Stylish Blogger Award & More

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Most of you know that my duties as a first term designer for The Play Date Cafe will soon be beginning, and I am beyond thrilled!  It has been a joy getting to know the other girls, swapping trade secrets, and laughing up a storm, all through this beautiful place we call the World Wide Web.  Well, last week, Ruby McGuire gave each of us newbies the Stylish Blogger Award, which I am, now, proudly, displaying in my right side bar.  Thanks so much, Ruby!  What an honor!
By accepting this award, I must...
  • Thank and link back to the person who gave you this award. (Check!)
  • Share 8 things about yourself.
  1. My favorite classes in high school were Botany, Zoology, and Anatomy and Physiology.  Aside from my innate fascination with all things living, my teacher, Mr. Harclerode (the same for all three classes), was, completely, inspiring and challenged me to reach my fullest potential beyond just a grade.
  2. I graduated from Emporia State University, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education and an emphasis in Bicultural Education, as well as a Bachelor of Arts degree in Spanish, in four years, with a 4.0.  I'm a total nerd!
  3. I LOVE country music!  I don't get to listen as much as I'd like, anymore, and I couldn't tell you all the new artists; but it makes me giddy happy and brings back so many, sweet memories.
  4. One summer, while in college, I was a horseback riding instructor at a YMCA camp.  It was, physically, the hardest summer of my life; but my love for horses and children deepened, and I learned a valuable lesson.  I'm not indestructible!
  5. I have a major weakness for cheesecake and LaMar's doughnuts!
  6. I hate shopping!  Honestly!  When my sisters and Mom go shopping, I run for cover!  Once, I was convinced to go shopping with a guy friend of mine (He needed a new shirt for a date.) and ended up finding a quiet, comfortable spot to people watch, while he proceeded to look for hours and hours and hours.  Well, it seemed like that long, anyway.  I mean, really, how many different, button-up shirts could there, possibly, have been?!
  7. I will NEVER cut my hair short again!  Even the best stylist cannot keep my hair, when it's short, from looking like a football helmet.
  8. God is my rock!  I don't give Him enough credit for all the amazing things He has done in, through, and for me; and I've made it a personal goal, while I'll never fully know what all those things are until I meet Him face-to-face, to be better at sharing those things with others.
  • Pass it on to 8 bloggers, in no particular order.
  1. Savannah O'Gwynn... Don't be "mad" at Ruby.  We love you!
  2. Rose Marie Diehl ... I owe you for passing on the Cherry on Top Blog Award to me.  You are an amazing artist and brilliant Stampin' Up demonstrator.
  3. Laurel Seabrook...  You're, almost, always the first to comment on my latest creation.  Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for your encouragement!
  4. Kim Ryden... Thanks for challenging me to start a blog.  I never dreamed of all the wonderful opportunites it has brought me or fabulous people I've met!  And I'm looking forward to so much more! 
  5. Dawn Woleslagle... You took a leap and gave me a HUGE opportunity to represent you and your company.  Thank you will never fully express how much that meant and, still, means to me!
  6. Paige Evans... Just LOVE reading about little Fox, your life with Chris, and all the things you love!  Thanks for sharing your life with us and for bringing us so many fantastic challenges on CREATE:!
  7. Lynette Kauffman... You're my longest outstanding follower!  Go you!  Thanks for sticking with me through thick and thin!
  8. Winter Sims... What you're doing with the Cards for St. Jude Card Drive is beyond amazing!  You are a special gift to take this on two years running, and I commend you for doing so.
  • Contact those bloggers, and tell them about their award. (Check!)
And just because, I, also, feel like it tells a lot about me and reflects my heart, I wanted to share our, 2010 Christmas letter with all of you.

December 2010

Dear Family and Friends,

What a year it has been! We, probably, could say that of every year; but in looking back, at 2010, we are, especially, happy to be typing this letter from the warmth and comfort of our, treasured, little, old home.

Adina has become the perfect complement to our family of four. She is outgoing, while Ezekiel is reserved. She is daring and adventurous, while Ezekiel is hesitant and happy to stay home. She flies by the seat of her pants, while Ezekiel thrives on routine. She is a rule breaker, while Ezekiel is a rule follower. She has made us fully aware of the fact that we know nothing about parenting and created a desire within us to become the very best we can be for her and her big brother. She has her Daddy wrapped around her little finger with her big, brown, lashy eyes and loves everything girly from playing dress-up and tea party to wearing hair ribbons and shoes but doesn’t hold back when it comes to rough-housing with her brother, tackling our dogs, or playing with balls and trains. She, also, enjoys attending Story Time at our local library. In November, she celebrated her second birthday, complete with a jungle theme (She loves Curious George!) and family.

