Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Blogs You Must See

Hi there!
I've been meaning to do this post for a while, I got the idea for it at Madison's Musings, which is the first blog on my list. :)
These blogs are written by absolutely wonderful girls, and getting to know them and their amazing, beautiful personalities has been an incredibly enjoyable experience for me. :) Here goes:

Madison is a cheerful, interesting, and very engaging writer. She leaves lots of comments which are always complimentary. Her blog is a delightful mixture of art, daybook entries, newsy posts, thoughtful posts, videos, and many other things. You must stop by and leave her a will be glad you did. :) I'm on there every time she writes a new post.

Joanna is one of my very dearest friends. She lives just an hour away and her family is one of the most spontaneous, joyful, hospitable, welcoming and wonderful families I have ever been blessed to meet. Her blog marks down important events like her parents' anniversary and family members' birthdays. She also writes very thought-provoking articles on matters of importance. :) Love you Joanna!!
Jasmine is the 18-year-old biblically feminine, amazingly smart 18-year-old we all hope to be or wish we had been. :) Her view on the world is both stirring and refreshing. Her blog has a new post on it nearly every day, on all sorts of topics. I highly reccomend that you stop by and take your time to browse among all the articulate and edifying articles there.

Abigail and Lauren write here, and the story behind the name is so sweet it made me want to cry. :) You can find it on their 'about pearls and diamonds' page. They have lots of wisdom to impart, along with delicious recipes and all sorts of interesting articles.

Kaysie is one of the dearest girls I have ever had the pleasure to read about. Her blog is a sweet, wholesome place to visit, and she does a new post nearly every day on something relating to the Lord. Her insights and thoughts are so beautiful. This is truly a blog that glorifies the Lord in everything it does.

Here you will find sweet Ella writing. You will definitely enjoy reading here, Ella has articles on subjects of all kinds and all of it is fascinating. :) I simply insist that you stop by and check it out. :)

Mia has a very wonderful, gentle and loving personality that shows through all of her posts. She has a multitude of very beautiful old-fashioned pictures on her blog that I love to just look at! :) She does posts about things like antiques she's found, gardening tips and pictures, and very easy-to-follow, delicious recipes!

Ah, Joelle, what would we do without her? :) Joelle has a very unique, interesting personality. I love reading her blog. Joelle's blog posts always have the weirdest, funniest titles, and she posts lovely pictures of all sorts of things. Her family recently adopted two darling little girls, and from their pictures they look like the dearest little things imaginable. :)

I had the pleasure of meeting Mckenzie at the last Father/Daughter retreat hosted by Vision Forum. She is such a sweet young lady! Her blog has a down-home, comfortable atmosphere. She loves horses and there are pictures of hers on the blog. She also has some adorable siblings! (including a very mischeivous 2-year-old) :)
There are a lot of other girls with blogs that I really like, but unfortunately I didn't have the time to do them all! :( Just know that if I leave a comment on your blog, I really like it! :)

Mama's Chili Recipe

Alas, the secret is out! Here's the recipe for the most mouth-watering, delicious chili ever! (IMHO)

  • 2 cans tomato sauce
  • 1 can light red kidney beans
  • 1 can dark red kidney beans
  • 1 and a half cups of water
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 Tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 and 1/2 pounds pre-cooked ground beef or beef chunks like you put in stew
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup chopped green bell pepper

First you must open the cans of kidney beans and tomato sauce and pour them into the pot.

(Don't drain the kidney beans, just pour it all in)

chop up 1 cup green bell pepper and 1 cup onion

(Don't touch your eyes while chopping up the onion!! Ouch!)
Saute the onion and pepper in water
Measure out your spices...
...and add them to the pot. (stir)
Take your 1 and 1/2 pounds of beef (or more, if you like meaty chili) and add that to the pot.
When the onion and pepper is done sauteing, add that to the pot also ...
Simmer on medium-low for approximately 30 minutes, or at least until the flavors blend and the kidney beans are all cooked.
Then... ENJOY!
(Goes excellently with noodles, potatoes, crackers, or nacho chips & cheese)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Polka Dots and Introducing Chef Steven...

An interesting title to be sure... but I have good reason for my unusual statement.
First of all, here is a picture of the new bedspread I found in a shop in North Carolina...

Yes, that is actually my room. Well, half of it, anyway.
And now, for the other part of the post.
Steven received a very funny, engaging cookbook for his birthday from my paternal grandmother. He was inspired into a new hobby, cooking, a few months ago when we watched the movie "Ratatouille"... and in the cookbook is an actual recipe for the dish Ratatouille Nicoise, So we decided to cook it for lunch today!

