Novice Journal

A little this – a little that!

Would You Rather? (again?)

Hey all!

I’m glad you’ve all been enjoying the pics, as they’ve been coming in like CRAZY. As long as you keep liking them, I will keep posting them.

Quick week sum up – it’s been a wonderful week! When I started this blog, I gave myself the crazy goal of reaching 800 followers in June. Thanks to all of you, it’s happened! (This is the part where if I was really tech savvy, confetti would pour down from the top of the screen.) Again, thank you! It’s a pretty epic achievement that I couldn’t have done alone…(unless I made 800 different gravatars and just followed myself – which is just creepy.)

Song of the week: Big Time, by Peter Gabriel. (The song is stuck in my head at the moment.)

Today, we take a break from the pics, and play a game! Yes, I know, it’s been forever and a day since we’ve last played one. So this one’s going to be easy. You don’t have to come up with something oober creative, just click the button that calls out you – no there’s no sound installed in the buttons, sheesh. And once I get around to it, I’ll post up my answers too. Have fun playing! 🙂

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Week Sum-Up 5/19/12 + Guessit Revealed!

Let me start off by doing good on a promise…..

Remember this pic?

Remember trying to guess what it was? Well, I’ll tell you… it’s a filing cabinet….and it’s brown. Some of you might have been confused because I made the picture white, but I only did that so you’d have a real chance at guessing what the real color was. See the logic? (Next time I’ll be better at warning you.) So congrats to you, saymber, you hit it on the nail! Oh, and you too, corkedbottle! You two saw straight through my fiendish plan… And while I’d normally respond to all of your comments, I decided to refrain this week to keep the suspense up! Thanks to all who played, it was a fun one (at least for me) and if you’d like another, I’d be happy to post up a new one. The more people like/request a game, the more likely I am to put it up!

As for my week, it’s gone well. Thanks for the “squishy hugs” and the well wishes. I’m feeling much better than I was at the start. I must have had some sort of virus. Thanks to God, I didn’t have it for too long. I can once again speak, and spend a full five minutes without blowing my nose. 🙂

More poetry, pics and games coming soon!

Happy Sunday, by the way 🙂


Song of the week: I’m Only Sleeping by the Beatles (The lyrics completely describe this past week’s Monday-Wednesday!)


Week Sum-Up 5/13/12

Happy Mothers Day to all the wonderful moms out there! I know I am so lucky to be blessed with such an incredible, inspiring, and talented mom 🙂 She’s the absolute best, and I’m so glad that God chose me to be her daughter!

Three things I love about my mom:

1. She’s got a great sense of humor! She knows how to put everyone at ease with her clever wit and joyful spirit.

2. She is an amazing cook! I don’t think she’s ever served a bad meal. I love pretty much everything she makes.

3. She’s super loving. Whether its a big hug, an encouraging note, or spending time, my mom is great at cheering me up.

My week has pretty much been about planning mothers day, keeping a schedule, and checking things off my to-do list.

So tell me, what did you do for mothers day, and what are three things you love about your mom/mom figure?
Have a great week!

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Week Sum-Up 5/6/12

Well lookie here! I’ve finally come around to writing another week sum-up! Gosh, it feels like forever since I’ve written one.

Life’s been busy, with plenty of fun and blessings sprinkled in along the way. I’ve been learning how precious sleep is, and how horribly distorted life can become without it. I’ve been running around today on only 4 1/2 hours of sleep (I barely even slept the night before that), and I gotta tell ya, everything is a bit blurry! Although, I took a ten minute nap in the middle of the day, and realized why naps are soooooo amazing. Just those ten minutes were enough to get me back on my feet for the second half of the day.

I’ve been finding time for wordpress and my blog now, and it’s felt so great to start things back up again! I can’t wait to see what Novice Journal looks like a year from now. Hopefully by then I will have found out the secret to successful/continuous blogging. 🙂

The weather’s been pretty respectful of my schedule, and for this I am grateful. I’ve been taking photos outdoors, working on poetry, and thinking up some more post ideas. Huzzah!

As afore mentioned, I am oober tired and just about ready to fall off this chair at my desk. I think I’m going to call it a night early today. Hope you all had a great week!

