Monday, December 31, 2012

Looking Back and Looking Forward: A Year In Review

Here I am. It's December 31, 2012. I can hardly believe that a new year is already upon us, but at the same time, I have never been more excited and optimistic. Looking back on 2012, I really can't quite believe how blessed I've been. It has been a full year and a good one. It's been filled with good and a little hard, but more laughter than tears.

It's been a year of learning and growing and learning how to move on. 2012 held my first CYT musical, my first 10K race, my first pair of tap shoes, and even my first photo shoots. This was the year that my Dad graduated seminary with his Masters in Divinity, and we celebrated with vacation in Florida. I turned sixteen and am experiencing another year of the in-between, but with patience and realization of how important it is to be content where I am. After two years of procrastinating, I passed my permit test and got my Learner's Permit. This year brought another year of our camp for young girls, Camp Come On In.  I was a counselor to Anna at Camp Barnabas for the first time and learned how to love when it was 104 degrees and I wanted to collapse. I learned to trust God a little more-- that we can pray, and we can talk, and try to convince someone of His incredible love and truth, but only His Holy Spirit can change hearts. In August I traveled by myself for the first time to meet miss Olivia. We had unreal adventures and drank lots of coffee. I got to second-shoot my first wedding with her and learn some life lessons while I was at it. August also took my brother a few hours away. And October took Adele even farther away. But through this year I have seen my faith grow, and I've seen God provide. I've heard the Lord speak to me, and at times I've chosen not to listen… but He always gets the last word and reminds me that He is in control. At times I've been amazed at how clearly He's spoken. And His word continues to amaze me. 

This year, I have lists and scribbles of things I want to do, of the ways I want to grow and the person I want to become. I want to live a contented, adventurous, creative, book-devouring, Word-filled, Spirit-filled, joy-choosing, and joy scattering life. I sincerely want to be an encouragement to everyone around me, especially when it's hard and when I'd rather keep my pride. I want to study my Bible. I want to know it so well that the pages are worn and tattered, and I know it like the back of my hand. Memorization is also top priority. I truly desire to be in constant communion with God, talking to Him and calling on Him at every turn. I want to be the hands and feet of Christ; to serve Him with my life, not just when it's glamourous, or a missions trip, but when I'm unloading the dishwasher or talking to a lonely wallflower. 

My theme verses for 2013 are these:

Philippians 2:3-4
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility
consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only
to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.

I just really want this year to be remarkable. I want to do something remarkable. I don't want to look back and regret not doing something because I was afraid. And sometimes the remarkable things are the little things, but even they can take a great deal of courage. 

Here are some of my other goals: Launch my business: Pure Joy Photography // Head-shoot my first wedding // Get my driver's license // Read 20 books // Write some stuff // Perhaps go back to Africa! //

But my goodness! I have said "I" way too many times! What are you planning for the coming year? What was your best moment of 2012? Any funny stories? I'd love to hear about them in that little comment box down there. :) To finish up, here's a little revue of the year with some of my favorite photos. Thanks for journeying with me this year, friends. Happy 2013!

with 9.7 billion photos,
your authoress

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Emily, Rosie, etc.

You probably remember Emily, who I sometimes refer to as "Rosie". She is a dear friend of mine, fellow tap dancer, chemistry partner, adventurer, and creative jack of all trades. I'm pretty sure that a good half of the laughs in my little lifetime have been shared with her in all of our craziness. However, sometimes our innumerable jokes get the better of us when we're on stage and can't help but laugh when we're supposed to be yelling at each other in contempt… our last play together was a good lesson in how to suppress a smile or chortle, though I'm pretty sure I failed slightly during our performance. Last month Em came over for a "party" (at least, that's what we call it). Here are the results from our mini golden hour shoot.

… But wait, there's more! ;) It snowed a few days ago, so after we finished studying chemistry on Thursday, we tromped into the woods for a little winter wonderland set. My toes froze, but my vintage wool coat kept me cozy for the most part-- and I think the result was worth the numbness. 

In the past few weeks, I've had a few little bursts of inspiration with my work, but I'm really trying to iron some things out. I'm wanting to figure out if turning my photography into a business is a wise idea, so I've been praying and thinking about it. I know there is a lot of work involved in having a full-fledged business, a lot more stress, and a great deal of confidence required. But all in all, I think that being able to do something I really enjoy as a job would be such a blessing! Not only would I be able to do what I love, but I'd also be able to bless other people. Seems to me that that beats a "normal" job any day.

I hope you all are having a wonderful Christmas break-- and I hope you have a very merry Christmas!

Lindsey Lou