A birthday with Alpacas!

A birthday with Alpacas!

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Yesterday was my husbands 29th birthday! I surprised him with a trip to an Alpaca farm. His family had some a while back and he loved them! This plan was last minute so I was thrilled when I heard back from Sarah of Alpaca Dreams NC! (Link at bottom of blog.) She was so sweet. She even put up a “Happy Birthday” sign and made Raul a card from all the Alpacas! Raul and I had so much fun!

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The photo above is actually a Llama. I learned that they are used as guards, and they stomp to scare away predators, like dogs.

I also learned that even though Miaya’s hair in the photo below looks so soft, you don’t touch it. They don’t like it when you touch the top of their heads. Learned that lesson the hard way! :) But, we did get some hats from her hair, so thanks Miaya!

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Thanks again Sarah and Mike for making Raul’s birthday a memorable one!

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Hope the photos made you all smile! Links below.

Alpaca Dreams NC: Website Facebook

 

Iceland

ICELAND

A year ago today I married my husband, Raul.

And, if I am being honest, it’s been… normal.

We lived with my parents, and both worked Jobs that were less than desirable. Then, Raul got a better job, we argued, we laughed, we got an apartment, I went full time with photography, and we got a dog.

And, just like Iceland, its not all “insta-worthy.”

In Iceland we saw beautiful sites, stayed at an airbnb right in the heart of the city, couldn’t afford eating out so we cooked everyday, swam in a hot spring, walked for miles to see a crashed plane (underwhelming), walked on a black sand beach, got scammed by a car company, and had our breath taken away by the northern lights (overwhelming).

Unimaginable highs intermingled with unforgettable lows.

I will say that a lot of parts of Iceland and this last year were really hard, but I would not change who was with me through them all.

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Okay, so enough of that!

Please enjoy these photos… and bits of commentary in-between.

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Don’t worry, it’s the door on the right!

We learned quickly the food was stupid expensive. $18 for a bowl or soup. Soup! Luckily we were walking distance from a grocery store (:

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After shopping we explored the city.

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Coffee time! Not going to lie, we were totally acting like children with the sugar cubes! We might have taken a few. Raul is so tired. Also shameless ring photo.

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First venture out we didn’t go far. Stoped by this small town because it was getting dark. We now call it the town of Goodney because of a girl we met who worked at the ice-cream shop. We never actually looked up name of the town so we named it after her. (: There were some horses we wanted to pet and she let us know that was okay. We also learned people in Iceland don’t have guns. lol.

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Now that we were settled and a bit more comfortable it was off to see Iceland!

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We drove about 10mins away from this spot and it was like we were in a different place. It went from sunshine and 70 to rainy and 60.

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Back to the city for more coffee! This time with chocolate!

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Not too far from Reykjavik when we kept driving by what looked like a park so we decided to check it out. We found out that it was a fault line that created falls.

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More coffee!

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Last coffees in Iceland!

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LIGHTS!!!

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Well, that’s our trip. Hope you enjoyed the photos!

Sorry it took a year! <3

The Wasmunds swiped right.

 

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This was a hot wedding! 101 degrees to be exact, but I was so happy to be a part of it. A laid back wedding with people as the focus.

The day started off with coffee and pillows. Then a stroll through the woods where Paul and Kayli got their “first look” at each other. The ceremony began and Kayli was gleaming ear to ear. Yellow flowers throughout the background as vows were exchanged. A kiss… and then a dance.

This wedding was full of Love, Laughter and Fun!

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Principle Photographer: Desiree Henderson of Ezer Kenegdo Photography

Second Photographer: Katya Petrovna

A Super Gender Reveal

A SUPER Gender Reveal!

Its a bird! It’s a plane! It’s a GIRL!

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I could not be more excited when Kelly and Amanda shared this adorable idea. A soon as they told me I immediately pictured them on a roof in the city. Some place where a super hero might be spotted.

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Last year was awful.


The truth about last year.

