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Welcome to my little haven of creative writing, passionate ranting, and thoughtful learning.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Summer Family Bucket List!

I love summertime.

Okay, I'm just a big fan of seasonal activities and events. But this year the toddler is getting big enough to really enjoy some of the fun things that we can do together as a family! 

I figured one of the best ways to make sure I do all the things I want to do is to make a list, and here it is:


In case you can't read the small text on my picture:
1.) Picnic lunch at Anglin Falls
2.) Host a bonfire
3.) King's Island
4.) Cincinnati Zoo
5.) Play Putt-putt
6.) Hike the Pinnacles
7.) Berea City Pool
8.) Water Balloon Fight
9.) Flat Lick Falls
10.) Make s'mores
11.) Take family pictures
12.) Dance in the rain
13.) Go fishing
14.) Backyard camping
15.) Go to a concert
16.) 4th of July in Newton Falls
17.) Harry Potter movie marathon
18.) Host a game night
19.) Family walks at Brushy Fork
20.) Berea Learnshop
21.) Go to a drive-in theater
22.) Host a Disney movie night
23.) Berea City Pool Movie Under the Stars
24.) Cumberland Falls
25.) Lexington Legends Game

Friday, May 16, 2014

I'm terrible at this. And that's okay.

One of my favorite ways to exercise is Refit on Monday nights.
I also follow them on my social media, get their songs stuck in my head, and on occasion have started doing a routine in the aisles of Wal*mart (don't judge).

But this morning they posted the image below on their Facebook page and encouraged others to help shut down the "perfect" life that social media highlights.


1.) Art.
     Painting, drawing, sculpting, weaving, or whatever else. In my mind, I see what I want to create. Then my hands remind me, bluntly, that it just isn't gonna happen.

2.) Keeping in close touch with more than 5 people.
   But I know a lot of awesome details about the five that I am in regular contact with!

3.) Dancing.
     My foot is supposed to gracefully arch left. It actually does a spastic movement to the right. 

4.) Actually doing anything with my hair.
     I used to. Then I decided I liked my morning workout more than having well-straightened hair. And, let's be honest, that's the only thing I knew how to do with it anyway.

5.) Verbalizing my feelings.
     Truly, I am much more comfortable doing something for you than looking you in the eye and telling you that you are important to me and I love you. My eyes dart every other direction, my cheeks get red, I say the wrong thing anyway, and then I make some sort of joke to lighten the mood. 
It's the definition of terrible.

So, what are you terrible at? What do you not proudly proclaim on Instagram?

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Best Advice You've Ever Gotten

"This too shall pass."

I use this as a mantra, often, in good times and especially in bad.
When I remind myself that everything is temporary, I am better able to cope.

For example, my toddler is deep into the terrible two's. He was an easy baby, but he is a stubborn, loud, difficult toddler sometimes. He will throw himself to the floor in a tantrum of screaming over the "wrong" sippy cup. It's exhausting, and testing.

But one day, he's going to be all grown up. He's going to leave my house and make his own way. And when that time comes, I will miss this. It's temporary, it's a stage in life, and it will pass by. No matter how bad his tantrum, how short my patience, or how silly our battle, it will shortly pass.

In good moments too, I cannot help but remind myself to savor it, because it will never come again. As strange as this will sound, when I was holding Jace an hour or so after his birth, I was crushed with a little wave of sadness.

He will never be this small again. 

I clung to him every second, sometimes even reluctant to let others hold him, because it was too real that he would grow quickly. I treasured his 2 and 4 am nursing sessions because as I sat there I thought, I will never again have only one to care for. I will not be able to crawl in bed all morning with my next because my next will already have a big brother. 

Life changes, sometimes suddenly, sometimes without even realizing it, but no matter how glorious or terrifying or miserable it is, it will pass. You will keep going forward.

Image courtesy of Ray Davis Photography


Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Your Favorite: 5 Blogs

I know the idea of the blog challenge was probably to consecutively blog... but I went to my hometown for my sister's graduation and was without internet or a laptop for a longer-than-anticipated weekend, so I think we're going to make this challenge a regular thing, but not a daily requirement.

Anyway, onto the topic of the day: 5 favorite blogs.

Pick only 5?
Hmm, okay

1.) Happy Wives Club
Almost daily there is a new post, and it is always encouraging and helpful tips to keep your marriage strong. It has introduced me to a community of women who are more interested in being happy in their marriage than whining about what their husbands do wrong. And it serves as a reminder to me to put my best foot forward in my marriage, even if I don't always feel like it.

2.) Victoria's Ramblings
Victoria is a new mom, young wife, and good friend that posts anything from simple recipes and creative writing to personal stories and challenges. She shares her struggles and her joy, with parenting and more, and loves to create community.

3.) The H and K Chronicles
I just love the twins that are Holly and Kelly. They post about their lives, important news, geek-dom (some I get, some not so much) and each post is written from two perspectives. They also have ongoing quote posts where they gather up the more humorous things they have done and said to let everyone enjoy a chuckle.

