Life Letter

Dear friends,

I have decided to give up Netflix for lent. Yikes, it has been rough. I’m not Catholic but I do usually participate in lent because sometimes its good just to take a break from something that consumes time. I kinda hat not having something to watch because Timeless is off air right now and I just finished Downton Abbey, which was freaking amazing! Therefore, I would only really be watching Bones, which is on Netflix! Clearly you can see that I am struggling. But, to sit and watch tv is such a waste of time and when I spend time with the Lord I am doing work for something eternal, not earthly.  On another note, I have recently started to read Northanger Abbey, by Jane Austen. So far, it’s pretty good and it seems to be a just a cute romance novel, but hopefully something interesting will happen. Speaking of new things, I have started to try to workout every other day,which is tough because I like my sleep.  I have been using the Beach Body on demand online courses and they’re pretty good and a great way to workout out if you are on a time frame.

I am hoping to try to go pescetarian part of this summer, so  if you have any good recipes let me know! Also (this is super off topic but I freaking love Disney so naturally I had to mention it) I saw Beauty and the Beast  and it was amazing! The original version was one of my favorite movies growing up, along with Anastasia, Peter Pan, and Mulan. The cast  did such an outstanding job portraying the personalities of their diverse characters. Plus, Dan Stevens was in Downton Abbey  and I love him on that so naturally I loved him as the Beast. I’m sure my fellow theater goers were a tad irritated that I sang along with every song, laughed loudly, and slightly yelped at the end -but what can I say? I am a dedicated fan. Sidenote: The scene where Belle goes atop the grassy hill and sings about traveling is the scene I tried to recreate as a small child. I would go in my yard and try to mimic Belle and the way she walks on the grass without smashing it. Needless to say, I was not successful.

Lately I have been struggling with finding joy in everyday moments, although it has gotten better. I have had to pray that God would show me joy in simplicity. And he has. I love that God is allowing me to see such things, it’s quite special. It’s also a great way to start your day. To live in today and not yesterday or tomorrow.

So, there it is. A small update on my life. My your life be filled with joy and Disney songs.

xo, Em

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2016. A Year at a Glance.

2016. Another year has passed. Its crazy to think that December 31, 2008 was 8 years ago. So in reflecting on this past year I have decided to write about my highlights, losses, and favorite moments… all through pictures. 

Spring Break: I went on a mission trip to the Rio Grande Valley and got to work with refugees ( not pictured). Even though there was a slight language barrier, I still made a connection with a very special family. God’s work here is crazy.


March 24: I tried out, and made, my high school’s varsity drill team. Such a surreal moment, something I had dreamed of since 6th grade. Hard work really does payoff.


Summer Trip: Colorado was unreal. The views were breathtaking. I was so happy to be accompanied by my sweet family and get to spend a few days with them in God’s beauty.


August 26: My 15th birthday and also my very first football game on drill team. I will forever cherish this day and all my sweet friends who have stuck with me! 


August 27: Ate the best donut in Dallas. Hands down great day.


Homecoming: Enough said. 


Arboretum: Such a fun time with my DG. I love being with them and spending time in God’s word together. Y’all rock!


Halloween: My friend and I carved these bomb pumkins, real proud moment.


I forgot to take pictures at Thanksgiving and Christmas. 😦

Zoo ( December 26): I saw a baby elephant and touched a snake, overall 10/10 solid trip!


These are some of my most memorable times in 2016 but I did have some losses as well. I hurt my hamstring ( for the third time that year) and missed out some on football season. I also had my handful of break downs. But, this year I tried to look at the glass half full. I am grateful for all the moments, good and bad because I can learn from both. So long 2016, and helllooo 2017! It’s going to be the best yet. 

Holiday Report

Technically speaking, we have one day of December left, better yet-2016. Thus, I have decided to do my monthly/seasonal favorites now! This holiday season went by very quickly. I didn’t get out of school until the 21st of December, so that may be a contributor to my problem. But regardless, it was such a lovely season and reflection and rest. I am enjoying taking a break from my chaotic schedule and getting to relax a bit. Anyways, let us get on with it…

Currently this December:

Reading: Half the Sky by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn- this is such an excellent read that really shows you the inside of human trafficking and women oppression worldwide and how simple education and encouragement can fix it.

Watching:

Live TV Timeless, This is Us, Speechless

Netflix & etc.- Call the Midwife, Bones, Downton Abbey

(I am watching way to many shows right now, oops.)

Cooking: I recently made these super tasty Linzer Cookies for Christmas Eve and they were a hit. Recipe in link.

Eating: I have recently discovered the magic of  banana “ice cream”, has the consistency of frozen yogurt but healthier!


My recipe: 

  • 1 frozen banana
  • frozen yogurt (optional)
  • milk taste or consistency ( I use Coconut/Almond milk)
  • Chocolate syrup (optional)
  1. Blend all ingredients in a blender and occasionally add more milk depending on how you want it to taste or feel.
  2. Serve in bowl and garnish with toppings!

