Monday, December 26, 2011

Advent Christmas Ornaments

I wanted to make some ornaments this year for my tree. And even though it is already after Christmas, I finally finished them.

I wanted to make something that correlated with Advent that I can use for years to come.  This is what I came up with:

Here's how I made them.

Items needed:
  • 5 clear ornaments (usually come in a pack of six at a craft store)
  • scissors
  • text template (view template here)
  • color printer
Step 1: Print out text template using a color printer. I printed them and inserted paper again to print the same text on the back.

Step 2: Cut the template into strips. *note the thinner the strips, the easier they will curl.

Step 3: Curl each strip like you would a ribbon. Don't curl them too tight. They fill out the ornament best if they are a little loose.

Step 4: Insert strips into the ornaments.

Ornaments finished!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

Designed by InkSpotts Stationary | Facebook
Photography by Daniel Stancil Photography | Facebook

Here are some more shots from my brother's photog session.

We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!

Ross, Ange and April

Saturday, November 26, 2011

My Certain Hope - Wall Art

A week or so ago, I shared the song "In Feast or Fallow" with you. One of the great lines in the song is, "My certain hope is in Jesus found." I absolutely love this lyric and wanted to make something to display it in my house. Then as I was browsing on pinterest, and a friend of my pinned a simple piece of art work that I would use as my inspiration.

I simply took some wood scraps from my Dad's shop (luckily he has a full shop where scraps and tools are easy to come by). Then cut them to size, sanded them and glued them together. After some stain and holes to hang it, I was almost finished. Finally, I stenciled the lyrics with paint. Project complete!!!

I could not wait to get my new art work home and hang it on my wall.

Well, here it is...

Hope you like it.

Friday, November 18, 2011

In Feast or Fallow

Right after the miscarriage, a good friend sent this song to Ross and I (Thanks Cameron). Needless to say, I fell in love with it.  The words are powerful. Every time I hear or sing this song it reminds me that God is in control and He is everything we need. Check it out:

In Feast Or Fallow
Words and Lyrics by Sandra McCracken

When the fields are dry, and the winter is long
Blessed are the meek, the hungry, the poor
When my soul is downcast, and my voice has no song
For mercy, for comfort, I wait on the Lord

In the harvest feast or the fallow ground,
My certain hope is in Jesus found
My lot, my cup, my portion sure
Whatever comes, we shall endure
Whatever comes, we shall endure

On a cross of wood, His blood was outpoured
He Rose from the ground, like a bird to the sky
Bringing peace to our violence, and crushing death’s door
Our Maker incarnate, our God who provides.

Emman- u- el
Come, oh come,     Emman- u- el

When the earth beneath me crumbles and quakes
Not a sparrow falls, nor a hair from my head
Without His hand to guide me, my shield and my strength
In joy or in sorrow, in life or in death

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Tragedy Strikes

Three months ago today, Ross and I experienced a tragedy that will always be a part of us. And I want to share our story with you.

Tragedy strikes all of us. Struggles and trials in life are definite. It is not an issue of if they will come but when. Tragedy is never convenient or timely.

Our story:
July 12th was a glorious day!  Ross and I had been hoping and praying for this day for almost 3 years...a positive pregnancy test! It brought tears...tears of joy! Then on August 3rd we lost our little precious one. Then more tears came...tears of grief. Miscarriage sucks!!!  The journey for us since then has been difficult. I would be lying if I said we have it all together. We have struggled with depression, anger, denial, envy, fear, defeat, loneliness and so much more. Our hearts simply broken...a gut-wrenching pain that I wish on no one.

In all of this, we still have hope! We know that scripture speaks truth and it says, "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." (Romans 8:28) 

Ross and I have been called...we are children of God and therefore we know that even though our hearts are broken, this brokenness is for good. This good is to the glory of God. I know that even though this time is hard that it is for the greater story of God working in our lives to sanctify us, making us more like His son, Christ Jesus. This in no way means that we don't ask why or that we understand it simply means that we know Christ is our goal. He will lead us through this valley even though days are dark and normalcy seems to be a foreign concept.

