Seasons – Winter And Spring, Both Of Them Beautiful!

Can you all hardly believe its spring!? I AM SO EXCITED!!! And now that its May, its pretty much a given that the snowfalls are over and the flowers will be coming out soon. What a beautiful and joyful time of year!

I wanted to present some thoughts I had on winter and spring, that I’ve only begun thinking about this year. I hope y’all enjoy my musings!

(Note: none of the quotes or pictures are my own. All credit goes to the original creators. 🙂

I’d like to give y’all a second perspective on springtime, and have a discussion on what it means for us, literally and philosophically. By this, I mean to spark a question in your heads as to why we see spring as the hero to save us from the icy world of winter.

Because, the majority of people see winter as terrible. They see it as the worst part of the year. They don’t try to do better because they feel unmotivated, and they do even worse without motivation! All of a sudden, when the seasons change, people seem to wake up, stretch their sedentary mind-muscles, and commence to enthusiastically perform every task they absolutely refused to do in wintertime.

I’m sad to see people bashing winter (although I’m certainly not always it’s passionate defender!) I have lived just under half my life under the lock and key of winter’s grasp, and I have had such a beautiful life, made beautiful not only by the weather and the warmth, but because of the opportunities and people that God has put in my life.

Yes, spring gives me hope for a fresh start (and I will certainly be feeling more productive and ready to tackle my tasks!) But I have no excuse to keep from doing what I know I should do simply because I’m not in a “spring mood” yet. The way I feel isn’t a good excuse to be unproductive, and neither is a lingering winter. I am completely responsible for myself, and my actions do not hinge on the whether the weather outside is frightful or delightful. What’s inside me is what ought to drive me.

Winter is cold. Winter can be unfriendly. Winter is hard. But hard times makes us stronger.

Let’s not decry the winter and its winds. Let’s not dismiss our spiritual and motivational winters as “a stage” to escape as soon as possible. Let’s accept the inevitable as “seasons”; something to savor and enjoy, even if its hard; to learn from and do the best we can, even while we’re in it. I admit I dislike those hard times as much as the next person, but I’ve been finding strength in seeing my failings as seasons of growth. Someday, the spring will arrive in the midst of the winter of my soul.

I want to draw this all to a close with a recapitulation of the main things I really wanted to say.

  1. You do it. Not the weather having a miraculous effect on you, or the temperature rising by degrees – its you. Don’t let your motivation die with the grass. Your motivation needs to come from inside you. “What do I really want out of life?” “Why do I do ____?” “What’s the most important thing I could do today?” Ask yourself questions to stimulate the conversation in your head, and find out where your motivation is really coming from.
  2. The enemy is not winter; its the way we perceive winter. I love the allegory of a wintry, hard season of life making us stronger in spite of its bite. Please don’t feel lost or disillusioned in the winter. Live in the winter of your life. Enjoy the life you’ve been given. Take time to enjoy and savor slowly, even the hard things. Don’t be afraid. If the season you’re in is currently winter, don’t worry; the spring will come. Even if you’re in despair, wondering why in the world you keep making so many mistakes or why so many disappointments and hurts are coming your way, I pray that you would find hope in knowing that it is not forever. There is a reason for every season, and I truly believe peace can be found in seeking God.

Bloom, my friends! Have you ever seen crocuses poking up through the snow? I once saw those beautiful purple flowers in person. They bloom early, unafraid of the lingering chill in the air. Don’t wait til the winter is over to bloom with what drives you inside. And please enjoy the gifts God has given you even if you have a little snow and ice on the way!


What are your thoughts? Do you agree? Have you thought about these ideas before? What’s your favorite quote pic? Isn’t winter just as meaningful as spring? Comment below #fellowseasonlover if you agree! 😉

Have a lovely day, everyone! Thank God for the winter we had, then get out and enjoy that spring! 🤗🤣

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Start-Of-The-Year Goals Recap!

Hey everyone! *hopefully my voice didn’t echo in emptiness, because I sure missed interacting with y’all in the past several months! I’ve been an absent blogger recently and I’m excited to get back into it again! Now Imma end this cuz I think its getting too long! 😝*

I hope your goals were smashed and bashed in the last couple months, and that you’ve had an amazing start to the year! I’m checking in again after a long absence, sore in the arms and the legs and the abs and … you get the point! (Note: This post was written earlier in March! 🤣)

The last couple days have been amazing! We’ve gone to the ski hill, and I tried snowboarding both days (hence the soreness!) Although I really wanted to try, I was apprehensive about falling, but God carried me through and helped me on every run! 🤣 I can officially call myself a very beginner snowboarder.

We also saw some friends there that we haven’t seen since last year, and it was awesome to talk with them again! Previously, I had observed that at this ski hill, the “snowboarder culture” is really cold, sprinkled liberally with profanity and with skilled teens, but not a lot of kindness. This year, I’ve observed more people talking to each other – the good snowboarders even talk to the girls who are learning *raises hand shakily*, and help the little kids out. I’m not so intimidated by snowboarder culture anymore!

Photo by Yaroslav Shuraev on Pexels.com

Life has been crazy. My projected graduation date has swung from spring to next winter to a big fat question mark. I’ve been wrestling with my perfectionism and I gotta say, I need to work out more, because Perfectionism’s muscles are getting a little too strong for me! It’s also been tough to balance out my priorities with my “to-dos”, especially when every day I only feel more like I’m backsliding in my tasks.

But when I was feeling my lowest, I was blessed by the appearance of several blog posts, from some amazing bloggers.

1. “What Is Success?” from Laurel Jean

2. “Just Keep Trusting” from Keziah

3. “All I Can Say” from Alicia Marentette

All three posts were exactly what I needed. Laurel reminded me that our success should not be of this world, but for the kingdom of God, and that THAT is the purpose of my life. Keziah reminded me that God deserves our trust, not just because He holds our life but because He can do anything and His plan is better than anything we can imagine on our own. And Alicia reminded me that I am powerless to change what drags me down, so putting my life in His Hands is my only option for a life fully dedicated to Him.

