Wednesday, December 31, 2008

First Comes Love...

-Gregg & Heidi-

first comes love...
...then comes marriage; June 14 2009!!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

'til the season for lots of photos...

Lots and lots of photos... here's a quick peek....

Heidi and I on Thanksgiving!!! She and Gregg surprised me and came down to Silverton with the Family! I was so excited to see them... especially excited to admire the BLING on Heidi's finger.... that's right; it's official: My brother is going to marry my Best Friend!
Carissa came back to Bend with me after Thanksgiving and we went Ice Skating with Stacia!

I took Carissa back up to Lynden so she could prepare to fly back to Argentina and had a lot of fun jammed into 2 days! Including but not limited to:

Woods Coffee with Elijah! Hooray for Coffee and Connect Four!Christmas Tree Hunting with my Family!
Josiah looks so excited to be helping chop that tree down...Jacob finishing up the other tree....5 of 6 Greek Princesses.... Lindsey we miss you!
I had WAY TOO MUCH FUN... taking pics of myself in the ornaments...
This is the best i could to for Prince Charming this year... sorry folks, the real thing is on his way... and in the mean time i will continue to pose with crazy fake guys.Seven and i continue to have a blast hanging out with each other... his mom calls me his "Best Friend".... i don't mind...
I am training him to be in love with Nikon at an early age....
Eric and Linday let me take Christmas Photos for them...
Sunsets from Seven's backporch are AMAZING....
There you have it folks... a quick peek at my life the last month!!!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Seven and I continue to have lots of fun together...
right now our "challenge" is learning to scoot on his tummy!

...sorry about the poor quality... it's from my phone.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Nap Time Tears

Seven is in his crib right now... crying and crying.

Nap time starts with singing and rocking in dark room... and then i gently lay him in his bed, and the peaceful child starts crying his little heart out. I softly tell him it's ok and walk out of the room. The crying continues... 1 minute, 3 minutes, 5 minutes.... after 10 minutes i go back in and wind up the lullaby box, find his Binky and rub his tummy. He stops crying and grabs my hand as if i am leaving forever, not wanting me to walk out of the room. I slowly pull my fingers away and sneek out. The crying starts again. 3minutes, 5, minutes, 12 minutes... i head back in. The tears are streaming down his face and i pick him up. The binky is somehow at the other end of the crib. I put it in his mouth and walk around the room singing softly "Jesus loves me this i know..." he quiets down and softly whimpers behind the soothing rubber in his mouth. Seven reaches up and grabs my hair... his eyes wonder if the tight grip on my long locks will keep me there longer. As i lay him back down under the soft brown blanket, he spits out the Binky and the crying starts again. It's a tired cry. He didn't sleep much last night and his morning nap was shorter than normal. 5 minutes... the crying has stopped. All i can hear is the lullaby box, a soft whimper, and occasional sigh.

I remember so many times with all my younger siblings the lessons about nap time when they are little. Crying is ok. They aren't hungry, they aren't wet, they are tired and need to sleep. They need rest. I remember with Elijah it was so hard to let him cry. He was so little and cute and wonderful.... but the crying at nap time basically ripes out ones heart!!!! All he wanted was to be held. All Seven wants is to be held. He wants to know that i am right there. To feel safe in the arms of one who loves you so much! My mom taught me the art of letting the little one cry. Wait a few minutes and go back in... each time let the clock tick longer. It's so hard. I just want to rock him until he falls asleep. I want to sing him Jesus Loves Me 500 times while he coos and sniffles. But he is ok. He is safe, fed, dry and tired. Eventually he will fall asleep.

I was reading in Matthew 15 today... the story about the woman who comes to Jesus, because her daughter is tormented by a demon. 3 times Jesus ignores or rebukes her. She is a gentile. However her faith went down in history as an example of some who didn't stop asking, who didn't stop crying out for a miracle.

I have been pondering her story all day, and while i was rocking Seven it all came together in my mind. I cry out to Jesus on a regular basis. I hold on to His hand as if i will never hold it again. I reach out for a hug as if it's the last hug i will have from my savior. I cry out. I am not in danger. I am not hungry. I am not sitting in a puddle of life. I am tired and i just want to be held by the One who holds me best. I just want Him to sing over me. I want Him to tell me "it's ok" 500 times over. I don't want Jesus to leave my room. And so i cry out.

Is the cry in Faith that He will answer or in fear that He won't? For me it depends on the day. It depends on where my perspective is. I would like to think that the prayers of Faith, like the woman are more common than the cries of Nap Time Tears... i'm not sure what the ratio is. probably close to 50/50. He is always here. He always hears my cries. I think, however that He is listening for Faith not Fear. He is listening for belief that He is who he has proven time and time again He. He has never left me in the dark, hungry, scared, and wet. NEVER. He has never left me alone and not returned to remind me that He is just a moment away. Somtimes i turn away and forget He is there, but He has never left me.

