The Adventures of a Baby Blue Convertible

Meet Audrey, my new(ish) baby blue convertible bug.

I'm kinda in love with her.

Every time I drive her, I love her a bit more.

Every time I drive her, I feel a bit more fabulous.

Every time I drive her, I smile. A lot.

She plays music oh so nicely.

And when the weather's nice, we have a lot of fun.

She may be small.

She may not be able to fit all of my stuff for Disney this fall.

But Audrey is freedom.

Audrey is classy.

Audrey is messy hair and hands in the air.

She takes a few elegance tips from her namesake, Audrey Hepburn.

She drives like a gentle wave of water. Or a fierce shopaholic after that last pair of shoes.

I'm not one for cleaning cars, but I want to clean Audrey.

I'm not one to like driving, but I like driving Audrey.

So, meet Audrey.

She's kinda the best.

Comment your thoughts on Audrey, and give @emroseimages a follow on Instagram for these AMAZING pictures!

Princess Hannah (and Audrey)


Chasing Summer

Every summer I make so many plans. I want to hang out with friends and make ice cream and watch movies and write books and read books and go on adventures and learn things and sleep and laugh and the list goes on and on. (There are a lot of "ands" in that sentence!)

In the beginning of the summer, I feel so sure that I can do all of these things. After all, summer is a wide open field for me to run around dancing in like Troy Bolton. 

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The truth is, life isn't a dance number in a Disney Channel movie. It doesn't always turn out sunny and organized. Even summer gets chaotic and crazy. We can forget the steps or trip over our own feet. 

It's time that we let go of our expectation of a perfect summer and started to enjoy it for the normal, messy, wonderful opportunity that it is. 

It's time that we stopped chasing a perfect summer and started living in the time given to us. 

So, instead of chasing a perfectly Instagram-worthy summer, how about we... 

1. Celebrate the small steps

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I cleaned out my closet today. Sure, that's boring and not particularly noteworthy, but I'm celebrating that accomplishment. I've needed to clean out my closet for a while, and it feels good to complete that chore. Thank you, summer, for giving me time to clean my closet. 

2. Do normal things with summer flair

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While you're driving to the grocery store, blast your favorite summer tunes (preferably Ben Rector). Wear a sundress while shopping. Watch your favorite shows while cleaning. (I may or may not have gone through a dozen episodes of Parks and Rec while organizing my closet...) 

3. Prioritize your days

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Let's face it, there are a lot of normal things that can eat away our days. This isn't bad, but it does mean that we have to be intentional on how we want to spend our time, because if not, our time will spend itself. Do you want to throw a summer bash? Make sure that you set aside the time to do that. Want to make a scrapbook? Do it, even if that means you can't do something else. Without placing value on the things that you want to accomplish, they won't get done. 

4. Remember what it's all about

Summer is great, but it only lasts a couple of months. Let's not live our summers in light of our momentary happiness but in light of the eternal joy of God. He has given us this summer to enjoy and use for His kingdom. 

"Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness and all of these things will be given to you as well." (Matthew 6:33)

5. Compare less

Your summer will not look like my summer. It won't look like your favorite Instagramer's summer. It will be unique and wonderful, but if you're caught up in the comparison game, you may miss the beauty of your own summer. Look up. See the great gift before you and don't undervalue it because it looks different from someone else's gift.

May this not be a summer of high expectations or busy nothings. May this summer be a summer of joy, productivity, memories, and grace. It's about time that we stopped letting our expectation about summer steal our summer joy. It's time to reclaim the moments that this summer offers to us and enjoy them as what they are, moments.

How are you enjoying your summer so far? What are your summer plans? Do you love HSM 2 as much as I do? Answer in the comments!

Princess Hannah



The Lesson of Disappointment

I planned on going to NYC this summer to study with American Ballet Theatre, one of the top ballet companies in the world. It was a dream of mine, a wonderful, crazy dream.