To our little one:
You were planted on earth to be born into heaven....never having to face the brokenness of this fallen world. One day we will worship the King for eternity together. I can't wait to hear your voice singing praises to our Lord, Jesus Christ. We love you and we miss you!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Peace of Christ

Recently, life has been tough.  Soon I will begin to share why. However, right now I really want to share some scripture that has encouraged me even though it is something so hard for me to grasp.

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. ~Colossians 3:15-17

Letting the PEACE of Christ rule in your heart...that is a difficult thing to allow. But be encouraged that no matter where you or I are, we are sought after by a God who loves us and He desires to be in close relationship with us. We are called to peace...even when things are tough and peace seems to be an oxymoron to everything we feel inside.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Grand-mama Fudge

There are specific things that you remember vividly from your childhood. The sound of mom using pots and pans in the morning; the smell of dad's workshop; and the taste of Grand-mama's fudge. Even now, these and more are things that take me back to those glorious days.

There is such comfort that we can feel when we experience these things as adults and there are times in our lives that we seek for such comfort. There are times when we need to take ourselves back to those moments of our childhood.

My grandmother's fudge was legendary! Some would rather refer to it as chocolate candy. Either way, it is sweet and delicious goodness!

The hard part is that making "Grand-mama Fudge" is an art. Chocolate can be a difficult beast to master. Luckily as a child, I would assist Grand-mama in the kitchen during the fudge making process. Since she has gone on to be with Christ, it has been my personal goal to master the art and to keep alive the tradition of this delicious recipe. To me, it brings me back to the comfort of my precious grandmother; the loving prayer warrior we loved so dearly.

So, more than 5 unsuitable batches later, I give you

Grand-mama Fudge!

Back to the comfort of my childhood...

Monday, July 4, 2011

New Obsession

I have a new obsession...


With the help and teaching of my great friends the Clipping Queens, I have now learned to effectively coupon. In a nutshell, it is similar to what they do on TLC's show 'Extreme Couponing' without the need for a separate storage unit or basement.

A bit of personal history...just after Ross and I got married, we moved to Atlanta. Ross was looking for a job but it took a few months for him to land a permanent position. So while we were living off of my small income, we didn't have much dinero with which to work. I began to coupon just buying a paper every week to help make ends meet. We definitely made a lot of sacrifices during this time but we reached our goal of not accruing any debt during this tough time. In short, I started using coupons to help save a few bucks here and there. I was unaware of the amazing savings that I was missing.  Yes, I was doing good by getting coupons but I was not using them to their full advantage.

As time went by and Ross settled into his job, we stopped "needing" to be as frugal.  It was kind of a relief to actually have the funds to buy the groceries and personal items that we needed. So I got lazy with my coupons and just stopped all together.

Last fall, my great friends Ali Kusky and Melanie Ford started discussing this effective couponing that Ali had been doing.  Melanie was immediately hooked.  Now they have combined forces to become the Clipping Queens!!  They provide workshops and private lessons to teach people how to effectively coupon and get the most for their buck. I was able to attend one of these workshops last month and it has completely changed the way I purchase groceries!

Today I went to Publix and here is my receipt to prove it. I paid $62.69 for $172.79 worth of groceries.  I saved a total of 64%!! 

So you may be wondering, how do I do it?  Well, I could tell you, but it would take me a long time in a blog post.  If you are interested in learning how to coupon effectively and save 50% and more on your grocery bill, please let me know or contact the Clipping Queens.  You can "like" their page at to get updates on upcoming workshops or to possibly request a workshop of your own.

So now I coupon to save money on the things that we use on a daily basis. It is being frugal, actually even more than I was before. The difference now is that I get to do it for fun and not necessarily out of necessity.  I like to tell people that it has become my hobby or part time job. It is exhilarating to come home and know that I saved 50% or more on my groceries and everyday items. My competitive nature is driving me to save more and more with every trip to the store. And I can't complain...we actually have a full pantry and we eat at home more often. Another advantage is that I am buying more products but spending less money!  My weekly budget for food can really purchase a lot! So now I am typically under budget and I have a box of items that I am building up to donate to charity!  It is a win-win!!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

20 lbs down!

I am glad to announce that I have officially lost 20 lbs since I started my "getting healthy" journey back at the end of January.  Just so you know, I have added a ticker at the bottom of my blog that will show my progress.

