Sunday, June 28, 2015

Currently...


I have been saying that I am going to start writing a “Currently” post for months now and never got around to it.  I actually wrote one in my journal about 3 months ago and never put it into my blog.  Looking over it now, some things are still currently happening and some have changed.  I was reading the post by Echo aka TheMad Mommy, and it set me into the mood to go ahead and write one.  So here it goes.


Currently...

Feeling:  Mixed emotions.  Saddened by all that has happened in Charleston recently.  Mourning the loss of a sister-in-Christ (Reverend DePayne Middleton Doctor); one of the Emanuel 9.  Her voice was like that of an angel.  May you continue to sing in heaven.  Also, feeling hopeful. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.   I truly believe that Charleston is setting an example for the nation.











Reading:  Sad to say, I don't do much reading.  In fact, I haven't done any personal reading in awhile.  I have read articles and postings for educational purposes (school counselor remember), and my daily share of blogs.  I need to get back to reading.  I used to enjoy it.

Watching:  Nothing in particular. Waiting for all of my favs to come back on.  Oh, I am watching The Bachelorette...don't ask. Some of my favs are as follows:  American Crime, The Blacklist, Secrets and Lies, The TGIT line up with Grey's Anatomy, Scandal, and How To Get Away With Murder.  Oh, but I do have a date every Wednesday evening with Shemar Moore of Criminal Minds.  : )

Image from his official Twitter page.

Drinking:  Coffee.  My body seems to rule my head and thinks it is still supposed to wake up around 6 am every morning.  Come on now, it's been over three weeks since I've been on summer vacation and it still isn't cooperating with me.  I can say, it's been nice to take an afternoon nap.  

Eating:  Healthier.  I'm eating more fruits and veggies which really has never been a problem for me.  The end of the school year can be so busy that I don't plan out my meals as I should or go to Chick- fil-A or some other restaurant instead of cooking a complete meal for myself.  Summer is the time for me to cook more and try new recipes.  I've purchased a few meals through Hello Fresh and I am loving the recipes I'm starting to whip up in my kitchen.  I feel like a lil chef cutting up the ingredients and creating such awesome meals that I normally wouldn't create.  It is a subscription service, but you are not obligated to order each week.  If you would like to give it a try and receive $40 off your first box, type in the following and you are on your way... http://www.hellofresh.com/?c=PZPPKJ .  You will see a statement in green stating that your coupon has been successfully added.  From there you set up an account and voila, you are on your way to becoming a chef in your own kitchen as well. Trust me you won't regret it.  If you don't think this is right for you, you can cancel after the first box.  So go give it a try!










Developing:  More confidence as a blogger.  I still doubt my writing at times and would love more feedback to ensure I'm doing things right.  But, is there really a right or wrong way to blogging?  Slowly allowing those who really know me into my new adventure/hobby.


Check out my "Linking Up" page to see the various sites I'll be sharing this post.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Christmas in July


Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells Rock....(turntable scratching noise)...

Wait a minute...It's Summer...so why am I singing that jingle?  Well, it's Christmas in July and the Bohemian Blogesses of Facebook are hosting a Secret Santa Gift Swap.






This swap is open to anyone who wishes to participate, as long as you have a social media account.  What's different about this swap is that you will be gifting someone with treats that are native to where you live.  Something unique to the area you are from.  Does this sound fun to you? I mean, who wouldn't love receiving some happiness in the mail?  I know I would!!  This is also a GREAT way to meet new people and make a new friend.  So come along and join the Bohemian Blogesses as they extend Christmas to July.  Sign up is going on now until July 10th- SO HURRY and click that link above!

 Ho ho ho...Merry...well you know what I mean.  :)

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

This Is My Fight Song

When I saw this week’s That’s What She Said prompt, What is your fight song?, the first thing that came to mind was, I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor…

Go on now, go…walk out the door.  Just turn around now, ‘cause you’re not welcomed anymore.
Oh no, not I!  I will survive!  Oh as long as I know how to love, I know I’ll stay alive.

Many people know this song as a heart-break survival song, but this song is a survival of anything song.  At least that’s how I think of the main chorus.

Many songs began to ramble through my mind as I began to seriously think about it.  When I’m emotional drained due to stress, I always fall back onto gospel.  With everything that is going on in the nation and especially here in the lowcountry (Charleston) at this time, it helps to turn to the Lord.  Many songs have helped me to win that fight.

Let it Rain…  “Open the floodgates of Heaven.  Let it rain."
“It’s raining”…
This is God pouring down all of his beautiful blessings upon you.  This is also you releasing all of the pain inside and just letting go and letting God.
“I feel the rain”… (The healing is starting to begin)





Another is My God is Awesome
“My God is awesome
He can move mountains,
 Keep me in the valley,
 Hide me from the rain. 
 (In this instance the rain symbolizes pain.)

