Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Very Erskine Christmas: Sweetest Day Photoshoot

One of my favorite traditions that our lovely little family does is celebrate Sweetest Day. Yes it exists...just like Santa. Which is fitting because every Sweetest Day we do a tripod family photoshoot.  You can check out last year's here.

This year, I wanted it to be like a really chaotic Christmas morning and was especially inspired by this quote:

Yes! I'm going to miss being around kids and babies this year for Christmas :'(

 

We made a Christmas morning fort!

 

I took our kitchen table chairs (which are single seaters and two booth styles) and used them to prop up a comforter that had been hanging up to dry and a quilt made by my friend Lisa.


I then decorated the ever livin' poop outta it.


 

One of the best parts is that Holly would sneakily weave herself through the back part of the fort to partake in more than half of the pictures.




We've still got to pick out our favorite for our Christmas card! Which ones do you like?


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Sunday, September 7, 2014

He Must Increase But I Must Decrease

I saw this video a half hour ago...


and it floored me.

I cried with joy.

I cried with happiness.

I simply cried for this sweet soul.

It filled me with an abundance of grace, appreciation, and humility.

It reminded me of the usual things that one becomes thankful for when they see these types of things.

It forces you to pause and reflect.

I thank God for my life.

I thank God for my amazing family.

I want to thank my parents for working so incredibly hard to see my dreams come true.

It also reminded me of how badly I want to adopt and how I can't wait to be a mom.

I was going to ask for prayers for my evaluation but after I saw that little video...

it put some things into perspective.

My worries and my stresses in life are so insignificant.

It will work out.

Long lay the world in sin and error pining
Till he appeared and the soul felt it's worth
The thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices
For yonder brinks a new and glorious morn
Fall on your knees
O hear the angel voices
O night divine


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Sunday, August 31, 2014

#journalingbible

Y'all I am so excited and Amazon is such a tease.

Have you ever heard of a journaling Bible?  I had, but the only journaling Bibles I had seen involved simply writing in the margins and that's something I already do.  It wasn't all that exciting.

Then I realized folks were actually creating art in the margins of their Bibles with how hymns or verses moved them.

It's amazing.





Wha-bam! There you have it.

A journaling Bible has major room in the margins aka a notetaker's dream but not only is there room for notes but you can create masterpieces in those margins.  

I first discovered this through Valerie Wiener's Instagram:

Photo: Each of our thorns are different but our God is the same, when you feel that thorn..Pray. Give Him control and let him Work the way He does. 
Also, in case you missed it, there's a new blog post up on ValerieWienersArt.com answering all of your #journalingbible questions and showing you some new pictures...
#ValerieDoodlestheBible #doodletheword #lettering #scripture #jesus
Photo Credit Valerie Wieners Art
 Isn't that beautiful?

She led me to see other folks' Instagrams and Facebook feeds.

Photo Credit Shanna Noel

She is currently giving away a copy of :


Check out Shanna's blog to enter the giveaway, otherwise you can find Writing in the Margins at Amazon.

If you haven't seen my Instagram feed lately, I've been cramming it with giveaways. I apologize in advance and I promise to beautify it in the very near future :) I just really want to start the Erskine baby stock right this minute...I can't help it :P

Back to the Journaling Bible!

I also joined a Facebook Journaling Bible group which is filled to the brim with beautiful inspiration.


I joined and it felt like God was blessing me as soon as I hit that "join" button.
This picture was posted by the group moderator (and awesome artist) Shanna Noel shortly after I became a member of the group.  
The #travelingbible will basically be a gorgeous, inspiring Bible that will be carried across the globe.  

My favorite book in the Bible is Hebrews and I cannot wait to add some art in those margins :)

Speaking of which, as soon as I saw Valerie's gorgeous newsfeed filling with colorful margins, I did a total impulse buy and bought one.  It got lost in the mail (THE HORROR) but Amazon, being amazing as always, quickly resent a new one.  I'll hopefully have it this Tuesday and it will be perfect timing for my upgrade sequence to a crew commander.  Please pray over me and send me well wishes!



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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Before You're Expecting


Before I dive into this post with a very suggestive picture, I'm not pregnant BUT the conversation is happening.  Yes, praise Jesus we are in the stage where this is actually a feasible idea.  I wanted to journal through my experience of what it's like in the "before you're expecting" stage.  Now I'm not quite ready to share when I believe we will be "ready" but I think sharing all of this is going to be fun for me and hopefully informative for other families out there who may end up reading this.

If you know me at all, I have a fever...a baby fever.

