Fun, free encouragement postcards!

Fun FREE encouragement postcards 2 | Misselainious blog Fun FREE encouragement postcards | Misselainious blogHello friends, as you probably know by now one of my favorite things in life is to encourage people.  There are so many great things that come from giving encouragement.  A) You make someone’s day better B) You get more joy yourself and C) it’s free! (or in this case only a few cents for the stamp). :)  I’ve made up some fun and FREE encouragement postcards for you to brighten someone’s inbox with.

Don’t you love getting mail?  I know I do! It always makes my day better to receive a little note at my door.  Sometimes though I get stuck in a rut and don’t send anything for far too long because in my head it’s always going to take longer than it actually does.  But a postcard takes even less time!  Plus postcards just remind me of summer.  You don’t have to be on a trip to send one!

These fun encouragement postcards have simple sayings like, “Hugs & Besos (kisses)” or “You are my luce del sole (sunshine)”.  There’s also one that says, “Cheering you on.”

So friends I hope you’ll take second and print one or four of these out, write a little note, and stick it in the mail for someone you want to encourage.  If this isn’t on your summer fun to do list then it should be!  You can get these cheerful postcards here. :)  And if you’re already part of the encouragement crew I’ll send you the link on Wednesday!

(Just as a side note you’ll want to make sure you use card stock to print on and once you’ve printed the front of the postcard you’ll need to flip it over and stick it back through the printer to make them double sided.)

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Posted on August 22, 2016 by | Comments { 0 }

Quotes!

Great necessities call out great virtues. ~Abigail Adams quote

“Our heads may be small, but they are full of memories as the sky may sometimes be full of swarming bees, thousands and thousands of memories, of smells, of places, of little things that happened to us and which come back, unexpectedly, to remind us who we are.” ~ Alexander McCall Smith

“I never could have done what I have done without the habits of punctuality, order, and diligence, without the determination to concentrate myself on one subject at a time.” ~ Charles Dickens

“Creativity takes courage.” ~ Henri Matisse

“Our prayers can go where we cannot…there are no borders, no prison walls, no doors that are closed to us when we pray.” ~ Brother Andrew

“If I have ever made any valuable discoveries, it has been owing more to patient attention, than to any other talent.” ~ Isaac newton

“If you do one good deed your reward usually is to be set to do another and harder and better one.” ~ C.S. Lewis (The Horse and His Boy)

“Do you wish me a good morning, or mean that it is a good morning whether I want it or not; or that you feel good this morning; or that it is a morning to be good on?” ~ J.R.R. Tolkien (The Hobbit)

P.S.  Hey friend, want more encouragement in your life?  I’ve started a Dear Wednesday encouragement crew and if you’d like to be a part of it (and not miss out on the Wednesday post!) make sure to leave your email below or sign up here!  I’m excited to send you mail on Wednesday!

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Posted on August 19, 2016 by | Comments { 0 }

Running away

Running away | Misselainious blogYou know how you can read something over and over and enjoy it but then you read it later and something sticks out like blaring neon lights?  Well that happened to me last week when I was reading in Jonah.  It may only be four chapters but there’s a lot there.

God tells Jonah to go to Nineveh. Jonah instead gets on a boat going the other direction.  It’s rather comical if you think about it because while we try to run, God is everywhere so we can’t really ever get away from Him.  Jonah is essentially saying, “I’d rather go anywhere but there even if it means I run as fast and hard from your presence as I can.”

I have to admit I’m a lot like Jonah.  God tells me things and sometimes it sounds unpleasant or I’m just being stubborn and I don’t want to do it.  I run but when we disobey God we are the ones that loose.  We miss out on the presence of the God of the universe and the very One who is love Himself.

Jonah tries to change the outcome of the story God is writing but thankfully he can’t.  You see God wants to make His love known to people that are running as fast as they can from Him.  He’s a God of mercy and grace.  He has a plan to rescue 120,000 people in Nineveh.  Yet Jonah runs.

Here’s what struck me this time.  Not only does Jonah end up going to Nineveh and rescuing thousands of people (because he gets swallowed by a huge fish and repents) but the people on the boat Jonah is fleeing in see the awesome power of God.  “So they picked up Jonah and hurled him into the sea, and the sea ceased from its raging.  Then the men feared the LORD exceedingly, and they offered a sacrifice to the LORD and made vows.” (Jonah 1:15-16 ESV)

God saw those men on the boat and he cared about them.  If Jonah had obeyed they wouldn’t have seen God show up like He did.  They wouldn’t have had an encounter with the living God.

Here’s what I think we need to hear.  We need to hear that our mistakes, running, and yes, even sin, is being worked for good if we’re in Christ.  “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28 ESV)  Did you read that?  ALL things.  Not just some things but all things work together for good for those that love Christ Jesus.

