Variety Show

I've kind of fallen off the blog wagon because I've been buried in pearls and rhinestones and glue for the last couple weeks. 

This little Etsy shop has really taken off lately! We've had a pretty steady stream of orders coming in this whole month and it has definitely become me and my husband's new favorite hobby.

He's the business brains of the operation - I have given myself the official title of Artistic Director. 

But really, I am loving being able to spend some of my free time creating beautiful things for people to use on their special days. I love blingy, sparkly, pretty things and it's been fun for me to share that with others who feel the same way! 

In all of my other spare time, we've been hanging out with some pretty cool people!. We have definitely been in a process of building relationships with tons of new people for the last several months, because our church is constantly growing and we have really been trying to get connected.

And we also recently got to hang out with Emily and her husband, Mike, who are fun friends that we have known for awhile (we all got married within a month of each other!), but just never have hung out with very much. We had a great time and can't wait to get together again! 

I've also been reading alot lately, which I love because it is one of my all time favorite things to do. I'm so thankful to finally have time to read again! 

I've been reading the book Sun Stand Still, by a pastor in NC named Steven Furtick. Our church is doing a small group series based on this book, and even though our group has been smaller than usual this semester, we have already been so blessed and encouraged and stretched. God has definitely surprised us this year with how He has worked things out for reasons that we only can see in hindsight, and in building relationships in ways and with people we did not suspect. His ways are better!

I've also been reading the very-popular Hunger Games series. At first I thought these books sounded so lame, and I definitely couldn't figure out how there were three whole books based around the concept. But, then one afternoon at my in-laws' house, I saw the book and figured I would rather read than watch football. And then I think I was in a constant state of devouring that book for parts of the next 2 days - my job and responsibility to provide meals for me and my husband being pretty much the only thing preventing me from becoming totally consumed. 

I am reading the Kindle version of the 2nd book right now, but I am using my smartphone to do it, so it has been a little more slow going. Oh man is it intense, though. I'm sure I look like one of those super-nerds who can't get enough of their latest app, but really I'm just reading! 

As much as I get wrapped up in these books when I'm reading them, I can't say that I would recommend them as childrens' reading. In fact, I'm not really sure how I feel about them. Entertaining, definitely. The author, Suzanne Collins, is very talented at gripping a reader's attention. But - it is a creepy, uncomfortable, cruel, violent world she invites the reader into. 

I hate that books like this are so freely offered to kids who might not have the maturity to process these kinds of stories and images. I would hope that when I go see the movie that's coming out soon, it won't be full children under the age of 10, but I have a feeling it might be. Not that I think kids need to be sheltered from everything that's bad or cruel in the world, because that is reality. But, do kids necessarily need to be exposed to a depiction that's worse than reality? 

Hope you've enjoyed a little update on what's been going on with us lately! It's time for me to cuddle with my little black dog!