I can’t fix my problems or my struggles, but God can.

So it doesn’t really matter whether Perfectionism has bigger muscles than me.

God’s muscles are bigger.


The moment you’ve all been waiting for … MY GOALS! 😅 So without further ado, behold my goals for January, February and March, smushed together!

1. Start and stay on track with Grade 12

2. Begin preparing for my first History term paper

3. Learn three songs from my piano repertoire

4. Study James, Ephesians, Philippians, and portions of Exodus

5. Use essential oils more often

7. Write letters and emails to all the waiting friends! XD

8. Work really hard on piano scales

9. Get a jump rope from Crossrope! (SO. EXCITED!)

My goals for the last three months went excellently!

(Workout Update; This is the update y’all have been waiting for! I alluded to this in a previous life update post, and I’m finally sharing my new workout obsession; jumping rope! (I realize that jumping rope hasn’t traditionally been seen as a “workout”, but from the research I’ve done and from my experience regarding the actual workout intensity, jumping rope has been the workout I like best and enjoy consistently. Instead of forcing myself to jump rope, my biggest hurdle has been to find time, and with my newly developed plan for my morning routine (more on this in a future post!), I’ve been finding it a lot easier to stay productive and focused on my day, yielding more time to do things like jumping rope!) The 1000x Skips Challenge I referred to in my December Goals post, was simply to do 1000 skips per day for a month, and while I did not actually DO the 1000 skips every single day, I am very glad I set that goal and that I now know that I CAN be consistent with a workout when I really like it!)

And some of the wonderful things that happened in the past two months …

– writing four songs at 3:00 AM

– went skating several times!

– went snowboarding/skiing several times!

– baked a ton

– wrote letters (and emails!)

– eating a cast-iron skillet cookie

– listening to Jeremy Camp’s music

THIS SONG!!! (To the fans of “For King And Country”, you’re welcome!)

– using an amazing bible verse desk calendar – the encouragement is sometimes just what I needed!

– ate a perfect oatmeal cookie

– got an awesome facial!

– having fun sketching out dress ideas

– enjoying listening to my brothers talk

– enjoying hanging out with my wonderful family!

– jumping (with my friend Crossrope 😝) and learning tricks!

– meeting new people at the ski hill

– read “The Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People” (by Stephen Covey), and began reading “How To Stop Worrying And Start Living” (by Dale Carnegie, one of the best authors ever!)


This month, I want to utilize a lesson I learned from snowboarding; When you fall down, embrace the pain. Then, get up. And move on with the help of God and the people God has put in your life.

Thanks y’all so much for stopping by to read the blog! I hope you enjoyed! Tell me; what is one of your goals this month? Do you make monthly goals?

What Are You Taking In? (Part Two: Role Models)

Hello all! Welcome back to the “What Are You Taking In?” series! Today, we’re covering role models, and their affect on our lives. (To see the previous post in the series, see What Are You Taking In? (Part One: Music))


The other day, I randomly decided to write down the women in my life that I see as role models. I wrote the first two on my mind; the first one has consistently inspired me on a daily basis, because she’s literally Superwoman and can do ANYTHING! The second woman had just recently inspired me, and I realized that although she never flaunts her abilities or skills, she has always been one of the most godly and capable women I know. So, I wrote down these two women.

But almost before I realized it, I was writing down the names of every other woman in my mom’s regular hangout group, shocked to realize that ALL these beautiful women have amazing qualities, godly characters, and are models of how I’d like to grow up and become!

Photo by Kampus Production on Pexels.com

And the reason that I was so shocked, was because I have taken these women for granted. But I have been so SO blessed to have these women in my life – I can hardly believe that they are in MY little world, going about THEIR business in the LORD’S way, shining THEIR example onto my life and demonstrating what its like to be a woman of God …

I am so completely overwhelmed by the blessing of the example of these women, and their generous, encouraging relationship with me.


Who is a role model?

“[A role model is …] a person whose behavior in a particular role is imitated by others.”

– Merriam Webster Dictionary Online, (definition of role model).

Its fascinating to see how a person’s character stems from their influences of others. When someone admires another person and spends time thinking about or interacting with that person, often they will come to imitate this “model”, by taking on their personality traits, opinions, or ways of thinking.

Role models can be highly motivating. Seeing the success or accomplishments of someone else helps us to think “I can do that too!” These days, its easier than ever to know about the successful people whose career paths and life decisions we’d like to model. However, sometimes the financially successful could be morally or spiritually corrupt, and I’m afraid that my experience with other teens is what has inspired this particular post …

For an example from my own life … I have a love for the people of God. I love getting together with them for some good worship and bible study sessions. And within that group of people are several who are so inspiring in the way they’ve decided to live for God, and set apart their lives for His purposes. Sometimes, I catch myself imitating the personality traits of the people I respect: not because I’m trying to laugh like he does or speak like she does, but because I’ve spent time and thought on their example.

Photo by Elina Fairytale on Pexels.com

Unfortunately, it seems that not every role model is a good one. (Shocker, right?)

What makes someone a “good” role model?

  • Their areas of specialty align with the same basic points of your personal convictions.
  • They speak with care, wisdom, knowledge, and confidence.
  • They act in a way that lines up with what they say.

Many singers and businesspeople and politicians and authors, all those with a huge influence on the world, are not only spreading their financial or business-related assistance to the world, but are also affecting the personal thoughts and convictions of young people (and old people too, for that matter!) that they’ve never even met.

I don’t think the average teen even realizes this. They’re certainly not thinking, when they get interested in, say, listening to secular pop, “Well, after about a year of listening to this music, keeping up the news about the best singers, and imitating their fashion and personality, I’ll be almost ready to take on their spiritual beliefs as well.” No: imitation, although it may be the sincerest form of flattery, doesn’t happen overnight, and it sneaks up on you.