The house is quiet. All i hear is the clicking of the keys as my fingers fumble across the black keyboard, and the tic-tock of the clock in the kitchen. Seven is asleep. The lullaby box is silent. My heart is stirred up; Faith is rising to the surface of my every thought. The picture of Matthew 15:21-28 is so real in my mind. I can see the woman, her eyes pleading, tears streaming down her flushed cheeks, her hair is a wild mess from the search for the One who could free her daughter. Jesus is there. His back is turned towards her. His face is deep in thought. He knows her face without looking. He seems to be waiting for something, either that or pondering what the next few moments hold. The 12 look on in frustration and annoyance. Her last request hangs in the air... a cry of faith and determination to see a miracle that day...

"Woman," Jesus said to her, "your faith is great. Your request is granted."
And her daughter was healed instantly."

I hope to some day sit with that woman and her the joy that must have flooded her heart when she heard those words. I wonder the laughter that must have filled her house that night. I think about her daughter, sleeping peacefully because the tormentor was gone. I think about her faith. Great faith. She has no name, but her Nap Time Tears were full of Faith, and she cried out expecting the answer she wanted. She didn't let anything stand in her way... and she heard those words from the One who can speak life, breathe truth and walk in Power.
"Your faith is great."

Thursday, November 06, 2008

One Life.

I have been told i few things recently...

1. that i have a lot of passion.
2. that i have a lot of energy.
3. that i really seem to love life.

I would venture to say that those statements are true! I do have a lot of passion. I throw myself into whatever is at hand. I'm not a fan of doing something i don't want to do... because i probably won't do it well. Things i love and do with passion:

I absolutely LOVE the youth ministry at Westside. This fall we as a ministry have walked through a lot of changes, in structure, in leadership and in students. From my perspective we have walked out these changes incredibly well!! I'm blessed every time i leave that building, wednesday or sunday! When i step into that room it's game time for me. I pour my passion into every person i talk to... I pour out my passion in worship... and last week when i had the honor to speak... i poured my passion out!!! Yes i live my passion on my sleeve. I'm ok with being a little different because of my passion. I would rather live this one life with passion than float through and wonder where my passion was.

Photography. Taking pictures doesn't seem like much of a task. A large population of people have cameras and even digital SLRs... so the "need" for a professional photographer seems to be losing it's spot... however somepeople were made for life behind the lens. I was. Whenever i have the joy of doing shoot my heart beats almost out of my chest and i want to jump and scream!!! I LOVE capturing moments and the people enjoying the moments. The other day i realized i have over 15,000 pictures on my computer!!!!!! People always say i should delete some... i do... but for every 5 i delete there are 20 that i love! I want to capture as many moments as possible in this one life. I know i wont' be able to take them with me into Heaven, but i hope so of my favorites will still be remembered in my heart.... and i have a secret hope that there is a HUGE art gallery in Heaven...and that some of the moments i campture will be there on canvas and just as real as they are here.

My job. Whatever it is. Red Robin. Seven. NCCTK. Timekeepers. Woods Coffee. I hope that each of the places i have had the blessing of working remember me as a person of passion who let it ooze out at work. Like i said i don't like doing things i don't want to do because i don't do it well. I have had the blessing of being able to have jobs that i LOVE... so of course my passion came out.... in the form of making a latte, changing a diaper, serving bottomless fries and loving on 4-6th graders.

Now regarding my energy. I only have one idea for where it comes from; Holy Spirit. Seriously. I know that Energy is not on any Spiritual Gifts test you will ever see, but i honestly believe that God knew i would need intense amounts of energy for the things he was/is lining up for my life... so i got a little extra...and it keeps coming. I'm so blessed by it. I know i couldn't do a lot of the things i have without the energy God has given me...or rather it wouldn't have been done will. I'm sorry if my energy messes up your peaceful day...or if it comes out loud...or if i seem ADHD... i really don't mean to be louder than "normal" or distracted... it's just an energy thing. I'll give you grace for that crazy thing you do if you give my energy some grace....i'm really not trying to run over anyone with it.... there's just a lot i want to see, do, say, smell, feel and places to go!!!!

That brings us to the last one. I love my life. I really do!!!! I have bad days. Please believe me on that one. I have days that i would rather crawl back in bed and wait for the next one to start. I cry. I actually feel pain. I'm not always bouncing off the walls, but i honestly LOVE my life. I told someone today that i only have one chance at this life here on earth and i am going to live it up. It's true. I have One Life. One moment. One hour. And i am going to live it up in the most fun, godly, crazy, adventerous way i know how.

