Wednesday, 14 December 2011

A Dress for my Princess

Hi there!
My "baby" turned four a couple of months ago (where does the time go??) and I wanted to make her a princess dress that wasn't "scratchy", like most of the shop-bought dresses are. She and her sister have had a couple of beautiful dresses given to them over the years but refused to wear them due to their scratchy, stiff fabric used for the sleeves and skirt.

Seeing as Ariel is her favourite princess, I thought I'd have a go at making a dress similar to hers. (You know Ariel - she used to be a mermaid and then decided to be a human so her dad gave her a pair of legs.)

Anyway, I had no idea how to go about it so I googled "how to make a princess dress" and found an amazing blog called "Make It and Love It". It's creator, Ashley, is an incredibly talented lady who makes the most beautiful things for her home and children. If you want to take a look, you can find it here. (You should see the Mary Poppins costume she made for her daughter!)

On her blog I found some very simple, easy to follow instructions on how to make a Cinderella dress. I adapted it a little as I went and this is what I ended up with.

I don't think I could have chosen a more difficult fabric to work with! It's a silky stretchy material that feels really lovely but played havoc with my sewing machine.
Nevermind, I'm really happy with the result and, more importantly, my little princess loves her new dress!

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Your Yesterday Doesn't Have to Determine Your Today

Morning all.
I just wanted to share something with you that the Lord revealed to me during my quiet time this morning.

Philippians 3:12-14
"I don't mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection. But I press on to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me. No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us."

"Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead..."
Doesn't that sound great? Freeing? Exciting?
It does to me.
Do you realise what Paul is saying here?
Because of Christ within us we can live free of the past and be hopeful of what lies ahead of us in the future.
The past no longer has a hold on you, child of God. 

When I read this verse this morning I realised that so many of my thoughts and attitudes are based around events that happened in the past. My experiences - my past experiences - or, more accurately my perception of those past experiences have been shaping the way I live. That's not wrong or abnormal, in fact everybody does it, it's just that the negative memories hold me back, causing me to be ineffective and defeated. 

But do you see that those mindsets are just an illusion?
We are not ineffective! We are not defeated!
Romans 8:37 tells us that overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, and in 2 Peter 1:3 we are told that God has already given us everything we need for living a godly life.
You + God = VICTORY!

I know it's not just a matter of blocking out the past and being unwise - it's about deciding that the past doesn't have to determine your future.
Your yesterday doesn't have to determine your today.
When we allow the experiences of the past to affect us today we are taken hostage by DREAD.
Dread is a debilitating emotion based on fear and worry, and the reason why we dread (well, why I dread) is because we are calling on past experience.

We dread the dentist because of past experience.
We dread having awkward conversations with difficult people because of past conflict.
When I was pregnant with our second and third daughters I was over the moon except for the fact that I knew what I had to go through when it was time to give birth! I didn't have that dread with our first daughter's birth because I had no prior experience to call on.

Your future is so bright, don't tarnish it by prematurely deciding that there is no hope. 
Forget what negative lessons your past has taught you.
This is a fresh new day and God has great things planned for you!

Please come again soon.
A bientot,

Sunday, 11 December 2011

As You Walk Along

Psalm 40:1-3
"I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, 
and He turned to me and heard my cry.

He lifted me out of the pit of despair,
out of the mud and the mire.
He set my feet on solid ground and
steadied me as I walked along.

He has given me a new song to sing,
a hymn of praise to our God.

Many will see what He has done and be amazed.
They will put their trust in the Lord." 

Here the Psalmist King David talks about waiting patiently and expectantly for the Lord to help: "He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire."

Have you been languishing in a pit of despair, feeling stuck in a pit of quicksand that is threatening to swallow you up?
Take heart my friend.

God will pull you out.
He will pull you out and place you on solid ground - He is safe, reliable and constant, our strength and hope.

Then David says, "...(God) steadied me as I walked along..." (verse 2b)
It is in the WALKING that we find strength and steadiness. As we walk - as we step out, one foot after the other - He will fill us with His strength.

But only as we step out in faith.
Hiding away from life doesn't help - it only causes you to sink deeper.
How do you know what the Lord will do if you just hide yourself away?
How do you know what can be achieved unless you get up and start "walking"?

Step by step.
One foot after the other.
Moment by moment He will lead you.

A bientot mes amis...

