Saturday, October 18

Chapter Six

Sometimes it's hard to think of life in a "big picture" sense. You just see what's directly in front of you and you know that there has to be a solution to the problem but it's just way too big to see around. Sometimes it's homework piling up and you can't see how you could possibly finish all of it, let alone keep going and graduate. Sometimes it's a relationship that's in the rocks and you don't know how it will ever get better. Sometimes it's a bad hair day or you have a new ugly pimple on your face. In the midst of it you just feel like your world is falling apart. You feel like you can't keep going and waking up every day. You feel like doing nothing. 
But it gets better. At least that's what I keep telling myself. Everything has to come to an end, right? One day I'm going to wake up and be happy and excited. Maybe that day will be tomorrow, maybe the end of the semester, and maybe in five years. Either way, in the big picture, it's only a couple blinks away. So I'm trying to rest in what I know to be true, in the big picture and the now picture. God's unfailing love for me. 

Despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us. I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God's love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today or worries about tomorrow- not even the powers of hell can separate us from God's love.                                    Romans 8:37-38

Monday, September 22

Chapter Five

Being six hours away from home stinks. Being seven away from the love of my life really stinks. Having friends who take my weirdness makes it a whole lot better. Even though they don't understand my Harry Potter references & look at me strange when I start talking about washing my hair in Lake Michigan & my endless string of stories about my cousins. I am precisely where I am meant to be. 

Photo creds to: Lauren Anne Photography

Sunday, September 21

Chapter Four

Over the summer I had the great opportunity to be a camp counselor at the camp that I've grown up going to. Not only was it a huge privilege and blessing to be a counselor to some awesome junior high girls, but I also had the opportunity to assist in leading worship. Because I don't have the opportunity to play "for fun" very much anymore it was such a great experience to have fun playing and leading. One of the songs we played was called Alabaster by Rend Collective Experiment. I had never heard the song, but it became an immediate favorite among the campers. Since then I've been listening to them a lot and something about their music completely speaks to me. 

Saturday, September 20

Chapter Three

  This semester has been jam packed with practicing, but I still don't feel like I'm practicing enough. My Junior recital is next semester & I basically should be practicing nonstop. It's funny how the thing that used to release my stress has became my stressor. Not completely, of course. I love playing. But there isn't a time where I ever just sit down to play what I'm feeling, I'm constantly checking something off on my practicing to-do list. 

Wednesday, September 17

Chapter Two

Thank God for:
Feet that run
Lungs that breathe
Legs that bend & stretch
And Nike

Because these are the things that continue let me run & be happy even in the most trying of times.

Tuesday, September 16

Chapter One

It's been 31 days since I saw him.
I may be a cheese ball, but that feels like a long time to go without him.
I miss him.

Photo Creds: Noelle Elisabeth Photography

Sunday, September 14


As I'm entering into my third year of college I've decided to attempt to revamp my blog a bit. I'm not the same girl I was at 16 and it's silly of me to try and write about the same things that interested me back then. It's sort of left me not wanting to blog, but I miss it. Having this creative outlet is something I truly miss. So, here is to a beautiful new day. A beautiful new blog full of the daily life of a really weird girl. 

Friday, May 30


The longer I'm home the more thankful I become that this place is my home. There is literally nowhere that I would rather be than in Bliss, Michigan. I sincerely believe that there is no where else on the entire planet that is as beautiful as this place is. I'm just infatuated with the beauty that surrounds me, from the tunnel of trees that engulfs me as I drive down to the beach & go on runs, to the sunset at the top of the nearby hills. I'm have become more & more thankful that two years ago I decided to leave home. The experience has given me a deep love & appreciation for the world around me, but it has also made me realize that this place is where I want to call my home. 
I long to live a simple & meaningful life, & there is nowhere else I've found where so many simple & meaningful people have lived. Where people live on their gardens & take baths in the lake. Simple living is where it's at. 

Friday, April 4

Tis A Gift To Be Simple

Even though this place is my new home and I love being here, sometimes I just miss home. I miss being in the middle of nowhere. I miss it actually being dark out when I turn off the lights, and I miss the miles I can run without seeing another soul. I miss the trees and forests and my lake. I miss the quiet. I miss looking up at the night sky and being drowned in silence and astounded with how big the world is and how small I am. I'm a middle of nowhere sort of person. And while it may seem simple and dull to some, to me it's simple and perfect. I think the world needs a little more simplicity. 

