Thursday, June 27, 2013

NAS: What I Love About Being Single

I've missed the first few link-ups for this series, but thought it would both fun and uplifting to join these sweet I'll just jump right in this week. This week's topic for the Not Alone Series is What I Love About Being Single.
I'm going to start off with a big bold disclaimer here: my heart's desire is to be married. Ever since I could hold a baby doll, I've wanted to be a mommy. I want to love and serve God through a best-friend husband. I want to raise children to be saints and to change the world for Christ. It's knitted in my soul. It's not here yet. And I used to struggle with that a LOT. I still do sometimes. But the Lord has truly worked in my heart that I find incredibly beautiful peace and joy as I surrender to His will and timing--and as I choose to trust Him in a broken world.
In the meantime...(shhh...don't tell Him, because then He might just let me stay single--ah, the silly things we think sometimes!), there are actually a lot of things I *gasp* love about being single.
Freedom. I love being able to go where I want when I want. I do have an (amazing, wonderful, heart-stopping) boyfriend so I do try to keep his schedule in mind as well. But I love the freedom and flexibility of the single woman's schedule. Whether it's planning a fun weekend away or even just being able to go for a walk alone after a busy work day, being in charge of your schedule has its perks.
Finances. I'm able to save for the future, but occasionally (okay, okay...probably more than occasionally) splurge on the here and now. I can afford to buy organic groceries and shop at my favorite clothing store. Or go out to eat with friends. I'm honestly pretty frugal, but it's nice not to have to budget.
Travel. It's been mentioned by the other girls, but I love to travel. I've been to many of the States, took a Caribbean cruise, and am preparing for a mission trip to Haiti. I love new experiences and new places, so what a blessing to have these trips while I'm single and can afford them!
Friends. My girlfriends are my second family. This is one of the greatest gifts in my life--these precious women. They inspire me, encourage me, carry me, and laugh like crazy with me. And if I were married, there's no way I'd be able to keep up with them like I do now. We're able to zumba or workout together, garage sale together, do picnics together, have girls nights together. I love P. immensely, but there's something uniquely beautiful about the friendships of women.
And the random: Decorating the apartment with fun girly colors. No set meal times or having to prepare a nice dinner when I'm in a hurry or tired. Housekeeping of a small, cute apartment instead of a larger home. Not feeling too guilty when I have a no-makeup, frumpy clothing kind of day. More time for hobbies and activities and pursuits.
Finally--there are some spiritual benefits to the single life. I have more time for volunteer and service work. There are unique ministry opportunities when you're young and single-- I love hanging out with the college kids P. ministers to. I cling to God more. I get to know Him first and foremost as my Rock, my Lover, and the only One Sure Thing in life. He becomes my strength, my comfort, and my joy as I surrender my life to Him and His plan. He has proved faithful and I know He will continue to be Who He says He is. Realizing He--and only He--will never let me down is some of the best prep for marriage.
What are/were your favorite things about being single?
Check out the Not Alone Series Linkup for more posts!


Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Wisdom for Wednesdays

"I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought; and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder."

-G. K. Chesterton

Tuesday, June 25, 2013


Good morning!

It's Tuesday.

June 25th.


And you and me, we woke up today. We're alive and breathing. On an unrepeatable day.

It's a gift. One moment at a time. Those other days of this week--they're not here yet. Just today.

Live it with me?

Monday, June 24, 2013

For the Love of Coconut [Oil]

There's something so enticing about coconut scents or flavors in the summertime. So tropical. So festive. So yummy! I have coconut body lotion, coconut hair scrunching spray, and coconut shampoo. But my favorite coconut item doesn't go on my body, it goes in it!

I am in love with coconut oil.

My mom actually got me started on it-- she used it long before it was popular. And let me tell you, it makes the best recipes ever. It's kind of like Crisco without the hydrogenated bad stuff in it. It makes goodies soft on the inside and crispy on the outside (yep, amazing cookies) and it has just the slightest hint of coconut flavor.

Love the stuff.

So when Tropical Traditions sent me a jar of their coconut oil, I was thrilled.

So thrilled that there's only about a half-inch left of the oil in the bottom of the quart-size jar! I've used it in peanut butter cookies, in strawberry cheesecake bread, in scrambled eggs, in Chinese stir-fry vegetables, in no-bake cookies, and more. I'm addicted. My next goal is to make "magic shell" chocolate syrup that hardens when it hits the ice cream.

I've used coconut oil before, but I have to say I did notice a difference with the Tropical Traditions brand. It's softer and easier to use--sometimes the other brands harden and it's more like chiseling rock to scoop it out. Tropical Traditions never hardened like that, which made it more like shortening. Loved that.

Their website is also neat as it has tons of great recipe ideas for coconut oil, and I've liked them on Facebook to get their tips, recipes, and news articles on coconut oil as well as health and natural living. They are health-driven, energized, and trustworthy.

Definitely a thumbs-up review for this product. Not only am I impressed with the product, but I'm also very impressed by the company.

Some links for you to check out:

--Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil page

--YouTube Video on Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil

--Tropical Traditions Home Page

And oh know how I said it goes in my body instead of on my body? Well, I've also used it as shaving cream...and hair conditioner...and a face moisturizer.

Am I sounding nuts? Um, coco-nuts, maybe?

Okay, I'm done.

[Disclaimer: Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose.  Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product.]

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Happy Sunday Morning to you

It's a gorgeous Sunday morning. Quiet and peaceful (and the house is clean!). I'm sipping the house blend from my favorite coffee shop and eating Kashi cereal before I leave for Mass.

I hope your morning is beautiful, too. Let's worship the Lord together across the miles this day, His day.

I spent the weekend with this amazing friend, who inspired me to get back into blogging! I may even join up with this cool series.

Happy Sunday, friends! Enjoy the sunshine!