Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Really Belated Give-away Winner!!

This is NOT the way to build a great blog following...

I, AHEM,

forgot

that I had a give-away blog

way back in

**cough, cough**

August

*insert shame-faced-ness here*

Yes, indeed, pathetic, but I want to rectify that RIGHT NOW!!

The winner is:


I will be sending you a book in the mail (or dropping it off at your house) that will hopefully help you in your walk of gratitude and joy!

That's it...

Back to your regular programming!

Me again:  Go check out Rachel's site, she makes the most incredible cakes!!!

(Rachel, can you PM me your house address and I'll get it to you one of these Thursdays)

In Summary and I Need Your Input {Day 31}

Phew!  Made it through to 31!!  Kind of amazed at myself to be perfectly honest.  This farm girl must like writing or something since I actually pulled it off...and in the time frame allotted!!

Uncommon Creativity has been a journey for me, helping to define that question...do I really love writing?  And I found the answer...yes I do!!

The Allume Conference was such a help to understand that about myself and realize that it was perfectly okay for me to love writing and embrace who God has created me to be...and part of that is to write!

I have loved writing every day, even though it caused a wee bit of stress here and there.  Like when your 'scheduled post' doesn't go up as scheduled...

Where to go from here, that is the question.

Stay tuned...there are definitely changes in the wind (like the location of this blog).

{INSERT YOUR INPUT HERE}

I would highly value your input, however, as I figure out what to write about...if you wouldn't mind taking a few minutes to answer some questions I would appreciate it.

1.  Which type of post did you enjoy the most? (you can pick more than one)
     a.  my own journey stories
     b.  teaching from the word
     c.  artsy poetic word type posts (quotes, poems, etc.)
    d.  tutorials for projects
    e.  5 minute Fridays (FYI, I will most likely keep doing these whether or not you like them, cause I do!)
    f.  teaching on the home/kids

2.  What kind of stuff would you like to read here?
     a.  parenting stuff
     b.  encouragement
     c.  adoption stuff
     d.  other (please explain yourself)
     e.  more teachy stuff

That's it, two questions that would help me clarify where I go from here...

Nope, one more,  I'm thinking of a new name to reflect the current state of my writing...your thoughts?

1.  Out There (cause I've always been swimming a little against the stream and am a forerunner)
2.  continue with "Fresh Flowers"
3.  K.I.D. - Kinda Inspired Designs (cause my nickname growing up was 'Kid')

Alright, that's it, I promise.

Thank you so much for joining me on this journey.  Your comments and interaction inspire me to keep going! (except for those flower/gift shop peeps from India/Japan, sorry, you don't inspire much).  Over the next month I will be sharing the notes from the workshops I attended at Allume and some more thoughts from the keynotes.

Oh yeah,  I will be doing the majority of my writing in a skirt for the next month...just, well, that's another story!

Blessed Beyond Belief by all of you...

Lani - the flowerlady


This post is one in an ongoing series called {31 days of Uncommon Creativity}.  If you'd like to start back at the beginning you can do so by clicking here!  You can find a lot of other 31 day-ers over at Nesting Place. go check it out you may find some great stuff there that is just begging for you to read it!


*eucharisteo*
Grace * Thanksgiving * Joy

You will also find me on:
Facebook:  Lani Fast Wiens
Twitter:  @flowerlady77
Pinterest: lanireneewiens

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

One Thing (Day 30)

On Saturday night, Martha asked me what the one thing was that I'm taking home from Allume 2012.  I floundered a bit, probably looking slightly fish-like, as I processed her question.  It didn't take long, though, for crystal clear clarity to snake it's way into my consciousness.

image from: http://whowillyouserve.blogspot.ca
This one thing...

to behold your beauty Lord,

to know and love you more and more,

it's what I've been created for,

this one thing...

to lean upon the One I love,

safely resting in His arms,

set your seal upon my heart

I desire

this one thing.

(from the song, "One Thing" by  Chris Dupre)

This conference satisfied my weary soul in ways I cannot begin to express.  God opened the heavens for me, met me in my fears, gave me a few sweet, sweet moments (including chocolate chocolate chunk cookies - Ms Debi Stangeland from FunkiPlanet gets the shout out for those gluten-free babies!!), answered some prayers He didn't have to and took care of me through the arms of those delightful women I was blessed to spend time with.

I am so thankful for receiving answers to very practical questions I had, for speakers who took time to seek The Lord even in those very practical workshops and for the companies and individuals who gave and gave and gave to us, including the hotel staff.  We were sent out so full.

But this one thing is the thing I come back to.  My heart longing for my God, to hear His voice in my ear, His breath on my cheek.  I long to feel passion and know that it's okay.  I am a 'good girl' in the midst of redeeming grace trying to understand non-legalistic living.  I'm not very good at it yet.

That is the one thing that is coming home with me over and above everything else.  A desire to get a first love kind of thing going.  As a 'good girl' I've been a Christian all my life, there really isn't a before and after Jesus moment.  My flick at rebellion was short-lived and rather uneventful, but leaving scars that are soul deep.  I need to know what passion feels like and I think I'm ready to go after it, because if I don't, all that I'm doing is so pointless.  This quote summed it up for me...