Loving: I am in love with White Barn‘s Winter candle, sold at Bath & Body Works. It smells like what a Texan would expect winter to smell like somewhere where it actually gets below 40 on a daily basis. (Sadly, our Texas winter has been as cold as 17 degrees and as warm as 78. TEXAS MAKE UP YOUR MIND!)

img_0956img_0984Dreaming: Not quite sure if this is supposed to be meant in a literal sense or more of a future sense, but whatever. I am dreaming of 2017 summer. I am going to Munich this summer on a mission trip, I am super excited, so please keep that in your prayers. However, there is one thing that I have been dreaming about for a while now- Hamilton tickets. I can see myself buying the Hamilton Chicago tickets and booking flights because ladies and gents I am going make this dream come true! Some how I will come up with the money, I just need a game plan.

Feeling: Ooh, this is a hard one; I have had such a variety of feelings lately. My family and I have recently been hit with major change. I  initially handled it better, I felt a lot of guilt & weariness but also happiness & gratefulness . I was drained and a little out of sorts, it was all so new. Now, I just have frustration and unsureness but I also have moments of love & joy. I am not quite sure what I think about the situation but all I know is that God gave us this because he knew we could do it and I have to trust in him. God has given me more joy, mercy, and grace through this than I usually have, which is such a blessing. Overall, I am unsure but I do know that he is preparing me for something further down the road and that I must trust him.

Listening: Same old, same old. I am still jammin’ out to Hamilton and Regina Spektor.

Celebrating: Well, this month I am celebrating rest and time with family. Like I stated previously, there has been a change in the Henry household, so I now cherish any moment of mother-daughter and father-daughter time I can attain. I also celebrate this new change and the joy it has brought to a certain little person, I celebrate that he is safe. I am also celebrating the birth of our Savior and the fact that he stooped so low, gave up all power, to become a vulnerable little baby. Pretty crazy that he loves us that much.

Going: Unfortunately, I am not going anywhere this December. 😦

Doing: Well, since I now have back the 9 hours I spend at school I have had plenty of free time. I tend to spend time with friends, watch movies/TV, go to fun places, shop, and overall just make the most of my break.

Well, that’s it for my December favorites. I will be posting probably agin in the next few days to reminisce on 2016, but until then Happy New Years!

 

Fall Favorites

hey friends! I haven’t done my favorites in a while, so I thought I would combine my favorite things with my favorite season! Honestly though, who doesn’t love Fall? Why wouldn’t you love Fall? Reasons to love Fall: cooler weather, pumpkins are in season, Thanksgiving, plaid, sweaters, apple cider, the list could go on…

Anyways, here are a few of my Fall Favorites:

Favorite Book: Where’d You Go, Bernadette   Ok, even though this book is a few years old, it’s one of the best I have read in a while. It’s quirky, funny, and takes place in Seattle/Antarctica how cool is that? Maria Semple did a wonderful job on this book!

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Favorite Movie: I think my favorite movie that has come to theaters this Fall has the be Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them . Although I am not a fan of the original Harry Potter series (go ahead and boo me), I thought this movie was really original and had great and interesting plot line. Plus Eddie Redmayne was in it, therefore I had to go see it!

Favorite TV Series: I am currently watching 10 TV shows (RIP me) but one of my favorites currently in Timeless on NBC. This show is about time travel; although I am not one for science fiction, Timeless is about history and I love history. Plus, all the period outfits are super cute! This show is easily engaging and leaves you hanging. (Other favorites I am currently watching: This is Us, Speechless, Call the Midwife, Downton Abbey, and Bones)

Favorite Song/Album: Ok, so this is kinda random but my favorite album currently is the Hamilton soundtrack. I am addicted. I listen to it non-stop (and if you have listened to the album then you may have just gotten my pun). It’s so good! Whats better than history and broadway combined? Nothing. You’ve got to listen to Hamilton asap. Plus, the Hamilton Mix tape is coming out soon with artists like: Regina Spektor (my favorite), Sia, Jimmy Fallon, The Roots, Usher, and more. (Other album to checkout is Remember Us to Life by Regina Spektor. It is greatness.)

Favorite Item of Clothing: My favorite clothing item currently is Old Navy’s Mid-Rise Rockstar Destructed Skinny Jeans . These curve hugging jeans can make any outfit look edgy and effortless.

Favorite Miscellaneous Item: I love Bath & Body Works Fall scents, especially the body mist. But, the best body mist scent this Fall was the Golden Pear & Brown Sugar. But alas, Bath & Body has already gotten rid of the beloved fall scents, so you can buy it on eBay in the link above.

Favorite Blog: My favorite blogs right now are Hope Engaged  and The College Prepster. I love both of these blogs and all of their content! Go read and follow both asap.

