Lessons From Loneliness on Unveiled Wife

Yesterday I had the privilege of guest posting on one of my favorite marriage blogs, Unveiled Wife. Here’s just a snippet: 

“I’m so alone.”
Tears stung my eyes, and two drops escaped. I wiped them away, but they fell even faster.
Did that thought ever cross your mind after your marriage?
Did you ever feel alone, abandoned? 

I went from full classes, hallways, lecture halls, football games, Bible studies twice a week, bustling cafeterias, one on one discipling, college ministry, weekly activities, coffee dates, and hanging out with friends, all in addition to weekly church services… to online classes, knowing one family in the entire city, and once a week church services. I went from being immersed in community to near isolation.

Read the rest at Unveiled Wife! Happy Friday!

Waxing Poetic Wednesday: Edgar Allen Poe

Annabel Lee

It was many and many a year ago,
In a kingdom by the sea,
That a maiden there lived whom you may know
By the name of ANNABEL LEE;
And this maiden she lived with no other thought
Than to love and be loved by me.

I was a child and she was a child,
In this kingdom by the sea;
But we loved with a love that was more than love-
I and my Annabel Lee;
With a love that the winged seraphs of heaven
Coveted her and me.

And this was the reason that, long ago,
In this kingdom by the sea,
A wind blew out of a cloud, chilling
My beautiful Annabel Lee;
So that her highborn kinsman came
And bore her away from me,
To shut her up in a sepulchre
In this kingdom by the sea.

The angels, not half so happy in heaven,
Went envying her and me-
Yes!- that was the reason (as all men know,
In this kingdom by the sea)
That the wind came out of the cloud by night,
Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee.

But our love it was stronger by far than the love
Of those who were older than we-
Of many far wiser than we-
And neither the angels in heaven above,
Nor the demons down under the sea,
Can ever dissever my soul from the soul
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee.

For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;
And the stars never rise but I feel the bright eyes
Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;
And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side
Of my darling- my darling- my life and my bride,
In the sepulchre there by the sea,
In her tomb by the sounding sea.

Edgar Allan Poe

Every Wednesday, I indulge my English Lit minor by sharing an inspirational poem. Share your favorite poem, it could end up on a future Waxing Poetic Wednesday.

What Then Shall We Say To These Things

I’m happy to introduce Osayi Osar-Emokpae, our guest blogger today. When I first read this a few weeks ago, I almost cried. “How could she read my mind and know exactly what I was worrying about?!” God works in amazing ways. I hope this blesses each of you as much as it did me!

So many times I find myself worrying about what could happen. I’m worried about bad decisions I made, the good decisions I didn’t make, and everything in between.

I’m worried about the bills I need to pay, the friends I wish lived closer, the places I wish I could visit.

I’m worried about my past, my present, my future. Will I make a difference? Will I ever find my purpose? Will I ever accomplish all the things God wants me to accomplish?

I’m worried about the changes that seem to be happening beyond my control, about all the time I’ve wasted, and how time seems to be moving so slowly one second, and then moving at lightning-fast speed the next second.

But I’ve been reminded lately about the verse:

What then shall we say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us. 

(Romans 8:31)

So when the voices rise up, and I begin to worry about things, I know that it’s time for me to start saying things back. When the voice of worry tells me that I’m a failure and that I’ll always be a failure, I know it’s time to start speaking back. When the voice of worry reminds me of all my past mistakes, and lost opportunities, I know that I can respond boldly.

“Since God is for me, NOTHING can succeed against me.” 

How about you? How do you respond when you start to worry?

Osayi Osar-Emokpae is the author
of Impossible is Stupid (http://impossibleisstupid.com)
a book that encourages Christians singles to thrive. She can be reached at her
blog http://iyasostuff.com

Weekend Inspiration: British Accent

A royal wedding, a Diamond Jubilee, AND the Olympics! I’ve always been an anglophile (lover of British culture) so I’ve been loving all the British wonderfullness all over the internet. Here’s a royal collection of images, decor, and links to inspire you to add a British accent to your style or home!

Source: weheartit.com via Maja on Pinterest

Source: goo.gl via Celinda on Pinterest

Lake District, England

British Style: This is pretty much amazing!

British Food: Tea and sandwiches!

British Decor:

Check out the how-to video tutorial for this headboard at The Plumed Nest.

See the amazing transformation of this table at Kayboo Creations.

This new collection from DaySpring uses a twist on the famous Churchill quote, “Keep Calm and Carry On.”

