Friday, May 25, 2012

Friday Favorites - Family

This is a lengthy posting but how could I not share with you all the great things that have gone on this week.  I hope you enjoy some of my week-long family favorites as I join Rachel and others for Friday Favorites.
friday favorite things | finding joy
 Last week hubby joined our son and the Penn High School Kingsmen in Salt Lake City, Utah for the National Rugby Championship.
 Penn was one of eight (8) H.S. clubs from the U.S. invited to attend this prestigious event, so it was so exciting for hubby to be able to go with his boys.
Notice hubby was proud to show off his LSU gear while in this foreign land.
The Kingsmen didn't win this year, but they did come in 2nd.  So National Runners-up is a great honor and one no other Penn H.S. team has brought home before.  So way to go Penn Kingsmen and especially grandson, Jackson.  We could not be more proud!

While we're on the subject of Rugby, Daughter-in-Love made an exceptionally nice treat for these big guys.  She baked over 32 dozen brownies and delivered them to the team this afternoon after practice.  Is there any wonder they love to come to the Day house?

We fixed Po-Boys for a few hungry boys the other night with brownies for desert.  Do you see happy faces there anywhere?

 If you have been reading my blogs at all, you know this part of the Day family is extremely involved in athletics.  So, while the guys played Rugby, the girls made a 4 hour trip south for the weekend for the President's Soccer Championship.  I have no idea which President or of what, and neither did anyone else it seemed.

Regardless, we spent Saturday and Sunday morning honoring someone of whom we have no clue, on the soccer field with a lot of other parents and grandparents.

Our girls won all but the last one and evidently the President wasn't satisfied with just one weekend tournament, it is to be continued later in June.  Go figure!

 This beautiful, feminine, perfect little lady off the field, is one of the most aggressive and fearless players on the field.  She is a total contradiction!  She is so much fun to watch and is a strong defensive presence.
Now, another side of this granddaughter #4 is she is a musician.

 Tonight, we attended her Middle School Orchestra Concert.  They really did a nice concert and have a great sound.  Now try to picture this fierce soccer player making beautiful music on the cello.
Proud Mom & Dad
 Proud Bibby & Da
Granddaughter #1, Chandler made a 4.0 in her second semester of college.  We are so proud of her and for this accomplishment.  WAY TO GO!
  Our Granddaughter #2 celebrated her Sweet Sixteenth birthday this week.
On her birthday, she not only got her driver's license but got to drive her very own vehicle to school for the first time.  Congratulations SWEET Cassidy.  
Now, for the littlest grand.  Granddaughter #6 graduated from Pre-K this week.  Wow, my babies are all growing up.
And these are the parents of these three achieving, beautiful girls.
We will be having an opportunity to worship together this weekend plus playing some more Soccer and Rugby on Saturday and on Memorial Day.  I hope your weekend is an enjoyable one for you for your family.

 "Praise God from Whom all blessings flow,
Praise Him all creature here below.
Praise Him above ye heavenly hosts,
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Sticks and Stones May Break My Bones

As you know, I am visiting family in Indiana for several weeks, and as a result, I don't have or want to take the time required to create a new blog posting several times a week.  Thankfully, there are others who do take the time to share their heart with us.  One of these is Rachel at Finding Joy.

She so beautifully expressed what so many of us girls have experienced.  As a pre-teen, I was called "Bean Pole" by who I thought to be the cutest boy in the whole school.  I was tall and skinny with no boobs and misshapen teeth - quite ugly in my estimation.  I sure didn't measure up to the likes of Marilyn Monroe, Jane Russell, Olivia DeHavland, and other shapely idols of my day.  Have you been there?  What made a difference in your life?

I hope you find Rachel's post as inspiring as I did, and thank you Rachel for sharing your heart with us.

sticks and stones may break my bones

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

sticks and stones may break my bones
but words will never hurt me....

She was just a girl. Little, in fifth grade, with uncontrolled frizzy hair and a freckly face. But, despite that, oh so awkward stage, she felt good that day. In fact, she felt amazing and full of confidence. She had on these cool pants - floral pants, very 80s pants, with a bright bold pattern splashed about everywhere. And she had on her white sweatshirt - cute with the 3/4 length sleeves and the trendy emblem on the front. In her mind? Perfection.

She got permission to look at the nailpolish in Target while her mom and dad looked at the shampoo in the next aisle. She looked - at the reds, blues and the pinks - feeling as if nothing could stop her right then. To her, it was the perfect growing up type of afternoon. And just then, three boys, teenagers probably, came around the corner, saw her, the anonymous girl, and decided to yell something at her.
Hey Ugly.

