Friday Favorites: TEXAS ROAD TRIP Edition

Hey ya’ll : )


It’s Friday and that means it’s time for Friday Favorites! I’m linking up with Andrea and sharing a ton of pictures today (sorry about that!)…

I just returned home from a week long trip to Texas and I have to tell you…it was pretty awesome!

We started out in Dallas…we went to Tillman’s Roadhouse for dessert in the evening before checking into our hotel my FAVORITE thing was the tabletop s’mores that we had for dessert; homemade marshmallows, homemade graham crackers, and chocolate bark….can you say DELICIOUS?!


Dining room at Tillman’s Roadhouse in Dallas


I fell in love with the whole feel of this place: art on the walls, mismatched pillows on the benches….


Dark chocolate, homemade marshmallows, homemade grahams, and a little pot of fire to roast them over…


Roasting our marshmallows


seriously, ya’ll are lucky I remembered to take a picture before I devoured this whole thing!

These were delicious : )

When we woke up the next morning we headed into the heart of downtown and made our way to the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum. My FAVORITE thing is to visit anything historical and this is THE very BEST presidential museum I’ve visited (and I’ve visited my fair share…..9, plus birth places, childhood homes, and various other historical sites…I’m a total history nerd!)


Super blurry, but this was the view of Dallas as we came in from the south after leaving Tillman’s


The Baseball exhibit at George W. Bush’s museum…if you’ve been reading for a while you know that baseball holds a special place in my heart; its something that I share with my dad and walking through this part of the exhibit with him was really cool….


Bush 43 throwing out the first pitch in Yankee Stadium during the 2001 world series just a month after the terror attacks that rocked our nation….and behind him, his dad Bush 41 with Babe Ruth.


Son and Father…Daughter and Father : )


Laura’s Reading Room


Laura’s red State Dinner dress (this picture doesn’t even begin to do it justice).


Beams from the World Trade Center


The Oval Office….


Barney and Miss Beazley


“Grateful for our freedom…Faithful to our cause…”

 After the GWB Museum we headed off to Dealey Plaza…and the Sixth Floor Museum…


The Grassy Knoll

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This was a very sobering, very heavy place to be…to stand in a place where history was changed in an instant was….incredible.

After Dallas, which was definitely a FAVORITE place we hopped in the car and drove to…


In Austin we had some of the best barbecue I’ve ever tasted at The Salt Lick BBQ in Round Rock. The ribs… My FAVORITE! 

The next morning we headed out to the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Museum and then had lunch at the Austin Daily Press in the afternoon where I had my FAVORITE lunch of the trip…they make amazing pressed sandwiches and homemade chips; you can find them in Austin at a brick and mortar location OR they also have a food truck operating in the city, either way you can’t lose with the ADP!


After lunch we got in the car once again and made our way to…

San Antonio!

This was probably my FAVORITE leg of the trip; we went to The Alamo and The Riverwalk.

The Alamo was another one of those very heavy, very sobering places to visit. Knowing the history, knowing how valiantly the Texans fought to defend their position and laying down their lives to defend it just gives you a very heavy heart…and the history is pretty amazing.

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We had my FAVORITE food for dinner that night on the Riverwalk, MEXICAN : )

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 After a night in San Antonio we packed up (AGAIN!) and drove to…

Houston, where we visited the Johnson Space Center. I don’t have a lot to say about this because the nerd in me could write a book about this part of the trip so I will be doing a separate post for this leg of the trip) for now, here are pictures of my FAVORITE things at the JSC…


Inside Historic Mission Control…the pictures that follow are of various rockets, engines and shuttles….


Earth Rise, one of my FAVORITE pictures

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After the morning and afternoon in the JSC we headed out to College Station and the campus of Texas A&M (Go Aggies!)

After a night in B-CS we woke up and took a drive around campus and then visited the George H. W. Bush Presidential Museum (two more FAVORITES for this trip!!)


Dear old Dad on campus at Texas A&M


George H.W. Bush….the following pictures are from his museum

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President and Mrs. George H.W. Bush and President and Mrs. George W. Bush are my FAVORITE Presidents and first ladies. Regardless of how you feel about their politics they are good people. I got a very familiar, warm feeling in each of their museums, almost as if you are an old friend sitting down with them and listening to them share their lives! I highly recommend visiting these tow museums!

After a great day in College Station we packed up and started our journey back to Michigan; with a stop in Little Rock, Arkansas and a stop in Lexington, Kentucky we made it home!