Song of the week: This is the Stuff by Francesca Battistelli

See you all tomorrow!


PS – Be sure to check out yesterday’s post and join in!


Faith on the Way

Hey all!

Once again, it’s been a while! Ever found yourself chasing Time’s coattails, and just when you think you’ve gotten a hold on things, you come to realize that it was a hologram? :/ That’s how it’s felt when it comes to blogging. I’m working on a bunch of pieces though, and will work to post them up soon! I want to thank everyone who’s still following, even though you’ve received “bits-o-blog” for several weeks now. I can’t wait to fully hop back on the blogging train soon!

Blogs, peace and elbow grease,


For now, enjoy this poem I wrote 🙂

Faith on the Way:

A glimmer of hope pierces through the sky

Snaking its way to these tired eyes

The sounding of drums in the distance

My heart pounds as I listen

This could be the end of an ever restless night

My sword is worn and my thoughts are scattered

Beginning to think my bloodied tears have ceased to matter

A wail from the pit of my stomach

Long awaited days of peace are coming

Pain and regret’s hold of me is bound to shatter

Courage will soon ride in upon his steed

The captives cry in anguish

Fetters scrape, and Faith, she bleeds

Honor and thunderous glory

Saved for the last page of the story

One last battle’s left till we are free

The raging war between myself and me

sun behind clouds. Français : Le soleil derriè...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

God has gone ahead and cleared the way

My enemies strewn out under my feet in disarray

Not a soul was left to run

Thousands of soldiers, overcome

I won’t forget this feeling I have gained today

No matter the odds and victories in the war

I’ve still got to believe my enemy is no more

It’s hard to gain the faith

Even when triumph stares me in the face

I hide in wait, I see proof but am still unsure

Please give me the strength to overcome myself

I know the truth inside, but gain my faith from someone else

So clear to see that the combat has ended

Then why are my doubts coming on heavy handed?

Instead of leaping on clouds, I sit here and dwell

Still I know

Courage will soon ride in upon his steed

The captives cry in anguish

Fetters scrape, and Faith, she bleeds

Honor and thunderous glory

Saved for the last page of the story

One last battle’s left till we are free

The raging war between myself and me

None can make me believe

It’s a choice made solitarily

The struggle to let go and breathe

Starts to get a choke-hold on me

God has a power that stands

I willingly fall into His hands

Worship through following commands

And trusting He has a plan

Courage will soon ride in upon his steed

The captives cry in anguish

Fetters scrape, and Faith, she bleeds

Honor and thunderous glory

Saved for the last page of the story

One last battle’s left till we are free

The raging war between myself and me

A glimmer of hope pierces through the sky

I know the truth inside, but gain my faith from someone else

No matter the odds and the victories in war

I must remember who I’m fighting for

God has gone ahead

God has gone ahead and waits for me there


Dictionary Round 3 Results, and a few other things…

It’s been a while since I’ve updated! Sorry for the delay, everyone. You’ll see in my poetry post (whirlwind) what life’s been like as of late. But for today’s main post, I’ll crown some Dictionary Round 3 winners, sum up last week, and add the song of the week. Here we go…

Week Sum-Up 3/20/12

First, a glimpse at my life. I’ve been as busy as a bee! But it’s all good stuff, I assure you. between writing, babysitting, and working to stay in sync to my calendar things have been a blur. I know I’ve done a lot, it’s just hard to remember the specifics. BUT what I do know is that we’re finally in Spring! Hurrah! It’s lovely outside and I long to just take a stroll. Hopefully it will be sometime soon. Thanks to everyone who has been following and checking in. I appreciate the support! I’ll be adding some more quotes to the Quotes Page very soon, so stay tuned!

Song of the week: Put it in Perspective by Duffy

Happy first Day of Spring!


Dictionary Round 3 Results

These were some tough words to work with! But I did see a theme in some of the definitions. You guys really had me thinking! You’re all so creative!

Second and Third place winners get to choose one word each for the next round and I’ll add a link to their blogs. First place winner gets to choose one word as well, they get a link to their blog, and I’ll post up their definitions here! Let’s see here…

Third Place: qs1998

Second Place: norinep

First Place: carolisle – Congrats!! 🙂

Her definitions were:

Panjandrum: Chaos in a nightwear factory.
Pericombobulate: A chemical compound to make boobu’s all better.
Hamsterdam: qs1998 may have it right but I say: A place hang your smoked meat.