Jeff Cole started his blog when he was first diagnosed with leukemia. It is one way of keeping everyone in the loop on his progress, but in a bigger purpose, he uses it to share the gospel. During this entire trial he has show his faith through his writing, and it is inspirational to read.

Another more personal story blog, Jeff uses his blog as a way to process his life. And, even better, relate it to the gospel and learn from his experiences. He is always unflinchingly honest and aware of his own shortcomings, which makes him worth reading.

Bonus: My husband is trying to get into blogging, here's his blog if you want to check him out! 

Friday, May 9, 2014

Why do you blog?

Because sometimes a 160 character tweet cannot do justice to my thoughts.
And a Facebook comment is not always the proper place to write out my real emotions.

Because my thoughts are sometimes confusing, contradictory, unfinished, or shown best through edited writing.

Like my thoughts on Emily Letts.
This 25 year young woman made a video about her abortion experience.
And on my own social media timelines I am seeing her be met with hatred, judgement, condemnation, and name-calling.

That's the response I would, honestly, expect from someone not at all secure in God's love. The need to attack someone for their choices and behavior (especially a stranger you have never met) usually signifies an inability to confront your own flaws.

This girl needs to be met with love. Not our love, honestly she needs to know she is loved by Jesus. Something about knowing that you are worthy, you were worth death to save, changes how you see and approach life. It simultaneously humbles you and gives you confidence in your value. It impacts every choice you makes and affects how you see your own power.

But if every experience she has with "Christianity" is condemning her and threatening her, she is never going to know Jesus. I speak from my own life here: one reason I avoided churches, Jesus, and the gospel for so long was because I thought it was a rule book looking for ways to tell me I was going to Hell. I felt no desire to be judged or lectured, and it took me ages to understand that condemnation is NOT what Christianity is about. It is about love, sacrifice, grace, community, and purpose.

I pray this girl gets that experience and that it shines through over the hatred and backlash. I pray she is able to one day feel God's love, because no matter what choices she has made on this earth, and whether or not we personally agree with them, she is still beloved and precious and it is our job as children of a merciful, loving God to show her that.


Thursday, May 8, 2014

Meaning of your blog name?

I recently changed the name of my blog.

And, if I'm being honest, I'm not crazy about it.

Reflections in Writing is appropriate because I tend to process my thoughts both verbally and through writing, it's a logical title, but in the back of my mind I'm constantly thinking of other options. Obviously I don't want to get into the habit of changing my blog name all the time, so I'm waiting till I come up with something that strikes me, suites me, and excites me.

Until then, I'll just stick with what I've got.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

A Writing Challenge





Intro and a recent photo



I'm Camille.
I could give you a million adjectives and labels, but instead I'd much rather tell you about what's important to and about me.
I'm in love with God, my husband of nearly two and a half years, and my two year old toddling troublemaker Jace Alexander. I'm an introvert that can be confused with an extrovert as I love to people-watch and interact, I just find it exhausting. My current weight loss journey has me down about 32 pounds with a great deal more energy and strength. I work full-time outside the home in a small office and look forward to going most mornings. I am a morning person that takes pride in having a full day before I sit down at my desk at 8:00.
And, more than anything else, I am exuberantly happy with my life.


Saturday, May 3, 2014

Recreation

Back in November of 2010, Nathan and I had officially been a couple for 11 months, and to commemorate the day we did a picture date on and around campus.

Yes, we were that couple that celebrated month-iversaries.
Okay, I was the half of the couple that made a bigger deal about it, but still.

Nearly three and a half years later, I had the idea to try to recreate images.

 Here are the results:






And of course some fun originals:



Since we only had a little time we couldn't go all over campus to recreate pictures, but it was so much fun doing these and remembering when we first took them.



If you could, what pictures would you recreate now?

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Things I learned in April

So, I'm really not that great at this blogging thing.

I mean, I love writing about various topics, and I post pretty frequently, but I've never done a link up, or a guest post, or one of those link up monthly challenge type things (seriously, I'm not even sure what the proper name is).

But... after watching Victoria link up in a series called "Things I learned in _____" I wanted to give it a try!

So, welcome to my first ever link up post with Emily of Chatting at the Sky




1.) They make skinny leg dress pants.
Seriously. Who thought that was a good idea?? I quickly understood why they were on clearance.

2.) Two year old's are supposed to have 50-100 words.
At least, according to the pediatrician they are. Mine doesn't yet, so we'll see what that means.

3.) I can keep a plant alive!
So far. I have two on my desk at work and several around the outside of my house, and they are all not only alive, but they are actually growing!

4.) Lunchtime walks improve the entire workday.
I've gotten in the habit of packing my lunch, then going for a walk around the neighborhoods, campus, or down to alumni fields. Even if it's only 10 or 15 minutes it makes a huge difference in how I approach the rest of my workday.

5.) There is an Ocean's Seven marathon swim challenge.
Doing all 7 seems unlikely, but I want to swim at least one of them in my lifetime.