Thanksgiving Break, etc.

As of yesterday afternoon, I am on thanksgiving break! It feels so good to be able to relax a bit. To be honest, I slept in today and took lots of little naps (I am SO overtired… I’m trying to slowly “pay back” my “sleep debt”, haha). It will be good to have this break. I’ve had time to do fun things, such as leisurely scrolling through Pinterest, or reading for pleasure, and it has been so nice.

By the way, while I am on the topic of reading, the other day I was wondering what I should do with my spare time, when I’m not in the Word, or socializing, or being with my family, or doing necessary life things such as cooking, doing my hair, cleaning, etc., … and then I remembered that there are these things called BOOKS. And they are a different kind of book than the ones I’ve been required to read for the past three years (Aristotle, DesCartes’ Meditations, Goethe’s The Sorrows of Young Werther, Rousseau… not to complain, of course—I’m glad to have read these—but they’re not exactly FUN haha). I remembered that there are fun books, the type that makes one feel shivers of delight over the beauty of how the author using words, captured a human emotion just perfectly. I realized I have almost all of the L.M. Montgomery’s Anne series to finish, as well as a few books by Louisa May Alcott, and hey, when in doubt, I can always re-read Pride & Prejudice… and so I’ve started getting into reading for pleasure again. I am so happy, haha. I just finished Anne of Avonlea last night… oh, I love the Anne series so much. It’s so wonderful. Montgomery is such so observant, in the way she gives everyone such a unique and interesting personality, and she just knows the human mind and heart very well. She captures the beauty of friendship, and the difficulty of growing up and everything changing, and things like that so well. I just started the third book, Anne of the Island, but haven’t gotten very far into it yet.

Yesterday in class we explored texture by making rubbings of different surfaces… and blowing ink bubbles. It was so cool! We used this dishsoap/water mixture, poured some water-based ink into it, and used those little black coffee straws to blow bubbles onto paper and make cool little designs. How artsy. (No ink was accidentally consumed, don’t you worry.) We used this glossy type of paper (like the type most magazines use, but a little more dense), which didn’t fully absorb the ink, but kept it mostly to the surface of the paper. The results were pretty rad:

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So fun! That first one is currently the background on my phone.

On a serious note now—I was marveling today… you know what’s absolutely wonderful? Having a solid hope to lean on no matter the circumstance. I’m talking about the Gospel here. Praise God for the Gospel. Life has been hard sometimes, with illness, and adjusting to a new season, and minor depression, not to mention the fact that I am a sinner, and fail multiple times a day and feel awful… but in all of this, I know one thing that is for sure: I belong to Christ. In Him my sins are forgiven.

“My sin is nailed to the cross

My soul is healed by the scars

The weight of guilt I bear no more

Praise the LORD, praise the LORD!”

– Rend Collective, Nailed to the Cross (this song has kind of been my anthem these days… so good and so full of truth)

And because I don’t bear the guilt of my sin anymore, I know a freedom that stays with me even when life is hard. Though I may not have happiness, I can have Joy. Though at times I may not feel free, I know I am, because the Bible—God’s Word, which is truth—says I am free in Christ. And I can trust God’s word, because God is not a liar. I was reading the first few verses of Romans 5 and thinking about the first part of Ephesians 2 today, and wow. While I was dead in my sins, and didn’t care, and was living like hell, following the enemy, who is at work in the sons of disobedience, doing and embracing DEATH, SIN, everything awful—God, in His great love for me, sent His perfect Son to become the sacrifice for my sin. Christ did this willingly, taking the wrath of the Father that I deserved to bear—on Himself. He died, and my sins died with Him. He rose again, because He has complete power over death, but my sin stayed in the grave. Sin, death, satan, are darkness are now defeated, and Christ reigns! Oh what freedom! I am no longer bound by these things… I am forgiven, set free by the sacrifice of Christ! “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” … (Ephesians 2:8-9) This is the hope I have when I can hardly see past my doubts, when I’m feeling sick and don’t know if I will ever find physical healing in this life, when I feel crushed by the weight of my sin. It is finished. (John 19:30) The cry of victory is my anthem, my battle cry. There is still a war to fight, but the outcome has already been decided, and my Captain is the Victor.

