Monday, September 30, 2013


You see me
You know me
You love me through and through

What beautiful song lyrics to comfort on the first night in a very new place. I will admit, it is incredibly hard to be here. At my aunt's house I felt more at home, as is expected. You feel safe in a place where you know others. Having that safeness stripped leaves you with such a raw and exposed feeling. I am comforted immensely by the similar feelings around me and the expectation of great miracles in the lives around me and my own. It helps to know that love can span oceans. It's nice to think about the sweet reunions later. And it's certainly awesome to think about the many friends I will make. I am so glad that God sees my sorrow and catches the tears that fall. I totally understand why God is able to move so well here. Separated from family and friends, you really fall back on God. You rely on Him to catch and hold you. When I was sad, I found mind reeling with who I could turn to. Laura is in another building, my roommates don't know me, so I was left with God. It's funny how we always turn to other humans. And even funnier how they can't comfort us even a tiny bit like God can. Yet, we still tend to look towards other earthly companions first. But God is the ultimate comforter. And He forever will be.

Wholly Dependent

So I'm on the bus to Cape, and what amazing people I have met already. A guy named Jack asked me a question a little bit ago. He said, "What would a superb year at Cape look like to you?" Now, what a thought-provoking question. I mean I know God intends to work in my life in crazy ways, but what do I think that will look like? I will be honest and say that I haven't purposefully made that picture in my mind. I think it's mostly because I accept the reality that I will walk away from Capernwray at the end of these nine months, changed. And I want that. I want an end result that is as close as possible to God's perfect image of and plan for me. I hope and pray that I will become a God fearing servant of my Lord. He knows I have never been wholly devoted, and that is something I deeply regret and wish I had made it a point to change. But this choice to go to Capernwray is my first step to becoming wholly devoted. I'm very excited for a year focused on Him and our relationship.

That one question made me think and realize so much about what I had been thinking and expecting. I guess I wasn't really expecting specifics and I'm very glad about that. I expect a lot of God's work in my life, though. I'm really glad that I'm putting that on Him because I know He will always follow through. Even if it's not in the exact way I expected. I'm wholly depending on His plan. And just like runners have to take that first step to get where they want to go, I've made my first step in being wholly devoted. And I think that step is being wholly dependent.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Hello England!

Well hello there England! Nice to see you too! It has been quite awhile since we were last united.

I am quite glad to say that I have finally arrived in England. It has been a long time coming and it feels good to finally be here. Laura and I are spending today (Tuesday) through Saturday with my aunt. On Saturday we leave from Victoria Coach Station in London to head up on a bus with a bunch of other Capernwray students to finally see our home for the next nine months. Crazy! Only 4 more days until I'm actually there. It's going to be so weird to finally be there after so much waiting. But for now I'm just going to enjoy my time at my aunt's. I think tomorrow we'll go into London and sort of see the sights. Since this is Laura's first time across the pond, she wants to see everything and I am excited to give the highlights a second go around.

Last night we flew through half of the night to get here and got off the plane at 1 am Wisconsin time. That sure was interesting. Since we were pretty jet lagged, my aunt knew not to plan much. We got to her house around 8:15 am London time, so we got settled and had some coffee and chatted until 3 pm. Then we went to afternoon tea at Pennyhill Park Hotel. It was really fun and we sat and chatted and drank tea and ate scones, finger sandwiches, and little sweets. (Or as the brits call them, cakes.)
Our sandwiches and cakes.

The real adventures begin tomorrow, though, so make sure to come back soon and read more! Subscribe via the box on the side bar so you don't miss a thing.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Just Be.


I feel as though that was a much more suspenseful countdown for me since I had to type it...

Well, I really should've just stopped at 10 because that's how many days I have left in Wisconsin. Then I will be flying 8 hours over an ocean to live in a whole other country for 9 months of my life. Crazy right? I mean, there are definitely people out there that would classify an action like that as certifiably nuts. 

What with all the packing and shopping and all the other prep work I've had to get done, I've been crazy busy. Wait a second, I finished all that like 2 weeks ago. That's right! Here's a tip for all you study abroad goers, if you aren't working right up until leaving or you don't have a lot of other obligations prior to departure, leave your packing and shopping and such until 2 or 3 weeks before. Otherwise you will end up like me. Bored. 

