About Me

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South Africa
My husband, Brett and I live in beautiful South Africa and have been blessed with the most precious family. We have 2 very beautiful and brave daughters, Tianna (15) and Angelee (12) and a very precious little boy called Zac who touched our hearts forever in his 1 day here on earth. We never would have imagined that we would have to live this side of Heaven without our sweet boy who was born with half a heart, but every day Jesus carries us through and is teaching us more than ever how to live, laugh and love fully. 3 years ago our faithful Great Restorer graciously blessed us once again with another son ... our beloved Gabriel ... a ray of sunshine in all our lives! "Love in Action" is our journey as a family to love the way Jesus is teaching us to love and live.

Blog Archive

26 January 2011

When your Day is Speeding by ...

Anybody else feeling like your week has been a little something like this?
Shew! This week feels like it is flying by as quickly as a speed train. Last I blinked it was Monday morning and I had a host of things that I planned on slipping into all my free time. Free time??? What novel thinking! Everywhere I look there is something more to get done, meetings to attend, responsibilities to fulfill and a busy home to run. This is pretty much "life as usual" for most of us these days. I find myself eating faster (if not skipping meals), talking quicker, heck ... even typing quicker than ever (who knew I had such speed skills - hee hee). Hmmm ... a little balance is in order.  
If you are feeling anything like me today, here are some promises to encourage your heart as they have me today.
"But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint."
Isaiah 40:31
God knows all about our responsibilities and all the"running" that is required of us in a day. His promise to us is that if we will find moments to wait on Him ... even in our "running", we will not grow weary because He will renew our strength. He will refresh us even in the midst of our busyness. Those moments of waiting are moments of becoming mindful of His Presence with us and His promises to us ... taking a few moments to look into His Word  or even just taking a moment to worship Him. The freedom that we have in God is that you can wait on Him even in a crowded room; driving in your car; pretty much wherever you are. 
I love how God only asks of us what He Himself is also willing to do. Take a look at your second promise ...
"Therefore the Lord will wait,
that He may be gracious to you;
And therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy on you.
For the Lord is a God of justice;
Blessed are all those who wait for Him."
Isaiah 30:18
Take to heart today that God is waiting for the opportunity to show you His grace and mercy and to bless you in your day today as you make the choice to wait on Him.
Here's to the rest of the week exploding with His every blessing ... even in the busyness!
All my love xxx
Janine


Time with Mom

Over this last weekend we were so blessed to have my mom come and stay with us for 5 days. She has been living in Virginia for the last 5 years and came home for the holidays to spend some time with her mommy and all of us. My handsomeness snapped this pic just before I drove her back to the airport. My girls adore their "Lala". She always makes them laugh and has wonderful ways of imparting truths to them without them seeing it as another lecture from mom ;0)
Since she left on Monday afternoon the house has been too quiet, but my heart is filled with beautiful memories of countless cups of tea and coffee shared together; long marathon scrabble matches (my sis is the only other person who plays the game with me); heart felt conversations about life; watching romantic comedies and laughing until the tears rolled down our cheeks and  our tummies ached with laughter ... oh how I miss her already! 
This blog is a place for me to highlight what is closest to my heart and family has to be something that matters most to me. While I live far away from all of my side of the family, I have seen how God repeatedly gives us amazing times to be with one another. Oh how He treasures family! I never want to take the people in my life for granted. Our times together are rich and precious. That is a gift that I treasure deeply.
All my love xxx
Janine

