Wednesday, November 30, 2011


Oh hey, I'm back. I just couldn't be gone long...

I don't really know what to do with this blog now that I've finished my 365, so I'm going to just see how it develops. :) I'm just not ready to give this up!

I just have to share something so incredibly exciting with you... we have a LIVING HOPE in Christ Jesus. Tonight we studied 1 Peter 1 at Bible study, and what an encouragement.

[Born Again to a Living Hope]
[3] Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, [4] to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, [5] who by God's power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. [6] In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, [7] so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. [8] Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, [9] obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
[10] Concerning this salvation, the prophets who prophesied about the grace that was to be yours searched and inquired carefully, [11] inquiring what person or time the Spirit of Christ in them was indicating when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the subsequent glories. [12] It was revealed to them that they were serving not themselves but you, in the things that have now been announced to you through those who preached the good news to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, things into which angels long to look.
(1 Peter 1:3-12 ESV)

I am so thankful that there is hope in this life. Despite times of uncertainty, confusion, doubt, and even in times of smooth sailing, our hope isn't in circumstance! It's in Christ.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Wow. I didn't think I'd ever really get to this day! 365 consecutive days of thanks to my incredible Father for so many gifts.

Occasionally I'll go back to specific points over the last year and read what I was learning or what was going on- there were fun times like when I'd go on little dates with Daniel and Benton,  when Grammie and  I visited Monroe and Katie in Dallas, Matt and Rach's home make-over family-style edition :), or even when my best friend had her first little boy who we prayed would come for a long time! There were also days where I remember arguing verbally with God- " I just don't want to thank you today!" Yet, I had to. (it's the rule!) In fact, often when those days hit (which was more often than I would ever care to admit) I would pull up this blog and start reading truth. God cares for me and has blessed me.

This year has been a year of tremendous growth in my heart. I can tell you that today I realize how much MORE desperately I need to love God than I realized a year ago. I constantly struggle and will continue to battle my heart and my flesh (which are deceitful and desperately wicked!), but the blessing is that I have an amazing creator and PROVIDER who is continually pouring His grace on me with so many good gifts.

To close this "chapter" in my journey I leave you with the greatest gift we can praise God for (which also goes back to day 1 of this journey)...  Jesus.  Even on the days when we can hardly look up, we can remember our freedom in Christ. We can remember the love of a Savior who was willing to take our sin for us- a substitutionary death- so that we can experience life. TRUE life. Eternal life. A life filled with praise and thanks to our incredible Father who can only do good. It's His nature. He is WORTHY to receive praise.

So, Jesus, Thank you for how you've used this little insignificant blog to start a transforming work in my heart. Continue it. And help all who stumble upon this "Journey" to know that they are blessed- even for the smallest of gifts from you. For breath, for the ability to laugh and breathe and walk, for times of joy and sorrow, for the ability to LIVE- gifts. And for the cross, wow... Jesus, Thank you.

Monday, November 28, 2011


Thankful for music and how God receives glory through so many different types. He is so creative- I LOVE that about Him.

Tonight I went to a Ricky Skaggs concert (and those of you who know who that is are some of the first who will enter those pearly gates ;)), and it was incredible. Their percussionist passed away last night while he was sleeping on the bus-- he had been battling cancer but it was actually his heart that failed. So tonight the concert was in honor of him. It was- wow- moving.

Thankful that Aunt Resa invited me to join their family! (they are family!) Love the Millsaps.

The only negative about going to the concert was that
we had to leave this little guy (and Kendall) at the house with
Gigi and Boppa. They got to babysit. :) Would have been fun!!
Precious Calvin (2 months) is getting so big and handsome!

Sunday, November 27, 2011


Taken from the Valley of Vision, which I think is a book that EVERY believer should own. It's a book of old puritan prayers, and has been such a blessing to me in guiding me to pray, especially when I don't exactly know what to pray or when God is specificially dealing with me in a particular area. Came across this one today and it was convicting. 


O Thou that hearest my prayer,
Teach me to pray.
I confess that in religious exercises
the language of my lips and the feelings
of my heart have not always agreed,
that I have frequently taken carelessly upon
my tongue a name never pronounced above
without reverence and humility,
that I have often desired things which would
have injured me,
that I have depreciated some of my chief mercies,
that I have erred both on the side of my hopes
and also of my fears,
that I am unfit to choose for myself,
for it is not in me to direct my steps.
Let thy Spirit help my infirmities,
for I know now that to pray for as I ought.
Let him produce in me wise desires by which
I am ask right things,
then I shall know thou hearest me.
May I never be importunate for temporal blessings,
but always refer them to thy fatherly goodness,
for thou knowest what I need before I ask;
May I never think I prosper unless my soul prospers,
or that I am rich unless rich toward thee,
or that I am wise unless wise unto salvatino.
May I seek FIRST THY KINGDOM and its righteousness.
May I value things in relation to eternity.
May my spiritual welfare by my chief solicitude.
May I be poor, afflicted, despised and have
thy blessing, rather than be successful in enterprise,
or have more than my heart can wish,
or be admired by my fellow-men,
if thereby these things make me forget thee.
May I regard the world as dreams, lies, vanities,
vexation of spirit,
and desire to depart from it.
And may I seek my happiness in thy favour,
image, presence, service.

