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Monday, April 9, 2012

sailboats, sand & perfect iced coffee.


  There's something about the sea that inspires me. I love the way the waves crash against a thirsty shoreline, the way the sun shines a little brighter and warmer on golden sand, the way sea birds fly above sailboats - freely, without any particular place to go. Every time I go to the beach, I take away not only a few seashells, a suntan, and sand in everything I own - but most importantly, a new perspective.


I've been thinking about life and the unexpected that throws itself in our path, changing our Plan A to Plan B or C...or D. And how, perhaps more than the actual plans we make that are changed through life's course, our lives are shaped more by our attitudes and how we handle the change of plan than by the actual change itself. How being purposeful about changing our perspective on life can change everything.

This weekend, my Easter was spent a little differently than usual, which was uncomfortable at first, but when I chose to embrace it and love it - it actually became very beautiful. And the moments spent close to sparkling water were a highlight of the day, celebrating Christ dying for sin all because He loves us. 


   I've been thinking this week about life's unexpectedness. How it throws us for a loop and how we must adapt. And I've challenged myself to the thought - when life goes left and I planned for right .... how do I respond? Honestly, I've noticed my response is less than happy.... on the outside I may force a smile, but inwardly...when my plan doesn't work out, my first response is not to instantly embrace the unexpected and trust God wholeheartedly. No... in all honesty, my first response is usually to want to throw a fit - complete with complaining, grumbling, a bad attitude, and a downcast demeanor (something more akin to Eeyore than I'd really like to admit!) But this isn't how I desire to live...this isn't how a daughter of the King Jesus responds... And so, as time has passed through my life and I've grown and learned that we don't always get Plan A, I've actually found that choosing joy - choosing trust, choosing to embrace life in all it's messiness and unexpectedness - instead of throwing it out the window when I don't get what I want - is actually a beautiful thing.


I am finding that the unexpected in our lives is an opportunity to grow. An opportunity to trust God. And to find beauty. To take all life offers us, all God allows into our lives, even the things we did not ask for, want, or expect - and making something grand of it.

I read this beautiful quote in a book last week -
 

"Tell me,

what is it you plan to do with your

one wild and precious life?"

-Mary Oliver


I want to embrace my one wild and precious life. Do you?


How tragic to come to the end of my days and realize I wasted my time wishing for what I did not have, pining over the loss of my "Plan A". No... I want to really live. To be fearless. To jump headfirst into all this beautiful, crazy and always-messy life. To do all I can for the Lord in this time He's given me to live on this earth. To not be weighed down by self-pity, fear, and a bad attitude. To choose to wrap my arms around and embrace the beautiful things...

the wild and precious things, like...

{sailboats on a glittering shoreline, hot sand, and a cool ocean breeze}

{bike paths and blue skies}

{fast wheels}

{...of many kinds}

{a sweet honey-haired sister to walk along with}

{and a beautiful mama too}

{pretty signs hanging above a small town}

{and finding unexpected pops of color in ordinary places}

{sandals just where they belong - the sand}

{and iced tea...just the way I like it}

{striped streets}

{and palm trees, bluest of skies, and colorful umbrellas}


I encourage you - look for the small, simple, wild and precious things in your unexpected life today. And embrace them with open arms... you might just find yourself smiling.


Remember, our God has a perfect plan and He works all the wild and precious things together for good.

Tell me, my sweet friend ... what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?

Be blessed!


all my love,

Erin
xo


***


Upon request from some of my Instagram sisters today, I'm posting my favorite iced coffee recipe - just in time for warm weather! Coffee can be considered one of the beautiful wild and precious things in life, right? I say oh yeah.


***


Erin's Favorite Iced Coffee  

makes: 1 drink

ingredients:

-1 cup of ice

-1 cup of coffee, chilled.

-1/2 cup milk (I use Soy, but choose your favorite milk! And if you really want to indulge, use cream or half & half)

-1 tsp vanilla extract

- 1 few spoonfuls of sugar

-dallop of whipped cream



Pour one cup of ice into a tall glass (or a Mason jar is always fun)

Then add the chilled coffee (I usually make a pot in the morning, and then place half in the fridge to chill - use it for an afternoon pick-me-up)


...Fill almost to the top of the glass. Pour in the milk, and stir. Add sugar -or your favorite sweetner (I love using Sugar in the Raw, or Brown Sugar can add a rich flavor as well) and vanilla. Take a little sip to test - I've altered, added and changed the recipe in the moment to accomodate my tastebud's whims!
Mix well and finish off with a little dallop of whipped cream.
Mmmhmm! Refreshing and yummy.



