Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Simple Close ... For now anyway

Dear friends,
     I had all these great plans. I was going to grow this little blog and have it stay around for a few years.
     But lately I have been feeling God's call to live out my faith more than write about it. It's time to focus on other writing. It's time to enjoy life and not just write about it. It's time to practice things without the distraction of having to write about them.
     So for now, I'm not going to be writing on this blog. I might pick it up again sometime, but at least for now I'll be living out my simple life instead of blogging about it.
    So farewell for now and I pray that your life is enriched and strengthen by God, Rose

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

In 100 Simple Words #8

The years past. Funny how things that seem so important to us at one time, become less important.
Kelsey smiled as she thought about that “restoration coffee” as she and Jenny had dubbed it. They had mended the friendship.
Although she never touched that story again, Kelsey had written other things. Her life was now full.
She looked out the window of her small apartment. The guests should be arriving soon. Today they were celebrating the completion of a play.

Kelsey smiled to herself. It had been a wonderful success. God had been with her, but then He always had. 

Saturday, June 22, 2013

In 100 Simple Words #7

“Can you ever forgive me, Kelsey?”
The words fell on Kelsey’s heart like cool water.
“I should have defended you. Especially after what Megan did. I was so confused and I let that confusion hurt you. Seeing you at the party last night made realize that my silence was hurting you. I’m so sorry.”
Kelsey took in a deep breath. It was as if God was whispering, “I am here. I am with you. I have not abandoned you.”
The proof of this sat right in front of her, drinking a vanilla cappuccino.

Tears fell, and she nodded her head. 

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

In 100 Simple Words #6

This is nuts!
Kelsey drummed her fingers on the table waiting for Jenny to show up.
It’s only 3:30 and I’m waiting here at the coffee shop for a “friend” who didn’t stick up for me. What could she possibly want to say to me?
But Jenny had sounded so sincere that Kelsey couldn’t refuse. Even at 3:30 in the morning.
The timid voice startled Kelsey. She jerked up and saw the familiar face standing before her.
A brief silence ensued.
“I bet you didn’t want to see me again.”

Kelsey just stood there. What should she say? 

Sunday, June 16, 2013

In 100 Simple Words #5

Kelsey turned over on the bed. Another hour had past. No sleep had come to her weary body.
God, if you are with me no matter what, why do I feel so alone? I worked so hard on that story, only to have it stolen by a friend. Where were you when I was wronged?
As if on cue, the phone rang.
Kelsey glanced at the clock. 3:04.
Who could that be? I knew I should have turned it off before I went to bed.
Kelsey picked up the phone, “Kelsey here.”

“It’s Jenny. I need to talk to you.”

Thursday, June 13, 2013

In 100 Simple Words #4

They had been having a meeting. Megan, Kelsey, and Jenny. They had wanted to take the story she was working on and turn it into a movie.
Then Megan exploded, got greedy, and stole the story. Kelsey gritted her teeth, remembering the day. Megan had claimed that she wrote the story and was on her way to a producer.
The tears came. Kelsey wiped them away.
Today was my birthday. My friends had thrown me a party. Yet I feel so empty and alone.
The silence around her seemed to only created an echo for her despair.

Where is God?

Monday, June 10, 2013

In 100 Simple Words #4

They had been having a meeting. Megan, Kelsey, and Jenny. They had wanted to take the story she was working on and turn it into a movie.
Then Megan exploded, got greedy, and stole the story. Kelsey gritted her teeth, remembering the day. Megan had claimed that she wrote the story and was on her way to a producer.
The tears came. Kelsey wiped them away.
Today was my birthday. My friends had thrown me a party. Yet I feel so empty and alone.
The silence around her seemed to only created an echo for her despair.

Where is God?

In 100 Simple Words #3

Way back in October, I wrote a short story about a girl named Kelsey. Well, I have been wanting to continue her story. Today I finally did. Here is the next part.

