colors. I'm not going to see the movie (not my cup of tea) but I will have to get at least one of these:
1. Absolutely Alice
2. Mad as a Hatter
3. Thanks So Muchness
4. Off with Her Red

Ok, I admit. The names are my favorite part!

Monday, March 29, 2010

a2 in Review

Yesterday, Chris challenged us to get past our excuses and be ready to act when God calls us. Listen to the full message online here.

Intervention - God's "A" Team

This is the story of God speaking to Moses through the burning bush.

Then the Lord told him, "You can be sure I have seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard their cries for deliverance from their harsh slave drivers. Yes, I am aware of their suffering. So I have come down to deliver them from the power of the Egyptians... So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people, the Israelites, out of Egypt".
Exodus 3: 7-8, 10 (NIV)

When Moses understood that the Lord was calling him to act, he did what we all would do. He made excuses. His excuses and God's response are perfectly applicable to any call God places in your life - big or small.

Our Excuse: "Lord, what do I have to offer? I am a nobody!"
God's Response: "I will be with you!"

But Moses said to God, "Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?" Then God told him, "I will be with you..."
Exodus 3:11-12 (NIV)

Our Excuse: "Lord, I don't have all the answers. I don't know what to say."
God's Response: "I will tell you what to say."

But Moses protested, "If I go to the people of Israel and tell them, 'the God of your ancestors has sent me to you,' they won't believe me. They will ask, 'Which god are you talking about? What is his name?' Then what should I tell them?" God replied, "I am the one who always is. Just tell them, 'I am has sent me to you.'"
Exodus 3:13-14 (NLT)

Our Excuse: "Lord, what if they don't believe me?"
God's Response: "That's not your job! Your job is to trust and obey."

But Moses protested again, "Look, they won't believe me! They won't do what I tell them. They'll just say, 'the Lord never appeared to you.'" Then the LORD said to him, "What is that in your hand?" "A staff," he replied. The LORD said, "Throw it on the ground." Moses threw it on the ground and it became a snake, and he ran from it. Then the LORD said to him, "Reach out your hand and take it by the tail." So Moses reached out and took hold of the snake and it turned back into a staff in his hand. "This," said the LORD, "is so that they may believe that the LORD, the God of their fathers—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob—has appeared to you."
Exodus 4:1-5 (NLT)

Our Excuse: "Lord, I'm not capable."
God's Response: "I made you!"

But Moses pleaded with the Lord, "O Lord, I'm just not a good speaker. I never have been, and I'm not now, even after you have spoken to me. I'm clumsy with words." "Who makes mouths?" the Lord asked him. "Who makes people so they can speak or not speak, hear or not hear, see or not see? Is it not I, the Lord?"
Exodus 4:10-11 (NLT)

Our Excuse: "Lord, I'm not as qualified as others. Send someone else."
God's Response: "No! You are my answer!"

But Moses again pleaded, "Lord, please! Send someone else." Then the Lord became angry with Moses.
Exodus 4:13

This sermon reminds me why I am blogging about a2 in the first place. I never want to forget this.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Love for Etsy

I went shopping last week with my mom and stripes were everywhere for spring. Mom found a cute tank for me with black and white stripes and a fabric flower on the left shoulder. Since then, my stripe craving has grown and I found myself perusing Etsy for the latest in striped clothing, accessories and more. Enjoy!

{Floppy Headband by Jella Bee, Paper Straws by Fort & Field, Bird Print by John W. Golden, Handbag by Crazy Boy, French Party Dress by Ouma, Paper Masking Tape by Nothing Elegant, Hair Clip by BrydFerth, House Shoes by Infusion}

What do you think about stripes for spring? My favorite combination is black and white stripes with colorful florals. So pretty!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

That's a Killer Stache

These days, my usually clean-cut husband is letting his beard grow to epic proportions (this may be a slight exaggeration). I adore the scruffy masculine look, but sometimes his mustache tickles me!

In honor of killer mustache's worldwide, I present the following t-shirt designs by Christopher David Ryan. They crack me up!

