Tuesday, December 25, 2012

and unto us is born this day.

Go tell it on the mountain
Over the hills and everywhere
Go tell it on the mountain 
That Jesus Christ is born! 

Christmas is my favorite day of the entire year. 

My family always winds up in the same house, regardless of where life has taken us. The hour we rise has gotten a little later as we've grown older. Coffee comes first now... even before presents. There isn't an insane dash to rip the paper off as quickly as possible. It takes over an hour. It's less about me and more about all of us doing this together. It is as if we've finally discovered that this holiday isn't about the individual, it's about us being together. I love that. 

Today is really about Jesus. He's here and He came to be with us, in our form. He did so that we wouldn't be afraid of Him, but so that we could relate. Isn't that beautiful and awesome? 

I hope today is wonderful for you. I hope that you have the perfect Christmas that you want and hope for. But if your Christmas isn't perfect - if your family gets in an argument or you're grieving or life is just hard, remember that Jesus came for all of us, in the situation that we are currently in. He didn't expect us to be perfect. If you're Christmas is more black than white, it's still Christmas. Thank God for that! 

Fragile fingers sent to heal us
Tender brow prepared for thorn
Tiny heart whose blood will save us
Unto us is born
Unto us is born

So wrap our injured flesh around You
Breathe our air and walk our sod
Rob our sin and make us holy
Perfect Son of God
Perfect Son of God
Welcome to our world

Friday, December 21, 2012

things I love: Christmas edition.

1. Christmas trees.

This is the first year that I've had a real Christmas tree and I love it. My house smells delicious. I took several hours decorating it, placing ornaments carefully and making sure that there weren't any holes. I think it turned out pretty well, if I do say so myself.

2. Wrapping presents. 

There is nothing more satisfying than finding the perfect gift for someone, coming home, wrapping it immediately, and placing that bad boy under the tree. Also, it's December 21st and I've been done with my shopping for several days! Every year, I pick a theme for my wrapping and this year has to be one of my favorites!

3. Warm socks. 

I'm a sock person. There's nothing more wonderful than putting on a new pair of socks. For most of the year, the only time I wear socks is when I'm working out, but during the winter I have so many more opportunities to wear socks. This year, I made a decision to wear cute socks! Don't you think they're cute? 

4.  Handwriting my Christmas cards. 

I have found no greater pleasure than sitting down and handwriting Christmas cards to the people that I love. Writing notes has always been something that I have enjoyed, but it seems to be even more special this time of year.

What are your favorite things during this season?

Ornaments: Macy's, Pier 1 Imports, Hot Pink
Tree topper sprays: Hot Pink
Garland: Pier 1 Imports
Wrapping paper, ribbon, and baker's twine: Paper Source
Socks: J. Crew
Christmas cards: Paper Source

Thursday, December 20, 2012

work that body.

Have you ever had a moment where you just NEEDED to exercise? 

That's a weird question, I know, but I had a moment like that last night. I was driving home from dinner with my family and my head started spinning -- work, work, work, wrapping up my job, thinking about student teaching, Christmas shopping, blah, blah, blah... I knew what I needed to do. I needed to run. 

Running is a new thing for me. For once in my life, I'm actually beginning to enjoy it. I've tried it several times throughout the years and it never clicked. A few months ago, it clicked and I don't dread running anymore. Tonight I needed to clear my head and that's exactly what happened! 

Sometimes, I don't need to run. I need to walk in my living room, roll out my yoga mat, and stretch. I need to twist my body and release the tension that has built up inside my joints. Yoga is cathartic and works wonders when I need to let go of outside worries and focus on the simple things. 

With Christmas just around the corner, I bet some of you are still looking for last minute gifts. If you have an exerciser on your list, here are some suggestions: 

Do you have a kind of exercise that is your go-to for free therapy? Share your favorites with me!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

pop of color.

I love nail polish. Unfortunately for my bank account, I am one of those people who feels pretty much naked when my nails are bare. For many years, my favorite brand of polish has been Essie. I tend to stick with neutrals on my fingers and bright pinks and reds on my toes, but occasionally I'll go out of my comfort zones and pick something wild. Here are some of my favorite shades:

Beyond Cozy - "a decadent silvery gold glitter" 
a great holiday shade - PERFECT for New Years Eve

Don't Sweater It - "a warm, cozy and creamy mauve"
my go-to neutral for winter

Fiesta - "a shock of creamy hot pink"
usually reserved for summer toes, but works great for a pop with a dark winter outfit

Lollipop - "candy cane red"
says it right there in the name!

Mademoiselle - "the most classic grown-up pink"
my go-to shade all year long when I can't make up my mind

Mint Candy Apple - "creme de menthe mint"
put it with just about anything

Power Clutch - "a striking, deep gray-green"
for when you want to feel fierce

Skirting the Issue - "an exquisite, fashionable burgundy wine"
perfect in peep-toes

Where's My Chauffeur? - "an opulent turquoise" 
a new shade this winter

What's your favorite brand and shade? Any go-tos when you can't make up your mind?