Friday, 9 December 2011

A Little Bit of Perspective Can Make a Big Difference

Just saw that August was the date of my last post.
August!? Yikes!
Nevermind, it's good to be back.

Today I want to tell you a little story.

Alex was a girl who didn't have a good start to life.
She was one of three siblings who had loving parents, but early on in her life her mother tragically died. Her father didn't cope well and struggled to care for his three children. Knowing that Alex was the oldest and strongest, the father fed and cared for only her, thus causing the others to die of starvation and neglect.

When she was barely a teenager, she and her father began an incestuous relationship. Together they tried to have children of their own, but none of them were born alive. Not long after they became foster parents to three abandoned babies, but because of her age Alex struggled to be an adequate mother. The babies were neglected and rarely fed, as Alex and her father became increasingly obsessed with each other, showing signs of mental agitation. Avoiding the children as often as they could, they would stay inside while the babies were left outside to fend for themselves, crying because they were so hungry.

It all came to a tragic end when, in a fit of rage, Alex and her father viciously attacked the oldest child, mauling it to death. The parents were found later, inside the house, with their faces covered in blood.

Now, I'm sure you are thinking "what a horrible story". And, yes it is.
But what if I were to tell you that Alex is a BUDGIE, and this whole account is something that happened in our aviary a few weeks ago?
(I bet you are re-reading the story with new eyes now!)

Isn't it interesting how perspective can affect the way we see things? Knowing that the story was about birds makes the whole thing much more innocent and acceptable (well, almost!).

The same is true in our real day to day lives.
Getting some perspective - seeing things through "different" eyes - can be helpful when we are going through a difficult or confusing time. As christians we need to maintain an eternal perspective - after all, our true home is in heaven with our Heavenly Father, and we are but "temporary residents and foriegners" (see 1 Peter 2:11). An eternal perspective means that we no longer see things on a superficial level. I don't mean we are to view life in a mystical way seeing the supernatural around every corner, but yes, God allows certain issues to touch our lives in order that we may grow spiritually and/or bring Him glory.

So the next time you are going through some "thing", ask God to show you what His purpose in it is.
He might surprise you and actually show you!

Thanks for dropping by,
Au Revoir!

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Are You Having an Identity Crisis?

Hands up all those who have ever wished they were someone else?
Perhaps someONE else someWHERE else, doing someTHING else!

We've all done that at one time or another, especially when we've just done something embarrassing and wanted the ground to open up and swallow us whole!

How we see ourself plays an enormous role in our day to day life. It affects our decisions, our even affects the way we treat ourselves.

Where does our identity come from?
Most of our self-perception is established in early childhood, coming from our family of origin.
It was here that we experienced love or indifference; acceptance or rejection; security or dysfunction.

It's not only home that gave us messages about ourselves.
Society - and the media that manipulates it - bombards us all with the statement, "If you were a successful human being then your life would look like this".
Our life doesn't match the images on the screen or in the magazines (even the models themselves don't look like that), so we spend the rest of our lives desperately trying to fill the aching void within us with stuff that never truly eternal quest for the one thing that will bring us peace, joy and fulfillment.

I want to tell you that Jesus Christ is the only way to get that peace, joy and fulfillment you are desperate for.
He died on the cross to take away the guilt and shame you feel about yourself, and to pay the price for your sin. He died to give you freedom!
And just as He was raised to life again, so we too can have new life in Him.

When we make Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour, repenting of our sins and asking His forgiveness, something incredible happens.
Everything that is true about HIM, then becomes true of YOU.
When we become God's child we are adopted into His eternal family (Ephesians 1:5), valued as His precious creation (Ephesians 2:20), and nothing can separate us from His love (Romans 8:35).

It's been said that "your who determines your do", and that applies whether you are saved or not.
Seeing yourself  in the light of God's Word and promises is key to living successfully.

Romans 12:2a says,
"Don't copy the behaviour and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think..."
Don't let another day go by without taking hold of the life-changing truths found in God's Word.
Hallelujah! Rejoice child of God!

A bientot mes amis,

For a list of identity statements you can print off, go to

Sunday, 31 July 2011

You Were Made For More Than This...

Maria loved to sculpt.
She had always relished the earthly coolness of the soft clay as she moulded it into something of beauty.
She came alive when she sculpted, and as she created would often think of the Almighty Creator, feeling honoured that He had blessed her with the ability to make something out of virtually nothing.

