Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Day 16 - A song that makes you cry

This video that goes with this song is about Sgt. James Holtom who was taken home to be with the Lord in 2007 while he was in Iraq. He was one of Paul's best friends and an amazing man. His fiance is one of my friends and is a courageous, beautiful, and inspiring woman.

This song and video combined makes me cry every time I see it. Thank you for your service and example, Jim!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Day 15 - Your Role Model

ummm...excuse my tardiness with this post. I want to say I have been terribily busy with grad school - but I finished that on Tuesday. I want to say it has been with the officer retreat I was conducting with my students after school -but school got cancelled due to inclement weather. It could be I was shopping - but no, I have been done since November. I guess I will just blame it on the snow (like many in VA) and say I was so busy inside enjoying a four day weekend helping spread Christmas spirit and decorations throughout the house. Yes, that sounds good. We'll go with that one...

And now back to the 30 day challenge...

When I first saw this topic, I honestly have to say that a lot of people/characters came to my mind. It seems that one could have a role model in almost every aspect of your life. However, if I had to narrow it down to one person, I would probably choose the Virtuous Woman (aka the Proverbs 31 woman). I admit that sometimes I loathe her as she seems almost unatainable but overall, she is an inspiration to me for these reasons.

#1. "The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life (vs 11-12). Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land (vs 23). Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her (vs 28)."

Because we have no children, my focus is obviously my husband. Paul's career requires a certain appearance all the time, and this is not just from him. As an officer wife, I can play a tremendous influence in my husband's career and am looked upon all the time. I read once that you loose all rights to go out to the mailbox in your pj's with no makeup. You are to be presentable at all time outside of the home as an officer wife - wow!

#2. "She seeketh woold, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands. She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar. She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens. She considereth a field and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard. She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms" (vs. 13-17).

This woman is not a dumb or under-educated. Buying a field is no small undertaking people. There are nutrients to assess, type of soil, location of water tables, average wind speed and temperatures, etc. Being a woman is no excuse to be dumb and just because you stay at home does not mean that you lose all rights to your brain. You are a help meet to your husband, not a hinderance. This woman knew finances and how to work hard. She is self sufficient so that "her husband safely trusts in her" (vs. 11). I am on my soap box now (but this is my blog...).

Why is it that many Christian circles think that a woman is to be weak and dependant upon her husband for sustinence. Don't get me wrong, I am not saying women should not marry or be career focused, but what is wrong with being well educated and staying at home after you have children? If the home is the greatest mission field for the woman, shouldn't the woman be prepared to serve in that area? If she cannot handle the finances, what will she do if something happens to her husband. If she has no trade, what will happen when her husband becomes ill and cannot work? I am disgusted with some homeschool families (remember I was one and am not against doing it the right way) that think math for their girls is going to the grocery store and completing a recipe. Others still say that college is for the MRS. degree. I think some Christians are twisting the Virituous Woman into the dumb, barefoot, and pregnant stereotype (and now I am off my box...).

#3. "Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised. Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates" (vs. 30-31).

Simply put, she feareth the Lord. Becasue she feareth the Lord, she lives to a certain standard with everything that she does. She works her hardest at everything and gives God the glory for it. She does not do it for public praise, but for the glory of her Heavenly Father and family.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Day 14 - A Non-Fictional Book

The Bible, King James Version of course. It is not just the greatest book of all time, but it is our written word from our Lord. It not only contains wise information in Psalms and Proverbs but it also contains the way towards a relationship with our God.

No other book has been fought over.

No other book has had blood shed for it's contents.

No other book chronicles the life of the one perfect person ever to walk on earth (or water!).

No other book can change lives the way this book can.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Day 13 - A Fictional Book

For those of you who are totally out of touch with reading and don't know what fiction is; here is a simple definition... IT IS NOT REAL! :) Okay, now that we got that covered...

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen is one of my all time favorite books. This book is perfect for a rainy/snowy weekend. It is an easy read for the most part, however, if you are not keen on old English you may want to have a dictionary close by. Oh how I wish I could write like Jane Austen!

I love how it is written in the fact that you are almost transported back to that time period. The author does a marvelous job of setting the characters up so you almost know what they are going to do. When I read this book, I can almost picture certain people I know as these characters. The storyline is timeless.

When I read this book, it makes me want to go back to those times and yet at the same time I am grateful for what we have in the 21st century. I like the simplicity of life, but yet it was hard work. The men were chivalrous, ladies were real ladies, and most people knew right from wrong. People worked hard for what they had and made sacrifices for the love of others.

Happy Reading!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Day 12 - Something you're OCD about

That one is easy....


Every time I come inside from being outside, I wash my hands. When I get gas, I hand sanitize. When I go to a restaurant and touch the menus, I wash my hands. After shaking hands at church, after using the facilities, after shopping, after opening the mail, after working out, after touching money, and constantly when I am cooking. I get really germ-o-phobic about other people and their lack of hand washing. My hubby gets a little perturbed with me for this as (a) he is a guy and (b) he could care less. My hands look like seventy year old woman hands in the winter, but hey, they are clean! :)

Friday, December 10, 2010

Day 11 - A Recent Photo of Me

I looked at my camera and this was the most recent photo I have of me. It was taken last Saturday at the Spotsylvania Christmas Parade. These are three of my students in front of the tractor that pulled our float. Here is a better picture of the float...

