Awards (YOU are awarded!)

Thank you to God's Girl for awarding me! That was very sweet!

Now, first offly :), I'm not always for the whole "award" thing because I think it can make people feel left out, yadayadayada. BUT, I thought this would be fun, and since God created all girls lovely and beautiful, I award all three to YOU! Yes, you! Whoever you are! Because God made you so special and unique <3. You don't have to do this, but I think it would be cool if when you post these on your blog you award them to all girls too! Because God made us all unique in our own special ways :-)!













Now, here are the "rules"...(although I don't always follow the "awards" rule, so let's call them suggestions. That doesn't mean to defy your parents' rules!)

~List 7 random things about yourself
~Award 15 bloggers (we already covered that I'm awarding you all!)
~Post these rules (haha, that's ironic)

Here are the seven random things about myself:
1. I. Love. Pascal. Teehee :-). He is just so cute! I love him!
(look, they move! I don't remember where I got these...maybe Pinterest?)
Hehe...these make me laugh inside...














2. I just bought two clip-in feathers from Walmart for a grand total of under $5.
3. I am strongly against abortion.



















(source)

4. I think the picture below is extremely funny!


5.
6.
7.












(source)

5. My favorite vegetables are cucumber and corn.
6. I know a lot of bloggers are big on "vintage," but I'm actually not. I mean, I think it's pretty, but it's not really my thing.
7. I love "Come to Me" and "Show Jesus" by Jamie Grace.

Don't forget - you're awarded! If you do this^, comment below with the link!
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Give-and-Take

I want to grow closer to God. I want to be so on fire for Him that everything else pales in comparison - all obsessions and idols don't matter, I don't worry what anyone else thinks about me, and I am all about Jesus. I wish this was true, but I'd be lying if I said it was.

The thing is, lately I've been learning that if I want to get closer to God and be on fire for Him, it's a give-and-take thing. I can't just ask, "LORD, make me on fire for you," then keep living the same way. I've got to change what needs to be changed, eliminate other idols or obsessions that is hindering and blocking my walk with Christ, and become all about God in everything I do. Being on fire for God is not a one-sided deal, so don't think that it is. Pray that God would make you on fire for Him if you truly want to be - then do something to make a change.

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"For Good"

Last night, my sister and I were in a variety show, and we sang the duet "For Good" from the Broadway musical "Wicked." Here is a videotape my dad took of our performance..I'm on the left and Haley is on the right..


Have a great day!
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Guest Post by Kiera

Howdy! I'm Kiera. I'm 13 years old, and I love writing, taking pictures, and playing instruments! Recently, I've been learning about creation vs. evolution, and I thought some of it was so interesting that I wanted to share it with y'all! So, let's begin!

{Kiera's blog}
{Kiera's newsletter}






To start, I want to talk about bats. No, not baseball bats, the animal bats! Specifically the brown bat. Most of you have probably heard of echolocation before. Thats what bats use to find mosquitos!! (did you know a bat can rat up to half its weight in mosquitos in one night?)Well, it's basically when the bat lets out a very high pitched sound (it's so high that no human can hear it!), that bounces off of the mosquito and travels back to the bat! The bats ears are SO sensitive, that just by hearing that sound bounce back, it can tell where the insect is, how big it is, AND how fast it's traveling!! But that presents a problem for evolutionists: if bats evolved gradually over time, then how would bats live? Because echolocation is SO complicated, and it's the bats main way of getting food, how would the bat survive while it's echolocation was evolving? It would starve in the process!! I'd say that's pretty good evidence for the Creator! (:

Another amazing thing I wanted to talk about was the giraffe. The giraffe's neck can be up to 10 feet long, and obviously it needs to get blood pumped ALL the way up it's neck to get to the giraffe's brain. But how? Well, the giraffe has an extra large heart that pumps blood 2x stronger than regular animals! But doesn't it seem like if there's so much pressure from his heart traveling up his neck, his head would blow up from the pressure? Well God thought of that, so he put valve type things in its neck so that it could control the pressure when it bends over!! That's just another wonderful thing that God has made!!

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Follow-Up Excerpt

If any of you read this post, it may have seened a bit down-ish. True, that is how the main character (Gwen) is at the beginning of the story, but I don't want to make you think that the whole story is like that. SO...here is another excerpt :-).


