Sundays in the South

Written By: Kimberly - Jul• 20•14

Macon Georgia

Sundays in the South…

Church.  Porch Swings.  Family.  Lemonade.  Football.  Books and blankets.   Flipflops.  Sand.

All the good things in life.

If I lived in my dream home – I think this would be my working island (bar) in front of a glorious window to suck up all the sunshine and see the blue sky or enjoy a good stormy day.

I love lemonade – but I want to cut the sweetness of it.  Maybe this one would hit the spot.

Since I’m in the gym these days working on my shoulders – I think this dress in its glorious purple hue might just be a good motivation!

Sundays definitely mean football, but football is also played on Saturday – and I love the Gators.

Church: more than hats and gloves and cool jeans and loud concerts or short preaching.  More about community and the Gospel.  Build a culture of community (living the gospel) in your church and home.

 

Ephesians on Kindle (SO EXCITED)

Written By: Kimberly - Jul• 15•14

Ephesians

 

Big announcement: Prayers for the Journey: Ephesians edition is finally on Kindle!  That’s right – I have a self-published book on Amazon!!!

Here is a review of it on the CBMW site via my friend Courtney Reissig

If you haven’t heard of Prayers for the Journey – it is a kindle book devotional with journaling pages that literally walks through specific verses in Ephesians (or other books of the Bible) and helps wives know how to pray the word for their husbands.  I’ve been writing these since I got married, but have been learning about praying for my husband for two decades.

There are so many people to thank:

My parents and in-laws : thank you for always being an encouragement and my greatest fans

My Mister: thank you for being one who sanctifies me and prays for me – and also my first editor

Amy Torcasso: My designer – who also did the work on Treasuring Christ when I was writing it – but now we stay in touch through this!  Super talented and selfless

Sarah Popovczak: My editor for this edition of the Prayers for the Journey – she’s about to be a mom too!

Amelia McNeilly: A great publicist and encourager and the one who got this worked out for Kindle

Phyllis Robshaw: Amazing mentor and the one who lives out this act of praying for her husband and family and me – by praying the Word.

My Little Misters: Dudes that will make amazing husbands one day – and I’m already praying for them as they will be husbands to precious wives.

Margo Bowen: a mom of many and grandmom to many and a wife to one.  Thank you for loving my Mister as a son and for writing the introduction to this edition.

Future Editions: Nehemiah is available now on the blog for free.  Colossians is being typed up now and getting ready to be sent to my editor before she has her baby.  James is being written and prayed.  1 Peter is the the next one in the works.

Thanks all.  Please feel free to get the word out.  2.99 is a great deal and its for your kindle!

This Week in the Charming South Kitchen

Written By: Kimberly - Jul• 14•14

July is gonna be one busy month.  And since I’ve buckled down on the healthy eats (cleaner food, healthier food) to get off this baby weight and just weight I’ve put on since being back in Raleigh in 2010 – it may change things up a bit.

The Mister and I were talking in Hilton Head this weekend about how I’d miss eating fun food.  Most fun food is not healthy – like massive sweet potato pancakes drizzled with pecan brittle and syrup.  Doused with whipped cream – the real stuff.  I mean come on.  But, he helped me to see that you don’t have to cut out fun food entirely – just limit it and have smaller portions.  And make clean healthy food fun too!  It sure is pretty!

I also have a friend coming in town who loves to adventure, cook, and take photos as much as I do.  And we have a date night this week! :)

Monday: A kale quiche with havarti and turkey sausage

Tuesday: Panzanella and Grilled Chicken

Wednesday: Date night!

Thursday: Grilled Peach Pizza m Love and Olive Oil

Friday: Leftovers and random food all wknd since the Mister is at a conference.

Other times: macarons and zucchini muffins

Creatives: Photographer Mallory Ward

Written By: Kimberly - Jul• 08•14

mallory ward photography

Love the way that people weave through your life at random times and bring light and sunshine each time they enter.