I would like to ask (if you made it to the end of this CRAZY LONG post) please join me in praying for Texas! With the rain, and flooding, and all the crazy the people of Texas are pretty heavy on my heart right now. I thank God for keeping us safe while we were in Texas last week and my heart goes out to all of the wonderful people I met and I pray that they all stay safe!

Thanks for letting me share my travels with you (and sorry for the abundance of pictures!)




A Whirlwind Weekend

Guys! I’m SO excited! I’m being featured today (on one of my very favorite blogs) Everyday Reading. Each weekend Janssen features a different blogger and their city! I look forward to these posts every week. I love traveling, and a lot of these have given great trips on where to eat, and where to travel in general. Janssen’s blog is one of my favorites. She always posts great recipes, book reviews, or craft ideas. I just happened to stumble across it one day via Pinterest (of course!) and now I’m totally hooked!

You can check out my Whirlwind Weekend in Frankenmuth, Michigan right here.

Janssen, if you happen to read this…Thank you so much! I just sent this off on a whim, thinking that you would get flooded with e-mails and not even see mine, thank you for allowing me to share not my hometown, but one of my very favorite day-trip locations with you and your readers!


7 Quick Takes: 6/28/13

Once again, let me wish you all a very happy Friday! I have no plans today, none, nada, zero! I am free! This may not seem like much, but let me tell you, it doesn’t happen very often and when it does I tend to enjoy it! So, without further ado, let’s get to the takes!

1.) From Friday to Monday, I was in Indianapolis, Indiana attending the 28th General Assembly of the Church of the Nazarene. It was amazing! The city, the thousands of Nazarenes from around the world, the worship services, the Missionaries, all of it! I loved hearing all of the languages as we recited The Lord’s Prayer! All of the voices and languages mingling with each other as we sang! General Assembly happens every four years, and this year happened to be an election year. Two of our General Superintendents retired this year, and our delegates elected two new Generals! It is such a fun election process, and I was able to watch the entire Assembly (that I wasn’t there for in person) via live stream on the General Church website! I can’t wait ’til 2017, and look forward to what these next four years hold for the Church!

2.) Monday, we headed home…by way of Shipshewanna. I visited a few quilt shops in town, and had to leave them both before doing any serious damage to my bank account! It was fabric galore, and I may have drooled just a bit! While in town, we ended up eating lunch at the Blue Gate Restaurant. It was awesome! The Blue Gate also houses a theater, where they are currently performing Half Stitched the Musical. Half Stitched is based off of the book, The Half Stitched Amish Quilting Club. I LOVED this book! I would love to take more time and go down to see the show, wander around those shops a little longer, and take a buggy ride! I can’t wait to get back to Shipshewanna! 
3.) Wednesday was spent with Grandma. Gram didn’t want to be home that day, and I can’t say I blame her. It was June 26th, four years ago, that Grandpa was called home to be with the Lord. His battle with cancer was finally over. He passed at home, Mom was with him that day, and I was with Gram. It was pretty hard on her that day, and honestly it still is pretty hard for us. I don’t do this often, but on Wednesday it seemed like all of my stress, and frustration from the past few weeks, and memories of Gramps all came flooding in at once and I ended up a crying, emotional mess during orchestra rehearsal (of course, I was able to pass it off as being blessed by the Holy Spirit, it WAS a pretty powerful song). 
4.) Okay, I need some advice….I will spare you all of the details, but I’ve been having lots of stomach issues lately, and I think I may be on to something. I started thinking of how my eating habits have changed, and all I could come up with is that in the last two weeks I’ve gone from eating absolutely NO Greek yogurt (or yogurt of any kind for that matter,) to eating it every day. Is it possible that this could mess with my digestive system, or throw it out of whack?? Any help would be appreciated!!
5.) I’m currently reading While We Were Reading Downton Abbey, I’m not very far into it, but I highly recommend it! It is a great mix of characters and personalities, seriousness and levity. It makes for a very fun read! Check it out, you won’t regret it! 
6.) I’m hoping to work on my quilt some more this weekend. I’d like to at least add the rest of the panels by July! It was (is) on my summer bucket list, and I’m really hoping to have it done soon! If I do add to it, I’ll try and get some pictures up! Wish me luck! 
7.) I’m linking up with Jen like I do! Head on over to Conversion Diary and check out all of the other Quick Takes! Sorry for cheating, and using that as take number 7, it’s been a really slow week, and I honestly couldn’t come up with anything else worth while!
Enjoy your weekend! 

