It's been awhile since I've shared about some of my favorite things, and technically, you'll only see 4 categories on this post...but there are a ton of really, really good things buried within. There are so many BIG changes happening in our lives, and while these days absolutely qualify as my favorites, it's been hard to find the time to sit down and share with you all about it!
For starters, we're having a BABY!! Our sweet, sweet baby girl will be here in August, and we cannot wait to welcome the joy she will bring into our lives. We also just closed on a farm two weeks ago, and I anticipate there being lots and lots to talk about in the future as we transition from the city to the quiet countryside.
It's true; we are blessed, and it isn't lost on us that we have the responsibly to use what we have been given for God's glory, which is exactly what we intend to do! We're excited for the changes, and I can't wait to share them with you as they come.
In the meantime, I was FINALLY able to sit down and write for a bit to share with you some of my favorite things from over the past few months and I believe you will find lots to love here! From one of the best Amazon gift lists I've ever created which includes the coveted 30-ounce Stanley cup, the most-loved Olaplex conditioner to keep your hair shiny and soft all summer long, a floating bluetooth speaker perfect for the swimming pool, the cutest Turkish beach towel, and so much more--this list is truly the BEST of the best of summer finds from Amazon. So check them out, and then, check out my top recipes of the past couple of months like Tieghan Gerard's Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake and the most delicious Vanilla Brioche French Toast with my very own Wild Blueberry & Lavender Jam. Whatever you find, I am certain it will be something you love.
1. Summer Amazon Finds
Shop the Photo:
18-Piece Dinnerware for 6
2. Recipes I am Loving
Tieghan Gerard is one of my most favorite recipe creators on the planet. I have made recipe after recipe of hers, and not one of them has been a disappointment. Literally everything she makes deserves 5 stars! This Salty Pretzel Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake is no exclusion. It's like a cross between banana pudding and a banana sundae with a splash of honey-toasted salted pretzels and vanilla wafers. YUMMMM!!!
You can find Tieghan's original recipe here, or scroll a little further to see the recipe cards on this page. Either way, I cannot wait for you to try this Ice Cream Cake!!
This Vanilla Brioche French Toast with Blueberry Lavender Preserves and Homemade Whipped Cream keeps coming back as a favorite because it is soo very good. I could eat it any time of the year, but when it's warm outside, this recipe is everything! It is made with one of our very own from the Galloway Grazes Botanicals Jams Collection, and if our Wild Blueberry with Lavender Jam isn't enough to do the trick, then maybe our delicious, creamy homemade whipped cream will!! Add a dash of cinnamon to it, and you're in for a real treat!
Crowder, Dante Bowe - God Really Loves Us ft. Maverick City Music
And this is our hope. The cross, it has spoken. Death is no more. Christ is the Lord. Oh, this is our hope, yeah.
We love this song so much because of the simple message that we no longer have to fear death because of the love of Jesus, and that's such a beautiful gift! Give it a listen and add it to your daily playlist. You'll be glad you did!!
Brandon Lake- Gratitude
All my words fall short. I got nothing new How could I express all my gratitude? So I throw up my hands, and praise You again and again. 'Cause all that I have is a hallelujah Hallelujah. And I know it's not much, but I've nothing else fit for a King, except for a heart singing hallelujah. Hallelujah.
This is always one of my favorite parts of my blog. In all honesty, this is the part I believe life is all about...the memories. And, I hope that one day, possibly even when you're sitting in the very same place I am now--at your computer's keyboard looking back at the first year you've lived without someone you loved dearly--I hope you find an entire library of happy memories from which you can remove a new one "off the shelf" on demand and reminisce on all the blessings this life can offer.
It's been nearly a year since my sweet dad beat cancer for the final day. I know that might sound strange, but I like to view his entire battle with cancer as something he fought--and beat--daily. For 5 1/2 years, he worked, he celebrated the life he had, and he gave his siblings and his children more good times to remember than we ever thought we'd have. If you ask me, that's the definition of winning.
I miss him. I miss my mom, too. I am about to bring their grandchild into this world, and my parents won't get to know her, which is a hard pill to swallow. But, at the same time, I am blessed because I have no doubt in my mind that Ruth will know my parents by the lifetime of memories they've given me to share with her.
I say all of this to encourage everyone reading to not waste any time. Your children will know you by the things you do and by the things you choose not to do. It doesn't need to be an expensive vacation to be special; in fact, it's the habits you form on a day-to-day basis that will stick with them more.
Eat meals as a family. Pray together. Let the kids help you cook, and make it fun. Play board games with them. Let them see you as kind, hospitable...genuine. One day, they will look back on these things and they will know you as the greatest blessing in their lives in the same way I know my parents as two of the greatest blessings in mine.