Light and Loveliness

Reflections of Emily Sue Allen

Date archives January 2015

Family / Life & Faith


Do Not Copy

One sibling photo a week throughout the year. 3/52

How is January treating you, friends? Now that we’re days away from February, and beyond the flurry of whimsical New Years Resolutions, what is really on your heart for the coming year? What is your vision?

Vision is something that is on my heart. How does one capture/create vision for life, when its clear that we have no idea what the future really holds? In my mind, vision is something that steadies me on the journey. It’s a whisper into my ear that helps me stay focused on making the small choices every day that keep me pointed in the direction I set out to go.

Quite honestly, it is my experience that vision is a gift from God. It is wisdom from somewhere else that puts my life in order in a way that I would probably not have figured out on my own. I have to cooperate, but I really can’t take credit for the ability to see it or the will to follow through with the process. For me, vision is about tiny, daily changes that hopefully lead into an overarching transformation of life. It is about creating order from chaos, peace from stormy seas, patience from restlessness, love from self-centeredness, confidence from brokenness. In short, its not easy, and not something I would be able to do if not for the mercy of God.

I had a conversation recently with someone I love very much. We talked about how to decide which way to go when you’re at a crossroads. In the midst of angst and uncertainty, what we really need is wisdom. Wisdom is not the same as cleverness or certainty or self-confidence. You could be the most intelligent person on the planet and somehow miss the wisdom boat. There is a required humility in owning the fact that we do not know everything (or in my case, really anything) and seeking God for the wisdom we need. If you’re in a tough season, if you aren’t sure what your vision is for this year, or if you’re at an uncomfortable crossroads, I would urge you to seek out wisdom from God.

I don’t claim to have answers, but I do have a hand of friendship to extend. If you need someone in your corner, feel free to reach back. I’d be honored to journey with you.

Do Not Copy

Here is some kid art to make you smile. It says, “12. Go Hawks. Yes Hawks. Go. Yes. Hawks. *Snowman*”

Do Not Copy

And here is my baby-faced love who now has an upper tooth poking through! I tried getting a picture of it, but that didn’t go so well, so maybe next time.

Update on goals for week 3:

1) Run/walk at least 10 miles per week. Week 3 ~ 8 Run/Walk miles traveled, 28.5 cumulative in 2015
2) Write 10,000 words weekly. Week 3 ~ estimated 3,000 words completed, 15,000 cumulative in 2015


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“If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and He will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.” James 1:5 NLT

“The message of the cross is foolish to those who are headed for destruction! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God.” 1 Corinthians 1:18

“Pride leads to disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.” Proverbs 11:2

561. animal baby pajamas, 562. new chomper, 563. bedtime conversations with a five year old about babies and mama tummies, 564. a successful sunday run, 565. smoothing out some rough spots, 566. sewing a sweet blanket in under an hour, 567. hawks mania, 568. peaceful home, 569. the example of those who give their lives to serve others, 570. sleeping in a long while



Short n’ sweet this week, because you know. Life. Perhaps I’ll have more to say later on, or perhaps the reality of life at this moment is that a few words and a few snaps are all I can manage. I’m grateful for the full and busy.

Do Not Copy

One sibling photo a week throughout the year. 2/52

You might be tempted to think this little one (below) is all sweet and nice. Truly, she is…but there is a fierce lion-heart in that little package as well. Don’t believe me? Just have a gander at the last photo of her shouting, “GO HAWKS!”

In every other way, the photo is a discard, but I hope it brings you as hearty a laugh as it did for me.

Watch out, world.

