I’m Baaack: Just Some Thoughts

HELLO!

So I am still here I promise! I have no good excuse (again) for not writing in a while… it is a little thing called laziness and using school, work, etc as excuses not to write. So let me just say, SORRY!  Please forgive me (if there is even anyone listening).

As I sit here on this very cold and icy December night, I reflect back on my weekend.

Throughout the weekend I felt bored and, in all honesty, alone. But as I sit here and look back I realize, God really blessed me this weekend. I was so busy throughout the weekend worrying about what/who I didn’t have, when I should have been simply living in the moments God was giving me.

Why do we do that? (or am I the only one?)

Why do we allow ourselves to get so caught up in the negative and not in the positive. I have no right to be upset or even worried. God has put so much in my life that I am so incredibly thankful for. Unfortunately, sometimes I get too focused on what I don’t have and take what I do have for granted.

So here’s what: From now on I am going to challenge myself, in those times of being down and out, to 1) purposefully remember five things I have to be grateful for and 2) to find some way to spread kindness and love to one person in my life (whether it be through an encouraging word or through a random “just because” gift).

Will you join me?

Let’s use the Christmas Season to better ourselves and spread the true reason for the season!

…Ok now let me switch gears on you and share just a few pics of my weekend that (as I sit here and list it all out) I realize was pretty fun-filled!

In all my alone time this weekend I watched sappy (and very cheesy) Christmas Movies, did a few crafts, decorated the apartment for Christmas, took coffee to a studying friend, went to a vintage market, and went to see a movie with friends.

Literally at midnight on Friday I somehow got a jolt of Holiday energy and completely decked the halls of our apartment. Here are the results.

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After I slept in (seeing that I stayed up until 3am decorating), I went to one of my favorite things Lynchburg has to offer: the Vintage Lynchburg Holiday event… (if you remember I blogged about their spring event). This is seriously so much fun! Forgive me because I did not take any pictures inside but here is the entry sign… doesn’t it look so fun? They have local Etsy shops and other booths of just stuff… but fun stuff!

 

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Then there is downtown Lynchburg, it is such a cool place and I really don’t get down there enough…

cool little courtyard between two buildings…

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The glass building where Vintage Lynchburg was held…

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Pretty cool GIANT mosaic on the side of a building…

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And a lone little leaf on a brick path that I found interesting…

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Also, as I was at the Vintage Lynchburg event I was told about another similar event going on just a few blocks down… so naturally I had to go check it out! (again no pictures inside but such a cute sign, right?!)

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And then there was today… the icy icy wet day… even as I sit here I can hear people scraping the very thick ice off of their cars (who would be going anywhere this time of night in this weather?… not me!)

 

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And that was my weekend.

Thanks for listening. Thanks for joining me on the challenge to work through those times of negativity.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

God bless!

 

Summertime: Insights, Lessons, and Good Times

Well… it has been a minute…

This summer has been full of relaxation, work, a trip home, the big move (to another apartment), and spending time with some new friends!

As I sit here tonight, I wonder where the two long summer months went. It seems like I just finished the spring semester and summer just started.

I have had a lot of thinking time this summer and have honestly loved every minute of it. God has taught me things. I have learned things from other people. I have been faced with life decisions.

Now, I will be honest, being left alone with your thoughts is not always the best but hey, at least I learned a lot from it.

One of the biggest things I learned this summer? BE STILL, STAY CALM and know He has it all under control! (Exodus 14-13-14; Psalm 46:10 and Jeremiah 29:11).

Why is it that we get so caught up in busy lifestyles when what we should be doing is slowing down and tuning in? Life gets busy and things get hectic ,but I have learned we need to take time to slow down and just enjoy where we are. We need to learn to be all in, wherever God has us!

OK, so all that being said. I just wanted to post some pics of the times I got to enjoy this summer.

I got to go home for two weeks, spent great time with friends and family in MS, spent some good times here in VA with friends and met new people. So thankful for all the times I have had this summer, and it is not quite over yet.

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Family BBQ Southern  Style!

I sure do love my family! This trip home was full of good times and a little craziness (a few family members in the hospital and a very sick momma… but all are well again). It was a well needed trip as always! I miss my family while I am away and sometimes I wonder how I do it without seeing them every day, but it sure does make me appreciate their influence in my life and the times we do spend are all that more precious! I. LOVE. THEM.

