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Monday, May 29, 2017

Some Gave All - Happy Memorial Day

Good morning! 

Who knows what day it is?

Memorial Day - Remember Our Fallen:
*From Pinterest

Yes, it is Memorial Day! A wonderful day set aside specifically to honor those who died in the line of duty.

Let us not forget this Memorial Day. Thank you to all who have served and are currently serving!:
*From Pinterest

If you would like to read last year's Memorial Day post, click here. :)

I never will forget those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. I am so thankful for those who are willing to risk their lives just so that we could live in freedom.

It also reminds me of a man Who gave His life, so that we could have eternal freedom! <3 

Below is a poem I wrote sometime last year (also in last year's in MD post), but it is a better-edited version. :)

Freedom's Price
A Poem by Livi Jane

As I kneel before this grave,
Of a soldier, unknown, but brave,
Tears are streaming down my face,
And I close my eyes in silent thanks.
For the life he lived, the battles he fought,
Buried here, likely long forgot.
My eyes open, and I gaze across,
The tombstones of many soldiers lost.
Unknown to the world, they rest here,
And I brush away another tear.
I remember on this Memorial Day,
They’re the reason we can celebrate.
Our freedom, our rights, we owe it to these men,
Who fought fearlessly for our country, time and again.
To every soldier that paid with their lives,
There’s no way to thank you for your sacrifice.
So we salute our fallen soldiers, the ones in action too,
And all we can say to repay is a heartfelt thank you!

*~*~*~*

I recently stumbled across another Memorial Day story I wrote over a year ago. It's not very long at all, just a quick reminder on what Memorial Day is actually about. :)

Remember Why: 

“Hi! Mind if I sit here?”

Without waiting for a response, nine-year-old Addison Wheeler slid into the cafeteria seat, setting her lunch tray down on the small table.

“Um, sure," the timid voice of Callie Freeman answered, although the agreement was unnecessary.

Addison wasn't sure what to think of her fellow fourth grader. Callie usually kept to herself, and none of the other classmates particularly tried to be friends with the girl.

It had been Addison’s first year at this new school after moving to Texas, and, being the outgoing person she was, had quickly become friends with most of the others in their class. It hadn't taken long for her to realize how shy Callie was. She had attempted to talk to the girl before, but with little success. Today, she noticed the girl sitting alone in the corner table and excused herself from her other friends to join Callie.

“I'm so excited that this is the last day of school!” Addy exclaimed, trying to make conversation. “I love summer!”

Callie didn't respond.

“Are you excited for Memorial Day?” Addy asked, voice rising with her own hype.

“Well—”

“We're going over my grandparents' house,” Addy chattered, shoving a loose strand of dirty blonde hair behind her ear. “We're gonna have a huge barbecue, and our cousins will be there, too! I'm so excited!” She finally paused to take a breath. “What are you doing for Memorial Day?” This time she quieted down and waited for Callie to answer.

The dark-haired girl gazed down at her tray of food for so long that Addy fidgeted in her seat, ready to burst open with her own words again.

She was just about to open her mouth when, without lifting her eyes, Callie hesitantly responded, her voice barely above a whisper.

“Well…I think we're just going to visit my daddy’s grave.”

Addison furrowed her eyebrows in puzzlement. “Why would you do that for a celebration?”

Callie’s voice dropped even lower, if that was possible. “He was killed serving in the army.”

“Oh.” Addison clapped a hand over her mouth, for once at a loss for words. “I am so sorry, Callie.”

“It's fine,” the girl responded, finally lifting her gaze to look at her classmate. “It's just that…so many people forget what Memorial Day is truly about.”

“They think it's a time to have a cookout and get together with family,” Addy agreed with a nod.

“Not that any of that's bad,” Callie hurriedly added. “But it should also be about remembering all the soldiers who died protecting us.”

“Like your dad,” Addy said with a slow nod, the wheels in her head turning as realization slowly crawled across her young face.

“I'll remember that from now on, Callie,” she promised, her blue eyes solemn. “And I'll make sure I'll never forget it.”