Genuine Excerpt Copyright Talia DeAndrea 2011, 2012


I pulled out my treasured journal with tattered pages that smelled the way only old books could smell. I pressed my nose to the cover and inhaled the glorious aroma. I held it at a glance and observed the front cover. Hmm. Not as colorful as it once had been, but definitely loved. This journal was like an old friend. I gently opened the big book, which had been my companion for many years, and turned to a blank page.


Tuesday, November 8th, 2011

Dear Journal,

Even though I've tried to occupy my mind with other thoughts and musings, Bible Study this morning persistently tugs at my thoughts and tries to grab my attention. I can't stop thinking about what Mitch read from the Bible: “For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive in the Spirit.”
I'd had to look up the verse to make sure I got it right.


Debbie described it in a way I'd never thought of before. She said that Jesus died so that we could be saved, or something like that. But that's what I don't get. Why would Jesus die for me? Because I'd be the first to admit that I'm not perfect, and I know there are so many people in the world who do really bad stuff – like murdering, cheating, and whatever that one sin is where somebody leaves their wife or husband for somebody else. I admit that I fight with my siblings more than I ought to. And I admit that I do lie sometimes, and I have cheated occasionally, and I know my thoughts are not always good – is that counted as a “sin”? Now, Journal, I'm not saying that I'm a Christian or anything, because I'm definitely not. Christians are so...so...hypocritical. It's just that I'm confused. I'm searching...searching for answers. And so far I haven't found any. I guess I'll just have to watch and listen hard at Bible Study tomorrow.
Sincerely,

Gwen


I closed my treasured journal and put it back on the shelf. I wouldn't call it a “Place of Honor,” but hopefully Aaron wouldn't suspect that I would keep it in plain sight with my other books. On the very shelf I kept my journal were a few of my favorite reads – Pride and Prejudice, The Hobbit, and Lord of the Rings, plus Alex Rider, which I'd gotten for my birthday but Mom had never let me read because it had language in it.

That very minute, Mom called my name loudly from the kitchen. “Gwen! Come here! Good news!” Oh, no. Mom's idea of good news usually wasn't the same as my idea of good news. I took my sweet time getting to the kitchen. “Yeah, Mom?” I said. “What's the news?” Mom grinned. “The cousins are coming!” she said. My heart felt like it was beating against my chest. “Which cousins?” Mom smiled. “Who else? The Phillips.” Images of practical jokes, teasing, and harassment fogged my thoughts. This can't be happening, I thought in disbelief. What I wrote about in my book is happening to me! Keisha – my brat cousin – is coming!


Genuine, a Summary:
Meet Gwen Washington. She's an average 14-year-old going through the motions of everyday life. But what her family and friends don't see is that underneath the surface she's feeling lonely - like no one understands her. When a bunch of new groups are started at school, Gwen's mom signs her up for one - much to the dislike of Gwen. The group turns out to be really great and fun, and Gwen is finally feeling like she belongs somewhere. But when her snooty cousin comes to stay with her family, she starts stealing - or messing up - everything that belongs to Gwen. After a terrible accident strikes her family, Gwen will have to put into perspective what really matters, who God is, who SHE is, and who God created her to be.
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A True Prince








When I was younger, I loved Disney princesses. I loved their flowing gowns, fancy hairstyles, and glamorous palaces. If I had had a fairy godmother who could transform me into a princess, I probably would've done it without a second thought. I just adored everything about them.













A big part of every Disney princess's story is the prince. I wasn't too concerned with Derek and Eric and Aladdin (who technically wasn't a prince until he married Jasmine) and the rest of them when I was younger. Sure, they were a nice addition to the story, but I mostly admired the princesses.








The "prince" is often the starring roll in girls' minds today. They desperately want to know who they will marry (if they will marry), what he looks like, what he's doing now - stuff like that. And most girls are thinking of their Prince Charming by now. They want him to be handsome, kind, and daring - always a safe place for them. But many girls find it hard to wait for their Prince Charming...so they don't. They go out on an endless search to find "the one," dating this guy then that one, until they're feeling broken and empty and not at all fulfilled. And a lot (though not all, mind you) of the "princes" out there are not true princes. What qualities does a true prince have, you ask?

A True Prince
~ Loves the LORD with all his heart
~ Loves God more than you
~ Loves you and treats you with the respect you deserve
~ Is a leader

There are a few more things that makes a prince a true prince, but those are the basics. Does that sound like a lot of the guys you have dated or are interested in?













