The Big News!

Happy Halloween everybody!

On this last day of October, I am so excited to debut a new adventure for me and Linds in the form of a new website!!

You can check out what we’ve been working on here. Make sure to subscribe to our new blog and follow us both as we write about life and living with quality! All my writing and art will now be on the new website, and Lindsey will now join me with her thoughts and stories!

I am so so very excited about this new chapter in our story, and I can’t wait to see all of you there!

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Pumpkins and Peace

What do the Laney’s do when their house is full of boxes and there is always something else that could be done?

We go to a pumpkin farm, of course! And this isn’t just any old trip to a pumpkin farm, people. This is a treasured tradition in our family. Every year we go to a pumpkin farm, take lots and lots of pictures (naturally), pick out the perfect pumpkin or two, and then end the festivities with a trip to Starbucks for a tasty beverage.

There was no way we were going to skip this trip just because we’re about to move, all our stuff is packed, and everything is in a general state of craziness! So, we went, we took pictures, we selected a pumpkin for carving and some for decoration (which hopefully I can post sometime next week!), and we had fun together.

See? :)

Love! :)

Excited!

I can’t tell you guys how excited I am about the changes coming to A Better Story!

It’s going to be wonderful fun and an amazing blessing to be a part of, and I’m /almost/ ready to reveal what Lindsey and I have been working on!

The operative word is /almost/ because the packing and moving part of our story right now is taking quite a bit of my time. Let me show you a little bit of the progress I’m making though!

Ok, I know you can’t tell anything from this picture except that I have a lot of boxes piled in my dining room area, but I promise I’m making progress I can be proud of, people! One week and counting!

Moving woes and opportunities

Moving is such a challenging task! So many things to pack, and we don’t even own that much stuff!! I’m trying to maintain my sanity during the process. It’s hard because I don’t like things to be out of order. I think that moving is a good lesson in patience, de-cluttering techniques and trust. I have to be patient with the mess; I get to spend lots of time throwing things away; AND I absolutely must focus on trusting the fact that I’m ok no matter what and that God has good plans for us no matter where we are or what state that place is in!

All of it is reminding me how important it is to take things slowly, think of the bigger picture, and maintain some semblance of a thankful heart!

Just writing this makes me feel overwhelmed, though! It feels like such a tall order. So, I’ve been trying to think of ways to add quality into our moving process, and yesterday Lindsey and I decided to go hang out by the lake that’s near our new place in order to do just that. I didn’t bring my camera, but I did take a couple phone pics!

It was near sunset, and the golden beauty and quiet peace were exactly what I needed to think about the bigger picture and take a break from the mess of a household in transition. We were out for maybe an hour or so, but it didn’t take long to add a quality moment to this crazy process. I’m so glad that we spent time at the lake yesterday because it really helped lift my spirits going into this week.

I’m learning that sometimes adding quality to my life is pretty darn simple. And oh so sweet. :)

boxes

Our kitchen cabinets are bare. We packed the whole kitchen this weekend. I kept out a few essentials that I’ll take to our new apartment, but other than that the garage is beginning to fill with boxes that won’t be opened until they reach Denver. It was a fun project to tackle the kitchen together this weekend. It’s incredibly bare in there now! It’s helping me be ready for the move to the temporary apartment though because I really don’t like living in our condo when it’s in such a state!

I am enjoying the winter olympics during this madness. I still remember my brother running around the house in goggles and dad’s gloves with sticks in his hands pretending to be an olympic skiier. I think we have a picture of it somewhere. I love all the hard work and triumphs and really the incredible stories some (really most) of these athletes are living. What an adventure the olympic games is for them! And how I do enjoy watching them have those adventures! :)

We leave for a trip to Denver in less than one week. I’m so excited! It was snowing there yesterday and snow is forecasted for Wednesday. Maybe we’ll get to see some more snow out there! Whatever happens, it’s going to be a marvelous trip with my best friend. And I’ll turn 26 while we’re gone! Life just keeps moving on…

Lindsey did some writing this weekend, and I thought she wrote such beautiful thoughts about our journey that I just had to post some of it here…

“‘If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing. 1Corinthians 13:1-3’

The future is exciting and unknown as well as planned and anticipated. This is the place where growth happens. The sure and secure can scarcely contain the growth for which the soul longs. It is evident that as people with eternal spirits we must journey through the unknown, through the ambiguity of the future, through the fear in order to progress beyond current knowledge, wisdom, and faith in order to arrive at a new and profound beauty. This journey is in essence never ending, however it seems to pause momentarily throughout life to allow us to catch our breath and pause. If we pause too long for comfort’s sake, we die a little while our bodies live on. However if for progress sake we do not pause long enough, we miss the journey for all its infinite beauty.

‘Moments when we feel like a failure, when we feel like we have not done what we and others hoped that we would do, are incredibly painful. Yet in time, often we find a new opportunity and a new passion. We then discover those things that truly utilize the gifts God has given us. That time will come. -unknown’

That time has come. It comes only if we will receive it, and I am ready. Not to progress beyond failure to achievement, but to progress from one season of life’s journey to another. Others will try to define my journey by success or failure. Others will try to put words, values, and measures on my journey. I will not receive them all. Not the toxic measures that judge my worth as in a market economy. I will receive the words from mouths I respect. I will receive the words that proclaim my value in the sight of a loving God. I will receive the words that build up, encourage, and speak a truth that nourish the mind and soul. I will pack those words for the journey ahead and leave behind the dead weight of judgment and ill will. I strive to love the speakers of all words lest I speak words of my own as a resounding gong. I will commit my eyes to seeing all those on the journey through the God lens of love or else realize my journey amounts to nothing. I will enjoy my journey until the next pause all the while breathing in the beauty of where I’ve been and where I’m going.”