**My iPhone photo drop will come later in the week -  don't want to drown you with photos!

25 comments:

  1. That coffee is perfect!

    I have to agree with you. In my case, whenever I feel down or fear doing something, I keep telling myself that this is only the single chance of me living so I must make it awesome. :D

    ~Ronida
    http://funandruins.blogspot.com/

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  2. Beautiful pictures!! And I loved your message that you shared.

    I think I am really good at praising God when everything is going great and I am really good at clinging to Him when everything is falling apart. It's just when life is normal, that I am not so good with God. And honestly, life is normal 98% of the time for me. Thank you for the reminder that I need Him ALWAYS!

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  3. What BEAUTIFUL beach pictures (:

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  4. Mmmm.. I must try that iced coffee recipe. :)
    And oh my friend! It's so funny to see how our lives are similar... I have very much had a less than faith-filled attitude with challenges in the past. But in changing my perspective to suit the plan B, I have found amazing blessings and even miracles. Love you!

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  5. I definitely need to try that iced coffee recipe - yum!

    I spent my Easter out of my element, too and I totally embraced it! Not at first, but I came around. :)

    As I'm sure you know by now, your posts encourage me on the daily and look forward to reading them and getting to know you better!

    This line, "I am finding that the unexpected in our lives is an opportunity to grow. An opportunity to trust God. And to find beauty. " hit home with me - God is so wonderful & I love learning and growing in Him every single day!

    Love you, my dear!
    xo

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  6. I love this post! And am so trying that iced coffee YUM!

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  7. beautiful pictures!
    i've followed you on twitter for a while but just followed your blog this morning! I'm SO very glad i did. I'm homeschooled and heading to college in the fall. I'm passionate about purity as well. I lead a Biblestudy for Jr. High girls too. I can't wait to email you!

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  8. this post absolutely spoke to me! thaks for writing!!

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  9. I love how you talked about choosing joy and choosing to trust. I think sometimes we think those things are passive biproducts in our lives... but it's an active choice we make! Praying that your Plan B or C or D brings God glory and that you continue to find joy in it :)

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  10. Great tip to look for all the small things that are great in your life. And these photos are beautiful.
    Sarah
    www.comingunstitched.com

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  11. I loved this post girl! So true about cherishing the small things!

    I am loving your iced coffee recipe, I've never thought to add vanilla! I must try this asap :)

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  12. This is wonderful E!!! =)
    You have a gift for writing my sweet friend! =) I cant wait to read that book of yours =)
    Who needs plan A when you can have plan G ;) Life is more exciting this way =)
    And the Lord is always good! =)
    Much Love girl!
    L

    allglorious-within.blogspot.com

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  13. I think the sound of the sea and the smell of the salt water air makes you feel at peace. You can just lose yourself if only for a few moments.

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  14. Love you girl :) Way to be FEARLESS! In life and know that God is leading you through this life in a beautiful way whether it is plan A or D :)And I must say I am drooling over that iced coffee right about now!

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  15. Your mama is so pretty! I know where you got it from! The drink looks delicious and I adore your perspective on life. It's so refreshing. Don't ever life take the joy away that you have. It's inspiring :)

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  16. YUMMY!! That coffee looks fabulous!!! Will have to try it sometime... :) Have a wondermous day friend, k?

    xo
    purposelyathome.blogspot.com

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  17. i love ROmans 8:28. Your photos are so amazing and inspiring. It's great that you're able to look at the positive side of things even when the unexpected, which always seems to happen, occurs. lovely post.
    www.findyoursparkle2.com

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  18. Your attitude is great Live in the now. See what happens it will surely be fantastic cause the alternative to life ain't the great.
    Carolyn

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  19. Love these photos!
    The beach is one of my favorite places!

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  20. Newest follower :) You are beautiful inside and out!

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  21. Beautiful post. I've had so many things in my life change and not go according to plan. I'm a planner. I've had to mentally throw my dayplanner "out the window." Ironically, things always seems to work out, and, in the end, usually always better than the plan I originally had for myself :)

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  22. I love this! Thanks for "finding" me at the girl party...and now I have this sweet spot in my day!
    xoxo

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  23. Wow, awesome post! What a great reminder for us all to live our lives according to Him! I love finding the little pleasures in life :) Like that iced coffee recipe!

    So glad you came to my blog after the girl party to check it out :) Can't wait to read more about you!

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  24. these pictures are so beautiful! the sea is inspiring! come visit me and I'll show you that it's my back yard :) as usual you inspire me. love you beautiful girl!

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  25. I so agree! I wish I lived ANYWHERE near the ocean, when I am there I find myself in deep thought and really seeing God's greatness!

    Newest follower! :)

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sweet friends, share your heart.

"kind words are like honey...sweet..and healing.." -proverbs 16:24.

xo.

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