It's kind of like vegetable stew/stir fry! Complete with eggplant, zucchini, tomatoes, olives, celery, onions, salt & pepper, sugar, red wine vinegar, and lemon juice.
I love Steven in this picture... he looks so "Chef-y"
Look at his face in this next picture... he's savoring the delicate flavors. Mama and I also tried making some Hummus, and it came out tasting so exquisite! Yum!! I loved it! We added some black olives for fun. I don't have a close-up picture of that, but you can see it on the table in this picture...


Monday, October 20, 2008


First of all, I changed my blog background! :) I really wanted a change... I was getting tired of the orange. :) Now If I could find a red-based fall background I would be completely satisfied, but orange is just really not me. So....what do you think? I'm sorry to dissappoint the girls who voted on the other background... I think I shall do it sometime a few months hence...

And while I'm posting, I thought I'd share a few pictures from my day yesterday with you.
My family and I went to Callaway Gardens and enjoyed the outdoors! They had some very pretty marigolds there that I got some very nice pictures of...
Purple, too!

And Pink! And a gorgeous, glowing, orangey-gold!


Sunday, October 19, 2008


No, I am not running for president and I never plan on doing so and all political comments will be deleted. :D LOL. Not really, but please don't turn this into a political discussion.

This is what I want you to vote on.

Which template?


2)3) The orangey one I have now.

Please, please vote! I like both of the new ones and am having an awful time choosing which one to try! :)


The Glories of Creation

What do you think about when you watch a sunset?

The sky glows, the moon may peek out, if you're by the water it reflects the colors brilliantly displayed in the heavens above...

God paints a new sunset every evening. And what is really amazing is that there are billions of different perspectives from all over the earth, so it doesn't look the same to everyone.
Up north there is a spectacular phenomenon that happens at night called "The Northern Lights", properly known as Aurora Borealis. Glowing swirls and streaks of color light up the sky. No wonder the Eskimos worshipped it...
But it wasn't a god in itself. God shows himself through his creation. You can not possibly deny that there is a creator when you look around at all the wonders of this world we live in. I heard once of a man who believed in God after studying the intricate workings of the human ear.
It takes more faith to believe that the earth just spontaneously happened than to believe that the Lord created it with a special plan in mind.
KJV Psalm 97 verses 1-6 "The LORD reigneth, let the earth rejoice, let the multitude of isles be glad thereof. Clouds and darkness are round about him, righteousness and judgement are the habitation of his throne. A fire goeth before him, and burneth up his enemies round about. His lightnings enlightened the world: The earth saw, and trembled. The hills melted like wax at the presence of the LORD, at the presence of the Lord of the whole earth. The heavens declare his righteousness, and all the people see his glory."

Thank you for taking the time to read my post today. :) I'd be very happy to know what you thought of this.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Muddy, Wet, Cold...FUN!

Delightful fun is not always ...dry.

Now I have you confused after that last statement. Let me explain.

Yesterday, My family and I drove up to the delightful city where Joanna and Sarah and Justus live as we usually do once a week or once every other week...depending on our exhaustion level. :) Yesterday, however, was very wet. VERY wet. VERY VERY WET. It had been raining all night and all day and was still drizzling at 7:00pm when we went out to the Frisbee Field.

"Aha! Frisbee!" You say, "Now I see where she's going with this!" Yes.

We played Ultimate Frisbee in the dark, in the rain, and in the 2 inches of water all over the grassy field. We're such diehards. Or diewets, as I cleverly remarked. :)

"And you were miserable, right?" WRONG! I had SO much fun! I've never played better frisbee, and actually had a distinct advantage over the other players who had taken off their glasses because of the rain. I can see in the dark fairly well, and since I didn't have my sneakers on as usual (they would only have gotten soaked and muddy) I could dig in my toes into the wet grass and run and dodge about fairly well! :) :)

I could have sat in the car, miserable and bored, because I didn't want to 'get wet'.

But I didn't. I got out there, braved the elements, and had a fantastic time!

I have a point to make out of all this. Sometimes you have to be a little bit uncomfortable. But if you ignore it and press on in spite of difficulty, you may find that it was entirely worth it.

Just my little thought for the day. :)


Friday, October 17, 2008

I've Been Tagged Yet Again!

This time by Jasmine. Thank you Jasmine! I love tags. :)

State six things you have learned this year.
Tag at least six people.
Leave comments on their blogs letting them know they've been tagged.
All right, Six things that I have learned this year are:
  • 1. I have learned that Math can actually be useful (haha)
  • 2. I have acquired better kitchen skills since last year
  • 3. I have learned how to blog - I started this blog last June.
  • 4. I have learned how to play Ultimate Frisbee which is very fun!!
  • 5. I attended the Vision Forum Father/Daughter retreat last April and I discovered that there is a very large number of other young women out there who have the same convictions that I do, which was immensely encouraging!
  • 6. I have learned that God can sustain me through difficult times when something goes wrong.
And I hereby tag:
Mia, Madison, Lillie, Laney, Kaysie, and Waiting-Rose. And if you're reading this but you are not on my tag list, you are completely welcome to do it as well! :)

Thursday, October 16, 2008


Sometimes, life is hectic.