She looked up, the once confident little eleven year old in her favorite outfit, and saw them. Laughing. At her. They ran off and left her standing there in the midst of pointless nailpolish. Who cared about luscious pink and cherry reds now. Now, she hated her clothes. She hated those pants with the purple flowers splotched about. She hated her hair. She now thought she was ugly.

And she lived with that. For years and years and years.

Hey Ugly.

She grew. Got married. Had children. Yet, still in the background of her mind were those two little words. Hey Ugly. She let them grow and grow and grow. Then it developed into more and more more lies about herself that developed from one little lie yelled at her in the midst of an early years Target.

You're not good enough.
No one likes you.
You're dumb.
You can't do it.
You'll never do anything.

All from Hey Ugly.

Until, one day, that little girl, who was now an adult learned the truth of Hey Ugly. She learned that she was not ugly, but rather a daughter of the King. She learned that those kids, those boys, probably never thought again of the words that they yelled at that little girl in Target with her fabulously cute, but never worn again, floral pants. Or how those words could define a life. Until the girl, now an adult, decided to no longer live with those words defining her life. She instead began to live knowing that she was beautiful - In the Lord.

She learned about the power of words. She learned how callously and carelessly they are thrown around - little phrases here and there and when these words are left unchecked they grow into lies distorting the truth of self. She learned that as a mother that she needs to absolutely guard the words that she tells her children. She learned that she is not an emotion. She is not angry, sad, mad, scared, fearful and all of that. She is much more than emotion.

And she learned to forgive and let go of the hurt from those boys that decided in their world to be funny and yell at a little girl Hey Ugly.

She wasn't ugly. She just believed them.

But, not anymore.

She learned how those are lies of a culture that are destined to hold people, to hold women, to hold moms back. The lies don't define a life. The lies don't define worth. They don't define value. Or potential. They don't define beauty. They don't define capability. Instead she learned that truth defines.

And now, she's sitting here, behind a laptop writing to you.

She's telling you that you are not ugly, worthless, pointless, never going to measure up, a failure, don't matter, and all of that lie filled chatter that can run through our minds. Rather, you are beautiful. You are worthy. You are full of potential. You, right now, in your home with all that you are doing and have to do, with those old lies that no longer need to run through your head, you are absolutely beautiful.

Do not ever forget that.

Do not ever listen to the Hey Ugly cries of this world.

You are more than that.

You are a beautiful daughter of the King.

She's telling you, she's imploring of you, to listen to that finding joy truth instead.

this post is  a small portion of the keynote that I gave at the 2:1 Conference 
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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Habits of Kate Middleton

Today, I thought I would get back to a bit of fashion blogging by sharing with you an interesting newsletter I subscribe to,, by Diana Pemberton-Sikes.

Is there any doubt that Kate Middleton is the new Fashion Icon?  And surely we can learn some "Habits" from her; however, for God's Special Lady, only He can truly transform your life.  I trust that as you read this interesting article, you will pray asking God to do His work in your life as well.  After all, you are a daughter of the King, and the world is watching you too.

Read what Diana says we can learn from this new Duchess.

7 Habits You Should Steal From Kate Middleton That Will Transform Your Life

When Prince William announced his engagement to Kate Middleton in November, 2010, royal watchers the world over were delighted that her 8 year stint as “Waity Katie” had finally come to an end. But what they had no way of predicting at the time was just how influential she would become – or how quickly she would transform the global economy with a phenomenon known as “The Kate Effect.”

Here’s how Kate Middleton has pumped £2 Billion (and counting) into the global economy, with the help of Walt Disney, an occasional stylist, and a clever plan hatched by her mother decades ago – and how you can steal 7 of her habits to enjoy similar success yourself.

Let’s start with the basics:

“The Kate Effect” or “The Duchess Effect” is the term used when Kate Middleton wears a ready-to-wear item for a public appearance that immediately sells out that day. Clothes, shoes, hats, jewelry – as soon as the retailer is identified and reported through blogs, texts, or tweets, a global army of “Repli-Kates” goes online and starts buying. Often, items are snapped up in a matter of hours; a recent jacket sold out in 30 minutes. Even her one-of-a-kind Alexander McQueen wedding gown was being knocked off and sold within 24 hours.

So what is it about Kate Middleton that has spawned this fashion frenzy? Why are women printing off her royal engagement diary, then waiting with their iPhones in one hand, credit card in the other, waiting to see and buy what she wears?