Tomorrow’s Thanksgiving! That’s exciting. But I try to be thankful every day, so even though it’s great to have a day every year to focus of gratitude, in my book every day should be thanksgiving. (I’m talking about the focus of the holiday, not all the food… then all things pumpkin and cranberry wouldn’t be quite so special!) But in light of tomorrow, and also because I don’t want to write another post tomorrow, I thought I might devote this little paragraph (or more like the list following this little paragraph) to gratitude. So with that, I’m thankful for:

  • (for the millionth time) God’s abundant grace in Christ. What love. What undeserved love. There is nothing better than this.
  • Friends. What blessings.
  • making new friends.
  • family.
  • music that feeds the soul (namely, worship music)
  • the warm, gentle glow of Christmas lights.
  • having a backup device when my laptop decides to go berserk.
  • days when I feel well and joyful.
  • the human ability to tell stories. And how that ability is a gift from God, and… He is the Author of a Story. Whoa.
  • the ability to create. Also a gift from God. Similarly, God is the Creator of the universe. *mind blown every time I think of this*
  • God’s Word, and the freedom to own it.
  • breaks during the semester.
  • being able to study what I’m wired to do. (Theology is great. Love it. I don’t feel called to be a theologian. Design, however… aw yeah.)
  • sleep. (I wish I got more of it.)
  • poetry. Writing it, and reading it.
  • getting a hug from a friend when I’m having a hard day.
  • Sunlight.
  • One-on-one time with people I love.
  • smoothies.
  • the foods I can eat.
  • adventures.
  • good memories.
  • heartwarming books.

What are you thankful for? How are you spending Thanksgiving? How are you students spending Thanksgiving break? Any good book recommendations?


— M


Bullet Journaling!

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(Notebook from Rifle Paper Co.  If titling a bullet-journal “the bullet journal” is a newbie-ish thing to do, oops, whatever.)

So a while back I discovered bullet-journaling, and decided to start one of my own.  I’m learning about this whole thing as I go, but I think there isn’t a wrong way to do it.  I’ve decided to go more visual and avoid a bullet system of any sort (except in lists).  Here’s most of what I have so far:

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I’m doing washi tape tabs on the pages.  Tabs on the top of a page somewhat separate months, and tabs on the sides are for the fun pages – you know, lists, ideas, all that stuff.

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Above is the layout of the planner pages.  (My bullet-journal is mostly a planner with a few other features… I don’t know if that is how most people do it, but whatever.)

Those bars you see on the right of each “day” are for keeping track of water consumption, as shown below (this is the first page of my journal).  Due to the shocking lack of water I consume each day, I thought this to be a necessary feature.  =)  I looked up how many ounces a person my size needs (about 80 oz), and found that 80 ounces is 4 20-oz. waterbottles’ worth of water.  I own a 20 oz. waterbottle, so measurements should be easy.

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Below are the non-planner parts of the bullet-journal:

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I thought it would be handy to keep a little grocery list in there in case I should need it. =)

Do you bullet-journal?  What do you put in yours?  If you have any tips or ideas for a novice, they would be most welcome!

Life – 05/23

Hey everyone!  How are you all?  I am doing pretty well.  So far, this summer has been quite structure-less and full of socializing.  It’s been really nice.

Last Wednesday I went swing dancing.  The event was held at a really nice park pavilion overlooking a lake.  I went with my friend, and we had a ton of fun.  I danced three times.  Dances are great, because when you aren’t dancing at the moment, you can people-watch.  There’s always that one girl there who’s wearing an absolutely crazy outfit, and that one guy who is determined to find himself a girlfriend by the end of the evening.  Also, watching people dance who know what they’re doing is quite pleasurable.

