Saturday, December 29, 2012

Christmas is a wonderful time of the year. We have a few things that are the same every year, like the manger scene and Daddy reading to everyone and Midnight Mass, but for the most part you never know what is going to happen. Last year my sister brought several people home (mostly international) from school, this year, however, was just our family. It was nice to be together again. My Dad, one sister, two brothers, and towards the end mom got a bad case of the flu. Anna and I stayed with Grandma, trying to not catch it and we weren't around too much. By Christmas day everyone was pretty much better. We had a great day, and were surprised by a visit from my Aunt and Uncle. That night I got colllld, and it was obvious I was sick too. Since then I've been laying around. Today is the first day I feel somewhat good...I'll be so glad when the sickness is gone. God bless y'all! Enjoy the pictures.

Every year we have Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve; such a wonderful night! Church usually ends right at about 12 am Christmas morning, but this year we were a little late in starting and it was closer to 12:30-1am.

Awww...sleeping baby

This year most of us wrapped presents in newspaper to save money, and because nobody remembered to buy paper until it was too late, I found some fun Christmas themes.





Christmas morning breakfast: coffee (before I got cream, real fresh cows cream [be jealous], I do not like black coffee) and pancakes with maple syrup. Yum.

The cat on the right did not want to be on the couch or have ribbons on. It was kind of humorous, until she decided to bite at me.

kitty paws.

Someone got a little excessive with the paper...



My little sister made a poem book, mostly filled with her own poetry.

Daddy read the Christmas story.

Feasting time!

Fresh, Florida oranges. SO good.


Well, that's it for now. 'Later!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

And He Shall Be Called


Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Of the greatness of his government and peace

    there will be no end.

He will reign on David’s throne

    and over his kingdom,
establishing and upholding it
    with justice and righteousness
    from that time on and forever.
The zeal of the Lord Almighty
    will accomplish this.





Merry Christmas, folks! As you cherish this day in history, celebrating with your family, remember to say a prayer of thanks to God on high for the birth of his Son. It's a blessed thing indeed that He humbled himself to be born as a babe-fully God, yet still fully man. It's the great mystery of the world. God Bless!

And the Angels cried with a loud voice...

Glory to God on high and on earth, peace, goodwill toward men.



Merry Christmas, folks! As you cherish this day in history, celebrating with your family, remember to say a prayer of thanks to God on high for the birth of his Son. It's a blessed thing indeed that He humbled himself to be born as a babe-fully God, yet still fully man. It's the great mystery of the world. God Bless!

Monday, December 17, 2012

the day we went exploring.

First of all, I do want to apologize for a couple of things. 1.) If any of you looked at my blog in the past week, you may have noticed a completely different layout, name, and header pictures (that were obviously not mine and one not very nice pic) I'm sorry. I would say that I didn't know, but I did. I got tired of blogger's templates, and uploaded a new one from a different site. I really like the layout of it, and never got around to changing the pictures because I was focusing on my website design (!!). To be honest, I forgot about it, then I planned on making the blog private temporarily and couldn't find where to do that...so I'm sorry if you saw the blog like it was, but it's all back to normal. :) I am working on a new site, with my own domain and new look, so be on the lookout for that sometime soon! 2.) I'm so sorry I haven't posted much. The plan was to have the new site up and post on it, annnd well, it's not ready yet. I decided to go ahead a keep posting here until I get that up and working. So, I'm back.
Thanks for sticking with me!
Enough rambling, without further ado, the day we went exploring...


So there's this house on the way to town that people say is haunted. My family doesn't believe it though. And my sisters and I are constantly arguing who gets the house to live in when we grow up. Needless to say, I've always wanted to explore it. What you can't see in this picture is a balcony and front porch, which has old Victorian trim. So cool. 





One thing I want to point out: the wall color. I love their choice of wall colors, in all the rooms! And with it being old, and paint peeling, it was even prettier. 

My dear friend, Kat

Adding a little color to the post. :)




Hmmm...let's see if anybody is home.



Sunday, December 9, 2012

A Bit of a Problem

Hey there! I haven't forgotten you all, but I did run into a problem that hinders me from posting. Well, posting pictures anyways. I've run out of free photo space in Picasa photo albums, which is what my pictures are loaded on when I put them on the blog. I'm trying to figure this out, and have considered moving this blog to a new one, but I don't want to loose all my followers! :) If anyone knows how to resolve this problem, and would like to let me know how, that would be great. Just leave a comment on here, or shoot me an email (photographybynl@gmail.com) if it's too long. Thank you!
~Sveta D.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Walking on Water | Loving God With Our Whole Being

Pardon moi for the random-ness or 'rabbit trails' of this post. I tried to keep it all [somewhat] on topic and make a good point in the end. I've started this post three times, each time deleting every word not quite knowing what to write. Here I go again, trying to get some inspiration out. It's not that God hasn't been working in my life in the past weeks; quite the opposite, actually. It is hard to put into words that make sense sometimes. 

