Thursday, 29 November 2012

I need grace on this Thankful Thursday

Sweet bloggy friends, 
it has been an unbelievably busy week in our part of the world.
We are helping run hockey camps this week along with our other ministry tasks.
These facts mean that I have not reread this weeks chapter yet, which also means I do not have my post ready! 
(oopsie daisy!)
& knowing what I have in store for the next week means I might not have one up until next Thursday.

All this to say...

Have grace on me on this busy Thursday?
I sure am thankful though, still.

I'm thankful for this hockey camp, and how it's been an unbelievable way to teach these kids about Jesus.
I'm thankful for the amazing fellowship I had today with a woman who just rededicated her life to the Lord.
I'm thankful that Moose Factory is feeling more like home and that everywhere I go I end up chatting away with all of our friends.
I'm thankful for amazing friends back home and in the blog world that are so loving & supportive of Joshua and me, & just downright spoil us!
I'm thankful for extra strength ibuprofen, as I could barely move when I woke up this morning after running around with the kids all night.
I'm thankful for our Ladies bible study and all that the Lord is going to do with our current study, Unglued.
I'm thankful for the school wide yard sale that I am participating in this weekend to sell baked goods, and the way the Lord always provides money for our trips.
I'm thankful for a cozy home to relax in at the end of a crazy day!

Have a great night friends!

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the Lord. "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts."
Isaiah 55:8-9

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

a spectacular weekend

Hello everyone!
I know I have some amazing friends and family who were praying away for me on Thanksgiving and our day turned out to be really good!
God takes perfect care of me!

Friday we hosted 4 of our friends for an American Thanksgiving and the day could not have been more perfect!!
I skyped with my mom a total of 2 and a half hours that day and she helped me prep my FIRST Turkey and helped with all the other little things.
She's the best!!!

I made every single thing on that plate! Woo! 
Except the bread! I wanted homemade bread but didn't have time for that!
I made turkey, homemade stuffing, corn souffle, glazed carrots, green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, and salad with a delicious homemade red wine vinegar dressing!
I thoroughly enjoyed spending all day cooking and it was SO worth it with all the great feedback from my husband and guests!!!
Even thousands of miles away, I couldn't have done it without my mama! :)

In other COOL news, Joshua and I made our Christmas tree this year!
We made a TEEPEE Christmas tree!!!!
I'm downright in love with it!
Since we've lived here I've fallen in love with all things rustic with an aboriginal vibe.
This includes teepee's, and Moose, definitely Moose!!!
Still waiting on my antlers to hang up!

Any way, we took big branches...

Sawed them and took off the bark.
Then we arranged them how we liked and wrapped the top in twine...

Added some lights, and may still add some ornaments...

& there it is in the background! Mmm, love it!
Those are our some of our friends on our Thanksgiving night playing Cranium!

My love and me! Yes, he's wearing shorts when it's like 15 degrees out. Our house was on fire from cooking all day!

& we had the privilege of going over to Moosonee on Saturday for Josh to speak at their service on Sunday morning.

Y'all would not believe this if I didn't have pictures but as we were going across in the boat the river was freezing up.
The front of the boat would break through the ice so we could get through.
it was AMAZING!!! SUCH a great experience! 

that's all ice on the river as we went across

[brief interruption (just got off the phone with a young woman, mom to 3,  who wants to rededicate her life to the LORD, PTL!!!!!!!! SO HAPPY!!!! I love my job!!!!)]

So Joshua and I spent the night at a friends house in Moosonee and had an amazing time of fellowship, then he spoke Sunday morning.

Turns out we were one of the last boats of the season to go across on Saturday and starting Sunday we would have to take a helicopter.

(this is my new favorite picture ever, how stunning is that!??!!)

So we flew back over after an amazing weekend

God is good and we are so thankful for such an amazing weekend of fellowship, encouragement, and
new friendships!!!!!

I hope y'all have a fantastic Tuesday!!!

Xo Kristen

"Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfector of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured he cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."
Hebrews 12:2

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Thankful Thursday - One Thousand Gifts 3

Today is hard.
I want to be thankful today, but if I'm being completely honest, I'm struggling.
 It is a fight today.

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite Holidays, tied with Christmas.
I love everything about this time of year.
I love the family, friends, smells, food, traditions, EVERYTHING.

Today, being a missionary in a different country is hard.
Today looking at instagram and twitter make me sad.
Today in Moose Factory, life is going on like normal, because today isn't a Holiday in Canada.

Today I turned on the Macy's day parade and realized that was a big mistake.
Today, yes, I am being a baby, but my husband said I could, so that's good.