Now, its not necessarily the presence of something secular in your life, that can cause you to become weak in your faith; in my opinion, it will tend to happen when there is an absence of the elements that grow your faith. Let me give an example …

Without water, a (normal) tree will shrivel and die. You can throw confetti, wind, and minor hail at the tree, but as long as its getting its water and sunshine and soil nutrients, it will do just fine. However, if that’s taken away, its easier for the tree to succumb to the pressure of all the other elements, the affect of which has grown immensely since the nourishment is gone. It shows just how important that spiritual nourishment really is.

Photo by Johannes Plenio on Pexels.com

So, just as the effects of listening to music which does not align with your personal beliefs, (as mentioned in the previous post in this series), so can you be affected by learning about, “interacting” with, and unconsciously being influenced by people whose lives evidence no knowledge of or desire for the truth. This is so dangerous, because something we don’t often realize, is that we change very easily, based on where we are and who we allow to influence us. If we’re strong enough to stand up to peer pressure, we may escape the secular school environment unscathed, but its hard to be different. If we’re independent enough, we won’t need to strive to be friends with those who will slowly break down our convictions, but its hard to be alone.

Its also hard to be “sheltered” and seen as “the naïve one” … but I can tell you, it sure beats knowing what the other girls giggle and whisper about on their cell phones!

We need to really dig deep down and think “Is this role model a godly example?”

We need to really stop and consider, “Are my actions reflecting secular morals?”

We need to really study the Word so we know the answer when we ask, “Is my faith getting weaker as a result of this influence, or is it being encouraged and nourished?”


We don’t have to be influenced by people we wouldn’t want to become.


I think its so important not only to look for and recognize role models in the popular media, but also the ones that we’re so close to that we almost miss; the believers at Bible study, the friends at school or sports, the pen-pal-ers and emailers that genuinely care about us, our siblings and parents and grandparents; these people have character and have learned so much in their own life. We have a lot to learn from people like them, and we don’t have to look to the magazines to find an inspiring figure to emulate.

So, in closing, I want to mention these woman who have inspired me so much. Thank you, to all of you who I consider role models for treating me like one of your own friends, encouraging and loving me, and for spreading your virtuous example to me and other young ladies. I love you all so much and am so blessed to have you in my life.

P.S. Thank you all for reading, and tell me; who do you think young people revere, that we ought not to revere? Which kind of people are your role models, and which people can no longer be? Let me know your thoughts!

What Is An Inspiration Board …. Truly?

Hey everyone! I hope you’re all doing amazingly! Let me know what’s new with you all, down in the comments! 🤗

Before we get into this post, I just want to give a shoutout to my friend Rachel, at Joyful Creations! She just began an awesome podcast and has several episodes up already! I highly recommend Rachel’s podcast; she’s well-spoken and insightful, and passionate to share about her faith and the way she lives out her faith. I’m excited to see her future episodes! (Find Rachel’s launch post on her blog here!)

Now, let’s proceed with the post! 🤗


Earlier in 2021, I found myself on a quest to design the perfect inspiration board. I did a bit of research, scattered craft paper and magazine clippings across my bedroom floor, and proceeded to make the most cluttered, mishmash poster conceivable! It was so much fun, but I soon decided to go for something a little simpler!

Why are we so attracted to the “Vision Board” or “Inspiration Board” idea? We like to think that we can be inspired to do great things, just by looking at a picture. Its quick. Its easy. And, for aesthetic purposes, we like to think that it can be beautiful too. These are the assumptions, for those looking on Pinterest or at other’s vision board projects; that we too, can be productive with our vision board.

But how many times does this strategy fail? I would suggest that it fails more often than it succeeds. With the pretty pictures, pretty handwriting, cute little list of goals, and other little notes on the infamous wall-mounted rectangle, we can slowly become used to and disillusioned with what used to be our favorite project.

Photo by eberhard grossgasteiger on Pexels.com

How can we create an inspiring vision board with quotes, goals, and beauty? The answer is, most of the time, we can’t.

We could, if quotes, goals, and beauty were the essence of our lives. But they’re not.

Our lives are not always raindrops and bokeh and waterfalls. We’re not always smiling, hair perfectly pinned up, fashionable scarf positioned just right. We don’t always feel like writing assignments, working out, or cooking supper. And forget about always being inspired to do chores!

We get uninspired. We get sad. We get disappointed when we don’t see progress, and consider giving up on our goals. We get tired. We fall down. And sometimes, it feels like too much work to get back up again.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

That’s why our inspiration boards have to be more powerful than our own desires. That’s why we can’t rely solely on our inspiration boards to give us inspiration when we don’t feel like pushing the pedal to the floor.

Our inspiration has to be so powerful that it makes us do what we don’t want to, when we don’t want to, knowing that its for the best. Knowing that afterward, we will feel energized and motivated and pushed to accomplish what we predetermined to do, because it is good.


So, for the believer in inspiration, how can we craft a meaningful, truly inspiring vision board? (Which also fulfills the “beautiful” criteria?) It has a lot to do with how we see the vision board.

If we see the vision board as a crutch to help us up when we fall down, it isn’t going to be a very dependable crutch! But if, when we look at it, seeking motivation, if we remember what it signifies, perhaps we will do better.

An inspiration board signifies hope, hard work, and happiness. It signifies power, perseverance, and perfection. It signifies faith, fitness, and firm foundations. And while we may never fully embody some of these traits, they certainly form a worthy goal, and at the very root of it all lies one truth;

“An inspiration board does not inspire you to be something you’re not. It reminds you to stay true to who you are.”

Photo by Diana Smykova on Pexels.com

So who are you? Who do you want to be?

Are you a hard worker? Are you a committed believer? Do you call yourself a child of God?

Then stay true to that. Stay true to what matters.

And then, when you fall, you will be more motivated than a simple glance at a pretty collage could accomplish. You will recognize that regardless of your feelings in the present moment, you must stay true to who you are and what you love, and the God who gave you strength to fight for the Truth.

(I hope you all enjoyed this post and found some gems to take home! Let me know what you think! Also, stay tuned for the next post; How To Craft And Design A Vision Board!)

