September Goals

september goals

September is here! Schools are back in session, football season has begun, and hopefully the weather will catch up and start to cool down here in NC. This month is going to be a very fun one — I am going to Disney World next week on a family vacation with my in-laws, celebrating my 29th birthday (eeks) and launching back into a school year of new schedules and routines.

September Goals

  • Figure out a system to digitally and automatically save my iPhone photos on a regular basis
  • Start small group back up again!
  • Clean and organize my house for house-guests in October
  • Buy curtains for the dining room
  • Continue to train for the half marathon, getting up to 9 miles
  • Celebrate my 29th birthday, and update my 30 before 30 list
  • Give this blog a refresh (FYI the site was down yesterday due to a bug so the design is all off and wonky. Hoping to get a new design in soon!)
  • Blog our house tour, one year later

 

PS – See my monthly goals from September 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010 and 2009.

TGIF Link Love / 1.

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It’s Friday! Before a long weekend! Woohoo!

I decided to start a new Friday series as a way to share links and stories that I find interesting across the web. This concept is hardly new in the blogsophere and I may not post every Friday (gotta keep expectations low!), but I’d like to at least start it as a way to share posts from real friends, blog friends and news around the web.

Some link love from this week…

What have you been reading lately?
What are you up to this weekend?
Hope you have a great one. :) 

Current Crush: Minted.com Art

I first heard about Minted.com a couple of years ago when I ordered Christmas cards from there (see our cards from 2013 and 2012). It is one of my favorite stationery and custom card sites; all of their designs are modern, lovely and affordable.

In the last couple of years they have expanded from a card company to an art shop. Art can really transform a room, and I love browsing for beautiful new pieces and dreaming up where I would put them in my home. I somehow got on their mailing list and received their catalog last week, and found myself reading it like it was a magazine. (Does that mean I’m getting older, or are marketers just getting smarter?)

Minted.com Catalog Minted.com Catalog Minted.com Catalog Minted.com Catalog

Here are some pretty pieces I am eyeing….Nice Work by Heather Francisco

Nice Work by Heather Francisco — This is a great print for an office, and comes in five different colors. Maybe it needs to go on my bookcase at work?

Rusty Patina by Artsy Canvas Girl Designs

Rusty Patina by Artsy Canvas Girl Designs — Prettiest colors. I wonder if I could paint something like this….

Seaside by Alexandra Nazari

Seaside by Alexandra Nazari — I have seen a lot of large ocean and beach prints across Pinterest and blogs. They are so calming and happy. I could see this one blown up and hung above a linen couch.

Big Sur by Lindsay Megahed

Big Sur by Lindsay Megahed — Another beachy print. I am a little obsessed with the brush strokes for the waves.

Peonies in Vase by Kelli Hall

Peonies in Vase by Kelli Hall — I think this one would look gorgeous in my master bedroom!

Three Oaks Barn by LeeAnn Dougherty

Three Oaks Barn by LeeAnn Dougherty — I love rustic, country barns. I could see this blown up and hung above a guest bed, or a nice addition to a gallery wall.

Which one is your favorite?
Do you have a favorite site to browse new art?  

PS – See more art that I am eyeing on my art + prints Pinterest board.

FYI this post contains affiliate links, which means if you click and purchase I will receive a small commission. Thank you for reading and supporting My Pretty Pennies!

On Contentment

I took an unintentional week off of blogging, due to a terrible, no good, really bad week. We have been dealing with a few health issues, broken computers, broken air conditioning [the upstairs thermostat read 90-degrees one night], and overall crummy circumstances.

In the middle of the week, as I was running late for work and bathing Leia because she happen to roll in poop that morning (oh yeah, that happened too), I started to think about Paul and his little secrets.

I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. – Philippians 4:12

Uhhhh… HOW Paul?!? How in the world do you remain content when you are in want? When you are hungry? My body is naturally always unhappy when I am hungry because it needs sustenance. How can your circumstances really not effect your content-ness?

He answers it in the next verse:

I can do all things through him who gives me strength. – Philippians 4:13

Ah. Well there is the most over-used and inappropriately misinterpreted verse in the Bible.

Sometimes when I’ve heard a verse so many times, it loses its power. I can do all things through him who gives me strength. Yeah, yeah. He can help me. I pray a “get me out of this mess” prayer and ask for that supernatural strength to change my circumstances.

But last week, I stopped and thought about what it would look like to practice contentment when your circumstances don’t change and are still very much annoying.

Through him who gives me strength. 

The one who gives us strength is the Holy Spirit, and there are two major things that the Holy Spirit does:

1. Points you to the cross.
2. Enables you to love others.

When Jesus summarized the law into two statements — love God and love others — it wasn’t just a way to justify, it is the only way to set us free. The more I focus on the cross and what it represents, the less important my cares seem. It reminded me of the lines of this old hymn:

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.

And the more I look around at the needs of others, the more petty my problems seem.

As some of you may remember, my best friend’s baby died earlier this year. He would have been six months this past Saturday, and oh how I wish I could see what he looks like at six months! To honor his life, his beautiful parents encouraged people to participate in doing random acts of kindness on the 23rd of each month. My “bad week” seemed so insignificant in light of Owen’s life and death, and it was pure joy to find ways to spread love and kindness in his honor. I was moved to tears seeing all of the ways people celebrated his life.

Love God, and love others. That’s the secret of contentment.

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