So I’m a little behind, but did you know it’s September? It really feels like yesterday was Easter. And, in case you weren’t aware, tomorrow is Christmas. Anyone else feel that way? Sometimes life moves a little too quickly for my liking. Earlier this week, I was doing some organizing and rearranging in my office. I came across my prayer journal from last year. I took a quick peek. First, God is good. He is faithful. He answers prayers … and sometimes in ways we never would have even thought to dream about. He redeems all things.
Second, I was reminded of my word for 2018. Intentional. I started reflecting on my year so far. Have I been intentional? Yes and no. My life took a turn that I wasn’t expecting. But as I said, God is faithful. He knew. And I praise Him for that. It threw me a bit, and I had to really lean into Him to figure out what “intentional” looked like in this new season of life. Here’s what He told me. It looks like hospitality. Biblical hospitality. Huh, that was a new one for me. Side note, did you know that this blog was originally called “Faith for the Littles?” It’s been very interesting to see how God works and moves things. Sometimes with a door slammed shut. Sometimes with a slow, gradual whisper of direction.
So with all that said, I thought it would be fun to share some of the things we’re loving right now! These are things that I’ve found help me to stop and be intentional in enjoying this new season. They’re things that help me to be intentional in the time I spend with those around me. They’re things that help me be intentional in growing closer to Jesus.
I’ve got four categories for you, and three things in each category. September is all about apples to me… specifically, apples and cinnamon. I’ve got some fun apple ideas and recipes for you, along with books, products, and links to some recent favorite posts in the blogosphere. So here goes! Things we’re loving in September!
*This post contains affiliate links. By clicking and purchasing from a link, I receive a small commission, at no additional cost to you. It helps me run this blog. I appreciate each and every time you choose to use one of these links!
Apples, Apples, Everywhere
Apple Chips ~ I’ll be honest, I’ve never been a huge chip person. If I can dip them in queso or sausage dip, I’ll take it. Otherwise, I’d rather have a veggie. Apple chips, on the other hand, I’ll eat far more than my fair share. I came across this recipe and it’s on my list of things to make this weekend! *In related news, carrot and zucchini chips are also on my list for this fall.
Apple Gouda Grilled Cheese ~ Yes, please! I love a good grilled cheese. We have a cute little place here that sells “gourmet grilled cheese.” It’s simply delicious. This sandwich would be a fun way to make my own at home! I love apples when they’re still warm from cooking. Pair this with a yummy soup and you’ve got a perfect lunch for a chilly day!
This apple tablescape ~ I like my table to be pleasing to the eye, but I definitely do NOT want to spend hours or tons of money making it happen. We love to have people around our tables, but it’s not for the decorations. It’s for the people in the chairs. This table setting is so simple, yet so inviting! Loving the apple cider in the mason jars!
Products I Love
Santorini Board Game ~ Want a quick date night or are you having a friend over? This game is quick and only needs two players! It’s fun for adults, but is simple enough to be played by children. It has a few different modes of play to adapt the challenge level. Set out a meat and cheese tray, and you’ve got a themed night ready to go!
Flair Pens ~ This might seem like a silly thing to add, but I use these pens every single day! If you’ve seen my Instagram stories, you may have noticed that these are what I’m using for the #dwellingin1John writing plan. They come in different sets, some smaller and some bigger. For me, I know that I want *all* the colors, so I say grab the big one!
My Fearless Faith Planner ~ I know that so many people prefer their digital planning. Call me old-fashioned, but I prefer my paper and pencil (or my Flair Pen and washi tape) planners! This planner has the horizontal layout, which is so much easier for my eyes to read. Each month has a divider page that reminds me to refocus my eyes and my heart on Jesus. Such a great reminder as I begin a new month!
Books to Read
The Best Yes ~ I cannot say enough about this book by Lysa TerKeurst. It completely changed the way I view decision-making. For every decision we make, there are three answers: No, Yes, and the Best Yes. While there are many good things we can do, not all of them are God things. Are we saving our “yes” answers for the things that are a “yes” to God?
Redeeming Love ~ Written by Francine Rivers, this fiction novel will give you a new outlook on what Christ’s love looks like. Set in the Gold Dust era, it retells the story of Hosea. From a story standpoint, it’s a great intertwining of Biblical characters in a modern historical fiction. From a heart standpoint, it’s a beautiful reminder of what sacrificial, Agape love looks like in our lives.
Armor of God ~ I am a HUGE Priscilla Shirer fan. This particular study took my prayer life to a much deeper level. It changed the way I look at conflict in my relationships. It changed the way I approach trials, whether big or small. When we approach this world as a battlefield, with a very real (yet sometimes hidden and sneaky) enemy, it changes the way we see the people and situations around us. Those people are not our enemy. But we have a battle plan, with a Leader than cannot be defeated.
Links I Love
How to Choose a Bible ~ My friend, Laura-Jane Barber is one of the most amazing human beings I know. Our friendship story is one that could have only been written by God. In this post, she talks about how to pick the best Bible translation. With one simple question, she tells you exactly how to find the right translation for you! If you’re looking for your first Bible, or maybe you’re ready to try a new translation, hop over to this post!
Homemaking Foundations Podcast ~ I’m loving this podcast right now! Jamie Balmet blogs over at Young Wife’s Guide and she’s amazing. Specifically, check out episode #5! It’s all about Biblical hospitality… what it is, what it isn’t. I felt so encouraged and more equipped to serve those around me. So many times I think we equate hospitality with dinner parties, or having company come spend the weekend. Jamie talks about what Biblical hospitality is, and how it’s truly a ministry.
How to Host a Blanket-Making Party ~ Stay with me on this one. Have you heard of Project Linus? They are a fantastic organization that gives blankets to children in need. Sometimes it’s a financial need, but other times it’s an emotional need. Stop by this post to see how one mom encouraged her daughter to serve others by gathering with friends and making blankets. With winter right around the corner, this fall season would be a great chance to encourage your kiddos to host their own gathering!
Thanks for letting me share! I hope you find them as fun as I do! Let me know if you try anything. I’d love to know what you think! Also, stop by the Gather & Dwell Facebook Group and connect with us!