Do Not Copy Do Not Copy

Update on goals for week 2:

1) Run/walk at least 10 miles per week. Week 2 ~ 9 Run/Walk miles traveled, 20.5 cumulative in 2015
2) Write 10,000 words weekly. Week 2 ~ estimated 5,000 words completed, 13,000 cumulative in 2015


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“Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, Lord, my rock and my Redeemer.” Psalm 19:14

551. repeatedly being called ‘silly’ by a little firecracker, 552. ‘ikea’ shoes (aka Nike), 553. munchy munch candy bunch, 554. miraculous hawks win, 555. new family vision for 2015, 556. a supportive spouse, 557. blue skies, 558. finding items i lost, 559. midnight prayers answered, 560. continued weight loss


Sunshine in January

Have you ever seen so many happy faces in the sun, in January, in Seattle? We are all excited to be starting off a new year of adventures, and the grandparents will be happy to know that I’m continuing my one-photo-a-week challenge, this time with the focus solely on the kids. Here we have a little snap from a day at the park earlier this week. We couldn’t pass up the invitation of some of our favorite friends to join them for playground fun. Park playdates are not the norm for this time of year, and it was an extra-special afternoon. Also, #2’s gaping tooth hole makes a grand debut, so don’t miss that. Gotta love the goofy smiles.

One sibling photo a week throughout the year. 1/52

Below is my oldest with her greatly-loved friend. These two are cut from the same wacky-awesome cloth. They both have creativity coming out their ears.

With the start of a new year, I have, of course, started some new goals. I may share more of them later, but I’ve decided to share two measurable ones that I will possibly update here on the blog along with the weekly photo each week, if I remember to. I love making goals, but try not to let them run my life in a negative way. Goals are only awesome if they help, not if they stress. I am comfortable with the reality that I may not be able to meet them every week, but I know for a fact that if I don’t set them, there is no way I’ll even come close. They are:

1) Run/walk at least 10 miles per week. Week 1 ~ 11.5 Run/Walk miles traveled, 11.5 cumulative in 2015
2) Write 10,000 words weekly. Week 1 ~ estimated 8,000 words completed, 8,000 cumulative in 2015

Do you make goals? I’d love to know what you’re dreaming about doing in 2015. What is new with you?


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“Sunshine is sweet; it is good to see the light of day. People ought to enjoy every day of their lives.” Eccl. 11:7-8a

541. constellation activity complete, 542. park playdate in the sun, 543. a few smooth days this week, 544. reading successes, 545. peace, 546. free paper, 547. a listening ear, 548. new ideas, 549. baby curls, 550. surprise mail

Creativity / Life & Faith / Poetry



the ship i sail crashes the rocks

sharp water lashes

striking stones scrape

thunderous fear claps overhead

reverberations of brokenness

from lifetimes ago


revisiting aches, once put to rest

insides churn and boards buckle and

i wonder how long i will last


i am tender of heart and strong of will


i hold with white knuckles and pray nothings

and thrash

fearing not reality, but memory


i struggle to live now what is now

and leave then what was then


to let light touch my eyes

to make bright what i often forget


i am not the sailor, only the sail

stretched wide to catch wind

to catch breath

the promise that only surrender and trust

can bring up from the deep



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“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Phil. 4:6-7

531. a rescuing husband, 532. new tire, 533. two year old negotiations, 534. six year old tooth-holes, 535. sweet party plans, 536. help, 537. miles journeyed on foot, 538. the smooth day before the bumpy one, 539. silent-night squeaks, 540. light-ups



52+ Family Photos in 2014

Here they are, all in one place. I found this to be a meaningful and worthwhile endeavor this year. Many thanks to my crew, especially my husband, for having a good attitude about this project. I will treasure these always.

One photo a week of our family throughout the year. 52/52


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“When the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit,  whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.” Titus 3:4-7

521. #2 singing “Baby It’s Cold Outside” like a monster, 522. sunny day at the pier/aquarium, 523. my two favorite christmas presents – a bluetooth speaker and pink slippers, 524. theo peanut butter cups, 525. my trusty smoothie recipe, 526. a warm home, 527. new light over the sink, 528. a peaceful NYE, 529. new goals, 530. a whole new year of adventures to come