The point is, God is writing your love story. Sure, it may not seem like it, and sure, it may seem like your Prince Charming will NEVER come into your life, but wait for the Lord..wait for God's perfect timing. It will be so much better and more fulfilling if you wait for the love of your life rather than go on a crazy search to find him.













And who knows? Maybe God's plan for you doesn't include marriage. Whether it does or it doesn't, trust in God's plan, and wait for Him to bring your true prince - the one He has already picked out for you - into your life. He's writing your love story.










{all pictures SOURCE}
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Genuine Excerpt

Today I was reading over a bit of my novel that I wrote during NaNoWriMo 2011, Genuine. I don't think I'm gonna publish the book or anything, but I thought I'd let y'all read a small excerpt.

Genuine Excerpt, Copyright © Talia DeAndrea 2011, 2012

HAWAII DREAMER

Subject: Book Covers and Masks


Ever heard the term, “Don't judge a book by its cover”? I don't know about you, but sometimes I pick up a book off the library shelf, see its hideous cover, and quickly place it back. But then my mother forces me to read said book for school, and it turns out to be the best book I've ever read.

I often feel like a book cover. No, I don't feel like a literal book cover, but in an allegorical sense I do. I feel like who I am on the outside – my cover – is so different from who I am on the inside – the pages. I'm the type of girl that people think they've got pinned. They think they know everything about me – they think they know who I am. But, in truth, they don't. No one does. And that's the way I want it. Because if they knew who I am and how lonely I really am, they'd try to fix it...fix me. And I don't think anyone can fix my loneliness. So why should they try, and why should I let them try?

True, I have friends. Not many, but the few I have are good friends. But sometimes they are so clueless to the fact that I wear a mask. No, the quiet, shy, not-very-smart girl they like to hang with isn't really who I am. I'm really a girl who's bursting with creativity, who's really smart, and is dying to say what she believes. But I'm scared to tell anyone that that's more me than the “me” they see and think they know. Does that make sense? I'm scared because I can never be myself around them, and they'll be disappointed in me. I'm scared of what they'll think of me. I'm scared of what I'll think of me once my “secret identity” is out. I'm scared that they'll be super angry that I lied to them for so long. I'm scared that I will feel even more “not good enough” than I do now.

I'm sorry this post is a vent-post, but I needed to get it out somewhere that's safe. And Hawaii Dreamer is about the only place that is.

**IMPORTANT NOTE: there was some confusion. Just to be clear, Gwen is a completely different person from me, and this is written from her point of view, not mine. I have the best family, friends, and GOD in the world, and I know where my worth comes from :-) (Gwen doesn't figure out where her worth comes from until later in the book). Sorry for any confusion**
What do you think? Check out my NaNoWriMo profile here.
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His Purpose

Rarely do I take the time to tell God just how thankful I am for all that He has blessed me with. I look around at my life and certain experiences that have happened in it, and I become overwhelmed with the thought of how blessed I am, even when times are tough. Sometimes I look back at obstacles and times where I doubted God, and now I realize that He knew what He was doing all along, and He placed that obstacle in my life for a reason. The other day I was reading a past journal entry-slash-prayer that took place two days before my sister was due to leave for Africa. At the time, she was sick. I didn't get it, because God had provided all the funds for her trip, all the support, and all the resources, and now, two days before she was due to leave, she was sick. Do you blame me for being confuzzled? In the prayer I vented to God, and, basically, I doubted Him, asking, "Why isn't Haley better?" During the next two days, Haley recovered and set out on her mission trip.

At the time, I couldn't see what God was doing. But later I realized that I didn't have to doubt Him. I realized that I should just trust Him and let Him take the reigns of my life, take the worries of my life, and carry my burdens, and He won't let me down.

Sometimes God's plan is different from what we have in mind. My family most definitely experienced this firsthand with the adoption of my little sister, Fasika. On our papers, we had originally put down that we wanted an infant. We were assigned with an adorable little girl named Fasika - supposedly under eight months old. Not long after, we found out that there had been a mess-up with the paperwork and that Fasika was older than the age range we originally wanted (she was actually over a year old). Well, we decided to stick with Fasika, because we already loved her and we felt that it was God's plan, and we have never regretted it. Now, we cannot even imagine life with Fasika. She is such a beautiful, fun, silly, sweet, precious little girl that God definitely brought into our life. Even though we didn't get an Ethiopian baby the age we originally wanted, God knew what we needed - Fasika. And now we all love her so, so much (we did the moment we knew her name, too), and we can't imagine life without her.