I first met Mallory when she was in high school when I was chaperoning a ski retreat with a church I used to be on staff with in Florida.  She had an eye for celebrating the everyday even then.  I love her pursuit of others, her craft, her friends, and her Jesus.

mallory 1

Now, she is in Woodstock for just a brief journey in life before she moves to Australia early next year, and we’ve reconnected – she’s come to our home and eaten at our table, she has given me lots of places to try out for coffee and good eats, and she has shared some of her life with me again.

mallory 5

Let her glimpse through her lens open your world to its love and light.

mallory 4

The above picture is a sweet newborn session with our dear friends Jack and Maizey.  Love this photo!

mallory 2

 

mallory 3

 

1.  How did photography come to have such a grip on your life?

Ever since I was a little girl, I would always take my mom’s camera and take pictures of anything I could. I always loved watching her reaction when all of these random photos came through on her camera, she knew I was discovering a hobby, yet little did I know it would become a passion. I had a friend in high school that would always take photos with me. We would pose, go on adventures with our cameras and play with natural light. Sometimes we would even skip morning classes to catch the perfect early morning haze on the island. I graduated high school in 2009, and that’s the year that I pretty much realized that I was really in-love with the beauty of a photo. My sister’s friends who had families started contacting me wanting me to do photo sessions of them, and then I just kept shooting. Everywhere I would go I would have my camera with me. I started taking my friends at college and around the area on photo adventures and just using them as models to expand my photography portfolio. So here I am- 5 years later, with many clients, and the same ones I started with who have supported me since the very beginning.

 

2 What would be a dream fulfilled for you and your lens and your soul?

A dream of mine when it comes to my photography would definitely be to use it as a way to record the adventures that life takes me on. When I went on my first mission trip to Haiti a year ago, I absolutely loved the way I was able to communicate with the Haitian kids through the power of a photo. It literally was like they had never seen how beautiful they were before. I would love to travel, and just take photos of different cultures, people and nature.

3.  What do you most like to be peering at when holding your camera?

Nature & people. Nature because of the sincerity of it and people because… well, people are just awesome. I absolutely love capturing couples during an engagement session because their love is so powerful it explodes through the photo. I love to put people in nature because it’s like the beauty of trees, flowers, or a sandy beach changes their perspective and gives them a sense of freedom and happiness. Children, also, are amazing to capture. They are so innocent and happy. Eyes, skin, smiles- there is so much beauty in everything!

4.  Is there any place you are dying to do a photo shoot?

I don’t think I could pick one exact place to do a lifestyle shoot. There are far too many amazing places in the world I have yet to see. Definitely would want to choose a place that if authentic, unique and natural. From an alley in Paris to a field in Ireland… I really couldn’t pick just one!

5.  What are three words that describe your photography?

Beautiful moments captured.

 

Faces: Happy First Birthday Sweet Girl

Written By: Kimberly - Jul• 08•14

 

Elysa Grace

Friends…life is much sweeter with friends.  This sweet girl’s momma and I were friends in seminary, I attended her parents’ wedding, and now, all these years later, we are living next door to each other.  Sharing life.  Sharing celebrations.

This family was in Florida for E. G.’s actual birthday but we are celebrating today by taking her first year portraits.

First birthday celebration

One of the great aspects I love living in the Atlanta Metro area is the lovely green spaces all over it.  Yes, traffic is a mess.  But, if you can traverse the traffic jams you get to the beautiful grounds of all these parks.  East Cobb park is one of them.  Only about 4 miles from us, it is a joyous place for our children to play together.

Sugar and Spice

Here’s to so many more sweet years Elysa – enjoy the new found joys and experiences of toddler-hood!

Pink and cement

 

What I Learned Today:

Written By: Kimberly - Jun• 24•14

blue hydrangea

I love living life with people and catching up with friends.  Today was one of those days.  And for me, catching up and hanging out usually teaches me something.  Today was no different.

I’m so glad friends are in our lives.  Especially during a season with much pain, I’m thankful for those friends that brighten your day and soothe you and make you feel right at home: no matter where you are.

Three things I learned today:

1.  Being known is something that is sweet – but you don’t want everyone to know you.  I really love having honest relationships with people (and even here on the blog). I love living life with folks and knowing what goes on in their lives and what God is teaching them – what they are walking through.  But, there are times when being known hurts and is painful.  You can do one of two things at that moment – and I think you have to know which moment you are in : walk away or persevere.  You have to decide for yourself with much prayer which one you should do in any given moment.  Walk away – maybe the relationship is a harmful one for you – you need to walk away.  But, in the most important relationships: your marriage, family, or tried and true friends – you persevere.

