Monday, June 29, 2009

Food and Games




I'm hoping that the stuffed bell peppers don't look too disgusting to you. Sometimes a picture does not do food any justice but, I am on a new mission to photograph the few decent meals I cook and to make the food look tasty in a picture. It's a great way to challenge my photography skills with something other than people. This is the start of that food project:). The bell peppers are so easy and so delicious! I use hamburger meat, diced tomatoes, rice, chopped onion, garlic, salt, basil, pepper and whatever other spices I might feel like and top it with cheese. SO EASY to prepare and that is my kind of dinner! The other pictures are of the extra long game of corn hole that Joey played with some of of our friends last night while others of us sat on the sides and watched (or took pictures:). I wanted to give some of you in California who have never heard of this game a better feel for how it works:). Hope the pictures help!

More Entry Inspiration





Still thinking about what I want to do with the entryway. I don't want to do anything impulsively that I will regret so I'm trying to take my time. On the hunt for a cute dresser or entry table and debating what to do about color schemes. Who would have thought an entryway could be so difficult?? lol.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

The Devil's Arithmetic

Netflik's suggested that I rent this movie based on my movie preferences. I had never heard of it but, I read the summary and thought it sounded interesting and so I watched it today. It's the story of a teenage girl in modern US and she is recquired to attend a Passover dinner with her Jewish family even though she has no interest in it whatsoever and her disrespect is evident to everyone around her. As she attends the supper, she is transported back to the 1940's in Berlin. The experience is life changing for her. For being an older film and one that was made on a small budget, the story is beautiful and very riveting. It's only been 60+ years since those horrific events took place and yet it is a distant memory or a sad textbook history lesson for most everyone now and not much else. In the same way I got to thinking about how much time has passed since Christ was on this Earth. It's been over 2,000 years since the Son of God walked among us!! Aside from the bible, we no longer have stories being passed down, we have no videos or photos to help us visualize that time or to imagine what it was like. As a result, it's so easy to feel detatched from the awe and the wonder that we should feel when we talk and think about Jesus. If we aren't reading our bibles and remembering the stories and connecting with the Lord through His word we can miss out on knowing Christ completely! How incredible would it be if we were sitting in church one Sunday and the next moment we found ourselves sitting next to Jesus and the other disciples. How amazing would it be if we got to look at the face of our King, our Savior and listen to him as he talked about anything and everything about life and why we are here. To hug him, to tell Him how much He means to us even 2,000 years after his time here on Earth, to thank him over and over again for the body breaking torture he endured willingly for us so that our sins would not be counted against us on judgement day. What a gloroius experience that would be! We like new things, we like new news and we get bored with old news and old things but, we need to keep the good news of Jesus alive and new in our hearts by reading the word and spending time in prayer and we need to share this good news with everyone around us until the time of Christ's return which I'm sure isn't far off!! Just something to think about. Be blessed all!

Additional thoughts: Our Pastor reminded us all today in church that it is OUR STORIES about what Jesus has done in each of our lives and our experiences with the powerful Holy Spirit (which is alive and active in our lives as we speak), that are always new and always fresh everyday! I have seen miracles in my life that can only be accredited to the miraculous hand of God; people being cured of cancer, marriages being saved, finances being blessed in the perfect moment, children being healed of illnesses, needs being met when needed most, jobs being supplied, relationships being restored, words being spoken at the precise moment that they are needed most and SO much more. What is Jesus doing in your life that you can share and pass on to future generations to keep the good news alive and new with every morning?

Friday, June 26, 2009

Never will we forget Michael Jackson's Moves -RIP

Never will we forget the moves that this guy was able to pull off with ease. I was really hoping for a big comeback from Michael, but alas, a rough life will take it's toll on all of us. Odd and eccentric as the guy was, he could dance like a genius. Enjoy!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Workin' It




I have had no volunteers for photo sessions in a week and I was starting to have with drawls so I recruited Joey yesterday after work to have some photo fun with me. We took a good deal of pictures and took turns controlling the camera since we both enjoy taking pictures. Tune in to my photography blog for a LOT more pictures from this session at http://caseymartinezphotography.blogspot.com Hopefully Joey and I can become a photography team! That would be such a blast:).

Monday, June 22, 2009

Weekend Warriors





Our weekend consisted of a wide array of activities from acquiring a new/used chandelier from Joey's Aunt (future entryway light!), taking my car into the shop as the AC decided to take some time off during the hottest week in North Carolina (..still have yet to get my car back 4 days later), I got a couple new pairs of sandals from Payless (oh, how I love a good price), we scoped out some new neighborhoods in our area and dreamed about the Blue house above that sat across the street from the pond Joey is standing by and I sat on the porch, we ate a yummy banana split from DQ before going into Home Depot and then watched Valkyrie (which is an incredibly stirring and emotional movie much to our surprise). Whew!! Oh, and did I mention that we had the most amazing Father's Day service that I have ever heard yesterday at church. Joey and I were both equally blessed, encouraged and motivated by it. All in all a nice weekend spent with my hubs:)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Yard Progress- hip hip hooray



The front yard makes me smile when I see it now. The first year that we lived here I tried to avoid looking at my front yard as the plants that the builder gave us were hideous neon green bushes and a half dead tree...which is completely dead now:(. Now I look at the thriving plants and the variety of colors and I just feel relaxed and content. Hard work pays off:)!