But her father didn't feel the same way.
He felt her sculptures were synonymous with making mud pies, despite the recognition she received from those around her. According to him, sculpting was a hobby - a pass-time, not something that was a suitable career choice.

So she became a doctor.
She liked helping people, but her heart wasn't in it. With every script she signed her passion faded, and with every immunisation administered her creativity wilted.
As she closed the door of the doctor's lounge she allowed herself to feel what had been lurking beneath for some time.
She knew she was dying inside.
Hot tears rolled down her cheeks and she felt angry at herself for giving up...for choosing the easy way, the safe way, instead of standing up for what she wanted to do with her life.
The tears wouldn't stop as she thought about the years she'd lost...and she wondered if she would ever have the courage to pursue her dream.

The beep of her pager shocks her into real time, and as she reaches into her pocket she feels an ache deep in her heart.
Maria dares to whisper, "I was made for more than this."

You were made for more than this world has to offer you.
The longings you feel inside are there for a reason.
Our longings point us to the treasure we are seeking.

God is calling to our hearts, pulling us to Him.
Saying to us that nowhere will we find what we need apart from in Him.
He knows the answers, He has the resources, He has the power to fill you up.
He's available 24/7, and He never tires of hearing your voice.

I urge you to pay attention to the cries of your heart.
Let the hurt drive you to your knees - to the point where you finally open your heart and let the love of God flow through all the dry and empty places.

A bientot mes amis,

Monday, 25 July 2011

Simon Says Stamp Challenge

Hi there!
I've been REALLY busy this week, and I've created something for another blogosphere challenge!
Today's creation is an entry for the Simon Says Stamp blog, where their challenge this week is to use newspaper.

Here is my entry...

I've made a little box using Kaisercraft papers, which I embossed and attacked with my fave...Distress Inks!
The little flower is from the Tattered Florals die, when the flower was finished I dipped the tips in embossing ink then sprinkled on clear embossing powder.The leaves are a Cuttlebug die which I then dry embossed and inked with Peeled Paint DI.
The white embossed doily stamp is from My Mind's Eye "Gertie" set.

I love how it turned out.
What do you think?
Why not pop on over to the Simon Says Stamp blog and you too could be in the running for some fabbo prizes!

Thanks for stopping by,

Saturday, 23 July 2011

Hero Arts July Challenge

The July Challenge for Hero Arts has helped me feel a little warmer this week - it is the middle of Winter here in Australia!
The thing I love most about Summer is the fruits we have available here, and because my birthday is in December (when we have Summer) my mum would always buy a big assortment of fruit to have at my party...peaches, mangoes, cherries, watermelon - yum!

It is fruit that has inspired me to create this card for the Hero Arts Challenge...

The "Life is Sweeter" stamp is from the Hero Arts "Friends" set and I used Fired Brick, Spiced Marmalade, and Peeled Paint Distress Inks.

What says "Summer" to you?

Thanks for stopping by!
A bientot,

Tuesday Trigger Time!

Well, I have decided to spread my wings and venture out into the papercrafting world by participating in a few challenges! Eek!

Hop on over to and you can join in the fun!
For their "Tuesday Trigger" challenge, all you need to do is create a papercraft project inspired by this gorgeous coat...

Isn't it cute?
Love the frills...I'm a frill kinda gal. is the project I created using this coat as inspiration:

I have created a "handbag" to go with the coat - what do you think?
Inspired by the colour of the coat and the black buttons, I thought this would make the perfect accessory!
It would be cute way to say thanks to a friend...maybe pop a chocolate in there as well?

Thanks for stopping by!
A bientot mes amis,

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Hi there!
I recently made this cushion for a friend of mine and wanted to share it with you.

Well, when I say "friend" I mean "beautiful lovely christian psychologist".

Anyway, on one of my recent visits to her she told me of an analogy the Lord had given her explaining the value of the precious peace we've been given. We need to hold onto our peace, and not lose it when we face problems and frustrations.

I thought this cushion might be a nice visual aid for her consulting room. I chose green and aubergine (that's eggplant for you unsophisticates!) as they are the colours in the room.
It was soooo easy to put together, and the best part is it only cost me $10 to make!

