Sunday, December 27, 2015

Friday, December 11, 2015

My Travels in the City of Quebec || PART I



It's unfortunate. I had all these great plans for Christmasy/holiday posts this season. It was my intention to get back into a semi-regular posting schedule on the blog. Alas, life decided I had better things to do. It is now December 11, and I don't have a single Christmas/holiday post in the Que. So it goes.


But despite not having any holiday posts pre-planned, I will be posting a few posts of my time here in Quebec (which are decently holiday themed because Canada does Christmas pretty darn well). I am here in this pleasant, but chilly, European city as a kind of mini vacation (even though I still have school and work to do). So the photos below are a few of my travelings and sightseeing thus far. And it is my sincere intention to get a few more photo/descriptive posts of Quebec up in the next few days. 




For any European (and specifically French) lovers, Quebec is a great city to visit. It's decidedly European with it's old, Gothic architecture and it's quaint little shops and homemade treats. It's also very Maine-ish, with it's Maple everything and it's numerous options of plaids, boots, scarves, hats 'n such.


Also, did you know that Canadians here in Quebec legitimately speak MOSTLY French. I mean I know Canada has a huge French influence, but most everything here is in French. Don't get me wrong, I am not complaining. I like a good challenge, and I like the feeling that I am in Europe. But if I had known, I could have at least brushed up a little on my French or even have brought a small French/English dictionary with me. My over-planning side is yelling at me right now. Ah well. Tis grand to be here, French communication barrier 'n all.


Au Revoir!

All Text and All Images © 2015 Footprints in the Sand

Friday, December 4, 2015

All the Finals


Well then, it's THAT time of the year again. F I N A L S. Which means: 

no sleep
all the stress
no social life 
or maybe more of a social life because you are procrastinating so much
all the procrastination
and simply not enough time


In light of all the "joys" this finals season brings, I'd like to share with you 

I know I don't have all the answers, but I have some helpful advice on how to kick these finals ... because I've been there 10+ times. 

So high schooler or college student, go get 'em!


All Text and All Images © 2015 Footprints in the Sand

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

YOU'RE INVITED || A Ratty & Mole Christmas



Helloooo all! I am so excited to announce a collaboration of the dear Rachel of Inkpen Authoress and I, called:

Here's a bit on what it's all about:
We (Rachel and I) both love Christmas, and creating, and giving, and thought it right to create a place where bloggers (and folks) from all over could come and participate in a Christmas gift swap. 
The name Ratty & Mole came about because the relationship between Ratty & Mole is a most splendid one. So simple and loyal, filled with adventure and wonder, with life and cherishing each day. And Moley and I both would like this gift swap to emulate the very giving, joyful, wonder-filled qualities that the Ratty & Mole relationship has.
Rachel and I have dubbed ourselves as Mole and Ratty (respectively), ever since we had our very Wind in the Willows picnic last year


So, a very Ratty & Mole Christmas Gift Swap was created. And if you were wondering about there being both a Ratty & Mole Gift Swap and a Ratty & Mole Christmas, that's because the R&M Gift Swap part is the title of the main website, and leaves room for other RM gift swap opportunities (which extends beyond just Christmas). And then the R&M Christmas bit is specifically for, well, Christmas time. So there you have it.

We'd just love it if you'd join us in this merrymaking and Christmas giving. All the DETAILS can be found here.

And if you have any questions, email RMGiftSwap@gmail.com.

I do hope you'll participate!

Sincerely,
Ratty, aka
All Text and All Images © 2015 Footprints in the Sand

Friday, October 30, 2015

Refuse to Be AVERAGE

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9


My second half semester classes started this week. I am not over-the-moon excited about this, but I am looking forward to the challenge I know this semester will bring. I've also accepted another part-time job, so I'll be putting in a good 50+ hours a week of work, and then there's school, volunteer, and so forth

Ah life, you never cease to surprise me.

The above images are a collaboration of much of what goes on in my head these days. Also, yes, you may think it strange I have both the words Humble and Brilliant. But I think there is a place for both, just as both are equally inspiring to me. Humility is an essential aspect of the Christian life, and a virtue we will struggle with for the rest of our lives. And being brilliant, for me, doesn't mean I'm going to be ridiculously smart and marvelous and everyone will love me. Rather, brilliant to me means that I will try my very best and give all I have to be the very best me I can be. Brilliant is a motivational word. 

Then there are the images of the sea and books. Two things I have great affection for. And then of course the photo of some European country in the wintertime (which combines travel + winter/Christmas, 2 more things I greatly cherish). 

And then the quote in the middle, by A.W. Tozer, that kind of pulls the whole collage together:

"REFUSE to be AVERAGE.
LET your heart SOAR
as it WILL."