Jonah straight up sins and runs from God (and he should and does repent), even so we get a glimpse of something amazing.  Jonah was in the belly of a huge fish for three days and nights.  He got buried but God brought him back to accomplish the work he had for Jonah.  He rescued Jonah from running so that a whole city could find mercy.  Hundreds of years later Jesus would choose not to run.  He stayed so that we could stop racing away from God’s presence.  You see Jesus was buried in a tomb for three days so that we don’t have to run from God anymore.  Jesus was in the belly of the earth for three days so that all things will work together for our good in Christ Jesus.

You haven’t gone too deep or run too far for God’s love and grace to reach you.  God displays his glory and mercy even through our mistakes.

P.S.  Hey friend, want more encouragement in your life?  I’ve started a Dear Wednesday encouragement crew and if you’d like to be a part of it (and not miss out on the Wednesday post!) make sure to leave your email below or sign up here!  I’m excited to send you mail on Wednesday!

{Photo by: Paige Whiting}

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Posted on August 15, 2016 by | Comments { 2 }

Quotes!

One sees great things from the valley; only small things from the peak. Gilbert K. Chesterton“Places had echoes- and if one were sensitive, one might just pick up some resonance from the past, some felling for what had happened.” ~ Alexander McCall Smith

“Piglet noticed that even though he had a Very Small Heart, it could hold a rather large amount of Gratitude.” ~ A.A. Milne (Winnie-the-Pooh)

“What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.” ~ Jane Goodall

“It is not the strength of your faith but the object of your faith that actually saves you.” ~ Timothy Keller

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” ~ Anne Frank

“When one does a thing, it appears good, otherwise one would not write it.  Only later comes reflection, and one discards or accepts the thing.  Time is the best censor, and patience a most excellent teacher.” ~ Frédéric Chopin

“Often times we feel like either we can’t make a world of difference, or we feel that it’s not going to change anything anyway.  The truth is you can change someone’s day, you can change someone’s life, but you have to show up and do what you got to do to actually see any fruit coming from it.” ~ Nick Vujicic

P.S.  Hey friend, want more encouragement in your life?  I’ve started a Dear Wednesday encouragement crew and if you’d like to be a part of it (and not miss out on the Wednesday post!) make sure to leave your email below or sign up here!  I’m excited to send you mail on Wednesday!

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Posted on August 12, 2016 by | Comments { 0 }

Quotes!

Mexican Proverb

“Pretty much all the honest truth-telling there is in the world is done by children.” ~ Oliver Wendell Holmes

“He said, ‘You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.” Margery Williams, The Velveteen Rabbit

“For a seed to achieve its greatest expression, it must come completely undone.  The shell cracks, its insides come out and everything changes.  To someone who doesn’t understand growth, it would like like complete destruction.” ~ Cynthia Occelli

“Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.” ~ William Wordsworth

“When His purposes are more important than your desires, when His glory is more valuable to you than your temporary moments of glory, and when His agenda activates you more than your plan for you, you will be freed from your bondage to self-love and be freed to love others.” ~ Paul Tripp

“Cupcakes are muffins that believed in miracles.” (Haha I found this one on pinterest and it made me laugh… 😉 )

P.S.  Hey friend, want more encouragement in your life?  I’ve started a Dear Wednesday encouragement crew and if you’d like to be a part of it (and not miss out on the Wednesday post!) make sure to leave your email below or sign up here!  I’m excited to send you mail on Wednesday!

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Posted on August 5, 2016 by | Comments { 0 }

What is in your hands?

What do you have in your hands? | Misselainious blogSometimes it can feel like we have no resources. Sometimes it can feel like we don’t have enough to do this, that, or the other thing. Sometimes we don’t know what’s in our hand. Do you ever feel this way? Do you ever just wish someone would lend you a hand? Well I have some good news for you today my friend!

This past month I’ve been reading in Exodus and I’ve discovered some things that have made me stop and wonder. No, not the plagues. I’m talking about the part where God calls Moses. This time as I read through a few things came to light that have really encouraged and challenged me.

Moses is out tending some sheep. He’s just minding his own business when God calls him to do something pretty crazy. God wants Moses to lead His people out of slavery. If that isn’t a job upgrade I don’t know what is. Moses is terrified and I can’t say I blame him. He didn’t yet recognize who God is and how God enables people.

So how does God enable us? “Then Moses answered, ‘But behold, they will not believe me or listen to my voice for they will say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you.’ The Lord said to him, ‘What is that in your hand?’ He said, ‘A staff.’ And he said, ‘Throw it on the ground, and it became a serpent, and Moses ran from it.’” (Exodus 4:1-3)

I am learning that God often enables us with the thing we already have in our hands. A lot of times we miss it because it looks so ordinary. It looks like a shepherd’s staff, just a stick. It looks like our current job, family, relationships, hobbies…even limitations. The everyday things are what we hold in our hands. Maybe we’ve gotten stuck in moving forward because all we see is that we’re holding an ordinary stick. It is an ordinary stick but here’s where we begin to recognize who God is.