This is a little quote about myself i have on Facebook:

i'm a little girl stuck in a 23 year old body, trying to leave a fingerprint on the world around me. my favorite color is purple and i like green apples.

it's true. More often than not, i forget that i am really 23. Sometimes i feel 6. Sometimes i feel 27. Sometimes i feel 12. and Sometimes 16. I want to live this One Life with passion, energy and love every moment of it!!!! I want to leave a fingerprint on everyone i meet and everywhere i go. I don't want to miss one thing that God has for me here.

oh and my favorite color is purple, i like green apples, i have a weird liking for frogs, i don't own a pair of designer jeans, coffee was invented just for me, and i like doing laundry.

How is your One Life going?

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Hanging out with Seven!

At the beginning of October i started a new job; i am now a "professional" nanny! Seven is his name...being super chill is his game! He is seriously one of the most laid back babies i've ever encountered!!! He smiles a lot, has the cutest giggle and is a rolling machine!!!! We hang out 3 days a week from Sunrise to Sunset! I love it!!!

so with out further hoopla.... this is Seven.....

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Live Your Moments Well

"By this time tomorrow, today will be the past.
So what you do today will be the past that shaped the future."
-Greg Kooistra

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Jillian Senior Sneak Peek

Here is a little sneak peek at what i LOVE LOVE LOVE to do... Senior Shoots!!!!
Jillian is Rad... and we had a ton of fun downtown today!!!!!

Friday, October 24, 2008


this is the best version of this skit i have seen recorded! even if you've seen it... watch it again.

Lifehouse- Everything

Monday, October 20, 2008

fall photos

I know for sure these will not be the only fall photos i post this year. Bend is simply incredible in the fall... and i have been quite shutter happy!!!! we will call this Girl Shoot 2008 On sunday i went down to drake park to take "fall pictures" with 4 amazing friends! check it out...

Girl Shoot 2008
Simply Noel...

"my" Jenna Kay...

Katie beautiful Katie...

Mekenzie... the model.

crazy me...
we had a lot of fun...
more fall pics... just around the corner!!!!

Sunday, October 19, 2008


intentional. it's a good word. it's meaning is really basic: to do something on purpose.

Everyday we do things on purpose. We get out of bed on purpose. We leave the house on purpose. We go to work on purpose. We have fun on purpose. We choose a certain attitude on purpose. We love people on purpose.

I know for a fact that none of you want to read about my purpose in getting out of bed everyday at 6:15am or about the purpose my work, or why my attitude is a certain way(or maybe you do). But the thing i want to post about tonight is loving people on purpose. Sorry if you were hoping for a "top 10 fun things" post. This isn't one of them... also let me apologize if i am too honest or have made you uncomfortable in the past. It's just the way i am wired; I don't sugar coat things very well.

loving people on purpose. first off i am not talking about the love of romance or love of chocolate cake. I am talking about the not-always-glamorous-sitting-in-the-mud kind of love. The intentional kind. For example:

When someone blesses me with coffee or a note of encouragement just because. NO OTHER REASON!!! that's intentional love. Or how about when someone texts you just to let you know they think you are wonderful... because they really do... no other reason.
That's intentional love. I could make this all super spiritual and bring out some great story from the gospels about Jesus loving people intentionally but i won't. Look it up... the stories i am talking about are there.

I look around my life and see something that makes me sad. two words capture it pretty well:

Social Leverage.

Don't know what i am talking about? Hang out with some people... you'll see what i mean. I was going to classify this with young adults, but it applies in a lot of age groups. People looking for the "cool kids". People wanting so bad to be "in" or "noticed". People striving for attention. So many times we don't even realize that we are stepping on people to get there. We are only intentional when it means social leverage for us. We so often only go out of our social bubble if it will benefit us(ME) in someway. Why? Why? Why?

