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This is the last post on this site. If you subscribe to this, please go subscribe to www.seeingsunshine.com. That’s my new website! If you haven’t seen it, go now!! Seriously, why are you still reading?

Wondering where I’ve been? I promise I’m still alive, and still writing. I’ve just been writing on my new website. But, unfortunately, it is not ready to launch yet. Since I can’t send you to the new site just yet, let me give you an update on what’s been happening with it.

I couldn’t get the actual website up to where you can see it. I called the IT support people from my web host … and let me tell you, calling IT people is one of my least favorite things to do — right there with cleaning snow and ice off my car. I called them, and basically it was a big mess. Their IT people had messed up and installed something wrong. I thought I was going to have to re-do everything. But the nice lady was able to fix it. Thank you Jesus! That was blessing #1.

Then a sister in Christ, who is an avid blogger and just happens to be starting her own design company, found out I was creating my own website and wanted to help. She called me and walked me through steps I probably never would have figured out if it weren’t for her. She helped me set things up and answered my questions. And then she told me she would design my blog for me, if I wanted … If I wanted??!  Yes, I wanted! The moment she told me, through email, I literally began to cry. I didn’t understand why she would be so willing to help me. She didn’t owe me anything. BLESSING #2.

So currently, the new website is being designed by a professional designer. That’s right people, this thing is legit. As soon as it’s done, we’ll put the finishing touches on it and LAUNCH! So stay tuned!

Until then, feel free to “like” Seeing Sunshine on Facebook or follow SeeingSunshine1 on Twitter to stay posted on when Launch Day will be! I can’t wait!

I have a big announcement to makeImage.

Wrap up the breakables, pack up the boxes, get rid of the stuff I don’t need, load up the U-Haul … I’m moving.

Not in the way you may think though. I’m not literally packing up boxes and moving into a new home or apartment. But I am moving websites.

I’ve loved writing on this blog. It’s a way for me to express myself, to release my feelings in a tangible way and to encourage others through a skill God has given me. As much as I have loved it, this blog is kind of like a starter house. I’ve learned a lot through this blog, but it’s time for a more permanent home.

It’s time for my own website, with my own URL. For those of you who don’t know what the URL is, (ahem, my grandma) it’s that thing at the top that says “www.tlfry.wordpress.com” (Hi Grandma!). Now, I will have my own.

As I’m in the process of moving, I ask you for prayers. This creating a website business is way more difficult than I realized. If we stick with the “moving into a new home” analogy, I have painted walls and hung up wall art. However, there’s still behind the scenes work to be done in the basement and garage, work the guests won’t see but is crucial to making the house work. And that work isn’t any fun unfortunately, so I do appreciate prayer.

I believe God is going to use this new website. I’m praying that He helps me figure it all out so it can be launched soon. I’m praying that God will speak straight to my heart, through my fingertips to the computer keys and onto readers’ screens. I hope that God will use me and the website as vessels to encourage, inspire, uplift and speak straight to the readers who visit the site.

I can’t wait to finish moving and have a “house-warming party.” 🙂  Until then, your prayers are greatly appreciated.

  • To my future husband

Dear Beloved,

My heart has quite a few scars. I wish I could give it to you whole and new, but I can only offer what I have to give. I don’t have many firsts left, but I’ll offer you all of my lasts. And if you’ll be mine forever, I can promise you this …

If you pick me a flower, I’ll wear it in my hair. I’ll stash little notes for you where you least expect them. I’ll write you letters even when you aren’t away. I’ll eat ice cream with you. I’ll choose new outfits based on whether you’ll like them. I will be proud of you.

I’ll wait for you even if you’re late. I will feel safe and most at peace in your arms. I’ll let you be right when it doesn’t really matter. I’ll giggle when you act silly. I’ll dance with you in the living room. I will get dressed up for you. When I get frustrated, I’ll love how you’ll remind me how unimportant it is in the big picture and make me laugh about it.