I love the Bible verse Jeremiah 29:11-13. It says:

"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart."

God has a good plan for each of our lives - not a plan to hurt us. Even if He allows bad things to happen - like Haley getting sick - something good can come out of it, and He can deliver us from it.

So be thankful...even for the trials you are going through. Who knows? Maybe God is using the trials in your life for a greater purpose that will draw you closer to Him. And what could be better than that?

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GREAT NEWS!

This was too exciting not to share! It could've only been God!

Kara has done extremely well today! She did PT, OT and Speech Therapy and had lots and lots of visitors all day long. She really enjoyed all of you. Plus we got super fabulous news from her doctor. The MRI of her brain was perfect! The doctor was absolutely amazed that it showed no damage. He cannot explain it considering the time she went without oxygen. Also he said he looked very carefully at the print out of her heart rhythm from the CPR done in the field. He said it was "textbook perfect"! That was also amazing! He said that a classroom trained group could not have done it better.
We gave God all the glory and know God answered all the faithful prayers of the students and adults at the CYIA Party to provide just the right people to do the CPR on Kara.

We told the doctor about all the people all over the world who are praying for Kara and also thanked him for all the wonderful care he and the other staff have given.

Kara continues to be confused at times but converses very sweetly with everyone.

 Kara is taking some solid foods today. She's had applesauce, mandarin oranges, jello, apple juice, popsicle, a little bit of pancakes and scrambled eggs.

Fallon Kinkead will be staying with Kara tonight so Ward and I and my mother can get some sleep in our beds tonight.  We are very tired but are a very happy tired.  = )

Love,

Linda





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11 Things Tag

This is a tag from Destiny. You're supposed to tell 11 random things about yourself, answer the 11 Q's the tagger set by the tagger, make up 11 new Q's, tag 11 people (or however many you want :-)) and let them know on their blog. So, 11 random things about me...

(1) I don't like to watch people eat cereal.
(2) I'd rather be really cold than really hot.
(3) I get Clubouse magazine (and love it :-)).
(4) I have about a hundred pictures/posters in my room.
(5) I like to wath gymnastics but not DO gymnastics.
(6) I'm a writer, butI'm not very good at keeping up on journaling.
(7) I love Pascal from Tangled. I have a stuffed animal of him :-).
(8) I am homeschooled and love it :-).
(9) I am saving my first kiss for marriage.
(10) Pasta is delish.
(11) I don't like the smell or taste of coffee or tea (except iced tea:)).

Questions from Destiny...
1. Silk or Plush? Plush
2. Favorite Book series? Real Life by Nancy Rue
3. Do you wear your hair up or down most of the time? Equal :-).
4. Bacon... do you like it? Yes.
5. Favorite quote? Ohwow, I have too many. But this is definitely one of my faves: "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannog lose." - Jim Elliot
6. Marker, crayon, or colored pencil? Marker
7. How many letters are in your full name? Let me count...13.
8. Got a celebrity crush? Honestly, nope :-).
9.  Mustache or Beard? Uh...I don't know..
10. Converse or Sneakers? Converse.
11. Hot summer days or Snow filled mornings? Both!

My questions for you...
(1) Favorite movie?
(2) Most tolerable kids' TV show?
(3) Favorite number?
(4) Top 3 favorite hobbies?
(5) Favorite dessert?
(6) Pie...apple or pumpkin?
(7) Favoritw Bible verse?
(8) A cause you care about?
(9) A name you love.
(10) Favorite Bible story and why?
(11) Favorite Bible character and why?

I tag anyone who wants to do it :-).



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Aw, Shucks

100 followers!!! Woot! Thank you guys soooo much...and a shoutout to Janine for being the 100th follower!

I will be hosting a giveaway soon, but first I'd like a few more sponsors..anyone interested?

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One More? Please?

Hey girls,
(*random note - this is my 401st post :-)*)
What are you all up to today?
As you can see on the sidebar, I have 99 lovely followers! 99! Thanks sooo much. Y'all are sweet :-). I'm planning on having a big giveaway once I reach 100 followers..so, does somebody (pretty please) wanna make my day and be the 100th follower? :)

Kara is doing well - thank you all so much for praying! You can get more updates here:
caringbridge.org/visit/karasiert

Please keep her in your prayers!