Here is what it looks like:

YEAH for 20 pounds!!!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Nemesis: Unhealthy Self

I have always been pretty active and have always loved playing sports. No matter what it is, just let me play and I will be a happy girl. Over the years, I have played everything from softball to basketball, from soccer to flag football, from ultimate frisbee to beach volleyball. I love to play!

However, these activities became less common and my nemesis made itself known. My nemesis: unhealthy self. It first reared it's little head during my last semester of college. My body became weak, the flu set in and turned to pneumonia. After a long time of recouping, I never really seemed to get back to normal. It was a slow increase but the pounds began to add up. Ten pounds turned to 25 which then turned to 55 pounds. That's right, 55 pounds over my comfortable weight. I began to physically see the results of my unhealthy self.

So, I joined a boot camp and in about 7 months, I lost those 55 pesky pounds! I wish this were the end of my journey...but it seems to only be the end of the prelude. My nemesis had not yet been conquered. For the boot camp, I lived by a strict regimen of exercise and very structured eating. At least the next stanza was one of great joy. Ross and I were married that fall. It was a most beautiful day and I was healthy (so I thought) and "lookin' good!" I was able to keep to my regimen and diet for a short time but my unhealthy self was still in there.

Time went by and my strict regimen and structure were not so tight laced anymore. As before, my nemesis started to rear its ugly head yet again. The sleeping dragon was waking...5 pounds turned to 10 to 26 to 38 to 49 and finally to 65. CRAP!!! It is just like I woke up one day and it was all back plus 10. That is how it seemed anyway. I have realized in the last months through wrestling with myself that exercise and upholding a diet will not solely make me healthy. Yes, those things in and of themselves are great and do lead success but I have failed in the past because my unhealthy self made those things loose importance and soon have no priority at all.

What must I do?

I must slay the nemesis....put my unhealthy self to death. It will only keep coming back if I don't take this beast out for good. My journey to conquer this nemesis in my life is not just a goal to lose the weight...I mean to be 65+ pounds lighter would be a nice by-product but it is not the main goal. I need to be changed. However, I need to be changed from the inside out so that the physical actions can be sustained. I have won the battle before but I am losing the war. This change that I speak is not something that comes from me or anything I can do. It is something that has to come from within me that is not me at all. It is the power of Christ and the grace of his redemptive love that can Help me...Change me...Heal me...

Slay ME!

In the end, my nemesis is not food or activity but ME. I long for the day when my desire for comfort and contentment does not come from food or my self-exalting urge to be active but comes from the giver of ALL...Christ Jesus.

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort,  who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.  1 Corinthians 1:2-4

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Break and Biscuits

Sorry for the break everyone. I could give you a whole gamut of excuses...but you probably really don't care about those. Numerous excuses to none, I decided that I just needed to write. I have a few posts that I have been working on but they are just not ready for publishing quite yet.

Well, Ross has been working lots and lots of overtime lately. At least 9 hour days Monday through Friday and 8 hours on Saturdays and an occasional "voluntary" half-day on Sundays. The overtime pay is great but having an exhausted husband is not so much fun. He does continue to get his rest which keeps him from getting sick and hopefully they will be able to cut back a bit soon. But it really is not all that bad. We are very grateful that he has a job!!

I have recently discovered that my ability to cook has gone down the drain somewhat. It is probably just because I just stopped cooking for a while. Well, I am currently making strides to begin cooking more and ultimately preparing more meals at home. One of my current hurdles...homemade biscuits.

With biscuits, I am on my third batch. At least this morning they were edible. The last couple of batches I would not feed the dog. It seems so easy...flour, crisco, and buttermilk. I grew up watching and helping both my grandmother and mom make them perfectly. Even making them by myself on occasion. The problem now you may ask...well, there is no recipe for their biscuits. It is basically all by sight and feel. So that has been my problem as I try to figure it out.  I have resourced some recipes online but haven't found the right combination just yet. I am getting closer with every batch! Progress is all I really care about at this point. However, I am sure that Ross would really like some good biscuits at some point. But even he has been a good sport about my recent failed attempts.