To the right is our lawn as of a week ago. It is is a seasonal grass which means that for about 5 months out of the year the grass is sleeping and basically appears to be "dead." It's not pretty by any means in the early spring or winter but, the plus side is that it is extremely "green" in that it only needs to be watered once every few weeks and it is extremely tolerant to the baking summer heat that we have in this state. We learned the hard way though that the grass is not tolerant to dog pee and found that it was in fact killing the grass at a rapid rate! We resorted to installing an electric doggie fence to keep Dakota in a certain area to minimize the pee damage. You can see circular pockets on the green lawn picture. That is after a month of the grass trying to recover from her pee:). Live and learn:). The bottom lawn picture was taken in April. What a difference 2 months can make eh:). Now to plant some trees, flowers and bushes in the backyard!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Conquering the EntryWay






So, I have decided to focus on decorating the entryway as it is small and in desperate need of some TLC. After all, the entryway is the first "room" in our home that welcomes people and ultimately sets a mood for the rest of the house! If I had loads of money the dang thing would already be decorated but, I gotta work with what we've got so it will take a while...meanwhile you all get to come along for the ride! lol. I'm going to start by posting a bunch of entryway pictures that caught my eye. What I'm hoping to find is a nice entryway table, a funky mirror or some eye catching art, a dainty chandelier,a fun door sign and some other small accessories:). TJ Max here I come! Do any of you have an entryway that you are thrilled with? Any ideas for me? I will take all the help I can get! Let the process begin......:-)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Expressing Gratitude

First and foremost, I am grateful for Jesus Christ, His Holy word, and the blood that he shed for me on Calvary. Many people will say that they are Christians and I think that is awesome but, so rarely do we really hear why they want to be a Christian or what impact it has had on their life. I was raised in a Christ centered home but, it wasn't until my late teen years that the reality of what Christ has done for me, hit me like a two by four in the face. I have never been the same since. Jesus was perfect, amazing, wonderful, faultless, all knowing, unconditionally loving and so many other things and still, by choice he died a brutal death at "our hands" on the cross so that we could live a life free from the bondage of sin. Yah, that is all babble talk if you don't get it or if you haven't yet experienced a life changing relationship with Christ, but once you have, it's the most incredible and worth while journey you could ever take!!!
I am so grateful for my parents. They have been married for 28 years now (right mom and dad?) and their marriage in itself is a miracle that inspires me daily to work hard on my own marriage and to be a better wife for my husband. My dad has worked his bootie off for my family for more years that I have been alive and my mom took the bible verse, "Train up a child in the way he should go and even when he is old he will not depart from it" (Proverbs 22:6) and showed us how to live that out in our daily lives. Because of her, my entire family has a relationship with Jesus Christ that is real and powerful. You both rock my world mom and dad!
I am grateful beyond words that God blessed my husband and I with the ability to buy this house when we were just 24 years old (two years ago)! I am so thankful for the shelter that it provides me and my husband in the heat and during storms and so grateful to have so many luxuries at my fingertips; like clean water, hot water, a bed to sleep in, electricity, a washer and dryer, a yard to play in and garden in and a fridge to store food...so many things that we all take for granted. For as long as I should be allowed to stay here, I am grateful!
I LOVE nature in general but, I especially love flowers and how they add a special sprinkle of color to both my home, my garden and all the landscapes I drive by on a daily basis. More importantly that that, they remind me of what an awesome artist my God is. He is the author and ultimate designer of all that grows on this Earth and I can't help but, think of Him and praise His name every time I smile at a beautiful flower arrangement or while looking at my garden. I am so grateful for the wondrous things God has made for us to enjoy!


Last, but certainly not least I am grateful beyond words for my dearest friend and husband, Joey. He works so hard for us everyday and expresses constantly that his greatest desire is to make enough income so that I can someday be a stay at home mommy. Anything that I need done around the house he does without argument and anytime I need an ear or counsel I can always count on his! Above all that, his love for the Lord inspires me daily in more ways that I could ever detail. He is an amazing man of God and I am so blessed to have him as my husband!

I am a big fan of Tara Whitney's photography and I am always on her blog checking out her pictures and getting new ideas. I was on her blog today and got the idea to participate in the 5 photos that depict my gratitude challenge they she and another photographer initiated. You can check out Tara's 5 pictures as well as many others who commented on her post. If you feel up for it please join me in posting 5 pictures (that you take:) and leave me a comment letting me know to check your site:). It will be fun!

