Monday, July 30, 2007

Photo Shoot

I had the incredible blessing of having another photo shoot today -- what adorable kids I had to work with! Thank you, Nelsons!

-- girly fun --




Thursday, July 26, 2007

Only trust Him

The fight for joy is the struggle to trust God with the burdens of life. It's a fight for freedom from worry. It's a fight for hope and peace and joy which are all threatened by unbelief and doubt about God's promises.

-John Piper

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Random Picture

John 3:30

"He must INCREASE,
but I must DECREASE."

The more a man dies to himself
the more he begins to live unto God.
-Thomas a' Kempis

Monday, July 23, 2007

Recent gleanings

:: As Christians our ultimate goal in prayer must be to glorify God by changing the world...Sin causes indifference, and it is impossible for indifferent people to change the world.

:: God does not ask us to confess our sins because He needs to know we have sinned, but because He knows that we need to know we have sinned.

:: My prayer life will never rise above my personal life in Jesus Christ.

:: Before you pray for a change in circumstances, you should pray for a change in character. (John Allan Lavender)

:: The great danger in having enemies is not what they do to us -- it is what we do to ourselves as we allow harsh, bitter, angry reactions to develop. And bitterness towards others drains prayer power. (David Hubbard)

:: Our prayer expresses our commitment to Christ. By talking to God we affirm our basic decision to depend on Him.

Excerpts from: The Hour that Changes the World by Dick Eastman
"Could ye not watch with me one hour?" -Matthew 26:40

For those of you...

who have been begging for more pictures of Charissa (you know who you are!!) here is a hodge-podge of pictures I've taken recently. I am quickly finding out that the more mobile she becomes, the less she sits still and wants to cooperates for pictures! Always on the go -- here is a glimpse in her life...

:: a rare moment of playing in her crib ::

:: helping in the kitchen ::

:: we are still in the process of teaching her that not everything goes in her mouth! ::

:: rubber ducky -- you're the one!
you make my bathtime so much fun! ::

Okay, so I do get a few posed pictures of her yet!

:: a little laundry helper in training ::

:: thouroughly enjoying time with Daddy ::

Life is a journey -- cherish it!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Nothing like it

You know, there is nothing quite like skimming over the water at high rates of speed on an innertube.
There is nothing quite like the water splashing in your face so you can't see the next big wave.

There is nothing quite like "going flying" over the water.

There is nothing quite like being hoisted back up on the inntertube by your brother as one's grip slips. (Thanks Andrew!)

There is nothing quite like laughing so hard with your brother that you can barely hang on.
And, there is nothing quite like waking up the next morning and having your muscles tell you that there is nothing quite like it.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Please pray

It's another wedding! If you remember back in May I was able to take Caleb and Abby's engagement pictures -- and they asked if I would photograph their wedding as well. Due to my family being in Michigan at that time, I had to turn it down.

But things develop and change! As the plans stands now Rachel and I will be flying back to Omaha on Friday, photograph the wedding for them on Saturday, and then fly out yet Saturday night to be back in Michigan for our family's Sunday morning service. It will be a huge weekend, thus, I am asking for your prayer support.

The wedding day isn't until October 6, yet there are many things I need to prepare beforehand. As Proverbs 21:31 says:

"The horse is prepared for the day of battle,
but deliverance is of the Lord."

I am definitely going to study and try to prepare myself, but ultimately the results are of the Lord, and I want His name to be glorified through this all. Despite what you all might think, I am not a professional, and I'm still a little bit nervous doing another wedding. It is definitely out of my comfort zone!

As the day approaches I ask first of all that as I prepare the Lord would bring situations across my path now that will prepare me skill-wise for any adjustments or surprises that might come up on their wedding day.

And on the practical side, I need much wisdom as I start shopping for a few more pieces of equipment and accessories. It's a known fact that most girls like shopping, but when it comes to technical numbers and statistics, I don't do so well! (I'm much better at colors!)

Thank you so much for your support and prayers, and continuing to join me on this adventure of a learning photographer! Watch for the results and answered prayer in October!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Live in this light:

Without Christ,
not one step.

With Him -- anywhere!

David Livingstone

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

It's true

People have often told me that changes happen 'sooner that you think.' And though I've always known there was some truth in that, at the same time it is hard to fathom change until it happens!

But it happened this morning -- my only older brother left and is headed towards Wyoming. As excited as I am for the paths the Lord has directed him in, at the same time I am already missing him soooo bad!