Friday, March 21

March Blogger Swap

For the first time I ever I decided to be apart of a Blog Swap! It was super exciting to me, mainly because I love receiving/sending packages and letters. It's def my love language. If you're interested in becoming a participant in the Blogger Swap that I'm apart of make sure to click the linky-poo and sign up! 
I got paired up with Jordan from The Spontaneous Idealist, who runs the cutest little blog! She is such a sweetheart and sent me the best package right when I needed it! I had been having a rough week, full of sickness, and it was just such a blessing to get her package yesterday. I walked to the other end of campus after getting a package slip in my mailbox and could barely contain myself when I saw who it was from. Okay, I couldn't contain myself, because I ripped it open on my walk back to my dorm and practically started crying at how absolutely sweet Jordan was. I'll share a little bit of what Jordan said about each item in my package:

Paris tissues- Because no one should have to deal with spring allergies- at least not in style.
Stationary- Writing is a mutual love between us. 
Floral headband- So dainty and elegant. 
Lollia no. 19 "Breathe"- from a boutique I visited over spring break. Literally a breath of fresh air.
Yankee Candle "Sweet Honeysuckle"- The smell of summer down here in the South. 

Seriously! What a kind spirit she is! I absolutely love everything in my package. It's nice to have such springy things to remind me that warmth is near, when Indiana just got snow overnight. 

Tuesday, March 11

Everything We Do.

Sometimes when you're just having one of those days where you really miss your boyfriend and start getting depressed because you won't see him for another forty-plus days, you just have to pick yourself up. You have to say to yourself, "I'm going to make this day worth being away from him, and I'm going to choose to be happy!" Kind of like that really awesome BBC Robin Hood quote, "Everything is a choice, everything we do!" And then you obviously have to start taking selfies to cheer yourself up.
... and cheer you up, it does.

P.S. If anyone besides me and my family has seen this wonderful BBC show I'm talking about maybe you could speak up so I don't feel like that big of a nerd. But lets be real, here. I sort of am. 

Tuesday, February 25

Setting Souls on Fire

Do you ever hear or read something that simply lights your soul on fire? That rekindles that spark that you just realize in that moment has went out without you ever even realizing it? That speaks to the heart of your spirit and you say quietly to yourself, "Ah! I remember now. That's why I was born, that's why I'm doing what I'm doing." And in nothing more than a second your being is awakened, and it's so strange because you were only vaguely aware that it was asleep. It happened for me. I watched this video while sitting alone in my apartment and began sobbing. I've felt these things before, but I haven't for a really long time. And listening to this beautiful woman speak about what music is for her rekindled my soul. I'm so excited to practice. I'm excited to go to my Music History class and my rehearsals. I am so infinitely blessed to have music in my life. 

Wednesday, February 19

Worry Less

Remember back in the day when I used to do "outfit posts"? Well you can all be grateful that I don't do those anymore because something like this is my basic daily outfit, just swapping out the shorts for leggings when I have to go out into the world. There's just something about wearing workout shorts that makes my soul really happy, maybe it's because of my recent obsession with running and I wear them daily for a few hours anyways. The running has been magnificent, and yesterday I ran my longest distance and quickest 10k time: 8 miles in 69 minutes. Not too shabby. The running thing has just been the best thing that I've been doing this semester. Last semester felt so stressful and I had no way to just release my stress, but running daily has really helped to keep me sane. Even though I detest running on a treadmill I'm so grateful to be in an environment that allows me run even on the coldest of days. When my day is too stressful for me to handle all I need are my running shoes and I'm ready to go. 

Monday, February 17

It's The Little Things...

... like being able to slow my day down so that I can have a good breakfast. 
Most days I don't do that. I have an 8 AM class M/W/F and usually wake up, get dressed, brew myself a cup of coffee and leave. But on Tuesday and Thursday I try to slow myself down and eat something nutritious and take some time to read The Good Book. 