What Were My December Goals! (+ Inspiration)

Hel-lo, every single one of you awesome people! I can hardly believe its winter again, back in the school routine, back in the chilly frost, and, of course, the eager anticipation of hot chocolate and apple cider! I can say it with a vengeance, especially because we had a beautiful summer and fall where I live, and I enjoyed it so thoroughly that its time for me to enjoy winter just as thoroughly! 😄

I’m so excited to be all cozy in the house while the snow falls outside; to learn beautiful new music on the piano and write songs of God’s faithfulness; to curl up with the Bible and notebook and delve again into the Word; to work hard in this season of work in the hopes that something beautiful and successful will come of it; to give encouragement to others who are in the dumps or struggling; to write letters and emails galore (always at the top of my to do list *cough cough*); and to learn and grow as much as is humanly possible!

I’ve got a set of new goals (following a friend’s advice and prompting questions.) I hope to focus on my favorite hobbies and interests, an idea previously unheard of for me. XD Its my last year of high school *fingers crossed* and so I want to narrow in on a couple of my subjects so I can be a master in them by the end of the school year. I’d love to improve and become more dedicated in my piano, writing, bible study, outdoor leadership, and home-making skills. While I’m going to be studying a lot of different subjects, I hope to become better at these skills because they’re universal, and preparation for life and for the opportunities I hope to take advantage of someday.

Also, my friend Allie over at “The Art Of Blooming”, made a post this month, challenging her readers to make (and smash!) some goals, and promoting a giveaway that she’s hosting! I decided not to participate in the giveaway, but I did make this goals post! (I loved Allie’s goals, because they show a real heart for the future and a commitment to what matters most; loving God and loving people (Danny Gokey, anyone?) So please be sure to check out her post here and make a goals post, if you’re a last-minute kinda person!)


Can you believe its 2022? Can you believe that some of us are fast-approaching graduating? I’ve thought back to my notebook pages where my little seventh grade self planned out my entire high school math curriculum. I shake my head now, because I didn’t follow that plan! In fact, my plans have often changed regarding curriculum, but for the better, every time.

Its easy to see why we change plans. Maybe a course was too much for us, so we switched to one with a lighter workload. Maybe we wanted a challenge, so we sought out an adventure. Maybe our convictions held us back from doing something we wanted to do, or pushed us towards something we wouldn’t have otherwise chosen. Such is life; we are always changing, always growing, but still staying true to who we are and what we believe.

Photo by Aleksey Kuprikov on Pexels.com

What is not so easy to see, is why God changes our plans. Sometimes, we’ve dreamed and thought and prayed, but it just isn’t possible or scripturally supported. We work hard and have a goal, but our convictions and values clash with those of this world. Its easy to be tempted to give up on values to get what we want, to compromise just this once so we can touch the sky …

But eventually you’ll fall back to the ground again, and then comes another opportunity for compromise. And another. And another. And with each compromise, you lose yourself and become someone else.

So don’t compromise. I know its hard not to be able to do something you’ve forever dreamed of, or to give up something you’ve always loved. But if taking the pleasant path means going against what you believe, then I’d suggest that what started out looking pleasant, might turn out to involve a lot more heartache than you’re anticipating.

So don’t compromise. Follow the light. Walk the narrow way. Don’t give in to the temptation to conform. Because we are not called to do what we want. We are called to be different.

” I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”

~ Romans 12:1-2, ESV

How have all of your goals been doing, my people? Recently, I finished my term papers for Grade 11, and I am so psyched about that!! I just started Grade 12 and have been really enjoying the amazing subject matter in my Grade 12 courses from the Ron Paul Curriculum, an awesome liberty-minded online homeschool curriculum. I highly recommend it for those who are considering homeschooling, and who are able and willing to do college-level work! I’m currently taking American history, American literature, and Government. (Take a wild guess where my interests lie! 😉)

I’ve also been loving every snowfall (It doesn’t make the weather any colder, it just makes the scenery more beautiful! 😂 I’ve also been baking and cooking often, and learning a lot about the art of making food. I’m so grateful to my mom for training me and showing me everything I didn’t know!

So what were my December Goals? See below!


  1. Play the piano every weekday, at least 45 minutes. Learn “Reiterstuck”, “Dance of the Marionettes”, and “In the Evening”.
  2. Take care of my skin.
  3. Go hiking!
  4. Start – and rock – Grade 12!
  5. Answer emails faster!
  6. Start a 1000 Skips Challenge! (More on this in a future post …)
  7. Bake pie every week! 😉
  8. Rock everything! XD

May we all live life a little slower, more appreciative of the beautiful blessings hidden in the cool morning air, in the hoarfrost on our skeletal trees, in the feathery snowflakes falling from the sky, in each foggy breath we exhale. May we work hard, leaning on His strength and doing our best when we ask Him for success and a clear head. May we stand in child-like wonder at the sound of voices lifted up in praise, at God’s promises in His Word, at the love He shows us every day through our families and friends!

I hope you all enjoy your winter! Have an amazing day!! 🤗

Autumn Musings; Followed by Music, Life, & New Goals!

Hello everyone! I hope you’re all doing well! What are your future plans; special days, special get-togethers with others, and activities you’re stoked to try? Let me know below, friends!

The end of summer has filled the beginning of autumn with a flurry of preparations! For some reason, our family has been super busy this autumn, so school had to take to the back burner for a couple weeks; although, for a couple days, I managed to get done quite a bit before the busy part of fall!

Autumn is such a gorgeous season; especially in the Pinterest photos! 😉 I only wish that my backyard could always contain the idyllic autumn-themed black iron-wrought lamp-posts, red brick walls, orange and yellow and red and burnished umber leaves, and pumpkin arrangements among the burlap and twinkling fairy lights! Out in nature, the autumn is majestic – the bright colors speak for themselves without a pruner or gardener to maintain during its short-lived flight towards winter’s approach.