"Do you really want to stand before your maker with the applause of men ringing in your ears
 only to have heaven standing silent."  - Ann Voskamp

No I don't.  My flesh could care less what my spirit wants, it is clingy and needy and ever so eager to take center stage and worship the messenger rather than the message.  I'm so tired of all that.  Just the one thing please, that's all I want.

There were so many who blessed me over these last few days and I want to take Lisa Jo's advice and give a shout out to just a few...

Ann Voskamp from A Holy Experience - you are the real deal and you brought the one thing with you, giving this soul sister an opportunity to give back to my Creator words of worship that were desperately longing to be expressed in music...a thousand thanks for bringing that piece with you

Laura - orgjunkie - what a treasure you were to me once I got my nose out of that book!! You were my saving grace so many times this weekend when my knees were knocking and my heart was quaking.  Thank you for extending friendship so unconditionally!

Lisa at Little Writer Mama - God knew who my most perfect roommate would be and it was you.  I love how He knit our hearts together over a table at Starbucks.  Friends, if you can get to a conversation about 'gastric outlets' and still be completely comfortable in your first conversation you have hit sisterhood pay-dirt!!  You are a keeper!

My Better Writer and (in)couragedFlock peeps - what a ginormous blessing you ladies are, have you any idea how beautiful you all are?  Nancy, Martha, Donna, Becky, Amy, Lizzie, Tereasa, Debi, Auri (yay for Washi Tape!!), Tammy, Julie, Lyn, Mary (if I forgot you it's only because I'm really tired and just a little emotional not because you're not important to me!)

Alia Joy and Kathi, your welcome mat was out and I'm so glad I stepped up.  You two are a riot!!  I pray that you will feel so well cared for as you soak up your time in the storm!

Just one thing...
it's all that matters.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
This post is one in an ongoing series called {31 days of Uncommon Creativity}.  If you'd like to start back at the beginning you can do so by clicking here!  You can find a lot of other 31 day-ers over at Nesting Place. go check it out you may find some great stuff there that is just begging for you to read it!


*eucharisteo*
Grace * Thanksgiving * Joy

You will also find me on:
Facebook:  Lani Fast Wiens
Twitter:  @flowerlady77
Pinterest: lanireneewiens

Linked up at:






 

Monday, October 29, 2012

Creativity is Good Theology (Day 29)


Don't you just love it that there isn't an end to the variety of ways you can express your creativity.

"Creativity is good theology."
- Ann Voskamp

Way back at the beginning of these 31 days I talked about God's creative genius.  It was the first thing He did that we have record of.  His creative juices flowed out of His love-satisfied self and produced this miracle we call home.  You and I and those lovely faces around your table are His doing.

I love it that the first appearance of the Holy Spirit resting on someone was two guys who where appointed to do all the interior decorating for the tabernacle.  That is such an amazing validation for the creative spirit.

God wired each of us so uniquely and there is room in this wide world for each of us to express it.  We don't need to get all jealous of someone else, there is room for your voice, there is room for mine.

Darren Rowse from ProBlogger reminded us that we need not compare ourselves to anyone else but ourselves.  Have we grown from where we were 2 weeks, 2 months or 2 years ago?

Last week I was reminded by Lisa Jo's blogpost that God has a very different definition of success than we do.  He just wants us to be obedient and faithful to what He's called us to do.

In order to be obedient and faithful to a calling, we first have to hear one.  Are you listening?  Do you understand the unique voice that the Creator of all things has asked you to do?  If not, lean in and listen, you may have to create a little space so you have time to hear.  As The Nester pointed out, if we are only getting creative sparks in the shower or the car pool line we are over-scheduled and need to find some white space, margins, so that God can have room to speak.

Right now I'm in a bit of flux.  I think I love to do too many things.  I love to write (obviously), but I also love the hands on type of creating with fabric and paper and ribbons.  I'm not quite sure how to combine the two.  In my schedule I need to find time for both things, because they both are life-giving to me.

This is where I'm going over the next few weeks...pondering, searching, leaning in to hear what He has to say about these things.  This blog is going to be taking new shape, probably moving to a different platform, maybe even getting a new name and focus.  I want to make sure that my message isn't muddied because of too many things, I want my voice to be clear.

Take time to be creative today...whatever your creative bent looks like.  You don't have to defend it, it has been given to you as a gift.  Enjoy it, sink into it and see what comes out.

Have a creative day!!


This post is one in an ongoing series called {31 days of Uncommon Creativity}.  If you'd like to start back at the beginning you can do so by clicking here!  You can find a lot of other 31 day-ers over at Nesting Place. go check it out you may find some great stuff there that is just begging for you to read it!


*eucharisteo*
Grace * Thanksgiving * Joy

You will also find me on:
Facebook:  Lani Fast Wiens
Twitter:  @flowerlady77
Pinterest: lanireneewiens


Sunday, October 28, 2012

What I Saw


I saw her.

Perched and searching.

Looking for someone.

She was looking for me but I was hidden in my book.

I saw him.

I saw people walk around him.

He just wanted a cup of coffee.

So I bought him one.

I saw her.

Looking lost and scared and lonely.

Hoping someone would see her.

I extended an invitation and found a friend.

I saw her.

Sitting, waiting patiently.

She shared a tiny piece of her heart and it looked a little like mine.