Kelsey walked into her small apartment and dropped down unto the couch. The evening had been exhausting. Seeing Megan again had brought it all back. The back-stabbing, the lies, the disappointed hopes. It had been one of the darkest times in Kelsey’s life.
Megan and Kelsey had been good friends, she thought. But then …
Kelsey’s eyes wondered to the laptop. The story that was left unfinished. Once you couldn’t tear her away from the story, now it was too painful.

Thoughts about the painful event floated through her mind. She tried to shove them away, but to no avail. 

Friday, May 31, 2013

Simple Book Reviews Summery

Do some of these book reviews feel like I'm saying the same thing over and over again? Sometimes it feels like to me too. I like simpleness books, but sometimes it can seem like they are repeating what other people have already written.

So why do I keep reading them? Because I need to be reminded of what I already know. Many times I don't learn something new while reading a simpleness book, but I'm reminded of what's important. I'm reminded to stay on track, don't get discouraged, and just keep doing what's important.

And I have about 10 more simpleness book on my to-read list. So sometime in the future I plan to do another month of reviews. For now I hope you have enjoyed these reviews. God bless and keep you, Rose

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Living With Less

Although this book doesn't have simpleness in the title, it's another great book to get you thinking about how to downsize. With practical stories and advice for how to remove clutter (from your heart and home and schedule) this is one of the best books I have read. 

Mark Tabbs simple and matter-of-fact style makes this an easy and good read. His goal was to help change your thinking, not just changing the outward things. I liked that. It made a much bigger impact and set this book apart. 

Saturday, May 25, 2013

When Life's Not Working: 7 Simple Choices For A Better Tomorrow

This one ended up not being one of my favorites. The title intrigued me, but when I started reading the book I didn't like it as much as I thought I would. 

Maybe this is because it is written from a guys perspective. It seemed like most of the subjects in this book were aimed at men. So if you're a guy who stumbled across my blog, I think this is the book for you. 

However, in saying that this book did get me to thinking that I do need to have some consistency in my life. Something that stays the same. Something that I enjoy. It was a good reminder. 

So while not the best simpleness book I've ever read, it was okay. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

A Place Called Simplicity

They sold their house and moved out to a quiet setting to find simplicity. In this simpleness book, Claire relates her simpleness journey. I enjoyed her simple and honest style of writing. 

When you open the book and start reading, it makes you feel calm and renewed. 

She also gives practical advice for steps you can take to a more simple lifestyle.  

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Simply Dinner

Are you looking for something easy to make for dinner?

Simply Dinner is a great little cookbook. Making meals in minutes have never been easier. With great recipes like Texas Meatloaf, Broccoli-Cheese Casserole, Lemon Baked Salmon, Herb Biscuits, and more this is a great cookbook to add to your collection.


Thursday, May 16, 2013

Tell Your Time

So simple isn't in the title of this book, but this book is still great if you want to get some pointers on simplifying your time. 

It's a short nice read that helps you start thinking about what you really want to do with your time. Having goals and focusing on them is the best way to ensure the most important stuff gets done. 

Plus it had some great tips from making goals, planning schedules, and more.   

Monday, May 13, 2013

Keep It Simple For The Busy Woman

This has been my favorite simpleness book that I have read so far. It's like a simpleness devotional. It is roughly divided into 12 months worth of devotionals on living life more simply.  

With specific suggestions, stories, and ways to enjoy life, this book is wonderful. Things like, splurge and take a friend to the theater. Bring some flowers in from outside. Take some time today to do something fun. And so on. 

I know that I came away from this book feeling encouraged and refreshed.  

Friday, May 10, 2013

Home Made Simple Review

I first saw this book in a discount bookstore. I skimmed through it and took note of the title, but didn’t get it.

I wasn’t sure if it was worth the money I would be spending. Was I wrong.

I later went online and got this book from Amazon, It was worth every penny. From home organization to decorating this book was a wonderful resource for living more simply. Each chapter covered a different area of your home. Cleaning, meals, gift ideas, decorating, gardening, and so forth.