Autumn may be able to share its glory with us without much effort – the season does the work for us! But what about when the transformation requires a bit more dirty work?

Take home improvement and upkeep, for example. Washing windows, scraping off peeling paint, and making repairs are all part of maintaining a house in condition to weather the approaching seasons. When finished, the work is beautiful. It’s noticeably so much better than before.

Photo by Artem Saranin on Pexels.com

What about ourselves? Are you feeling confident in your ability to “get back into the swing” again? Or has school and academic pressure overwhelmed you like a sudden tsunami? Maybe you’re disappointed in yourself for how much you seem to have “lost touch” with your school routine, or feel sad to be “behind” in school, even if nobody else cares.

But don’t be discouraged. Yes, we’ve fallen, slipping as we attempt to scramble up the slope of our own expectations. Yes, we’ve failed, though it may be ever so minute, or seem so to others from the outside looking in. Yes, although nobody really knows how you feel or how much you’ve beat yourself up over your apparent shortcomings; there is hope.

A little bit of trimming here, a splash of paint and a dab of water to wipe clean the little stains, a whole lot of good honest effort; and you’ll get it again. Your habits and abilities will come back. You can do it.

We can “autumn clean” for the school year, pick up these responsibilities, and honor God through it all. Don’t give up; it should be an honor to work hard for the King.

“And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, 24 knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ.”

~ Colossians 3:23-24, NKJV

In this beautiful and fresh season of autumn, I want to encourage you all to take a deep breath. Exhale. Close your eyes. Take a sip of water. Glorify God with the breaths you take of the Breath He gave you. And don’t sweat the pressure, because that’s exactly where your enemies want you. Take care of yourself, friend! Enjoy the opportunities, even if they’re stressful. Instead of falling into temptations or time-wasters, find an accountability partner *ahem .. parent* to keep you steady and on track with your school, especially if you’re homeschooled and self-taught. And instead of worrying about your grades or that tough assignment, laugh in the face of those who think you can’t do it. Eat tough assignments for breakfast. In the colloquial sense, of course. 🤣

I just want to encourage you that no matter how behind, how inadequate, how dumb or busy you feel, YOU. CAN. DO. IT!

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

~ Philippians 4:13, NKJV

Because my life is so interesting (bows to my fans), I’ve put together a list of some of my recent favorites in a short attempt at reconciliation for being gone from the blog for so long! I hope you all enjoy the following thoughts and short bursts of hilarity from my recent life!

Moments:

  • Getting told I’m a blonde, getting asked if I’ve ever heard of blonde jokes, and then getting laughed at when I said I’d never understood them. XD
  • Stealing a friend’s whistle on a backpacking trip, and leaving clues around our campsite for him to find!
  • My mom and I talking about how tired we both were, then her telling me the only difference between her and I was that I stunk! (Background: I had just returned from the said backpacking trip in the previous bullet point. So yes; stinky teenager. XD)
  • Some great conversations and personal realizations. Tough times make for tough people. 💪
  • Making coconut flour cookies, a recipe of my own design, and getting the shock of my life when my Dad, the pickiest culinary expert in our house, told me they were good!

Music

My friend Laurel Jean at laurel-jean.com just made a music swap post that was so fun I thought I’d share my many recent favorites in a post of my own! I hope you all enjoy listening to my recommendations – they’re all perfectly clean and family friendly! (I haven’t listened to all recently, but they’re all dearly beloved by yours truly!) Please forgive the repetitiveness of the artists … I know, I’m stuck in the genre of Christian pop! 🤣 If you have a favorite song that gets you really bubbly and energetic, let me know! 😉

  • “Dead Man Walking”, Jeremy Camp
  • “Control”, For King and Country (Somehow, this one always makes it onto my list of favorites! XD)
  • “Healing”, Riley Clemmons
  • “Until Grace”, Tauren Wells
  • “Defender”, Jeremy Camp (SOOOO GOOOOD!!!)
  • “This Could Change Everything”, Francesca Battistelli
  • “Known”, Tauren Wells
  • “Godsend”, Riley Clemmons
  • “God’s Not Done With You”, Tauren Wells

Favorite posts:

Goals for Autumn (and the new school year!)

  • Go hiking
  • Bake a pie
  • Begin school – which I’ve already done!!!! (Come on! I know it IS stressful, but surely I’m not the only one who’s excited!! 🤣)
  • Watch some OLD movies as school assignments … should be fun!
  • Spend as much time outside as I can!
  • Listen to great music while driving (The best combo ever! 👏)

Well, guys, I’m swamped with such amazing blog post ideas but not enough time to write them! About seven pretty cool drafts sit unfinished and unedited in my drafts box, waiting for a time when I and my proofreader are a little less busy! 😅 I’ve received some great encouragement that’s helped me to feel wanted on the blogosphere, by some sweet friends! I hope y’all will forgive me, and thank you to all who have chatted with me during my absence!

I hope you are all doing well, and, as I said at the beginning of the post, please feel free to let me know what you’re up to! And what – tell me, do – what is your favorite fall baking recipe? (By the way, my proofreader *ahem, AKA my mom* wants to know what y’all’s favorite pumpkin recipe is! 🤣) Have a great week!

My Experience With The Bronze Medallion And Bronze Cross!

During the first full week of July, (as many of you know), I took two swim courses, called Bronze Medallion and Bronze Cross, both falling under the banner of the Red Cross. To dispel the suspense which I’m sure you all are experiencing, as to whether I passed or not …

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I passed!! 😂 But for more information, be sure to read til the end of the post!

Day 1

Arrival. We covered some pretty basic stuff, like the introduction of the handbook. XD My friends were praying for me, and I am so glad they did, because prayer is really what got me through the stress and uncertainty of not knowing whether I was capable of finishing. I certainly had a healthy dose of self-esteem, but I knew I couldn’t do it on my own.