I saw her.

Trying hard to keep the baby quiet but it wasn't working.

Cloaked in shame and frustration she left the room, I remembered those days and felt her pain.

I saw her.

A God-ordained moment, a door I prayed to open and it did.

Because, for some reason, she needed me just then.

They saw me.

Beautiful, sweet women who I've held close to my heart.

They watched and waited for me and threw the doors of their hearts wide.

Seeing, being seen.

This was Allume.

Uncommon Singing

Well here it is my second try as I didn't save the last post I was half done and disappeared in blogger land.   Something about being a hack on my wife's blog doesn't really make for efficient use of time as my experience and knowledge level of blogger software is very limited,  so let's try again.    My wife the flowerlady is very creative in many disciplines, eg.  scrapbooking, quilting, painting, drawing, writing, songwriting, drama, dance, speaking, teaching, mothering etc.   However, I'm very singular in my creativity and that is mostly in the art of making music.   So, as she invited me to blog for Sunday her travel day back from Allume, here is my gift to you her readers on her behalf of something I really enjoy and hope you will too.

My topic is uncommon singing, and in particular it's uncommon in that you are not singing someone else's song, you are going to sing a new song to the Lord.   You are going to express your heart to the Lord through song using simple chords to accompany yourself.   To do this first get to your instrument either guitar of piano or find someone who can play these if you can't, and if you haven't learned yet I'll give you piano lesson basic for playing chords to spontaneous singing.
    C         D            E            F             G           A            B
So you are going to play to chords on the piano to accompany yourself, the C and the F chord.   Now for a little theory lesson.  Most songs are made up from scales, and in particular the major scale, unless you are playing jazz.   A scale is a set of 7 notes that repeat themselves going from low to high that are certain distance in pitch apart that is consistent.  
The C scale is played on all white keys so it is the easiest to start with to play.   Chords are made of 3 notes for basic ones that play every other note on white keys in key of C starting on each note.   (Note if you are a guitar player use D and G as F chord is a pain.  This is the one, four, progression based on D scale.)
                                                                                            
So a C chord starts on first note of scale C and is played C   E   G
The F chord is built on the 4th note of C Scale which is played F  A   C.   Note the C is not shown above B on diagram but on a piano C will apear above B on the piano.    
So on your piano middle C is the C that is under the label of the piano manufacturer in the middle of the piano above the keys.   Play C   E and G with your thumb, middle and pinkey fingers on Right hand (RH),  using your left hand play a C below middle C 8 white keys below to play bass using your left hand thumb.       Now you are  going to play your chord in the classic rhythm of pop music.   You are going to count 1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and, and repeat, 1 and 2 and, etc....   You are going to play the C chord (CEG) with your RH and the C below with your LH thumb, on beat 1 and the and of 2 and hold chord down inbetween.    So   1 and 2 and  3 and 4 and.    Then you are going to move to the F chord and play F A C with your RH thumb middle and pinkey and the F below the C you played with your pinkey, playing on 1 and the and of 2 and holding down the notes inbetween.   You can use the right pedal on your piano to make the chord notes smoother together and hold, lifting up the pedal everytime you change from C to F chord and F to Chord.    This movement from C to F and F to C and back to C to F is called a chord progression and one of the simplest progressions at that called a I  IV (one four) progression because the chords are built on the 1st and 4th notes of the scale.    

So now you have your accompaniment playing C and F chords on beat one and the and of 2 using sustain pedal to connect and hold the notes lifting up inbetween each chord, and now you start making up melodies in the heart to the Lord.    Simply turn your heart and singing voice to the Lord and sing to Him how you feel about Him, sing your thanksgiving to him, sing about the character qualities your love about Him.   Eg.   You are faithful, you are awesome,  you are forgiving,   You are compassionate.      Or sing verbs you feel towards him,  I love you Lord, I worship you Father,   Jesus I love you because you first loved me.   And if you are stuck for praise words and feeling words take the words of Scripture in the psalms and sing them to your C and F chord progression.    Sing and make music to the Lord and enjoy Him, because He really does enjoy hearing your voice and your love expressed through music.   If anyone knows how to upload music to a blog let me know, as I could share some examples of myself and my students doing spontaneous singing of the scriptures if anyone is interested.  It's a lot of fun both making up the rhythms for the chord progressions and the chords themselves as well as come up with the melodies on the fly.   

Blessings on you and your households as you make music, and in some cases just a joyful noise to the Lord today!

Firemusicman, hacking the flowerlady's blog 

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Creative Home - part 4 {Day 27}

"Train up a child in the way they should go and when they are old they will not part from it."

These words from Proverbs 22 have always caused me to stop and think.  I remember one discussion on this subject that promoted the idea behind these words in the original text.  The idea was to train up a child in the way they are 'bent'.

How is my child bent?  What are the gifts and talents (not the same thing) that God has imprinted into this child?  What are his/her natural inclinations?

The answers to these questions will help you, as a parent, to choose opportunities for your child to explore, create and imagine.  It isn't abnormal for you child to shift between interests or for those interests to change as they grow and mature.  However, as you observe your child in various instances you'll notice what things really 'light them up'.  This is probably the way they are bent.