 

Also got to spend a whole day with these two! Chris (the brother) and Becca (the sister in law) are two people that I will always look up to! They are just so…well…awesome! So glad I got to spend a day with them!

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THESE KIDS!!! There are just no words….

I just…love them. Spending time with these cuties always brings me joy! It seems like just yesterday, me and their mom and and Aunt Jo were making some of the same faces and having a blast! “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” Mark 10:14

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Beach time on Ship Island with mom! The only beach time I got to enjoy this summer and it was soooo good! And look at my cute Momma! Love her!

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And then there was the much needed time with the bestie and her hubs! This girl… I just miss her so much! I mean we are basically the same person. She has been a roommate, a confidant, a listener, ….. A TRUE FRIEND! Don’t know what I would do without my little Corey!

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Also got to spend some MUCH needed time with this one! Another great friend! My Shainty and I are two peas in a pod! Miss her!

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And we cant forget my trip down memory lane with my favorite Zach! We took a stroll through out old stomping grounds, the campus of the University of Southern Mississippi! Good times with an awesome friend!

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Well, and then there is BEAR. The newest addition to the Chris and Becca McArthur family! He’s a mess but he is so stinking cute! He loves his Aunt Courtney!

Of course there were so many other things I did and people I hung out with while at home but these are the few pictures that captured a few of those precious moments.

So after the trip home, it was back to life here in Lynchburg. Good times with new friends. New beginnings and free time!

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As I was driving to church one gorgeous Sunday morning I was so beautifully reminded of God’s power, love, grace, and….talent! What a beautiful view and a beautiful time to be reminded of His love and protection.

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What better to do in summer time than to go outside, enjoy time with new friends, and just relax. Festivals are so fun especially when you have some great company!

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Oh yeah, and… I found the cutest little “Hi, I am Sophia from the Golden Girls” purse for ONE DOLLAR at a fun garage sale downtown! Just thought I would add that in! ;)

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And then there is the moments like these. When you read something like this. A light bulb goes off and you receive a good slap in the face! But you know these are the moments I have learned to cherish and take to heart! “Knowing God takes faith, focus, and FOLLOWTHROUGH, and Jesus assures us that we will be rewarded. Don’t give up in your efforts to seek God.” Lesson here: DONT GIVE UP! Keep going! TRUST!

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So this is Hannah! She and I decided to attend every possible fireworks show offered in Lynchburg for the Fourth of July. Here we are at number one!

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And thanks to Miss Hannah I found a new favorite place to eat in downtown Lynchburg! So fun and so good!

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And then there was one of the best Independence Day celebrations I have ever been to. We celebrated at Thomas Jefferson’s summer home, Poplar Forest. We listened to the Declaration of INdependence being read, we learned what they ate in that day, and we saw how they lived. Great day remembering our country’s history and what it was founded on!

 

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And then there was another fireworks show! Our favorite of them all at the Lynchburg Hillcats baseball game. Great time with great friends!

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And then another fireworks show in downtown! Told you we attended quite a few! HAPPY FOURTH!

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Another fun thing about my summer? Meeting this sweet girl, Inga, from Germany! She cooked us a meal and even washed the dishes! ;) Loved learning about her culture and can’t wait to spend some more time with her in October!

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And I may have channeled a little Ninja Turtles action at some point as well! And this is Jill! Crazy girl! Love her! :)

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Also, I got to enjoy a few last views out of my first apartment here in Lynchburg! Love that place and will always miss it! But also thankful for change!

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Finally, I leave you with one of the greatest things I learned all summer. “The Lord Himself will fight for you. Just. Stay. Calm.” Exodus 14:13-14. Calm….such a weird concept in this fast paced culture, but just stay calm and He will provide. He will fight. He will keep his promises. He will show you love. He will show you HOW to love. He will bring you peace! Man, I just love those light bulb moments!

So to sum it all up… It has been a a great summer and time has flown. God has taught me. I have been able to grow. I have made some new friendships and got to spend some great time with old friends! I got to see my family and be there when some hard times hit (because believe me it would have been harder to be away during it all than it was to be there).

What a summer! So thankful! I have grown. I have learned. I have relaxed.

Here’s to a new semester and a busier way of life than what I have been used to the past two months. Here we go! Bring it on!

Love you guys! Thanks for listening! Be back soon! :)

The City That Never Sleeps

Let me just start by saying… I LOVE NEW YORK CITY!