I wanted to make a cushion, but didn't really have the time or patience to make it from scratch (it was the school holidays), so I decided to take a shortcut and use premade cushions.
 I toddled off to my local Kmart and found these PERFECT specimens for only $5 each. Don'tcha love Kmart?


First I unpicked the side seams of both cushions.
I did this for 2 reasons: I needed to access the wrong side of the green cushion in order to embellish the front; and I wanted to use the aubergine cushion's fabric to make the embellishments!

After I had unpicked the seams, I ironed the wrong side to get the creases out.

Using WordArt, I typed the word "peace", then flipped it horizontally.
I made that sound so simple, didn't I?
The truth is, I spent about an HOUR trying and trying and trying to do this on Word 2010...ironically I lost my peace in the process.
It did not want to work for me.
Then my incredibly intelligent 11 year old suggested I do it on our OLD computer using Word 2003 (2003!).
After the poor old thing managed to boot itself up, I produced a flipped word in 2 minutes flat.
Go figure.

The next thing I needed to do was scrounge up some "Vliesofix", which thankfully I found a piece big enough to do the trick.
What is Vliesofix?
It is a type of fusible webbing used for applique (attaching fabric to fabric). It comes in a roll, and you buy it by the metre. Quilt shops carry it, but I get mine from Spotlight.

You can see me tracing my word onto the paper backing of the Vliesofix.
After the words/pictures have been traced, cut around them roughly.

Next I placed the word and pictures onto the WRONG side of the fabric and ironed over the Vliesofix (paper backing and all) using a dry iron. I actually used a little steam because I didn't want to melt my fabric. Probably not the exact right way to do it...but it worked for me!

When you cut out the word/pictures the webbing is fused to the wrong side, which you then flip over and iron that onto the RIGHT side of the cushion front.
This is why the word/pictures need to be reversed.
(Does that make sense?)

I wanted a simple, peaceful design and when I was happy with the placement I placed a clean teatowel over the word/leaves and pressed it with a hot steam iron. I could use hot this time because there was a cloth between the iron and the applique piece.

Using backstitch I embroidered a circle and then around some of the leaves with matching green embroidery floss. (I had traced around a dinner plate to make the circle.)
Nearly finished!

With right sides together I pinned around the 4 sides of the cushion.
See how I've put my pins in vertically? That allows the sewing machine to run right over them without snapping a needle, and no pins strewn everywhere.

(I confess that I'm a bit of a shocker with pins. When I was 15 I slid my foot over the carpet in my bedroom and onto a pin lying in wait in the pile. It snapped off inside my foot, jamming itself between 2 toe bones. Youch!)

Starting about 3/4 of the way along one side, I sewed around the sides of the cushion using straight stitch and a seam allowance of 1.5cm.
When I got back around to the side that I started on, I finished off  about 1/4 of the way along. This provided an opening for the cushion insert to go back into.

I then turned the cushion cover right way out and inserted the cushion.
Because the cushion insert was smaller than the cover I had enough room to sew a flange. Simply put it's a seam sewn on the right side about 1.5cm in. This also allowed me to close the cushion opening off neatly. 

So there you go.
A simple, quick and easy way to brighten a room or someone's day.

I hope you have fun with it.

Please leave a comment, I'd love to know how you went!

A bientot,
PS - I need to add that the leaf design was reproduced with permission from Martha Stewart's "Encyclopedia of Sewing and Fabric Crafts" .

Sunday, 5 June 2011

It's Time For Something New!

Hi everyone!
Things have been getting pretty serious around here, so I think it's time to implement another aspect of my blog. I'm very excited to announce that very soon I will be posting videos and instructions for doing some fun creative stuff!
I know that there would be a lot of you out there who would like to do some sort of craft but just can't get to a class or group for some reason. This way you can create from the comfort of your own home, working at your own pace.
I hope that these projects will inspire you to create and share some joy with yourself and those around you!

A bientot,
X Rebecca

Thursday, 2 June 2011

I was just thinking about what I wrote on my last post, and I sincerely hope I didn't come across as flippant or uncaring about the experiences you have gone through.

I'm always concerned that in the effort to encourage and build others up, ill-thought out words and nonchalance can cut deeply when somebody is enduring difficult circumstances.
It's so easy to revert to the old cliches that are still (appalingly enough) thrown around like,"It's all for a reason" or "Just dig in deeper to God". As well meaning as those comments are, they fail to cut the mustard.
People in crisis don't want to hear that they aren't doing enough, they want to know that someone cares for them, and wants to walk with them through this terrible time.
After all, love is a verb.

