Oh lovely day

Today has been a good day šŸ™‚

It felt like a good day from the minute I woke up, and it really hasn’t disappointed!

I had a little lie-in, then got up for church and for the first time in about two weeks I didn’t have mad panics trying to work out what to wear [I’m not usually that girl but recently none of my clothes have felt right and it takes a proper old drama and tizzy to find any outfit that I’m happy with] and just wore jeans and a top that I felt comfy in. I even felt like my hair looked good – it’s been difficult these past weeks because I’m trying to grow it longer for this but it’s at that awkward place where it doesn’t want to do anything and I end up shoving it in a ponytail or bun – Not so today, I left it down and felt good about it!

I read my Bible whilst eating my breakfast, and I’m at that bit in Numbers where the donkey talks so that’s always a treat! Makes me giggle to imagine it.

After breakfast it was off to church, where I chatted to some lovely folks whilst drinking tea out of my favourite green mug (I have a little contest with a guy from church to see who gets the green mug each week – this week he had left it for me! How sweet) It really is the best mug.

I was serving in creche for the 9am service, and it was the most chilled out time we’ve ever had – 9 little ones between 3 helpers, and the cutest little kiddos. Admittedly there was a LOT of snotty-nose wiping and at one point, one of the other ladies’ had to physically hold my child’s head so I could wipe the gunk off his face…but other than that, we played and we sang and we cuddled and it was just joyous!

Because of serving in the first service, and becauseĀ I wasn’t at church last week, I decided to stay for the 11 am service to hear the preach. And yay, for getting to worship at both services. It was a great service, a guy called Geoff preached about how we can evangelise to people by just telling them our own testimonies. Very encouraging and I love his preaching style.

After church I meandered around the supermarket (forgetting one of the only things I actually needed, but coming home with a melon…just because) and went to a discount store to buy fairy lights for Thursday’s shopping evening…and then I came home and watched some of the OC whilst I had lunch.

Anyone else remember how good the first season of the OC was? I simply cannot believeĀ that itĀ was on about a decade ago! It makes me feel so grown-up [old] when I think that I was in my early teens when I watched it. But it was oh-so-good, and just hearing the theme tune makes you want to live in Californiaaaaaaaaa

So yeah, lunch and the OC – falling in love with Seth again, and wishing that silly Anna away because oh-my-gosh-he-is-just-meant-for-Summer-even-though-she-doesn’t-like-him-right-now-she-will-soon. Yay forĀ the teenage romance drama!

And then, in the middle of the Ryan-Marissa angst, I had a sudden burst of Need-to-craft-itis and then proceeded to absolutely cover my living room with floor, pins, tape measures, ribbons, cardboard templates and all other kinds of haberdashery paraphenalia [with my Christmas songs in the background, of course] for about 5 hours and I made some very lovely stockings and tree decorations.

In the midst of my sewing I realised it was dinner-time so I put food in the oven…but then got so absorbed in the sewing that I completely forgot about my dinner and it was only when I looked up and the flat was basically a cloud that I realised it had been in there about an hour too long.

Whoops. Mishap of the day. It was all fine though, I opened all the windows and threw away the burned food and started over – making sure I kept an eye on it. Dinner Mark 2 was actually quite tasty!

Once I was done with the sewing and the flat looked as if a bomb made of fabric & ribbon had exploded…I had a tidy up! And watched some TV (Strictly results…I’m sad Victoria went, but she just isn’t as good as the rest of the celebs and it was her turn. I hope Louis goes next week)

And then, need-to-craft-itis hit me again. So I’ve spent the last two hours in my kitchen messing around with melted chocolate. Not gonna tell you what for (in case it doesn’t work out) but right now it all looks so good. And all this to a lovely soundtrack from Colbie Callait, Lady Antebellum, Agnes Obel and Madeline Peroux –Ā courtesy of Spotify.

I’m just hoping all my crafty stuff sells on Thursday because otherwise I will have a bunch of stuff that I have no idea what to do with! But…that’s a worry for another day!

-x-

Photo blogs…

I used my camera today for the first time in a while, and when I sat down to take photos from it, I realised that there are way more images than I thought – I’ve been snapping away with the intention of adding the photos into blogs, but never actually getting round to the blogging instelf!

So, since it is snowy and cold outside (which I love!) I am snuggled up under a blanket with the lovely Mr Buble singing to me, compiling a few photo blogs to rid my poor camera of the backlog.
Stay tuned!

A really long week

I haven’t posted this week as it’s been a really tough one. I’ve been on call, which means I’ve driven around 400 miles for work (all over East Sussex, Surrey and Kent!) and had to pick up a wayward charge from 2 separate police stations on two consecutive nights which was a real joy since I’ve only ever been in a police station once in my entire life and that was just to report an accident.