Wednesday, February 12

Let's Talk About Love

And, I don't just mean the lovey-dovey kind of love. I mean, true, real, unconditional love. Love between friends. Romantic love. Love of family. 
I think I've learned more this school year about love than I have in all of my previous years combined. I've learned about what it means to love people for where they're at and for who they are, especially when you're not overjoyed about where they're at and who they are at a particular moment. I've learned that if you're romantically committed to someone it's completely necessary to be understanding and supportive, because that may just be the best way to show them that you love them. I've learned that sometimes showing love means doing dishes. Like, gross dishes. Love, the true stuff, means that sometimes you'll be inconvenienced so that life is easier for the person you're loving. Love means giving your roommate your last two eggs. I've learned that love is patient, and kind, and everything else that 1 Corinthians 13 says. I've learned that love does not equal physically being near the person you love, therefore love does not mean kissing and hugging and cuddling. I've learned that loving someone means being positive and nurturing in tough situations, even if the situation seems bleak in the moment. Love is boundless. Love, true love, isn't so much about having really happy feelings, but more about trying to bless someone else. Loving someone isn't about me. Loving someone is about them. Because, there will be days when the person you're investing in is in a bad mood and that certainly doesn't feel good. There are messy feelings when people are involved, and if loving people was about good feelings we'd all be out of luck. Loving someone is about trying to make their life better because you see them as someone who is totally worth the effort, because it will take effort. A lot of effort. 

We love because he first loved us. -1 John 4:19

Wednesday, February 5

Who Are You When I'm Not Looking?

 As I've mentioned probs a million times, I really enjoy getting to know bloggers. I like reading things that are facts about them because it makes me feel as if I know them as people a little bit more. Like more than just there thoughts and, you know, useless information about their daily lives and beliefs. I just like knowing random meaningless facts. So here are 25 meaningless facts about yours truly:

1. Do you have a middle name?
I do! If you've browsed through my very old blog posts you'll see that I actually used to go by my middle name on this little blog. If you haven't creeped on me like that, my middle name is Lauren. It's after my great (or is great-great?) grandfather: Laurence. 
2. What was your favorite subject in school?I'm one of those really annoying people who liked school a lot, and continue to like school. I would say growing up my favorite subject was probably Literature, unless we want to count my piano lessons. Now, I would definitely say my favorite "subject" is any of my Music Theory classes. It's so interesting to know why music works the way it does. 
 3. What's your favorite drink?I feel like I simply love drinks. I love a good cup of coffee. And Cherry Pepsi. And Coke. And Green Tea. And water. And Gatorade. 
4. What's your favorite song at the moment?
This is the hardest question anyone could ever ask me. I guess I would say that currently it's "Strong Enough" by Matthew West. But it's pretty much ever changing. 
5. What would you name your children?I pray that I never have a little girl, not only because I don't think I could handle a little girl but also because I can't think of any good names. But I know that my first son is going to be named Samuel David. It's been set for basically ever. I also really want to name a little boy Finnegan, but Hunter want's nothing of that. 
6. Do you participate in any sports?As a kid I did gymnastics for around 10 years, and I currently run a lot if that counts. 
7. What's your favorite book? Probably the Fault in Our Stars by John Green. Which sounds totally cliche, but in my defense, I've been in love with John Green for years and I liked it before it became popular. Which also makes me sound like a pathetic hipster, but whatever. 
8. What's your favorite color?Everyone I know is surprised when I say this, but my favorite color is definitely blue. It's only surprising because I have pink everything, and pink definitely is a close second, but I really love blue! It's such a pretty, calming color. 
9. What's your favorite animal?

A giraffe. Go figure, right? 
10. What's your favorite perfume?
I don't really experiment much with perfume, but I love the body spray "Love Spell" by Victoria's Secret. 
11. What's your favorite holiday?I honestly love Halloween. I mean, I love Christmas and Easter and all those holidays, but I just have such a good time with Halloween. I just think it's so important to have a holiday that's based around imagination and pretending. I don't know. 

12. Have you graduated from High School?
I graduated from high school two years ago, how crazy is that?
13. Have you been out of the country?I've been to Canada a few times, but no where else. BUT! In the spring of 2015 I'm hoping to go to Spain so that should be exciting. 
14. Do you speak any other languages?I learned French in high school, and I've even sung in French but I don't really know it.
 15. Do you have any siblings?I have two younger sisters. They're wonderful and crazy. 

16. What's your favorite store?
I'm not sure if I have a favorite store. I like going to Target, and I like going to most book stores. 17.What's your favorite restaurant?My favorite restaurant when I'm home is this place called The Depot. They have this delicious deep fried cauliflower that I'm absolutely in love with. 

