April Photo Challenge 2019

April Photo Challenge 2019

My thought on April 1:

All the creative cells in my brain are dead.  Should I just quit this challenge?

My thought on April 30:

I’m 1/3 done with this year-long challenge.  I can’t stop now!

 

 

January Photo Challenge 2019

January Photo Challenge 2019

I have 365 photo prompts, and I have used 31 of them.  How long will I stick with this project?  Your guess is as good as mine.

Simple Joy Saturday #6

Simple Joy Saturday #6

Every Saturday, I share three simple things that brought me happiness during the week. These posts may grow or evolve as time passes. Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section.

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This week, I have quoted Philippians 4:4 countless times.

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Peanut Butter Brownie Latte (Blind Spot Monthly Series)

Peanut Butter Brownie Latte (Blind Spot Monthly Series)

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In August 2015, I started working at my school’s on-campus coffee shop, The Brewin’ Den. I loved that job. From behind the counter, I met so many students that I otherwise would have never talked to. I loved brightening each student’s morning by making coffee for them.

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As a barista, I could be creative with flavors. The statement, “make me anything with an extra shot” made my day.

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I got free food, and trust me — day-old scones are SO edible!

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And I got paid. Yes, even minimum wage (plus tips) looks good as a college student!

It was an all-around great job.

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Perhaps one of the biggest results of the job was that I slowly grew to like coffee. As I played around with flavors, I realized that black coffee is simply a canvas for flavorful artwork.

So step into my studio…

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Ingredients 

  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon Blind Spot Peanut Butter Brownie
  • 1/2 tablespoon honey, or more (depending on desired sweetness)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup fresh hot espresso or strong coffee

Directions

  •  In a small saucepan set over medium heat, combine the milk, peanut butter, honey, and vanilla, stirring until smooth.
  • When mixture is steaming, whisk in cocoa powder.  Continue whisking until mixture is frothy.
  • Pour the hot coffee into a mug.
  • Add the frothy milk mixture and serve immediately.

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Recipe adapted from I Love Peanut Butter.

Second Timothy Two: Farmer

Second Timothy Two: Farmer

 

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Up with the dawn and the rooster crow.

Been that way since I don’t know.

Throw a little water on my face.

Get out the door and greet the day.

–The Harvester, Brandon Heath

The teacher is respected by his students.  The soldier is honored by his nation.  The athlete is admired by his fans.

The farmer, on the other hand, has a humdrum life with the vegetables.

Nothing glamorous.

Bring out the sickle
Bring out the pail
Bushel full of wire
And a fork to the bale
Work through the pain in the rain or shine
C’mon y’all we still got time

–The Harvester, Brandon Heath

The farmer rises before the sun for exhausting work.  He carries heavy loads, walks endless fields, and deals with stubborn animals.  In addition to hard labor, the weather fights against him.

Completely grueling.

For all that we’ve grown
How could we forget
Those who don’t know
Or just don’t know yet
Let’s harvest this field
From sunrise to sunset
The Master is coming
We are not done yet

–The Harvester, Brandon Heath

No matter how much produce the farmer grows, he has to continue working every day.  He cannot decide that last year’s crop is enough to last for the rest of his life.

There are no guarantees.

The turning of the season
Is upon us, my friends
Now’s the time
All that was sown
Is there for the reaping

–The Harvester, Brandon Heath

But when harvest comes, it all pays off.  Not only does he have a product to sell for money, but he has the benefit of selecting the finest crops for himself should he so choose.  He gets firsthand benefits of all of his labor.

There is great gain.

The farmer who works hard should be the first person to get some of the food that was grown.

–Second Timothy 2:6

Paul’s final comparison of the Christian life is to the work of a farmer.  It is not glamorous.  It is grueling.  There are no guarantees.

But there is great gain.

And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.

–Galatians 6:9

Top Ten Tuesday: Snowed In

Top Ten Tuesday: Snowed In

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“Snowmageddon” hit the East Coast this weekend, and a large portion of the country was struck immobile–college students included.  So what does a twenty-something girl do when her only mode of transportation is foot?  Here’s a glimpse:

1. Take pictures – When I awoke Friday morning, there was about an inch of fluffy snow.  Although I have a plethora of pictures of my school covered in white, I grabbed my camera and headed for the cafeteria.  Sadly, my memory card has been giving me problems, and I was not able to take pictures until after breakfast.   By the time I had switched memory cards, the snow had turned to sleet and freezing rain.  I only got a few shots before I returned to my dorm room to protect my camera.

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I went back out on Saturday and took pictures in Old Salem.

2. Study – Snow does not cancel online quizzes.

3. Sled – I walked a couple blocks with friends through the sleet and freezing rain to sled down the steep, short hill and onto the soccer field.  It was so wet, so cold, and so much fun!

4. School projects – Lucky for me, my projects were the fun type: creating bulletin boards and painting inspirational posters for health class.

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I also wrote a paper, which was not nearly as fun.

5. Watch movies – While I painted the poster, I joined some other girls in the movie room.  Admittedly, I did not watch the entire movie.  I only stayed until I was done painting.

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6. Work – The on-campus coffee shop extended its hours because of the snow, I picked up an extra shift.  Then we ran out of milk…

7. Make oatmeal – Not that it needed to snow before I could do this.  I eat oatmeal almost daily 🙂

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8. Read a book – Technically, reading The Year of Billy Miller was an assignment for my Children’s Literature class, but it was still a cute book.

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9. Campus worship – Most churches were closed on Sunday, so we planned a campus worship service with a few songs, a short devotion, and testimonies.

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10. Catch up on blog posts – Blogging always gets pushed aside at the beginning of the school year.  I tried to catch up, but I am still a little behind.

 

Checking Myself

Checking Myself

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I love the kids that I work with.  Last week, one of them middle school boys asked me what all of my favorite things were.  A little while later, he handed me this masterpiece.

I know that teachers shouldn’t have favorites, but let’s be honest; we all do, and this child is one of mine.  Introvert.  Creative.  Deep thinker.  Lover of superheroes. Unknowingly selfish.  Quiet.  Melancholy.  OCD.

When I think about these children, I have to check myself.  I see so many attributes in them that I also see in myself.  Am I pleased that there are students acting like me?  Am I a positive influence for them to emulate?  Do I show them God’s love, grace, and patience?

Paul was so confident of his character that he was able to write, “Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ” (I Cor.  11:1).

Lord, make me like You.