In my own life, I have had my share of pain.

I've never lost a child to cancer, or had my home destroyed by bush fire...but there have been times in my life where I felt that I just could not go on anymore.
Even as I write this I am crying because I remember it so vividly.

I have recently come off a course of medication I'd been taking to treat depression (my fourth episode - I've had it every 6 years for some reason!?) and I wanted to share something I wrote during the midst of this difficult time.

Don't  let me drown in the ocean of lethargy
I'm trying so hard not to sink.
But waving my arm to attract your attention
Is so much harder than you think.

It seems easier just to lay still
To not have any dreams at all
'Cause the higher you climb to achieve them
The further there is to fall.

There's so much that my heart longs to reach for
And much more I want to achieve
But how can I walk toward my goals
When I struggle each day just to breathe?

I know how it feels to want to give up, in fact during the darkest times I developed this habit of just stopping breathing. I would just...stop breathing for a while until I had to take a breath.
It seems so silly now but that's where my head was - I would cover my face and just stop breathing.

The point in me saying all this is that I want you to know that I've been there.
I still am in some ways, there are some issues I need to work through, and God in His wonderful grace is helping me deal with stuff bit by bit.

I don't know your situation - I don't know where you've come from or what you've been through - but I want you to have a think about this question. Here it is.

If you had the choice to turn back time, would you?

If you could go back and change the things that were done to you or by you...would you do it?
I know your immediate response would be "Yes of course I would you brainless twit!" - but I really want you to think about it.

How would your life be different now, if things were different then?
If you had the choice to turn back time, would you?

For me (and it took me a long time to verbalise this) I would say "No".

I will share specifics about my situation another time, but I know beyond any shadow of a doubt, that I would not be where I am now if my life had been untouched by pain.

My pain drove me to God.
It was through relying on Him to get me through each day as a young adult that I discovered God's living Word, the Bible, and through the scriptures God administered life-giving words of hope, peace, acceptance and freedom.
Through the years God has proved Himself faithful over and over again.

Genesis 50:20 rings true with me:
"You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good..."

Satan intends to wreak havoc on you and me, our marriages and our kids.
He is only out to steal, kill and destroy using whatever he can get his hands on. 
But when God is invited into that situation, things happen.
Good things.
God turns that situation around to bless you and all those involved, and ultimately draw you into a beautiful relationship with Himself.

Some things to think about perhaps?

A bientot,
X Rebecca

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Stand Up and Receive Your Diploma!

Today I want to share something that the Lord showed me a little while ago.

It was about four in the morning, and I crawled back into bed after tending to DD3 who wanted me for some reason - I can't remember what it was.
Anyway, I was lying there half-asleep thinking about some health or medical issue that was bothering me (once my brain wakes up that's it), and smiled when I heard what God had spoken to me.

He showed me that every trial, every hardship experienced - no matter how big or small - is a reason to celebrate.
Because we are then qualified to help somebody else going through a similar situation.
Our experience gives us the qualification to help others.

Think about it.
When you know someone who is going through a tough time, what do you say?
You can't say "I understand" if you yourself have never endured the same hardship.
At best we can listen, be there, and offer some sort of practical help.

However, when you have experienced difficulties, you do know what it's like - you do understand a little of how they're feeling because you've been there yourself.
I praise God that because of the hard things I've gone through, I am able to reach out to others with understanding.
I can comfort those who are being treated for depression.
I can relate to others who have come from a broken home.
I can encourage somebody struggling with identity issues.

One of the things I love most about God is that nothing is ever in vain.
He redeems the pain you've felt, the loneliness you've experienced, the hurt you've received by then turning it around and allowing you the honour of helping someone else.

So, if you are going through a tough time, take heart!
God is there to comfort you through it, and then if you are willing, He will bring someone along who you can nurture and make their life a little brighter.

"All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us." (2 Corinthians 1:3,4  NLT)

A bientot mes amis,
X Rebecca

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

What Do You Turn To?

My husband and I went to a concert recently, and as we were listening to the band I noticed the lady sitting in front of me.
She was...big.
Not obese, but big enough that she needed her seat and the one next to it in order for her to be seated comfortably.
I'm ashamed to confess that I had judgemental thoughts about her size.
I'm sure you never do anything like that, but I did.