Yesterday my friends and I had a cookout at a park by a lake (a different park by a lake).  It was really nice – the weather was perfect.  A little ways off, there was a hispanic family probably having a family reunion or something – the occasion was probably pretty important, because there was literally a mariachi band playing for it.  That was pretty awesome.  After a couple hours, one of my friends and I went for a little walk, which was fun.  During which, I happened to look down at my feet at one point, and I found a little inchworm crawling on one of my Toms.  Ah yes, I had forgotten that this is the time of year where there are caterpillars, of which I have a quasi-phobia.  So I flicked it off.  At least it was tiny, and not one of those big, fat ones with extravagant designs on them.  I mean, they’re pretty amazing creatures that point to an amazing God – but they make me shudder.  By the time we walked back to our picnic spot, it was getting dark, and we parted ways.

When I haven’t been hanging with other people, I’ve been…

  • reading.
  • working on my novel a little bit.  I’ve got a few ideas in my head about how this storyline is going to go, and I’m excited.
  • brushing up on Polish.  I’ve been using Duolingo and Busuu for that.  They aren’t Rosetta Stone, but that’s okay; they have some handy features that Rosetta Stone does not.  On Busuu, for example, people who speak Polish can correct my Polish exercises (in which I have to write sentences using the limited vocabulary I have learned), and I and other English speakers can correct people’s English exercises.  It’s pretty great.
  • hand-lettering, of course.
  • painting, for the first time in a while!  I painted one of my favorite quotes on a canvas:










Sometimes Words Just Don’t Suffice


Made this just now (the poem is an original too).

You know when you feel such strong emotions – 

uncontrollable joy, 

or immense grief, 

or almost unbearable pain, 

or the feeling that you get when you’re sitting on the couch with a cup of tea, watching the rain fall outside and feeling like all is right with the world,

or a mixture of multiple emotions,

– and you want to describe those feelings as best you can?  And while words can sometimes do a pretty good job capturing thoughts and emotions, often they just can’t.

Sometimes words just don’t suffice.

Sometimes there are no words to describe that feeling of unsurpassable happiness I get when contemplating the Gospel.

And sometimes there are those days when I feel so low, and if I wanted to tell someone about it, I would have no idea how to perfectly describe how I feel.

Sometimes someone is having a bad day, or going through a really tough season, and I feel for them and want to let them know that.  But sometimes I can’t find the words to get that across.  So that’s where hugs come in.

Sometimes I look back at my life and see all the things God has done in my life, and I want to share my story, but I will never be able to share it so perfectly that people would understand EXACTLY how it went, but rather only get a small glimpse of the beauty of it all.  

I suppose though, that finding the right words takes practice – the more practice you get, the better you become.  It’s like a way of stretching the mind, to see just how creative one can be, how realistically one can describe whatever it is they are thinking of.

That was rather deep, I know.  Which is the way I like it.  Haha.



Thankfulness, A Field Trip, Lessons in Faith, etc.

A lot has happened since I last posted – so many lessons learned, memories made, things enjoyed.  I cannot believe how fast this semester has flown by; in a few weeks it will be over!  Here is a portion of what has happened within the past couple of months:


We’ve had a really warm, sunny fall over here, and it has been gorgeous.  I love fall so much.  =)  It’s been pretty decent teperature-wise up until this week, where the temperature dropped and the chilly winter winds picked up.  I’m excited that it’s time to break out the coat and mittens.  Bring on the snow!  (And I mean it; I love snow.  Until around February when it turns dirty grayish-brown from all the street sludge and car exhaust.  Then I can’t wait for spring.)

I finished a lettering project recently for a publishing house for a friend of mine.  I designed the logos, and I’m really excited how they turned out.  Can’t wait to see them in use!