It's bad y'all. I think I have wanted to have a baby with Ryan since the moment we got married.  It has been such a joy that now, at 3.5 years of marriage, we are legitimately having these conversations about planning our family.  

I can remember the moment Ryan asking me my thoughts on having a baby at X time.  You should have seen this gal's face, I was beaming from ear to ear.  Finally! Ryan was finally on the same mental wavelength as me.  Having studied reproductive rights and my interest in becoming a doula, I have a lot of baby books.  Color me weird at having all of these "baby books" in stock, but I am completely baffled as to how people can do so much research into purchasing something like a computer but don't know their rights when having a baby.  *Jumps off soap box*

Soooo I'm readily willing and excited to share my journey of researching products, trying things out, and educating myself on all things pregnancy, baby, and labor-related.  

Without looking at Air Force policies with Tricare, my birth plan involves having a doula, a midwife, and a water birth.  That would be a most ideal situation.  However, the other aspect of our family's plan is making sure that our military healthcare plan will cover it.  So my ideal plan may end up being in a hospital or where ever I'm covered.  If you've had any experience with pregnancy and the military, feel free to comment below! I'm all ears!

I recently went to my base gyno to have an overall check-up and she was this wonderfully pregnant captain.  It was so much fun being able to finally be excited and she was a bundle of energy herself.  It's great to finally be able to start asking these questions and figure out when my IUD can be taken out, etc.

For awhile I was incredibly reluctant to ever get pregnant while in this career field but then I started realizing that I needed to take care of myself and my family's needs and desires.  In the past year, I have volunteered for base/military everything and although I do a great job and am reliable, I started feeling overworked.  I was putting together great projects despite having limited resources and a lack of support, and the end result didn't satisfy me.  It started to feel very unfulfilling and I largely think it was because work without a lot of appreciation being sent your way is taxing. Being busy was my way of boosting my career and calming down the baby fever.  

After this happened several times where projects would come and go, and I just felt exhausted, I started taking mental notes of resolutions.  They included transitioning a lot of this energy into off base projects and volunteering or working off base.  Every volunteer opportunity that I've done in the community here has been amazing and so rewarding.  I feel that people are 100% committed and you're not working with folks who are voluntold.  These thoughts and ideas kept circulating and when Ryan brought up having a baby, I realized that I'm going to not only limit my base activities, but finally choose projects and volunteer opps that I can be fully committed to because being pregnant is a lot of work unto itself.

Writing this has been so therapeutic.  Now I only request your prayers and well wishes as our little family embarks on this journey :) 

  



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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Dream Business Venture Campaign


 Kabbage , a small business loans company with a fun name, asked me, "if you had the chance to start a business tomorrow, what would it be, and why?"

Gosh, where to start...

Kabbage sought me out because my blog covers so many things that I'm interested in whether it is human rights, being a feminist who likes to craft, having babies, or living my faith- all of these topics are important to me and things that I feature on my blog.

If I had the chance to start a business, I would actually like to be part of an event planning company where I could style events.  I love coming up with the creative elements.  That in itself drives me and I am so passionate about making beautiful things and events.  So throughout this post is a look back at some of the things that I featured on my blog.  I'll also be talking about this dream venture ;)


When starting a new business, it takes a whole lot of will power.  In my current state, I have dabbled in the idea of opening an Etsy shop with fun greeting cards.  However, I haven't taken a business class and I know how to market the crap out of something, I also want to make sure I have some business savvy.  Faith is so important to me, but I'm also a goofball so I want both of those characteristics to be displayed in whatever business endeavor I choose.  It would be so awesome to start off with a greeting card shop and then move onto styling events (my eyes are totally lighting up right now).




If I started a greeting card/print shop through Etsy, I would want to have a solid set of card prototypes ready to go.  The focus of the greeting cards would be fun and sassy, ultimately a card collection aimed at successful, 20-somethings.
 

In order to create my business, I would love to have a desktop Mac versus my Macbook Pro that is starting to earn its years.  I would also need a laserjet printer to practice my prototypes.  I would also need to test out some print companies so that I can have a quality product.  As a girl who loves styling, I also can't send out my cards without some sa-weet packaging.  In terms of promotion, I would love to have a professional website as well.


Now if I was doing the styling and creative director position for an events company, that would be AMAZEBALLS.  I really love going all out with styling, so I imagine I would need to build a repertoire with clients and photographers.  I would also need a storage facility and a swanky office.  I love hunting on eBay for vintage items to complete a look.  If I had more funds and space, boy howdy, my parties would be Pottery Barn-worthy ;)


I hope you enjoyed peeking into some of dreams and endeavors with me.  What are some of your career aspirations?



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