Friday, June 26, 2015

The heart of the matter

The other day, I was going through one of those "woe is me" moments.  You know, where nothing in life is quite like you want it (which is not dramatic in any way whatsoever!) and you feel like no one understands you.  My tendency in those moments is to wallow in them. Because I "deserve" to feel this way and feed the gruesome reality.  But I chose grace instead.  I try so hard to do this all the time, but I don't succeed very often.  I want to do something mundane to try and eradicate the feelings (which never works, by the way)--watch TV, play mindless computer games, read, etc.  But this particular day, I pulled out my Bible because I know that is where attitude and feelings are going to meet TRUTH and be changed for good.  I opened up to Psalm 33 and when I got through reading it, I smiled at God because He knows me so well.  When I wallow, I fall right into the trap of Jeremiah 17:9, which says that "the heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure.  Who can understand it?"  I can't trust the things in my heart, because they always have a bent toward sin.  I have known this truth for a long time and it was no surprise to be reminded on this particular day.  But in Psalm 33, I found a truth that, although I've read before, never had a profound impact on me.  Verse 11 says, "The counsel of the Lord stands forever, the plans of his heart to all generations."  The Lord's heart is not desperately wicked and deceptive.  The Lord's heart is faithful, true, loving, compassionate, slow to anger, abounding in love, steadfast, merciful, etc.  I can trust the plans of the Lord's heart.  I cannot trust the plans of my own heart.  My own heart is wishy-washy and selfish.  It follows the whims of this world far to easily.  The Lord's heart is forever faithful.  Strong.  A rock.  A refuge.  Always.  Always.  Always.  Forever and ever.  Without end.

And at the end of the day, I was content in the Lord.  Praise Him for His patience with my moods and emotions!  And that He will lead me back to His Word time and time again!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

These are the p̶e̶o̶p̶l̶e̶ animals in my neighborhood

Sometimes I think I thrive on clutter. I wouldn't necessarily say this about myself, but everywhere you look, I have "decorations."  So maybe the evidence speaks for itself.  I even have decorations in my car.  Here they are:
The turtle was something I got from a family member.  I also have a similar turtle in my bathroom that is from Guatemala.  I don't know where this one came from.
This giraffe is one I have actually had since I first started driving a long, long time ago.  He is very faded from the sun, but I can't bear to get rid of him, because I'm sentimental like that.  One of my clients once named him "Fuzz."
And the above turtle is Tank.  Although he didn't come from Guatemala, he was used in Guatemala by a friend.  She had a leftover when she got back and gave him to me.  Naturally, he's hung out in my car ever since.
And this turtle/air freshener is the newest edition to my car.  I got it while shopping for some lotion.  I decided the new car needed a new critter!

Nate and Erin's Wedding

I'll give the disclaimer that there are a ton of pictures to this post, but really, it's a wedding so you should kind of expect it!  It was a beautiful day for a wedding and a beautiful couple to watch get married.  We blamed some tears on allergies because allergies were running rampant that week.  Those allergies may have only struck the groom and the best man (his brother) and anyone else who can't watch men cry, but we won't talk anymore about it, lest it embarrass said men!  Here is the happy couple in the midst of their vows:
And on their way down the aisle as Mr. and Mrs. Nathan Luketin:
And the cutest ring bearer you could ever have (not biased coming from his aunt at all!)
I love the look Nate is giving her in this picture:
And a sweet kiss (I'm not usually one to take kissing pictures, but it was sweet!  And hard to be avoided at a wedding)
And a great picture of the back of Erin's dress:
An almost serious family picture, if only we could have gotten Michael to cooperate!
Brothers..and still not serious:
Me and my nephews.  At least someone can be serious in this family!
All ring bearered out!
Grandma and the boys:

Between the wedding and reception, we went to my grandma's house because it was so close to the church.  Nate and Erin and the bridal party took a trolley around to take pictures.  They stopped at Grandma's house to take pictures.  Grandma didn't go to the wedding, for many reasons which aren't all that important here, but it was a big deal that she agreed to come outside to take pictures.  My mom was quick to inform me that Grandma would kill me if she knew I posted these pictures on Facebook that day, and now I'm putting them on my blog.  Lucky for me, my grandma doesn't own a computer.
I almost lost it bawling to see these pictures actually happen.  You'd just have to know my grandma to understand.  It was one of the sweetest moments of the day for me.
Lots of the family stopped by while we waited for the reception.  Here is Meg and I:
I even got to sit next to her during the reception!  This was in the middle of the shenanigans that happened during the reception.  Not that we are a family known for shenanigans, I promise!
My cousin Michele and I:
The three girl cousins.  So many pictures of the three of us.  And now we can honestly say we like each other!  Meg was hit or miss for awhile growing up! :)  What, she was four/five years younger than us and just a little bit of a pest!  But we love her now.  We couldn't fake that in a picture!
Shenanigans may have been happening even before the wedding began.
Michael decided to eat his goldfish with a spoon because we were at a fancy place.
I think they love each other?! :)
Somehow, by the time dinner arrived, Ann ended up with a bunch of knives and a spoon.  But we couldn't really say why...
This kid is a ham.  He has been perfecting his wink, so whenever he does it, he does it with great exaggeration, which makes him all the more adorable.
Again, I promise they love each other!
Passing the time while we waited for dinner: Spoon (or fork) on the nose.  It's a good skill to have!
As you can see from all the pictures, we had a blast celebrating Nate and Erin and spending time with our family!