I enjoyed it so much. It also got me to thinking about organizing my cleaning schedule. I had been haphazardly cleaning before, but after reading the book I started doing a cleaning day every Monday. It helped me take charge of my chores instead of letting them control me.

This is a perfect book for anyone who is wanting to get some fresh ideas for how to make their home a simple inviting place to be.

Or if you want to read up on some fun ideas right now, head over to the website Home Made Simple.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Book: Simple Living

This was another one that went on my favorites list. The subtitle says it all Thirty Days to Less Stuff And More Life.

These easy to read chapters give you things that you can do each do to move toward a more simple life. Each day covered a different area of life and encouraged you to step up and enjoy what you've been given and eliminate things that you don't need.

I got this book for free on Kindle, But if you have the chance to pick it up for a few dollars it's worth the read.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Simple Book Reviews

By Rose H.

This month I decided to do something different. I’ve been thinking about this awhile and finally got around to writing the posts and posting them.

All during May, I am going to be posting books reviews of simpleness books I’ve read.
Here’s a few books from this month’s line-up.

Home Made Simple

A Place Called Simplicity

The Simple Home

Keep It Simple

Simple Living

Tell Your Time

When Life's Not Working: 7 Simple Choices For A Better Tomorrow

Monday, April 15, 2013

Where Did My Simple Life Go?

Maybe not out loud, but I have been wondering this lately.

In the midst of classes, volunteering, deadlines, cleaning, trips, and the craziness of life, where is this simple life that I long for?

Yet even as I write these words, I'm reminded of the fact that simpleness doesn't have anything to do with my to-do list or calender. It has to do with what's getting done.

One simpleness book asked it's readers to look what got done over the last week. That was a good indication of what was most important to you. You'll get that stuff done. Even if you say that baking cookies for the family is more important than writing the book, if the book get's written, but the baking sheets go unused, you have just proved which was more of a priority.

So what was important to me this week? What actually got done? Some time spent with family, quilting with my sister, a lot of editing, two days of volunteering, and a visit with a friend. Even with all the crazy, I'm thankful  for all the wonderful moments that this week has contained.

God's working out so many wonderful and amazing things in my life. I may having some growing pains, but I know the end result will be worth it. And that is a simple truth that I can carry around with me as I go about my crazy, busy, wonderful, amazing day.

How have you found simple lessons in the midst of your crazy life?

Friday, April 5, 2013

Simple White Space

I was running at a frantic pace. With everything that needed to get done, who had time to rest? I ran from one event to another not taking time to catch my breath and listen to God and family. My bad.

It came to an end one night when I came home emotionally exhausted and getting anger with family members. I had a long talk with my parents that night.

One thing that I realized is that I'm  not superwoman. I can't be running around 24/7 and expect to have any bad side effects. I'm human and I need rest. The other thing I'm realizing is that the world will go on without me. Just because I don't do a review or write a blog post doesn't mean that the world will fall apart.

Another thing I realized is the need for what we like to call white space. White space is simply time where you don't have anything scheduled. Time when you can rest, goof off, enjoy some down time, recharge your batteries. Time to chill is so important. It prepares you for the work ahead and helps you stay grounded in what's important. Never underestimate it.

So if you're feeling a little warn and breathless, just take a moment and plan some white space. It can be as simple as playing a game with your siblings or watching a movie. Just plan some time just to breath.

Well, I have a few things to do before my white space kicks in. But after the list is done, it feels like a computer game kind of day.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Simple Pardon

Please excuse my lack of posts.

The last few weeks have been a wonderful mix of crazy and wonderful.

Challenges have been going well. I continue to read, crochet, and love family. Hospital volunteering is becoming more fulfilling than I ever could have imagined. I enjoy watch how God uses me to touch the lives of others with life and love.

Spring is coming back to Texas. Ah, my soul always feels better when the green returns to the trees and the flowers bloom.

Take some time today. Enjoy spring. Soak in the life that is blooming all around you.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Simply Going The Extra Mile

Yet again, with how busy my life had become, my poor little blog has been neglected. Sometimes doing what God has called you to do takes energy off of other things.