Seriously it is one of my most favorite places I have ever been. If you have never been (and don’t mind walking A LOT) I highly recommend it!

There is so much to do and see and eat! I just love the energy and just the beauty of the city.

OK, so my best friend Corey Collete called me up one day and invited me to come to the city with them. Even though the date fell smack-dab in the middle of busiest time of my semester, I thought WHY NOT?! You only live once right? So I bought a train ticket and was headed on my way! We were only going to have 2 full days in one of the biggest cities in the world. So I packed my walking shoes and comfortable (but cute of course) clothes and was ready. I only wish we had thought to bring a pedometer to track exactly how many steps we actually walked…

Well, instead of talking about the whole trip I am just going to share some of my fave pics from the weekend.

But first I have to explain a few things: So I got to NYC around 3pm and not even five minutes after I stepped off the train I saw one of my favorite actors from one of my favorite shows, Revenge!

Agh! Love him!

And then…that night we were walking down Broadway (I love being able to say that) and walked past the theater of the play that TOM HANKS is starring in. Long story short, we got rained on and then we got to see TOM HANKS (and several other famous people form his play but I don’t want to brag…haha)!!!! Oh. My. Word. Talk about an A-List celebrity sighting!

I had to fight the urge to yell out "Run Forest Run!"

I had to fight the urge to yell out “Run Forest Run!”

OK so now that I have explained (or bragged) about my celebrity sightings, I will share some of my fave pics from the weekend!

I think I’ve found where I want to live! I think I fit in… right?

The blue door…. Oh.My.!!

Taxi!!

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OK, so this is DEFINITELY my most favorite part of this wonderful city! Washington Square Park. It was a gorgeous day and there were people everywhere just enjoying the weather and the beauty of this park. There were street performers all around! We sat down behind these two guys that were tap dancing. And they were GOOD (check out the pic below)! It was so peaceful here and just… great. I need to live here.

I just don’t even know what to say… I just love it!

This picture below is truly one of my favorite pictures from the whole trip! I will probably say I have a lot of favorites before this post is over with, but this one is… well it is a fave! It was cloudy this day but this view of the Brooklyn Bridge, I think is awesome!

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And then there is Central Park!

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When in New York you have to buy a hot dog from a street vendor! Mmmm Shameless eating photo below!

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This is another one of my favorite pictures (see I told you I would say this several times). This is my best friend Corey Collette and I just waiting on the Subway.

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And of course you can’t go to NYC and not go to F.A.O Schwarz. In my opinion, one of the happiest places on earth! OK, maybe I exaggerate a bit, but seriously so fun! I mean a place full of any toy you can think of, candy, and a huge piano (aptly named The Big Piano). So fun!

Oh. My. Goodness. And then there is this. Frozen Hot Chocolate from Serendipity 3! Oh. So. Good. It is such a quaint little place made famous by the movie, Serendipity. You may have to wait in line, but, in my opinion, it is worth it!

More beautiful pictures of Central Park. It was such a gorgeous day. I could have spent all day just soaking it all in!

I could share oh so many more pictures of this trip. I think at the end of the two and a half days we had taken about 450 pictures! So I will spare you of the plethora of pictures we took!

I just love this city and was so thankful for the opportunity to go again, not to mention it was with some of my favorite people!

So I leave this post by saying, travel when you have the chance! Take time to see it all and appreciate the beauty of wherever it is you go! Don’t be afraid to try new and crazy foods, forget the diet for one week. Shop your heart out {yeah you might have to just window shop but that’s ok}. Take lots and lots and lots of pictures!

Traveling is always fun and I say why not do it while you can!

I will leave you with one more pic of one of the best views of the city, form the top of the Empire State Building!

Thanks for listening and have fun with wherever the road may take you!

Photo creds: Corey Corkern Fuller, Dustin Fuller, Josh Bianchini and Courtney McArthur

Beautiful Day

Well hello again everyone! This week has been…well… let’s just say busy…. Working on a research proposal all week (and still not done) has really taken it out of me. SO, today, Saturday, I decided to separate myself  from all aspects of the paper and school, in general, and enjoy the beautiful (finally) weather and “pamper” myself!

In December, I caught word of this awesome market someone was putting on here in town, called Vintage Lynchburg (Lynchburg is the name of the town just in case you didn’t catch on to that…). I went to check it out and.. It. Was. Awesome.