It's not awful being around home a lot. In fact, as I sit and think about it in my multitudes of free time, I'm glad it has worked out like this. It allows me to enjoy my home life and create some little memories with my family. Whether it be hanging out in the garage with my dad working on projects, making runs to home depot together, running errands with my mom, dancing with my little sister, or just sitting around doing nothing, I am truly able to relish in my family's love for me and mine for them. I suppose I have been very reflective lately. It's sad to think I won't be able to hang out in the garage with my dad much longer or run errands with my mom. I will miss acting silly with Elise and being the big sister I love being. It makes life just a little bittersweet. But all in all, I wouldn't change a thing. I actually wait excitedly for my dad and Elise to get home, do idle tasks with my mom happily, and respond to texts from my sister, Mikaela, with lots of enthusiasm. For some people this time would just be too sad, but being the optimist that I am, I cherish this most thoroughly. When a daughter is truly excited about going on errands with a mother that is still technically working, that is a beautiful thing. 

So, if you are anything like me, maybe skip my tip from above and get your to-do list done. Then just be. Happily.

DIY Bunting/Photo Line

Alright my little Do-It-Yourselfers, here's a new one. Bunting. If you are unfamiliar with bunting, it is commonly known today as strings of colorful triangles of fabric (or paper). They are then hung up as decoration for parties or just because. I think it is a very adorable decoration that goes with most any decor. It can be used to spice up a plain wall, or as a fun decoration in a bedroom. And if you use this DIY guide, it can be a quick and easy project that will last for a long time.

*Photo courtesy of Google Images*

What you will need is:

  1. Colored paper (I had a pad of 6" squares of scrapbooking paper that I bought from Target for $6 and used. It came with some 50+ sheets. I had lots left over.)
  2. Twine/Ribbon/String to string your bunting onto
    • You will need 1 foot of string for every 2 triangles of bunting if you make bunting that is 6 inches across the top. (i.e. I have 17 triangles that measure 6" across the top, and used 9 feet of string)
  3. Scissors
  4. Ruler
  5. Hole punch
  6. *optional* photos
  7. *optional* clothes pins
Step one: So, first you need to decide how big you want your bunting to be. I had 6 inch squares so I made them that length along the top so as to minimize excess cutting. If you have rectangular paper, though, and you do not wish to make them into squares, you will just end up with bunting that is slightly longer.

Step two: Alright, once you have your paper, you can grab your first sheet and find the center point on the bottom edge. I opted for ease, so I just matched up the bottom corners and made a small crease.

Step three: Then, you line your ruler up with center point at the bottom and one of the top corners. Draw a line. (Note: If you don't want a line on the side of the paper that will show, flip the paper over when drawing lines.) Repeat with the opposite top corner.

Step four: Next, grab your scissors and cut out your triangle. Repeat until you have your desired amount of triangles.

Step five: After all your triangles have been cut out, you will need your hole punch. Punch two holes. Both about an inch inside each top corner. 

Step six: Now, use your twine/ribbon/etc. to string all the triangles together.

Step seven and eight: Hang bunting. *Optional* use your photos and clothespins to clip photos in between triangles (you could also substitute paper clips).

And your bunting should look something like this!
As you can see, I did put photos on my strand, but it was just as cute without.

I'm a little bunting crazy so I embellished my bunting with bunting. :)

My beautiful sisters and I.

If you really love my twine and want to use the same, I purchased hemp from Ben Franklin. It can also be found at most any store that carries craft/jewelry supplies.

If you enjoyed this post or something didn't make sense, please leave a comment below.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Contact Me


About Me

Hello! Welcome to my blog, A Traveler's Dream.

I started this blog because I am studying abroad in England this year (2013-14) at a school called Capernwray Bible School. It is an international school that hosts about 200 students every year. The school is part of Torchbearers International and was one of the founding schools. It is located in northern England in the county of Lancashire. School starts on 28 September and runs until 13 June if you decide to stay the full year, which I have. I decided to pursue Capernwray as a one year option prior to university because I am a Christian and have a love for my Lord and Savior and desire to know more about Him. If you would like to know more about Capernwray, you can visit their webpage here

But, Capernwray is not the only thing in my life. I hail from Delafield, Wisconsin, a very nice suburb of Milwaukee. I live with my mother, Joyce, my father, Mike, my two sisters, Mikaela and Elise, and my crazy spastic golden doodle, Bella. I love them all with my whole heart. I am the middle child, Mikaela is two years older than me, and Elise is four years younger. I am also blessed to live within ten miles of three of my aunts and my grandparents. These families hold 7 of my 9 cousins on my mom's side. I love each and every one of them as if they were my own siblings and often see them as if they were. My remaining two maternal cousins currently reside in London with my aunt and uncle. They have lived there for the past four years and have enjoyed their time there immensely. They are scheduled to return to the states within a year or so. But not before I come to school just a mere three hours north of them!