22 January 2011

The Gift of Grace

Lately I have been having some of my paradigms shifted (always a good thing ;0) It can only lead to greater freedom!). I was 5 years old when I surrendered my heart and life to Jesus Christ. I remember it clearly, and as small as I was it became a defining moment from then onwards. When I grew a little older and temptations became more obvious, hardships made me question or hurts made me want to run ... I could never deny the very real presence of a loving God that had always carried me through. In my experience, God is not a God who wants to hide from us. But somewhere along the line, like so many, I picked up the mentality that to please Him I had to live a very perfect life. Always make the "right" choices. So much of my searching became about what He wanted to "use me to do". Obviously it is impossible for us to live perfectly in our humanity. Surely that's why we needed a Saviour in the first place =0) We all have our melt downs. We stumble or fall. We make unwise decisions that hurt others and ourselves. In those moments, I felt so ashamed. I wanted to hide from Him and so I would try even harder to do the right thing to please Him once again and earn the right to be used by Him to do something meaningful with my life. Had I heard of grace - oh yes, but I clearly I understood it in a limited capacity.
About 5 years ago, while I was walking on the beach praying about some big decisions at the time, the phrase "love in action" captured my heart. It was on that walk that the heart of God began to uncover to me the purpose for the gospel being shared. Jesus repeatedly shared that He had come to free us from the law and the pain and destruction that sin brings into our lives. He fulfilled every inch of the requirements of the law on our behalf so that we would not have to strive so hard for His love and acceptance. He wanted to make a way for us to receive the freedom that we all need. The truth is that His obedience and sacrifice was perfect and complete for us. He made that covenant with the Father on our behalf. His covenant promises and blessings that you read about in the Bible are guaranteed through His obedience for us! Oh my word. That is how strong grace is! It actually has nothing to do with my actions at all! It's all about His action on my behalf. All that He requires from us is to accept it as the gift that it is. 
This post is about exploring the wonder of His grace. The only way that we can come to the place of salvation is by grace. Not our wonderful efforts of a life lived perfectly! 
“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.” Ephesians 8-9
 If you, like me have grown up going to church, hearing sermons all your life yet still have not felt the freedom of His total acceptance, today is the day to open your gift of grace. He is willing to trade all your brokenness, all your pain, past and present mistakes and in return give you love. Peace. Acceptance. Healing. Purpose. Meaning. It's not about what you can do ... it's all about what you choose to receive. May your heart receive the freedom that love brings today by accepting His truth. His grace is for you! There are no exceptions to who qualifies. We all qualify! May His words bathe your heart and mind today  and everytime you look in the mirror and see your reflection, see what God sees ... one who is so worthy of grace and all His liberating love!
All my love xxx
Janine 

21 January 2011

Check out who is following your blog!

Hey lovely ladies. This is just a quick warning for you to regularly check your followers pictures on your blog page. I happened to look to the side of my blog page to witness a REVOLTING porn picture! I hadn't checked in a while and just happened to see that I had a rather unsavory follower as spam on my page. Thought I would let you know in case the same happens to you.

Much love xxx
Janine

14 January 2011

A very big day for our very little guy

After what seems like a very long wait, our sweet little Cosmo finally arrived today!
We are all absolutely in love with our 13 week old pup. He has the sweetest nature. 
None of us could leave his side all afternoon until finally, all loved up, he collapsed asleep =0)
We are so thankful for our little blessing!
BIG love to you this happy Friday xxx
Janine

12 January 2011

A Blog Award and Shout Out

Today has been full of wonderful gifts and surprises. I was totally surprised to be nominated for a Stylish blogger Award from Melissa at The Chronicls of a Rookie Mom. Thank you so much Melissa for this sweet surprise today! I encourage you to check out her blog. I love reading other mommy's journeys through parenthood. She has such an awesome heart!  
There are 4 duties to perform to accept this award:
1. Thank and link back to the person who awarded you this award
2. Share 7 things about yourself
3. Award 15 recently discovered great bloggers
4. Contact these bloggers and tell them about the award!

So here goes ... 7 things about myself:
1) Surprisingly I find it really hard to shop for myself ... it's always the kids first, but my one weakness ... SHOES!!! I can totally make a plan in the budget for the right pair of shoes ;0)
2) I don't know what I would do in life without spell check! Lord knows my posts would definitely be a lot more hilarious. 
3) One of my dreams has always been to be an author (once again - thank you to the creator of spell check). 
4) I LOVE baking! And eating what I bake! (Do you also steal the biggest cookie first or is it just me???)
5) I gave my heart to Jesus when I was 5 years old. I cannot remember a time when He has not made His love so real to me. This is the inspiration for the songs that I write. 
6) My hubby and I are off on a date night tonight!!!!! I went out and found the cutest dress on sale for R99 ($14). I can't wait to showcase it for him tonight =0)
7) We are getting our new puppy on Friday!!! We can hardly wait!!! He is 13 weeks and flying in from Durban. We can't wait to snuggle this little cutie. 

Now to pass the blessing on, I award the following blogs for the continual ways that they either inspire, touch my heart, make me laugh or cry every time I read them. If you have some time, go and check them out. 


Sending you much love today xxx
Janine



11 January 2011

So I walk outside ...

So I walk outside to deliver some tea and treats to my little princesses and here's what I see ...
My big boy keeping an eye on my colorfully and creatively dressed little princesses enjoying their late summer afternoon spread out on the lawn. 
I would love to be in their head-space for a day! I love the freedom, creativity and inhibition that they live with! It captures my heart each day!