I really love this picture (below) I took on vacation last week. A young girl running into the crashing waves, and sea-gulls starting their ascent into the heavens. This lighting is just right, the clouds are perfect. It has the glorious morning light, though you cannot see the sun - you know it has risen just hours before from the way the light shines in. Christianity is like that sometimes, you cannot see God per-say, but you simply know He is there, just from what we see in the nature or life's experiences. I like the little conversation, from a movie called 'August Rush', that is between a young boy, August, and older man, Wizard. It goes something like this: (talking about music all around us.) August asks, "And only some of us can hear it?" Wizard's reply was: "Only some of us are listening." This can be applied to our Christian faith. People talk about God not listening to them, or them 'just not hearing God speaking'. God is all around us; He is bigger than the universe; He is everywhere. Another way to put it is, "Where is He not?" God speaks to every one of us, in some way, shape, or form; but, maybe we just aren't listening. 

"Well," you might say, "I read my Bible every day. I got to church every week." That, my friend, is not what makes you a Christian or hear God speaking. Don't misunderstand me though, God may use these things as a way to speak, but you have to be listening for it. I learned this first-hand, as I read my Bible every day, but never got anything from it. And went to church every week, yet never came home learning anything significant. You have to really want Christ, to get him. You have to put your heart into your faith, to really get faith. Another Wizard quote is, "You gotta love music more than you love food. More than life. More than yourself." You have to love God more than your food. More than your technology. More than your life. You gotta love God with your whole being - heart, soul, mind, and strength. Christianity transforms you, and it's a free gift. It's well worth eternal life to love God. All you have to do is love Him, for real and certain. And He will transform you like never before. It won't be easy, though, but completely worth it. Jesus is so amazing. 

So to tie it all up, and bring us back to where we started: this picture? It shows courage and faith. The little girl is going to run into that roaring ocean without fear of being swallowed up, because she knows she will not. She's going to'walk on the water', step out of her comfort zone, and live life to the fullest. I desire to know Christ better and better every day. I'm going to step outside of my comfort zone, live life to the fullest, and with all my being live for Jesus. People say it's impossible to walk on water, but I disagree. I'm going to take the leap of faith and 'walk on water'. How about you?



Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Awake, awake our hearts to hear the echos,
Your words resound at the dawning.
And all day we taste a love that is undying,
And all day in praise for the morning light.
Phil Keaggy//Morning Light
 

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Simply An Ordinary Christian

"Wurmbrand has brought into the universal Church a new dimension, reminding it about the martyrs." -Church Times, London

"Wurbrand is anew St. John the Baptist...a voice crying in the wilderness." -Christianity Today, USA

"Except for the Bible, nothing has shaken me like Wurmbrand's Tortured for Christ. It is a message of the century. Even more: since the persecution of Christians by Nero, it is the most powerful act of Martyrs."-Dr. Kurt Koch

My Dad has told me a few times in the past months that I should read one of Richard Wurmbrand's books titiled, The Oracles of God. I was putting it off, reading this or that. But last night I crawed into bed ready to continue reading Let Me Be a Woman, by Elizabeth Elliot, (Great book, by the way, a must read for every lady in the universe!) and realized I had left it at the house. (I sleep at my Grandma's house.) "Ahh...I'll just go to sleep a little early," I thought, igoring Wurmbrand's book by my bed, "The extra will be really nice, actually." Then tonight when I was ready to contine on in Elliot's book, yeah, you guessed it, I had still forgotten to bring it over to the cabin. Eyeing Wurmbrand's book, I thought, this time "Okay. I'll check it out, but this is annoying. I want to finish all the other though-provoking books I've started." So I opened the cover, and began reading the first couple pages: quotes people said about Wurmbrand. From them, I concluded, that he is a really amazing, God-fearing, Warrior-Poet man. Well, I already knew that, but it was stil fun reading them. (Actually, I think I met him when I was a baby. I know I at least met his wife because there's a picture of her holdin me, but that's a different story.) But what caught my attention was the last quote, by Wurmbrand himself: "What I have to say about myself is much simpler: I am an ordinary Christian who lived in very unusual circumstances." He wasn't out to get any fame, he wasn't out to please man. He was simply out to follow Christ with his all. He learned something many of us only grasp in a small way, and that is to love. It wasn't any kind of love though, it was to love God with every part of himself, and the side affect of that was to love all of God's creations. We can never truly love until we love God with everything we are, and Wurmbrand saw this and really loved Christ. Richard Wurmbrand was simply and ordinary Christian living for the Glory of God. Now that takes an extra-ordinary man. And you know what? You can be one too.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Grateful for...

Saturday, the 10th: Mornings off work to sleep in; and days spent with my little sisters and brother.
 
Sunday, the 11th: God's unfailing love, and His never ending works through the sermons this year.
 
Monday, the 12th: The ability to learn, and my parents who put up with my failings in school but never give up. This year has been the best so far,  and it's only because they never gave up on me.
 
Tuesday, the 13th: The bright, blue-eyed old man at the Nursing Home who reminded me of a dear (pretty much a Grandpa) friend who died a few years back.
 
Wednesday, the 14th: Being able to get new glasses, for free because of medicare.
 
Thursday, the 15th: The ability to walk, and long exploration trecks through the woods with my family
 
Friday: A job to earn money, and finding a new computer for a good price.

