Elbow Room.



This morning I listened to a sermon from Elevation Church's "Surround" series. It really encouraged me and I wanted to share it with y'all.

This particular sermon was preached by one of my favorites, the amazing Christine Caine, author, speaker, and founder of the A21 Campaign. I regularly follow her on social media and listen to her podcasts on my walks. I also just subscribed to the free magazine by the new Propel Women- whose mission is to enable women to be ambassadors for Christ in the workplace and in the world.

Needless to say, Christine is amazing and I loved what she had to say this morning for all of us.


My favorite take away was this (paraphrased):

"With God, we are capable. But, are we willing? Are we willing to go further? To go all in? I'd rather have a life that is a daring adventure than settle for some dead, boring, old, complacent comfortable religion. I would rather have a dynamic relationship with Jesus Christ that takes me to places I never knew..."

Dang girl! Yes and yes. Amening at my laptop screen. 

Ephesians 3:20 says- Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! --do I believe this? do I trust this? Am I getting in the way of this which I often pray for?

Friends, please be encouraged as you step in to your Monday! He is doing more than you think, and you are more capable than you think. Let's stop putting Christ in a box, let's look at others the way He sees them, let's love more than we ever have, let's quit focusing only on what we see and trust in the bigger picture...let's stop letting fear cripple us and let's open our eyes to the adventure of following Jesus where he leads. I am right there with ya. It's going to be so good. 

love ya mean it-

Thanksgiving Delights.


Happy Thanksgiving Week!

I'm so excited for my parents to get in town tomorrow! I wanted to share some last-minute (and easyyyy) recipes and ideas for y'all if you're still in need of some inspiration. {links are highlighted}


{200+ pinterest pins can't lead you wrong ;)}


{sub a blend of olive/canola oil for walnut oil}

{psst. cook the sweet potatoes in the slow cooker to make it even easier}


{sub red wine for white, use apples, pears, and fresh cranberries}



{with blue bell vanilla ice cream ;)}

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Also, please check my friend Ashley's blog on Dressing Your Holiday Table and Setting Up a Buffet {how we do things at our house}

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I hope every one of you has a wonderful Thanksgiving with those you love! I'm grateful for you for reading  this space. :)

"You crown the year with your goodness
your ways overflow with plenty"
Psalm 65:11

Two Things.

Happy Sunday!


Two things, real quick:

I'm currently reading through the "Open Your Bible" plan. Incredible!
Check it out, girlfriends, you will walk away encouraged and refreshed.

2. "Alive"
I know that you're alive
You call me one of your own
in my heart you've made your home
I know that you're alive
I'm coming alive..


*Pairs quite nicely with the reading plan. Or just with life in general. ;)

Take joy, take heart, be filled with hope!!

xoxo
L

Slow Cooker Minestrone with Basil Oil.


Hey everyone!

It's Tuesday, which means tonight is small group night! A group of my girlfriends and I will be getting together at my house for a meal and Bible study. I like to provide a meal, and normally cook something simple, easy...but that also tastes good!

I found a minestrone recipe in an older Southern Living magazine, and tweaked it a little bit with what I had on hand. I also cooked it in the slow cooker all day instead of boiling and then simmering for an hour. We all really loved this and it made a LOT! Andrew and I had leftovers the next day, and he gave it a thumbs up, despite it being a vegetarian dish. ;) So, I wanted to share it with you! This makes (at least) 8 servings.

Ingredients

4 cups of water
1 regular sized jar of spaghetti sauce of your choice
1 medium onion, diced
1 pound of carrots, peeled and diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced (I use the squeezy kind, it's easier)
8oz (half box) of macaroni or short pasta of your choice, cooked per instructions (I used wheat)
2 cans of sliced white potatoes (or chunks), drained
2 cup of fresh kale (or spinach), chopped
1 tbsp cooking oil of your choice
Basil Garlic Oil** (optional)

Directions

In a skillet, heat your oil on medium-high, then add diced onion and carrots
Stir onions and carrots for about 5 minutes, then add minced garlic, stirring for a minute or so
(I do this first step to prevent too-crunchy carrots/onions. You could leave out if you want)
Add all ingredients except for your kale in the slow cooker
At this point, you MAY have to add a little more water, your choice
Let the soup cook on low all day, 6-8 hours
Before serving, add the chopped kale (or spinach) to the soup and let cook for another 30 minutes
Ladle the soup in to bowls and drizzle with basil oil
Serve with crusty bread

**For the Basil Oil
Add a handful of fresh basil, 2 tbsp of olive oil, and 2 garlic cloves in your food processor
Blend until ingredients have combined and add on top of soup bowls
This is optional, but really makes the soup flavors "pop"!

I hope you enjoy this meal, friends! We sure did. 

Click here if you would like a printable recipe. As always, feel free to "pin it" as well!

Glimpses.

Happy Thursday, sweet things.

The other day I was reading a post on a good friend's blog, and I love how she just wrote whatever she wanted to write in no order whatsoever. I'm thinking I will give it a try.

So, a hard lesson learned last year, the leaves do not really change color here in the Fall.
Hellooooo, why didn't someone prepare this white girl in advance that the leaves just fall off and die? ;)  Even still, my neighborhood walks are always beautiful.


The walks are especially lovely during the crisp, morning hours.
And then I go to work and make a pumpkin coffee and pretend there are orange leaves outside my window and all is well with the world.


We have been given some fall weather though, and A was just itchin' to have a fireside date.
I so love his wild and fun spirit. A fire on a Wednesday night? Why not?


 Speaking of wild and fun, I attempted to look the part for a Halloween-themed  Bunco night.
I spent $1 at Dirt Cheap on an oversized tank and neon raybans to be a "modern sorority girl" (this is the scene nowadays).

I really wish the extra-large look was popular during my sorority days. Well, maybe not extra-large, but the freedom to at least divert to a size other than small would have been nice.. ;) laugh.

I also must confess that I attempted my first mirror selfie as part of the whole character. Confirmed: they are hard. Props to you young gals that blow up my news feed with these. Work those quads.

Friday night we went as Walker Texas Ranger and a cat burglar to another party. Another $2 well spent at the ole DC. I am still laughing/impressed with A's eyeshadow beard. Wild and fun, that one. I also feel the need to mention everyone left the party by 10pm. Friday nights are hard.


There have been even more flannel appearances around here since my last post.
I have to admit, I  the girls in our house really like it.


We got to enjoy another fire with friends the other night. 
With more flannel. And venison chilly. And scarves.
 I loved our time together.

Last night before small group, I dropped by my friend's soccer game.
Can I just say that little humans in those uniforms and little cleats is one of the cutest things on the planet? I'm pretty upset with myself for not being a witness to such a thing until now.


And lastly, I used to laugh at my parents for going in to the living room at night to watch TV only to fall asleep on the couch about eight minutes later. Ahem.


Life is so sweet, dreary-time-change-sans-orange-leaves and all, and I'm so grateful. These are the little glimpses I will want to look back on and cherish. In this place, with these people, in this season.

We are headed to not one, but TWO weddings this weekend, and I'm looking forward to hitting the road and reuniting with family and friends. Despite the dozens of weddings that have been packed in to the recent years, I still get giddy before each and every one. We're honored to stand beside our friends as they marry their loves...and the fun receptions with friends from hours away make the deal even better. ;)