I’ll hold your hand while you drive. I will love it when you place your hand on my knee when sitting next to each other. When we wash the car together on a hot summer day, I’ll spray you with water. I‘ll hide around corners and try to scare you. And I’ll run and scream when you try to tickle me. I’ll give you pep talks when you doubt yourself. And I can guarantee you there will be times when I need pep talks.

I will love hearing you sing in the car, and I will love even more singing with you in the car — loud and not at all on key. I’ll make you smiley face pancakes in the morning. I’ll sit on the porch and watch the lightning with you. I’ll fall asleep as you drive us home.

I’ll tease you for falling asleep during movies, but I’ll secretly think it’s adorable. I’ll always let you try my food and offer you what I can’t eat when I’m full.  I’ll make you laugh. And you’ll make me laugh. I’ll cuddle with you under a blanket on a cold day.

I will let you give me piggy-back rides as often as you want. I’ll take care of you when you’re sick. I’ll think you are absolutely gorgeous when you come home dirty from working outside or sweaty from working out.  My heart will skip a beat every time you walk through the door.

Our kisses will leave us both breathless. I’ll scream your name when seeing a spider and you’ll be my hero once you’ve killed it. I’ll pray with you before each meal and every night before we fall asleep.  I’ll give you space when you need it. I’ll love the way you explain things to me without making me feel dumb.

I’ll thank you every time you open a door for me. I’ll keep all our photos and cherish every one of them. I’ll travel with you to far off places and experience new adventures. I won’t ever let you leave for work in the morning without a kiss and an “I love you.” We can watch Sports Center or whatever you want on TV. Your friends are always welcome, and I’ll always be willing to make you guys snacks. I’ll watch scary movies with you, but only as long as you hold me close and let me close my eyes.

I’ll love laying my head on your chest and hearing your heartbeat.  I’ll understand if you get jealous – and do my best to show you that you have no reason to be. I’ll do my best to keep from getting jealous, as long as you show me I have no reason to be. You will always look handsome to me in the morning. When you’re sleeping, I’ll try to stay quiet. I’ll call when I say I will.

I’ll help you face your fears. I’ll always be faithful. I’ll try new things just for you. I’ll fall in love with your family, and love watching you with mine. I’ll always remind you of our inside jokes. I’ll give you nicknames you’ll never want your friends to know about. When walking down the aisle, I won’t notice anyone who’s there because my eyes will be fixated on yours. I’ll miss you when you’re gone.

I’ll forgive you for your mistakes. I’ll always give you a second chance. I’ll trust you. I’ll enjoy finding and trying new recipes that I know you will enjoy. I’ll adore the moments you kiss me on the forehead. I’ll take walks with you. I’ll read scripture with you. I’ll worry about you. I’ll pray for you.

I’ll have your children, and every time I look at them I will see you. I will spend a lifetime loving them with you. I won’t get enough of watching you hold our baby or playing on the floor with our toddler. I will love seeing you playing catch with our son outside. And I will love how protective you are of our daughter.

I will give you my heart. I will fall in love with you more each day. I will grow old with you. And when our time on Earth is through, I will love you in Heaven and spend eternity holding your hand.

Until then … I will wait for you.

Love Always,

Tiffany

One of the things I desire is a home of my own someday. A home where I can fall more and more in love with my husband. A home where I can raise children. A home that sits out in the country. A home full of love and joy and celebrations. I also have a list of material things I’d like this home to include. I’m going to share those with you in this blog.

1. A Dishwasher

I HATE washing dishes. If our house doesn’t have a dishwasher, my husband can’t expect me to cook or bake much. Unless he promises to always do the dishes- I guess that could work. I would have no problem doing them as long as I have a dishwasher. My plan is to unload the clean dishes in the morning, then throughout the day as dishes are used rinse them and put them in the dishwasher. Then at the end of the night, add soap and turn it on! Sounds easy to me!

2. A Window Seat

This looks Heavenly.

I LOVE reading, especially in a comfy spot with the sun shining in on me. A window seat is a perfect place to read, relax and spend time with God. I’ve always wanted one.

