Posted in Personal growth

5 upbeat and inspiring Christian music that our family love

My kids and I listen to K-Love all the time in the car. Their music is just what they are known for: positive and encouraging. The worship music they play is catchy, lyrics inspiring, and overall message encouraging to remember how much we are loved by God and changed by his love.   

We continue this music listening streak in the house with Google Home. One good time to play music is when the kids are lagging to get ready. My “brush your teeth” mantra gets ignored until songs start playing and their little bodies start to groove. Another time is when our day is in a lull: music energizes us and gets us into a better mood. 

A cute bear statue from the new garden at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital

There’s many more, but I’ll only list 5 today. For me I’ve noticed that if the list is too long, I just glance (due to my very short attention span).You could check out one song a day or all of them in 30 minutes or so. 

If you get a chance this week or feel like you could use a burst of happy, check out any of these songs or their music video on YouTube. Snap your fingers and smile!! 

  1. “Happy Dance” by MercyMe
  2. “Beautiful Day” by Jamie Grace
  3. “Joy” by King & Country
  4. “Changed” by Jordan Feliz
  5. “Grace Got You” by MercyMe

Posted in Photography

A Photo a Week: The Things that Matter Most

Thank you Nancy for hosting this challenge. So fun reminiscing while looking for these photos. 

https://nadiamerrillphotography.wordpress.com/2018/12/14/a-photo-a-week-challenge-the-things-that-matter-most/

This is one of my all-time favorite photos of me and Chris. It was taken with a regular camera, so I don’t have a digital copy of it. 

We took this photo in Central Park after he proposed in front of my apartment door in NYC. Both of us were graduate students at the time and limited on time and resources, so it didn’t seem too nerdy that he proposed with a power point presentation. At that point in our relationship, he could do no wrong in my eyes. Now, well…let’s just say that relationships evolve/ mature over time and I’ve come to love all the weirdness and idiosyncrasies about him.    

My second favorite picture of my little peeps. Picture day, and Elliot was not too happy with the tie so much. 
Posted in Uncategorized

Where do missing socks go, and what do you do with the missing ones?

Can someone tell me how socks get lost once they enter the abyss of the washing machine? 

I save a bundle of lone socks that have lost its pair. Sometimes I find one in a stack of folded clothes or hidden inside the corner of mattress sheets. The other day I found a lost pair in the garage.

I should throw them away because the bundle is getting too dusty and unorganized; there’s a bundle for kids and a bundle for the grown ups. I keep hoping that one day I’ll reuse them as a glove duster or sock dolls. I don’t even know what is a responsible way to dispose of them. But when I want to reuse it for another purpose, I can’t find the sock bundle. It’s a frustrating cycle of losing and finding things. 

Where do they go? Sometimes it’s impossible to find the matching pair. But in the winter it doesn’t matter much when you’re wearing boots. You can get rebellious and wear two different kinds of socks. It’s a win-win situation: environmentally friendly and useful. 

 

Posted in Personal growth

When you don’t feel creative

Creativity is everywhere. Almost everything we do has an element of creativity within it. I used to think creativity was limited only fine arts, literature, music, and the like. But my idea of it has broadened. Everyone is creative and has potential to unearth something beautiful and useful from it.

Spending most of my days with 2 small kids shows me how kids can take anything and make it part of their imaginary play. Ninjas have become the new craze at our house. Before they got any Lego Ninjago figures, thank you Secret Santa from Bible study, crayola markers turned into ninjas fighting each other and dinosaurs escaping in a pink Lego car. I don’t get it. What’s so fun about plain old markers? It makes me wonder how this kind of play could be so engaging. They’re not trying to be creative; it’s fun and silly to them.

An important part of creativity is believing that you are and letting go of expectations that it needs to look or be a certain way. The word itself “create” gives me heart palpitations. This self-sabotaging mindset makes it hard to let go, explore, tinker around with, and allow budding ideas to develop, or even see the light of day. 

Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight or any experience that reveals the human spirit. E. E. Cummings

Once kids came into my life, I’ve become more vigilant and appreciative of creativity around me. Many friends amaze me with their creativity and it makes me aspire to learn more and do more. But this has its downfalls: it takes time away from developing what I’m good at doing or comparing myself with them. Not good.

Some pretty corals and rocks to enjoy

Creativity comes in many forms; anything can become a creative act when we make it our own and we do it our own way. 

Here is an ongoing list of the spectrum of creativity surrounding me through acquaintances, friends, family, and neighbors: researching, teaching, leading, writing, drawing, dancing, baking, crafting, coaching, decoupaging, gardening, coaching, running, photographing, encouraging, serving, caring, farming (for my folks), coordinating, organizing, problem solving, knitting, water color painting, etc.

Whew, I started the list and it keeps going. I can relate to only a couple of them. So instead of wishing that I could do what they do, I’m learning to appreciate, be impressed with, and to celebrate their creativity. It’s not always about me; difficult for an only child to learn even as a middle-aged person.

Things I’ve learned in my frustration to get creativity flowing:

  • Follow your curiosity.
  • Play. Fiddle around with materials, ideas.
  • Be patient with the process.
  • I’ve learned that taking nap help with this process. The brain needs time to put it all together.
  • Accept mistakes.
  • Don’t shy away from exploring new ideas. It’s not time wasted but time invested.
  • Have snacks and drinks nearby to keep the nervous energy at bay. Walking to the kitchen can break the momentum and lead to other distractions.
  • Learn from other people’s work. 
  • Share your creativity with others. It will bring joy to everyone involved. 
  • Pray. Pray for a quiet mind and heart. God is the maker of the universe and all its wonderful creations, including humans. He knows what’s up and I believe He can make creativity blossom in my life, as well as yours. 


“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.”  Colossions 3:23-24