Anyway, as soon as I had those thoughts, the Holy Spirit pricked my conscience, reminding me that I am no different.
I don't know that lady personally, but unless she has a medical condition she probably got that way because she found that eating makes her feel better.
About herself, about her life, about her losses.

You see, we all turn to something to make ourselves feel better.
We all have something we turn to instead of turning to God.
That thing we turn to when we're feeling bad is the thing we have chosen to replace God.

What do you do when life gets tough?
Perhaps you shop.
Perhaps you drink.
Perhaps you eat...or refuse to eat.
Maybe you run or read romance novels or watch too much tv.

We were created to take care of ourselves - we listen to our body and respond with giving it the thing it needs.
When we're hungry, we eat.
When we're thirsty we drink.
When we're tired, we sleep.

But what about when we are feeling other stuff?
What do we do when we feel rejected?
What do we do when we are feeling unloved?
What do we do when we feel like a failure?

It's not so easy to satisfy those feelings, is it?
Living in the fallen world that we do, these are the issues we have to deal with.

It's natural for us to want to stop feeling discomfort, but these negative feelings aren't so easy to deal with.
There are reasons why you may feel rejected and unloved.
Perhaps it stems from something that happened when you were little, or just recently.
Maybe you were unloved as a child, and the pattern of rejection occured all through your life, still affecting you today?

We learn, sometimes quite early in life, that certain behaviours or activities can lessen the pain we feel inside. Administering those behaviours doesn't heal the pain, but it certainly relieves least for a little while.
We realise that we can stifle the voices of the past.

The problem is that those behaviours won't ever make you better.
God won't allow them to.
He wants to use the pain you are feeling to drive you to Him.
It's only in relationship with Him that you will find healing, forgiveness, and acceptance.

Coming to God and making Jesus your Saviour isn't about losing your's about finding life.
Jesus didn't just die and rise again so you can have eternal life...He did it so you can live in freedom here on earth too.

A bientot,

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Dear Father,
This new day is a gift.
I accept this gift from You.
As I open this gift, I choose to remember that it was given to me by Someone who loves me.
The One who chose this gift did so because He knows me well.

As I open this beautifully packaged gift, I see what is carefully placed inside.
A fresh, new day.
Full of possibility and hope.
Untainted by harsh words, as yet unblemished from problems and sadness.

Because of the purity of this day, because of its pure and peaceful beauty, I am tempted to set it aside and not make use of it.
If I use it, it might get ruined by my human sinfulness.

However, as with any gift, there are three things I could do with this present you have given me:
  • Hide it away in a cupboard, stuffing it out of sight and forgetting all about it - it's beauty and it's possibilities,
  • Set it aside, looking at it and thinking, "One of these days I'm going to use it", or
  • Understand and embrace it's beauty and function, choosing to use it and enjoy it.
Father, as the Giver of this gift of today, the third option is the one that would give You the most pleasure.
You have given me today, You chose today for me because You know me and You know what's best for me.
(An excerpt from my book of quiet time jounalling - dated Sunday, January 23rd 2011)

 There's a quote that goes along these lines,
"Yesterday is gone,
Tomorrow is yet to come,
Today is a gift, that's why it's called the 'present'"

That's true isn't it?

Yesterday is gone...forever.
The things you said or didn't say, did or didn't do yesterday are gone.
All that remains of yesterday are the consequences of our reactions - whether positive or hurtful.
You can't change what you did or said, you can't take back words once they've left your mouth.

Are you resting on your laurels from yesterday - or yesteryear?
Is it time to move on and create new memories, new relationships, a new definition of YOU?

And what about tomorrow?
Tomorrow doesn't exist...yet.
It's not here, it never has been, yet we put so much hope in it.

"I'll do it tomorrow."
"I'll ring and apologise tomorrow."
"I'll give up drinking tomorrow."
"I'll apply for that course tomorrow."

We may as well replace tomorrow with someday, because sometimes that can be what we're really saying.

All we have is today.
This day.
And to take it one step further, all we really have is this moment.
In reality, this single, split-second moment is all we have to work with.

You have the choice, I have the choice, whether we use this moment, this hour, this day, this life - or if we choose to sit by and allow opportunities to slip through our fingers.