One aspect of the first day which I didn’t expect was the Fitness challenge, which (for Medallion) consisted of 6 lengths of head-up front crawl. I’ve got three words for you all: Ow, my neck! After being thrown off that dramatically, and having a long break, I did my endurance swim in 16.5 minutes, the shortest period of time I’ve ever completed it in. But, I still needed to work on it, to get it done in 15 minutes.

As a homeschooler, I’m not used to the classroom relationships between teens. But in a room filled with ten teenagers, (including my brother), most of them being your average secular teen, (or your average secular Christian), it was a totally new, but still fun, experience.

I made a new friend (we’ll call her Tasha.) Thank Yah for Tasha, because it was so nice to be able to discuss the Bible and our faith, and even to pray together, because we both believed in the One True God. Throughout the week, we shared wisdom and experiences, and Tasha, if you’re reading, thank you so much for being a friend, not only in name, but in deed! 🤗

Today was so much fun; meeting new people, learning new material that I already half-knew, and realizing just how short life is. At the beginning of the week, I already knew how much I’d miss the fun people and the challenging activities we did.

Day 2

Today was a low point for me. I was frustrated with myself, discouraged because my time for the Endurance Swim still wasn’t where I wanted it – where I needed it – to pass. But I knew that if, after all the prayer, after all the effort, if I simply gave up and told God “If you don’t help me, I can’t do this”, then I didn’t really care that much about it. And I DID care about it – so I kept praying. “God, if you don’t help me, I can’t do this … BUT, I won’t stop trying, just in case You DO want me to pass this.” 😉

Day 3

Today was the complete other end of the scale. I had a blast.

Reason #1 – No Endurance Swim. 😂

Reason #2 – We got to do Rescue Evaluations, my favorite part! Adrenaline, skill, and lifesaving? Yes please!

We’d covered CPR and AED throughout the week, and today we performed in-water rescues. I might be an anomaly, but I actually L.O.V.E.D. doing ANY kind of rescue. Sure, I got nervous and doubted my skills, but it was honestly comparable to going to a summer camp.

Day 4

Today we worked on spinals with the pool manager, and did our endurance swim for the next level. I FINALLY NAILED IT! Congratulate me. *Kidding!* 🤣 Seriously, I was SO relieved and grateful to God! As I came up from the next lap I heavily breathed out “Thank You, God!” All the other non-Christians around, probably heard … 😉

Then, of course, there was a TON of eggbeater. I can’t remember too much else about today, so I’ll skip to …

Day 5

We did rescues alllllll day! (Of course, I was ecstatic!) One of the rescues, the submerged rescue, we rehearsed at the beginning of the day, since everyone was new to it. Being on the bottom of the pool isn’t my favorite thing ever, but it went off smoothly and I was so glad. Of course, you know I passed!


I was confident for this course, but I felt unsure of whether I could make it. I haven’t succeeded so exponentially in something I was unsure of, for quite a long time, and this really boosted my personal confidence in hard work, mental toughness, and, of course, prayer.

Photo by Markus Spiske on Pexels.com

During the beginning of the week, before things got more hectic, I chose to spend about an hour in the morning reading the Bible, singing, and praying. I am so glad I was able to do that for at least two mornings during the week, as it fulfilled and prepared my heart, and strengthened me before the stress really ramped up. I am absolutely grateful for the strength I was given to complete this course and have so much fun while I was at it!


I loved the course, and, although how much fun you have depends on your personality and upon the pool you go to, I would definitely recommend other teens who love swimming or fitness, to take this course. My greatest recommendations to those who plan to do the Bronze Medallion or Cross, would be the following;

  • Book lane swims at least four times in the weeks leading up to the course. You’ll want to be sure you can complete the time swim qualifications for your area, so see if you can also speak to the lifeguards about their tips and recommendations. I found that the lifeguards at my pool are friendly and helpful – some of them my age are also pretty easy to talk to. Don’t be shy, most people love to be asked for advice!
  • Pray about it. The best thing you can do to conquer something difficult, is to ask the One who can do anything, to lend you His strength for a week. 😉
Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com
  • See if you can obtain a copy of your state or province handbook, and study up a bit before hand. I had planned on doing this course earlier this year, and so I have had my friend’s book in my possession for months, occasionally studying the book. This prepared me more than anyone else in the class, because I already knew the general ideas, the must-dos, the CPR, the carries, and other aspects presented in the course. If you study beforehand, you will not only be able to answer every stumping question, but you’ll feel more comfortable and familiar with the material in what is, for many, a whirlwind course.
  • Relax, make friends, and have fun! Whether you’re in a classroom or a pool all day, try to establish good relationships with your torture buddies! During lunch break, my brother and I were able to have some great conversations with the others in our group, getting to know them better, and also, making it less awkward to be spending entire days with them. I miss many of them already. 😉😆
  • Practical Tips: Drink a lot of water – Hydrate!! You’ll be in the water most of the time, so it can seem weird to think about needing to drink it, but you will likely be working hard and needing to replenish your water store. Also, bring enough light snacks – nuts, fruit, veggies – in addition to your lunch, to keep your energy up without getting lethargic.
  • Practical Tip: Bring at least two towels! I searched up “tips for taking Bronze” before taking my own Bronze, and was surprised to see this as a tip – but it made sense, especially as I observed what happened during my turn at the course! This doesn’t have to cause extra laundry – I just air dried my towel(s) overnight. After all, it’s just chlorine! XD

I hope these tips and my sharing my personal experiences have helped y’all in deciding whether you’d like to take the Bronze courses! Let me know in the comments what y’all have been up to lately – how’s it been? I’m glad I’ve been able to give you a bit of an update on my life, since I’ve been MIA for so long! XD Have an amazing day, everyone!

Peanut Butter Cookies!

Peanut butter is healthy, right? Then why do so many of those peanut butter cookie recipes have so much sugar in them? And, once and for all, how long do you bake them so they don’t burn?!

Fear not; Makayla is here. (Did that fall flat?) XD

These PB cookies are, to say the least, awesome. AND easy. I got a wide-eyed two thumbs up from my younger brother, his mouth stuffed with cookie crumbs. I’d say its an all-around success!