There are stresses and problems and aggravations and annoyances and lots of things that are purposely thrown in your path to drag you down. We have an enemy out there who is more than happy when our day goes down the drain.

Ephesians 6:12, KJV "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places."

But in the midst of all this turmoil and confusion, we can remain at peace.

John 14:27 KJV "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." Those are the words of Jesus spoken to the disciples.

God loves us SO much. There are not words in any tongue to describe how much he loves us. His thoughts of each of us are more in number than all the grains of sand.

It doesn't matter what happens right now, on this earth. We have a heavenly Father who has the whole world in his hands... so why are we striving?

Peace is a precious thing, and sometimes it seems hard to find. But if you stop and ask the Lord to give you peace, suddenly ...there it is. It really works, I've tried it myself. :)

I'm really not sure why I did this post... it was just lying on my heart and I thought I would share it with you. I'd like to know what you thought of my little rambling here, if you'd like to leave a comment.


Jane Austen Heroes

All right, readers, you only have 31 more days to vote on my sidebar for your favorite Jane Austen Hero! So far Mr. Darcy has an outrageous lead with 60% of the votes... See my sidebar for the poll!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Lydia at A Walk In The Rain has tagged me! Yay!! (here's a little secret...I absolutely adore tags!) So does Jasmine. (haha...I'm spreading the word!) But don't tag Ella. She always gets tagged and probably needs a break. :o)

I am: A Daughter at home
I know: my Christ Jesus loves me and I love him!
I have: the best parents ever and two great little brothers!
I wish: to be married someday and be blessed with little children.
I hate: the sticky mess of politics, the dark circles which appear underneath my eyes when I don't sleep well, and unsatisfying book endings.
I miss: my dear friend Rebecca who I left behind in Florida
I fear: things that go bump in the night (haha)
I feel: deeply, although I may not always act like it
I hear: that someone is reading this post
I smell: my apple-scented 'body splash', at present
I crave: a strawberries & cream toaster strudel... or chocolate
I search: for really good books to read
I wonder: where we left our National Treasure DVD which is currently missing...
I regret: the fact that I need to drop a few pounds
I love: many things!
I am not: Condemning, mean, or unpleasant to be around.
I believe: Romans 10:9, "If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thy heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved."
I dance: often, usually around my bedroom but sometimes with Joanna in the end zone when our Frisbee team scores a touchdown
I sing: as often as possible
I cry: when I'm hurting.
I don't always: remember to turn the dryer on after I load it with wet laundry, causing Mama dear much trouble
I fight: against being bossy
I write: in a Diary almost every day and on the blog often
I win: sometimes
I lose: sometimes
I never: eat onions
I always: love getting together with friends
I confuse: multiplication with division (argh)
I listen: when you want to talk to me
I can usually be found: reading or blogging
I need: God.
I am happy about: my life - I'm content with where I'm at
I imagine: that someday someone will read what I've just written and actually leave a comment! Yay!

I hereby tag,
Jasmine, Joanna, Madison, Mckenzie, Joelle, and anyone else who wants to do it. :)


Happy Birthday, Steven!


My little brother turned 13 last Friday! We celebrated by driving up to our friends' house for the day, playing Ultimate Frisbee, and baking Steven a beautiful fall-themed cake.

I think this picture is so cute... Steven is helping me sprinkle the sprinkles on to his cake and we're doing something unusual with our arms...

Mark, my 14 and 1/2 year old brother, also helped sprinkle the cake...

Isn't it lovely? It's supposed to be an autumn tree, with leaves falling to the grassy ground. (note the delicious candy corn on the sides of the cake) The chocolate sprinkles were not cooperating, but we managed anyway.

Gathered around the table as Steven's candles are lit...

And we have a successful blow! :)


Saturday, October 11, 2008

Making Caramel Apples and Getting Very Sticky While Doing So...

This is how you make Caramel Apples. Well, this is how we make them, anyway.

Unwrap a whole bag of KRAFT caramels into a medium-sized pot. (A double-boiler will work better, but if you stir it well you could probably use a normal one.)

Turn burner on to Medium-Low.
Prepare your apples by washing them and sticking popsicle sticks into the top. Place them on buttered wax paper to wait for their caramel coating.
Observe the happy Caramel Apple makers in action:
Stir the caramels while they are melting.

Pretend your apple is a microphone and you are singing into it while you wait for the caramels to melt all the way.

When caramel is completely melted, hold apple in pot...