18. Do you like school? 
I, for the most part, really enjoy school. I'm a big learner and I like having something to do and learn constantly. School sometimes annoys me, just because of homework and how long it takes for me to get the degree that I ultimately want, but for the most part I absolutely adore it.19. Who are some of your favorite Bloggers?This list could definitely go on forever and forever, but recently I've really loved Yuni. She's a really sweet girl who actually did my new blog design for me! I also really love keeping up with Abbi and am obsessed with Elaine's new hair and her absolutely perfect baby boy. 

20. What's your favorite movie? She's the Man is always at the top of my list, but I also love Mulan and The Help. 
21. What are some of your favorite TV shows?My ultimate favorite TV show ever is Parks & Recreation. Amy Poehler just gets me. I also am a huge Pretty Little Liars fan, and crappy television like Teen Mom.
22. PC or Mac?Mac all the way!  

23. What phone do you have?
I have a beautiful little iPhone. Typical, right? I just really cannot talk enough about how much I just genuinely love Apple products. I just feel like they're so easy for the common person to use, and I'm so happy to be able to use mine. Plus they're gorgeous. 
24. How tall are you?I'm a gigantic 4'10".
 25. Any pets? 
I have a dog, a collie, named Sophie and a cat named Mercy. I also have a horse, Sierra. 

P.S. This photo was taken by my wonderful roommate, Lauren of Lauren Anne Photography. If you're in the Columbus or Mishawaka area you should definitely give her a look! She takes beautiful photos of everything from Seniors to mini Easter Sessions and Engagement Sessions. Check her out! 

Thursday, January 30

It's A Thief

  I detest the comparison game, but I find myself playing it an awful lot. I feel like in college there's this unspoken competition: who has the hardest major. And on top of that: who has the hardest major on top of the hardest job. The sad thing is, I find myself playing that game a lot but get really annoyed when other people try to play along... because obviously my major is the hardest. The thing I'm trying to remind myself is that everyone has it hard, we're just all dealing with different kinds of hard. Physics is hard. But, practicing 12 hours a week is hard, too. And practicing 12 hours a week doesn't make physics any less hard, and vice versa. Working while in college is hard, and I give mad props to anyone working 10 hours a week all the way up to 40+. But doing "just" college is hard, too. And neither one takes away from the hardness of the other.
I fall victim to this vicious game way too often. I see my schedule online with a list of 11 classes I'm registered for, I look at my required practice hours, and the two Bible studies I'm signed up for and I think, "No one knows a busy schedule like a music major! I have it really hard! Psh, I wish I could be someone who's only signed up for 5 classes! That's so easy! If I had 5 classes of course I could work long hours during the week!" This is so ridiculous and wrong of me, and it only ends in me being bitter. Being bitter takes a lot of energy, a lot of energy that could be put towards bettering myself. A lot of energy that could otherwise be used to bless people, and bless the Creator. 
I think I, and probably a lot of people, need to get to that middle ground. Where we're aware that we do have it hard, but so does everyone else. Where we can appreciate what other people do, instead of scrutinizing how easy their lives are. Comparison destroys. 
"Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job week done, and you won't need to compare yourself to anyone else." -Galatians 6:4  

I will say this... my home is better than anyone else's. That's not comparison, that's simple fact. Just look at that sunset. 

Tuesday, January 28

Life Is Like Borrowed Chords...

Something can be said for taking moments out of your day to drink a little coffee and reflect on the graciousness of our God. While I'm over here dwelling on all of the parts of life that have brought me down, God is already thinking up ways to make my life a testimony of His power and grace. When I focus on all of the negative, God is working double time to bring my life to a positive ending. It's sort of like a borrowed chord. It doesn't sound right in the middle of the song, it sounds ugly and like it shouldn't belong. But God, the composer of life, knows the rules and He tonicizes it. He brings it back to where it should be, and then you can understand how that borrowed chord fit in and that it really did belong and it was placed there to tell a story. Maybe it was put there to spice it up, or depict the text of Christ. Life is a little like counterpoint, and it's a good thing we have a composer who not only knows the rules but He created them and is the best composer out there. 

Thursday, January 16

On the Podium

I'm a Music major. I practice my instrument, piano,  at least 12 hours a week, so that come jury time I can try to show my improvement over the semester in under five minutes. I take 11 classes for 17 credits. I am in 4 ensembles that require not only more practice but also at least one (sometimes two or three) performances on weekends. I have to go to every single music production on campus for a 0 credit class (yeah, those exist), and if I miss one of the actual classes for that 0 credit class I'll fail. It's easy to start thinking about how hard the major is and wondering if I'm even talented enough to make it instead of pointing my eyes on Christ. Even though I go to a Christian college where I attend chapel 3 times a week and go to various Bible studies, it's easy to completely disconnect my performing and music from Christ. But, then there are days when I am sitting in music classes learning about borrowed chords and conducting techniques and suddenly a Biblical concept finally just clicks for me. 

