Accomplishments Round-Up – October 6th, 2017

Accomplishments Round-Up – October 6th, 2017

What have you accomplished this week?

Welcome to this version of Little Accomplishments!

Why hello there, everyone! Happy Friday 🙂 I am very happy to share this post with you guys today. I’ve been meaning to mention some of the accomplishments I shared below in previous posts, but never ended up doing so, so they have been included today.

I made the title a bit different than normal to include some accomplishments that were more than ‘little,’ as some people found it strange that I would list huge, exciting things as seemingly unimportant! That wasn’t my intention, nor was I trying to brag, but that’s how some saw it. So, without further ado, let’s look at these accomplishments!

Let’s celebrate all of life’s joys – no matter how small!

Recently, I …

  • caught up on a month’s worth of Spanish. (After keeping up with lessons of language learning nearly every day for all of 2017, I gave myself an unofficial break in September. It was much-needed, and I was more than happy to come back this past week! I caught up on missed reviews and aced [most] of them, and learned a few new words. For the most part, though, I went back and relearned ones I hadn’t in a while.)
  • reached 1,100+ followers on my blog. (I would like to give you guys a huge thank you!!!! ❤ I was SO excited when I got the notification sometime last month that Dreaming of Guatemala had reached 1K. It’s the first blog of mine that has gotten anywhere near that number!! I had no idea how to celebrate, so I didn’t mention it, but I want you guys to know that I am extremely grateful that you take the time to read my posts and leave such sweet comments. You always brighten my day! xxx Again, thank you so much!)

  • organized all of my digital photos. (I am extremely happy about this one!! I’ve been meaning to do it for months, and I finally did it. Pictures are organized, others were gone through, and I named all of the videos I have, dating them, as well. It took a few weeks, but it was worth it!)
  • furnished my room for the fall. (I absolutely love it!! I’ll do a post on that soon, since I got some nice pictures 😀 )
  • learned the minor chords on the piano. (After teaching myself to play How Long by Jordan Feliz, I caught on to how the minor chord scale works and taught myself all of them, too. While I’m happy to have those memorized, practicing chords and scales and parts of songs is the boring part of learning an instrument, even though it’s definitely essential, haha!)

  • got my October post schedule in order. (I haven’t done that in quite a while; I would rough it and just share posts as they came to me, lol [which I still enjoy doing sometimes, actually!], but I also appreciate having a tidy post schedule. Next week is already all figured out! Woop-woop!)
  • baked some new treats. (The first one I made went up in a post earlier this week, and the next one will appear on my blog sometime this month, too! They tasted great; my family and I very happily ate every bite haha)
  • watched ‘Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid.’ (Since taking the subject in school where I watch movies to then analyze, I have found a few film treasures along the way – movies that I could easily watch over and over again for pleasure, haha! The two that stand out to me the most are the films with Paul Newman and Robert Redford; ‘The Sting’ and now ‘Butch Cassidy.’ They are both fantastic actors, and them being a duo in two different movies has been such a blast to watch!! I should probably do a review of both of those movies, as I have so much I could say about them haha)
Image via Quite Continental.

Comment what YOU’VE done this week down below – last Saturday through today!

thanks to jirah and elline for my signature! xx

Cultivating A Joyful Life | Happy In The Waiting

Cultivating A Joyful Life | Happy In The Waiting

It is very easy for us to get caught up in attaining what we desire. It is pretty awesome how quickly we can become passionate about reaching goals in our lives, however – if we didn’t ever have that drive, would we get anything done? I don’t think we would, haha!

Anyway, there are so many things we aim for and look at eventually completing. Whether that’s going on a certain vacation, getting a college degree, meeting Mr. Right, or whatever else one may desire, we have huge hopes and dreams. Oftentimes, when the circumstances are right, we reach those goals, and what a beautiful thing that is!

However … how do we feel when there are delays, sidetracks, and unpreventable changes of plan? What do we do during the waiting?

Hey guys! I am long overdue on writing a second part to this fun series, so today I bring to you: ‘Happy In The Waiting.’ In our time and culture, it is extremely easy to fall into the habit of desiring and getting what we want quickly and efficiently. Any little inconvenience is highly agitating, and easily disruptive to our tight plans. I know how it feels; I’ve been there. Even when I don’t have specific plans that need following, if whatever is happening doesn’t go along with how I ‘planned’ it would happen in my head, it makes me upset, haha

I wanted to cover this topic in Cultivating A Joyful Life because acquiring a stronger tendency to respond patiently would benefit all of us, if even in the smallest of ways. It would definitely give us more peace, and could also potentially affect our relationships and well-being in positive ways, as well.

Before I delve into this any further, let’s return for a moment to the garden of our hearts, shall we?

If you think about it, gardens are all about waiting – as well as the art of patience. It takes diligence, care, and photosynthesis for plants to grow. It takes patience on the gardener’s part to consider the plants’ needs and tend to them accordingly. You may want a flower to quickly bloom so that you can experience its beauty, but that isn’t quite how it works. To grow something from its seed form usually take weeks and much perseverance, but the outcome – a beautiful, thriving plant that you cultivated with your own hands – is absolutely worth it. The same is true for our lives!

Happy In The Waiting

There are times when we want something instantly because we know how happy it would make us. From our viewpoint, the stars are all aligned – we need only to reach out and grasp it, pursuing the desire with our whole hearts.

When circumstances start to not go the way we want, our happy plans begin to fade as things continue to come up, hindering our progress and hardening our hearts.

That’s usually when we start to push the matter.

We take it into our own hands instead of waiting for everything to turn out just right, as it appears that that will never happen, anyway. We do what we wouldn’t have originally done out of desperation and discontent. That never gets us anywhere.