The ingredients are all pretty basic. I like to bake with honey instead of sugar, so I searched high and low til I found this recipe, which is also dairy-free. Consider this a gift to you – my review of Charlotte’s recipe. 😉 I’d just like to be clear that, although I am putting the recipe here, I didn’t make it up. The credit all goes to the honey lady at the link.

So, here’s the recipe!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup of peanut butter
  • 1 cup of honey
  • 2 cups of white, whole wheat or all purpose flour

Instructions:

  1. Mix peanut butter and honey in a large bowl. Add in egg and vanilla.
  2. Mix dry ingredients in a separate bowl. While mixing, add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients a little at a time.
  3. Roll into 1 inch balls, set on a baking stone or lined cookie pan, then press with a fork to make the popular crosshatch design.
  4. Bake for 10-11 (or wing it! XD) at 350 degrees Fahrenheit …

and … enjoy!!

I think most of y’all who will try this recipe will know this, but it is crucially important not to overbake peanut butter cookies, because they can get really dry and crumbly and are best when cooked the minimum amount of minutes possible. 😅 I hope y’all love these as much as I do!

July Goals + Inspiration!

Well hello hello everyone! HOW is it already July?!

I’m excited to start this new month and even more excited that I’m actually getting my goals post out in time! YES!! What have y’all been doing in the last … few days? 😂 I’m keeping cool during the heat wave in my area and doing some school to finish off the last day of June! Farewell, beautiful June! *gets sentimental* But hell-lo July! *spirit revives*

Is anyone else craving some rich spiritual meat right about now? Me too. I don’t consider myself a provider of wise words that satisfy, but perhaps my thoughts on this first day of July can be somehow beneficial to my readers and encourage them in some way! 🤍

Lately I’ve been thinking about my future a bit (as mentioned in this post). I found an amazing verse that helps me in the stage I’m in, as a teen girl with fewer responsibilities than a career-woman, wife, or mother. While I’m here in my current phase, with certain responsibilities as a daughter, I’m curious as to what I can do right now, for the future ahead. Within Ecclesiastes, (a book some believe to have been written by Solomon, the wisest man in the world,) is a little jewel that gives me a bit of relief.

“Nothing is better for a man than that he should eat and drink, and that his soul should enjoy good in his labor. This also, I saw, was from the hand of God.”

Ecclesiastes 2:24, NKJV

Although this certainly relieves pressure, we do carry a certain responsibility during the teen years. Near the end of the book of Ecclesiastes, there lies an encouraging yet sobering message.

“Rejoice, O young man, in your youth,

And let your heart cheer you in the days of your youth;

Walk in the ways of your heart,

And in the sight of your eyes;

But know that for all these

God will bring you into judgment.

Therefore remove sorrow from your heart,

And put away evil from your flesh,

For childhood and youth are vanity.

Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth,

Before the difficult days come,

And the years draw near when you say,

“I have no pleasure in them.”

Ecclesiastes 11:9-10 – 12:1, NKJV

There are ways that in my heart I long to follow. There are desires I have that are unfulfilled as of now, and dreams that may never be fulfilled. But as the verses above show, we have a responsibility to remember that while we pursue our dreams, we pursue them in a way that honors God and His plans for our life. May we pursue our future in a way that let’s our light shine as a witness to the world.

Additionally, I’d like to encourage all of you to let it go, if you’re feeling overwhelmed. I believe that our Father wants us to do His Will with ALL of our hearts, not grudgingly because we think we should. So if you feel guilty, pressured, or uncertain, my friends, just cast your cares and burdens on our Father, and He will give you His perfect yoke, which yields freedom and peace.

“Cast your burden on the Lord, and He shall sustain you; He shall never permit the righteous to be moved.”

Psalms 55:22, NKJV

” ‘ “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” ‘ “

Mathew 11:28-30, NKJV

(These three songs are some of my favorites! Listening to these songs would be a big favor to your musical ear! XD)

Alrighty, let’s get into July Goals! see below! 👇🙌

THEWILDFIREGIRL.WORDPRESS.COM

#1 Drink in the sun, but stay wise! (The last few days I swam outdoors, but I wasn’t very careful about applying sunscreen, so right now my face and arms are .. unbelievably red! So, going forward, I’m going to treat my body with a little more TLC when in the sun!)

#2 Swim at rivers, lakes, dugouts, wherever I can! I need practice in order to complete my next goal ..

#3 Pass my Bronze Medallion and Bronze Cross. (I have never been a competitive swimmer so I’m a little intimidated by the idea of timed swims. I’ve been praying so hard that I’ll be given strength and energy to pass!)

#4 Hike two related trails *hopefully!*

#5 Read one Proverb and five Psalms a day (This will enable me to get through the books of Proverbs and Psalms in one month, without burning out, especially throughout the week of the Bronze courses.)

#6 Wake up at 5:30 so I can train for volleyball before the day gets hot! (And, of course, to give me an incentive to wake up earlier!)

#7 Get to lesson 140 in school, 29 lessons in both subjects.


My own pic! (drinking sunlight counts as a drink, right?)

So there we go!! A little inspiration for the month ahead, my goals, and some pretty pics! What thoughts are running through your mind as July shines down into your backyard? Do you have any goals you’ve got planned to smash? I’d love to hear about it all, down in the comments!

Farewell my friends, and we’ll hopefully talk again next time!

June Life Update!

Hey everyone! I hope you’re having a fabulous day! If I haven’t talked to you lately (even if I HAVE talked to you lately XD) tell me how you’ve been!! I’d love to know what y’all have been enjoying (and thinking about) lately! 🤗 And of course, if you don’t comment, I’ll just look at who liked my post and come ask you myself, “so, what’s up?” XD

How have we come to the end of June and I have STILL not posted my goals? *brain blows up* Well guys, I have a lot of posts in drafts but the time doesn’t feel quite right to post them yet. Suffice it to say though, I hope to be on here a little more in the near future. I haven’t given up on y’all! 😂 So I thought I’d do a little “life update” post to update y’all on my June goals, plans for July, and bucket list status!

