Category Archives: Uncategorized

An ugly sweater winter christmas

happy

June in New Zealand usually means grey and dreary wet winter days… so we pulled out our ugliest sweaters, dusted off the turtle necks, went 100% tacky on the decorations and held an ugly sweater winter Christmas party at our new pad (the S.F.C HQ – Sunday Funday Club HQ).

Highlights included terrible presents & setting the sky alight with floating lanterns (see more here)

What a night of festivities & merriness!

We had a giant blow up snow globe that actually snowed!

midwinter

Posed like family:

familymatters

Made a head wreath:

chrissy

Made a human table:

table

Placed hands on shoulders:

cheesey

Got mildly wild!:

cheese

Made a human pyramid:

pyramid

Got our Prom on:

prom

Mastered an ‘awkward family photo’:

haha

Posed angelically:
angel

Placed hands on eachothers hips:

family1

And were glad my husband was wearing undies:

family

Christmas feels so much better in winter!!!

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We’ve moved!

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Hey Stud Muffins!!

Guess what! we have packed house and moved to a new farm! it is all kinds of wonderful… The best part? my Husband LOVES his new job 🙂

What I didn’t expect was that although we are a good 20 minutes closer to town, we are completely out of range for broadband so we’ve been forced offline for a solid 3 weeks (Gasp!, shock!, horror!) while we waited for satellite internet to be installed.

Drama mama! Sorry for the unexplained absence!!

So, here’s the skinny…

-I’ll be uploading videos to my beauty & lifestyle channel shortly (my laptop ALSO packed it in – I’m getting a newbie)

-I’ve got some secrets in the pipeline I’ll be sharing once I make some definite decisions… Eeeeeee!!!!

-I’m loving this new season I’m in, prepare yourselves for sharing ‘friendsies’ overload!!… I’m just so appreciative of the people in my life… I was once terribly shy, incredibly anxious, insecure & most definitely someone that purposefully only kept few close friends – as you can read here, there was a massive catalyst in my life… my eyes have been opened, I’m living in freedom! I’m living, not just existing!

So with that, I’ve missed your faces! I hope you’ve kept well, lived well and all that kind of goodness… and with that, I’ll see you soonie loonie!!

 

xx

 

‘Catching the bus’ – how I stopped ‘existing’ and finally began ‘living’

suitcase

It was the 1st of June 2012.
The hardest year I’ve ever had just ended on the farmers calendar.
My husband and I had been sharemilking business owners for a year… working every single day and steadily approaching burnout.
It was like nothing else we’d ever experienced.
It was difficult looking beyond the next day let alone being able to even look further down the track to see what we were actually working toward.

The most important things to us (Church, family, friends) had become luxury items.
The things that were of most importance to us, the things that made us ‘us’ in most ways were unintentionally put on the back burner – any spare time was needed for rest.

I was going through an identity crisis.
My spirit was withered.
My creative wells were dried up (explaining my giant blogging absence).
I’ve always known my creativity comes from God and I was so tired I was distant… distant from the creative source.
Life was miserable and we were forced to question ourselves in every way you could.

Why are we doing life like this?
Why do you believe what you believe?
When you come up with an answer.. why do you believe that answer?

Questioning is painful and at times ugly – but pushing through to find an answer is liberating.
I found myself asking why I even ‘needed’ to go to Church?
Why did I believe in Jesus?

The truth is, the root of my belief in God does not come from the influence of my Christian parents, nor by listening and believing someone else’s account or ‘interpretation’ of Him.
The heart of my belief in God – the thing I draw from, is I experienced Him for myself.
It was simple, I gave God a chance to reveal Himself to me and He didn’t fail to show up.
His presence overwhelmed me and filled me. The Bible says that those who seek, will find – and it is true.
I am a walking testimony to that.

Dan and I always knew we couldn’t do all the work ourselves – we needed to employ someone to take the load off.
We sacrificed the finances so we could be freed up, even if it meant individually taking time off.

July 2012.

I was finally able to go to Church without feeling like I needed to sleep all day again
One of my biggest loves and passions is worship through music. I don’t have to be involved in the making of it, just give me an opportunity to sit in it and I easily get lost in it.