Yesterday I went in for an extra day of hospital volunteering. I ended up working all day in the gift shop. And I so enjoyed it.

One of the things that volunteering has taught me is that it's so important to "go the extra mile". Take on a hard job without being asked, be kind to a patient even when they're being cantankerous, help a patient do something even if it isn't in the volunteer description, and so on. I'm amazed at how surprised people are when I go the extra mile. For me doing things just to make the patients or nurses day better is a pleasure.

In life there are plenty of opportunities to "go the extra mile". To do something extra and kind for someone else. Take advantage of them and love others with everything you have.

For me I come home everyday from volunteering exhausted, but I feel good inside. Content that I was able to make someone's day a little brighter.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Of Simple Goings And Doings

Yes, so yesterday I looked up and went, "I have a blog that people look at on occasion and if I don't post soon they might think I have fallen off the face of cyberspace.

Life has been really good lately. I've had a lot more peace even though my schedule has been hectic. God's helped me to focus on what I am working on and do my best there. It's been very freeing.

Last week I did my first day of hospital volunteering. That was so much fun. I like the people I get to volunteer with and they were very kind to newbie me.

And this weekend we had some dear missionary friends from Africa come over for a visit. I haven't seen them in 4 years and it was a real treat. Hearing about things through e-mail and facebook just isn't the same as a sit down talk. We had a great time hearing their stories and sharing what God was doing on this side of the Atlantic.

This week I have a lot going, but I'm not really worried. I know that God is going to give me the strength and courage to do all that I need to do. For now I can rest in that.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Making Simpleness out of The Craziness

My life has definitely taken a wonderful crazy turn.

Two weeks ago I was wishing for more activity and more to do. I got what I asked for. I now feel like I'm running around like crazy trying to do everything that needs to get done.

Despite all the craziness however, I am enjoying seeing things get up and going. I start volunteering at the hospital on Tuesday. And I'm pleased to report that ASL has been going very well. I'm on schedule for goals so far.

In the midst of everything, God has been teaching me to breath and let Him be in control. Knowing I'm not in charge makes life so much more simple. In the midst of the craziness, I can look to the One who is in control and be at peace.

I pray that you are all doing well and that you have a great weekend. Rose

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Simple Fragments

Some of them hurt as I pick them up. The memories piercing deep into my heart. Others feel beautiful and smooth like polished glass.

As I pick up these fragments of my life I wonder at their meaning. A friend who turned on me. A group of homeschoolers that never accepted me. People who would call me names in front of my back. A drought of more than just rain to dry earth. People who didn't come through. These fragments have cut deep, slicing away opportunities, killing dreams, and causing more pain than I can tell.

Through the tears I see other fragments. Shards of beauty. Singing in the spring sunshine. Dancing in Daddy's arms. The warm hugs of my family. A performance done well. The loving touch of a friend. A teachers laughter. A song that lifted up eyes heaven-ward. I could go on like his forever, maybe one day I will.

As I cling to this fragile shard called now, I think about these fragments of my life. All of the seemingly unrelated and broken things that make up my life. What is God doing? All I see are fragmented pieces of a seemingly meaningless story.

But as I look closer I see love. Like tiny steel rods that can't be broken crisscrossing through the fragments of cut glass. God's love crisscrosses through all of these fragments binding them together in some mystical and wonderful way.

I stand back and look at these fragments framed by love. Light spills through illuminating the truth. All these shards come together to create a picture of His love and grace. And I am on my knees praising God for the fragments that show His love.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Simple Quote

Simple living is always going to be a process
Not a destination.
- Lorilee Lippincott 

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Simple Nail Polish

For Christmas my sister Sarah and friend Debra bought me nail polish. I was thrilled to try out some new colors

Source - Mom

One day I painted my nails. It was so pretty and bright. It made me feel loved. Over the next few days the polish chipped and began to fall of. Now I have half-painted nails. 

