— 1 —

It’s funny, for the longest time I refused to get on the Pinterest bandwagon, always saying, “It looks boring… all that homemaker stuff like recipes or gardening tips.” Well, I was wrong. (See, I can admit when I’m wrong!) It’s far more than just a hub for bored homemakers. I learned recently that Pinterest is a fantastic tool for bloggers, for getting traffic to your website, for networking and meeting new people. Plus, it’s fun and very addicting! I need to be intentional about limiting my time there, but I am happy that I finally joined Pinterest.

If you’re there, follow me, and if you leave a comment here letting me know, I’ll follow you too. I have 2 Pinterest pages, one just for Ashes to Beauty, and one that’s my personal page. Here they are:

Ashes to Beauty Blog
Lily Marie

— 2 —

I had a wonderful and fun trip to the Bay Area, to visit my sister and for a (late) celebration of all the July birthdays in my family. My sister and her family have a beautiful property up in the hills, with fantastic views and lots of room for the kids to run around and play.

7 Quick Takes Friday

The kids playing at my sister’s place in Northern Cali.

7 Quick Takes Friday

My cousin’s awesome wife Jill, me, and great friend of 25+ years, Marie.

I feel VERY blessed to have such a great family and wonderful friends!

— 3 —

Even though I have a great family, I also get frustrated and sad sometimes because many of my relatives are either not Christians or not believers at all.

During the big birthday bash, I had one conversation that went downhill, and left me feeling a bit discouraged. I was sitting outside on the deck with some family and friends, and something I said hit a nerve with my uncle. We were all talking about a sad situation, and without getting into the details of the conversation, I said something about God and His power to save and turn someone’s life completely around who has hit rock bottom. He raised his voice at me, clearly angered, and told me I was wrong. He said God was not needed, medication is needed for some people. I told him that I wasn’t disagreeing about medication. It’s true that some people need medication. But I went on to say that when someone has hit rock bottom, and they are completely lost, that person needs God. (Everyone needs God, but I was speaking specifically about a person in that situation.) He was still angry about my belief, but we didn’t continue with that discussion.

Long story short, I love my family but it can be difficult at times, when there are very few people around me who have the same views. My sister is also a non-denominational, born-again Christian, and there are a few other believers in my family (albeit with some different views) so I don’t feel completely alone. It’s just that, as I said, it can be discouraging to be around people who hate my views. I’m sure some of you can relate, right?

— 4 —

I just realized, this is supposed to be 7 *quick* takes, and here I am, being rambly and long-winded. I will try to make the next few takes short!

— 5 —

Like I mentioned last week, I’m taking a Facebook hiatus. And it’s great! I highly recommend taking a break from Facebook if a) it sucks up too much of your time, b) it brings you down or c) you want to learn and be up to date on real things going on in the world. Twitter is a much better source for keeping up with headlines and what people are talking about. Facebook is good (I guess) if you only want to find out what your friends did last weekend.

As I said earlier, now I’m using Pinterest and occasionally, twitter.

— 6 —

I’m continuing to research this whole world of intentional blogging, and I’m learning so much. I have lots of plans for this site, and challenging myself to be consistent and prolific has been fun! I’m excited about all that is ahead, and I look to forward to sharing that with all of you who read my blog!

— 7 —

I am still praying about God’s will, and what His plan is, in terms of my work and where I’ll be based. I would really appreciate your prayers, and thank you to all of you who are supportive of me, you are very appreciated!

God bless, you all, and I hope you have a beautiful weekend!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!