I will continue to write and make progress in my biscuit making. One day I hope to master them both!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Sheet Metal and Paperwork

You may ask: What exactly do those Floyd's do? Well, I am about to tell you...

Ross currently works at Kliklok-Woodman. You can view their website here: His company produces packaging machinery. In layman's terms, that simply means that they make the machines that companies purchase to package their products. These machines are purchased for use on assembly lines and put the products into their packaging; potato chips into bags, pizzas into boxes, etc. Ross works in the sheet metal shop of the plant and starts work at 6 a.m.
Currently, I work at a non-profit missions organization called Mission to the World (MTW). This organization is the international missions sending agency for the Presbyterian Church of America (PCA). I work in the two-week department which sends teams to work with foreign missionaries for 1-3 weeks. Most of our teams go for one week but a few go for longer. My responsibilities include the administrative/paperwork side of things. In short, I make sure that the teams receive and complete all of their necessary paperwork and financial requirements. I assist the regions of Mexico, Central and South America, and Sub-Sahara Africa.  Our organization website is (I do not start work at 6 a.m.!)
So that's what we do...exciting? Well of course! We may not have the most glamorous of jobs but we are where we are because the Lord has placed us here. 

Colossians 3:23-24 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Here and Now: Meet Riverside

I just realized that the second blog post is much more difficult than the first. There are so many directions that I can go and numerous stories that I want to share. But which one first? So I decided that I my first segment of posts would show where we are right now. It is usually so easy for us to tell of the past or even of the dreams we have for the future. Sometimes realizing where we are in the here and now can be a bit more challenging. I do look forward to telling of the past and our dreams for the future but explaining where we are now seems crucial for setting a point of reference.

So first and foremost, where are we geographically...Meet Riverside.

We currently reside in a pleasant little community on the upper west side of Atlanta called Riverside. We are ITP (inside the Perimeter) off of Bolton Road between South Atlanta Rd and South Cobb. For the OTP (outside of the Perimeter) peeps that is the Vinings area ITP. 

Riverside is smaller community that I feel has a lot of heart. One of the first things that we noticed when we moved here in May 2010 is that Riverside embraces community. The residents here truly care about the community where they live. It is diverse. A good mix of blue collar and white collar. Houses built in the 50's or earlier and homes that are a few years old. Even the age ranges are diverse. There are individuals who have been here for a long time but I would say that the majority of community is comprised of middle aged singles or families. We meet many people who are in the mid 30s. There are not many children running around our neighborhood but there will be in a few years. Many of the families have newborn or young children. So I hope that gives you a snap shot of Riverside. It is a vibrant area that I believe will continue to grow and change in the years to come.

In all, Ross and I are confident that God has brought us to this area for a purpose of making His name known among this diverse group of people. It brings numerous challenges but we are confident that Christ is at work here and has been long before we arrived.

Proverbs 16:3 "Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and he will establish your plans."

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Beginning in the Middle

Well, today I decided to create a new blog. I have been considering it for a long time now and decided to take the plunge. I am still not sure what it will look like, but I think it is important for me to share life with my close family and friends.

First of all, the title of my blog is Milestones and Missions. In a nut shell, Ross and I know that the Lord has called us to serve abroad in the advancement of His kingdom for the sake of His name. We are in the process of meeting some milestones that will allow us to reach our specific long-term missions goal. However, I firmly believe that missions is where we are! As Jim Elliott stated, "Where ever you are, be all there." This simple phrase has changed my view of missions all together. It is challenging and exciting to think that the God of the universe is sovereign and has us right where we are, not out of coincidence but for the purpose of making His name known. So "missions" is all around is where we are.

Secondly, the title of this post is Beginning in the Middle. This is not the first step or the beginning of our journey. We have felt the call to serve as foreign missionaries for many years now. Both Ross and I felt God leading us in this direction even before our wedding day over 3 1/2 years ago. So I don't really feel like this is the "beginning" even though it is the beginning of this blog.

So join me in our discovery of the path that God has planned for us. It has and will continue to be an interesting ever changing journey. I hope that I will be able to communicate through my grammatically incorrect words the amazing things that God is doing in us and prayerfully through us.

Join me...