Today, I would love to be in Georgia with my family. 
Standing on chairs and making a scene because that's the role I play in my family.
The loud obnoxious one that makes everyone laugh.

It is well with my soul.

"Gratitude bestows reverence, allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies, those transcendent moments of awe that change forever how we experience life and the world."
-Sarah Ban Breathnach

In chapter 3 of Ann Voskamp's 1000 Gifts, she discovered something that would change her life forever.
She discovered real thankfulness.
She discovered her list.

She found little things throughout her day as simple as having mail in the mailbox, and she chose to be thankful.

I'm so grateful for these little reminders.
I am choosing to open my eyes to thankfulness.
To find it in everything.

Today, I am grateful for:
1) Being EXACTLY where the Lord has called me to be
2) Being married to a man who is sensitive and understanding
3) Sharing Jesus as my "full time" job
4) A bed to sleep in, a cabinet/fridge full of food, and heat to warm my house
5) Family back home that love and miss us dearly
6) The accountability in my relationship with the Lord through leading the women in my church
7) Talking to my Grandma in California on the phone
8) This text I just got from my sister: "Happy Thanksgiving! I just danced around the living room with dad! That was very YOU like!" Indeed, it is very ME like.
9) Friends that the Lord gave us in Moose Factory whom I will be cooking an American Thanksgiving dinner for tomorrow evening.
10) the wonderful life I've been blessed with and all the amazing memories I've had. Many people don't look forward to the Holidays because they don't have good memories, I'm blessed with an amazing family and upbringing. 

Thank you, Lord!!!


                     & especially thinking of Tara today as she is away from family too!

Have a blessed day friend's and a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Xo Kristen

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Thankful Thursday - One Thousand Gifts

Hey y'all! 
This is the second week of reading through Ann Voskamp's One Thousand Gifts.
  You can read last weeks here!
And be sure to check out the other ladies posts:


 I want to live. Fully live.

When Josh preaches he digs deep into scripture and often looks at the Greek and Hebrew words and finds so many more treasures than appear at the surface.
When I began to sit under that kind of teaching, and even study that way a bit in my personal time with the Lord, I began to grow and grow in the Lord.
Ann did the same in this chapter, and from it, her entire life was changed.

  1. to be grateful, feel thankful
  2. give thanks

 There is so much depth to this chapter, I don't know if I can quite do it justice.
The Lord reminded me of something huge through my reading, and I am so grateful!

 "On the night when he was betrayed, the Lord Jesus took some bread and gave thanks to God for it. Then he broke it into pieces..."
1 Corinthians 11:23-24

More than anyone in this world, I want to be like JESUS.
I want to walk like him, talk like him, think like him, love like him... the list goes on.
I'm grateful for scripture and the amazing picture we get of the way Jesus lived.
It shows me so clearly how I want to live.

As it says above, on the night when Jesus was to be arrested, which He clearly knew was going to happen, He paused, and He gave thanks for the gift (bread) from God.

That's enough for me!!!

What an example!!!!!
 What a testimony!!!!!

What a GIFT to have that in scripture and to see that Jesus did it, in the scariest time in His life, when He knew very well what was about to happen, He GAVE THANKS.

I tried it out.
Not just giving thanks for one or a couple things, but changing the way I think.
To give thanks in EVERYTHING.
Ann says, 
"Thanksgiving is inherent to a true salvation experience; thanksgiving is necessary to live the well, whole, fullest life." 
(page 39)

 I found something out in my Thanksgiving adventures.
When you choose to live in a state of thanksgiving, and when you change your thinking to a thinking that is grateful for everything, that's just what happens, you become grateful for EVERYTHING!

I think Jesus was grateful for everything, the little things:
a place to stay, his parents, his brothers, the food he ate, the clothes he wore.

If He did it, I want to do it with my whole life.
I want to live in a continual state of giving thanks, and I believe too that it will cause me to live life to the fullest.

It's our choice if we are going to be content and thankful in what we do have, 
or not be thankful and wish for more.
I personally want to be happy and full of joy, and that usually happens when I'm content.
I can choose this for my own life?
You can too! 

I can choose to be SO grateful for the jeans that I do have, and stop thinking that I really want a new pair of Seven for all Mankind jeans. Really, when I stop, and am truly thankful for the jeans I do have, I forget about the ones I don't have. SWEET!

I can choose to be grateful for the house I live in rather than looking on instagram and seeing people with cooler bigger houses than me. I can literally say I AM THANKFUL FOR MY HOUSE, mean it, and then I'm content.