LOVE the stripes!!!





Okay, so our blog layout has changed and I know that many of you won't like it at first but, let me just say that the reason I changed it is because I could only upload pictures at a certain size with the previous, adorably cute, pink layout. I didn't like how small the pictures were and I am ultimately trying to make the blog more viewer friendly. Give it time:) You'll get used to it:). In other news: I found this bathroom picture on someone else's blog and though Joey doesn't know this yet...sometime in the next 5 years I would like to do something similar with our master bathroom:) haha. We are no where near ready to tackle our bathrooms at this time, but they desperately need a face lift in the color department and I just thought this was the coziest looking bathroom. First you paint the darker color all over and then tape off the stripes for the lighter color. LOVE the colors too! Okay, ttfn:)

Monday, June 15, 2009

Ug, Monday

Love this cozy little living room...looks nothing like mine..maybe someday...
Joey should have gotten this cheesy trophy yesterday:)!

Why do weekends always go by so fast? I really wish that Monday-Friday were "off" days and Sat-Sunday were work days. That would be so wonderful! In other news, Joey placed first both days of his Virginia tournament this weekend! That is 2 first place wins for my fisherman! I'm so proud of him. As long as I have known Joey, whatever he puts his mind to, he accomplishes with flying colors. If you happen to talk to him, please congratulate him on his wins! Meanwhile, I spent my weekend going to a nearby lake and hanging out with some friends and playing a game of soccer (I can barely move my legs today!). I watched James Bond Quantum of Solace and I hate to say it but, I was really not all that impressed. Sure the actions scenes were very well done, but the story line was boring to me. Oh, and I enjoyed eating a lot of Reeses pieces bites. Love those crunchy little suckers!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Rap It - Lecrae

Most of you already know that I love this guy's lyrics, style and passion for the Lord. It's just so cool to me to see someone that has a gift, giving the credit to whom it's due, to Jesus, the one who gave him that gift, the money, the fame etc. This guy is amazing and so inspiring to me, rap music and all. Just felt like sharing one of his songs today. Joey and I really like this one.


Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Wallpaper Anyone?





I know that I should feel so wrong for saying this but, I LOVE the way wallpaper has made a modern and attractive comeback! You would think I would know better after hours of tearing at hideous wallpaper with my mom when I was a kid, but, alas, the designer in me thinks that wallpaper has so much potential and it is finally being realized! Granted, when we all wallpaper our houses and it goes out of style in 10 years everyone is going to hate us when they buy our houses. That is their problem though:)! haha. Does anyone else have a special place in their hearts for the new look of wallpaper or is it just me?? I actually added the last picture because I am thinking very seriously about painting the inside of my door. I don't know why but, staring at a buck white door every morning is kind of depressing to me. I'm thinking about painting it black or blue....though I am not in a hurry to do it so we shall see:)....

Monday, June 8, 2009

Weekend




Joey fished at his Grandparents lake with his Granddad all weekend long and I drove up to Virginia to visit my dear friend Elissa and her two little boys, Logan and Austin. I definitely got my much needed baby fix! Austin is over 3 months old and is as cute as a little button. Logan is over 2 years old now and is talking up a storm. They are the cutest little blue eyed kids and it has been such a treat to watch them grow! Joey and his Granddad had a very successful fishing trip as you can tell by the pictures above. Joey caught a fish that was over 7 pounds and then proceeded to catch a few more that were really good sized after that. Granddad also had a super successful day and caught a nice 5 pound or so bass. They had a great time to say the least:). I got to go to the beach and take pictures for Elissa and her boys. It was very comical to try and get a little baby and a two year old to look in the direction of the camera at the same time. I'm actually not sure that we accomplished that once in over 400 pictures but, we had a great time laughing at the pictures after the fact. I will post some of the pictures on my photo blog later today so check them out: http://caseymartinezphotography.blogspot.com

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Such a cute video

I know most of you have probably already seen this but, I just had to post it again for kicks. This little girl absolutely cracks me up:0. Just a nice diversion to your already very exciting day!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Natta Much Going On

I really love the French style furniture and mirrors...want something similar for my entryway
We've Gotta Represent!!!

I'm going to Virginia this weekend to visit my dear friend Elissa and her two precious little boys. Her hubby is on deployment for 7 months (four to go!) and she has been doing absolutely amazing on her own all things considered. I can't wait to take some pictures of her kids to share with you guys next week:). And in other exciting news; Joey gets to fish all weekend long because he doesn't have a wife to report to:). lol. So, I think we are both equally as excited about this weekend, we just need it to get here faster! Other random news: GO LAKERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Oh, and if you haven't watched the Here Comes the Newleyweds show you really should check it out. It is cute and very funny!

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