It's easiest to use my oldest son as an example because his bent is obvious and he is on his way to fulfilling that.  He wants to be in design, leaning towards either industrial or architectural.  Looking back over his life we could see from when he was a wee lad that this was his inclination.  He loved building sets of any kind!

Lego, Kinects, Bionicles...anything you could stick together was his favorite toy.  He also had a pretty wild imagination!  I remember him putting on a snowsuit in the middle of summer - backwards - then putting some helmet on, climbing into his little brother's reclining high chair and pretending to be an astronaut!  But mostly, he loved to build.

As he got older he started experimenting with drawing and the design element came out.  He loves playing strategy video games where you have to collect, build and distribute supplies.  He has explored leather crafting and sewing.  (There aren't too many 16 year old guys who are comfortable in a fabric shop!)  He wants to learn about blacksmithing and knife-making.  He plays drums and does beats.  He's a bit eclectic.

You may be painting a pigeon hole representation of my son in your head of what he might look like, sound like or act like given what you just read because there's a bit of a stereotype that goes along with that...and you'd be dead wrong!

Because he's a big, brawny guy most people think he's very into athletics, he's not.  He has played volleyball for a number of years but decided that it isn't something he loves so he isn't going to waste his time doing that.  He is choosing to do things that he loves...so he decided to homeschool again, so he could pursue those things.

Are any of my other kids like him?  Nope.  We've got an athlete, a scientist, a negotiator, a diplomat and an artist/dancer/musician in residence.  Each one so different.

Our goal as parents is to try and give them as much opportunity to do the things they truly love doing.  At times we have insisted on particular activities because we see the potential even when they aren't enjoying themselves because they are currently stuck in the boring middle where it looks alot like work!  We know that the hard work will pay off and one day they'll thank us.  We were both fortunate enough to have parents who did that for us and we know it to be true! (I still hate practicing!)

Pray for your children, ask God for insight if nothing seems to really be popping - you may not have found the right thing yet.  This whole process takes time, prayer, patience, money and did I mention time...

Don't force them into a mold of what you think you'd like them to be, give them freedom to be who God designed them to be.  I don't think you'll be sorry.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Five Minute Friday {Day 26} - VOICE

It's 5 Minute Friday and I am doing it live from the Allume Social!!!!  WOOT!


5 Minute Friday

VOICE

My voice.  What does it sound like?  You can't hear me hear on this screen.  You have no idea if I'm sad or happy or screaming at you.

Do I have something to say?

Yes, I think I do.

Do I know what it is?

No, not always.

But some days the heavens open up to me and God sweeps back a veil and there it is...something that I can hear from His voice that is just for me, like a freshly picked flower that needs to be shared.

So I share it with you.

My voice is a fresh flower picked for you by me, from Him so that you can hear His voice through mine.

Stop and listen, my prayer is that you will hear His voice speaking through mine and add your voice and together

and another will come, and another and together

we become a chorus and delicious song for the world to hear as we join our voices together.

One message...

one voice.

Together in community

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


What is 5 Minute Friday?

From the author of Five Minute Friday (FMF) Lisa Jo Baker:

So, here’s the skinny: every Friday for over a year hundreds of people join a kind of writing flash mob over here.


We write for five minutes flat. All on the same prompt that I post here at 1 minute past midnight EST ever Friday. And we connect on Twitter with the hashtag#FiveMinuteFriday
No extreme editing; no worrying about perfect grammar, font, or punctuation.
Unscripted. Unedited. Real.
It started because I’d been thinking about writing and how often our perfectionism gets in the way of our words. And I figured, why not take 5 minutes and see what comes out: not a perfect post, not a profound post, just five minutes of focused writing.
So now on Fridays a group of people who love to throw caution to the wind and just write without worrying if it’s just right gather to share what five minutes buys them. Just five minutes.
Your words. This shared feast.


It’s easy to join in, just:
  1. Check what the prompt is on my blog.
  2. Write a post in only five minutes on that topic on your blog.
  3. Link over here and invite friends to join in.
  4. Select the permalink to your post {so not your blog url www.lisajobaker.com but your post url www.lisajobaker.com/2012/07/five-minute-friday-2/ }
  5. Using the linky tool at the bottom of my Five Minute Friday post enter your link.
  6. Your post will show up in our Five Minute Friday linky.
  7. Be sure and encourage the person who linked up before you!
Our most important requirement for participation: There’s really only one absolute, no ifs, ands or buts about it Five Minute Friday rule: you must visit the person who linked up before you & encourage them in their comments. Seriously. That is, like, the rule. And the fun. And the heart of this community.
Five Minute Friday

V

This post is one in an ongoing series called {31 days of Uncommon Creativity}.  If you'd like to start back at the beginning you can do so by clicking here!  You can find a lot of other 31 day-ers over at Nesting Place. go check it out you may find some great stuff there that is just begging for you to read it!


*eucharisteo*
Grace * Thanksgiving * Joy

You will also find me on:
Facebook:  Lani Fast Wiens
Twitter:  @flowerlady77
Pinterest: lanireneewiens

Give Thanks Garland - {Day 25}

I love paper almost as much as I love fabric.  There are sooooooooooooo many fun things you can do with a bit of paper and glue.  I decided to make a garland to go on the mantle of our fireplace downstairs.  I rarely decorate anything down there because it is one of main destruction zones...but I thought paper wasn't so expensive to replace!  