Oh, and don't forget to enter the New Year Give-it-away! The link is above.

God bless you!

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Doing Better...

This update was on Kara's site. To keep getting updates visit caringbridge.org/visit/karasiert


Better encouraging news!
Kara is doing better. Praise God. She is still in a critical condition. But as they have slowly weaned down the deep sedation she is opening her eyes (blurry) and obeyed some of Linda's commands! She is able to move her legs and arms some! She also is getting a little annoyed with the tube in her throat, which I am glad that she is, you don't want them laying there happy to be intubated. She has developed a fever and climbed way up to 103.6 this afternoon. They drew cultures of her blood and tubes, changed to a different ABX, got some Tylenol and now resting better at 100-101. The breathing machine is only giving her 12 breaths a minute and she is breathing on her own the other 4-8 a minute...this is also very encouraging. WE are Completely exhausted but feeling encouraged here in Omaha with how Kara is responding. We hope and pray this continues. The docs and nurses have been great. 
Read Journal History    Sign My Guestbook   Read Tributes
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Update

God is so awesome! Kara is a week ahead of where the doc thought she would be!! Praise God! Please keep Kara and her family in your prayers!


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Mix of Emotions

I've had a mix of emotions in the past couple of days.

Yesterday I spent the night at a friend's house, which was fun.

Yesterday and today it snowed for the first time this/last year, which was pretty exciting.

Today I found out that one of my best friends is in the hospital, and I am really scared about that (pleeeease be praying! see here)

I saw a verse the other day that I think God really wanted me to see. It has been really helping me today:

Psalm 68:19
Praise be to the LORD, our God and Savior, who daily bears our burdens.

I know God is our healer and He can definitely heal Kara. He is the one who kept her safe. It is incredibly reassuring to know that God daily bears our burdens.
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URGENT PRAYER REQUEST

I need to ask for prayer for one of my closest friends, Kara. See here: caringbridge.org/visit/karasiert


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He Carries Our Burdens

We all go through trials. Some are worse than others, yet they are all difficult. Maybe your grandma died. Maybe your sister is bossing you around or your brother is annoying you. Maybe you're not feeling good about yourself. We all have those days.

I found out two days ago that one of my dear, close friends is moving a couple hours away. I was shocked and sad to hear the news. Today I read a Bible verse that I thought was just awesome and amazing. Here it is:

Psalm 68:19
Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens.

It is so comforting to know that God will always carry our burdens - no matter the size.
I read this quote in the book "A Young Woman After God's Own Heart" by Elizabeth George:

But this you must remember,
This one thing you must know...
I cannot take your burden
Until you let it go.

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Give-it-away Button

Apparently the "New Year Give-it-away" button code wasn't working, so those of you entering who said "put your blog button my sidebar," here it is for you to try again.



Have a great week!
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Inspire Me

This is what I call bliss.





















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(all pictures via)

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Girlz Like You Interview: Alyssa F., 13 (and a little announcement)























(Check out more Girlz Like You Interviews here)


Tell us a little bit about yourself.
My name is Alyssa, I am thirteen years old and in the eighth grade. I have gone to a public school all my life. I have naturally curly hair and the only one in the family with blonde hair and blue eyes. I have two amazing parents, and a little sister named Sarah. We own a cute, little Miniature Dachshund named Minnie. I love to dance, and took dance classes for 8 years. I also am a huge fan of Christian music. My desire for my life is to grow as close as I can to the Lord!

What are your hobbies? Dancing, singing, reading, writing, emailing, and listening to music.

When did you get saved?
I got saved a couple of years ago (around 11 years old).

What is your favorite Bible verse and why?
My favorite Bible verse is John 3:16 because it states God's whole plan of salvation, and the love that He has for each of us.

Tell us about your newsletter, Guided by Grace.
Guided by Grace is a Christian e-newsletter that was started after the original one, Christian Crew. It is designed to encourage and help other teenage girls with their relationship with God. It features at least one or two devotionals, pages made by the readers, and poems/stories/articles.

What is your main goal for your newsletter?
The main goal for the newsletter is to, again, encourage and help teenage girls with their relationship with God.

When the going gets tough, what do you do?
Well, I strive to trust in the Lord and pray when the going gets tough. But often times it is difficult. I mainly try to live by (and focus on ) in difficult times Proverbs 3:5-6. It states "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight."

