February 24, 2012

Sally and Puff

The first installment of Retro Friday - spreading a little vintage sweetness each week.

Oh, Sally and Puff, you are just too cute for words...
Silly Puff.

 Kittens and kids just make me smile :)

... and after weeks of blog identity crisis I have finally settled on the new look for 'take joy',
hope you enjoy it!

Happy {retro} Friday!

February 19, 2012

lifting my heart tonight...

is this snazzy little tune from Jason Zerbina Canadian Christian Indie band (whoa - say that three times fast...) based in my own home province!

If you like the symphonic sounds of Coldplay and the quirkiness of Emiliana Torrini, you will love the sound of Zerbin.

I challenge you to listen to this catchy tune and not have the whistle stuck in your head all night!

More on Zerbin here: zerbinmusic.com
and more of their music here!


Oh, you little word with weighty meaning...

{free printable found here}

How I needed to hear you today.
How I needed my Father to restore hope to my heart and mind.
After wrestling deep with a frightful emptiness.

For me, some days, hope is a battle.
I am yet wading through grief,
and though I might look ok on the outside,
I may not be so ok on the inside.
And I need to be ok with that.

This is a season.
There is good.
I will have hope.
Hope for our future.

If you have a minute friend,
would you pray for me?
I would appreciate it so much.
xo Andrea

"But now Lord, what do I look for? My hope is in you."
Psalm 39:7

February 16, 2012

Anne & Road to Avonlea

S-w-o-o-n-ing over a super-special package I received in the mail yesterday!

I grew up on a steady book-diet of L.M. Montgomery - and many years after these treasures were written came the Anne movies, and the Road to Avonlea TV series. 

My family would faithfully gather around every Sunday night for 'CBC Family Hour' at 7pm, laughing at the antics of Felix and Sarah, swooning over Gus and Felicity and revelling in the strong, simple community portrayed in each season. Many little life-lessons were gleaned and I can distinctly remember my parents re-inforcing these lessons as we were watching...

Neal and I spent an evening a couple weeks ago in much the same way, relaxing in front of the fire and watching Anne of Green Gables as it was running on some kind of tele-thon (isn't he the best? he admitted to having a crush on Anne when he was younger! Oh yes, real men watch Anne of Green Gables - haha! I, in turn, support his Star Wars fetish...) Anyways... Sullivan Entertainment advertised that they have a website, which I *of course* had to check out after the show.

Turns out Sullivan Entertainment teamed up with a vintage clothing shop and was (still is!) selling off many of the costumes worn in Road to Avonlea and some of their other series. Some of the pieces I remembered from the show were already purchased but I was able to snag a special something!

A darling blue-knit, Peter-pan collared sweater worn in Season 2 and quite often in season 4 by Sarah Polley (who plays Sarah in the R to A series), and Jackie Burroughs (who played Aunt Hetty) with a certificate signed by Kevin Sullivan himself!

(cover of Season 2 via)

I spent the afternoon dancing around the house, I was so excited (I didn't expect such an official looking signed certificate!) I could barely stammer out the words to explain my perma-grin when I picked Neal up from work! 

Here is a little taste of this beloved series, and at 0:44 you can see the lighthouse we visited on PEI last summer (Seacow Head).

This week has topped the charts, 
second only to visiting PEI and seeing the 'White Sands Hotel and Seacow Head lighthouse with my very own eyes!

And did you know that February 17th is Anne of Green Gables Fan Appreciation Day?
You can join the festivities over here!

So, in honour of one of my womanly heroes - Lucy Maud Montgomery, I'll leave you with a gem of a beautiful thought:

“The world calls them its singers and poets and artists and storytellers; but they are just people who have never forgotten the way to fairyland.”
 L.M. Montgomery

February 15, 2012

Photoshoot fave's

...from our recent shoot with Chelsea

We wanted to capture the stage of life we are in, 
looking back in thanks from where we have come,
looking ahead to whatever God has in store,
with open and willing hearts.

I had a few ideas in mind - pops of red, our salvaged house numbers,
and then Chelsea went totally over the top, finding a vintage trunk at a local second hand store, a darling red polka-dot umbrella and a gorgeous red, white and black print throw.