I am not average, and I have never pretended to be. I don't like most of the things kids my age like. I am not doing the traditional 4-year school on campus gig. I work 3 jobs to save and pay for school, all on my own. I wake up every morning and have to remind myself of the promises of God to give me the strength and courage to get through to the next day. There are days where I can only take it 1 hour, 1 minute at a time. I am no hero, and I don't want to be. But I know what living is, and I want you to know what living is and what it means to live every. single. minute. with purpose. 

No, this is not me telling you to be like me or do what I do. You don't have to work 3 jobs to know what it means to live fully. But I would like to challenge you to reassess what it is you're living for and fighting for. 

Take a moment and answer these questions:
What gets you up in the morning?
What keeps you going when the going gets tough?
What are you doing with your time?
What drives you?

Remember that greatness is a lot of things done well; day after day, workout after workout, obedience after obedience. It doesn't take any effort to be a loser. But it calls on everything in you to harness your will to say I am going to challenge myself. If it was easy, everybody would do it.

Don't be content to be average. Let your heart soar, venture into the unknown, challenge yourself, learn new things, be okay with failing but never quit. 

I'd love to chat with you about what drives you and motivates you to do what you do. You can comment below or email me.


All Text and All Images © 2015 Footprints in the Sand

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

deliciously moody skies, a collection of photographs || PART 1


There is peace
even in the storm.
-Vincent van Gogh, The Letters of Vincent van Gogh









All text and All Images © 2015 Footprints in the Sand

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

of black and white - muses

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9

I've been thinking a lot in black and white lately, in that I've come to the point where I've had to define a lot of areas I thought wouldn't ever actually apply to my life. It's been a good time to step back and reassess much of what I took for granted. My values, morals, and even the little things one rarely thinks about.


I've compiled a collage of B&W muses depicting a lot of what is going through my head just now. Be inspired to rethink those things you take for granted. Know what you believe and why you believe it.

It matters.

1. reminds me of the infinite everything of God. and adventures. and venturing into the unknown, afraid of nothing because He is on our side.
2. the sea reminds me to be brave, venture on wilder seas. face the unknown and conquer my fears. plus, whales.
3. working on some new typography designs. this is some of my musings thus far.
4. inspired by some of my heroes, like winston churchill (shown in photograph), c.s. lewis, g.k. chesterton, and so many others. so much to learn from those who've come before us. plus this photo leads to a link of some of the neatest libraries owned by 15 famous men.
5. because life is always this & ... there's so much room for this and something else, so stay open to plenty of "ands". also, typography is my thing just now.
6. getting my photography game on these days, and this particular image is really inspiring. not sure why exactly, but it just is. also, it's reminding me i'm not a fan of guys just now ... long story.
7. may i never forget this Truth. He died so i could live. what truth. trials and pain have nothing on me, for my life is for Him and Him alone.
8. lions remind me of being bold for the Truth. so stand up for all that is good, true, just, lovely, and pure. plus, lions are my favorite animal ever. so.
9. reminds me of the how great our God is. His love, grace, all that He is, is abounding and forever, and so much like a great mountain that you can't quite grasp it's greatness, but you know in your heart it's greater and deeper and stronger than what you may see of it or know of it.



All Text © 2015 Footprints in the Sand | All Images sourced above

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Lipstick & Gelato || FEATURED BLOG

make-up art by the talent Rachel

People! Lovers of good food and high fashion (or just fashion in general), turn yourself to this site: 

My dear friend Rachel, who I've told you about before, now has a NEW blog called LIPSTICK & GELATO. It's a lovely blog of food, fashion, and art! Eee, I love it.

And what's more, Rachel is hosting a fantastic giveaway on her blog in honor of it's launch. Go check out her blog, enter the giveaway to win some loveliness, and share about L&G!


OH! And check out this post, How-To Throw a Party: Picnic Version! It features the lovely picnic Rachel and I had last year, in all it's simplicity, beauty, authenticity and joy. Seriously though folks, you can't beat a picnic in Williamsburg with a good friend.


All text  © 2015 Footprints in the Sand || All Images © 2015 Lipstick & Gelato

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

i like

i like the smell of the earth. especially after it's rained.
i like the touch of the sea, the force and motion and power behind the waves.
i like the taste of fresh fruit and homegrown veggies. 
i like the sight of life, taking in all the happenings and colors of living.
i like the sound of laughter. real, deep, unashamed laughter.
i like the feeling of being truly alive.

Abbotsford, Sir Walter Scott's house (castle) in Melrose, Scotland (c) May 2015


All text and All Images © 2015 Footprints in the Sand

Monday, August 3, 2015

England & Scotland Adventuring in Instagram shots || PART I

 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12

All the shots in this series are shot solely on my Android phone, with minimal to no editing. Minimal editing through VSCOCam.