I'm in a bit of a rush right now as I'm hurridly typing this before I head off to work. But I'll leave you with one though: "The Truth is heavy, therefore few care to carry it" -Winston Churchill Are you a seeker of what the truth is? Or do you just comply with 'whatever'? What are you thankful for today?

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The [not so little anymore] little girls

Last week my little brother and sisters went to a cabin where I would be taking family pictures for someone at. I was checking out the place, and lighting. It was a lovely place, and the family portraits went great the next day. (I don't think I'll be sharing them on the blog though. Sorry!) Anyways, here's a few shots I took of my sisters. Enjoy! 






And one goofy one with the little bro



Friday, November 9, 2012

Give Thanks | Part Uno

Dear God,
I just want to take a moment,
not to ask you for anything, 
but to say
 Thank You
 for all I have.

I know it's a cliche thing in the month of November to do a 'what-i'm-thankful-for-today'. It's great to remember to give thanks, but really, we should do this everyday. Maybe that'll be a New Years resolution for me: To be thankful everyday, and tell people, not just in the month of November. But you know how resolutions go...hey though, I think the first will be to actually do the resolutions. [smile] Anyways, instead of posting everyday on facebook, I'm going to post on hear every Friday of November. (Didn't do last Friday because it was only the second day of the month...) What are you thankful for? Take a moment, and think about it. 

November 1: Early mornings working on the farm. I am not a person that likes to get out of bed in the morning, but when I do, and have a quiet hour all to myself, I love it. So all summer long when I had to get up earlier to be at work by 8am, I despised it. But in the end, I kind of liked having a reason to get up. The mornings are so beautiful! Especially during Autumn. 

November 2: My dad's work office, and his boss who lets me use it so I don't have to bike four miles to work. I love to bike, but its so much more convenient to go to work with Dad and sit in his office to do school, blog, etc... before I head off to work at 10:30. It's onle a 15 minute walk. Anyways, I'm so thankful for the use of the office twice a week.

November 3: A good job, great employers, and yummy food. That basically describes my job at the restaurant. God gave me the job when I needed it, and I'm ever so thankful. 

November 4: This song, and the Piano Guys: 



November 5: Another good job, with another great employer, and maybe the co-workers aren't so bad either. :) My second job this summer ended on Monday; it was working at an organic farm. I learned a lot this summer working there, and wouldn't trade the experience/lessons for anything. 

November 6: For the freedom in the country to vote, even if I do think that the electoral college needs to be booted out because it's not really needed anymore. But it is a huge privilege to vote. (although, I'm too young to yet...)

November 7: My sister, and long phone conversations with her while she's away at college. This girl is a huge blessing in my life. Probably more than she knows. (so hey, Anna, if you read this...thanks for being you.) We may not see the same on some things, but we'll always be sisters and friends, for life. 

November 8: My parents. My facebook status last night was this: 'God knew what He was doing when he gave me the parents he did; no one else I know would/will love me like them, listen like them, and stand by my side in what I believe strongly about. I love them so much.' Pretty much sums it all up.

November 9: Coffee. 'nuff said. Oh wait, and fresh cream. 


Thursday, November 8, 2012

Life as of Late (in cell phone pics)


~Picked up the violin more lately
~Work on the farm
~Collecting leaves
~Reading [thoughtful] books
~Schoolwork
~Family game nights
~Eye appointments, 
and trying on fun glasses
~Fun hats 
~Church basketball games
~Long phone calls with the sista
~Studying of Swahili, and Spanish
~Dreams of what may come
~Prayers said in tears
~Memories of great Saints in my life
~Stargazing
~Reminders of God's great love
~Little miracles
~Fresh cream, and hot coffee
~Remembering to live in the now


Sunday, November 4, 2012

Scavenger Hunt Sunday

1. Wild
My wild little siblings. :) Noo..the stove wasn't hot yet. In fact, since its a soapstone you can pretty much lean up against it all the time. And it keeps the house really warm. Nice deal, huh? 

2. Welcome
Welcome to the weather of wood fires. We don't use any electric heat, and for a couple weeks now we've had the cook stove going. Just this week, though, I started the first fire (and my first one of this year) in the big stove (pictured above). I love starting fires and hearing the wood cracking...

3. Adventure
This little guy is one of my favorite people in the world. He and I have been 'buddies' since the day he was born. (Although last night he left me for his dad saying he had a new buddy.) Anyways, he's my boss' families littlest boy...and life is full of adventure with this redhead around!

4. Vibrant
I did my first pinterest project. Mod-podge leaves in a mason jar and put a candle in. The light give such a vibrant color with the bright leaves.

5. Classic
Dr. Seuss is such a classic writer. I'll never tire reading his books. One of my friends nick-names is Kat, and when I put together her folder for the Christmas play this year I couldn't resist drawing The Kat in the Hat on it. :)

On a different note: I started a blog for my writing. I don't really like to put long articles on here since it's more for photography, but I hope you'll check it out sometime: www.lovemeetsjustice.blogspot.com
Feel free to comment with your thoughts on my articles, and agree or disagree. I always love a good debate. :) Be blessed. -Sveta D.