Convicted... can I truly pray this? Thankful for the work of the Spirit.

Saturday, November 26, 2011


Merry Christmas!

Christmas tradition, here we come.

Since we were very little our family has had a tradition of going to the Merry Christmas tree farm and picking out our tree. Each of the children (all 5 of us... lots of trees to choose from!) would pick one, and then we'd go to each tree and put in our vote. I must say that when we were little 4 of the 5 children usually drove away from the tree farm crying (literally), and we have grown a LITTLE past this point, but it is still a very, VERY fierce competition.

I am soooo glad Katie could join us on this venture, though I am pretty upset that her tree won the FIRST year she came!!! It's not fair. I've tried to win for years. YEARS! :)

Sarah and Little D on their way to pick out the PERFECT tree!
(Sarah is a terrible tree-picker though.... and though she will tell you her
tree wins every other year, it's not TRUE!)

Katie and I wanted this one :)

We can NEVER agree on a tree.... 

Dad's always indifferent
Voting on MY tree.... obviously Daniel was being swayed by his mom's vote. Unbelievable.
I think Katie was arguing her point on why this tree should win.... I fell for the speech!

This is how it goes... every year... except this year we didn't all leave (well, all but the one whose
tree was picked) in tears :)

Might I say that despite her best efforts, Sarah's tree was NOT picked!

Missing Rach and Kathryn right about NOW!
(and Benton and Matt.... ) :)

Daniel helped daddy saw down the tree


Time for the men to do their job!

Glad Jon could join us :)
We might not be normal, but we have FUN!!!!
Katie and Sarah- always up to no good. :)
Embrace family.

Daniel wanted to "help" tie the tree to the top of our suburban. He was such a big helper!

Time to decorate!!!

In comes Monroe from a long day of hunting!

Love getting our tree, and LOVED that Katie could join us (and kind-of Monroe). We REALLY really realllly missed Matt, Rach, Benton and Kathryn, but look forward to all being together soon!!!

Friday, November 25, 2011


Kings Creek Falls... with Sarah Louise. :) What a day!! Waterfall 1 of the season.

This is our personal favorite waterfall. We had the best time sitting there in awe (again- every time) of the beauty of our Creator. The reason I love this waterfall so much is the picture of Christ refining us. "Create in me a clean heart O God, and renew a right spirit in me." I love the fact that there are trees just rotting away alongside the base of the waterfall, and the water keeps flowing and flowing. God is constantly refining us- pouring His grace on us to wash us, grow us, shape us, get rid of things in our lives that need to go (the brush alongside the base of the waterfall...)... God is so faithful to us.

Kings Creek Falls-- it's beautiful!

Thursday, November 24, 2011


Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

Great day in Clemson with the extended family-- and Katie and Monroe! The day was complete with a nice little facetime session with Benton and Daniel. They were too cute-- I posted the video on facebook. Those little guys are something to be thankful for!
So glad to have Sydney in the family!!

Our family... EATS WELL!

Will's face is priceless in this picture.....

The young cousins-- but missing sweet Katie.

I wish I could say that my plate wasn't this full....

So glad Will was with us!!!
Thankful for my family!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


Today Sarah and I took Little Daniel on his very first hiking trip. We went to Stumphouse Tunnel to see the "t-rex" that lives at the back of the tunnel. (Daniel informed us of this fact-- it was all in HIS mind!) Later when Gigi asked if he saw the t-rex he told her that the t-rex was "sleeping on his pillow" but he saw him. I'm not sure when this cute story telling crosses the line into the world of lies. :/ Blurred lines will remain blurred-- for now it's cute!! :)
So many great adventures take place here :)

Here we are... heading into the tunnel. Daniel was so excited-- we even had our flashlight ready to go!
Looking for T-Rex at the back of the tunnel. This is the cage he lives in :)


He was stealing a kiss.... :)
I was not quite so successful stealing a kiss from him :)

"Show your muscles"

Wouldn't be a complete trip without a stop at the fish hatchery! So many
fun memories coming here as a little kid. Hope Daniel remembers these days! :)

Tonight our family celebrated Thanksgiving early with my Grandma Kline, Aunt Carol, Carrie and Dan, Steph and then a few friends from China. It was a deeelicious Pre-Thanksgiving meal-- always good meal around the Campbell kitchen. :)

We ate and then spent some time singing. Aunt Carol had the violin, so you know it's a good day. Thankful for the time we had together... God's blessed us so much, especially to have such great friends from half way across the world! :)
Auntie Boo Boo :), Grandma and Mom-- love this family!

Bringing up one of MANY casseroles 

So, we have had technical difficulties with the oven in our kitchen (thank you Sears),
so we had to use our oven in the basement. :) Made for an exciting
time! Carrie and Mom had too much fun getting this meal together!
You know when a pregnant woman has her hand in a meal it will be DELICIOUS!
Daniel was a HUGE help....

So glad Steph could come down for dinner!

Daniel is just too much! He provided our dinner music
And after dinner we all sat around and sang... Tingting did a great job adding to the sound. :)
What  a better way to thank Christ than singing songs about Him??!
Favorite times with the family right here...
Jesus, Thank you.