Waiting often looks, and always feels, like a waste of time. Sitting around doesn’t seem to accomplish anything, does it? I’ve been there myself so many times.

Throughout the Bible, there are many instances when having patience and waiting on the Lord is brought up. This means so much to me, as I often feel alone in the waiting, but His Word has reminded me time and time again that I have not been forsaken. There are two main things that I have taken from the various verses on patience over the years.

First, the Lord strengthens our faith through these times of waiting. Relying on Him to lead us, and putting all of our trust in His plans, is one of the main ways we mature as Christians. There are few other things that will cause us to draw closer to Him than our times of need.

Second, He will not forsake us when we need Him most. He has been there for me every second of the way when I trust in Him – even when I can’t see His hand at work in the situation until later (as is often the case). The only times in my life when I felt alone during trials was when He was deeply testing me. Those were also the times when my return to the arms of His everlasting grace were all the more special. The other times of loneliness where when my focus and intentions were misaligned. The moment I stepped foot back on the right track – the path that He had for my life, not the one I figured out for myself – I instantly found myself at His side once again. ❤

The Lord is with those who call upon His holy name.

When I find myself growing discontent in His timing, I often turn back to Proverbs 16. Its sound wisdom has brought me through rough points in my life when I was becoming truly hopeless. One verse that really reminds me of where my focus should be is the ninth verse:

“The heart of man plans his way,
but the Lord establishes his steps.”

It is up to us to chase after what we desire for our lives, but it is His will that shall be established and succeed! ❤

Thank you so much for reading! I thoroughly enjoyed continuing with this series, and you’ll probably see me post a third addition in the weeks to come. Thanks for following along!

Let me know in the comments below:

What times of waiting has the Lord brought YOU through?

thanks to jirah and elline for my signature! xx

Hello, October! | New Blog Schedule + My Fall Bucket List!

Hello, October! | New Blog Schedule + My Fall Bucket List!

Hi there, guys! How are you? I hope that you’re all having an absolutely beautiful day! ❤

I am soooo excited for today’s post. A new month is here once again – time is truly flying by! What’s awesome about this time around (haha) is that the new month is October, which is definitely my favorite month out of the whole year! I love a huge variety of things about it, but if I had to choose just one, I’d choose the beautiful, crisp weather. Being out in nature brings me great joy, and I can only truly experience that here in Georgia during the fall months – especially October. xxx

The first thing I mentioned in the title of today’s post (after welcoming in the new month) was my new blogging schedule! So allow me to clarify …

I will be posting every day in October!

Woohoo!!! I can’t wait to share all of the cool posts I came up with for this month with you guys! They were a lot of fun to write, and I love the huge variety of topics they cover. Among my post lineup, you will find some fall treats, devotionals, different life experiences of mine, some blog awards, and so much more!

What are YOU guys up to this whole upcoming month? You’ll have to let me know in the comments below! Fall plans are always so exciting to me 🙂

For the second half of this post, I’d like to share my fall bucket list with you! I have come up with some things that I would love to do this fall. Hopefully, I’ll have the opportunity (and motivation lol) to do them, but time will tell. If all else fails, I just want to savor this time of year by being out in nature and spending time with my family!

Let’s jump right into this!

My Fall Bucket List

  • Take fall family photos. There’s something so pleasing about the combination of lighting, scenery, and fall outfits at this time of year that make photoshoots so much prettier! Whether we’re in our backyard or at an apple orchard, I plan on taking lots of pictures this year, just like I did in 2016! Below is a favorite from one such photoshoot:

  • Have a campfire and roast marshmallows. My family and I enjoy having one of these every once in a while, and it would definitely be a lot of fun to have one this month! (Below is a pic from fall of ’15.)

  • Bake an apple pie. I included this on my looking-ahead list back in July, and I’m planning on making one VERY soon! I found the recipe I’ll use on Pinterest.
  • Go pick apples. Maybe I should have listed this one before the one above, but oh well, haha! I get to go with my family to an apple orchard most years – there are different ones in northern Georgia – and I can’t wait to go this year!
  • Enjoy the nice, crisp air. I absolutely love snuggling up with a cozy blanket in the evenings. In contrast, I also love being out in the cool air, wearing a hoodie and playing basketball. Whether I’m embracing it or escaping it (haha), fall weather makes me so happy. It’s such a wonderful relief after our humid summers. (Below, I’ve shared a picture from last year of the trees in our backyard – so gorgeous!)

  • Go on a hayride. The apple orchards we’ve been to all have free or low-cost hayrides available, and they’re so much fun!
  • Watch the sunset. I enjoy doing this year-round, but hey, I saw it included on some fall bucket list ideas, and I thought that I would add it to mine! I’d love to find a place with a nice view of the sky, then drive there in the evening and get some nice pictures. (Below is one picturesque sunset from a few years ago.)

  • Make a fall craft. I’m finicky when it comes to crafts and DIYs. If it’s a fairly simple ordeal, I usually complete it and quite enjoy the process and outcome, but if I have difficulties with it, my interest legitimately dies. Haha! I wouldn’t say that I’m proud of this trait; it’s just a fact. However, I do have a few ideas for a few easy, inexpensive fall crafts for my room, so I’ll be sure to post about them if I make them!
  • Make pumpkin bread. My mom and I (though usually just my mom lol) make this one year-round, actually, but it is especially delightful in the fall! I’d love to make a double batch at some point this month, as there are so many of us who eat it (including Elizabeth), and it disappears SO fast!

I hope that you’re all having a beautiful fall so far, and that your October has gotten off to a fantastic start! Let me know in the comments below:

What are YOU up to this October?

thanks to jirah and elline for my signature! xx