Thanks for participating! Make sure to send your definitions to me soon – either through the Contact Me page or the comments below- and enjoy the rest of your week!


Week Sum-Up 3/11/12

Good evening everyone! Wow, it sure has been quite a week, huh? It was super busy, and I’d have to say that loosing an hour was the last thing I needed. But there it went, sucked up into space, and it’ll be lost all the way until the fall comes again. How tragic.

This week I shared my first recipe, celebrated Women’s Day, cooked asparagus for the first time, passed a very important test, and took advantage of the warmer weather (by taking a long walk.) So many other things happened but I’m so tired right now that they’ve all escaped my memory. Ever had a week where you did so much, but then had no recollection of what exactly took place? Maybe that memory is lost with the vanished hour.

The weather is only supposed to improve this week! I’m so excited! My camera is all ready to go… if only I could find the charger… and my sunglasses are ready to quit collecting dust. Who’s ready for some more flower pics?! Food pics?! Random pics?! Well, whatever this week brings, I promise you it’ll be an adventure. Mainly because, tomorrow is the start of Dictionary Round 3! There are some tricky words coming up….

Song of the Week: Many the Miles by Sarah Bareilles

Have a splendid week!


(enjoy this pic from Wikipedia) 🙂

English: My Pics

Image via Wikipedia


Week Sum-Up 3/4/12

Good afternoon everyone! I hope you’re all doing well. I know I’ve been returning to this subject a lot but, geez… it sure has been a strange winter! First the bitter cold, and then this lukewarm spring breeze kicks in. One moment tundra, the next, wellll, not so much. And a thunderstorm rolled through a night or so ago. The thunder was so loud, it set off some car alarms!! Plus, the lightning was so bright, it woke me up several times. It may be time for, Madam Weather, herself to get a checkup. I’m thinking she’s going a little wako. Anyone else think this is crazy?

This week was great for me to reset and change things up a bit. I’ve had plenty of time to think through some of the changes I’d love to make (some, I have already made) to the blog. Imagine where it will be in a year of so! Feel free to browse the quotes and awards pages! I don’t have much else to report this week. BUT make sure to check me out on instagram, (my name on there is mjray926) annnnnd hold your breath for tomorrow’s contest winner!

Song of the week: Sometimes by Nicole C. Mullen (couldn’t find a music link, buuuut the lyrics still apply)

Blogs and kisses!



Week Sum-Up 2/26/12

Once again, it’s Sunday! Wow, to think we’re at the trail end of February! This winter has been surprisingly mild. So mild, in fact, that it’s easy to forget it’s not spring already! I’ve already seen some flowers start to peek their heads out of the soil. 🙂

Many thanks to all of you who have been following my blog, Novice Journal has been steadily growing almost every day! It’s exciting to think of what my blog might look like once its first year comes to a close. To anyone who’s interested, I’ve now got an Instagram. My username is the same as my gravatar, mjray926. I’d love to see you there! I’m totally new to the whole concept, so we’ll see how far it goes.

Be looking forward to the next Dictionary challenge this week! The post goes up Monday, and the challenge ends Sunday night. I hope you all had fun with the last one, the words that the winners have come up with will certainly get you thinking! Plus, I’ll post up a recipe of the yummy Mexican Lasagna, as promised. Trust me, it’s oober tasty, and I make it gluten free! (aka, guilt free.)

Song of the week: Slice by Five for Fighting

Pic from Wikipedia

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday!



Week Sum-Up 2/19/12

Only ten days away from finishing out the month! Can you believe it? It feels like this month just flew on by. This past week definitely vanished quickly, with more highs and lows than I care to count. But, whether time has gone by quickly or at a snail’s pace, we are this much closer to Spring, and I am this much closer to going on another photo expedition.

Thank you to everyone who has participated this far with the challenge! There have been some wonderful responses. I will reveal the winner and runners up tomorrow! It’s still not too late to enter, so get your responses in today!  🙂

Song of the week: One of Those Days by Joy Williams

Have a great week!



Genesis (Joy Williams album)

Click here to hear the song!