Well then, I was in the coffee shop studying one night (when am I not in there studying?), and saw a flyer for the Vintage Lynchburg SPRING MARKET!!! Agh!

Ok, so maybe today’s “separation from studying” was a little premeditated… but, long story short this is what I decided to do with my day today… and then added in a MUCH needed haircut and then splurged and got my nails done…and BONUS, they gave me a tiny shoulder and head massage as part of the manicure! Phew I needed that!

So here are a few pics from the day. Oh, and I forgot to explain. The Vintage Lynchburg Market is this awesome market some girls here in town started. It is basically a big market of Etsy shops come to life (as in not just on the internet but where you could actually shop “in” them for one day). Talk about the most awesome thing ever!!!! And for a girl like me who is obsessed with stuff like that and would one day like to have an Etsy shop of her own, this was the perfect way to enjoy the day! So wallet and camera in hand, I headed on my way!

Oh dear it already looks cute!

Well, I don’t mind if I do….

These are a few of my favorite things (yes I wrote that as I sang the sing from “Sound of Music” in my head)…

But seriously, I love things like this…anything antique…anything re-purposed. Love it! So you can imaging when I walked in and these were some of the first things I saw, I immediately became overwhelmed and so excited I couldn’t even stand it (I am weird I know).

It just… Makes me happy!

And then there is the clothes! I love vintage clothing and accessories!

I had to pace myself!

After some heavy shopping and taking it all in I gathered my lute and decided to move on…

Exit this way please…

And here is what we ended up with:

My friend Hannah got this AWESOME chair and even was able to barter on the price a bit! (another thing about this kind of shopping that I absolutely love!)

And here’s my findings: a recipe box (Regeneration Lynchburg), a totally awesome sewing box (supplies included), a really cool “saddle bag” purse, and two really cute small loaf pans (I love anything for the kitchen) all of which came from a shop called Sassy Sal Sells. So cute!

Well that was fun! After leaving here I enjoyed the weather and a nice relaxing day of hair and nails. Ahhhh

Aside from all the cute things I bought I got lots and lots of inspiration for things to do this summer! (hopefully more to come on that as school winds down).

I ended this glorious day by relaxing at home with movies and taco soup (sharing that recipe soon!).

Thanks for listening everyone! See you all soon and wish me luck on this crazy paper!!!!

I will be going to NYC in just about 6 days! So get ready for some great pics!

Enjoy spring and don’t forget to slow down and take it all in!

Love and peace,

CourtneyLynn

Sorry, I love pics of flowers...they're just so beautiful

Sorry, I love pics of flowers…they’re just so beautiful

A few other shops i visited today: The Honeysuckle Shop, The White Birch Depictions

Spring has FINALLY Sprung! (Cute Outfits, Flowers and Cookouts)

Finally, IT IS HERE! The flowers are coming out and the weather is warm!

Seriously, just two weeks ago, it was this,

snow

But now… THIS!

white flowers

This literally puts a “spring” in my step! (get it?…)

Folks, it’s time for cute clothes, no more boots in the attire for a while, cool drinks, catching some rays, cookouts, and basically finding any excuse to be outside! Yay!

So on Sunday, in lieu of the awesome weather, some friends decided to have a cookout… So obviously I picked out a cute outfit (according to me of course), bought some chips (unfortunately no time to cook for this one), and headed on my way!

The outfit:

Simplicity is sometimes my fave… comfy jeans, jean shirt, printed fedora, simple flats, and some bracelets (my absolute fave accessory in the warmer weather!).

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So here is the way I think when I choose an outfit:

Bracelets:Like I said, this is my absolute fave accessory in the warmer weather! What better, easier way to add a pop of color to ANY outfit. You can stack them (Like I did here), wear just a few bangles and let them speak for themselves, or just wear one, off-the-wall colored, wrap bracelet and be bold in a small way.

The Hat: OK so I LOVE hats! I never get the chance to wear them so whenever I feel like it’s an occasion “worthy” of a hat, I have to jump at the chance. I love this hat! This style, the Fedora, I feel like is easy to wear for anyone. Long hair, short hair, dark hair, light hair, doesn’t matter…. I think it’s cute on all! And not to mention it is fashion forward and lots of fun!

The Clothes: Who says you can’t wear jean on jean? I like the light color on the dark color… it is simple but fun! And not to mention so comfortable for these warmer days!