Other than spending time with my family at our frequent parties and get-togethers, I enjoy hanging out with my friends, reading, blogging, and art. And this is where the DIY portion of my blog started. For those of you who are not familiar with what a DIY is, it is a Do It Yourself project. They can vary from plant-related to home decor, and from repurposing to creating from scratch. If you are interested, you can visit the DIY projects portion of my blog. But, my love for art did not start with DIY projects. All through grade school I loved art. My mom signed me up for tons of drawing classes and painting classes and the like. I enjoyed them, but I always loved playing with clay and doing more three-dimensional projects more. I entered high school at Kettle Moraine HS, and had to pick my classes. I was excited to find out that they had decided to split their freshman art class into 2-D (drawing/paint/etc) and 3-D (wire/plaster/clay/etc). I promptly signed up for the 3-D class and shocked my mom. I told her that I really didn't like drawing and much preferred to sculpt. Today, we still laugh about all the 2D classes she stuck me in. 

Apart from art, I also love volleyball. My sister, Mikaela, is a junior in college and plays for a division two school in Minnesota called Winona State Univerity. My little sister, Elise, is a freshman in high school this year at Lake Country Lutheran HS. She plays for Junior Varsity and occasionally Varsity which is quite impressive. They are both much better than I ever was, but I do enjoy volleyball recreationally. I also am part of a triathlon team called Race for Patch. The team was founded about a year and a half ago as a memorial to my friend, Patrick. I am not such a fan of running, and, though I love the water, I am not a particularly good swimmer. But I do sincerely enjoy biking. I am excited to get back into it when I get home from England. 

So, now that I have told you a bit about myself, please explore my blog and enjoy.

DIY Altoid Tin Prayer Boxes

Alright, my lovely little bloggers. I have been wanting to start a DIY section on this blog for awhile now, so I figure what better time than the present. Right? So here goes...

I was in a store called Francesca's a few weeks ago with some lovely ladies by the name of Laura and Maddie. Then are both heading off to England with me (in 10 days I might add!!!). Anyways, we were shopping for some stuff to bring to school and I came across these cute little boxes!
Now isn't that adorable?!

This was what it said on the inside
"When your head starts to worry,
and your mind just can't rest,
put your prayers down on paper,
and let God do the rest."

I mean aren't these just the sweetest little things?

So me, the avid do-it-yourself girl that I am, decided I could make these easy peasy! And it really was. Here's how:

1) I bought some Altoids. I bought a pack of four because it is cheaper than buying individual packs. I believe it cost me $4 dollars max for these.

2) I pulled out some sheets of scrapbooking paper that I had on hand and traced the top of the box once, and the bottom twice. I used three different patterns of paper for each tracing I did. (Note: trace the box on the back of the paper so you don't have lines on the side you want to show.) 

3) I cut out the paper. Now, cut the paper for the top of the box and the bottom of the box normally, but the second tracing you did of the bottom is for the inside of the lid. This piece I cut slightly inside the line so that it would fit without any extra.

4) I sanded all the places I was going to glue paper to (so the top, bottom, and inside lid of the Altoid tin.) and then wiped them with a dry cloth to remove any dusty residue. 

5) I used a glue stick (NOT a glue bottle. That will make your paper soggy and wrinkle when it dries) and glued down the paper in the three designated spots. (I put glue on both the tin and the paper to help it stick better.)

6) Next I hopped on my trusty computer and typed out Prayer Box and the poem from above, and printed it on colored paper. White works fine, too, but I personally enjoy any pop of color I can get. Make sure to print in a font that isn't too large so that it won't fit on your tin, but also not so small that it is hard to read. I used 11 for the poem, and 24 for "Prayer box."

7) I cut them out what I had printed and glued the "prayer box" on the top, and the poem on the inside cover.

8) Lastly, I used some clear gloss interior/exterior varnish to seal all my hard work and insure nothing would get dirty or ripped. I used the brand Dreamcoat from Ben Franklin's (a small bottle costs around $3), but it could also be purchased at any other craft store or possibly Walmart. When using the varnish, apply one coat and then let it dry for 10-15 minutes and apply a second coat, if desired. Once both coats are dry, remember to give the bottom and inside of the lid a coat as well.

Then I just got some little pads of paper and placed them inside the box and I was all set! This is how they turned out.

I added the bunting to this one. It made it 10 times cuter. Just 3 little triangles of paper glued down. Looks awesome!

I love the print of the lace on this paper. I think it is absolutely adorable.

And of course you have to have one that is all bunting. I mean, how can you not?

This is the inside.

And a close up. I didn't take pictures of the bottoms, but they are just a piece of scrapbook paper cut and glued down. Pretty simple. I just put paper there to cover up the Altoid nutritional info.

I hope this DIY was enjoyable and easy to follow. You can let me know if anything was unclear or didn't work by leaving a comment below. Thanks!