I’m a believer that if you believe in something or if you are going to be involved in something – don’t do it in half measure. Be authentic to the true meaning of that ‘thing’.
So I found myself one morning, sitting in the back row at Church in the middle of the musical worship set.
I wanted to dance.
To physically express my worship to God.
To dance because he is good.
To dance because of his ultimate sacrifice in my honour.
The thing holding me back was the fear of what the person next to me would think.
I saw that my ‘worship’ wasn’t authentic to my own real definition of worship – true reverence and adoration of God with spirit, soul and body.

For the first time in my life, I saw I was stuck and had only ever been giving God a half measure.
I saw that I was fearful of what people would think of me. Bound.
It was like a light switched on and revealed a shadow internally – I would do everything to see myself ‘freed’ – to see the shadow dissipate with a brighter wattage.
I knew if I wanted this, I had to step out and do something, anything, at the next opportunity – I’d better ‘catch the bus’ while it was stationed or I might never do it. So I did all I knew I could physically do.

The next Sunday, with my heart threatening to bust out of my chest, I put one foot in front of the other, and walked the five rows from where I was sitting to the stage during the worship set. Our Youth Pastor was thrashing about, so I joined him.
Abandoning any thought about what others might think.

That moment was the beginning of the journey that has changed my life completely.
It came with a decision of wanting freedom, then reaching and grabbing for it.
The feeling of ‘stepping out’ in such a way was a taste of freedom.
It was like I realised I was living a life like being a prisoner ‘in the hole’ – and then being given the opportunity to become a part of the general population by being allowed yard walks.
I could feel the air for the first time in a long time, I could see the sun, but there were of course still brick walls and barbed wire fences still keeping me in.

With that taste of freedom, I started seeing God like my favourite dessert. Chocolate mousse.
When I eat chocolate mousse, I don’t want one teaspoon today, another teaspoon tomorrow.
I want to eat THE WHOLE THING… and I want it all the time.
I could go for some right now actually. (Not pregnant)
On that day, I didn’t just want a teaspoon full, I wanted to be on the outside of the prison.. in chocolate mousse heaven (like that old Cadbury ad, except everything was mousse, not dairy milk chocolate).

The very next Sunday, I had my first prophetic word (a word inspired by God) to give during the prophetic time – ME. Little Elizabeth from Whangarei. The girl sinner with the dirty face.

I still remember wanting to vomit – not wanting to even get in my car to make the trip to Church. I felt some sort of stirring that I didn’t understand as I was hammering and chiselling (putting makeup on), but I knew I wanted and needed to ‘catch the bus’ if there was going to be one stationed.

Catching the bus is another expression for taking a ‘window of opportunity’. If you don’t catch the bus, you’ll miss it. Another bus might come, but it could be late. There might even be detours. You’re not even guaranteed that the next bus will even come at all.

So I caught the bus. I decided to be obedient to what I felt was Gods voice. The way I saw it, even if I wasn’t sure of myself – I would ‘catch the bus’. I’d rather put myself out there and risk looking like a fool if it was a chance to show God my love. So that He would entrust me with more. So I could keep the rhythm of putting one foot infront of the other. So I would grow. So I could be free. So others could therefore enter the grace of walking in that freedom too.

Bringing me to November last year. I had an incredible hunger to go deeper.
I got to the point where I didn’t know what to do with myself. So I did what I could, I pictured myself in the throne room.
Jesus sitting on His throne, me on my knees before Him.
I had a large quantity of packing boxes infront of me, some tattered, some dirty, some new… in those boxes were everything that made me, me.
There were boxes filled with the ‘shameful’ things, another one with the ‘dirty’ things, another with the ‘best’ parts, ‘dreams’, ‘hopes’, ‘faithful’ things, a box labelled ‘family’, etc.
Everything that made me me, had it’s own box.

With every box, I pictured myself ever so vividly pushing it to Jesus’s feet.
With each box I pushed, his arms opened and scooped them up.
There were tears in his eyes like He’d been waiting throughout eternity for this moment.
Every last box I pushed and gave to Him – telling Him that every last part of me belonged to Him.
I was at the last box labelled “family”. I followed suit with the ones before and pushed it thinking that was it. I looked up and saw that He was waiting. I didn’t understand! Didn’t I just give you everything?

