Breath of Heaven

Today, the first day of Advent, I am thinking of Mary, mother of Jesus. Her song, found in Luke 1: 46-55, is, I think, one of the most beautiful scriptures. Her surrender to God's will is so complete, so unquestioning, so grace filled. And, this song is one of the most lovely of the holiday to me.
Do you wonder, as you watch my face,
If a wiser one should have had my place?
But I offer all I am
For the mercy of your plan
Help me be strong
Breath of Heaven-Jessica Simpson



Commute pictures taken from 9/22/2011 to 11/3/2011-various Hipstamatic settings

Time is a thief with a loaded gun
The sky rolls by while the days are gone
The night falls prey to another sun
All like clockwork they won't stop
Clockwork by MuteMath


behind the blog november 2011

My latest 8tracks playlist has the songs I've blogged since my last playlist, some other songs that didn't make the cut for one reason or another, and a few I am just enjoying now.



Nearly a month ago, our family of four went to visit my family in north Alabama. It was a beautiful fall weekend during which we celebrated my father and mother's birthdays. There were a few impatiens still in bloom and the light that afternoon was irresistible to me and my camera.

There were also some pretty good looking kids around that weekend. Taking pictures of them reminded me that I don't take enough pictures of people and that I really should do that more.


My Office

Hipstamatic: John S, Alfred Infrared

My office...wow. What can I say? Nothing, really. But, let me share a video that I think of EVERY TIME I put money in the vending machine at work...especially when I'm trying to buy a $1.00 bottle of Diet Coke with mostly dimes and nickels I've scraped together from the bottom of my purse.


Day Thirty: With Flaws

Hipstamatic: John M, Ina's 1969
Filter Mania: Retro, The Lion, Retro

Hallelujah, grace like rain falls down on me
Hallelujah, all my stains are washed away, washed away
Grace Like Rain by Todd Agnew


Day Twenty-Nine: Style

Hipstamatic: John M, Rock BW-11

I've said it before and it's still true. My style is 90% black and white. Monday's version included one of my favorite shirts...this lightweight really drapey cowl neck shirt. I feel slightly like Marcel Marceau when I wear it but I still love it.


Day Twenty-Eight: Air

Hipstamatic: Lucas AB2, Blanko
Collage made with Diptic

Lizzie catching some air on the swing set after church while waiting on her daddy to finish wrapping things up in the booth. I should have joined her. Swinging is really a great feeling.


Day Twenty-Five: Shadows

Camera+: Ansel

The lyrics to this particular song are so wonderful, you're going to get every word of them here and I hope you will listen to it if you don't already know it.

Life is full of light and shadow
O the joy and O the sorrow
O the sorrow

And yet will He bring
Dark to light
And yet will He bring
Day from night

When shadows fall on us
We will not fear
We will remember

When darkness falls on us
We will not fear
We will remember

When all seems lost
When we're thrown and we're tossed
We remember the cost
We're restin' in the
Shadow of the cross
Shadows by David Crowder Band


Day Twenty-Three: Big vs. Tiny

Hipstamatic: John S, Pistil

I am a tax accountant and this video, made by the vendor whose tax prep software we use, is SPOT ON.

I do love office supplies (binder clips of all sizes included), so that much about the job rocks.


Day Twenty-Two: Equal

Hipstamatic: John S, Kodot XGrizzled

The fact that the Kindle can hold 3,500 books is amazing to me. I got mine last Christmas because we were getting absolutely bogged down in books. I really love books, but I needed to take a step towards something more environmentally friendly (and less clutter producing). I didn't even miss the sensation of holding a real book after a few chapters on the Kindle, either.

I do still love to visit a bookstore, though, and it's hard to leave there without at least a few books in hand. Other than that, I buy the Kindle version of books whenever they are available unless the price is too much higher than a paperback, which is sometimes the case. (I'm looking at you, original publisher of Carl Hiaasen books. Almost $13 for an e-reader version of his 22 year old book drove me right to a used bookstore to find what I wanted.)

I also find that once I start a series in paper, I want to own them all in the same format. Really obsessively so. I still want to get the last several Harry Potter books in the paperback version. We started reading them late and that was the format we bought the first few in. By the end, we were running out to get the hardbacks when they came out, but I really liked the size, shape and feel of those paperback versions.