A tiny smile turned up the corners of Callie’s mouth.

“Thanks, Addison.”

*~*~*~*

“Mom, look at this!”

Callie pointed down at the grass in front of the tombstone bearing her father’s name while she waited for her mother to catch up with her. “Somebody left these beautiful flowers!” She picked up the bouquet. “And there's even an American flag with them.”

“They're very pretty,” Callie’s mom agreed. “I wonder who would have put them there? Perhaps the gardener…?”

“No.” Callie shook her head firmly, a huge smile sliding onto her face as she pulled a tiny card out of the bouquet.

Happy Memorial Day! the card read. I hope you like the flowers. My mom helped me pick them out. We are praying for you and your family!

Your friend,
Addison

Callie felt tears welling up behind her eyes at the kind words. One escaped and dripped down her cheek.
“Thanks, Addy,” she whispered as her own mother pulled her close. She squeezed her eyes shut. “And thank You, God, for sending me a friend like her.”

*~*~*~*

I think that just about wraps up today's post! I hope you all a wonderful day honoring the men and women who died for our country and celebrating the freedom for which they have fought!

~Livi Jane

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Memorial Day Memories - A Blogging Linkup

Happy Saturday! Hope everyone is doing well!

Today, I am joining in a Memorial Day linkup, hosted by Jesseca!


Memorial Day, as many other patriotic holidays, is one of my favorites. It constantly amazes me how many are so willing to sacrifice themselves for us and our freedom! Memorial Day is a time to reflect on those who so selflessly gave their lives for us.

And that's what this linkup is all about! This weekend, bloggers are joining together to honor those from their own state/area who made the ultimate sacrifice.

For my part in this linkup, I chose to focus on Officer Matthew Gerald.

Gerald was one of three police officers killed in Baton Rouge on July 17, 2016 by a hate-filled man purposefully targeting policemen. Several other officers were wounded that day.

The reason I chose to focus on Officer Gerald was because of the story that unfolded in the months after his death--beauty in the heartache.

Dechia Gerald, wife of the fallen officer, remembered when she was deciding what to wear to the funeral, how her oldest daughter told her, "I don't know why you're complaining, because you're pregnant."

Only days later, the younger daughter told her the same thing, only elaborated more.
"Jesus told me that there is a baby boy in your tummy."

Just a couple months later, Mrs. Gerald revealed the news that she was expecting. The baby was due in April, and when they had the ultrasound to determine the gender, they found out they were having a boy!

*Taken from a news article:

Officer Matthew Gerald of the Baton Rouge Police Department died in the line of duty on July 17, 2016. It was after his death that his wife, Dechia, realized her late husband had left her something special to remember him by. She conceived just five days before he died. His brothers in blue called Gerald "Buttons," so now his little boy will carry on the name “Baby Buttons.”

God's miracle came into the world Tuesday. Falyn Matthew Gerald was born at 4:31 p.m. He weighs 6 lbs., 8 ounces and is 19.5 inches long.

Dechia has worn her husband's wedding ring as a necklace ever since the attack last summer. When she held “Baby Buttons” for the first time, he held tight to that ring.

“It was very overwhelming... very emotional. Every emotion you could imagine comes at one time, all at once, but it's very exciting,” Dechia added.

*~*~*~*

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*Photo from WBRZ

*~*~*~*

It's amazing how God can bring such wonderful things from tragedies! <3

As Memorial Day approaches, I urge you to take some time and think on those who gave their lives for our freedom.

Thanks so much for joining me today! Check out Jesseca's blog for more posts about this linkup, and check back here Monday for a Memorial Day poem and story!

Have a wonderful weekend and happy start of summer!

~Livi Jane

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Armed Forces Day

Hey y'all!

Yes, I disappeared again. Life has been, well, crazy. I didn't have access to a computer that accommodated Blogger, hence why the posts have been scarce lately.

Anyway...

This past Saturday was Armed Forces Day, a day to recognize and show appreciation to those serving in the Armed Forces.