Instructions for "Give Thanks" Garland

What I used:
Corner Rounder (Creative Memories)
Stamping Ink (Creative Memories and Studio)
Lifting Tool (Creative Memories)
Brads and Eyelets (from my stash)

Tools for this project.

I cut out 10 4" circles of the lighter paper and then 10 3.3" 'icing' from the textured, dark paper and glued them together with the dot runner.

I cut out 2" lettering using the Reminisce cartridge (Give Thanks) and used the Xyron to make them into stickers.  The Xyron is my fave gadget ever to date!  It makes putting lettering on SO easy.

Next, I inked the edges of my circles, first with pink, then with brown!  Always amazes me what an inked edge will do to give something a finished look.
Here you can see the difference between single inking and the double inked edges.  I've never actually tried that before but I think it worked great, don't you!?
Next I cut one inch strips from the striped paper to make the connecting rods.

used the corner rounder to make them pretty and correspond to the round edges of the circles.



I used my tools to create pilot holes for the brads to link them all together. (A huge darning needle works well for brads) I inserted eyelets on either end so that I could hang the garland with tacks, you could use bits of ribbon, too!

And there's the finished garland, hanging on the mantle.  I did a double bar between the two words to separate them.

A little closer look!  


All finished!  Hope you enjoyed this little project.  Obviously you wouldn't need to use the words Give Thanks, you could use the same idea, change the colors or the words and make a festive garland for any occasion!

Have a creative kind of day!


This post is one in an ongoing series called {31 days of Uncommon Creativity}.  If you'd like to start back at the beginning you can do so by clicking here!  You can find a lot of other 31 day-ers over at Nesting Place. go check it out you may find some great stuff there that is just begging for you to read it!


*eucharisteo*
Grace * Thanksgiving * Joy

You will also find me on:
Facebook:  Lani Fast Wiens
Twitter:  @flowerlady77
Pinterest: lanireneewiens


Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Words for Wednesday {24} - More Gratitude

I have to share a few more glorious quotes about gratitude!  They are just so rich with meaning and life!  Today the Allume Social begins and I am too excited for words.  So thankful for this opportunity!!

One is rich according to what one is, not according to what one has.
- Henry Ward Beecher

When I count my blessings I count you twice!
- Irish Blessing

Blessed is the seaon which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love.
- Hamilton Wright Mabie

If you have lived, take thankfully the past.
- John Dryden

Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.
-William Arthur Ward

We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.
- Thornton Wilder

Live thankful!


This post is one in an ongoing series called {31 days of Uncommon Creativity}.  If you'd like to start back at the beginning you can do so by clicking here!  You can find a lot of other 31 day-ers over at Nesting Place. go check it out you may find some great stuff there that is just begging for you to read it!

*eucharisteo*
Grace * Thanksgiving * Joy

You will also find me on:
Facebook:  Lani Fast Wiens
Twitter:  @flowerlady77
Pinterest: lanireneewiens

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

What do Allume and the Bible have in common? {Day 23}

I'm leaving on a jet plane!!

for the Allume Social....

Today the journey begins!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yes, I am just a wee bit excited!

But first, today, I am going on a date with my husband who is going to sacrifice his sleep to get me to the airport at 4:30 in the morning, bless his heart!

How does any of this apply to God's creativity?

I am going to meet approximately 400 women from all over the states and Canada.  We have some things in common:

1.  We love Jesus.
2.  We are bloggers...writers who write on the internet...and some are authors of e-books and paper books.
3.  We are women.

And yet there is great diversity:

1.  We come from many places, experiences and age groups.
2.  We come from different spiritual backgrounds.
3.  Our personal experience/pain/sorrow/joy influences our writing in vastly different ways.
4.  Some write random stuff as God directs, some are focused on one particular thing.
5.  Some are veterans of the blogosphere, some aren't even started yet and there is everything in between.

We are the same and different but there is this one thing...

The gospel of the kingdom is the key to all of this.

Whether it's fashion, decorating, deep thoughts, counselling...we all want to point our readers to the kingdom where the answers are.

One day God put the thought to create the computer...then made it smaller and accessible to the common household...then internet...and before all of that, he put the desire to communicate with words...

God knew that Allume would come and all of us would want to hang out together and He's smiling over all of it!

He put the scriptures together with over 40 authors and 400 years so I'm thinking 400 writers and 40 hours might accomplish something for the kingdom...don't you?

Gotta go, the van is warm and my honey is anxious to get this show on the road!

Just a reminder...I won't have links on facebook so you may want to subscribe or follow by e-mail so you don't miss anything!!


This post is one in an ongoing series called {31 days of Uncommon Creativity}.  If you'd like to start back at the beginning you can do so by clicking here!  You can find a lot of other 31 day-ers over at Nesting Place. go check it out you may find some great stuff there that is just begging for you to read it!


*eucharisteo*
Grace * Thanksgiving * Joy

You will also find me on:
Facebook:  Lani Fast Wiens
Twitter:  @flowerlady77
Pinterest: lanireneewiens

Monday, October 22, 2012

May I Suggest...