Are they utterly insane? Have no life? Still live with their mothers? What?


They’re following a predictable psychological pattern known as “projection.” They’re “projecting” themselves into Kate Middleton’s life by wearing what she wears. Kind of like people who “go Goth,” dress like Harley Davidson bikers, or dye their hair the same color as Katy Perry’s. Everyone has a dream, and by dressing like people we like or admire, we try to capture some of what they have. The advertising industry was built on it.

Remember those old Gatorade commercials from the early 90′s that told you to “Be Like Mike” – as in be like Michael Jordan? It was at the peak of his career with the Chicago Bulls, and every little kid – and plenty of adults – wanted to “be like Mike.”

Turns out, MILLIONS of women around the world want to “Be like Kate.”

Prince Charming and Cinderella and Prince William and Kate 
Because Kate Middleton is living the Disney princess life we all learned about as kids: she had humble beginnings, met a handsome prince, had a fairy tale wedding, became famous, and now attends glamorous events in beautiful, amazing clothes. Later, she’ll get to live in a palace and wear a crown.

But she’s doing it in such a friendly, fashionable, down-to-earth way that we can’t help but like her. She sweeps and cleans like Snow White and Cinderella. She’s smart and adventurous like Belle and Jasmine. She’s athletic and strong like Pocahontas and Mulan.

We feel like we know this girl, like we grew up with her, like we could laugh and swap stories over a cup of tea or a bottle of wine. She’s pretty, funny, and makes Prince William laugh, and we get the sense that unlike Charles and Diana’s marriage, this one is based on love and respect instead of image and duty.

In short, we CARE about Kate Middleton, and because she always dresses so nicely, we want to see what she wears to the next ball, and the next one, and the next – and, God Bless her, she “gets” it and doesn’t disappoint. She doesn’t even need a Fairy Godmother to whip up a couture creation (although a few have done so on occasion); no, she’ll buy stuff right off the rack from High Street stores just like a “normal” person and look smashing regardless of the label or price point.

THAT is the true “Kate Effect,” in my opinion: her ability to move up and down the social hierarchy with as much ease as she shops discount or couture, and make it look SO easy, we can’t help but be impressed. She’ll have a pint at the pub, hang with cowboys in Calgary, rub elbows in Hollywood, and have tea with the Queen. Then she’ll go home, do a grocery run, cook dinner for her husband, and walk the dog.

She’s totally normal – yet ridiculously elite – all at the same time.

Glamour Girl
Glamor Girl
 Average Girl
 Average Girl

Which is why so many watch her every move. They want to “Be like Kate.”

And if you look beyond the labels and the glamour and steal some of her habits, you might enjoy similar success.

Say what?!
Pippa, Kate, and Carole Middleton 
Let’s be clear: Kate Middleton did NOT get where she is today by luck or happenstance. She makes it look easy, but the reality is that she’s a clever, ambitious woman who was raised by a clever, ambitious woman, and if you study the Middleton family’s success, you’ll see that it IS possible to go from average to extraordinary – even within the confines of the rigid British social system.

You just have to know which rules to follow – and which to break – in order to get what you want.

Here are seven of Kate Middleton’s success secrets that have turned her into a global phenomenon — and could possibly do the same for you. She:

1. Works Hard

Kate was born in a mid-sized town to middle class parents working as flight attendants. When Kate and her siblings were little, Carole Middleton started a party supply mail order company called Party Pieces from the kitchen table. Homebased startups require A LOT of effort, a family effort, so Kate helped out by keeping house, watching her siblings, filling orders, packing boxes, etc. She is no stranger to long hours and hard work, and still prefers the DIY method for most things these days, including grocery shopping and keeping house.

Habit: Hard work is appreciated everywhere in the world; laziness is not.

2. Has a Plan
Williams and Kate 
While William and Kate have not shared their 2, 5, or 10 year plans with the world, it’s clear that they have them and are working through their lists. Whereas Charles once complained that, “He should have had two wives, one to work either side of the crowd while he directed things from the middle,” William and Kate work the crowds together, have fun together, and clearly have a distinct direction in which they want to take the monarchy. When William’s away attending to military duties, Kate sees to their public engagements alone; she doesn’t wander and drift and get into trouble like Sarah Ferguson did when Andrew was away. No, Kate holds down the fort and keeps things in order, according to their plans.

Habit: Failing to plan means you’re planning to fail. Figure out where you want to go, and then determine the necessary steps to get there.