3. A Porch Swing 

Since the house will be out in the country, of course we’ll want to spend time outside on the porch during sunny days or stormy nights. A porch swing is also a great place to read. It’s also a great place for conversation, holding hands, watching kids play in the yard, waving to neighbors, drinking sweet tea or lemonade and slowing down to reflect on life. If a porch swing doesn’t work, rocking chairs are my back-up.

4. Closets

I love the organization of this closet!

I HATE clutter. I just can’t stand it. In fact, I have realized in the last year that I am a little bit OCD. I want things straight and organized or I can’t stand it. With big closets, I will have plenty of room to hide the things I want to keep but don’t want to display. Plus, a bigger closet means I can have more shoes and clothes! And what girl doesn’t want a walk-in closet?

5. Bar Stools

The whole kitchen is gorgeous!

I’ve always wanted a bar with bar stools in my kitchen — not for drinking, but for my kids. I want my kids to come home from school, plop up on the stools and tell me about their day as I start supper. I want to feed them snacks up there and help them with their homework. I want to visit with people while I cook or bake.

6. A Chest

I’ve always wanted a big, beautiful chest at the end of our bed. We’ll probably put a throw-blanket over it. Inside the box will be all the special things I want to keep — things like letters, scrapbooks, photos, baby books, etc. I want to keep things from our past in there for days when I’m feeling nostalgic. And someday, when my husband and I are in Heaven, our children and grandchildren will enjoy looking through the chest.

7. Finished Basement

Growing up, we didn’t have a basement so maybe that’s why I want one so bad for my own home someday. But I don’t want one of those dark, damp, scary basements. I want one that’s carpeted and well-lit. We can turn our basement into a kid’s playroom, home office, man cave for my husband, family game room, storage area or whatever we want. Maybe all of those at different times in our lives!

 

I doubt I’ll get all of these things in a home someday. But hey, a girl can dream can’t she!?

It was a normal day. I had decided to sleep in and very much enjoyed the luxury of it. I woke up and read my Bible, journaled and ate a breakfast of cereal. I picked out my clothes for the day and headed to the bathroom to shower. I did the normal routine — I turned on the exhaust fan in the shower, let my hair down, placed my towels in the right spot and turned on the water. I decided not to listen to music because I had some thinking to do. I undressed and stepped into the bathtub. I pulled the curtain closed and felt the water — really warm, hot even- just the way I like it. I pulled the lever up and water began pouring down on me just as it should. And then I noticed something dark down near my feet, something moving. And I looked down to see a very big, black spider struggling in the water. I don’t think I’ve ever jumped out of the shower so fast in my entire life. In fact, I almost fell flat on my face trying to get out of there. And then I ran, naked, out of the bathroom.

Let’s stop there a moment so you can understand my fear of spiders. Just typing the word gives me the creeps. I’ve always been afraid of them, but in the last year it has gotten worse. At the sight of them, I usually freeze in fear or go straight into a panic attack. I honestly can’t believe I survived this encounter without tears or death. But it was my shower and the spider seemed to be having trouble with all the water, I felt I had the upper hand. Especially since I have a giant bottle of poison in a storage room. That’s what I was running for. OK, and also to get away from the you-know-what.

Unfortunately, I keep the poison in a room that has a door that gets jammed and is really hard to open. I was literally ramming my body into the door until it opened and I spotted the beloved poison. I grabbed it and began to run back to the bathroom when I realized if the you-know-what got out of the shower or the poison didn’t work I needed shoes on! So I threw my tennis shoes on and dashed back to the bathroom. Before I began, I threw a towel around my body. If this spider is taking me down, he’s not taking me down naked. For some reason, I just really don’t want to die naked. I guess because whoever finds me will see me naked!

Anyways, I begin to pull the curtain back a little so I can see into the shower, but there’s no sign of it. I panic. It’s gotten out and now it is planning to attack me from behind! I whip around checking all around the floor, then the walls and ceiling. That’s one thing I hate about spiders — they could literally be anywhere. But there’s no sign of it. I start hitting the shower curtain, hoping for some sign of it. I never thought I would hope to see a spider!