These days God has been teaching me a lot.  I say that every week, but it’s true.  And I’m thankful that he keeps teaching me a lot.  =)  For a while until about a couple weeks ago I was worn out by school and because of this, really overtired and depressed.  In case I haven’t before, let me clarify: I love my school SO MUCH and and am so blessed to be studying here under such a wonderful curriculum and amazing professors.  I love what I’m learning, but the workload is pretty strenuous, and it’s easy to feel like I’m drowning sometimes.  Though I tried to fight it, I constantly was under this cloud of gloom and negativity, like I am not doing well.  I am going to fail.  There is no hope.  And if I caught myself telling myself this, I would stop and try to tell myself, NO.  Those are lies, Madeline.  I mean, even if you do fail, that is not the end of the world.  God has a plan for your life.  Trust him.  Ask him for strength.  Don’t worry about the future.  But I couldn’t really shake it for a while.  However, looking back, I see God’s grace in helping me through the rut.  I had a few really good conversations with a couple classmates about this, and I found that I was not alone; that I was not the only one who felt weary and overwhelmed.  After that, God basically shoved two verses in my face – ones that really spoke to me.  I only remember what one of them was, and I heard it in Greek class.  My Greek prof opens every class period with a verse – in Greek, of course – which we read and translate, and then he unpacks the verse.  Well this one time, he chose Philippians 4:6-7:

do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7 ESV)

 And I’m sitting there listening to Professor Matt explain the passage as I start to tear up and am like, Wow, God.  THANK YOU.  For the rest of the week, that (as well as one other verse that I found which I can’t remember) was recalled again and again as I preached to myself:  Don’t be anxious, Madeline!  Ask God for help!  He is Your heavenly Father who loves to give good things to his children!  Ask him for help with this seemingly impossible assignment!  He is able to help me do this!  Besides those verses, one Sunday our pastor preached a sermon that was just PERFECT.  The gist of it was this:  “Where you look tends to control your outlook” and “What you see by faith is more decisive and more defining than what you see by sight.”  It got me thinking, OH! By sight, I see an overwhelming task ahead of me, and it’s weighing me down.  I’m letting it ruin my life because I’m not looking at it from faith – instead of looking at it with the mindset of “okay, God put this task before me, and it looks impossible.  But!  He is able to help me do this!  Okay, LORD, help me!” and tackling it, trusting in his strength, I’ve been looking to my own strength and realizing my insignificance, forgetting that I have a God who I can ask for help.  Lord, forgive me!  Teach me to look to you in this, and give me the strength and endurance to do it faithfully!  So I was really blessed by that sermon.  Then, what do ya know!  I then went downstairs to help out in the youth group, as I do every week, and the lesson the youth leader taught was ALSO on faith.  What.  I went home that day, and I was just marveling.  Okay, God.  I have no words.  You are AMAZING.  Thank you for teaching me this.  Forgive me for my doubtfulness.  May I learn to trust You!  After that, by God’s grace, the nervousness, the panicking over the schedule ahead of me, the sobbing on my bunk as if there wasn’t any hope (how embarrassing…) and all that… pretty much ceased.  God gave me a more positive outlook.  I still felt overwhelmed, but I realized this:  God is in control.  He has a wonderful plan for my life.  Even if I don’t end up doing well in school, that doesn’t mean I’m stupid, and it doesn’t define who I am; my identity is in Christ, and Christ is what matters most.  HE is the reason why I live and move and have my being; I live to honor HIM.  Grades do not matter as much as he does, and I should not let this ruin my joy.  Things have been a lot better since then.

Over the summer, I started a notebook which I titled “Myriads of Graces”.  I write down the many things things God has done in my life, things he has blessed me with, and things that simply make me smile.  Two things inspired me to do this: the first being Psalm 103, which starts out with “Bless the LORD, O my soul”.  Recalling the millions of things he has done for me is one way that causes my heart to praise him – Wow, LORD, thank you!  You are such a loving Father, and you have blessed me with SO many good things I don’t deserve!  The second thing that inspired me was a message that one of the professors at my school spoke to some of the students, which was on the importance of cultivating a heart of gratitude towards God for all that he has done – and ultimately, for who he is.  Gratitude leads to worship (it should, anyway).  He defined gratitude as “a glad-hearted reception of God’s grace through his gifts”, and told of ways he exercises thankfulness in his own life.  He mentioned that one way was by making a list of a things that bring him joy – two of his examples being “wool socks” and “peanut M&Ms”.  (Those are some pretty solid examples…)  So this past summer, I started my own thankfulness notebook, and it has been wonderful.  Here are just a few things I have written:

  • God’s love for me.
  • The ability to create.
  • Healing from migraines.
  • The way sun shines through trees and illuminates the leaves.
  • Friends that you can have inside jokes with, tell anything, laugh or cry with.  You know, the best kind of friend.
  • Curry.
  • Bacon.
  • Hot chocolate.
  • Hugs – long ones.
  • Wildflowers.
  • Happy memories.
  • Water when you’re in desperate need of it.
  • Laughter.
  • Fall colors.
  • Jazz.
  • Dancing.
  • Corporate worship.
  • The book of Romans.
  • Art.
  • Reading for pleasure.
  • Showers.
  • Wearing pretty dresses.
  • Texting long into the night with sisters and laughing about inside jokes that only we understand.

You should start your own thankfulness notebook – it’s pretty fun.  =)

Greek, as usual, has been super enjoyable.  I love the satisfaction of being able to read verses in Greek and knowing what they say!  It is definitely hard work though memorizing all those paradigms and vocabulary words.  Wow.  Currently we are trying to memorize the Imperfect Active Indicative forms of λύω, and I’m still trying to get my prepositions down.  A couple months ago I started writing whatever I needed to memorize down and placing it where I would see it – First Declension forms on the whiteboard in my room, prepositions in a plastic bag stuck to the wall of the shower, etc.  All the work memorizing pays off though.  Greek is pretty awesome.


I used to avoid sugar, preservatives, and unhealthy things in general, because I would get really bad migraines – like the kind that would sometimes cause temporary paralysis in some parts of my body, such as the right arm and sometimes the tongue, and would, on rare occasions, affect mental clarity (not in a weird way, but just that I wouldn’t be able to figure out the answer to six times four, or not be able to read words on a page.)  Once I would get them, the only thing I could do was sleep it off; I wasn’t comfortable using medication.  I started getting them when I was about 11, and then at one point when I was about 12 or 13, I started getting them pretty much on a daily basis.  It was a trying season of my life, but I did find that if I took fish oil and avoided sugar and anything artificial, they wouldn’t happen quite as often.  So I avoided sugar, dyes, preservatives, artificial flavors, and chocolate like the plague.  Then God chose to heal me.  A doctor found out what was wrong with me, and did what he could, and eventually the migraines became lesser and lesser, until instead of getting them daily or even weekly, I got them only about once a year.  I’ve been almost completely free of migraines for a few years now, and just recently have been introducing previously avoided things back into my life: sugar, chocolate and certain types of preservatives – not to intake on a regular basis, but just as a treat every now and then.  It’s awesome to be able to literally eat a gluten-free cookie, or pop an altoid in my mouth, and not worry about getting a migraine from it.  Last Tuesday I literally ate REAL ice cream, Breyers mint chocolate chip even (my favorite kind!), and it was THE BOMB DOT COM.  It’s so awesome to be able to have things like this again.  =)  FREEDOM!

We have mice.  And it’s disgusting.  I hear them scutter around and squeak in the walls at night, and I wonder how many there are in this house.  I saw one run out of the bathroom once (what on earth was it doing in there?), and hear them in the kitchen every so often.  Sometimes I can’t help thinking about that scene in Ratatouille when the ceiling comes crashing down and the old lady finds out that a whole rat colony has been living in her attic.  Ughhhhhh.  *shudders*  Thankfully, one of my housemates has stocked up on mousetraps (16 of them, to be exact).  I hope we find some dead ones soon.  (Ooh, I heard one just now.  Sick.)

These days our class have been studying Catholicism and the Reformation (woohoo!).  Because of our recent study of Catholicism, our class went on a field trip to a beautiful cathedral, where we attended the mass.  You know, if you’ve been studying Catholicism, it makes sense to see it in action, right?  It was my first time attending a mass.  When we walked inside the cathedral, I was like, WHOA.  It was so beautiful!  I wonder how much money – and TIME! – it took to build that thing?  When mass was over we walked slowly around, admiring all the elaborately detailed architecture.  I kind of felt like Lizzy Bennet walking through Pemberley, in the 2005 version of Pride and Prejudice.  When we left the cathedral, we went to an Italian restaurant and had supper (well, I only had some pineapple, haha) while we fellowshipped, talked about the mass and what we thought about it, and enjoyed each other’s company.  We had such a good time.  Ah… I love my class so much.

