13 things I learned this summer | 2016

  1. That space travel really benefitted all of humanity in a lot of ways.  Dan and I were watching Apollo 13 one night together and I commented about what a waste of money and talent just to say we went to the moon. Well, one google search later, I was eating my words and Praising the name of Space Travel and Research!  #cellphonecamera #cleanenergy #scratchresistentglasses #waterpurification #catscans  Just to name a few of the thousands of things that have stemmed from space travel development.The space shuttle Atlantis launches for the STS-135 mission to the International Space Station in the final mission of the space shuttle program at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Friday, July 8, 2011. ( NASA Photo / Houston Chronicle, Smiley N. Pool )
  2. Newer doesn’t mean better. I was so looking forward to seeing Pete’s Dragon. I loved that movie growing up. But alas… it fell flat for me. It was meh! Which strangely enough I had this sense it would be as I watched the previews. Let’s put it this way, I enjoyed the preview of Beauty and the Beast more than I enjoyed the whole movie about Pete and his Dragon, a dragon who strangely kept giving me Neverending Story flash backs! This summer wasn’t a great one for movies… I actually left to go run errands in the middle of Independence Day 2, dumb dumb dumb.  Looking forwards to  THIS one… THIS one… and THIS one. petesdragon
  3. When my husband gets home from going to the grocery store it’s kind of like opening a basket on Chopped. It used to bug me to no end when there would be several things I’d never even think of buying but once I realized that his unique and adventurous tastes didn’t cost that much and also provided an opportunity to get out of my comfort zone, #blueberrypieoreos  #pepperonciniflavoredchips #grapesherbet NOT SO MUCH. but #hotwingruffles #ohsnappickles YES PLEASE! I started actually looking forward to his discoveries! (Now that you know I’m on to you sweetheart and don’t mind your crazy little purchases, don’t go crazy now! 😉kids-at-central-market
  4. I learned that I tend to post these “Things I learned” posts because it’s easier to write about things you yourself are learning instead of writing from a place of authority or opinion because doing that is scary and vulnerable and opens you up to potential and probable backlash and negative comments… maybe even loss of relationships. Ya’ll I feel like I have SO much I want to write about but I think I’m afraid to. Well maybe it’s 50/50 that, there’s also the fact that at the end of the day of parenting I don’t often have the mental energy to delve deep on things that require the level of depth I would want to apply to those subjects.four-outside-of-cheesecake-factory
  5. How to make the BEST No bake Cookies.   You’re Welcome!  The secret to really great No-bakes is to really make sure the sugar dissolves fully, so stir constantly over medium/low heat to bring to a boil. And EVERY other recipe calls for twice as much oats… but I like mine fudgy and shiny instead of like granola balls.  I drop them using a cookie scoop for uniformity sake. These take a while to set up… but the wait is worth it. Also, adding a packet of instant coffee granules or a dash of cinnamon to the mix makes them super awesome and more of an adult treat.  casey-chappell-final-no-bake-cookie-recipe
  6. I discovered that Luvs diapers work for my two babies!! Not sure if I just wrote them off when they didn’t work for Zoe or Jack AT ALL, so I didn’t try them again… but this summer due to budget cuts I tried them again and they work AWESOME for Abel and Isla! And I love how soft and squishy they feel! Target went and changed their baby wipes… and I’m not a fan, so I feel like I’m searching for my favorite kind of those, amazon wipes are fairly similar so I’m liking those so far.isla-with-crown
  7. My viewpoint on Hell and the gift of Everlasting Life was ROCKED!!  I learned that there is another throughly BIBLICAL evangelical stance on Hell which actually stems from a belief of where Eternal life comes from.  All my life I grew up being taught and embracing the version of Hell that is Everlasting Torment for those who don’t know Christ, and it IS the majority prevailing held belief among evangelicals, BUT there is another theological stance that piqued my interest. After A LOT of research and reading (especially from the ReThinkingHell website.)  