Finally, I see it, still struggling in the water. It was hidden by the curtain. I push the curtain back more and have my poison locked and loaded. But it seems to be taking a beating from the water. In fact, it looks much smaller, as if it is dead, and it is spinning in circles toward the drain. It’s too big to go down the drain though, which is good because if he wasn’t dead, which he wasn’t, then he could have crawled right back out. UGH. The thought of that makes me want to move out.

So I somehow am able to make myself turn the water off. I push the level down and the water all begins spraying out of the faucet. Then I realize the thing is not dead. And I turn both handles so there is no more water. The spider is back to its giant self immediately! And I am spraying that poison like there is no tomorrow. I spray and spray and reload and spray and spray and reload. I think I reloaded the poison probably six times. And a lot of poison comes out with one load!

Eventually it stopped moving and began getting smaller and smaller like they do when they die. But I wasn’t letting it fool me. I just kept spraying! Then it laid there in this crumpled up, disgusting thing. And I knew I had to step on it just to be sure. It took me a couple minutes to work up the courage to step on it. I did though. And the battle was over. Well, almost. Then I had to get its remains out of my bathtub. I chose large paper towels to do the job. And then again, it took a bit to work up the courage to do it. Even though I knew it was dead, I still didn’t want to get anywhere near it! But I did and I flushed it. And now my bathroom smells strongly of poison … and I don’t think I’ll ever be able to shower again.

What if I can’t provide for my family? What if I end up hating my career? What if I can’t pay back all the debt I owe? What if I am an awful parent? What if I never find my future husband/wife? What if my life is cut short?

Worry. Worry. Worry. How much time do we spent worrying about our futures? How often do we play the “What If” game, asking ourselves questions we can never know the answers to?

God tells us not to worry. He tells us not to worry about tomorrow, not to worry about our futures. He tells us He will take care of us. He tells us this in Matthew 6.

  25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?

   28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Instead of worrying about what our future holds, which I am guilty of doing about 75 percent of the time, we need to be like a child. What I mean is that children only worry about what the very next thing is. They don’t worry about the extended future. They don’t worry about the next day. They can hardly think about what’s going to happen in a few hours. They are completely focused on the present. Because they trust their mommy or daddy to take care of them. We should trust our Daddy in Heaven so much so that we are completely focused on the present.

And he said: “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.Matthew 18:3

Look at everything God has given you now. Look at everything He has carried you through in the past. How can you not trust Him with your future? It’s silly to question your future with “what if’s.” You cannot predict the future; you can only trust God to take care of you and give you the best. If you take away the fear of change, take away the fear of the unknown and uncertainties, you can finally enjoy the present. You can find peace and joy. You can spend your days loving instead of worrying.

What are you waiting for? Let go of the future. Focus on the present your Daddy has given you. Enjoy it and embrace it. And let Him take care of the rest.

If she silently waited with her hand open and heart racing for your fingers to intertwine with her own,
and let you follow her to her hometown to see where she grew up, to see all she’d ever known,
If she wrote her heart with paper and pen, using a stamp to communicate while you were away,
If she tried new tastes and no matter what for, always let you pay,
If she burst into tears the moment your arms wrapped around hers after weeks of waiting,
and held on tight when she felt you fading,
If she stood against the wall, nervous and anxious, looking into your eyes before you touched your lips to hers,
If she endured hours of sickness to learn and experience your love of lures,
If she sat by the river next to you, listening and sharing,
and drank more water cause you were only caring,
If she climbed a tree with you and named the geese,
and loved her meal but let you try a piece,
If she stood under the stars with you, watching the lights float above,
and stood by the fireflies and told you of her love,
If she introduced you to those closest to her — her family and friends,
If she let you braid her hair, all the way to the ends,
If she jumped on a plane without any planning,
and, knowing you didn’t like it, decided never to go tanning,
If she spent months collecting photos and memories in a book,
and could tell you what she was thinking with only one look,
If she giggled and laughed and smiled a lot,
but burst into tears when cooking in a pot,
If she went to the game and became a fan,
and thought you looked best after a Florida tan,
If she went to the zoo and heard the lion roar,
and missed you all the way to her core,
If she cried every night thinking of the end,
and asked God to take her heart and mend,
then you can be sure one thing is true,
that girl right there, she truly loves you.