So many memories! From getting stuck in the mud together at a wee age to seeing you go off on your own now, I've always looked up to you Josiah, and can't wait to see the plans God has for your future!

While you are gone, know that I am "always laboring for you in prayers, that you may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God." Colossians 4:12

Last night you were just down the hall and I could give it in person, but now I must send my hugs and prayers across the many, many miles to you. I love you, big brother!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

At the judgment seat

Paul says that we must all, preachers and other people alike, "appear before the judgment seat of Christ." But if you will learn here and now to live under the scrutiny of Christ's pure light, your final judgment will bring only delight in seeing the work God has done in you.

-Osawald Chambers

By popular demand

My blog was I have no more secrets. (Okay, so maybe still a few!)

Rachel -- I do want to say a big thank you to you! Countless times you have spurred me on when I was discouraged, brainstorming with me when needing new ideas, and even putting me back together when I began falling apart from nervousness or stress. Specifically in the area of photography, so many of the favorite poses have been your ideas, and your ready smile and willingness to help have so blessed me! So a big thank you to you!!! I know I wouldn't be where I am today if it weren't for your love and help.

So many of you asked to see pictures of the winning photographs. And guess what?! You've already seen them! (Do you think I have enough pictures to take and keep a good one all to myself while keeping up this blog at the same time?!) I could make you search the archives for them, but to be nice I'll post the links for you...

The first assignment was an animal, and I sent in ::THE BABY DINOSAUR::

Secondly, they asked for a picture that would be of human interest; something that would be in a newspaper. The biggest human interest happenings I've photographed lately would have to be the testimony of our family's ::BUS CRASH::

And thirdly, just for fun, I also sent in a picture from when we were painting with light a while back; I chose the picture of ::ME, MYSELF, and I::

I was so surprised when I opened the envelope and saw the award -- and that is an understatement! I want to say thank you to all of you who have encouraged me along the way as I continue to learn, and may all glory be lifted unto the One who redeemed me, made me His own, and calls me according to His purpose.

"I will go in the strength of the Lord GOD;
I will make mention of Your righteousness, of Yours only.
O God, You have taught me from my youth;
To this day I declare Your wondrous works."
Psalms 71:16-17

Friday, July 13, 2007

Hacking the blog...

...for breaking news!!!

("ahem" -- in my best newscasting voice--)

::: This is Rachel reporting in on Bethany's blog -- since I have the password [smile], and I since I figure she's too modest to share the news. But I'm just as happy as I can be for this dear sister of mine and hope you will share in the joy!!! So now, on to the news.... :::

Yesterday afternoon Bethany opened her photography course material as usual -- only to find this special and rare award! As the Dean of the college writes,

"Every week hundreds of student Photo Projects arrive at NYI. Every week our teachers look at thousands of student photographs. Over the course of a year our staff reviews tens of thousands of student photographs.

Each week, perhaps ten to twelve student Photo Projects are forwarded to my office for review and consideration for a possible Merit Award. Some of those don't meet our high standards and hence they do not receive an Award.

Your project, however, was selected. You should be proud. It's a rare honor."

So, with my warmest congrats -- keep up the good work, Bethany!

"Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might."Ecc. 9:10

::: Thank you, ladies and gentlemen, for your attention. :::

Thursday, July 12, 2007

No better work

"There is no work better than to please God;
to pour water,
to wash dishes,
to be a cobbler,
or an apostle,
all are one;
to wash dishes and to preach are all one,
as touching the deed,
to please God."

- William Tyndale

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Thank you!

At times like these I seem to have the hardest time using words to tell how I feel, but at the same time I think I am going to try...

A big thank you to all of you who in some way participated to make my birthday special. Whether it was a cheery blog comment, a card in the mail, making my all time favorite meals, a phone call, an e-card, spending the day with me -- I had a very blessed 21st birthday, and can't wait to see what the Lord has planned for me this next year!

Sometimes people are heard to say "Oh the Lord just gets better and better as the days go by!" But no, the Lord never changes! HE IS ALWAYS GOOD. It's just that we as people get to know Him better and better! I know I still have a lot to learn yet, but one thing I do know: God is good. All the time. Yes, there are sure to be trials, sorrows and tests down my path of life , but knowing this, I am still truly excited about living my life for my King. Oh how I love Him!

But back to yesterday...

My cousin Nicole was able to come, and she brought her amazing bead collection -- letting us create all sorts of fun bracelets and girly stuff!

Thank you, Nicole! I love you and am so thankful we're cousins!
(Even when we didn't want to be!)