I know that life can be hard.
I know that sometimes it just seems too much.
But you can do it.
You deserve a great life, doing the things you've always dreamed of.
You deserve to live.

A bientot,

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Hello again!
Years ago (when Darling Daughter #2 was only a few months old) a rather large, rotund pastor (whom I had only just met mind you) said to me, "Have you got a bun in the oven - or are you just fat?"

Now, how would you handle that situation? How would you respond to this person?

The nerve of this guy sent me into some kind of verbal paralysis.
I was so stunned by his comment I just stood there and laughed along with all the ladies around him who were saying, "Teehee, oh you shouldn't say such things! Teehee!"

That happened 8 years ago, and to this day I still lie in bed thinking up clever comebacks I could have said to him!

Just between you and me, I wish I could let people have it sometimes, don't you?
Letting loose with a flurry of verbal karate chops - "Hi-ya! Have you looked in the mirror lately?!"
But, of course, that would never do.

We all say and do dumb thoughtless things now and again. After all, we are human.
I guess there will always be those who need to practice using that filter inside their head that can prevent the bad stuff from coming out.

It's really important to handle offenses in the right way.
Our natural reaction is usually to lash out and hurt the offender back, but that is never in your best interests, or what's best for your relationship with that person.
I try and think about why the person may have said or done something offensive toward me.
If there's no obvious cause as to why the offense came, I make sure it wasn't something I unintentionally said or didn't say.
Perhaps the person is going through a difficult time and you were in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Sometimes there just isn't any logical reason why that person may have hurt you.

The important thing is where do you go from there?
Here are some tips to help you out:
  1. Don't let your knee-jerk reaction be to lash out verbally or physically - take some time out away from the other person to think and preferably pray about the situation.
  2. If appropriate, approach the person and share your feelings. Keep in mind that the health of the relationship needs to be your motive, not to hurt them back.
  3. Forgive them. This is harder than it sounds isn't it? Forgiveness is so important to your emotional health, and it's actually to benefit YOU more than the other person.
  4. Move on - whether the offender is understanding of you or not. You can't change others, but you can change and grow yourself. And despite your pain, try not to let a negative outcome deter you from reaching out to others.
A crucial part to handling offense is this: pray that the offender will be blessed.
I know, I know - that's the last thing you feel like doing at the time.

I have found that doing this really helps me get over the hurt, and it's comforting because I know I'm responding in the way Jesus wants me to.

What have your experiences been? I'm interested to hear your thoughts, comments, and questions.
Thanks for calling by, come again soon!

A bientot!
X Rebecca

PS - I need to add that you must never condone any sort of physical or sexual violence toward you or your children. Please seek professional help - don't try and handle it on your own.

Sunday, 1 May 2011

So This is Blogging...

I wonder how long I could stare at this blank screen before the words come?
It's not that I have nothing to say, but that I feel I have SO much to say and share with you I'm not quite sure where to start.

I guess the beginning is always a great place to start something.

There are two reasons I wanted to start a blog.
The first reason is that I love to write.
Not that I'm an author or anything, but I enjoy composing sentences and paragraphs using words that come together to create something meaningful.

To convey an idea.
To encourage a friend.
To bring hope to the hurting.
To show others that they can create something beautiful in their life.

I want the posts I write to be meaningful, encouraging, and to brighten your day.

I think I enjoy communicating through the written word because I can choose what to say, and how to say it.
Writing gives me the luxury of thinking before I "speak" - not only to prevent me from saying something that could be offensive, but quite often when I'm speaking with someone face to face I find it hard to speak cohesively, and I scream inside my head "spit it out!!"
Do you ever struggle with that?

The other reason I wanted to start a blog was that I wanted a platform to showcase the things I make.
God made me creative, and if I don't use that gift I feel very, very blah.
I confess that I haven't made good use of His gift to me, for one reason or another, but I'll talk about that another day.

Before I go, I want to explain the reason for the rather unusual title for my blog.
"Une Vie Florissante" is french for "A Flourishing Life" (isn't french beautiful?).
When I was setting up the blog I wanted to incorporate the word "flourish" in the title somewhere, because it speaks of growth and health, AND one of my favourite stamps to use when crafting is a flourish (a swirly fancy curlicue thing).

Why french?
Well, because in english it was taken.
As simple as that.

X Rebecca