Carly’s Story

“God took me on an adventure… He used my story, with all it’s screw-ups, for His glory!”

What Is Love?

“Do marriage vows seem to mean as much today as they used to? If you’ve heard anything about the increase in divorce rates, you may wonder. Bill & Glad are ignoring the trends. More than ever the vows they made 50 years ago are being tested. In sickness and in health, in good times and in bad, the promise they are keeping is a true example of what love is.”

(via Mashable)

It All Happened So Fast…

…because we can.

#harlemshake

6 Quick Updates from My New Coffee Spot

First off, I’m sorry that I have neglected this blog over the last month. Sorry! Life has continued non-stop and I’ve had to step back and hit pause on a few things. Now that things have somewhat settled down… I wanted to give you a quick update on me and the family.

1. My new coffee joint. A couple miles from the office = the perfect lunch-break retreat! I’ve wrote about Land of a Thousand Hills coffee and praised their joyous blends and roasted goodness. They have a nice set-up in the Vinings area that overlooks the Chattahoochee River. It couples nicely with a smooth pour-over or pressed cup of Joe. Thanks to my buddy Youngsang for telling me to come! (Btw, the picture is lovely, right?)

2. Our house is on the market. Those on FB and Twitter probably know, but we ‘moved out’ of the house Memorial Day weekend. In the course of 5 days, we packed up and U-Haul’d it out of there! Mixed with sadness and excitedness, we moved into my parents’ basement while the house sells… and for the next season of life. Knowing that we’re taking a pretty big hit on the house, we’ll need to hang tight for a little while to re-save back up. Big plus: we’re less than 4 miles from Ben’s gang. Big win! But, lastly, please say a prayer for us that everything moves quickly and everyone stays adjusted nicely in the new digs!

3. Family vacation. Our family vacays over the last few years have all been car-trips (beach, nearby mountains, reunions, etc.). But this year, we’re going large! A couple weeks back, we got tickets for the whole family to visit my family out in sunny Southern California. So, come early October – we’ll be chowing down In-n-Outs, sun-bathing on Huntington Beach, and visiting family from LA to San Diego. But first, Harper and I are going out there next week for a wedding. Holla!

4. Work is going great. Have a couple trips planned (DC, NYC/Boston) and busy as always… and couldn’t ask for a better place to be at right now. A year and a half ago, when I made the job-switch I was anxious and expectant – now, 17 months later I am grateful for the place that God has put me in… for the growth-opportunities, work-flexibility, and overall satisfaction. On top of working full-time, I’m planning on starting my Masters this fall. ‘Bout to get cray cray up in here!

5. A little running. While Jen has been running more recently (ran the Nashville half a couple months ago), we’ve just now started to run/train together as we have a couple races on the horizon. We are going to run the inaugural Area 13.1 locally here in Roswell, GA. Pretty cool – it’s a ‘night race’ that starts at 6:30 PM. Also in October, while in California, we’re going to hit up the Long Beach half-marathon. Pretty stoked about that!

6. Family, family, family. Jen is holding down the fort at home: prepping for home-schooling the kiddos (mainly Sophia’s preschool in the fall), being the ideal support-partner to me, and connecting with other moms/friends on a regular basis. Sophia and Olivia will be in the same ballet class this fall. Harper is on the verge of walking all the time (no rush, though!).

I promise the next post will come sooner than 4-weeks out… Thanks for bearing with me!

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What’s new with you? What’s on deck with your family this fall?

Olivia Turns Three!

There are some days when you just need to be goofy:

Make Your "I'm Three" Face!

I am one of “those Dads”.

I take pictures with my phone all the time. Goofy ones.

I need to remember, however, that all pictures don’t necessarily need to be tweeted or FB’d, but that’s a different story.

With that being said, my middle girl turned three last Saturday! Cliché as it is, time flies.

Each one of our kids is exceptionally unique. Sophia (4) is our “beat-to-her-own-drum” one. Harper (1) is our “laid-back” one. But, if I had to describe Olivia in five words, she is:

  • Smart (very verbal and probably more articulate than me sometimes. LOL!)
  • Kind (always willing to share, give hugs, and make people laugh)
  • Glamorous (always wearing a crown, necklace or princess dress)
  • Fearless (ask her to do something, she’ll do it)
  • Fiesty (even sweet girls can be strong-willed at times!)

My little smart, kind, glamorous, fearless and fiesty girl turned 3 this past weekend. Can’t believe it!