Somos Sagrados

Somos Sagrados…..We Are Holiness

I just got home from a weekend in Indianapolis attending the 28th General Assembly for the Church of the Nazarene, and let me tell you….it was amazing! 20,000 Nazarene clergy and laypeople from around the globe converged on Indy, for the quadrennial meeting of the denominational leaders, delegates, and guests (like myself!).

My favorite part of the whole time I spent down there was the worship services, being able to worship the Lord surrounded by so many different languages, hearing voices lifted in prayer in more languages and dialects than I can count, and the fact that there is something so powerful connecting each and every one of us!

One of my very favorite speakers is General Superintendent, Dr. J.K. Warrick. Dr. Warrick was assigned the topic: We Are Holiness. Guys, this message was amazing! Not only did it completely embody the whole focus of the Nazarene Church, but it was presented in a way that was so accessible to all of us. It was a message on salvation, and sanctification. Heart Holiness. God wants all of us, not just what we are willing to give, he wants everything we have, everything that we are. He wants our plans, our lives, ALL.OF.US. He wants us to surrender everything to Him so that we can be filled with the fire of the Holy Spirit!

If we surrender to Him, there will be nothing that can hold us back from the in-filling of the Spirit! Guys! This is what it’s all about! We are HOLINESS! God wants us to have entire sanctification, heart holiness…this is what the Nazarene Church is about, what we were founded on, THIS…THIS RIGHT HERE is what we believe!!!


Blessings all,

P.S if you are new here, and want some added information check out my “What I Believe” tab up top!

7 Quick Takes: Travel Edition

Happy Friday!! I’m going to get right down to the takes today!

1.) I love love LOVE to travel! I love road trips, and would much rather drive to my destination than fly. I usually take a “car bag” with me, loaded up with everything that I need for the drive, without having to pull it out of my suitcase. My “car bag” is usually my Vera Bradley Laptop Backpack. (seen here in Plum Crazy)

I load this baby up with books, snacks, cough drops, band-aids, sun screen, any tech-y thing that I may need. Sunglasses, you name it! This is the perfect travel bag! 
2.) I read in the car….and have been known to finish a few books while on vacation. I love it, but I have to pace myself so I take ONE book and my Kindle. This year my one book will be Les Miserables, and everything else is on my Kindle. Some of the titles on my Kindle are: While We Were Watching Downton Abbey, Code Name Verity (as recommend by Janssen), The Heiress of Winterwood just to name a few. 
3.) When on a trip I take tons of pictures. I don’t do anything with them right away though. I’ll take 5 of 10 pictures of the same things from different angles, different perspectives, or different light. I clean out the camera at the end of the day. The ones I don’t like I delete and the ones I do like I’ll upload to the computer that night and get them off my memory card to create more space for the next day. This method has always worked for me…and depending on the length of my trip I could get prints at Walgreen’s each day if I wanted to. 
4.) I pack light. I pack (depending on the length of the trip) 4-6 shirts, 5 pairs of pants, 4-5 cardigans or jackets, and 2 pairs of shoes. I can mix and match items to create tons of outfits this way. It makes packing much easier, makes my bag lighter, and gives me room for souvenirs on the way home. If I need to (and have facilities available) I can do laundry in between, but this just makes for a much easier packing situation. 
5.) When I travel, I love having a cross-body purse. It keeps my hands free, I can feel it against my body, and mine holds a ton! I love that I can go to a market and not worry about where my bag is, I can carry packages, and I don’t have to set it down in a restaurant. I love the new Vera Bradley Convertible Cross-Body (seen here in Limes Up)
This is my favorite travel bag! 
6.) Favorite road trip destinations include: Washington D.C, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Boston, and Savannah. 
7.) As always, I’m linking up with Jen and the rest of the crew. Head over to Conversion Diary to check out more Quick Takes!
Have a fantastic weekend, and I will see you again in about two weeks! 

7 Quick Takes: 3/1/13

Happy March 1st! I don’t want to tempt fate when I say this, but I will be enjoying a nice relaxing Friday today, and to start off my relaxing day….joining Jen at Conversion Diary for some Quick Takes.

Here we go!

1.) It is no secret that I love books, and I I am not ashamed to say that I LOVE used books. Used books are a story all their own (and they are dirt cheap!!). I just bought (from A Countess Below Stairs and An American Heiress . From what I understand they have kind of a Downton feel to them, and I spent next to nothing to get them. I will let you know more once I have a chance to read them, but I’m pretty excited!