2. What do you want to be known for? How do people describe you to others? What do you want to be known for to either friends or strangers? There are some adjectives that I would love to be described as – and then there are some, that right now I’m not, but I want to be – so I know what areas I need to work on.

3. Travel – I love it. My friend travels for her job. She is not married and has the luxury of doing so. She packs up and heads out and pours into the community she is in for any given time. I love to travel and see the world. It is much harder with a husband and kids. But, I love living a life of an adventure. That’s why we are always in the car (except during nap time). I want to explore my area – which is ATL and is amazing to explore.

What are you learning right now?

This Week in the Charming South Kitchen (and help when you are tired of menu planning)

Written By: Kimberly - Jun• 23•14

Eggs

Another normal week of cooking here in the South.  Do you ever get tired of cooking or having to prepare meals for your family – or just for yourself?  I know I do.  5-7 meals each week not including breakfast and lunch – it gets tiresome and repetitive.

So, what do you do?

1.  Look at new websites and get new ideas. And you can also look at blogs that do an inspiration post (like How Sweet and Heather’s Dish). I do it to – like the Weekend Inspiration post or Link Love posts. I love giving you new blogs to read.

2.  Ask your family what are things they would like to eat. Of course my littles don’t really answer me right now, but my husband usually has good ideas. If you are having people over for dinner – ask what they would like to have.

3.  Look in your pantry and create some new dishes with what you have. I always have jiffy corn muffin mix and canned beans and soups in my pantry. Something may just catch your eye and bring some creativity to the table.

 

Monday: Farmhouse salads with fresh ingredients and hard boiled eggs and cheese and chicken strips.  One of our favorite go-to dinners.

Tuesday: We are having a first ATL house guests tonight so I wanted to know what I could cook. We are having roasted broccoli, fresh summer tomatoes, and parmesan Greek chicken.

Wednesday: Chopped Thai Salads from Pinch of Yum because the mister won’t be home till late and I can eat it right after the boys go to bed.

Thursday: Simple cold summer salads with crusty toasty french bread. Yes please.

Friday: Leftovers is what’s for dinner and then for a date night dessert: this tart. Truth be told I have a tart pan that I’ve never used. Yes, I’ve had it for about 10 years and never used it – always keeping it because I might use it one day. Well, that day is coming!

Saturday: Zucchini bread – I actually really love it. Summer goodness in loaf form. So, I’ll be chilling with this loaf, some eggs, bacon, and fruit for brinner.

Sunday: And then take some of the bread and toast it with a smearing of butter and milk and a banana. Then the hubs has this Sunday off so maybe some comfort food after church at night and leftovers for lunch. This Sloppy Joe bowl fits the bill.

Weekend Inspiration

Written By: Kimberly - Jun• 21•14

Blue Flower

Sometimes being a creative has its drawbacks.  For me, it really came this week as I thought about narrowing the fields for how I am creative.  But, all of it flows together.  And comparison isn’t good – but if you don’t see anyone ever better than you – how can you improve?

Well, I wanted to share some websites with you – ones that inspire me to be better at what I LOVE to do.  I am a creative person in most every field: from parenting, our weekly and daily schedules, photography, cooking, handlettering, cards, etc.  So, enjoy these websites and let me know some ones I can look at too!

Griffin Gibson Photography – a local to me photographer that I hope to contact soon (a friend mentioned her name to me) and take some lessons from.

Mallory Ward Photography – another young photographer that has an eye for special people and the every day.  I am having time with this girl this week.

Holly and Flora – this budding wine expert and foodie takes beautiful photography of the special and unique and fresh and local foods and spirits she makes in her home in Denver.  I always love any time I get to chat with this long-time friend.

All She Wrote Notes Calligraphy – I get the honor of hanging out with this girl in Chapel Hill in July.  Looking forward to a mini photo shoot and learning about her craft!  I love that she does it all free hand – she doesn’t print out what she does.

Adventures in Cooking – Her photography and inspiration behind her food is amazing.  Simple, rustic, beautiful.

Elyse Fitzpatrick – Her writing.  Straight forward, gospel centered.  That’s how I like to write.  Oh, to write like her (one day, maybe, ha!)