But it made me remember something that I heard one time. I can't remember if it was my Dad or someone else. They said that perfectly manicured fingernails meant that that woman didn't do anything worthwhile with her life. Doing worthwhile things are hard work. 

So I must do some worthwhile things because my polish looks like it's been through a battle. But now I smile when I look at it. I must be doing something worthwhile.  

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

I Simply Wonder

I can't belief she had done it. A girl that I had respected for her purity, decided to run off with a guy.

Parents with a kid with a mental handicap. They seem powerless to do anything about it.

An elderly woman suffering from dementia.

I could go on and on about the suffering that I see on a daily basis. But that would be pointless.

Some people when faced with pain and suffering shake a fist and ask why God could let something like this happen.

Me? The why question has been, why me? God, Why was I born into a believing home? Why did I have parents that loved me enough to do the tough things in life so that I would be the person I am? Why did I always have enough food to eat? Why did I have always more than I needed and many times more than I ever wanted? Why was I born a healthy baby girl? Why hasn't sickness touched me more? Why am I blessed with so many encouraging friends? Why is it that I get to do things like write plays, make movies, take ASL, write on five blogs, play games with me family, and a host of other things that I don't even think twice about? Why God? Why do I live in so much luxury while others live with so little?

I'll never understand. Some things aren't meant to understand. But one thing I know. I can either sit here and wonder, or I can use what I have been given to bless others. To encourage to bless and to make where I am a better place.

This is my destiny, what's yours?

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Simply Living It

Simple faith. Is there such a thing? Jesus said that even the smallest seed of faith has the ability to move mountains. When we start putting our faith into action, we cross over from being hearers to doers.

In being a part of the Live It challenge, I'm supposed to find ways to live out my faith everyday. To my family, to my friends, to the world I am to be His love and life.

You know the great thing about this is? My Father has shown me His love. All I have to do is follow in His footsteps. He has lived out His love.

But I'm not  perfect. I still struggle sometimes. Lately I haven't written much because I have been struggling. The last part of 2012 was hard for me. I was struggling with discontentment, depression, what God wanted me to do with the next part of my life, and feeling restless. For months it kept building. Boiling under the surface. Then in December I hit a wall. I was tired of living with the wild emotions. It wasn't a miracle, but on Christmas day, God set me free from the depression and pain that had been hovering over me for months. My problems didn't suddenly disappear, but my heart was healed. My workload still remained, but I now felt able to do what I was called to do.

As I have stepped into this new year, I want it to be more about living out my faith than talking about it. I can write 100 blog posts about how to live simply in Christ. But if I don't show love to my family and friends, I'm just making noise online. My heartfelt prayer is that this blog will be a reflection of God's love in my life.

As far as my simpleness journey, things are going well. I'm  enjoying time with my family and trying to enjoy the simple blessings God gives me every day. Relishing the simple pleasures of life is always a treat. And I'm  enjoying every minute of it.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy Simple New Year

Last year was an incredible year. It's been one of the busiest years of my life so far, but I really enjoyed it.

God taught me so much this year. One thing is how to live more simply in the midst of a hectic world. I find it so easy to get sucked into the craziness. I love being busy, but I never want to become so busy that I can't focus on what's important. For me one of the meanings of simplicity is being busy doing what really matters to you.

What really matters to me? Loving God and loving others. These have have been my goals since I was small, although living them out has always taken on new forms.

With each year (sometimes daily) we go and change. As I have changed, God has given me new ways to love Him through others.

This year I and the other MOHL girls are going to be taking on the challenge of living out our faith. I'm so excited about this. My goal for this year is to do more of living out my faith than I do talking about it.

To this end, I've made the following goals

1. Volunteer at a hospital.

2. Choose 1 ministry every month and make things for that ministry.

3. Read 75 books. Including rereading some devotional books, reviewing one audiobook a month, and read the free books I've gotten on my kindle.

4. Have a tea party every month.

5. Publish at least 2 plays, edit 4 plays, and write 3 plays/screenplays.

6. Continue to work on ASL.

7. Continue blogging.

8. Enjoy life as I work out my simpleness journey.