and going to the scriptures…I find annihilation/conditional immortality to to be more of an accurate biblical stance. I understand why so many hold to the other, and LOTS of very theologically educated people would disagree strongly with me, but there needs to be room at the table for other biblical understandings.  At first I thought… I could never say I believe this publicly, people will think I’m a heretic.  I can hear it now, “she drinks, she uses the hashtag blacklivesmatter and now she doesn’t believe in hell  she’s gone progressive, she’s a flaming liberal” (no offense to my “flaming liberal” friends 😉 ) ….  But think what you want, the proof is in the pudding (or the texts are in the scripture). I DO believe in a literal hell and coming destruction for those who don’t have the gift of Eternal Life. And I promise you this stance holds firm to the authority of scripture – of which I believe has no error. As with many things (election, the sacraments, church policies, divorce, etc..) really smart theologians can go to the same scriptures and come away disagreeing on very important viewpoints.  But I wanted to put this on here because I think we should never shy away from being women who study the word and think deeply about theology. Really enjoyed and learned a lot from this debate between Chris Date and Al Mohler on THIS particular issue. abstract-hell
  8. Summers that have the Olympics are my very favorite!! I’m not sure if it’s because the year I lost my son the week later started the Olympics a week later and I guess it brought some normalcy to my forever altered life… but it was healing in a way. Since then… I LOVE spending the last of the summer evenings joining the whole world cheering on people who have spent a lifetime doing hard work that no one, save parents, are cheering for. It never ceases to inspire me to set goals and look into the future at accomplishing things that feel impossible today.  I triple dog dare you to watch THIS video of families celebrating their champions and not tear up.  AND if the hype about black americans winning is lost on you… watch the movie RACE and it will really help you see just how far we’ve come. (and yet have so far to go in so many areas still) manuel
  9. Aldi has a great Red wine called Artifakt (Red blend – $8) that I really like! And Trader Joes carries one called Bonterra (Cab- $12) that I LOVE!  I can be sensitive to a lot of wines, they can make my face beet red and hot… but not these two. They are both great and super affordable. bonterra2012-cab
  10. I discovered #HomeschoolRyanGosling blog. Ya’ll… I found this blog searching for a meme… and it was late at night and I needed to laugh and laugh I did. I cried I laughed SO hard!! and the more I read the funnier it got. Dan just sat there and stared at me and wondered if you had to have been homeschooled to get the humor. OH my goodness… it’s just SO funny!!!kinopoisk.ru
  11. I’ve learned that it’s important to HAVE the tough conversations with those we love and call family. Be the one to bring them up… even when it’s awkward. One of my brothers is a Police Officer and one is a Police Chief. I LOVE these guys and I couldn’t be more proud of them. They are men who are sold out to Jesus and desire true justice for all. Over the summer we had several in depth good but hard conversations about the perspectives we have on society right now. (see previous blog posts about race/politics) And after having a few conversations we definitely agree on two things that these topics ARE important and that MORE conversations need to be shared between us. The goal isn’t always to agree but to share our hearts and challenge each other to walk in the others shoes and to be a voice for justice in light of the Gospel. Ya’ll… have the conversations. Don’t wait for others to bring it up, ask them what they think or feel or have been experiencing.  Tell them how this is impacting your family and friends. There probably will be hurt feelings, tears, raised voices, shaken heads, misunderstandings, and plenty of problems left without solutions. But bring it up anyway. Don’t push away from the table. It’s worth it. So worth it.isla-with-bottle
  12. If Isla were a cat… Evie would be Elmyra. That kid totes that baby girl around like it’s her job. And Isla has learned to holler when she’s wanting space to, i don’t know, breathe… so of course we all come running to her aid. elmyraevieandisla
  13. Netflix has the CUTEST kids series that came out last month. It’s called BEAT BUGS and it’s a cartoon that features the music of the Beatles in every episode. It’s like Henry Hugglemonster-ish with a much better soundtrack!
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