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I started the day off by running my first 5k ever to support the police officers injured in a shooting last July. It was SO much fun (even though I was dying XD), and thankfully the bad weather held off until the race finished up!

So, in honor of the men and women who selflessly risk their lives to serve our country, I have a poem to share. Hope you enjoy. 

And remember, freedom comes at a price!


Some Gave All
~A Poem by Livi Jane~

All gave some, but some gave all,
Only a few answered the call.
To risk their lives, to fight for our land,
They were the brave, they took a stand.
Our thankfulness for their courage reaches no end,
We're grateful for their willingness to fight and defend.
We pray for their protection, God’s guidance and direction,
As they keep this country safe.


*~*~*~*

What did you think? 

Hope everyone is having a wonderful day!

~Livi Jane









Tuesday, May 16, 2017

From Where Did God Come?

Hello, all!

How was everyone's Mother's Day? Ours was a blast! The whole weekend was spent with family, food, and fun! :D

Hope your week has been wonderful so far!

I apologize in advance for the fact that my posts may become a bit scarce, as I'll be very busy these next few weeks. ;)

*~*~*~*

Book of the Week Challenge:

I'm keeping up with this much better than I thought I might, just with the craziness of life this month. But, so far, I've kept up, and actually a little bit ahead!

*~*~*~*

Today, I'm dropping in with a quick video. I heard this a while back and was amazed at this man's answer to the question, "Where did God come from?"
His answer is wonderful:



(If you can't/don't want to watch the video) here's a summary:
  • The question 'where did God come from" displays you are thinking of the wrong God. Because the God of the Bible isn't limited by time, space, or matter. If He were, He wouldn't be God.
  • Time, space, and matter must all come into existence at once. If you had time and matter but no space, where would you put it? If you had space and matter but no time, when would you put it? So they must all come together at once. The Bible answers that in ten words. "In the beginning (time), God created  the heavens (space) and the earth (matter)."
  • If I could fit the infinite God in my three-pound brain, He wouldn't be worth worshiping, that's for sure.
  • If your brain is just a random collection of chemicals, how can you trust your own reasoning and the thoughts you think?

Hope y'all enjoyed (I know I did)! 

Have a happy Tuesday!

~Livi Jane

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Send a Book!

Hello, peoples!! *waves*

*Gasp* Three posts in one week? What's up with that? I guess it's a good thing! XD

How has life been? Mine, honestly, has been a little stressful lately! But God is in control! :) Plus, I'm at Fine Arts districts right now with our youth group!! Eek! I'm so nervous to see how my entries come back from the judges! (I have two friends who also entered some of the same categories I did, so it'll be interesting to see the results!)

Today, I have something really cool to share with you all! (Hint: it includes BOOKS!!)

So welcome to the...

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The rules are simple and the results are awesome! (It's about books, so what could be better?)

Contact me by email, the Contact Me form on the right sidebar, or Google Hangouts (livi.81700@gmail.com) for the full info and rules!

All you have to do to participate is send a favorite book of yours to a stranger (I'll send you the name/address). You only have to send one book. The books that show up at your door, in return, will be other people's much loved stories!!

Again, please contact me if you're interested or would like more details! :D Also, you can just comment on this post if you are interested in particpating and I'll send you the info!

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~Livi Jane

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Already May!

Happy May, folks!

Can you believe we're already five months into 2017?

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Let's dive right into April's highlights! ;)

April Highlights:
  • I sent in my Fine Arts writing entries! (Eek!)
  • I had a fun hangout one afternoon with one of my best friends. :D
  • I discovered the Overdrive app!! Endless books!!!!!
  • I read the first two books in the Montana Rescue series (and surprisingly enjoyed them, despite the main theme being romance) and now I'm looking forward to the next book coming out this summer! (Why can't I ever seem to find complete book series???)
  • One of my friends read my draft of S&S and designed a beautiful cover for me! 
Writing:

I didn't end up participating in Camp NaNo this year, but I did manage to get some writing done! I had a random plot that I've had a little idea about for almost a year now that jumped out at me when I was looking through my writing stuff, so I went with it and ended up writing a lot there... Although honestly now that I've gotten it out of my head, I have no clue what to write and no motivation. Yay. XD
On the plus side, I picked up a western that I started from last Camp NaNo (in July 2016, I believe). I'm working a little bit on that, but I also have another western idea (sorta) that wants to make an appearance. Trying to decide what to go with on this... Honestly I just need to get back in the groove of consistently writing. I feel like I'm getting nothing worthwhile done XD

Reading:

I actually did more reading this past month than I have...I just seem to have been having trouble finding books to read lately...But I did find a couple I enjoyed! I even read several romance-themed books (laced with adventure, of course) and enjoyed them more than I thought I would...still not a romance fan at all. Bleck! Give me adventure, military, and sibling relationships any day! (P.S. Any book reccomendations welcome! XD)


Full of suspense, and even a bit of my favorite...brother relationships ;)

Looking forward to the release of this book in the summer!

Music:
  • I found a really cute song that I've had on repeat for a while. It's called Something Just Like This. :)
  • Live Like You're Loved by Hawk Nelson. <3
  • Hey Brother by Avicii
  • Ready Set Go by Royal Tailor
...and more! :p

April Goals:
  • Write at least 3,000 words. Yes!! I ended up writing 3,483 words this month! Which is good for me... At least I've kept up pretty well with this goal. It's mostly to keep me writing! Because if I didn't have it as goal, I'd probably do next to nothing... 
  • Organize my writings and figure out what project(s) on which I want/need to work. LOL, nerp!! The only thing I accomplished was going through all of my drafts and wanting to work on all of them but having no motivation. Yay Livi! XD
  • Completely finish chemistry. YASSSS!! Goodbye high school science! Getting closer!
  • Register for Fine Arts. Yep, plus I got my entries sent in and everything!! So close! Getting nervous!
  • Continue reading the bible every day. YES! :D
So, as you can see, I've accomplished most of my goals--excluding most of the writing ones. *nervous grin* I'm trying to work on that!

May Goals:
  • Write at least 3,000 words.
  • Do more reading than I have been recently.
  • Go to Fine Arts Districts competition (prayers would be appreciated!! I'm not doing any live performances this year, but I'm still nervous about how the results for my entries will come out)!
  • Finally go to a crawfish boil this year... (Hopefully happening next week for our workplace's annual crawfish boil/party. ;P)
  • Continue reading the bible every day.
*~*~*~*

How was your April? For those of you who participated, how did Camp NaNo go?

What's on your to-do list for May? Let me know!

~Livi Jane

Monday, May 1, 2017

Book a Week Challenge

Morning, friends!

By the title, you can probably guess what this post will be about. :p

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So, I'll admit I haven't been doing the best with reading lately. Which is sad, because I love reading...I think I've just been too focused on finding the "perfect" book to read, one that I'll love. Obviously, there's very few books that will totally be everything you expect/love to read.
Honestly, sometimes you even need to read that one non-fiction book or genre you dislike.

Anyway, all that to say, I'm going to start a challenge for myself and anyone who wants to join in (I know many of you already have your own reading goals, but you are more than welcome to jump in if you'd wish)!

All you have to do is, well:

Read at least one book every week! (Two weeks if you think the book is too long to take on in just one week.) ;)

Doesn't matter how long or short it is, just read one! Then let me know in the comments (or your own blog post) which book you read and (if you want) your basic thoughts on it (you can even just say if you loved it, hated it, or didn't care for it). ;p Or, you don't have to tell anyone, just read the book! That works, too!

But I want to have accountability to others, you, my blog readers, so that I don't just wave it away with an "I'll read it later" kind of thing. ;)

I'm going to start this off by saying I'll try it out for a month (starting today, May 1) and see how it goes.

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Ready, set....

READ!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

~Livi Jane

P.S. Monthly recap coming Wednesday!!