Check out the whole collection here:

And get inspired to cozy up with a cup of Earl Grey tea after visiting the Orchard Road Knits and Stitches Shop for hand-knit and sewn pillows, tea cozies, and more, all made in England by my blog friend Nikki

I hope you’re inspired to add a “colourful” accent to your life! Even if it’s just adding an extra vowel to some of your words 🙂

 Cheerio!

Waxing Poetic Wednesday: e.e. cummings

Every Wednesday, I indulge my English Lit minor by sharing an inspirational poem. Share your favorite poem, it could end up on a future Waxing Poetic Wednesday. Be inspired!

Source: etsy.com via Emily on Pinterest

i thank you God for most this amazing

i thank You God for most this amazing
day:for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun’s birthday; this is the birth
day of life and of love and wings: and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any–lifted from the no
of all nothing–human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)

e.e. cummings

Tutorial: Button Daisy Headband

Because my BFF’s upcoming wedding flower is a daisy and the colors are yellow, black and white, I was inspired to make myself this button daisy headband. It might be too casual or the wedding, but it will be cute for the bachelorette party or rehearsal dinner! Here’s how you can easily make one for yourself:
1. Cut six pieces of ribbon, 2 inches long each. 
2. Fold each piece in half and sew the ends together to make a loop. Now you have six petals. 
3. Sew the petals together, starting with two or three, and adding each petal at an angle to great a flower shape.
4. Sew a yellow button in the center. 
5. Attach the flower to an elastic headband by sewing under the button, carrying the thread over the elastic, and going back up under the button. Secure with a knot. I don’t recommend trying to sew through the elastic, it’s really hard to get a needle through, and I think it ruins the elastic. Plus, this way you can snip the threads on the back if you ever want to replace the daisy with something else!
6. Voila!
All that remains is deciding how to wear it, normally, or hipster style:
Me looking normal, and my hipster face. Yeah, I’m cool like that.

This headband is super quick (less than an hour) and easy to make, so it’s a great project for someone just beginning to sew. I think it would also be really cute for a baby or little girl’s headband. Hm, maybe  for the flowergirls? I might run that past the bride. 

I’ve also been making ribbon flowers like this one: 
If the daisy is level super easy, this is level extremely difficult. But, for those of you adventurous stitchers, I’m working on a tutorial. 
In other news, TODAY I’m officially accepting blog sponsors! Yay!
Honestly, I’ve been wrestling with when to start offering sponsorship opportunities for some time, and here’s why. Scribbles is a relatively small blog in terms of followers, although I do get a lot of traffic. You could buy an ad on a bigger blog for the same price. I know that. 
BUT. I really, really, really want this blog to make a difference. There are many, many wonderful charities, organizations, and non-profits I so want to support financially, but it’s a sacrifice to support the ones Brian and I are already committed to (it’s totally worth it :)).
Plus, I want to use this blog to motivate others to make a difference. That’s why I’ve decided to seek blog sponsors; 20% of each ad bought will be donated to a wonderful cause, starting with Food For the Hungry. I’ve written about them before here. In the future, I’d like to support Compassion International, and Love 146
If you are interested in an ad for your blog, business, or non-profit, you’ll find out all you need to know on the shiny new Sponsor page, and if you have any questions, email me! (ejconley(at)hotmail(dot)com. 
Happy Monday!

Sharing this with the following:

Making Monday Marvelous

Inspiration: Yellow Summer Wedding

For the first time ever, I’m linking up to Gussy Sew’s Inspiration Workshop. I was SO excited when I got the prompt: Yellow. It just so happens that the colors for my BFF’s wedding in August are yellow and black and white stripes! The wedding flower is the daisy. It’s going to be outdoors on the lawn of a lovely romantic Victorian home, with the reception inside.

Yellow is such a sunny, cheery, joyful color, it’s perfect for a summer wedding!

I’ve made numerous collages to gather ideas for the wedding already, so I thought I’d share some of my recent ones.

The above collage is from Style Me Pretty. I’m trying to gather some ideas for my bridesmaid hair and accessories.

The above collage led to the black and white stripes decision. It’s so classy with yellow.

More ideas for my hair, and some other awesome yellow wedding ideas.

For more yellow inspiration, check out the Inspiration Workshop!

Gussy Sews Inspiration Workshop!