Safe to say that wasn’t the highlight of my week! 2 very late nights and not enough sleep when I finally did get to bed (I wish my mind could just forget about work but unfortunately I don’t seem to be wired with an off switch) and then yesterday completely topped it off as every single phone call I took was someone wanting to yell at me…literally.

I took 13 phone calls throughout the day (I have to record who I speak to, and what about, so this is an accurate figure) and every.single.one of them was from a grumpy/dissatisfied/upset/annoyed person who felt it necessary to raise their voice over the accepted level to get across their point.

My favourite one was from someone whose language left a considerable amount to be desired and let me tell you the insults she threw at me would have been hilarious if they weren’t so vulgar šŸ˜¦

It was a bad day which just didn’t get better, although there was a good half-hour when I realised that I am probably going to win the award for Best Sister Ever as I found the perfect Christmas present for one of my sisters.

Other than that, it sucked. The day was topped off by a phone call at 11.30pm (at which point I’d been asleep for about 90 minutes) telling me that one of young people had been reported missing. Thus followed an hour of finding Social Services numbers and reporting this to the necessary people, chased up by another hour where I waited for the Duty Social Worker to call me back. I gave up at 2.30am and went to sleep only to wake up about 4 times throughout the night, completly paranoid about missing THE phone call.

Needless to say I’m tired.

Today is Rosie’s birthday though, and we had a lovely morning. I got up and decorated the house with balloons and put out her presents etc (and freaked Ro out by playing Stevie Wonder’s Happy Birthday when she walked into the lounge) and we had pancakes for breakfast. That made me happy. I got Ro two of the QI books, which made her laugh. She’s going to put them in her bathroom, because everyone needs something to read in there. šŸ˜›

I’ve already had two Out of Hours calls today but I’m praying it will be a quiet afternoon and evening so I can celebrate with Rosie tonight. Ro has now gone out to lunch at her parents’ house, so I am using the time to make her birthday cake. It’s going to be soooo pretty :)I’m also listening to my worship album on Spotify, which is reminding me that I have the perfect Saviour who knows exactly how tired I am and what I need.

Last week may have sucked, but this is a new week and it is full of grace and God’s mercy for me and those around me. I love that.

-x-

I will praise you in this storm…

I love the song “Praise you in this storm”, by Casting Crowns – I first heard it a couple of years ago, when I was visiting friends in America, and it came onto the radio. This was before I really listened to any Christian music (nowadays it’s basically all I listen to) and I just was completely overcome by the lyrics:

I was sure by now
God You would have reached down
And wiped our tears away
Stepped in and saved the day
But once again, I say “Amen”, and it’s still raining

As the thunder rolls
I barely hear Your whisper through the rain
“I’m with you”
And as Your mercy falls
I raise my hands and praise the God who gives
And takes away

[Chorus:]
And I’ll praise You in this storm
And I will lift my hands
For You are who You are
No matter where I am
And every tear I’ve cried
You hold in Your hand
You never left my side
And though my heart is torn
I will praise You in this storm

I remember when
I stumbled in the wind
You heard my cry to you
And you raised me up again
My strength is almost gone
How can I carry on
If I can’t find You

But as the thunder rolls
I barely hear You whisper through the rain
“I’m with you”
And as Your mercy falls
I raise my hands and praise the God who gives
And takes away
[Chorus]


I lift my eyes unto the hills
Where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord
The Maker of Heaven and Earth

Aren’t they amazing? I love the biblical reference at the end (from Psalm 121) – in the song it’s almost spoken; kind of as a final statement – so you recognise the strength of the truth they are singing about.

It’s a beautiful song. It reminds me that no matter what situation I face, I have God, and I have to praise Him! It’s quite simple really, but so often I find myself struggling and floundering around, getting stressed out or anxious and feeling completely overwhelmed – this is completely the opposite of what God wants for me. In all the situations that make me feel that way, He wants me to cling to Him! He wants me to turn back and face Him, draw close to Him and let Him help me. People who know me will know that I’m not very good accepting help – I love to help others, I genuinely do – but when it comes to revealing my own need: I suck!

I’ve learned through my three years in Canterbury so far that I don’t need to be completely self-reliant, that I have a God who is incredibly strong and who loves me…but actually putting it into practice, and making myself vulnerable and recognising the need for God’s intervention in my situation is something that I am still learning. Let’s just say, when I’m in a difficult place – God isn’t alway my first thought. Usually I try and figure out a way to do it myself, persevere in that for a little while until I realise it’s completely pointless, and then turn to God. I certainly don’t praise Him while I’m struggling!!

The song I’m talking about helps me to remember that God is in everything, and that He should be my first thought in all circumstances. I want Him to be. I want Him to be the centre of my world – the first and the last. He is my Saviour King, and even through difficult times He is worthy of my praise because He is my rescuer.

I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come?
My help comes from the LORD,who made heaven and earth.

(Psalm 121: 1-2)

(To hear the song, click the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uHdcyue0bSw)