Someone once told me, “The best accessory you can wear, is CONFIDENCE. Wear what you want, own it, and everyone will love it!”

So I say…Why not add a pop of color (big and bold or small and bold)? Why not wear a hat and have fun with it? Have fun with your outfits and OWN IT!

The Cookout:

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(yes the hat is missing… it was windy and I wasn’t ready to lose it to the gusts)

Mmmmmm… burgers, hot dogs, and friends!

These are some of the reasons (besides the cute clothes) that I love this time of year! Get out there folks and enjoy this weather! Get rid of those winter time blues and join the spring time joys!

So, find a cute outfit, BE CONFIDENT, gather some friends, do something outside, and love life!

flowers

Peace and Love,

Courtney Lynn

Welcome to My New Blog!

Hello! Courtney Lynn here! WELCOME!

OK this may sound funny, crazy, dumb… but did you guys ever see that movie Julie & Julia? Well, if you didn’t here is a brief synopsis: Julia Child was a normal woman who became a world-known chef of French cooking. Julie Powell was a normal woman, married and living what she called a boring life. She wanted to do something besides work… so she was inspired to blog about her adventure of cooking her way through Julia Child’s cookbook in 365 days. She blogs and learns lessons…

Julie & Julia

Such a cute movie! Beware it will make you hungry and want to cook!

This of course is not the whole story, but I don’t want to ruin for you who haven’t seen it! It is soooo cute! Anyways…. every since I saw that movie I have wondered what it would be like to start a blog…

So, over the last couple of days my best friend Corey Collette  (be sure to check out her blog) has inspired me to start a blog. Also, my brother, Chris (check out his blog too!),  has recently started a blog and all of his posts are so inspiring and just really motivational. So… here goes nothing… my very own venue to share about my life, in words and pictures!

Me and crawfish

Hello! This is just me enjoying some delicious crawfish over Spring Break in New Orleans, LA. Yummm

A little about me:

My name is Courtney Lynn McArthur (hence the name of my blog ,CourtneyLynnMc, creative I know!). I am currently a graduate student pursuing a Master’s in Professional Counseling (bleh, sounds boring I know, but all is going well so far). I loooooove…. “creativity”, to sum it all up in one word.I am a self-proclaimed fashionista, do-it-youself-er, foodie, and lover of life. I am in agreement with my brother in that I am “I am born again and spirit-filled – Don’t freak out, but yeah, it is true!” (quoted from McArthurScript.com). I love the Lord and try my hardest to do it all for His glory.

My day to day life, right now, consists of studying, writing papers (which means I frequent the local coffee shop quite often), going to work, sleeping, and being creative and cooking when I get the chance. My full schedule unfortunately holds me back from channeling my creative self, but there is good news on the horizon!

I will not be taking any classes this summer so I plan to use my free time to shop, create, cook, travel, etc. and I want to take all of you with me!

A few things to expect from this blog:

  1. PICTURES! I love to snap pictures of whatever inspires me so expect ALOT of pics on here! you can also follow me on Instagram.com (you’ll find me at Courtneymc2911) to see some of my fave pics from my recent life…
  2. Fashion according to ME. So I briefly mentioned that I was a self-proclaimed fahionista. I do not claim to know all the latest trends and know “what not to wear.” But I do know I enjoy expressing myself through my fashion. So as I shop, obsess on Pintrest, etc. I will update on here and share outfit inspirations and maybe some other things as well.
  3. “Thrifting”: OK so this seems like I should have included it with fashion, but I felt this needed it’s own category. I looooove to go shopping at thrift stores, for a couple of reasons: it is CHEAP, it usually goes for a good cause, and it is FUN! So I will take you all on thrifting adventures with me. We will find treasures for the home and the closet and “fix them up” or learn how to wear it as is and OWN IT!
  4. Food. I do love to cook! I am by NO means a chef or even good at cooking but I do love it. I love to watch FoodNetwork (my fave of all is ThePioneerWoman, she has her own blog too, which is amazing!). And of course, I love to eat! So I will take you on cooking adventures with me and… eating aventures ;).
  5. LIFE. I will also use this to just talk… talking about life is always good!

I hope this sounds interesting to you who are listening. I have always dreamed of being a blogger and simply sharing things I find interesting with the… world. Blogging seems like the best outlet for that so again….here goes nothing!

Me!

Thanks for stoppin by! See ya soon!

Hope you all enjoy!

Peace and Love,          CourtneyLynn