This may all sound crazy, but I REALLY found that the more I made my thinking steer toward thanksgiving, the easier it was to be content in what I do have.

Our brains are amazing, it's a fight at times, but when we make it move from jealousy, constant desire for more, etc... to thanksgiving, it will get easier and easier to be thankful in all things!

For this lesson and reminder, I AM THANKFUL!!!

This week I have ALSO been thankful for:

1) homemade hot chocolate
2) buying my first ever turkey to host an American Thanksgiving
3) The ability to work out
4) The ability to clean
5) Recipes from Pinterest
6) Talking to my Uncle Todd on the phone
7) Reading a Psalm a day and talking about it with my hubby
8) Fellowship with those from our church
9) New knitting needles and yarn
10) The Christmas station on my Pandora like (no Pandora in Canada) App!

Have a wonderful THURSDAY!!!


Monday, 12 November 2012

photo dump of our Toronto trip!

I'm a little late, but we had an AMAZING time in Toronto.
It is an AWESOME city!!!

Seeing my family was the sweetest thing EVER, and by the grace of the Lord, coming back to Moose Factory was also very sweet!!!

 {We left for Toronto on Josh's birthday, so I decided what better train snack for the birthday boy than a half pound Reese's! (see I told y'all they call them Reese! CRAY!)}

{These gorgeous views make the 5 hour train ride not so bad!}

{At last, after a boat, train, bus, and plane I am with my parents and brother!!!}

{Before we left I asked several people from Toronto if they have heard of Panera, they said no, so I just assumed there was no Panera there, y'all, I screamed when I saw the little Panera logo from a mile away. I ate it 3 times that week. Yummmm}

{Looking out from our Condo balcony. The colors of the leaves in Toronto were crazy!! Stunning!}

{My love bug, getting ready to go get our his workout on with my brother}


{Toronto's own cute little Flat iron building! Apparently it was built before New York's.}

{We absolutely loved Niagara Falls! It was breathtaking!!!!}

 {I think I should get an award for being the most emotional person ever. While on our bus tour of Toronto I saw this sign and I cried...sitting on a tour bus... cried. Y'all should see what some commercials do to me!}

We had the greatest week ever exploring a new city, eating, laughing and spending time together. SUCH a blessing to spend time with my parents and little brother, and now I look forward to seeing them again in March!!! And I must do a little shout out to the best little brother in the world who missed a week of college and work to come see his favorite sister (okay, fine, tied favorite) and favorite brother in law! WE LOVE YOU SO MUCH MARKY SPARKY!!!

God is good!

{As we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who belong to the household of believers.}
-Galatians 6:10

Friday, 9 November 2012

Latest Happenings

Hey peeps!
Hope y'all had a wonderful week!
I so enjoyed posting yesterday about the book I'm reading with the other ladies.
Can't wait for next weeks post!

We have had a great week and I am just in awe over all that the Lord is teaching me. 
I'm excited to post in the next few weeks about the different things that the Lord has put on my heart and that I feel I should share with y'all!

 Random stuff from our week:

I am finally excited about cooking again after some encouragement from Rach! Her 30 minute meals have redeemed me.

Lately all I've been doing is baking homemade brownies, for a funeral, for the girls at a program I help at, for ladies fellowship, for youth group...the only problem is I can't help but eat the brownies at EVERY SINGLE EVENT. Seriously, I have a problem, and if I don't start doing the Jillian Michael's workouts that I have, I'm going to have to ground myself from sweets. Ah, terrible thought.

Check this out, now I'm NOT hating, just noticed, the left candy bar is my Canadian Halloween candy and the one on the right was American Halloween candy shipped to us. I gave some of the kids and adults at youth group some of our American Reese's (they just call them REESE), and they couldn't get over how much better it tasted. I think SOMEONE needs to talk to Hershey's Canada! :) This monstrosity must come to an end! I LOVE CANADA, you friendly Canadians you! :)

This is my biggest most exciting news of all, even bigger then the candy scandal. This here is our accepted Visitor Record allowing us to stay in Canada until April 2014! It only took us 8 months of living here to get this! We had to miss Josh's SISTER'S wedding because this wasn't complete, so needless to say we are SO thankful it's done now and we can now leave the country, and more importantly RETURN to the country.


I am beyond grateful and can't wait to stand by her side on March 23, 2013!!!!!
(this picture is like 4 years old but has always been one of my favs!)


God is good!

I hope y'all have a WONDERFUL weekend!!!

"When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of many that you care for him?"
Psalm 8:3-4