Most of you probably already know, some of you may not, but I had the immense privilege to travel to London and then Scotland this last May. The shots in this series, England & Scotland Adventuring in Instagram shots, as well as the other series I started, That Far Off Place Called Scotland || UK Adventuring Part I, are all part of my UK Adventure 2015 complete series.

1. Houses of Parliament, London, England.
2Saw Big Ben and the London Eye. ✔
3. Trafalgar Square, with Big Ben in the background.
4. Hello Scotland!
5. Abbotsford, Sir Walter Scott's House (basically castle), is fantastic in it's architecture and personality. Oh and that's me there too.
6. Further proof of Abottsford's castle-esque beauty.
7And then there were horses in the field behind Abbotsford. They came galloping up out of nowhere to where I was wandering. Ohh, heeey horses! ... I guess they wanted their photo taken.
8Hello Edinburgh! My view through the bus window.
9This fantastic old Scottish hotel. Scotland's architecture is mind blowing
10. My first authentic Scottish meal of Haggis, Neeps, and Tatties Pie, at the eatery in Edinburgh Castle. First time having haggis and I loved it. 
11. Sir Walter Scott monument. Such gorgeous, intricate work. 
12St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh. The church of John Knox.

Stay tuned for more Instagram shots (as well as photographs from my camera)!

All text and All Images © 2015 Footprints in the Sand

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

alive and moody - Formerly List




I can't quite tell you how much I love the above photo. It's so very alive and profound and blue. It's an odd thing to explain, really, but I get all moody and deep when I see it. (And then everyone was like, she craaaazy). I promise, I haven't lost my marbles *yet*. But there's just certain photographs that fill me with a whole lot of "life is worth living just for this" kind of feelings. 

And along those lines, this week has been a lot like that photo. A good deal of thinking, resolving, and of really being alive. Also something not easily explained. My formerly list goes along somewhat with how the last week or so has been (and how the week will progress).

|| FORMERLY LIST ||


SONGS I'VE BEEN LISTENING TO
Hero by Family of the Year
The One by Kodaline
The Alchemist by Russell Watson
Crash and Burn by Thomas Rhett
Castle of Glass by Linkin Park
Big Idea by AJR

BOOKS I AM READING
The Big Short by Michael Lewis
John Adams by David McCullough
Crazy Busy by Kevin DeYoung
Sleeping Murder by Agatha Christie

TO DO THIS WEEK
train for FR Hazmat Ops class
all the work things
go hiking/exploring/adventuring
read, because reading is good
finish signing up for college classes
be bold

WHAT I READ ON THE INTERNET
Louie Giglio's Passion || 17 years ago he started a movement. Today, he's the one who has been moved.

TITLES OF FUTURE BLOG POSTS
a bit of London rain || UK Adventuring Part II
Deliciously Moody Skies || a collection of photographs
Homemade Crackers || RECIPE


All text and All Images © 2015 Footprints in the Sand

Saturday, July 18, 2015

You Have Made Me Hope



"Remember Your word to Your servant, in which You have made me hope."
-Psalm 119:49

Whatever your particular need may be, you will always find a promise in the Bible related to it. 

Are you faint and feeble because your way is rough and you are weary? Here is the promise---"He gives power to the faint" (Isaiah 40:29). When you read such a great promise, take it back to the great Promiser and ask Him to fulfill His own word. 

Are you seeking for Christ and thirsting for closer communion with Him? This promise shines like a star upon you---"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for Righteousness, for they shall be satisfied" (Matthew 5:6). Take that promise to the throne continually; do not plead anything else, but go to God over and over again with this---"Lord, You have said it; do as You have said." 

Are you distressed because of sin and burdened with the heavy load of your iniquities? Listen to these words---"I, I am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake, and I will not remember your sins" (Isaiah 43:25). You have no merit of your own to plead why He should pardon you, there is nothing in you that can save yourself, but do not lose hope. Plead His written promises and He will perform them. 

Are you afraid that you might not be able to hold on to the end and that after having thought yourself a child of God you should prove a castaway? Oh how many times I have felt this way: I am a child of God, but the way seems so hard and the trials so trying, and I am not sure if I can truly hold on to the end? These are the times we cry, Abba Father! If that is your condition, take this word of grace to the throne and plead it: "The mountains may depart and the hills be removed, but My steadfast love shall not depart from you" (Isaiah 54:10). 

If you have lost the sweet sense of the Saviors presence and are seeking Him with a sorrowful heart, remember the promises: "Return to me ... and I will return to you" (Zechariah 1:3). "For a brief moment I deserted you, but with great compassion I will gather you" (Isaiah 54:7). 

Look to the Rock that is higher, feast your faith upon God's own Word, and whatever your fears or wants, take them to the Bank of Faith with your Father's note, which reads, "Remember Your word to Your servant, in which You have made me hope" (Ps. 119:41). 