Waxing Poetic Wednesday: Emily Dickinson

Lately, I’ve felt the urge to indulge my English literature minor by sharing one of my loves: poetry. I’m especially fond of Victorian era poetry, and today’s poet-ess is one of my favorites, and not just because we share the same first name :). As long as I can find poetic inspiration, this feature will continue every Wednesday from now on. Share your favorite poem in the comments, it could end up on a future Waxing Poetic Wednesday!

Part One: Life

XXXII

HOPE is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,
  
And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.
  
I ’ve heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.

Beauty Begins With God

What does it look like to find beauty in everyday?

I’ve been asking myself that question a lot lately. That’s what this blog is technically about, but what does “finding beauty” really look like in every day life?

Asking myself that question led me to question my blog’s design, purpose, focus, and even the name. What is this blog really “About”?

When I chose the subtitle on March 28th, 2011, I wrote:

Ever since I got serious about blogging last summer, I have struggled to come up with a tag line, a pitch, a subtitle type phrase for this blog. I write about a such wide variety of things. This blog has changed from being a place for me to keep a record of events and keep up with my family, to a place to meet new friends, learn, grow, encourage, and reach out to make a difference. But I still write about my goings-ons and share craft projects and the occasional recipe.

For awhile I came up with “Encouraging and challenging women to fulfill God’s purpose for their lives.” It’s a good purpose, but I didn’t feel like it fit with everything I posted, and it was really long, and hard to fit on the header.

This tag line came to me as I was reading One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. I wish I could quote to you the exact moment when I it came to me, but I’m letting my sister borrow the book right now so I don’t have it handy. However, Captivating: Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman’s Soul by John and Staci Eldredge discusses at length why beauty matters. Beauty speaks to us about who God is. Beauty says all will be well and gives our souls rest. Beauty invites, captures, and draws the viewer in. God has given us a desire for beauty, because He is beautiful. Beauty comforts and beauty inspires.

But in a life filled with difficult, hard, painful, and ugly things, we have to find beauty. We have to look for it intentionally. Where? In everyday. In the midst of the stress, the pain, the loneliness, the joys, and the blessings.


Beauty matters because it points us directly to the Author of beauty. 

We can “find” beauty by looking around us and being truly grateful for all the gifts from the Author of beauty.

But on some level, the Author of beauty has imprinted each of us with His image, so that we too long to create beauty. 

When DaySpring sent me the Outdoor Chalk Board and Outdoor Metal Yard Sign to review, I knew it was no coincidence. The yard sign states the simple message: “Everything Beautiful Begins With God,” and the reference Ecclesiastes 3:11. I chose that verse as the theme verse for this blog back in March 2011.

He has made everything beautiful in it’s time. He has also set eternity in the human heart, yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. 

Kopek loves to get in on pictures
There’s a connection between eternity and beauty in that verse. I think the connection is that there’s something in us that’s made for beauty, made to appreciate beauty, made to want to create beauty.

When beauty becomes in idol, it becomes ugly.

But when we long for beauty, maybe we’re really longing for the Author, God. 

“Every experience of beauty points to eternity.”

       -Hans Urs Von Balthasar 

As far as beauty relates to this blog, I’ve crafted a more defined purpose statement:

Scribbles From Emily is a faith, lifestyle, and creative inspiration blog. I believe in making life beautiful, changing the world for the better, and celebrating everyday. That’s what I seek to encourage through craft tutorials, decor ideas, style tips, spiritual encouragement, and more.

 I want to inspire every reader to create beauty in their own way. I’ll share crafts, decor, and once in a while, style posts, but that certainly doesn’t exhaust what beauty looks like in everyday life. So, I’ll also share inspiration posts with lovely images, themes, and lots of links to inspire your way of creating beauty.

Along those lines, starting this Wednesday I’m going to have a new weekly feature here. To reconnect with my English Literature education, every Wednesday I’ll share a poem. In my signature cheesy style, I’m calling it “Waxing Poetic Wednesday.” We can all drink tea and read poetry and be inspired. 😀

I’m starting with my very favorite poems of all time, any guesses? The first poet’s initials are E.D.

And if you’re looking to add a little beauty to your yard decor, you’ll want to click on that button above to see the entire Redeemed outdoor collection. And you’ll also want to use this code for 25% off: JOY2012

I’ll continue to explore and share what finding beauty looks like in everyday life, but I’d really like to know, what does it look like in your life? How do you find beauty in your everyday days? 


DaySpring provided me the with the chalkboard and yard sign free of charge for my review, but my opinion is my own 🙂