I looked around and saw tucked behind me was a box I was subconsciously protecting. It was a box that I then noticed my right hand was handcuffed to. It was the one labelled “Eva” – my daughter.
For the first time, I saw this for what it was.
I was holding this box back from Jesus. This part of me I wasn’t letting him have.
I didn’t want to give it because I was terrified. I held fears over this box. I didn’t want the circumstances that surrounded my life as a youngster to happen to her.

My heart ripped. I loved Jesus with all my heart, I loved my daughter with all my heart. I had to make a decision, keep doing things in my own strength, or handing them over completely? I sat and cried, and then I made my decision.
With much pain and fear, I pushed the “Eva” box to Jesus… my mothers heart weeping before Him as I said to Him, “Your will be done… I choose to trust You more with her, then I ever could with myself”. It was like a soundwave went through the room…every link in the chains that bound me at the wrist exploded as pieces were thrown about the floor. I was filled with an overwhelming sense of security. All fear in an instant was blown apart.

He scooped me up and He had me.
I was not mine anymore.

From there on out, whether or not people were willing to ‘catch the bus’ with me, I knew that He was in me. I was certain of His ownership over me. I was certain that where I was going was the right direction. I had true heart knowledge that I was His and that He was mine.

It’s 9 months on from that very first day I stepped out, and I’m still moving! – I can’t count how many times I’ve put my hand up in a prophetic time or have had a spontaneous or prophetic song or have in one way or another, ‘stepped out” (everytime I still feel the urge to vomit)… all because I see my journey as just that… a journey.
You progress, you put one foot infront of the other, you get scared at times, you’re uncertain at times, but you carry on.
You go up hard hills, you run down the easy sloping otherside, you keep the rhythm up through the plains.
You keep your fire stoked, especially in the dark. You throw fuel into the fire to keep it burning (in my case it’s the distractions in my life).
You feed healthily, you watch what is going in, you protect He who is within you. You keep going!!

So here is my prayer for you:
Regardless of your beliefs, I pray that you truely are able to question yourself. That you are brave enough to ask the tough questions and face the true answers. That you wouldn’t settle for doing life mediocrely. That you would be authentic. That today is the day you choose step out in uncomfortable and scary ways so that you grow, produce fruit and can share the fruit with those around you.
That you would surrender and realise you don’t have to carry the weight of the world on your shoulders.
That you can enter the grace of walking in freedom too.
That you would catch the bus and you would catch it on time.

 

 
Love always,

Liz

xx

Dear Miss Laurie – February 2013

 

Dear Eva aka. Miss Laurie,

 

Ten days ago you turned 3.

We woke you up, told you that you were no longer two and you practically said, “I think that’s pretty good. Three.” As if you had come to terms with it, had analyzed it and decided it was something you could live with. You accepted the idea of your age like it was the best interest rate your mortgage broker could get you.

Your locks are golden, your legs are long, you’ve obtained purple glasses and you lied to the checkout woman at Countdown by saying I farted, when I DIDN’T! that was an outright LIE Eva! The worst thing is EVERYONE believes three year olds, they’re as honest as the day is long. Except you in this moment, when you proved to me that you’re gonna make a great Lawyer one day.

Today is my birthday and within the first 10 minutes of waking you screamed “Herpy burrday Mummy” in 5 different ways, it was beautiful. I love how the veins on the side of your head throb and the earth shifts in orbit with such joyful exertion.

Right now you are yelling “NO DADDY!, MUMMYS HOLY!” – it doesn’t make sense, but it doesn’t have to. You’re a fighter babe, I can see you fighting for justice in that courtroom already. My early retirement ticket…

It delights my heart when I watch just how much you want to be like me, we have to do our hair and nails TOGETHER. But even more so, how much the idea of wearing a dress is like someone telling you they’re gonna shout you a 10 day all expenses paid trip to Disneyland. The joy in your eyes is like you have just ‘seen’ for the first time after being blind your whole life.

Everyone that knows you, knows you dance. Our biggest joy is encouraging you to be your “Lively” self. Sundays are so much more fun with you in our lives, Worship is a dance party to you. I’ll be lying if I say it doesn’t make me emotional watching you.
I can imagine revival coming from the babies… with little people like you dancing and over throwing environments and atmospheres with your simple joy and love – we won’t have to teach you to change your thinking… we just need to teach you from day one to live in fullness… to keep doing what you’re doing and knowing that what anyone else thinks of YOU (especially in the midst of your Worship) is none of YOUR business. To live everyday walking hand in hand with your Papa in heaven, however that looks. ‘However that looks’.