I'm in Advanced Conducting, which to non-musicians may sound like an "easy A" sort of class. But if you're familiar at all with music you'll know that clear conducting is vital to performing and for the most part the conductor doesn't get much credit. If you go and listen to a phenomenal orchestra play a two hour long symphony chances are that you'll marvel at the talent of the musicians, the violinists that were  playing as if their fingers may tumble on top of each other or the tuba player who held a note for a number of bars. What you don't think about is the talent of the conductor. Before I came to college and became involved in a number of ensembles I had no idea the importance of a conductor. The musicians knew and played their part, and that was it. But now that I've been involved in large groups I can understand the importance of a good conductor. When playing in a large group it's easy to get lost. You have a part completely separate from the majority of the other musicians, but it needs to fit perfectly. If someone is off by half a beat it may ruin the entire flow. So that's where the conductor comes in. The conductor has the full score, he or she knows the parts of every individual and is there to keep everyone going. The conductor has the full picture, while the musicians only have a little glimpse of what's really going on. But this does absolutely no good if the musicians aren't keeping their eyes on the conductor. The conductor tries to communicate in every way without words what the future is holding for them, he or she is trying to cue everyone in at the right moment and they're keeping time. But, if the musicians aren't keeping their eyes on the conductor it doesn't matter how spot on the conductor is, the music won't be right. If you don't understand that the conductor really does know best and you aren't watching him or her, you're in for a world of trouble. 

This is not unlike our relationship with God. He has the full score, He's studied the score, and He knows exactly when your part is supposed to come in. He's keeping the time, He's cueing, and He's communicating with us as perfectly. But, if we aren't keeping our eyes on Him we'll never be able to see when He's giving us that cue. We'll just follow along on our sheet music, thinking that's all that we need to do. But, because we're human we'll miscount a measure or two and get lost. How much better would it be if we would just keep our eyes glued on the Conductor, trusting in Him to know the score? 

Monday, January 13

Recent Reads

I've been in the mood to read in since finals last semester. There's just something about reading a good book for the heck of it that always entices me. Over Christmas break I read Sarah Dessen's "Dreamland" as it's one of my roommates favorite books that she was dying to have me read. I read it in two days or so and my reading spark was officially rekindled, so when I got back to school and found myself with next to nothing to do right now I picked a few books up from the library. I'm currently reading "Sex God" by Rob Bell and am finding so much truth within it! He's just one of those people who can easily voice what's on their mind, whether it be in speaking or writing, and he's full of so much knowledge that it's absolutely incredible. Anyway, I completely recommend the book! Are there any books that anyone has been reading lately that have really spoke to them? Fill me in, I'm always up for a new book or two... at least after I read the ever growing pile on my desk. 

P.S. I linked the books on Amazon in case anyone is interested! They're so reasonably priced in the used section that you might as well read them, right?!? 

Thursday, January 9

This Semester I Will...

1. Drink more water.
2. Wear less makeup.
3. Practice at least two hours a day.
4. Take time to run and workout
5. Make that Dean's List again. 
6. Begin to love people through their flaws and take them for who they are. 

Monday, January 6

Transformation Tuesday

  Dear Hunter,
Three years ago on December 27th I had no idea how much you would mean to me right now in this second. I had no idea that you would go from a cute long haired 15 year old boy in a Carhart to a cute short haired 18 year old boy in basketball shorts and long socks. I had no idea that I would go from a really awkward super conservative home schooled 16 year old girl to a more confident and outspoken 19 year old college girl. What I really didn't know was that even though you and I have completely transformed, in most ways possible, we'd still be together. We've grown as two individual people, but we've done it together while accepting each other's changes. You've been there when I moved away, and I'll be there for you when you move away. This past year has brought so many changes for us, and this next year will bring even more. You're going to be going to college for the first time, and we'll be separated by even more distance. But I can't wait to take it on with you. Knowing that no matter how much we grow separately, hundreds of miles apart, we'll always come back together. I love you. And thank you for being with me for 3 years. That's longer than a lot of married people's entire relationships. And we are. And here we will remain. I love you.
Love Always,
Your Hannah