Two is better than one, for they can help each other succeed. -Ecclesiastes 4:9 NLT

I picked up my friend Abby on the west side of Indianapolis. We were excited to see some of our friends, but first we had to get to the east side of Indianapolis. I’m being completely serious when I tell you that we were lost for over 2 hours. I think we drove back and forth from one side of Indy to the other at least 4 times. It was a disaster. I was incredibly frustrated.

I needed a GPS.

I was driving home from work late at night, and it was pouring down rain. As I came over a hill on the highway, flashing lights met me. A man motioned for me to turn onto a county road. It was my only option. I had never been on the county road before, and I had no idea where I was going or how to get home. As the large raindrops smashed onto my windshield, inside the car teardrops began running down my face. I was scared and alone.

I needed a GPS.

I was supposed to be at an interview in 10 minutes. The directions I had printed out told me to take Lake Drive. I drove and drove, but Lake Drive doesn’t exist. I turned down every other road possible searching for the right building or a sign that I was at least in the right area. I was supposed to be at my interview by now, and I still had no clue where the place was. I was confused and frazzled.

I needed a GPS.

In all of these instances, if I had only had a GPS system I could have found my way easily without the frustration, fear or confusion. As I laid in bed the other night, I pondered all of this. I realized not only do I want a GPS system for my car, I would really like one for my life.

You see, I’m at this point in my life where I don’t know where to go. It feels like there are about five different roads in front of me, and I have no idea which I’m supposed to take. I just know I don’t really like traveling on the road I’m on now. But which way do I turn? It would be so much easier if God would just give me a GPS to say “Turn right in 2 miles.”

Another thing I love about GPS systems is that they show you your Estimated Time of Arrival (ETA).  I love knowing when I’m going to get somewhere so that I’m not late. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if our life GPS also showed our ETA? It would make the “construction periods” a lot easier, because we’d know exactly when we would get the “new pavement.” We could count down, making the hard times easier. There wouldn’t be any fear of a never-ending hardship. We would know, without a doubt, the trial will eventually end.

But that is not reality. We can’t have a life GPS. And we can’t know our ETA. God doesn’t promise to reveal our futures to us. He doesn’t promise to show us what our paths will look like. We won’t always be certain about which direction to turn or what will be around the next corner. But God promises to be a lamp for us as we walk the path of life. Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path. Psalm 119:105

Here’s the thing though, have you ever actually walked in the dark with a lamp? It’s nothing like a flashlight. You can only see enough light to take a step forward, but the lamp does not show you what’s ahead after that. It doesn’t show you the entire path or when the next fork in the road will be. There’s only enough light to take one step at a time. We have to trust God. We have to have faith that He is leading us in the right direction and that He won’t let us fall into a pit.

I don’t need a GPS.

I only need the God who loves me enough to show me the way, even if it’s just one step forward at a time.

In this season of my life, everything feels uncertain and overwhelming. Before all this brokenness, I thought I knew my purpose in life. But now, I’m not sure of anything. What I thought was my purpose seems incredibly far away, and maybe even nonexistent.

Last year, my word for 2011 was “secure.” I have decided my word for 2012 is going to be “purpose.” This isn’t a New Year’s resolution. It’s just my focus for the year. At first, I thought of it as trying to find my purpose. Where does God want me? What does He want me to do with my life? What is my purpose? I was going to figure out the answers to all these questions. Ha! Good one, right?

The more I thought about it, I realized no one probably has one specific purpose for their entire life. God has multiple purposes for each person, depending on where they are at in their journey through life. So instead of trying to find my one specific purpose, I’d like to spend 2012 trying to put purpose into everything I do. Whether I am writing a story for the newspaper, baking cookies, reading a book, teaching a class or visiting with friends — each area of my life should have purpose. Instead of searching for purpose, I want to put purpose into everything I do. I want everything I do — whether big and important or small and silly — to be for God’s glory, to somehow further His kingdom, to bring me closer in my walk with Him. And shouldn’t that be everyone’s specific purpose?

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