Although I didn’t complete all my May goals, I worked at them and learned a lot of huge lessons over the month of May, like realizing that I’d like to spend more time reading the Word, and I’ve been working on that during this past month of June. Even if its just a couple chapters a day, going forward, I think that it will be key for me to make time for reading the Bible, but not put pressure on myself to complete a certain number of Bible books per month. Even though that can be fun in it’s own timing. 😂

And, here are my May favorites! (Plus some all-time favorites that I’ve been wanting to share for some time! XP)

  • Some articles, here and here, from my friend Noelle over at “A Rose For The Lord”! I really loved these posts and found them inspiring and fun, so be sure to check them out at Noelle’s Christian life-style and love-style blog!
  • My friend Keziah’s podcast, which already has several great episodes. I’ve really enjoyed listening to it while doing chores! She has some really great thoughts and tips for us Earth-dwelling and Bible-believing teenagers!
  • Going hiking!
  • Singing and playing guitar in a worship session.
  • Redoing my bedroom! (Don’t worry, I WILL eventually post on this! 😜)
  • This post, by Tanyaremkiv. So good.
  • Finding a poem I’d begun writing a while ago (to my great joy and thankfulness! I’ve been scarred for life by the loss of a ton of files, so I was really grateful to find at least one of my literary flights and make it intact!) 
  • Allie’s blog! Allie is just a barrel full of fun and passion! Check out her most recent “get to know you” post here!

This month of June, I wanted to keep my goals simple. I only had a few things that I really wanted to accomplish during this month, so I thought I’d focus on those, and on recuperating and getting my strength back up for school in the Fall!

  • Go hiking
  • Help lots of people with gardening!
  • Practice volleyball
  • Cross a TON of stuff off my bucket list.

And, like perfection, it happened! But of course, there are still three days left in June, so maybe I can try to “redo” some of these! XD

School

First of all, now that it’s the summer before my last “first day” of school, I’m really stressed and nervous about getting the appropriate coursework done before graduation next spring … I’m considering doing Government, American History, American Literature, Chemistry, Trigonometry and Calculus, studying Electrics modules, studying Piano, and trying out for the volleyball team. *wipes beads of sweat just thinking about it* As a homeschooler, (and this might be most homeschoolers’ experience,) I have been pushed to the limit academically before, but I never had to spend much TIME on it. It was difficult mentally, but it never took me long to complete assignments or essays.

Now that I’m working on Grade 11 coursework, I’m overwhelmed by things that shouldn’t seem so insurmountable. It will take a lot of committed work to attain the educational goals I’m aiming for.

Update of how my Summer Bucket List is coming along …

  • Hiking … twice!
  • Lots of volleyball!
  • I have not worn make-up in months. It’s Insane.
  • Talked to people! *fist pump* That is, talked concisely and maturely. 😉
  • GOT TO LESSON 111!!! 🎉🥳
  • baked a couple things I never had before …
  • made smoothies (this took SO much work … 😜)
  • I have studied three of my electrics modules! Only thirty-six more to go! XD

Personal + The Bible

Lately, I’ve been thinking a LOT about the future, and what I’ll do in my future. I know that everyone has a different path, and I’ve been seeking God’s Will in this, by praying and asking Him to reveal my steps. It’s so hard. And its also really hard. Did I mention its really hard? XD Another burden that I’m struggling to bear, is knowing that as I seek God’s Will, there will almost certainly be things that I don’t want to do. There might be so many of them that I’ll wish I hadn’t prayed. But, according to the book of James, I have a responsibility to pray for wisdom, in faith, and to follow through on the directions God gives me.

“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.”

James 1:5-8, NKJV

One of the things that I am SO grateful for is that I am blessed with a supportive family. My parents love me in different, but complementary ways. My mom is always ready to listen, and my dad always says the right thing. (Oh, and not forgetting my brothers, who are brutally honest, but can be very sweet!) Put them all together, and I have the most amazing support group ever! XD Seriously, I have been given so much peace whenever I’m feeling really stressed, by talking about it and getting my family’s advice and encouragement on what I should do, what steps I should take … AND, by just not thinking about it! I try to do the best I can with what I’ve got going on right now, and not worrying about the future.

“Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”

Mathew 6:31-34, NKJV

Of course, the Bible has been so helpful to me in this search. Striking a balance, doing what God wants me to do as well as taking the initiative, taking tiny steps while looking up at Him every once in a while to make sure I’m going the right way, is SO difficult, and I think is the MOST difficult when the only specific and definite life direction I’ve ever received from him is what I’ve read in the Bible, which applies to everyone generally … but its not so clear what the Bible has to say on the specific details of my future career. #stillpraying


During the first whole week of July, I will be taking an intense lifeguarding class which has minimum fitness requirements far beyond what I am used to. I’m not too concerned about the head knowledge testing but have been praying over the approaching class. It lasts from 9:00-5:00. Monday to Friday. 😳 So yeah, for a week I essentially have a fulltime and part-time job. *tosses math book in the trash* *for now*

I’ve also got high hopes for more hiking, beachgoing, and maybe even some kayaking. I’ve been realizing more and more, that its so hard to “plan” a summer as one kid out of four siblings, with lots of work and chores also begging for attention, and trying to arrange schedules, but it has also been amazingly surprising how my parents have planned so much fun stuff that I already wanted to do, so I’m feeling the blessings! XD

I’m not going to share too many specifics, since I’m planning to make a “July Goals” post pretty soon, so stay tuned for that! For now, I’ll just say to all of you who have made it this far, thank you so much for caring enough about me to read this long (and probably confusing!) post! Your support and friendship means so much to me! 🤗


I hope this gave you a bit of a window into what I’ve been doing lately! I’m going to leave y’all with a song of the day, one that I immediately enjoyed the first time I listened to it, and one that is so encouraging and amazing! *keels over* Anyways, hope y’all enjoy! See you next time! 👋