Can we please just love people? Can we please just try? i dare us.
here are the practical things i am talking about:

- go out to coffee with someone you've never had a 1-1 conversation with... and ask them about their dreams, hopes and wishes.
-invite someone to your "hang out" who doesn't normally come... mix things up a bit.
-buy someone flowers, just because they reminded you of that person... it doesn't matter WHAT that person has or HASN'T done for you.
-STOP. and ask someone how their life is... and be ready for a possibly long answer. don't rush past moments.
-buy someone's bottled water when they don't have enough change... i did this at trader joes and caused quite a stir... it was really funny how people reacted to a SIMPLE act of kindness.
-smile. it's beautiful no matter what you think... God made it in HIS image and HE is beautiful... your smile could LITERALLY change a day(and in turn a life)

i know some of those things sound so "cheesy". But if you honestly look at your life... do you see yourself as someone who INTENTIONALLY loves people or someone who rushes on past? May you think you are intentional, but are you only intentional if it benefits you? OR perhaps you know exactly what i am talking about because you live in the same world i do... and wonder if someone will be intentional with you... just because they think you are great and not because you can benefit their life.

let's stinkin love people well this week. Please.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A Journey of Faith; Cheers to my Mom!

hey check it out:

A Journey Of Faith

it's my AMAZING Mom's NEW website.... she created it. Yikes! How does a mom of 13 manage to make a website "on the side" while homeschooling, being a mom, being a wife, and having a life????

Secret #1 about my mom: She is Superwoman.

Secret #2 about my mom: She is the BEST pie-maker in the whole world

Secret #3 about my mom: She is competitive; you would never know until you've played Hand and Foot with her.

Secret #4 about my mom: She has never been to Hawaii, and doesn't really want to go; Australia is her secret dream vacation.

Secret #5 about my mom: She is able to mulitply time. Seriously. I am pretty sure her days have 35 hours in them....

Secret #6 about my mom: She can spot a lie a mile away. She also knows when someone is being fake, but thinks they have her fooled.

Secret #7 about my mom: She looks 10 years younger than most people her age...Ask anyone who's met her... She doesn't at all look 4_ years old OR like the mother of 13!!!

Secret #8 about my mom: She had a cancerous tumor the size of a lemon in her throat. Ask her the story it's pretty rad.

Secret #9 about my mom: Even though she is 4_ years old, she still has so much to give this world!!!!! I am excited to see where God takes her on this next FAITH adventure... ask her about her definition of Faith, and you will find out 2 things; A. she could be an English Teacher B. she actually lives a life of faith!

Secret #10 about my mom: She is MY all time FAVORITE person to go on a girl date with, because she loves me!!! Not just in the "mom way" in the REAL person who actually cares about my life sort of way.

Oh and if that's not enough, she also has a REALLY great blog that she keeps up all the time!!!

BEWARE: if you click this link make sure you carve out a chunk of time, you will get sucked into my BIG AMAZING GREEK FAMILY and the incedible life they live. aka, you won't want to stop reading. =)
I'm Ghana Adopt

PS- i love you mom!!!

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Happy October... it's snowing.

That's basically all i wanted to say, but i think in order for this to be a real blog post i have to actually write something semi-intelligent.

today i have been listing my thoughts in ABC order, so we'll go with that and see what happens.

A. I have 3 brothers here in Bend for the weekend! Hooray for Gregg dating Heidi and Josiah and Elijah tagging along for some fun!!!!

B. It really was snowing for a while tonight. I was really pouty about it. Don't get me wrong i love snow, but not in October. This could be a long winter.

C. I have a new job! Hooray!!! God totally blessed me with a nanny job. My mom's new website says i am a professional nanny... which made me smile! Seven is 5months old; He and i had lots of fun adventures our first week together. We went for walks, swang on the porch swing watching the sunset, took naps, and laughed a lot. He is in that stage were the drool is a constant drip... so the cuffs on my sleeves were rather wet =) I'll keep you updated as Seven and i go on adventures through growing up.... hanging out with a 5 month old is giving me great perspective on life/being a mom/being a baby/growing up.

D. Red Robin and i are still friends... don't worry i haven't peaced out on the dirty bird yet!!!

E. Emerge is rad. Corey Parnell can preach. The series we started tonight has a long title: How I Learned to Let Go and Stop being such a Control Freak. And if tonights message was just #1.. it's going to be a great series.

F. I'm praying about taking a trip. It's been over 2 years since i went overseas and the ache in my heart grows everyday. My AMAZING brother Jeremiah, who by the way is learning Arabic, is 21, handsome, single, amazing, smart, funny, gifted, nice, crazy and did i mention he loves Jesus. Oh. he loves Jesus. ---no that was not an add for a future wife, i just wanted you to know what i think of my brother.---anyways, he lives in the middle east and is doing AMAZING things to dispel the kingdom of darkness, and bring LIGHT and LIFE to a hurting culture. Mostly i want to go visit him, but i also want to see what God is up to in the middle east.

G. i miss my sisters. the 3 oldest Greek princesses are all on different Continents!!! and the little 3 live 450 miles to far from me.

H. why is it snowing?

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Happy Anniversary us.

This week celebrates meeting my BFF and the adventure of the last year together.
Here's to us; Heidi Lynn and Cassie D.