Happy Birthday, Olivia!

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If you had to describe your kid(s) in one word, what would you use?

Drink Coffee, Do Good

Along with serving great coffee right in my backyard, one of the things I love about 1000 Hills Coffee is the driving message behind their business. Jonathan Golden (Roswell, GA), their founder, started the company after being moved by the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. In fact, it “led Golden to start a coffee company that pays a fair wage to the farmers of Rwanda, helps them with their basic needs, and brings a quality product to coffee lovers.” Great coffee from a great company? Yes, please!

As the fellow coffee lover that I know you are, I invite you to check out their site: www.landofathousandhills.com. Or, if you’re a Twitter’r, follow them here.

In the video below, Golden shares an important message about how we as Christians share the gospel:

“Every once in a while, God give us something big to do, but every day he gives us something small to do. Those small things make a difference.” – Jonathan Golden

I tend to forget the little things do make a difference — little things like drinking a cup of coffee. Not even where the coffee comes from, but also who I’m drinking it with (my wife, a friend, a coworker?). A few months ago Jen and I started a weekly Thursday AM “coffee date” — a standing 30 minutes each week to connect, catch-up, and talk about what’s on our minds… all over a good cup of joe. :) There have been mornings where we’re dead tired, but have tried to stay disciplined knowing that God will honor those ‘little times’.

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What “little thing” is God reminding you about today? And how can you use that for His glory?

The Salvation Stick

After seeing the idea on Pinterest, Jen created this bucket of “prayer sticks” to include in our girls’ night-time routines. We wanted to be intentional in praying for specific people and things. It clever, unique, and our girls love it! (Now they close their eyes, pick out a stick, and get all excited!)

Earlier this week, Sophia (4 yo) pulled out the “Salvation stick” — the one that just says Salvation… where we, as parents, get the opportunity to explain what this means to our kids in the most simplest terms. The girls turned to me for an interpretation, and…

…I was speechless. <<Crickets>>

Like a clunker with a burned out engine, I stalled.

Thankfully, the kids probably didn’t think anything of the quick 5-second pause, and Jen stepped in and told them what we believe: God loved us so much that Jesus came to earth so we can have a relationship with Him. It’s not anything we did or can do, but because of His grace and love. 

In a sense I know I was caught ‘off guard’, but I should be able to explain my faith to someone. Let alone explain it at it’s most granular level, right?

“Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. 1 Peter 3:15 (NIV)

In any event, I’ll be ready next time my girls select that particular stick. :)

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Does your family have any unique ways to include God in the everyday routines?
How would you explain ‘salvation’ to a 4-year old?

The Story of Ian & Larissa

Marriage is “mainly about displaying the covenant keeping love between Christ and His church”.

This story of Ian & Larissa is inspiring. Watch and enjoy!

HT: Desiring God

A Little Language, Culture and History

Being overseas for work this week has reminded me most about one thing: diversity matters.

Not just accepting peoples’ viewpoints as valid or fact, but remembering that we all come from different backgrounds and places… and that’s okay.

I’ve spent a week in my company’s global headquarters this week, and while it’s not in the heart of London, it is very diverse. Living where I live in the States, I miss out on the languages, cultures and history that I am able to experience here.

In the matter of a day, I hear German, Spanish, Italian, French, Swedish, and Portuguese spoken in the office. Truthfully, that is only the tip of the iceberg as there are many more languages heard on the streets. On top of that, this is not even London — where I would imagine would be where I’m at times 10!

This.

Upon arrival, I spent an afternoon doing my own “London-in-a-Day” micro-trip. Short, but sweet — History and culture jam-packed into my own little 7-hour mini-adventure!

As I still process some of the things I heard at The Orange Conference last week, I am reminded about the importance of relaying these experiences to my own children. Living where we live (suburban ATL), it is easy to stay put and interact with those similar. It could be months before you hear another language spoken… and I’m not sure how I feel about that. In a sense, I feel compelled to make sure I intentionally put my kids in situations where they are exposed to other people, cultures, languages, etc.

“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ.” (Gal 3:28)

And not just to give them a “good experience”, but to ultimately show them that we are all the same — as JFK said, “…our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this small planet. We all breathe the same air.” And in the end, we are all in need of the same great God.

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Where have you experienced the most “diversity/culture” in your own life?

OC12: Friday Tweets Rundown

Yeah, we totally punked out.

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Any of these tweets stick out? Tell me about it.

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