Finishing Well

Yesterday I had a long talk with a very dear friend of many years about some struggles we are both facing. We’ve spent our whole adult lives trying to live it well. Now, we want to finish well.

My friend and I have both seen Christians with good intentions start out well and end very badly. They gave up their faith, family, and future for something that was fleeting. In the end, the price was much higher than they expected to pay. How do we avoid becoming them?

It’s easy to get sucked down, broken or give up as we age. Things don’t go the way we thought they would. Plans fail, friends and loved ones die, but the clock keeps ticking, Which brings me back to, how do we finish well?

Finishing well isn’t about having that fat bank account, big house, or even the most yarn. It’s about keeping the faith. Having hope as life gets harder. Believing that God is bigger than any fear you face. It’s knowing the Creator loves you and cares about what is happening to you.

My point in all this? Finishing well means realizing the end here is the beginning of eternity AND living a life that reflects that belief. If I believe that this life is all there is, I’m going to fight tooth and nail to get the most out of it before it all ends – regardless of who it hurts. If I view this life as a transition into eternity with Jesus, I will fight the good fight to help bring others to Him. Fighting the good fight means refusing to be ashamed to call myself a Christian. It’s not just a label – it’s who I am at my very core. Jesus in me, working through me.

John 3:16 gives purpose and meaning to our whole life – especially the last half. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

Eternal life makes finishing well a beautiful goal!

 

 

Annie’s Class Sale!

Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links.

I love learning so much that it’s my goal to learn something new every week. I’ve taught myself Java, HTML, iMovie, Photoshop, some CSS, and InDesign. French is next on my list!

I strive to learn new stitches every chance I get because it widens the design possibilities that I’m capable of producing. I also enjoy conquering a technique that has baffled me in the past. Plus it’s just plain fun!

I’ve taken several of Annie’s online classes. They are very well done and I love that I can watch them whenever I want. I can also ask questions if I don’t understand something. They come with projects so you can make something as you learn – it’s a great way to ensure that you remember the technique!

Right now Annie’s is offering 10 classes for just $10 each! Click on over and enter the keycode FLASH17 to get started today.  It’s that easy! But hurry because the sale ends Friday!

Tunisian Bracelet

Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links.

This morning I was looking for a quick and fun idea for scrap yarn. It’s been one of those mornings where I wanted instant gratification – not an easy thing to achieve with knitting or crochet! The above bracelet is the result of that!

The yarn is a bit fuzzy which is why the photo appears a little blurry. It was a fun and fast project!

I started with my Denise hooks, some pretty scrap yarn, my scissors and a yarn needle. I chained until it fit around my wrist loosely, for me, that was 30 chains using an F hook. My yarn is a sock weight so if you use a thicker yarn you’ll want to go up in hook size. I worked 3 rows of the Tunisian knit stitch and then fastened off. I then sewed the ends together and weaved in the ends! That’s it! Done!

You can do as many or few rows as you’d like. Whatever you do, don’t block it! This is the one time we want the curl! The curl is what gives it the lovely bangle shape.

These are perfect gifts or even stocking stuffers you can whip up in no time! What a great way to use up pretty bits of yarn you just can’t stand to part with!

Real Heroes

Thank you to America’s Gold Star and POW families. The sacrifice you and your loved ones have made has not gone unnoticed or unappreciated. Grace, peace, and unending gratitude from my (former military) family to yours. May God bless and comfort you in your sorrow.

Quick Tee Embellishment!

I love shopping! Not because I like buying things (unless it’s yarn!) 😉 I just really enjoy the inspiration I find while out and about.

This tee was actually pretty ordinary until I noticed the crocheted pocket on it. What a delightful idea – and a fantastic way to use small swatches that are too pretty to throw away but hard to use in another project.

I have a drawerful of swatches and way too many tees, maybe it’s time to combine the two? What a fun and fast way to spruce up my wardrobe!

What fun and interesting ways have you seen crochet used while out shopping?

Walking In Faith

These past few weeks have been a whirlwind of activity getting ready for my son’s wedding. It was a beautiful day and my new daughter-in-law is a blessing to us all. No one tells you how hard it is to let go though. Where are all the blogs for moms with grown kids? There are plenty of mommy blogs but once you get into the nitty gritty down and dirty hard work of being a parent the blogs taper off. Why? Because being a good parent is hard. No warm fuzzy way to word that.

If you love the Lord and want your kids to follow Him it gets even harder. It’s not always easy to convince kids that following Him will give them the best future possible. You have to walk the walk. What you do is by far more important than what you say. Even as adults they are watching. That’s how we pass on our faith – by living it. I know my faith grew by watching my grandparents actually live it.

We live in a pretty messed up culture. I can’t imagine how hard it is being a young parent or even child today. How do we survive the sludge of filth thrown our way every second of every day? We don’t give up or give in! It’s going to be hard. You’re going to cry – a lot! But in the end, it is all worth those prayers you said through those tears.

Then just maybe you’ll be celebrating that your child has grown into an adult you can’t believe you are lucky enough to call your own. I know I am blessed and I know that we are reaping what we have sown. Praise God they were good seeds in fertile soil.

Proverbs 22:6 says it best: Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.

Don’t give up! The payoff really is worth the hard work! Keep praying, keep believing and most of all, keep walking in faith.

 

Ten Ways To Love

I found this pin on Pinterest and thought it was the perfect reminder of how to live the best life. So much wisdom and happiness are packed in these ten ways to love! I hope they bless you like they did me! Happy Monday!

Devil’s Tower

I recently saw someone on Twitter call Devil’s Tower a hill. It made me literally laugh out loud. It’s one massive rock that truly towers high into the sky! This photo was taken about 5 miles away – that should give you some idea of just how big this puppy is.

I’ve always hated the name – I think it deserves a nobler one. (The name is based on an old folktale that we all learned about in grade school.) It’s absolutely stunning with the jagged multi-color rock. There is also a very cool hiking trail that circles the entire rock!

If Wyoming or the Black Hills are on your radar for summer vacation don’t let the opportunity to visit it in person slip by! It’s worth the extra time to stop and see this beauty for yourself!

Do You Want A Career In Crochet?

Many of you know Ellen Gormley as the fabulous designer behind the Go Crochet brand. She has authored several books, edited Crochet! magazine, published over 300 (and counting!) patterns, tech edited,  is an online video teacher, and is the crochet expert on the tv show Knit & Crochet Now! Nice resume, don’t you think?

Ellen has held a position in pretty much every way possible in crochet. She also mentored others during her career — and I was fortunate enough to be one of those she mentored! I have my career because I had the help I needed to begin moving in the right direction. It was an invaluable experience that helped me define where I wanted to go and exactly what I needed to do to get there. I learned how to put together a proposal, found out how to find the contact information for submissions, and was given feedback on my ideas.  Everyone could use a gifted mentor, especially one who cares if you succeed. That’s where Ellen comes in.

Right now Ellen is offering to mentor/coach anyone who is interested in taking their crochet career to the next level. If you are serious about finally turning your hobby into a career hop on over to Go Crochet and get started today!

Pattern & Chart Reading Tip

I admit I hate wearing reading glasses, and I can never find them when I need them. My sister shared a great idea with me that I’d like to pass on to you.

Most of us have smartphones or tablets with a camera. Use the camera to take a photo of your pattern or chart and then enlarge it on your device so you can easily read the pattern or chart. You may need to take photos of each section of the pattern but it’s well worth the extra time it takes to do so. Having the pattern and chart portable is very handy, too!

I’ve also found that using my camera while grocery shopping helps with reading those ever shrinking labels! 🙂