Laura Hooper Calligraphy – The travel, the style, the flare.  Love it.

 

One other note:  You’ll hear more about this in the days ahead….but I love living creatively.  I have thought about that this year – fighting the mundane, living and dwelling in creative beauty.  There is beauty all around us – so make every moment beautiful.  Glimpses of our Creator are all around us.  And beauty reflects him too.  I’ll be doing a series of blogs and photo sessions that reflect this theme as I introduce a new direction for this blog.

Be inspired.  Live Creatively.  Dwell in Beauty.

 

 

This Week in the Charming South Kitchen

Written By: Kimberly - Jun• 16•14

French Toast

Full summer time swing here in HOTlanta.  I really hate the name of that because it implies more than just weather, but maybe I can just say the ATL.  That will work for me!

Going to try some new healthy recipes this week here in the kitchen:

Monday: pork tenderloin (just as a guideline) with some relish and herbs from my friend Jayme.  Roasted corn with lime sea salt from LaJolla and cantaloupe.

Tuesday: Rice and a variation on these Greek vegetables out of a Greek cookbook from a church in Durham, NC

Wednesday: Brinner of French toast made with some Publix Breakfast bread and some bacon and eggs.

Thursday: For tacos this week – I’m going with this – and its perfect for leftovers (and who doesn’t love Doritos)

Friday: When my parents were here we visited the Marietta Diner and I had a chicken salad melt.  It was really good.  I want to recreate this with crescent rolls.  Can’t wait to share the recipe with you!

Saturday: Vegetarian this week is these lentils.  So easy too.

Sunday: Leftovers!  Mister works this Sunday too so everything will need to be quick before work and naptimes but after church.

What are you cooking this week?

Raising Godly Sons: Future Daddy Dates

Written By: Kimberly - Jun• 15•14

Future Daddy Dates

Father’s Day is a beautiful tradition.  In our world today, most fathers (especially the ones we see on the news and television and movies) are portrayed as worthless, deadbeats, sarcastic, drunk, mean to their wives, lazy, jobless, etc.  That is not the type of Dad I want to show my sons.  I’m glad I was blessed with an amazing husband who shows them what being a great dad is!

But, as a Mom to two boys – what can I do to really help them grasp on to what a Dad, a godly Dad, should be like?  My parents were in town and opted to keep our younger and I took the Eli buddy along with me to run errands.  I took this opportunity to start a tradition I will call Future Daddy Dates.

Here is what I did: I took my Buddy to McD’s and we sat and had a conversation about Daddies.  Really simple.  Not expensive.  And being that he is only 21 months, not a long time.  But one word it definitely was: Intentional.

1.  Talk about who God has called him as a Daddy to be.  Of course, I don’t know if Little e will ever be a daddy.  He may never get married or have biological or adoptive children, but that is our prayer.  So, I went through three basic characteristics of what a Daddy/Husband should be: protector, provider, and leader.  He should protect his children as best he can from the harm of the world and teach him how to love his protective care – while also teaching his children to protect themselves.  He should provide for his children.  This means working a job, whatever it takes to provide for their needs.  He should also lead his children.  This means teaching them about God, leading in humility and service, and leading their home.  The way I taught Little e about these things at McD’s was to give him examples of what his daddy does.  Like hold his hand when crossing the street.  Like working every day so we have food on the table.  Like praying before meals and orchestrating Family Worship time and taking us to church.

2.  I pointed out good daddy qualities I already see in him (even though he’s not even 2 yet).  For Little e, I told him how wonderful it is that he is joyful, funny, and hospitable.  These three traits are important for Daddies to have.  He is joyful – most of the time with a smile on his face – a smile that is contagious.  Funny – oh this life is hard and needs to have laughter in it.  Hospitable – he makes other people feel welcome and shares toys.  These base traits are great to have and will come in handy as he grows up.

3.  I told him about his Heavenly Father.  Little e is cute and funny – but he is a sinner.  He was born a sinner – in need of a Savior.  And He has a Father of Lights – giver of good gifts – who doesn’t change but sent Jesus to pay the price for his sins.  He is a God who will listen to his prayers and protect him at all times.

How are you raising your sons to be godly men?  Invest intentionally in their little lives.  You have an important role in their lives as their mother.  Use it for the sake of the gospel.