(this one makes me laugh every time... so classically 'us')

Thank you Chelsea - we LOVE them!! I have a feeling you are going to be one busy photographer :)

February 14, 2012

3 years ago...

in my little basement apartment,

after a shaky and heartfelt proclamation of love,
after reading a poem written many years before,
when his future wife was but a vision and a whole lot of faith,
he asked me to be his.

How lucky am I, to be that woman he waited for,
the woman he shares his heart fully and un-reservedly with.

I know there were others he could have chosen,
through many years of waiting,
but he was waiting...
for me.

Imperfect me,
having gone through a relational tornado,
learning much about what it takes to make a marriage work,
and surviving the heartache of a marriage that didn't.

He still chose me.

In this beautiful dance of life 
we continue to choose each other,
every day.

So to this man among men,
I want to say...

Thank you for waiting for me,
for choosing me every day,
and for loving so wholly and completely.

with all my heart
every day

(a little sneak peek from our photo shoot with this lovely lady)

Happy Heart Day!

February 9, 2012

red like cherries

(an eye-candy post)

This picture came across my Tumblr recently and made my heart flutter...

The freestanding-kitchen idea is quite common in the UK, and not only do I like the idea, I LOVE the pops of red, and Katie Daisy-ish accents.

Here's a gem from Pinterest-ing last week,

Is it not the prettiest stove you have ever seen? I could give it a home in a heartbeat...

And I can't help but dream of my favourite Miss Katie print gracing my fantasy-kitchen,

Some dream in colour, I dream in cherry-red...

Be filled with joy today! :)

February 3, 2012

saying Yes to God.

*continuing these thoughts*

"I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. 25 The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. 26 Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me."

Lord, I feel You impressing eternity so strongly, You know my life is Yours. I know my life is Yours. You enter into messes, into the lives of those who don't have everything figured out, into lives where the ducks are all over the pond, instead of neat little rows. 

In one breath I feel that our life now is so unsettled and all over the place, and yet You are in it and You bring peace and purpose. I don't need to be 'ready', I just need to hold tight to You.

In secret, deep prayers I ask for You to make me ready for moving and shaking. To follow You for I am your servant, and I want to be where You are. 

I surrender my dreams of a comfortable life. 

Each day I seek and will continue to seek where and how You would have me serve.

Now is God's perfect time.

 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.
 And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.
Revelation 21:4 & 5 KJV

February 2, 2012

Banana Chocolate Oat Cookies

I excitedly began mashing up bananas for banana muffins when I peeked in the over drawer and realized there are no muffin pans in this place!

So I hopped on-line and found this amazing, healthy (yay!) and super-easy-hardly-any-ingredients recipe. I altered the recipe slightly after reading the comments... I like to be creative with add-ins!

So here's a link to the original recipe, and I'll entice you with my version below (which includes... chocolate!)

Just mix;

3 mashed bananas
2 1/2 C rolled oats
1/3 C applesauce
1/3 C honey
a small handful of chocolate chips 
1 tsp cinammon
1 tsp vanilla

That's it - no flour, no eggs, no sugar, baking powder, butter, soda or milk - plain & simple!

Mix well and let stand for 10-15 min.
Take teaspoons-full and flatten them on a lightly greased pan. 
Bake @ 350F for approx. 20 min, until golden brown.

While baking you can dance around the kitchen to this;
or at least I did... ;)

February 1, 2012

Yaaaaaaay! It's February!

I kinda have a 'thing' for February.

Perhaps it's because I looooove pink & red & white,
or all the hearts,
celebrating love,
or my little birthday happening,
or the fact that Neal proposed one special February 14th.

Can't put my finger on it, I just love it all! 

This year especially, as I have a happy little photo-date/couples shoot planned with the lovely and talented Chelsea of Chelsea Dawn Photography!

I picked up a pair of red knit mitts and a red knit toque for the occasion. Neal has a great fuzzy trappers hat we are going to try get in there, and I have a new community with a lot of history and interesting locations to scout out.

Oh so fun!

Here's a peek at some of the ideas rolling around in my head...

Yay! Can't wait!

Happy Heart Month!