My God is awesome,
Heals me when I’m broken,
 Strength where I’ve been weaken,
 Forever he will reign. “





And finally, Every Praise
Every praise is to my God
Every word of worship with one accord
Every praise, every praise is to our God

Sing hallelujah to our God
Glory hallelujah is due our God
Every praise, every praise is to our God

God my Savior, God my Healer, God my Deliverer…Yes He Is…Yes He Is!!!




I can look back over my life and see where God has brought me from.  These are my fight songs.  If you don’t have any of your own, I hope that mine can provide you with some comfort with anything that you are struggling with at this time. There are many others I could have included, but didn’t want to take over the entire blog.  Some others I would like to just mention are as follows:

I Give Myself Away and Here I Am to Worship.



Do you have any fight songs to share?

Sunday, June 21, 2015

#SunshineBoxSwap Reveal

Well hello Summer. How are you?  I can tell you're going to be a hot one with this triple digit heat.  Today is the first day of summer and it is also Father's Day.  I would like to send special wishes to all fathers and fathers-to-be, especially to my dad.  
Love this man to pieces!
In an earlier post, I mentioned that I was participating in the #sunshineboxswap hosted by Dean and Abby.  You can go back and catch up here.  I was anxiously waiting for the arrival of my box of happiness and low and behold it arrived much sooner than I thought.

Guess what I got in the mail today?!?!


I was backing out of my yard to mail off my package and noticed the nice, little, white truck stopping at my mailbox.  As I glanced through my rear view mirror, I saw the mail lady place a large sized box in the mailbox.  Inside I was like, "Yes, my box has arrived!"  I wanted to get it right away, but I had some errands to take care of first.  So mail will have to wait.

After running my errands, I anxiously retrieved my package from the mail and immediately opened it.  Actually forgot to take a picture of the unopened box, but I'm sure you're more interested in whats inside...as least I was.


My swapping partner was Nae Staggs of ichoosethesun.com and when I found out we were paired together I instantly knew why.  Our blog names are an obvious giveaway.  After reading her blog, I found that we have a lot in common.  Now, there is no way I would compare our blogs because Mrs. Nae is truly an awesome blogger/influencer.  I love how she greets everyone as her lovely sunflowers.  Such a cute and thoughtful way of saying hello each week. We both are music lovers and although I call myself quirky, I can connect with her urban flower-child.  Could this be my long lost sister?  Take a look at those beautiful smiles!

(Shared from her site)


























Well back to the swap...I can't wait to share what Nae sent me!






 Some familiar items...






And some new ones to try...



                                                                                                                                          ...YUM!!!



Thanks Nae for sharing your rays of sunshine with me.  I am liking everything you sent and I hope that my box brightened your day as well!  Your Lovely Sunflower appreciates it! 


Thursday, June 18, 2015

International Picnic Day


Picture courtesy of my camera photo from a Target bag cover :)


So today is International Picnic Day.  I’m going to be honest with you.  I’d never heard of it until I saw the writing prompt for today’s post sponsored by the SITSgirls Stop the Summer Slump Challenge.  Of course, I had to Google it to learn more about it.  When I did, I was surprised to see that it was listed as one of The World’s Special Days.  It’s not that it’s any different from a regular picnic.  It’s a day set aside for everyone in the whole world to just relax in fellowship. 

Well that doesn’t seem too hard.  Only problem is, it feels like South Carolina has moved closer to the equator this week with our heat indices in the triple digits.  I am doing all I can to stay cool by not going outside this week.  So no outdoor picnics for me.  Maybe I can plan an indoor one.  Do I have enough time to get friends over?  Although its summer, many of my friends are still working.  I am also working a few hours a week, so I may not be able to pull this off.   

So what would I serve for my indoor picnic?  I definitely want to keep it basic.  I could make some turkey sandwiches cut into 4 bite sized pieces.  Maybe some crackers or pita chips with cheese or hummus.  That’s always a hit.  Oh, my pepperoni skewers.  So easy to make.  Just slide pepperoni and chunks of cheese onto a toothpick.  Maybe a bowl of olives and I would definitely need some nuts as a filler food.  And to wash it all down, a few bottles of red and white wine.  That should do the trick. 


Now, who am I kidding?  I will not be able to pull this off tonight.  It’s not about getting the food prepared, but everyone…including myself, has too much going on at this time to get together.  Well, I would have to say that international picnic day will have to be celebrated another year.  Next year, it is on a Saturday; June 18th to be exact.  Since I am now aware of it, I can definitely be more prepared for it.  Who knows?  Maybe PopUp Charleston will be held on that day next year.  J

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Summer Bucket List

What's on my bucket list for this summer?  Well,let's see...




Take a weekend getaway~~Try a new restaurant~~Start an herb garden~~Begin my weight loss journey~~Go to an amusement park~~Go to a concert~~Make my own popsicles~~Go bike riding~~Picnic in the park~~Watch fireworks~~Take a dip in the ocean~~Go for an evening walk through the neighborhood~~Read a book~~Try a new summery nail color~~I still haven't started yoga, so...