...and spoon caramel over it until completely covered.
Place apples on buttered wax paper (on a plate or other hard surface) and let chill in the refrigerator.Once chilled, (after about an hour of patient waiting) Let sit on counter for 15 minutes. Really. Otherwise they will NOT come off the wax paper. :) Trust me.

And there you have delicious caramel apples! ENJOY!


Thursday, October 9, 2008

My Favorite Autumn Things

This looked like so much fun I had to do it. I found this tag at Madison's Musings, and she found it at A Pondering Heart. :)

My Favorite Things about Autumn:

  • 1. Favorite Smell... Hmmm, Well...probably the smell of Thanksgiving dinner cooking, but I also love smelling the scented candles in the living room.
  • 2. Favorite Food... For Fall, I'd have to say Chili. My mom makes the BEST homemade chili ever. Plus it's nice and warm on a chilly (haha) afternoon or evening.
  • 3. Favorite Color... Either red or surprisingly, orange. orange I really don't like too much during the rest of the year, but on the changing trees it's gorgeous. And red cranberries or maple leaves are absolutely beautiful.
  • 4. Favorite Drink...Hum. Probably hot chocolate, with apple juice coming in a close second. (I would rather drink apple juice than soda or just about anything else except raspberry lemonade, all the rest of the year)
  • 5. Favorite Treat... Either caramel apples (a newly discovered favorite) or Rice Krispy Treats.
  • 6. Favorite Place to Visit... The Smoky Mountains.
  • 7. Favorite Candy... Candy Corn! What else? :)
  • 8. Favorite Movie To Watch... Either Charlie Brown's Thanksgiving or "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown."
  • 9. Favorite Clothing to wear... Sweaters, Hoodies, and when it gets really cold, my very cute knee socks. :o)
  • 10. Favorite Outdoor Activity...Oooh, hard...probably nature hikes on which I photograph everything in sight, especially fall colors... and mushrooms - when I can find them. :)
  • 11. Favorite Football Team ... NFL: New York Giants!! (Who are SO going to win the super bowl this year) College: GA Bulldogs because it's my brother's favorite team. I also like the FL Gators because of their homeschooled quarterback, Tebow.
  • 12. Favorite Fall Holiday... Thanksgiving, of course! (We don't do Halloween)
  • 13. Favorite Haunted place (haunted as in frequently visited)... Hmmm... Either my bedroom, otherwise known as "JuliaLand", or our porch, which offers a delightful view of the woods.
  • 14. Favorite Food at Thanksgiving Dinner... The turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, and Stuffing. Oh and cranberry jelly, and the apple crisp...(etc.)
  • 15. Favorite Pie... Hard one. Pecan and apple are tied. Especially when you add whipped cream or vanilla ice cream on top. :)
  • 16. Favorite Fall Hobby... Blogging about Fall, Photographing the Fall colors, and playing outside with my two brothers.
  • 17. Favorite Fall Memory... Hmmm....Probably the first time we had a fire in our fireplace. We moved to Georgia in August of 2005, and we had our first fire sometime that October when it got chilly, and I remember being so thrilled that we actually had a fireplace! I grew up in South Florida, where the seasons are's just HOT and then cool for a bit then HOT again. Nobody had fireplaces! I really enjoy living somewhere where the seasons change. :)
  • 18. Favorite Fall Sight... The leaves! Hands down!
  • 19. Overall Favorite Fall Thing... Spending time with my family.
  • 20. Favorite Season... Either Fall or Spring. They are both 'transitional' seasons and I love them dearly...the blossoms of spring and the beautiful changing colors of fall are equally the best in my opinion.
I hereby tag whoever wants to participate!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

A Newsy Little Post #2

Fall is in the air! The leaves in the persimmon trees around about my log home are turning red! The post oaks shall soon follow with a burnished coppery brown, and the yellow tulip poplars are turning a pretty lemon yellow. I love it. Autumn is one of my favorite seasons!
My little brother's birthday is on Friday! Steven is turning 13, and with this birthday comes the fact that all of us kids are now teenagers. I'm 17, Mark is 14, and Steven will be 13! Wow - time flies when you're having fun!
I have been reading Family Driven Faith by Reverend Voddie Baucham Jr. It is an excellent book! I highly reccomend it to anyone interested in a biblical perspective of family life.
Today my brothers and I went down to a local park and played Frisbee. It was good practice, which should be helpful because we're going up to our friend's house on Friday to play Ultimate Frisbee! I can't wait!
I'm currently in the process of re-doing my room slightly. I found a very cute polka-dot bedspread while shopping in North Carolina and now I'm trying to match some other things in my room to it. (I'll try and post a picture soon)
I would just like to take a moment to thank you, dear readers, for leaving all your wonderful comments! I so enjoy them! I have had to put comment moderation on so that I can ensure everything is pleasant and that this is a safe blog, but do not fear, I will not neglect your delightful comments!
Blessings to all of you,