Winter Reading

          The snow keeps piling up, and we shovel and shovel and shovel and it just keeps coming down. Some complain, some don't. I'd say I'm somewhere in between. Some days I don't like it. I just want it to go away and summer to come so I can sit on the beach and just listen to the waves. 

         Then, I realize, I like winter. I like the snow. I like the cold that turns cheeks and noses red. I like the icy fingers, the icy toes. I like it when it falls all sparkly onto the ground with the slightest little breath of noise. Like a whisper. I like sitting in a quiet room, blinds on the window open, reading. Occasionally looking up as the white, fluffy flakes build up into snow banks. 

       I was doing that earlier. And as I watched the snow and read my book, I wondered why. Why do I read? My brothers call me crazy for the amount of time I spend reading. Almost as if they think it's a waste of time. I thought about that earlier too. Maybe it's a time waster? Maybe I spend too much time reading when I have more productive things to do with my day? 

       Then I thought; am I insane?! Did I really just think that? I know why I read. Because books can take you magical places. Because whether you're reading a book about the history of apple picking, or a C.S. Lewis novel, or the Bible, you're always learning. Always growing. Always absorbing new knowledge of some sort. I like learning. I like getting wrapped up in a book. As crazy as this sounds, I like getting emotionally attached to book characters and crying when they go through hard times. Reading is apart of who I am. It's something I do. It's something I like to do. Especially in the winter.

     So winter can take it's time leaving, spring and summer are probably going to be busy, and I'm not done taking a few more uninterrupted book adventures yet.



Valentine's Day and All of it's Hype

               Valentine's Day is next week and I've been thinking a lot about it lately. Mainly about the hype about it. Like, why do people put so much stock in this one day?

            I decided to do some research. 

            Apparently, the day (February 14th) originated as a religious celebration for one (potentially more) Christian saints named Valentinus. That was interesting, but I was more interested in why it's such a commercialized holiday now.

            Wikipedia says; 

             "The day was first associated with romantic love in the circle of Geoffrey Chaucer in the High Middle Ages, when the tradition of courtly love flourished. In 18th-century England, it evolved into an occasion in which lovers expressed their love for each other by presenting flowers, offering confectionery, and sending greeting cards (known as "valentines"). Valentine's Day symbols that are used today include the heart-shaped outline, doves, and the figure of the winged Cupid. Since the 19th century, handwritten valentines have given way to mass-produced greeting cards."

              Interesting. So back in the 19th century, I suppose that lovers gave gifts on Valentine's Day, but it wasn't so... artificial. It was more genuine than it seems now. 

            The one thing I never understood though is, why do we only celebrate how much we love each other one day a year? I don't know about anyone else, but being fourteen and never having a boyfriend, I usually (at least most years) give family and friends Valentine's. Valentine's Day, to me, has always been a way to show people how much you love them, and to celebrate the fact that you do love them. So why do we only celebrate one day a year? Why do we only show our love one day a year? 

           This has just been on my mind lately. Why can't we show love the other 364 days of the year. Why just Valentine's Day? Honestly, Valentine's Day isn't even as special anymore. It's just a marketing ploy for card, chocolate, and flower businesses. Sure, it's nice to have a day to celebrate the one you love, but it just feels like we narrow showing love in extravagant ways to that one 24 hour period. It's like, when it hits midnight, it's all over. The hearts, cupid pictures, and doves come down, the flowers wilt. Is the love truly still there though? Is it?  

         I don't just mean the extravagant ways we show love. I mean, why does a husband have to buy a dozen roses for his wife only on Valentine's Day? Why not on a random week day?

         Love should be an every day affair. You should show the ones you love that you love them, every. Single. Day. Because if they don't know today, what happens if tomorrow never comes?

        So this year, let's not limit ourselves to showing our love for each other only on February 14th. How about January 1st and December 31st and every single day in between?

Kelsey :)



When you don't know what to say anymore

                                                Melting snow.
                                     Me. Because I haven't posted a picture of myself in awhile.

               There are so many times in my life that I have no idea what to say to people. Even just in regular conversations, but mostly in the harder ones. The ones dealing with real life problems. The ones dealing with things that are way above my fourteen-and-a-half year old head. Or at least should be.

             But I really think everyone has times like that. Where they don't know what to say. So instead of being calm and thinking through what to say, we all react in different ways. Some of us lash out, some of us just get quiet, some of us tend to argue and argue until it's not even worth it anymore. 

           I like what my Mom used to do though. She put all these sticky notes around the house that said, "S.U.A.P." It stands for shut up and pray. I find that it often works. When you run out of things to say, or don't know how to react to someone, just quiet down, and pray. Or even when you have problems and don't know what to do about them, don't say anything about them. Don't over-think things. Just shut up, and pray. It sounds kind of weird I suppose, but it really works. I've been shutting up and praying a lot lately. 

         I hardly ever have the right words to say to anyone. Then again, I'm only fourteen (nearly fifteen). I don't have all of the answers in this world. But God does. And I just have to trust that He'll either give me the words to say, or He'll say them himself. Somehow. Some way. 

Kelsey :)