Just a little side note my cyber friends...okay some of you aren't cyber cause I know you in RL, however,  just to let you know that I'm heading to the Allume Social tomorrow and won't be physically here writing for you every day.

However, I have discovered (thanks to a cyber friend) the wonder of scheduled posting!!  Hallelujah!!

All of next week is ready and packaged for you and will pop up here at its appointed time.

I will not, however, be posting the links on facebook because I will be way too busy hanging out with a wonderful bunch of women I'm about to meet....

So why don't you head on over to the SUBSCRIBE button on the side and slide your e-mail address in there.  TADA!  Never miss a post again...because I hearby commit to writing far more regularly...I might even get a better site...I might even have a point to my rambling...you never know!

Love you all...see you next week!!

Lani - the flowerlady

The Nasty Beasts {Day 22}

The scene outside my window this morning was inspiring to say the least.  Beautiful huge flakes of snow falling lazily to the ground and resting on the pine tree, not a breath of wind to disturb them.  Of course we turned on the Christmas music as we do on the first snow day every year.
This isn't my window but this is pretty close to this morning! :)

God designed me (and you) to be creative in some way.  The enemy of our souls would like to squash that in any way possible, unfortunately for me, it doesn't take much! :(

All that sneaky thief needs to do is remind me of my insecurities, fear of rejection, fear of success, my desperate need for affirmation.  Yeah, those things just suck the creative juice right out of you and stop you cold.  Can I get an AMEN?

So what do I do to get over this?

Honestly...

I'm not sure I've quite conquered those nasty beasts completely, but we're working on it.  The best way to combat lies is with the truth, this I know.  I know that I am accepted, loved and secure.  I do.  Unfortunately that didn't stop the onslaught of doubt that came in when I got the last rejection letter.  Am I really that weak?  Apparently, I'm not as secure as I'd like to be.

Tomorrow marks the beginning of my journey to Allume.  I'm about to throw myself into a situation that is WAY out of my comfort zone and I am so jazzed to do it.  I believe with all my heart that God has something for me in the midst of all those beautiful women.  There's something I can learn, treasures I am going to take home.  What they will be remains to be seen.

I will have the opportunity to rub shoulders with people who have tasted success in the writing world, publishers and others like me who are trying to work it out still.  The sweet part is the cheering each other on, loving Jesus together, seeing what these words of ours can do in a broken world.

My commitment to you (and to myself) is to not let rejection and insecurity get the upper hand this week.  I plan to be bold and courageous (I hope).  My fellow Canadian blogger friend Katherine wrote my thoughts out so beautifully, I encourage you to go read them at Just a Thought...I can hardly wait to meet her, because she is going to be looking for me...and I will be looking for her and you!

Update:  Just got this beautiful post in my e-mail and had to share it with you, because this is what I'm wrestling with!  Lisa Jo from Gypsy Mama - What if it isn't successful?

I'd love to hear how you fight against your insecurities and fears...let us spur one another on!!


This post is one in an ongoing series called {31 days of Uncommon Creativity}.  If you'd like to start back at the beginning you can do so by clicking here!  You can find a lot of other 31 day-ers over at Nesting Place. go check it out you may find some great stuff there that is just begging for you to read it!


*eucharisteo*
Grace * Thanksgiving * Joy

You will also find me on:
Facebook:  Lani Fast Wiens
Twitter:  @flowerlady77
Pinterest: lanireneewiens

Sunday, October 21, 2012

My Uncommon Wife

I married the flowerlady 20 years ago.    She is anything but common stock, she is a daughter of the King I am priviledged to know and love and the mother of our 6 children.   She is the reason why I was voted top public speaker of my class in college, as she inspired me to write and speak on the topic of "the academic benefits of being a married student".  

Our life together has been filled with many joys and sorrows and is a testimony to the faithfulness of God and His incredible love and forgiveness.   You ask, "How has blogging impacted my flowerlady?"    Blogging for my wife has been a way for her to share the revelations she receives from our Father in heaven as she walks through life with Him as my wife, a mother of 6 plus 1 in heaven, and a friend of other women.   She is very creative and blogging gives her a chance to share the nuggets of wisdom and revelation she receives with other women to encourage and build them up.   My wife is a bit of a introvert and very busy as a mom and farmer/pastor's wife and so blogging helps connect her with other women and lets them see into her life and benefit from her journey.

    You ask " How attending the allume conference has affected her?"   Well, it ignited a fire of desire in her when she saw the ad for the conference.   So much so, she prayed and asked our Father in heaven to get her there, while placing her hand on the screen.    She shared her desire with me, and  I prayed and felt that if she was to go, money would come in through her blogging.   She gave up hope at that point thinking there is no way all the money would come in that way.   However, the allume conference filled up and the dream was all but completely dead, when a ticket came up for sale from a woman who had registered but couldn't go.   $150 had come in through other women who read her blog but she felt since all had not come in to cover the cost and that was "my" criteria from God it was still beyond reach.   However, she dared to  share her dream with me and I listened, and prayed.  "The seed money came in from your readers fulfilling the criteria ",  I said, "and we should have enough to send you from this years harvest on the farm",  and so I shocked her in supporting her to go as I felt strongly the Lord wanted her to go.  I shocked and scared her more when I said I felt she needs to go by herself and connect with other women writers and not worry bout me.  (Something about introverts I think going out on their own meeting women she's never met before :)) By the way, when you meet my wife, and need an ice-breaker, ask her to tell you the story of how we got engaged.   Back to the story,  eventually the fear and shock wore off and she texted me back proudly that she'd booked her flight and hotel all by herself and found a roomie and she has been a ball of fire since.   The very fact that God heard her prayer that day last winter and it's all working out for her to go has encouraged my wife to write more faithfully, and her faith has grown so much that perhaps the dream of being a women's speaker and writer is closer than ever before.   I love you my sweet flowerlady, it's your time to shine.  