Other various enjoyments:

  • Ask Pastor John podcasts.  Desiring God’s got an app for it, and you should download it.  =)  Each podcast is about 5 minutes long, and there are ones for almost every topic imaginable, and you can submit a question for Piper to answer.
  • Dancing around to Rend Collective’s new album while I cook or clean my room.
  • Occasional leisure time (such as right now, as I am typing this post!).
  • Writing out passages of the Bible and sticking them to my wall.  I’m realizing more and more that to fight the fight of faith well, I need to be well-versed in God’s Word, so I’m working on memorizing a few passages, like Ephesians 2:1-10 or 1 Peter 1:3-9.
  • Bacon.  I found some natural bacon (though I can handle some types of preservatives, I avoid those found in meat.  Thus, bacon was off limits for me) at Target yesterday, and fried some up almost as soon as I got home.  Guys, it was the first bacon I’ve had in years.  Wow.

Happy weekend!


Life Capsule – 04/13

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We are so close to the end of the semester, it’s crazy!  Trying to finish strong.  Studies are very interesting.  We’re studying early church history and reading through the Epistles.  Yesterday I read the entire book of Hebrews.  Such a good book; probably one of my favorites in the Bible.  God has been teaching me a LOT lately.  We’ve been wrestling with a lot of topics: doctrines, salvation, sin/grace… all sorts of things.  A few days ago we had a class on the five points of Calvinism, and it was very intriguing, though I didn’t fully understand everything.  Also we’ve been memorizing Romans 8, and we’ve gotten as far as verse 27.  Romans 8 is the bomb.  So glad that we’re memorizing it this semester.  Seriously, I just LOVE going to school here – every day I come away learning something new and amazing about this God I serve.  He is wonderful.


Also, God is currently teaching me to give myself grace when I fail, as He gave me grace through His Son.  I tend to be a perfectionist when it comes to my actions, and sometimes feel guilty for even the smallest mistakes I make. Guilt is definitely something I struggle with, even with things I have already taken to the LORD, and I need to keep reminding myself that these feelings of guilt are not from God, for “there is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1)” – Christ has forgiven me for everything wrong I have done, large or small.  Through Him, my slate is clean; I am justified!  I’m thankful that God has given me a hatred for sin, but reminding myself daily of His grace to us in Christ.  Wow.  What love, that Christ would take my penalty for sin upon Himself, and give me His righteousness instead!  He is so good.

And He is SO faithful, even in the hard days.  These days have been a little tough, to be honest; it’s kind of a fight for joy, with the workload and the sleep-deprivation, learning to every thought captive in obedience to Christ, and just the weaknesses that I’m not proud of (introspection, poor time-management, etc.).  But I’m learning to see these days as gifts; they remind me how utterly dependent I am on God for everything: life, breath, provision, faith, joy, etc.  If life were totally perfect, I wouldn’t see my need for Him, and that would be awful.  And through these trials, whether they be a massive paper I’m supposed to write, or the temptation to worry or doubt or complain about something, God is teaching me to look to Him for strength in these circumstances, and then supplying that strength abundantly.  His grace is totally sufficient.

These past couple weeks my friends and I have been enjoying going on little excursions around the city, taking pictures, playing games, going out for coffee, etc.  I’m so thankful to have such brothers and sisters as classmates.  I’ve been so blessed by the times we’ve spent, the laughs we’ve had, the jam sessions and game nights, the deep conversations about life, theology, Nichomachean Ethics, how to pronounce certain words, etc.  They’re amazing.  :)

Enjoying my new glasses and being able to see clearly again!  The first class I attended after getting them, I squirmed with delight at the fact that I could actually SEE what my professor was writing on the board, and could sit in the back of the class if I wanted!  (I still enjoy sitting up front though.)  :)  I wrote a cheesy little poem the day after getting my glasses:

O former glasses dead and gone,
We’re through (not sorry!); moving on
Not only ‘cause of your decease,
But time to start fresh, if you please.
Since you, I’ve found a better pair
That makes my face look twice as fair.
I chose you when I was thirteen,
My fashion sense was different then.
Now, I’m not saying you looked bad,
But getting new ones makes me glad.
For one can tire of red and blue
rectangular frames; let’s start anew.
So during my final teenage year
I left you for a more hipster
Type with slightly bigger frames
(Don’t worry, they don’t take o’er my face);
Brown; the tortoise kind. Sold!
Something fun but not TOO bold.
And so it happens, I confess,
That I couldn’t miss you less!
And so I hope that you don’t mind.
Thanks to the new ones, I’m no longer blind.

Haha  :)  Have a good week!

God bless,


Good Friday


Today is Good Friday, commemorating Jesus’ death and burial.  In His death, Christ Jesus faithfully finished the work God had for Him: to receive the sin and guilt of God’s children, to bear the punishment that they deserved.  The punishment of our sin is death.  But because of His death (and resurrection, which we will celebrate in two days!), we, by looking to Him, are freed from our bondage to sin and are welcomed back into the JOY of the Father as His own adopted children.  By His own death, Jesus conquered death, once and for all, and gave us eternal life!  Praise God for His grace and mercy!

Happy Holy Week,


These Past Few Weeks

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After a rather hectic week, with a mid-term exam and an extended paper, spring break has finally arrived!  I am so overjoyed.  I keep having this thought “I have things to work on” and then remember “Wait!  I don’t!”  What relief!  :)  It’ll be so nice to have a whole week to just unwind and rejuvenate.  I’m planning to do some pleasure-reading (i.e. The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis and The Things of Earth by Joe Rigney), write (during regular school days I never have the time to let my thoughts flow on paper as much as I’d like), draw, sleep, spend time with friends and get in the Word more.  This will be fantastic.

I am LOVING spring.  It’s so good for the soul!  The warm and sunny days, the fresh air, hearing the birds, being able to use my porch again, the ability to not have to wear a coat and don shorts and sandals/flip flops… ah.

In class we are doing New Testament Survey and Theology, which I am enjoying very much.  We recently read through and compared the content, the literary styles, and the backgrounds of the four gospels, then read Acts, and now we are studying the Epistles  Just yesterday I finished a big paper on the Kingdom of God.  It was interesting to write, and made me look forward to Christ’s return and the coming of His Kingdom.

I’ve started making handmade cards.  I had my very first client about a month ago, who wanted me to draw a portrait of Audrey Hepburn, so I did.  I’m working on opening an Etsy shop soon and sell cards and art prints; however, those probably will be high-quality printed versions of original drawings.  I don’t have time or energy to hand-draw every single product.  I’m a busy woman. :)

A couple weeks ago our school did a dodgeball tournament.  It was pretty awesome.  There were some pretty hilarious team names, such as “the Darth Graders” (professors and faculty, who showed up in Darth Vader costumes), “The Beach Bums” (my team, who wore shorts, tees, bro tanks… summery clothing) and “The Church Dodge-matics” (which is so delightfully nerdy).  However, towards the end of the tournament, I got hit hard in the face by a ball, hurting the top of my nose, and… breaking my glasses.  Oh no.  So for the past couple weeks, I’ve been living in a slightly blurry world, unable to read words from a distance (especially on the whiteboard in class) or people’s facial expressions from far away.  It’s pretty sad, but I’m learning to live with it.  The night after it happened, I wrote an ode to my glasses:

O Glasses!  Dear you were to me,

For you enabled me to see.

But now you’re dead and gone, and so

Blurred vision once again I know.