What is your favorite thing about God?
Well, I like everything about Him, but I would have to say my favorite thing would be the amount of love He has for us.





















What is one way that God has gifted you?
I believe God has gifted me in many ways, but especially with the amazing family and friends that I have! They are truly a blessing!

What is your favorite way to serve the LORD?
My favorite way to serve the LORD would definitely be through my writing.(especially my newsletters). I love to create the newsletters, not only knowing that I am strengthening girls' relationships with the Father, but that I am pleasing and serving the Lord.

What is your view on modesty?
I believe modesty is really important. Not only does God not want us showing off parts of our sacred and holy bodies, but He wants us to cover them up completely and save ourselves for our future husband. We need to remember that every part of our lives, even the clothes we wear, should glorify and please God.

What is your view on purity?
Along with modesty, I think purity is also extremely important. God wants us to remain pure for (again) our future husbands, not give a little to different guys until eventually you have nothing to look forward to with your husband! I believe it is definitely important to remain pure until we find the right guy and marry him!

What is your view on courtship?
Courtship is definitely a matter to discuss with your family, but I think it is surely a smart idea and something that will result good. I also don't think dating is a bad idea, as long as you keep to good standards and remain pure, and keep any relationship glorifying to God.

Are you waiting for God to bring the right guy into your life? Explain why or why not.
Yes, I am waiting for God to bring the right guy into my life because God's plan is perfect, so I know that He will send the right husband at the right time! I just have to wait for it.

What is one thing God has taught you in 2011?
In 2011, I have learned that a good relationship with God cannot exist without time in the Word and consistent prayer.

What are some of your goals for the new year?
Well, I have to say that my top goals for this year is to grow even more in my relationship with God, and read the Bible and/or spend time with God daily.

Do you have any advice for girls on faith, friends, and life?
Though life may get hard and it may seem like everything is falling apart, always remember that God will be there for you, and that you can trust in Him and talk to Him in any situation. As for friends, some may stay in your life forever, some may stay for a while, and some may even stay for a short time, but remember each and every one is there for a reason, and all to help you grow in some kind of a way! Just remember to give all friendships the glory to God.

Thank you so much for doing this interview for us!

(All pictures courtesy Alyssa and her family)

And now for the little announcement...

Right now while I'm posting this, I have 94 followers. If Girlz of God can at least 100 followers (that's 6 more), I will host a 100 followers giveaway! So, if you want :), tell your friends, post on your blog. This will be a giveaway not to be missed :-).
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I Refuse

I heard this song by Josh Wilson on the radio the other day and found it really fascinating. Check it out:



I Refuse

Sometimes I just want to close my eyes
And act like everyone's alright
When I know they're not
This world needs God, but it's easier to stand and watch
I could pray a prayer and just move on
Like nothing's wrong

But I Refuse

I don't want to live like I don't care
I don't want to say another empty prayer
Oh, I refuse to sit around and wait for someone else
To do what God has called me to do myself
I could choose not to move
But I refuse

I can hear the least of these, crying out so desperately
And I know we are the hands and feet of You, oh God
So if You say move, it's time for me to follow through
And do what I was made to do
And show them who You are

I don't want to live like I don't care
I don't want to say another empty prayer
Oh, I refuse to sit around and wait for someone else
To do what God has called me to do myself
I could choose not to move
But I refuse

I refuse to stand and watch the weary and lost cry out for help
I refuse to turn my back and try and act like all is well
I refuse to stay unchanged, to wait another day to die to myself
I refuse to make one more excuse

I don't want to live like I don't care
I don't want to say another empty prayer
Oh, I refuse to sit around and wait for someone else
To do what God has called me to do myself
I could choose not to move
But I refuse

This song really stands out to me. Many times I feel a tug to reach out to a person I see, be an encouragement to them, tell them that God loves them...but I'm afraid. I'm afraid of what people will think of me. I'm scared of giving them a bad impression of Christianity. I'm lazy. And so I pray that God would send someone to witness to that person. I know, that is so lame. But I do that.

But you know what I say? Enough of that. This song totally describes what I want. Just reading the lyrics to the song I am appalled.

I don't want to live like I don't care
I don't want to say another empty prayer
Oh, I refuse to sit around and wait for someone else
To do what God has called me to do myself
I could choose not to move
But I refuse

It's time for me to move, for me to reach out and do what God wants me to do, not just waiting for the next winter retreat, the next camp, to get close with God. The time is now, and this is what I need to do.