P.S. -  Lani's name means "heavenly light" and I know when you meet her at Allume you will enjoy her radiance and creativity in person even more than what you receive through her blog.   I will miss her and I cherish her very much, so please take good care of her for me, all you Allumites.  Thanks!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Creative Home - part 3 {Day 20}

When I asked my kids this morning what they thought I should write about for the "Creative Home" part of this series, they started spitting things out like...

"Lego walls!"
"What if our walls were made of spaghetti!?"

And crazy stuff like that, it made me laugh!  Not exactly what I was after but it made us all smile to imagine a house built out of spaghetti!

Creativity needs a place to be a little silly, a place where it's okay to be slightly foolish.  Sometimes our house is one where you can dance in the kitchen and dress up in crazy outfits.  We laugh and joke and enjoy each other's thoughts and ideas.  And sometimes it is not...

Sometimes our home is critical and cutting and not a very nice place to voice new ideas because there's a very good chance that someone is going to laugh at you instead of with you, tell you your idea is stupid or compete with you for a better idea.

I wish that kind of stuff never happened, but it does, and unfortunately it's part of the dynamic that makes up our family, we are far from perfect.  Perhaps that's why I treasure little moments like this morning when everyone is on the same page and they're all okay with it.

If you want a creative atmosphere in your home...help make room for it...

1.  give space for imagination, play and experimenting...
2.  help your children learn to value one another's ideas
3.  be a little silly sometimes so that they learn that it's okay to let loose
4.  explore the full range of emotions
5.  bite your tongue
6.  try not to 'make it better' - let 'it' be what 'it' is
7.  what about you?  What are your ideas to help foster creativity in your home?

Play outside the box!  Okay sometimes you need to learn what the box looks like first!

Look at things from a different angle!

Does ALL the dough have to be bread?

Try a new texture or surface

sometimes it's okay not to draw on paper!


or dance on the furniture

Flubber Fist!


This post is one in an ongoing series called {31 days of Uncommon Creativity}.  If you'd like to start back at the beginning you can do so by clicking here!  You can find a lot of other 31 day-ers over at Nesting Place. go check it out you may find some great stuff there that is just begging for you to read it!


*eucharisteo*
Grace * Thanksgiving * Joy

You will also find me on:
Facebook:  Lani Fast Wiens
Twitter:  @flowerlady77
Pinterest: lanireneewiens

Friday, October 19, 2012

5 Minute Friday: Look {Day 19}

It's Friday!!! Which means it's one day closer to Allume!!  Which means next week I'll be doing a live 5 Minute Friday with a whole bunch of other FMF-ers!!!  I'm a little excited...just sayin'....

What is FMF?  It is five minutes of writing...no editing, no thinking ahead, just writing for 5 minutes on a theme.  If you want to play you are welcome to...just click that 5 minute Friday button in the sidebar and it will take you over to Lisa Jo's site so you can link up and join the party!

Today's word:

LOOK!

Go...

Look at me!!!

Would you look at that!?

Look with your eyes open!!

I am invited every moment of my waking hours to look at something.  What do I choose to look at?  I walk into a store and they make sure I am looking at the thing they want to sell me that day.  The movie posters scream at me to spend my looking hours at the product of their money and hours.

The television wants me to look at it and not look away.

My computer screen beeps, calling me over, look and see who is talking to you now.

My kids run in, "Look mom, see what we found."

My husband lifts my chin and invites me to look into his eyes and see the love and acceptance when I can't see it myself.

My friend invites me over to look at her project.  She wants my approval, my suggestions, my input into what she has done.

All day, every day, I am invited to look.

My eyes need to see that which is life-giving....where do I choose to Look!

"I will lift my eyes to the Maker of the mountains I can't climb,
 I will lift my eyes to the calmer of the oceans raging wild.
 I will lift my eyes to the healer of the hurt I hold inside,
 I will lift my eyes, lift my eyes, to You!"
(excerpt from "I Will Lift My Eyes by Bebo Norman)

STOP

Happy Friday!!


This post is one in an ongoing series called {31 days of Uncommon Creativity}.  If you'd like to start back at the beginning you can do so by clicking here!  and finding the list of all the posts so far. You can find a lot of other 31 day-ers over at Nesting Place. go check it out you may find some great stuff there that is just begging for you to read it!


*eucharisteo*
Grace * Thanksgiving * Joy

You will also find me on:
Facebook:  Lani Fast Wiens
Twitter:  @flowerlady77
Pinterest: lanireneewiens


Thursday, October 18, 2012

Honey-Oatmeal Bread {Day 18}

Mmmmmm, nothing wraps a place in home like the smell of fresh bread!  I LOVE making bread.  With six kids in this house it is WAY cheaper for us to make all or our bread.  I make about 12 loaves a week and yes, we usually eat them all!  With 4 kids in public school and 4 of us at home every day...well, that's a lot of sandwiches.