2.) I ventured out to Goodwill this week, and I bought three items….you can see my post about them here….I’m a pretty frugal  thrifty person. I have already done some prep work with what I bought,

I tore out shoulder pads…literally tore them out, they were held on with Velcro!! I then used my trusty seam ripper, and separated the two halves of the dress. It will eventually be turned into two separate pieces, a skirt, and shirt/jacket/multipurpose item.

3.) Also from Goodwill, I bought this gorgeous purple dress.

I payed $12.00 for it, it was smaller than what I would normally wear, and it still had it’s original tags on it.

this is a one hundred dollar dress! I couldn’t pass up this kind of deal! I spent a looooooooooong time inspecting this dress, and I now have a wonderful (wearable!!!) skirt! (I will post a short tutorial later, it was pretty easy to do though).

I know it looks uneven, but that is just the hi-low hem!!

4.) Here is another from Goodwill: Brand new, right size, just a little shorter than I prefer, cute with jeans or leggings,

Have I mentioned how much I just adore Goodwill!

5.) I have begun to work on my vacation scrapbook. I bought a Smash Book, and it’s pretty plain just as it is so I spiced things up a little bit by doing a Disney inspired theme on the cover.

6.) I bought the ingredients this week to make this recipe that Janssen posted. It is a vegan Thai Butternut Squash soup and it looks delicious! I can’t wait to give it a try. I will let you know how it turns out! I have never tried anything like this before…but I love butternut squash, and any time that I can find some new way to cook with it I’m willing to try anything!

7.) I always try to find a good way to end these posts, something that sort of ties all of my random ramblings together. There is nothing that can do that this week. I think my post may be too random, however among the randomness there is beauty. Like the things that I find and buy at Goodwill. Someone looked at that odd yellow dress and tossed it out, but I can see the beauty in it….with some work the beauty comes out. Much like our Creator, we may not see beauty, or meaning in ourselves or other things, but with the Creator always sees the beauty in what we see as random, or meaningless.

Have a great Friday everyone, and a great weekend. Check back later in the week for those tutorials, I’ll try to have them up so you can see the finished products…..if you’re interested that is.


7 Quick Takes: 2/22/13

Joining up with Jen at Conversion Diary for yet another edition of Quick Takes….I’m going to get right to it because I have to be at work soon, so….away we go!

1.) I am heartbroken after the end of Downton Abbey Sunday night. I won’t give anything away I promise….I just want to let you know that I’m quite upset after what took place…..

2.) Also on Sunday nights, I watch Food Network’s Worst Cooks in America and it makes me so, so, so grateful for the fact that my mom taught me to cook at a young age. I LOVE to be in the kitchen cooking so needless to say this is one show that I hope never to be on.

3.) Sticking to the TV theme that I inadvertently created…in March I will once again be trying my hand at the Jeopardy College test…… what could possibly go wrong?!

4.) Saturday I am heading back to my old high school to hear the bands play in Michigan State Band and Orchestra Festival. I always loved festival as a student, but I’m pretty excited to sit in the audience for the whole process. From the stage performance to the sight reading room…it should be fun to be on the other side of things for once!

5.) I stopped scrapbooking after high school, when we had to do the mandatory (read: ridiculous) senior scrapbook. I already had many, many, many scrapbooks that I had done on my own and when I was done with the senior book I gave away a lot of my supplies, and just started storing my photos in boxes….that is, until I discovered the Smash Book via Pinterest. The link is to a blog from a woman who will tell you the best ways to use the book and it’s pretty much fool proof!

6.) I picked up a Smash Book for myself last week and can’t wait to use it while on vacation this year! We will be heading to Disney World in Orlando! I was seven years old the last time, and I don’t remember a lot about the trip, and I’m looking forward to ten days in the sun, with my family, and just relaxing! There is one souvenir that I am looking for, and maybe one of you can help me…..

via Pinterest…links to generic tumblr with no added info
we still have a LOOOOOOOOONG time to plan our trip, and I’m not entirely sure yet where we may be going as far as Disney Parks, but I am so excited for this trip with my family!
7.) Let me leave you with a this……
Our choir and orchestra did this song on Sunday morning, and each and every time I play it I get to a point where I have to just put my horn down, and bask in the glory of the Holy Spirit. This is Keith and Kristin Getty’s, The Power of The Cross….enjoy!