Ezekiel has become Adina’s role model and enjoyed learning what makes her scream and what causes her to laugh hysterically. This year, he has played basketball; taken swimming lessons; attended Vacation Bible School and Awana Club at First Baptist Church of Shawnee (FBCS); and got to see “Walking With the Dinosaurs”, with Mommy and Daddy, while Adina spent time with her Aunt Jamie and cousins. He has, also, loved having Mrs. Chappell as his, second-grade teacher, right at home, through A Beka Academy’s Video Streaming Program, which has been an enormous blessing to us all! New glasses, the loss of his seventh tooth, and borrowing, in his Arithmetic class, are his latest challenges, but he is tackling them all with grace and finesse. In July, he celebrated his seventh birthday with his first, overnight, backyard campout and sweet friends.

Jinny has loved continuing to be a stay-at-home, home school mom. She, still, enjoys teaching Sunday school, at Heartland Community Church (HCC), alongside BJ; gardening; cooking up dinners and desserts for new moms at HCC; sewing; scrapbooking; taking the kiddos on trips to the zoo and to see Grandpa and Grandma; and creating goodies for her Etsy shop ( She has been, overwhelmingly, blessed with the opportunity to put her creative gifts to work for the Wplus9 Design, online, stamp company, as well as a paper craft challenge blog, and cannot even begin to put into words what a source of joy they have become in her life. She, also, looks forward to her first card publication in May of 2011. (Oops!  I meant April 2011.  Yihoo!)

BJ continues to be blessed with work, as a project manager/estimator, at Bamford Fire Sprinkler Co., Inc. He, also, has enjoyed attending Men’s Journey and becoming a pastoral elder at HCC; serving as the ambassador, for HCC, at City Union Mission; fishing trips; and assisting in Ezekiel’s Awana class at FBCS. In June, he had the opportunity to go on a mission trip, to Mexico, with a group of teenagers and adults, from FBCS; where he helped build a house, for a family in need, through an organization known as Casas por Cristo.

This year, as a family, we’ve visited with countless friends and family members; picked apples on our, now, annual trip to Pome on the Range; re-roofed our little barn (shed), thanks to the much-appreciated help of Jinny’s cousin, Matt; enjoyed several camping trips; remembered the full life of BJ’s grandmother, Betty Weber; tackled a yard sale; celebrated BJ’s mom’s 60th birthday with a trip to Worlds of Fun; and, recently, rejoiced in the engagement of BJ’s sister, Hannah. (Welcome to the family, Johan!) In July, we began our summer vacation, with Jinny’s friend, Tara Burks, and her family, in Springfield, Missouri, at Fantastic Caverns and ended it, with sweet memories made, with our HCC, church family, in Osage Beach, Missouri, at Tan-Tar-A Resort.

The above is only a small compilation of our family calendar of events. It does not include many of the challenges, frustrations, sorrows, or victories we’ve experienced together. Through everything, that this year has dealt us, we have gained an, even, fuller knowledge of the fact that there is no greater source of peace than that which is found in our Savior, Jesus Christ. May that complete peace flood your hearts and homes this Christmas season and carry you all, triumphantly, through 2011.

God Bless, Barnabas J., Jinny, Ezekiel, and Adina Newlin

If you made it to the end of this post, wow!  And thanks for reading a little about what makes me me!  Have a fabulous day!


Fiona said...

well done Jinny! You are (and have been) one super busy woman :)

Lynn said...

Loved reading about you and your family Jinny! Thanks for sharing with us!

Laurie said...

What a great list Jinny! I loved reading more about you! I know when I come to visit we can go eat at Cheesecake Factory on the we can both eat Cheesecake! MY Fave too! :)

Rose said...

Wow, Jinny! Thanks so much for the award - that is so sweet of you! I enjoyed reading about you and your family. You are such a sweetheart and one amazing gal! xo,

Michele Gross said...

Wonderful post Jinny! So fun getting to learn a little more about you:) So instead of going shopping since we both hate it, we'll go horseback riding instead! My first love is horses and I rodeo'd forever!

Paige Taylor Evans said...

Thank you soooo much for the award! You are so sweet :)

farmhouse-story said...

such a beautiful post, jinny! i saw your card on create and wanted to congratulate you! its a beauty!