Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Run, Run, Rudolph...

This past weekend, Daniel and I had a blast running through Sea World at the Vanessa Welch Reindeer Run! This 3-mile course included entertainment, snow, and lots and lots of running reindeer! It was magical to see everyone's costumes! From antlers, to jingle bells, and tu-tu's, they had it all!

Getting ready to run! Isn't he a cute reindeer?

Track Shack always does a great job facilitating events, so I was thrilled to know that they were apart of this one! What makes them great: quick and easy packet pick-up, awesome t-shirts, water stops, volunteers, and medical help if needed the day of the race, and of course the fun athletes they attract! If you're looking to get into 5K's, I would definitely start with an event by them.

You can check out their upcoming events at their website here.

Having fun at the course!

Sea World was so beautiful decorated for the holidays! It was hard to stay focused on the course with everything going on. But I did get a chance to enjoy the snow!

What a fun, festive experience! I would definitely do this race again! Check out my GPS route below.. I love using the MapMyRun app to view my route!

I can't wait to get into some more 5K's and races in 2014! They are just such a fun way to get your exercise in. I also love that once you sign up for a race, that gives you a date and goal to shoot for. Very motivational!

Can't wait to join you at the next one! :)

Friday, December 6, 2013

First Friday Book Review - The Resolution

Title and Author: The Resolution for Women, by Priscilla Shirer

Release Date: July 2011

Page Length: 288 pages

How I got the Book: Public library

Find Online: Goodreads | Amazon | ChristianBook.com

Description: "The Resolution for Women inspires women with intentional, spirit-filled living from three unique angles. Section one, entitled, "This Is Who I Am," helps a woman define herself as "authentically me, purposefully feminine, surprisingly satisfied, and faithfully His." Section two, "This Is What I Have," invites her to value "my best, my blessing, my honor, and my heart." And Section three, "This Is What Matters To Me," focuses on joyfully honoring God as a wife, mother, and family member while resolving to live with the grace that leaves a godly legacy. The Resolution for Women is designed to inspire a revolution."

My Thoughts

I had seen the cover of this book dozens of times over the past two years, but never had the desire to pick it up. I am terrible in that I buy books based on interesting covers. While this cover was pretty, it didn't tell me much about the content. Even the book description left me wondering, what on earth is this about?!

I finally got the courage to pick up this book and start reading. Boy, was I glad I did! Strap on your seat belts, because this book has some deep, life changing content. It's not like anything I've ever read before. What The Resolution aims to do is challenge women (any one of us, in any life stage) to live their life with eyes wide open, and to its full potential. Priscilla challenges us to be better than our best for God.

Relevant Material

What I love most about this book is that the topics are very relevant to our culture today- our struggles, our tendencies, our failings. This is not your mother's or grandmother's devotional book. I could really see myself and my girlfriends in this book through her teachings and examples. Here's what I'm talking about...

"You can always tell people who operate form a position of perceived lack and deficiency. They're stingy with their time. They're selfish with their resources. They're tightfisted with their energy. They're reluctant to sow of themselves into the lives of others because they're afraid they don't have enough to do it with and still have enough time leftover for themselves."

This was the first quote I wrote down in my notes. WOW! I see so much of this in young women today. Why do we feel like we don't have enough to pour out to others? Why are we holding onto our time, resources, and energy?

"Someone, somewhere, needs you- in all of your uniqueness- to step up to the plate of your calling." 

Here's another mind-blowing quote from Priscilla. It's so empowering to know that someone, somewhere, can be and will be blessed by me. Me- exactly the way I am, the way God made me.

"Sooner or later, for all of us, the inevitable pressures of life will reveal the truth of what's inside. Sure, external strength alone can be enough to handle some of the simpler, less demanding situations, but when the stress builds to a certain weight and downward force...the person lacking depth of integrity will snap."

I love that this is a call to examine our character. Priscilla really builds up her messages for deep self-examination (like this passage here) in later chapters. As you keep reading, her questions, thoughts, and messages go deeper and deeper.

A Little Long

Don't get me wrong, Priscilla does a fantastic job with this book. However, I feel like Part 3 of the book, where it talks about marriage, children, leaving a legacy, could have been cut-out. There are so many other Christian books that discuss those topics. I read the section on marriage, but I couldn't relate because I've already been married. I'm not a newlywed anymore. I also started the section on children (never finished), but I couldn't relate because I don't have children. Cutting out Part 3 would have shortened the book about 100 pages.


Fantastic book for women! Definitely a great Christmas present! It will be one you go back to over and over through the years. Because of it's length, give yourself some time to read and mediate on the messages. Take time to answer the discussion questions. Be ready for life change! 

Monday, December 2, 2013

First Friday Book Reviews - Coming Soon!

Over the next year, I'll be reading and sharing my thoughts on several popular Christian books. I'll post a book review the first Friday of each month, to help inspire and encourage you to check it out.

Let me just say, I am SO EXCITED to be embarking on this challenge! I feel like this has been several years in the making... I read a lot of Christian books when I first became a believer in 2009, and through 2010/early 2011. Books on salvation, marriage, dating/courting, biblical character, etc.

Then, I hit a wall. I wasn't interested in the Christian resources out there, and I wasn't sure in the direction I wanted to grow. I started some books, but never finished. Finally, I allowed myself to stop forcing it.

It's been two years now, and I'm super excited about several Christian books that are popular today! I don't know all the books I'll be reading over the next twelve-ish months, but I have a good list to start with. If you have any recommendations, let me know!

My first review comes out this Friday! Stay tuned!