All text © 2012 Footprints in the Sand, adapted from C. H Spurgeon's Morning and Evening Devotions (April 28) | All Images © 2012 Charity Klicka

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Idolatry? Here? || analyzing the human heart


In Isaiah 44, the prophet Isaiah speaks to the people and rebukes their idolatry. Now you might say, "Idolatry, I understand that happened in other countries, other nations, and in other points in history. But there is no idolatry now, is there?" 

Well, every day in a thousand ways I am tempted to make myself the center of the universe. I am tempted to make my problems, pains, desires, top priorities in my life. A priority over Christ. I become my own idol.

And then there are other kinds of idols. The idol of materialism, the idol of sex, the idol of significance, the idol of wealth, and so many others that are characterized and baptized into orthodoxy within the framework of contemporary culture. 
Isaiah 44:6 says, "Thus says the Lord, the King of Israel and his Redeemer, the Lord of hosts: “I am the first and I am the last; besides me there is no god."
What a staggering claim into our post-modern thinking. "I am the first and I am the last; besides me there is no god."
"... Is there a God besides me? There is no Rock; I know not any." -Isaiah 44:8
In Isaiah 44, verses nine through eighteen, Isaiah speaks on the folly of idolatry.
"All who fashion idols are nothing, and the things they delight in do not profit. Their witnesses neither see nor know, that they may be put to shame." -Isaiah 44:9
And then he says, the person that shapes a god and casts an idol, will profit him nothing and he and his kind will be put to shame. Craftsman are nothing but men. Let them all come together and take their stand. They will all be brought to terror and to infamy (Isaiah 44:10-11). 

And then he goes down the line (He is having fun with this, as you see he illustrates it with metaphor and simile) and says look at man as he works with his chisels and his compasses, as he forms these things and puts them in shrines and so, goes out in the forest and gets a block of wood (Isaiah 44:12-14). But look, in verse fifteen it's man's fuel for burning: "Then it becomes fuel for a man. He takes a part of it and warms himself; he kindles a fire and bakes bread. Also he makes a god and worships it; he makes it an idol and falls down before it" (Isaiah 44:15). 
"Half of it he burns in the fire. Over the half he eats meat; he roasts it and is satisfied. Also he warms himself and says, “Aha, I am warm, I have seen the fire!” And the rest of it he makes into a god, his idol, and falls down to it and worships it. He prays to it and says, “Deliver me, for you are my god!” They know not, nor do they discern, for he has shut their eyes, so that they cannot see, and their hearts, so that they cannot understand." -Isaiah 44:16-18
Now look at this wonderful line here, verse nineteen: "No one stops to think..." Twentieth century left us a legacy, if you like, ugly twins: mindlessness and meaninglessness. How does this feel to you? What does this mean to you? Which side steps any notions of truth? 

But when you come to the Bible, it confronts us all the time. No one stops to think, no one has the knowledge or understanding to say, "Wait a minute, half of this I use for a fire, I bake bread over its coals, I roasted the meat and I ate it. Shall I make a detestable thing from what is left? Shall I bow down to a block of wood?" (Isaiah 44:19).
"He feeds on ashes; a deluded heart has led him astray, and he cannot deliver himself or say, 'Is there not a lie in my right hand?'” -Isaiah 44: 20
Now it is in contrast to that, that the Bible confirms that Jesus is the source, the sustainer, and the goal of all created reality. This is a staggering claim, but this is Biblical Christianity. 
"He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth..." -Colossians 1:15-17
"There is not one inch in the entire area of the human life about which Jesus does not cry, 'This is Mine. This belongs to me!'" -Abraham Kuyper
What are you putting your faith in? Are there idols in your life that you have been holding on to? 

All text from a post originally written in 2012, updated in 2015 © Footprints in the Sand, inspiration from Alistair Begg's sermon Jesus Our King part 1 | Image © 2015 Charity Klicka, taken of the Houses of Parliament in London, England.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

My Father


I'm so grateful to get to celebrate my dear daddy. I would truly not be who I am today without his love, his faith, his inspiration, and all the teaching he put into my life.

I love, and miss, him immensely.

And most importantly, today I celebrate my Heavenly Father. He who called me, redeemed me, and loves me unconditionally. It is He I live for, fight for, and will die for.


All text and All Images © 2015 Footprints in the Sand

Monday, June 15, 2015

Keep Going | WEEKLY QUOTE


This is more of a saying than a quote, per se. But it's a saying that's been a part of my life and one I often say to myself in the tough times.

My dad got Multiple Sclerosis (MS) the year I was born. And it was an ongoing battle for him until his death. But through all the really rotten days and nights, he still gave all the glory to God. And not once did I hear him complain. He'd continually say, "I got to keep on keeping on". And indeed, he did just that until the very end. May I walk in his footsteps and have the courage to keep going. 

Keep On Keeping On.