I do not own a bread maker - that would be a pointless exercise in futitlity.  My M-I-L bought us a Bosch kitchen machine as a wedding gift.  Probably the most practical gift we receive.  I use it all.the.time!  Those thing are worth every penny because they just won't die!  I've even had mine fall off the counter and keep going! In 20 years we've replace the power cord, (that's a whole story in itself), the bowl covers and the wire whisks - but still worth it!

I also love that Jesus called himself the bread of life!  He broke bread with his disciples and encouraged us not to give up on breaking bread together.  Bread was the staple of the Jewish culture, perhaps if he had been in China he would have introduced himself as the rice of life...but we're not in China...so bread it is!!

Today my project for you is Honey-Oatmeal Bread (this recipe will make 6 loaves of bread).

In your mixing bowl combine:

7 cups of warm water
3 tbsp of instant yeast
1/2 cup of honey
3 tsp of salt
1/2 cup of oil
2 cups of oatmeal (I use either quick oats of steel cut oats, doesn't really matter)
4 cups of flour

Mix that together and then continue adding flour until you have a soft dough that pulls away from the sides and middle of the mixer.  If you're doing this by hand, you would want to continue adding until the dough isn't sticky anymore on greased hands.

I let my dough rest for about 15 minutes and then shape it into loaves and put it into greased bread pans.
For this bread I like to slash the tops of the bread, brush them with a mixture of egg-white and milk and then sprinkle the top with oatmeal.



Bake at 375 for 40 minutes.

Pop those babies out of their pans as soon as you take them out of the oven and enjoy once they are cool enough to handle!

When they have completely cooled you can bag them and freeze for later use.















This post is one in an ongoing series called {31 days of Uncommon Creativity}.  If you'd like to start back at the beginning you can do so by clicking here!  You can find a lot of other 31 day-ers over at Nesting Place. go check it out you may find some great stuff there that is just begging for you to read it!


*eucharisteo*
Grace * Thanksgiving * Joy

You will also find me on:
Facebook:  Lani Fast Wiens
Twitter:  @flowerlady77
Pinterest: lanireneewiens

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Words for Wednesday {17} - Gratitude

I received a pack of stickers for scrapbooking in the mail and there were some wonderful gratitude filled thoughts that I'd like to share with you today!  I hope they fill your cup today and help you along your journey of giving thanks in all things!

"To speak gratitude is courteous and pleasant, to enact gratitude is generous and noble, but to live gratitude is to touch heaven."    
- Johannes A. Gaertner

"For each new morning with its light, for rest and shelter of the night, for health and food for love and friends, for everything thy goodness sends."
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Thanksgiving, after all, is a word of action."
- WJ Cameron

"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them."
- John F. Kennedy

"Change your thoughts and you change your world."
- Norman Vincent Peale

There are a whole lot more of these amazing quotes and I think I will share them with you next week! Until then, be thankful!

Blessings, live out gratitude today!

I've lost count but I need to carry on my list.  I know I've counted over 2000, so perhaps I'll start there!

2001.  a warm house on a blustery day
2002.  the gift of giving away
2003.  the feeling of lightness when you let go of things
2004.  anticipation
2005.  a gracious man to live with
2006.  curried carrot soup!! YUM
2007.  a daughter with an eye for fashion
2008.  pink boas
2009.  the lost things returned
2010.  a strong son to carry things for me


This post is one in an ongoing series called {31 days of Uncommon Creativity}.  If you'd like to start back at the beginning you can do so by clicking here!  You can find a lot of other 31 day-ers over at Nesting Place. go check it out you may find some great stuff there that is just begging for you to read it!


*eucharisteo*
Grace * Thanksgiving * Joy

You will also find me on:
Facebook:  Lani Fast Wiens
Twitter:  @flowerlady77
Pinterest: lanireneewiens

Linked in at:
holy experience



Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Waterfall {Day 16}

I was pondering what to write about today so I asked two of my boys what they thought of when considering God's creativity.  The younger of the two immediately brought up creation, which is rather epic!  The older of the two said, "That's way too general."  He pondered for a moment and said, "Niagara Falls - that's creative!"

We then started talking about various waterfalls we've seen or know about and I have to admit, if you look at even one aspect of creation, the infinite variety that is there is startling. Some are huge with crashing and roaring, some so gentle and ethereal, I love waterfalls!  So rather than bore you with my thoughts I decided to show you a few photos of God's creativity..in the waterfall.
Niagara Falls
Bridal Veil Falls
Takaka Falls
somewhere in the Canadian Rockies

All of these waterfalls are in Canada!

This post is one in an ongoing series called {31 days of Uncommon Creativity}.  If you'd like to start back at the beginning you can do so by clicking here!  You can find a lot of other 31 day-ers over at Nesting Place. go check it out you may find some great stuff there that is just begging for you to read it!

*eucharisteo*
Grace * Thanksgiving * Joy

You will also find me on:
Facebook:  Lani Fast Wiens
Twitter:  @flowerlady77
Pinterest: lanireneewiens