I’m going to be honest with you guys… Last year was awful. In the beginning of last year, I moved to a new town to start graduate school. I thought it was going to be a great year because, in my experience, new town means new adventures! So, I was anticipating that I was going to make amazing friends, find an amazing church, and have a great old time for 2016.

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Man, was I wrong! I struggled from loneliness, to anxiety, to depression. To this day, I have only made superficial friends: meaning my classmates that I only see in class. And trust me, I tried to make friends. I got plugged in a church and in the small groups of said church. I tried to connect with my classmates and roommates. For some reason, there was never a connection made.

I also was struggling a lot with my singleness last year. Not sure if it’s because I was also struggling with loneliness or if it’s because I realized I am in my late 20’s, have been single for over 6 years, and realized I’m one of the last people out of all my friends to still be single. Whatever the reason, I struggled hard with being single last year.

I also was having trouble  balancing work and school, which made me experience anxiety for the first time. Eventually, I had a panic attack and realized that I needed to go to counseling.

So, I did.

In December, my counselor asked me something, “Where is Jesus in all of this?” I was so taken aback from that question. At first I got defensive but than I realized that He wasn’t really in my life. Even though I had moments where I prayed(more like complained), or read my bible(out of religious obligation). I never really let Jesus be with me. In other words, I never truly had a deep meaningful relationship with Him. I ignored him, got angry at him, or even pretended that he wasn’t in my life. But I was never really in the presence of Jesus.

I should have been. I should have been more with Jesus during all these struggles, but instead I relied on my own strength to get by each day, which made my situation even worse. I got more depressed and more anxious.

So, I decided that 2017 is going to be different. I know we all say that every year. But I didn’t want to change because it was a new year, I wanted to change because there is no way I am going to finish my last year in grad school, in this “new” town if I keep doing it the way I was doing it last year, by relying on my own strength.

Jesus even mentioned that if He is with us and we are with Him, we will grow. But apart from Him we would wither away like a branch which then is thrown in the fire.

““I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Fatherʼs glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.”

John 15:5-8

I’m not sure what you guys are going through. What I do know is that we can’t do anything in life without God. I mean, we can try, but it’s going to be really hard; mentally, physically, and spiritually. I would rather go through a hard time with God because of his amazing power and strength than by myself.

- Jennifer Harvey

She Encounters

 


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Is there a place where me and my mess are welcome? It’s not welcome at Target. It’s not welcome at a PTA meeting. It’s not welcome at Starbucks. It’s not welcome at work. Sometimes it even can feel like it’s not welcome at church.

She Encounters welcomes our mess with open arms. A safe place without judgment. The leaders are the first to tare down the facade of a picture perfect life. In a world of social media where we only see the happy, we need a place where women get real. That is exactly what God has used Alexandra Hoover (Founder) and Rachel Kang (Worship Leader) to create through She Encounters: The Gathering.

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I walked into the She Encounters’ Gathering not knowing what to expect. The first thing I saw when I walked through the door was a smile and a wave from Rachel, a complete stranger at the time. I already felt welcome. At the front of the warm dimly lit room was Alex. She was simple sitting down, pouring out her heart. She welcomed us into her mess, her struggle, her joy, and her hope she has through Christ. Nothing was hidden. She made it clear, we were all equal. We all had a mess and we all had grate value.

After words I got to talk with Alex and Rachel, who are both phenomenal at giving hugs! They shared a bit more about their vision for She Encounters. It’s not as structured as a small group, but it’s more intimate and interactive than an conference. They envision She Encounters: The Gatherings all over the country. They also seek to create an online environment where women can share their hearts, find women of all ages and backgrounds that seek to bring encouragement to each other.

I encourage you to check them out, get involved, and be encouraged. Let me end with an excerpt from their site.

Coming together, breaking barriers, and opening up for the Kingdom.
This is what we are all about.
Growing with God and growing in community takes vulnerability & humility.
That is why we gather. That is why we meet.
To walk hand-in-hand with each other, encouraging and equipping one another.
To break open the Word. We read His truth so that we can live His truth.
We are only vessels being used by the Father.
His-Story, through our lives.
So bring it all, sister friend.
We love you.
Because He first loved us.

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