Gotta' love the feminine touch!

And of course....chocolate! For those wondering what the big thing with chocolate is....I am definitely the chocolate lover of the family. Knowing me, that is something that seems to surface very fast!

One more random fact: the family joke is that my eyes are so dark because of the chocolate I eat, and that I need to keep eating chocolate to maintain the color.

Savoring the moments, treasuring the memories...

Wherever you are, be all there. Live to the hilt every situation you believe to be the will of God.
Jim Elliot

Me and one of my best-est friends!

"O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together!
O taste and see that the Lord is good:
blessed is the man that trusteth in Him
Psalms 34:3, 8

Pressing forward

Let this be thy whole endeavor,
this thy prayer,
this thy desire ---

that thou mayest be stripped of all selfishness, and with entire simplicity follow Jesus only.

-Thomas 'a Kempis

"...forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus."

Phillippians 3:13-14

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Peace the deliberate adjustment of my life to the will of God.

"Let the peace of God rule in your hearts..."
Colossians 3:15

[peace: quietness, rest, SET AT ONE AGAIN]

Pure fun

Every great once in a while, (as in -- maybe once a year!) various family members gather around our table for a rousing game of "Balderdash." Given an unheard of word, it is amazing to find out what creative, ingenious, and crazy definitions the human mind can come up with in a relatively short time.

To test your word skills (and add a little humor!) I've posted just a few of the samplings...anyone care to guess the correct meanings?! (or who wrote the incorrect ones? [grin])


-- a sea plant that grows in the Indian ocean
--when one hosts a party, wherein the invited people are from various nationalities
--to mold a roman candle holder
--to take something from a mashed state and make it solid again
--to net, entangle or to entrap


--tardy, late, to go somewhere
--the repeating of calling out, as in beckoning someone more than once
--a club that is used over in Africa to beat grain
--a frog in South Africa whose skin is covered in red warts
--a three sting violin, not much used
--the happenings surrounding the time when the House of Represenativeves and the Senate attempt to change a bill that was vetoed from the presidend of the USA
--a small island off the coast of South America that is always bearing fruit


--a way to cool iron so as to make it soft
--to agree to something requested of one
--the first month in the Jewish calender
--a hand knitted tablecloth made in the late 1800's
--to be extremely frustrated


--the disease in which you toenails fall out due to lack of calcium
--when one's case is sentenced by a judge, only to have the defendant take his case to a higher court
--a list of the more important and unusual words in a language
--an overweight Norwegian matchmaker who always dresses in silk and rides a cart pulled by goats


--a tool people use to tighten the cinch for a camel saddle
--an overcoat worn to protect Andorran soldiers escape rat bites on cold December mornings
--an attitude that was supposedly put on by ladies of the upper class during the Victorian Era
--to insult, a joke
--excess weight carried on the hips of women past 50
--a crotchety old person who is in the habit of saving all their aluminum foil

Friday, July 06, 2007

1 Timothy 6:6

"Godliness with contentment is great gain."

True contentment is a real, even an active, virtue---not only affirmative but creative. It is the power of getting out of any situation all there is in it."

- G.K. Chesterton

Thursday, July 05, 2007


Photography is about capturing life the way your heart sees it.

-Mike Colon

4th of July --

Seward style!

The day started at 7:00am with a fun run for the athletic type:

All four of my brothers and Elizabeth entered the race --
what fun it was cheering them on!
Andrew finishing the 10K with Caleb -- who after running it himself went back to spur Andrew on, part of that being this shirt he made to surprise Andrew!!

Way to go, guys!

A whole group from our church participated -- some ran the 10K, but most stuck with the 2-mile.

Water fights -- the fireman way!

Just look at 'em blow!


"Thou are my hope, O Lord God:
Thou are my trust."
Psalms 71:5


Don't you think we have good taste?!
(Hope you don't mind Britt! I couldn't resist!)
For all of you who want to see the sensible picture, check out her post here!


-- the hillside was full of families in anticipation for the fireworks! --

It was such a fun display -- one of the best parts being that we were able to sit down and watch them, visiting and catching up with what everyone had seen and done that day. And to realize -- it is already over until next year!

"I will love thee, O Lord, my strength." Psalms 18:1

Thank You, Lord, for the blessings of a country with a Christian heritage and for those who have sacrificed for the freedoms we enjoy today. Thank you for Your Word, for family and friends, and for a time to enjoy it all!

A be-lated happy 4th of July to you all!