God takes what is in our hands and he does something amazing with it when we are willing to listen to him and surrender it before him. Moses had to throw it down before the Lord. It changed into something he wasn’t expecting, a snake. And Moses ran from it. Are you scared of what the Lord might show you? God then tells Moses to pick it back up and the snake returns to a staff.

See the thing is, God enabled the staff to change. God is always at work to enable us to use the ordinary things for His glory. He wants us to partner with him in the big things he’s doing just by being faithful with what we have.

“What has God given you? Moses had a stick, David had a slingshot, and Paul had a pen. Mother Teresa possessed a love for the poor; Billy Graham, a gift for preaching; and Joni Eareckson Tada, a disability. What did they have in common? A willingness to let God use whatever they had, even when it didn’t seem very useful. If you will assess what you have to offer in terms of your time, your treasure, and your talents, you will have a better understanding of how you might uniquely serve.” ~ Richard Stearns

My friends it gets better though. You see before we get to the verses in chapter four about Moses’ hand we learn about God’s hand. “But I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless compelled by a mighty hand.” (Exodus 3:19) God is telling us His hand will do the work. His hand will bring us freedom. His hand will accomplish great things. Many years later He’d show us again what was in His hand with His Son Jesus.

You know what Jesus had in his hands? Jesus had nails in his hands. He had nails so that we don’t have to be afraid. He had nails so that we can be healed. He had nails so that we can have resources. He had nails so that we can have help and hope. He had nails in his hands so that I can raise my hands in surrender and worship and live free. Because of what he took in his hands we can offer back to him what is in ours so that he might use it in incredible ways. What is in your hands today friends? If God can use an ordinary stick or some nails he can use what you have too.

“Oh sing to the LORD a new song, for he has done marvelous things! His right hand and his holy arm have worked salvation for him. The LORD has made known his salvation; he has revealed his righteousness in the sight of the nations.” (Psalm 98:1-2)

P.S.  Hey friend, want more encouragement in your life?  I’ve started a Dear Wednesday encouragement crew and if you’d like to be a part of it (and not miss out on the Wednesday post!) make sure to leave your email below or sign up here!  I’m excited to send you mail on Wednesday!

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Posted on August 1, 2016 by | Comments { 4 }

Quotes!

Leonardo da vinci quote“There are dark shadows on the earth, but its lights are stronger in the contrast.” ~ Charles Dickens

“Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.” ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

“We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.” ~ Walt Disney

“Things present themselves to you, and it’s how you choose to deal with them that reveals who you are.  We all say a lot of things, don’t we, about who we are and how we think.  But in the end it’s your actions, how you respond to circumstance that reveals your character.” ~ Cate Blanchett

“Why would we fear the shifting sands of culture when our God is the Rock of ages?” ~ Jen Wilkin

“Today is your big moment. Moments, really.  The life you’ve been waiting for is happening all around you.  The scene unfolding right outside your window is worth more than the most beautiful painting, and the crackers and peanut butter that you’re having for lunch on the coffee table are as profound, in their own way, as the Last Supper.  This is it.  This is life in all its glory, swirling and unfolding around us, disguised as pedantic, pedestrian non-events.  But pull off the mask and you will find your life, waiting to be made, chosen, woven, crafted.”  ~ Shauna Niequist

P.S.  Hey friend, want more encouragement in your life?  I’ve started a Dear Wednesday encouragement crew and if you’d like to be a part of it (and not miss out on the Wednesday post!) make sure to leave your email below or sign up here!  I’m excited to send you mail on Wednesday!

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Posted on July 29, 2016 by | Comments { 0 }

Something new!

Something new! | Misselainious blogHello friends!  So you might have noticed that the categories have changed a bit on my blog.  They aren’t new but I’ve decided to take out a bunch of them and focus in on a few.  Honestly it’s kind of a scary decision for me but one I’ve been leaning towards for a while now.  It’s not that I don’t LOVE making things or putting together outfit posts but what I’ve realized is that what I care about most is encouraging you.

You all have been so amazing these past five (?!) years of blogging.  Thank you for sticking with me through quite a few ups, downs, and changes! :)  I hope this change will be the best one yet (and that maybe I’ll finally figure out what in the world I’m doing haha).

I’ve been brainstorming how I can encourage you a bit more easily and I’ve decided to try something entirely new to me.  It may take a little working out but I think it’s going to be a breath of fresh air.  That’s my hope anyways.  One of my favorite movies is You’ve Got Mail.  I smile when Kathleen Kelly goes to her computer in the morning and waits for it to turn on as she narrates this scene, “I go online, and my breath catches in my chest until I hear three little words: You’ve got mail.”  While our mailboxes don’t talk to us anymore I want you to have that sweet feeling in the form of mail encouragement, from me to you.

