Top Ten Photos of 2019

Top Ten Photos of 2019

…So I know that I said on Friday that I wouldn’t be posting for a while, but then I remembered that this post was already scheduled, and, well, I feel like I have to post it; it’s tradition*.

*The tradition of posting my ten favorite photos started in 2014, and I haven’t missed a year since.

Following the Leader

Following the Leader

Here’s the thing about following God: you don’t know where He will take you.

I remember a particularly sunny day in kindergarten when my teacher decided that we should play “follow the leader.” My teacher, wearing a hula hoop as a sash that reminded me of suffragette Winnifred Banks, marched us up the stairs, out the door, and under the big tree.  As five-year-olds, we didn’t know where our teacher would take us, but we weren’t worried.  We knew that our loving leader would never put us in harm’s way.

On Tuesday night (New Year’s Eve, 3 days ago), as I reflected on 2019, I realized that following God through life is a lot like following my kindergarten teacher around the school.  When we surrender our lives to Him, we do not know where He will take us or how we will get there; all we know is that He will use every experience to sanctify us because that is His will (I Thess. 4:3a; I say more about that here).  We don’t know the joy, the hardship, the blessing, or the pain that we will experience along the way.  Like children following a trustworthy teacher, we follow our Lord blindly. (Ironically, this was also the lesson in My Utmost for His Highest on Wednesday, January 1, but that’s off topic….).

Last February, I heard about some ministry needs at a Christian school in Spain, and I began praying about how God could use me.  As I continued to pray and follow Him through 2019, I felt the growing desire to teach in Spain.  A few months ago, I completed the application process, and I committed to teach for 2 years.

I am telling you all of this for two reasons: (1) I want to look back on this post throughout 2020 and remember that following God is uncertain, but it is safe, and (2) I needed to close this blog with a good post.

I am not saying that I will never blog @ kats9lifes again, but I don’t plan to keep up with this blog for much longer.  I have started a new blog where I plan to share all about my ministry in Spain.  I hope to see you there!

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December Photo Challenge 2019

December Photo Challenge 2019

I DID IT!! I have posted a photo from every day this year.

Before you look at the December pictures, I will warn you that some of the captions are a s-t-r-e-t-c-h.  I had a one-to-one ratio of captions to pictures this month, so I had to make it work.

 

If you want, you can also check out the first eleven months of the year:

On the eighth day of Christmas break…

On the eighth day of Christmas break…

…we circled the Presidential Range.

People had told me that the White Mountains are beautiful, but I did not expect these breathtaking views.  The snow-covered peaks that tower high in the clouds are unlike anything I have seen in North Carolina.  I wish that I could have spent several days exploring the trails and soaking in God’s beautiful creation.

 

On the seventh day of Christmas break…

On the seventh day of Christmas break…

…we romped through Rhode Island.

On the sixth day of Christmas break…

On the sixth day of Christmas break…

…we managed not to fall on the ice.

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If you know me well, you know two facts: (1) I sprinkle literary allusions into most conversations, and (2) I love being outside.  Thus, a quick jaunt around Walden Pond seemed like an ideal way to spend the morning.

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When we arrived at the park, someone warned us that the trail on the south side of the lake was covered in ice. Yet, falsely believing that we are seasoned winter hikers (or maybe just desiring to prove that southerners can handle ice), we chose to wander Henry David Thoreau’s old stomping ground.

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Truly, the walk was perfect…until we reached the south side of the lake where, as predicted, a thick layer of slippery ice covered the hilly path.  We charged (…er, I mean, shuffled) ahead, and I am proud to say that we arrived back at the north side without falling.

Despite the ice, we Thoreau-ly (thoroughly) enjoyed the beauty of Walden Pond.

P.S. We also stopped by the North Bridge while we were in Concord.  Here are some bonus pictures:

On the fifth day of Christmas break…

On the fifth day of Christmas break…

…we walked the Rose Kennedy Greenway in Boston.