Do you love it when your husband or boyfriend grows out his facial hair?
I know I do!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Music to My Ears

On recent trips to Atlanta and Nashville, Eric and I hit up the local record stores to build our vinyl collection. Eric found The Black Keys and some Mississippi blues. I found my two new favorite albums.

Norah Jones - The Fall
This is a Norah Jones album even your boyfriend or husband will love. It's more upbeat than her past work, with guitars and drums in addition to her usual piano. Her smooth sultry voice accompanies the playfulness of the lyrics to make for a very enjoyable album. This past weekend, we popped the vinyl into our record player and sat on the porch swing, listening to this album through the screen door. Below is a video of one of my favorites. Enjoy!

Chasing Pirates - by Norah Jones, The Fall

Justin Townes Earle - Midnight at the Movies
I first heard Justin Townes Earle when he opened for Dan Auerbach and The Fast Five at a concert in Nashville. His quirky clothes, lanky body and twangy voice struck a chord and had me hooked. I was lucky to come across his CD at a record shop in Atlanta and it's been playing in mine or Eric's car ever since. He is a southern gentlemen with a touch of brass. I love the timing of his lyrics and the simplicity of his music. Below is a video of one of my favorites. Enjoy!

What I Mean to You - Justin Townes Earl, Midnight at the Movies

What music are you listening to lately? Do you ever listen to your music on vinyl records? It's so fun!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Love for Etsy

With a new husband and a new apartment, I am ready to host a dinner party, courtesy of Etsy.

I'll send out these invitations to notify our friends. By Cheer Up Cherup
I'll hang this paper garland to lighten the mood. By Kate Greiner
I'll use these wobbly plates to serve a scrumptious dinner. By atelierBB

I'll use these cups to hold ice cream sundaes. From Tracy Anns

I'll have these coasters ready for when the conversation moves from the table to the living room. By Little Coaster Gnome

What Etsy finds would you use for a dinner party?

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Photo Project

Friends Josh and Nina created the blog Minty Forest to document their "blind-collaboration" of daily photos. For one year they each took a photo without telling the other anything about it. The next morning they posted the photos side by side. The result is sometimes surprising, sometimes funny, and almost always inspiring. Below are just a few of my favorites.

{day 2, day 53, day 114, day 147, day 332}

This photo project makes me yearn for a new camera and a new eye with which to view the world (read= I stink at taking photos and my camera has been dropped in sand and snow).

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Pillow Talk

I adore these accent pillows by My Sparrow. Discovered via Cup of Jo.

*Update: After posting this, I had the nagging feeling I had seen the lovely pillow number 5 before. I did a little research and found it in a wonderful pillow post on Two Ellie.

Monday, March 15, 2010

a2 in Review

Yesterday, we took a brief break from the Unshakable series for a two-part sermon titled, Intervention. Chris and Janet are passionate about reaching people in the city of Birmingham and that's what this message was all about! I encourage you to listen to Chris' message here.

Intervention - The Other Side

That day when evening came, he said to his disciples,
"Let us go over to the other side."
Mark 4:35 (NIV)

As Chris points out, this isn't just a geographical move, it's about taking this ministry from Galilee to Decapolis, an area of ten cities home to pagan people who worshiped pigs and were viewed as extremely sinful by the Israelites. Jesus was calling his disciples to radicalize their ministry - go outside their comfort zone towards people who were different!

So they go. Jesus sets a demon-possessed man free and instead of being grateful, they beg him to leave. Just as he is getting back into the boat, the no longer demon-possessed asks to leave with them. Jesus encourages him to go and tell everyone what the Lord had done. Jesus and his disciples leave and the man begins to tell his story. As the story spreads, the people are blown away by what they hear.

Jesus and his disciples return to Decapolis and, this time, are greeted by a large crowd in need of healing and Jesus heals them all.