I am so proud of these guys and girls!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Day 10 - A Picture Of Me More Than 10 Years Old

Yes, I am styling the purple pants, green shirt, and green backpack. This photo is taken above Stanley, Idaho at 11,000 feet. Dad took us up to glass Mountain Goats for a day one summer. I love this photo - just wish my Mom was in it...alas, someone had to take the picture! :)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Day 9 - A picture that you took

I took this picture on a spring day before finals in 2008. This is Utah State University's quad and I love this picture so much! It is my desktop on both our laptops and even my school laptop. Love Cache Valley and can't wait to go back!

Day 8 - Picture that makes my heart melt

This photo of Lucy at five weeks old makes me smile every time I see it. She is such a sweet little girl.

This picture of Paul and I is one of the first after we were married on our honeymoon in Kauai. Good memories! :)

Day 7 - A photo that makes you angry/sad

This photo is very graphic but it needs to be shown. People don't realize how terrible abortion is. This makes me so angry and sad. So many people want children and cannot have them. These little people do not even have the chance to speak or voice their opinion. Criminals have more rights than them.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Day 6 - 20 of My Favorite Things

These are a few of my favorite things (sung with a Julie Andrews voice)... and are not in order.

1. Dark chocolate covered pomegranates from Costco
2. Hickory Farm's Beef Summer Sausage
3. Snow
4. Reading a good book inside while it is storming outside
5. Reading a good book at the park
6. A comfy down comforter
7. The feeling after finishing another semester
8. Watching my students "get it" and become excited about the material
9. Sleeping in on a Saturday morning
10. Feeling the Holy Spirit move in a church service
11. The feeling after doing what you are supposed to be doing even when you don't feel like doing it.
12. Waking up to my husband there
13. Cooking a fantastic meal and getting "the" compliment from Paul
14. Playing the piano to release emotions
15. Having a student tell me that I'm their favorite teacher
16. Talking to my parents on the phone (would prefer in person...)
17. When our puppy hears the alarm go off and jumps on me to signal the start of the day.
18. Starbuck's Peppermint White Chocolate Mocha
19. Knowing that God will never leave me or forsake me
20. Outdoor activities (skiing, hunting, camping, hiking, etc)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Day 5 - Your Favorite Quote

I can't decide between these two:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
Robert Frost


No one cares how much you know,
until they know how much you care.
Theodore Roosevelt

Friday, December 3, 2010

Day 4 - Your Favorite Boook

This one is so extremely hard to choose just ONE book. I mean, come on! I love to read! Almost every Christian would say the Bible, as will I. Some days I just love to curl up with a book by Christian author Ted Dekker. When Paul is gone for long bouts, I seem to always find a Nicholas Sparks book to read. However, the classics like Pride and Prejudice are always a great alternative to the hectic lifestyle of the 21st century. Have you ever read the real Grimm Brother's stories? They are very odd and nothing like Disney portraits, but, they are ever so fun to read aloud in the car while the other one drives. I love Stephen and Sean Covey's "7 Habits" books and I do confess I am reading a little Dan Brown right now (cringe).

But if there is one book I could choose, it would be my Nook. I know, I know, it isn't a "real" book. But, it does hold so many books for me to enjoy at my every whim. I always carry it with me just in case I get that spare second to read. I absolutely love my Nook and recommend it to anyone that enjoys to read.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Day 3 - Your Favorite Teacher

I have three favorite teachers that I would like to share...I am so breaking these rules...

1. My favorite university teacher would be Dr. Brian Warnick. He is patient with every student and truly makes you feel like you are the most important student he has. Dr. Warnick empowers pre-service agricultural teachers to inspire the youth of tomorrow as he leads by example. Dr. Warnick allowed me to student teach out in Virginia and even flew all the way out to observe my classroom. His teaching style is very similar to what I hope that I can one day imitate.

2. Mr. Steve Wilder and Mrs. Erika Cowman were my agricultural teachers in high school that really made a difference in my life. They both encouraged me to participate in the National FFA Organization and gave so much of their time to see other students succeed. Their teaching strategies were very different from one another, however, they both gave teaching their all and made concepts easy to understand. In short, these two individuals are the big reason that I am teaching agriculture today.

3. My third favorite teacher is my my Mom. My Mom taught me from first grade all the way until I graduated high school. She cared so much about my sister's and my education that she became a teacher at home. My Mom researched the most challenging curriculum and had us participate in extra curricular activities (such as 4-H; guitar and piano lessons; & home-school skiing, P.E., skating, and theater). It is not easy teaching and I cannot imagine teaching your own kids correctly. There are a lot of parents who do not home-school sufficiently; but my Mom is not one of those. Love you, Mom!

Coming tomorrow... Your Favorite Book (this is going to be hard)!!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Day 2 ~ Your definition of success

The favorable culmination of hard work and dedication upon achieving a goal.