What’s on your bucket list for this summer?  I would love to hear.

Summertime Favorites

When I think of summer, so many things come to mind:

Beaches


Harbor Cruises
Exploring historical sites




Hanging out at the local farmers market



Touring local breweries and/or wineries

Wine tastings



Painting parties

Festivals in the park


Baseball and soccer games
Good food


Good times with friends
CRABS!!!


Weddings...isn't that the norm for summer?  :)


Relaxing, playing, and being a kid at heart




And me just being me!  



Need I go on?
If you live in a place like Charleston, there's an endless amount of fun!

Monday, June 15, 2015

#SunshineBoxSwap




The idea of a secret exchange has always been appealing to me. Giving and receiving gifts... Who wouldn't love that! The minute I read that Mrs. AOK and Abby were hosting this sunshine box swap, I immediately jumped on it. I participate yearly with our secret pal exchange at work, so I know how well this works.

 Before I even received an email explaining who I would be shopping for...or who's day I would be brightening, I began searching Pinterest for various ideas that could be used in the swap. I took those ideas along with a few of my own and began shopping.  Since it's called the #sunshineboxswap I decided to look for everything yellow. That wasn't hard to find. In fact, on my first outing, I came across this fabulous bundle of yellow that was just beaming with happiness.  




Now if only I could scoop this baby up and send it...lol...  Anyway...

As I'm shopping, I'm thinking I've got to make sure it's something that the person would like. I came across various items that I know I would like, and then it hits me...I don't even know who I'm shopping for. So for the remainder of the gifts, I'll just have to wait. 

I began checking my email to see if the person had been revealed... Nothing received...Ughhh...Feelings of distress! Oh well, I just gotta put this baby to the back burner for now.

The waiting game begins...tick-tock tick-tock...come on people where's my email!!! (Just kidding) lol!!!


(Days later) ...What's this?  Could it be....? YES!!! It's the email I've been waiting for...the email revealing the name of my gift recipient.  I began perusing her blog to find more details.  Hummhh, I see she likes this and that and that and this.  Wow, she has a really cool blog as well!  Check out this post on the 100 Good Deeds Bracelet and the story behind it. 

  Now I can get back to shopping.  Can you tell I'm having fun with this? 😃 I now know what to purchase to complete my box.  And here it is...uh uh uh...you'll have to find out what she got after she receives it.  So sorry.  Come back next week to find out more, but until then... Hello Sunshine   = )    Doesn't that just brighten your day?  = )

Have you ever participated in a gift exchange?  




Friday, June 12, 2015

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Everyday Adventures: Snapshots





Cheers! Celebrated with the future Mrs. Pedelty at a bridal shower in her honor.  This was also our last day of work so we were like....Bring On Summer!!!   











The end of the school year also means new beginnings.  New positions and new homes.   I only had the pleasure of working with this young lady beside me for a year, but I know we will have a lasting friendship.  She is venturing to Germany for her husband's reassignment.



     




We were blessed with 
the presence of the Imani Youth Choir from Uganda at church Sunday. Their voices were like those of angels.  












Me and Ramona.  What can I say?  We were enjoying our last week of work at another friend's gathering.  We always have a good time together.










I was on the search for all things yellow to gather things for the #sunshineboxswap    that I am participating in. The first thing I spotted as I exited my car, was this bright and sunny car that just beams with happiness.  I had to snap a picture.  Take a look at the seats.  :)









I'm always fascinated by the weather.  Although, it was starting to get nasty outside, you have to admit this is a beautiful picture.  20 seconds after this shot came a downpour.  Time to focus and get home.





Do you have any snapshots to share?  I would love to see them.  These are just a few snapshots of my life.  Be sure to follow  @sunshine.and.elephants on Instagram to catch them all!

Wordless Wednesday: Charleston Farmers Market

Earlier this year, I mentioned how I would like to check out our local farmers market.  Not long after, I was able to strike this off  my bucket list.  If you've never been to a farmers market, then you are truly missing out.   I took pleasure in exploring all that the Charleston Farmers Market had to offer.  Located downtown at Marion Square right in the heart of the city, the farmers market offers a family friendly experience of food, crafts, entertainment, and fun. One thing you will notice about the lowcountry is that they take pride in supporting local businesses.  Click the link to learn more about Lowcountry Local First.  Follow my journey through pictures; I hope you enjoy your visit! :)

















(I enjoyed it so much, I forgot to take more pictures.)






(These were very tasty)




(Cool and refreshing)


(Street dancers)





(Come back and see me soon!)


This post has been shared at Thank Goodness It’s Monday at Nourishing Joy, the Mommy Monday Blog Hop, and Turn It Up Tuesday,  #bestoftheblogosphere, and Making Memories Mondays

Does your city have a farmers market?
  How does it compare to ours?