A couple days later, I borrowed these obnoxious fake hipster glasses from my sister, and wore them to class the next couple of days to see what people would say.  I got some surprising “cute glasses!” compliments, a “Those are actually growing on me!  You look cute in them!”, and a perplexed “…how do you like your new glasses, Madeline?” (to which I replied, “They’re fake.”  To which my friend replied, “Are you sure?“)  Haha!  :D  Thankfully, I just got some new ones (which are pretty funky and hipster, though not in an excessive way) a couple days ago, and God willing, they will be coming soon!  It’ll be nice to have clear vision again.  :)


This quote is one of my favorite quotes ever, and it’s played a pretty significant role in my life.  It’s been on my mind these past couple months.  God has been helping me improve in taking thoughts captive, recognizing untrue or sinful thoughts when they come, and replacing them with what is true and worthy of my thoughts.  He’s teaching me to set my mind “on things above, and not on things that are on earth (Colossians 3:2)”; to focus on Christ and make Him the center of my mind and affections.

God bless,


A Visit To The Museum

Well, today was a gorgeous, sunny fall day, and some of my friends and I visited a museum.  We had so much fun.  It had been years since I had been to a museum, so it was quite the experience for me.

Firstly, I was very intrigued by the architecture of the building.  It was so beautiful!  At times I felt like I was strolling through Pemberley.

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(this one’s a bit blurry; sorry about that)

My favorite exhibit was the one with REAL paintings.  And by real, I mean ones that actually take effort, look realistic, and depict interesting scenes.  The best part was hearing one of my friends make amusing comments about each one.  “Wow, the titles of the paintings are intense!  ‘Happy and Rowdy Peasants In the Streets’?”  And of a portrait of a guy from the Shakespearean era, who had quite the facial hair:  “I want to have a mustache just like that… but keep my beard.”

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One of my least favorite exhibits was the modern art exhibit.  Ugh.  My friends and I were walking around, saying “Aw, really?  Come on, modern art, come on!”  We were a bit disgusted at the state of most art these days.  It’s so haphazard, so postmodern, so “anything goes”, so effortless.   Some of the things I saw there were pretty disturbing and strange, and some were just ridiculous.  These below would fall under the ridiculous category:

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Is that handwriting, or scribbles?

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These are dog tags.  Ha, how clever.

For a while we walked through the exhibits featuring artifacts from India and Ancient China.  Though some of these artifacts were very interesting ceramics and intricately ornamented containers (boxes, vases, etc.), most of them consisted of statues of Buddha, Hindu gods and goddesses and Chinese gods, many of which looked very intimidating.  Not to mention all of the ritual items and things that were considered “sacred” or capable of bringing good luck, etc.  It made me sad to think that many people’s lives revolve around such a horrific mindset, and that people would do ridiculous things, thinking it would benefit them.  These people probably lived in so much fear!  I mean, the statues of their gods are not pleasant to look at!  I saw these heavy gold earrings, shaped like coiled snakes.  They were HUGE.  Like, once a person takes them out, their ears would probably hang low for the rest of their life.  Apparently women used to wear them in India, because they believed that they would protect them from harm or something.  It made me so thankful that I have Jesus  — all I have to do is put my trust in Him, and He’s all I need!

And then in one room I happened upon a very antique dollhouse.  Or maybe it was just a miniature to show what houses in such an era were like.  Whatever it was, it was the cutest thing.  I wish I could have taken a closer look at it.  I did get a close look at this one room…

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Isn’t that darling?  (Okay, now that I think about it, it looks to me like a gambling room.  That takes some of the cuteness away.  But all that miniature stuff… it’s so realistic.  Did you see the little book on the floor titled “How To Stop Smoking”?)  :D

I could have stayed there all day… there were so many exhibits.  But eventually we all decided to leave, get Chipotle, go home, watch some Tim Hawkins on YouTube for a while, and get back to homework.  Speaking of homework, that’s what I should go do right now.  :)  Until later!


Drawings & Photoshop

I’ve been taking some of my sketches to Photoshop, tracing over them and sometimes applying color, patterns, etc.  It’s pretty fun.  :)  Here’s what I’ve accomplished so far:




Shown below is the cover of a little book I’m working on.  It’s an informational guide (it’s supposed to be a joke) about hipsters and hipster-culture.  I made a rough draft in a notebook a few months ago while on vacation, soon after a relative asked me what it meant to be “hipster”.  I basically wrote it for him.  ;)

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Happy first day of June!