Instead of doing a Wednesday post on here like I’ve been doing for the past six months I’m going to deliver it straight to you!  I want it to be a boost for your Wednesday, a little mid-week-pick-up email to brighten up your inbox.  So if you want to get those encouraging posts all you have to do is leave your email address in the comments below and I’ll make sure you get them!  Easy peasy.  I’m excited for you all to be a part of the original crew + I don’t want you to miss out, so make sure to leave your email below or sign up here!  Who doesn’t need a little more encouragement in their lives?!  I’m excited to send you mail on Wednesday!

xxx
Yours truly

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Posted on July 25, 2016 by | Comments { 12 }

Have a wonderful weekend!

Link love 7-8-16 | Misselainious blogJust some things around the web I’ve been watching, reading, or enjoying.  Have a wonderful weekend friends! :)

How smartphone light affects your brain and body.

This letter to young creatives was really encouraging. It’s worth the read!

Wow.  This is beautiful.

Artist transforms old ring boxes into detailed historical dioramas.

The “tricky people” concept.  Every kiddo in your life should be taught this.

What an interesting article.  I’d love to hear your thoughts on this one!

This looks like an interesting salad.

This is a really neat idea for allowance.

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Posted on July 8, 2016 by | Comments { 6 }

East coast trip adventures

Visiting the east cost! | Misselainious blogHello friends! I recently got to go to Maryland to visit some of my family and I had the sweetest time! If you follow me on Instagram or Snapchat (@misselaini)  you’ve seen some snippets but I thought it would be fun to make a list here of my adventures so you can get a peek into my trip.  :)

*Flying in the second row with my parents.  (Thanks peanut allergy for the only good thing you give me: pre-boarding.)

*A hazy pink and purple sky with puffy clouds glowing with lightning (it looked like Tinkerbell was trying to talk and it was so pretty).

*Getting to meet my new handsome little nephew! (Hands down the best part of my trip.)

*Going to the Air and Space Museum and getting to see the Discovery space shuttle (I’ve always wanted to be an astronaut so I was in heaven).  Also astronaut suits cost $22 million…each.

*Seeing planes like the ones my grandpa worked on in WWII as well as seeing the Enola Gay which was sobering (the plane that dropped the first atomic bomb on Japan).

*Walking down brick sidewalks with people I love in a darling little town.

*A cute little soda pop shop and a candy shop that had candy “through the ages”!

*MY FAMILY! Just being with them and hanging out and laughing and having good conversations or watching TV or laughing at a documentary or running errands.  That is what made it all so sweet.

*A bunch of incredibly nice people throwing a shower for my new nephew that was  thoughtful and blessed our family so much.

*Fireflies! These are the most magical little bugs and they make me ridiculously happy.

*Finally getting to meet in person a lovely friend and her daughter who I’ve been friends with for 5 years because of this blog.

*Picking blueberries with sweet friends!

*Late breakfast times and late dinners where we all lingered around the table.

*Going to the Newseum (a news museum) and seeing the Pulitzer Prize winning photos.  They made me cry.

*The old architecture everywhere you go.

*Seeing a cardinal.  (I have this thing about birds.)

*Watching my dad and brother build a deck table while my mom, sis-in-law, the baby, and I all sat in the shade and ate snacks lol.

*Feeding my nephew his bottle and having him fall asleep on me…bliss. (Plus the way his tiny hand grabs onto your shirt. <3 )

*Celebrating Father’s Day with my dad and my brother (his first time!)

*My wonderful friends Rachel and Hannah driving *hours* to see me and spend some time having adventures (in the rain!) and eating at the yummiest taco place (Chaia for anyone that is wondering).

*Visiting the National Arboretum and seeing the bonsai exhibit (especially watching my dad enjoy this), the huge original columns from the Capitol, and taking pictures of my brother, sis-in-law, and nephew.

*Friends having us over for a tasty dinner and lots of laughs!

*The portrait museum and standing under a hotel awning while it poured buckets.

*Going to my first pro baseball game (in Baltimore) with my family on a perfect day.

*My suitcase making it home…not in one piece, the wheels were literally disintegrating and it’s duct taped but I’ve had that one for 18 years and it’s been to Greece, Dominican Republic, and alllll over the United States.  I’m kinda sad to see it go.)  :'(

There were sooooo many things that made this trip perfect (I could go on and on about it) but ultimately the best thing was being with some of my favorite people (my mom, dad, brother, sister-in-law, and nephew).  I’m so thankful for family!

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Posted on July 6, 2016 by | Comments { 0 }