The crowd was amazed! Those who hadn't been able to speak were talking, the cripple were made well, the lame were walking around, and those who had been blind could see again! And they praised the God of Israel.
Matthew 15:31 (NLT)

A change had taken place in Decapolis. All because a group of men were willing to follow Jesus into uncertain territory. All because those same men didn't give up after the first visit ended badly. All because one man was willing to share his God story.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Love for Etsy

Today's Etsy post is inspired by a hint of spring and the strong desire to finally, finally ride my bike. Enjoy!

{Bicycle Built for Two by Paper Michelle, Bicycle Carcass necklace by Maureen Duffy, T-shirt by Pretty Raccoon, Pin by Button Empire, Nice Wheel tag by Heroes & Criminals, Pillow by Jenna Rose, Flying Bike messenger bag by Marty May, Poster by Flatland Kitchen}

I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride my bike
I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride it where I like
-Queen, 1978

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Good Hat Day

This bucket hat from Anthropologie is calling my name. I love the subtle colors and the innocent, vintage flair.

The price, unfortunately, is breaking my heart. Oh, and now I want to get my hair cut.

What hair accessories are you eyeing for Spring?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

A Wednesday Woman

Let's continue with chapter 2 in Captivating, by John and Stasi Eldredge. If you missed last week's post, you may catch up here.

Chapter 2 - What Eve Alone Can Tell
*words in italics are direct quotes from the book

The desire of a woman's heart and the realities of a woman's life seem an ocean apart. Oh, we long for romance and an irreplaceable role in a great story; we long for beauty. But that's not the life we have... A woman's struggle with her sense of worth points to something glorious she was designed to be. (pg 21)

Rather than asking, "What should a woman do - what is her role?" it would be far more helpful to ask, "What is a woman - what is her design?" and, "Why did God place woman in our midst?" (pg 22)

The answer is found in the first woman. John and Stasi paint a beautiful picture of creation, culminating with Eve.

She is the crescendo, the final, astonishing work of God. Woman. In one last flourish creation comes to a finish not with Adam, but with Eve. She is the Master's finishing touch. (pg 25)

And just as Adam was created in God's image, so was Eve. What does Eve reveal to us about God?

First, you'll discover that God is relational to his core, that he has a heart for romance. Second, that he longs to share adventures with us - adventures you cannot accomplish without him. And finally, that God has a beauty to unveil. A beauty that is captivating and powerfully redemptive. (pg 26)

Our deepest desires as women were meant to be met by God. Yes, I still love to experience romance, adventure and beauty in human interaction. That is the excitement of life! But I also have a God who draws my heart and wants to take me on a wild journey, all the while revealing the wonders of his creation.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

March Calendar

The March calendar was just made available from blogger Silhouette Jess. You may download and print the calendar for free here.

Don't you just love the bird and the yellow damask design on the side? With the threat of snow in today's forecast, I cannot wait to hang this spring-inspired calendar!

**If you decide to print this, hop on over to Silhouette and let the designer know how much you love her work.

Monday, March 1, 2010

a2 in Review

Yesterday, we continued the series, Unshakable, with a message entitled One. I encourage you to listen to the full message here (or by going to iTunes and searching for a2 Church) or read the message notes on Pastor Chris' blog.

Chris spent time breaking down the trinity of God and how each member of the trinity relates to one another. Then, he blew me away with this: God desires us to experience oneness in our relationships as He experiences oneness in the trinity. Oneness with God, our spouse, our family, our friends, our church body. In fact, Jesus prayed:

I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in me because of their testimony. I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one - as you are in me, Father, and I am in you. And may the be in us so that the world will believe you sent me.
John 17:20-21 (NLT)

For the remainder of this post, I am simply going to list the threats to unity and the spiritual graces that protect unity. As I pray this week, I am asking God to show me practical ways to apply this message in my marriage, my family relationships and my friendships.

Threats to Unity:
1. Criticism
2. Uncontrolled egos

Spiritual Graces that Preserve and Protect Unity:
1. Be humble
2. Be gracious and meek
3. Be patient
4. Be proactive

Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other faults because of your love. Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace.
Ephesians 4:2-3 (NLT)
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