3. Sticks to a Budget

Kate still practices a lot of the budget-conscious ways she learned as a girl, much to the shock and surprise of “the establishment.” While many royal brides have spent recklessly on clothes and jewels – both Wallis Simpson and Princess Diana come to mind – Kate does not. She may have worn an £80,000 bespoke gown for her wedding, but she typically keeps her purchases in the £50-£500 range, and wears the same clothes several times. She’s even been known to swap clothes with her mother, and doesn’t really care whether it’s reported in the press. She still looks great regardless.

Habit: Wealth comes from saving, not spending. Live below your means, regardless of your income.

4. Is Likeable

One of the most remarked-upon things at the Royal Wedding was the diversity of guests at the church. Royals, rock stars, and celebrities sat alongside William and Kate’s middle-class friends, school mates, and neighbors. Once upon a time, that would have been unheard of in royal circles. For William and Kate, it’s par for the course. They get along with everyone all along the social strata, which is why they’re as popular as they are.

Habit: Be likeable. If you don’t feel comfortable talking to certain types of people, read a copy of How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie, do what it says, and watch your income grow.

5. Has Connections

Influential families have always sent their kids to expensive schools. Which is why one of the first things Carole Middleton did with her business income was to send her children to the best schools she could afford – because the connections made there last a lifetime, particularly among the British elite.
Alnwick Castle, Ancestral Home of the Duke of Norththumberland 
William and Kate met at college, as did Pippa Middleton and her current beau, George Percy, the heir to the Duke of Norththumberland. The Norththumberland title is one of the oldest in England, and the family castle – Alnwick – is the one used for Hogwart’s in the Harry Potter films. If Pippa should marry George, the middle-class Middleton sisters would have come from nowhere to marry two of the most powerful men in England. Edith Wharton would swoon.

Habit: Expand your social circle. If your current friends and associates don’t move in the circles in which you’d like to move, it might be time for a change. Change jobs, change neighborhoods, or change your children’s schools. It could do wonders for your income and future.

6. Dresses for Success
Kate wearing the Canadian colors on Canada Day 
Kate Middleton has been both praised and criticized for her fashion style. While the fashion forward think she dresses too conservatively, the “average” woman loves how she looks…which is why they’re running right out to buy what she wears. Her style appeals to a wide range of people, whereas an extreme look would be off-putting. What’s more, Kate’s mastered the secrets of other style icons, like dressing in her best shapes and colors, while also paying homage to people and places. Wearing the colors of the Canadian flag, Kate paired her engagement photo cream dress with a red maple leaf hat and the Queen’s diamond maple leaf brooch for Canada Day during their Canadian tour last summer.  It’s a perfect example of her fashion savvy.

Habit: Dress for success is still alive and well and those who embrace it and dress appropriately make more than those who don’t. Period. If you want to make more, dress better.

7. Understands She’s a Role Model
Role Model 
With so many people “projecting” themselves into her life, Kate knows she’s a role model to millions of people and takes the role very seriously. While the ever-present paparazzi can be a trial to any celebrity – particularly one with such a world-wide following – she still manages to make it look easy by smiling and being friendly. No foul language, no bad behavior, no nasty Tweets or Facebook posts, no early morning coffee runs in sweats and no makeup. In fact, the only “racy” picture you’ll ever find of Kate was the time she wore a sheer dress at a college fashion show before she and William started dating. Compare that to every other celebrity you’ve seen, or to any reality show on television that requires constant bleeping for all the bad language.

Habit: THINK before you do ANYTHING. We’re not perfect, we all make mistakes, we all do stupid stuff we wish we could take back later. But if you think through the potential impact of your words, emails, tweets, posts, behavior, etc. – BEFORE you do them, you’ll have a lot less to regret or explain later. If you want a following, BE SOMEONE TO FOLLOW.

Now I know some of you might be saying, “Well, who couldn’t do all that stuff if you had Kate’s friends and income?”

Remember, she didn’t always have them. The Middleton money is new. They got it by following the 7 habits listed above, and it’s paid them handsomely.

Just as it will for you.

Start with what you have, set goals on where you want go, and start working your plan.

Remember: you have what you have because of the decisions you’ve made. If you want a different outcome, make different decisions.

Start projecting yourself into a more successful life, and you may be surprised by just how quickly you can “be like Kate” and have a Kate-like effect of your own.

Diana Pemberton-SikesDiana Pemberton is an author and fashion blogger who’s been helping women online dress better since 2000. Ready to add some Kate Middleton style?  Enroll in Style Icon Secrets to learn what it takes to be a style icon.