Day Twenty-One: Fragile

Hipstamatic: Helga Viking, Ina's 1935

That's my china and crystal that I never use. Ever. Ridiculous. By the way, does anyone else want to pronounce today's theme "fra-gee-lay"? No? OK.


Day Twenty: Hope

Picnik: CinemaScope

Every Saturday we can, we go to our church's contemporary worship center to help with the Manna Charities service which precedes the organization's distribution of food to those in attendance. Actually, Steve helps with tech stuff, the kids "help" in the nursery, and I just absorb the message delivered by one of two preachers. Each Saturday's message touches my heart in a different way than the ones I hear on Sunday. I think it's because there I'm surrounded by people who are truly dependent on the hope that Christ gives. It makes the room feel different.

Seek God. Love People. Live in Hope.



you heard it all here

Introducing my first 8tracks playlist, including almost all of the songs heard, or in one case just seen, here since March of this year. Enjoy! (There is an iPhone app for 8tracks, by the way.)

Day Nineteen: Pressure

Hipstamatic: Lucifer VI, Ina's 1969
Collage made with Diptic

"Pressure"? Easy. My job. Add to the normal stresses of it the confluence of a day off on Monday (PTO on my calendar means "paid time off") and a big project I had to put together over the last couple of days (messy office is mine) while my boss was out at a seminar (dark door is his). I was really feeling it. But, now it's the weekend and the pressure is off until Monday (or possibly today) when he calls because he can't follow what I left for him. Or, if I'm lucky, until Tuesday when I do get back to work and he is trying to do seventeen other things before HIS vacation on Thursday and Friday. Ironic.

Time to share a song which was the other thing I thought of when I saw the topic. This song talks about pressure that lots of us are familiar with.

Why can't you
Be more like your older brother?
Why can't you
Do a little more for Jesus?


Day Eighteen: Weather

Hipstamatic: Lucifer VI, Ina's 1969

I just can't believe the 30 day photo challenge karma worked this time. Last time, I distinctly remembering needing a sunset picture on the one day I was stuck in a meeting during sunset. Yesterday, I actually had to go out of the office for a meeting and I was out while it was raining. Yay!

If it hadn't rained, you would have been looking at cloud pictures, dontcha know?

Please enjoy a great version of a super "rain" song...
I can't stand the rain
Against my window
Bringing back sweet memories
I Can't Stand the Rain by Seal

By the way...I would love to hear if any of you are listening to the songs I've blipped here. I try to embed videos when I can, but there aren't always embeddable and/or appropriate ones around, so blip.fm lets me share a song in a way you can play them when you visit the link. I love music and want to be able to share it in a way that is accessible to those who want to hear it.


Day Seventeen: Time

Hipstamatic: John S, Ina's 1969
Collage made with Diptic

Time is what makes my life routine. Get up at 5 a.m. every weekday. Get Maury up at 5:25 every weekday. Commute starting at 6 a.m. Lunch at 11:15. Commute home at 4:45. And, there are certain timed things based on the day of the week. Dance class. Bible study. Manna service. Sunday School. Church. These things are comforting. The interruption of them during a vacation is both refreshing and distressing.
Keeping time is what I love about running. I time every run. Pushing the start button on the stopwatch at the beginning of a run is what keeps me from slowing to a walk during any part of that run. It's like that button starts the competitor in me, the stubborn person in me, the part of me that says I have to finish what I start.
Time flies as you get older. Someone once explained it to me this way: as you get older, each increment of time is smaller and smaller in comparison to your full experience of time, so it does seem to go by faster. For example, when you are a child of 6, six weeks is a decent size piece of the 6 years you have lived. When you are 60, six weeks is just a drop in the bucket of the 60 years you have lived. None of that makes it any easier to see your babies grow up so fast, but at least it makes sense.
And now...it's time to go.


Day Sixteen: Soundless

Hipstamatic: Buckhorst H1, Ina's 1969
Instagram: Sutro

Feel I'm on the verge of some great truth
Where I'm finally in my place
But I'm fumbling still for proof
And it's cluttering my space
Casting shadows on my face
Wait by Alexi Murdoch


Day Fifteen: Warmth

Hipstamatic: Lucifer VI, Cano Cafenol

I don't drink coffee, but when it's cold (outside or just in my office) I do like a cup of mocha. I just got this new mug from my church so I can represent warmth two ways in one photo. Awwww.