Favorite Picture:

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Dress:  Similar Here   Hat: Similar Black Fedora  Shoes: Sseko

Ok, I think that is it for all of my Fall favorites; mid-December I will post some Holiday Season favorites. I hope y’all will read, listen, watch, and wear some of my favorites.

 

Credits:

https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwirq_aCy8rQAhXHg1QKHZ4bAK0QjRwIBw&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.goodreads.com%2Fbook%2Fshow%2F13526165-where-d-you-go-bernadette&psig=AFQjCNEpEs71Pi_Wg3zpD1Sdz5ptWRFP3w&ust=1480392785527851

 

Thanks for…

Lord, thanks for sacrificing your Son so that I may be with you and for loving me unconditionally and always accepting me into your family.

Jesus, thanks for renewing my soul through your death, providing for me, and comforting me in times of joy and doubt.

Mom, thanks for carrying me for 9 mo., constantly putting up with my bad singing, loving me, and showing me how to be a God-fearing woman.

Dad, thanks for staying calm when I drive, always taking me out to go somewhere special, jamming with me, and always giving me good advice.

Sister, thanks for putting up with my sassy attitudes, bad jokes, and non-stop singing of Hamilton .

Friends, thanks for always making me laugh, cheering me up, spending time with me, singing with me, and allowing me to be myself.

DG leader, thanks for pouring into us, loving on us, and always being there for us.

Teachers, thank you for choosing to help me learn and for giving me and education, which is a privilege that many girls do not get.

I am thankful that I get to live in a free country.

I am thankful that my family & I are healthy.

I am thankful for a family that loves me.

I am thankful for an education.

I am thankful for friends that would do anything for me.

&

I am thankful for a God who loves me more than I will ever know. A God who took his perfect Son’s life so he could have mine. A God who defeated Satan’s wrath and has saved me. A God who created me and knew me before I was even conceived. A God who is real, yet in my time of doubt still pursues me. A God who is merciful, loving, and indescribable. A God who loves me for me.

 

 

And the adventure continues…

And just like that, summer is officially over. Let the new school year begin!

As this school year begins, I was reminded with a few words of wisdom, coming from Ephesians 6:10-18. Paul is reminding us to put on the armor of God so we may stand up against evil. This is such crucial advice, if we don’t wear the armor of God we can easily be pulled into the lies of Satan, we will become so vulnerable to evil and the dark of this world. God provides this armor so we may protect our selves against Satan and so we may stand firm with Jesus, even after the battle.

So, as we go into this school year, we must remember to put on the armor of God and equip ourselves with the Word to stand firm in our faith.

“…be strong in the Lord and his mighty power.” – Ephesians 6:10


Also, I recently discovered this amazing organization called Tiny Hands (I was told about them from the Hope Engaged blog, which is by far one of my favorite blogs!!!). Tiny Hands really focuses on preventing human trafficking and trafficking because of poverty. I have really felt a calling to go to India and Nepal, which is where Tiny Hands is located. Through programs, they have prevented thousands girls from being trafficked and have helped many children, who were abandoned, find loving homes. Their work is absolutely amazing and I ask that you go check out their website and keep these staff members and girls in your prayers.

 

Colorado// Summer 2016

Hi friends! I lied, I am going to make one post about Colorado instead of several small ones. OK, so the next day we visited Breckenridge, which was a little touristy but totally cute! I love quaint little towns, and Breckenridge fit right into that category. My family and I walked around venturing inside all of the unique little shops. Later that night, we went to Boondocks  in Denver and played Mini Golf!

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Home of the Buffalos!

The next morning, we woke up early and headed into Boulder to tour Colorado University. Colorado University was a beautiful campus, they had these little gardens everywhere that were just stunning! There was this one garden, called the Shakespeare Garden, and all of his plays had their own little garden space with the plants mentioned in his plays in the gardens. I was so neat! After touring, we walked around downtown Boulder and ate at Pasta Jays, let me just say, it was some mean pasta! Shortly after, we left to go to our rented condo in Winter Park.

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Home of the Buffalos!

Monday & Tuesday kinda consisted of similar things, we mostly stayed in Winter Park and my extended family met us there. Monday we hiked up Winter Park’s main ski mountain, so to speak. Tuesday, we did all the fun outdoor activities Winter park offers in the summer, i.e. alpine slides, bungee trampolines, mini golf, rock climbing and much more, these activites were lots of fun and I recommend them to anyone who goes to Winter Park in the summer. Finally, on Wednesday, we went down to Grand Lake, Colorado. There we hiked to Adam’s Falls which was a natural waterfall and stream due to snow melt, we hung around in the stream for a while dipping our feet into the freezing water. We the went to Grand Lake’s beach front and went kayaking and paddle boarding one the lake, it was so much fun!

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All this to say that this short vacay was worth it! It was so nice to be with family and get to relax, Colorado, you are one for the books.