6 things I’ve so far learned in my 20’s:

  1. Money is important but not the end goal. Keep your hands open, one that gives and one that receives…Your Daddy and I are believers in the idea that giving isn’t ‘giving’ until you feel it… it’ll amaze you to see how much you are blessed when you bless others.
  2. Compare negative words or thoughts with your own truth. They won’t measure up, so don’t believe them, delete them from the memory bank.
  3. A flourishing garden of friends is better than a weed ridden bunch… keep your circle open because everyone needs friends… nurture the quality and rid the weeds.
  4. Sunscreen is underestimated. Slop that stuff on like it’s mayonnaise and you are the bread. Wrinkles are cool when you earn them with age, not with sun damage. As much as Melanoma sounds like a tropical fruit, it is something to beware of… just like poppy seeds on bagels.
  5. Embrace your body, work with what you’ve got… trust me, the sooner you accept that you and every other person are different in looks, shape, weight – the more time you’ll have to be happy and the more time you’ll have for the things that matter.
  6. The best ever investment you could make is the investment into your relationship with God. It will never give you a bad return. Think about it, the more time you spend with someone, the more you begin to learn about them. The more deposits you put into a good investment, the more it has benefits. The more you sow into something, the more you reap.
    This isn’t a ‘works’ thing, as in you look at it like ‘I need to do stuff to get to know God more’ – no… stay away from that train of thought.
    Going deeper in your relationship (with anyone), there is a natural overflow of doing things because of your love for them… I love your Daddy, it’s natural to tell people how much of an awesome guy he is, because I love him… because being with him blesses me…. the same with our heavenly Father. Sow in to your relationship, let that overflow happen, if people are uncomfortable with you stepping out in such ways, don’t be discouraged, just be glad you’re doing something and ‘catching that bus’. (That’s another blog post all together). Pray for the ones who stare. That they will find freedom and liberation too… even if it comes by watching you walk in it. You don’t need anyone elses permission to ‘step out’.

My little Miss Laurie, you’re so girly but so tough. This morning you were break dancing on your colouring book, lost footing and scored some mean carpet burn on the back of your thigh, you flinched, and then shrugged like it was no big deal, just a little flesh wound. And then you reminded us about that one time you crashed your helicopter in ‘Nam. You’re so cool, you’re like those cool guys that don’t look back at explosions. You are my favourite person. Your dad is also my favourite person. I checked the ‘New Zealand Constitution’ and the Bible and there isn’t a single word in there about it being illegal or immoral to have multiple favorites. But you are, you’re my favourite person.

I love how you wake me up in the morning and ask me to sing songs about Icecream and flowers. I love how you sing me songs about Milo drinks and dresses. How you blame your own farts on others. How you want to help me with everything. How you camp out in stealth mode, waiting for the very moment your dad or myself  walk over to sit on the couch, only to ambush us and launch your long Dutch/Maori body on to the very seat we were about to sit in like you we’re throwing yourself on to a grenade Bruno Mars style. How you say ‘Hi’ to EVERYONE. How you call every older woman with grey hair “Grandma”.  I cannot contain your spirit, not that I would want to. But watching you maneuver through life makes me think you are on to something….

You make me feel like I’m doing something right.

I love you forever Eva Laurie, you make me smile everyday.

 

xx

Happy 29th Birthday to Daddy from Eva

ALL ABOUT MY DADDY

By Eva, recorded before her 3rd birthday

My Daddy’s name is NEENIL

He is 2 FEET TALL

He weighs 3 KG

Today he turns 5

His hair colour is YELLOW & BROWN

His eyes are GREEN

His favourite TV shows are DIEGO & BUBBLE

He likes to go ON THE BIKE

His favourite food is MY TOAST & CAKE

His favourite drink is JUICE

For fun he likes to GO ON A HOT SLIDE & EAT MY MEEMITE TOAST

I love it when my daddy HOLDS MY HAND

My favourite thing about daddy is DANCING WITH HIM

How he wears: A singlet (in 6 ways)

The much anticipated sequel to “How I wear: A Cocktail dress (in 6 ways).

This is why we’re married….

He’ll do anything to make me laugh …

xx