Sunny afternoon hugs to you today xxx
Janine

10 January 2011

Holiday Snapshots

Yesterday we made the long drive home after a 3 week holiday with all our family and friends in Johannesburg. It was a full and busy time, but I have come home with some fabulous memories. Here's a peek at some of our holiday. Half the time was spent at my hubby's family farm in Rustenburg with all his side of the family and the other half was spent at my sisters house with all my family. 
Lots of swimming and running around in the sunshine at the farm.
Catching up with lots of extended family members from far and wide.
Learning new swimming strokes. Such a patient and fun daddy!
Playing with cuzzies for hours in the pool.
More special times with cuzzies ...
Getting cuddles from my main squeeze =0)
I even got some of my family out to the farm.
I got to spend special moments with my precious mom and sis. (They'll have my hide for this pic with no make-up on! hee hee ... this is what farm life does to you!!!). I also got to spend some more time with my Granny before she moves into her new home. (For those of you who asked me about her, she is holding on strong to life and has an amazing will to live. I am amazed at how she has survived since I first saw her in the beginning of December and the Doctor told us her time was short. When I kissed her goodbye she assured me that she still has lots of work to do for the Lord! I have learned so much from her. She is so strong.) 
I LOVED getting to know more about my littlest niece, Miss Makenzie May. Oh my word ... isn't she just the sweetest thing ever!!!!
Here's me with the rest of my beautiful nieces and firstborn princess. Man it was hot!!!
We then went back to my sisters home where we had many fabulous feasts (which my scale has seriously taken note of!!!)
Wonderful walks around my sisters garden. Note - she has horses in her garden!!! Sigh. So beautiful!
Here is a "redeeming pic" of her and I with make up on. hee hee
This last snapshot made my heart sing. Those who know me really well know how much I LOVE Hummingbirds. We don't get them in South Africa, but on the farm we spotted this Hummingbird moth! I'm sure my Jesus sent it right there for me to see to make my heart smile :0) Oh how I love Him and am so thankful for this very blessed time away with those I love dearly. 

All my love xxx
Janine

04 January 2011

A lovely day

I had such a delightful day today. As I am still on holiday at my sisters house we kicked off the day with some good exercise in her gigantic pool. There is nothing like feeling Summers warmth on your face as the fresh water wakes up your entire body! Makes you feel so alive. It also makes me so mindful of the blessing of a strong and healthy body that I can so easily take for granted in the rush of everyday life. 
We then got the house ready for lunch with some family. I just love it when lunch turns into afternoon tea and then before you know it, it is almost supper time! It was time well spent in great conversation and laughter which left me encouraged, inspired and enriched. 
This evening all the cousins and my little sister from my dad's lovely wife are having a sleep over. The giggles of 5 excited little girls makes me smile. Too precious for words =0) We guzzled down sushi and pizza's and ended it all off with Cinnabuns. Could this day get any better??? Yip ... it sure can. I am about to crawl into bed and snuggle up to the sweetest man that I call husband! Sigh. A beautiful day altogether. 

03 January 2011

Learning how to "Let Go"

Yesterday I wrote down a few of the words that I want to live by this year. The very first words that I wrote in my diary on the the 1st of January 2011 were "let go"
How often have you heard the phrase "let go and let God". I must admit that I have often thought that to sound so vague. How exactly do you "let God". One of the things that I love about God is that He is interested in answering our questions. To let go and let God is not just this whimsical act of "whatever will be will be". It is an active step of faith. It requires trust. Trust that when we lay down our control issues and actually allow God to lead us, we will actually find the peace and abundant life that He has promised to each of us each day.
This is an area that I certainly want to grow in! I find so many moments in each day where a choice lies before me. You know those moments where misunderstandings creep in ... or differences of opinions. Sometimes it's disappointment or simply just different ways of doing things. What I am learning though is that in that moment I have a choice to make. Either I can take offense, get angry, withdraw, react etc ... or I can choose to let it go. Why is it so hard to simply let it go??? Maybe because we get so accustomed to defending ourselves.  Or the need to be right. It all feels so real in the moment, but oh how miserable it makes us after we have reacted!
I really want to choose to "let go" and laugh this year ... more than ever before. Oh what joy and healing comes when we choose to laugh through life. It impacts everyone around us!
I close with one of my favourite verses that I learned as a little girl. "For the joy of the Lord is your strength". Nehemiah 8:10
All my love xxx
Janine

02 January 2011

Words for 2011

At the start of a new year these are the words that I want to live by ...

Let go ...
                                     Laugh ...
           Live fully...
                            Love Deeply ...
       Truth ... Sweetness ... Patience ... 
                          Tolerance ... Acceptance ... 
Surrendered Faith ...           Trust ... 
      Creativity ... Adventure ... New Songs ...
                   Courage ...
         Freedom ... Abundant Favour ...
May 2011 be a rich year for you in every way ... full of breathtaking moments, side splitting laughter, tender memories, dreams fulfilled and much much more. May we all choose wisely to live the kind of life that God has planned ahead for us ... one of abundant life!
All my love xxx
Janine