I refuse to stand and watch the weary and lost cry out for help
I refuse to turn my back and try and act like all is well
I refuse to stay unchanged, to wait another day to die to myself
I refuse to make one more excuse

The time for excuses is long gone. In fact, I don't think it was even ever here. No more excuses. I want to love God with all that I am and give my life completely to Him.

I don't want to live like I don't care. I don't want to say another empty prayer. I refuse to sit around and wait for someone else to do what God has called me to do myself.

I could choose not to move, but I refuse.
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New Year Give-it-away

*This giveaway was originally intended to be a Christmas give-it-away, but turned into a New Year's give-it-away :-).*

**ALL PRIZES SHIP U.S. ONLY. I'M SORRY FOR ANY INCONVENIENCE.**

I don't know about you, but during the Christmas season, I'm thinking mostly about myself and the presents I will get. Selfish as it is, it's true. I know many other girls can relate to that. I also know that many people spend their Christmas and New Year alone, or without any gifts at all, or maybe some people just need a little brightening and a little glimmer of hope in their day. The thought of those people inspired me to host a Girlz of God...

New Year Give-it-away!



This giveaway is a little bit like other giveaways. The only catch is, you are entering to win a prize that you will give away to someone who could use a smile and a glimmer of hope. Although I can't monitor whether you keep the prize or give it away, the point of this giveaway is to win it to give it, you know? I highly encourage you to give the prize away to someone (or buy something with the prize for someone else - more about that later). Here are a couple of ideas for giving (these are all optional, of course)...

(1) Give it to someone who is TOTALLY not expecting it. (maybe the girl you can't stand, the old man down the street that sits in his rocking chair on the front porch, that lady that is about to have a baby at your church, etc.)
(2) Do it anonymously. It will feel great.
(3) Attach a card to the gift that tells about Christ and His love. You could tell them you are praying for them, include a fun little paper game like a crossword puzzle or sudoku, and include Bible verses.

If you win one of the prizes below, we would love to hear what you did with it and what the response of the person was. Please, for safety reasons, don't use any names. Talk about how giving it away made you feel, if you learned something in the process, and what you think GOD thinks about giving to those who need hope.

Now, on to the prizes...

$10 credit to Beau-Nanza donated by Sarah.

Beau-Nanza sells a variety of cute bows and adorable key fobs.









Is that not adorable? I don't have keys, and I want one! LOL! I couldn't find a pic on the facebook page, but I have a New Orleans Saints bow that's really cute :-). Something from Beau-Nanza would be a great, sweet little gift to give away.


This set of friendship bracelets donated by Kara L. You could keep one and give it to a friend! Aren't they pretty?












And, last but not least, any one item of your choice from Emma Margaret Designs!

Emma Margaret sells a variety of cute little items. This would make a perfect gift for someone in need of a smile! Here are a couple of the items she has at her shop.

















Flower Head Band.

















Pretty Little Clipboard

















Colorful Flower Bracelet

...and much more! :-)

So how can you have a chance to win one of these prizes to give away? Here's how...


Mandatory: Tell me who you would give this to if you won and why (please don't use names, though).

Extra Entries (all worth 1 entry) (please leave one comment for each separate entry):
~Follow Girlz of God
~Follow Emma Margaret's blog, Everyday Emma
~Post about this giveaway on your blog
~Email a friend about this giveaway (no extra entries for extra friends)
~Put the giveaway button on your sidebar
~Go to Emma Margaret Designs and comment your favorite item with a link
~Go to Beau-Nanza and comment your favorite item with a link
~Subscribe to Sarah's e-newsletter, The Mission Mag
~Comment your favorite Bible verse

PLEASE LEAVE SOME WAY TO FOR ME TO CONTACT YOU IN EVERY COMMENT (either blog address, etsy account, or email).

You have until January 31st to enter. The random drawing will (hopefully) be held and winners announced on February 1st.

That's it :)! Start the comments! :D
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etiquette and such

Girlz of God Copyright Talia DeAndrea 2010, 2011, 2012. "Genuine," "Girlz of God," and "Tania's Faith" book excerpts Copyright Talia DeAndrea 2010, 2011, 2012. All pictures Copyright Talia DeAndrea, unless otherwise noted. Please do not steal or copy anything on this blog without my permission. Thank you :-).

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