When I broke my foot, I stopped dreaming. It hurt too much to anticipate something clouded in uncertainty and pain. I thought it better to not desire this opportunity at all than to desire it and then have it taken away. 

I didn't want to desire something, because to desire something is to face disappointment in the eye. That is a hard battle. 

I lost.

And so, the disappointment of the broken foot claimed yet another dream. 

"Mom," I said a few days ago. "I thought that I already learned my lesson. I missed recital. I went through the pain, complications and inconveniences of breaking my foot. I've learned so much about trusting God. Why couldn't He have let me have this?"

What she said stuck with me. 

"Sometimes, we have to learn the lesson of disappointment." 

When I face a trial, I want to know why. Why did I go through this? There must be some lesson that I need to learn, some person that I am supposed to inspire. I put the pressure on myself to make the suffering worth my while. If I’m going to go through this suffering, I might as well write a book about what I learned through it.

If I’m honest, though, sometimes the lesson learned isn't something big and inspiring.

Sometimes, I have to learn the lesson of disappointment.

I don’t mean to sound pessimistic. I don’t mean to say that life is a pit of sorrow, and we should just give up and watch Netflix all day. What I mean is that on this earth, we will face disappointment. It’s part of sin. It’s part of learning. It’s simply part of life before eternity.

This rhythm of disappointment points us in two directions: pity parties or praise parties.

No one throws a pity party like a disappointed person. Trust me, I know. And the world expects us to throw spectacular pity parties. After all, Adele makes her living off of pity parties!

There is another reaction to disappointment, though. Hope. Praising God in hope.

I don’t mean that we hope that our disappointment will go away. I am talking about a deeper, more secure hope. An eternal one. I am talking about the hope of Jesus.

Jesus comes to us in our disappointment and reminds us that this world is broken, but He has fixed our souls in His grace. He reminds us that this world is fading, but He has built an eternal home for us. He reminds us that our lives are not about us, but He has given us a purpose far bigger than any disappointment.

Jesus comes to us in our disappointment and reminds us of Himself. He gives us the chance to take our eyes off of our disappointments and onto His faithfulness. He takes our desires and holds them carefully, all the while making Himself the chief desire of our soul. (See my Tangled post for more of those thoughts.)

God doesn't promise us a life without disappointments. He does, however, promise strength for the suffering, grace for the hurting, and rest for the weary. He teaches us so much through trials, and sometimes, He teaches us the lesson of disappointment.

The lesson of disappointment is a slow one. It is a humble one. It is a quiet one. You have to really hush down the pity parties to hear it, but when you do, you will find that the disappointments are invitations to let go.

Let go of trying to force everything to be clear. Let go of seeking to understand the lesson in suffering and simply seek Christ in suffering.

That's the beautiful thing about the lesson of disappointment, it points us to Christ. It forces us to lean in faith upon His goodness even when we can hardly see the path beneath our feet, let alone five feet ahead or behind. It shows us just how wonderful He is because the things around us- and even our own selves- seem so frail. 

Emily Freemen’s book Simply Tuesday has a chapter that inspired part of this blog post. On page 178 of her book, she says:

“I confess how disappointed I am that I don’t have clarity. But in the confession, I begin to see Christ. I begin to release my obsession with building my life into something linear, something I can figure out. Instead, I believe that letting go doesn’t mean I’ll be left with nothing. It means I can more fully hold on to Christ and trust the life he is building within me. I sense him inviting me to trust him, not because I’ll finally understand, but because I’ll begin to believe that he understands me.”

Here it goes. Life, a life full of desire and disappointment, lies ahead of us. We could go about it scared. Scared of desires which disappoint. Scared of disappointments which crush our desires. Or, we could live confident in Christ. Confident that He is bigger than any disappointment, even the ones that don’t make sense. We can live with Him as our chief, secure desire and hope.

Have you dealt with disappointment? Are you getting tired of this rather lengthy string of posts about suffering? Tell me your thoughts and experiences in the comments!

Princess Hannah