Wednesday, September 2, 2009

The Other Mama's Birthday Bash- Day 4- A Basket of Hope Giveaway

This giveaway is now closed. Random.org chose commenter #55- Kera from the Honea Bees. Congrats, Kera! I'll e-mail you with all the info! So excited for you!

You know I was a cheerleader, right?

HA_93_cheerleaders

A high-ponytail-wearing, short-skirt-flaunting, dater of jocks. And while we cheerleader types might have a negative stereotype in almost every single teen movie, we really aren’t that bad. One thing I learned as a cheerleader was to never let go of hope.

On rainy fall Friday nights, we could have been down by 42 points in the 4th quarter, but our squad would still cheer, “We’ve got spirit, yes we do, we’ve got spirit, how ‘bout you?” to the 12 parents left in the stadium. We giggled the whole way through it, but we never gave up. There was always a chance for a comeback.

After some adventurous party days in college, I felt drawn to a certain group of girls in my sorority {yes, I am that girl, too} who knew God. They were so cute, spunky and knew how to have fun- just pure fun- and they had a sparkle in them that I wanted. While I had always grown up in church and knew about God, I didn’t know Him personally. I slowly took those first steps to learning to love God, to love His Word and to know {and hopefully know how to emulate} His personality.

I go through peaks and valleys {like I think most people do} in my relationship with Jesus, but one thing that remains constant in my outlook is hope. I think some people mistake it as happiness, optimism or a glass-half-full view of life- and those things are great bi-products- but Hope is knowing that there is a God in control; knowing- with complete confidence- that God has the best things in your life already penned.
He is The Creator, The Sustainer and The Redeemer. You just need to stick with, follow, lean on and rely in Him to get through the bumps.

My trouble spot is worry. Anybody else? I get caught in spirals some days of worrying that my sweet hubs will die on the way to work or that one of my children will be critically ill or I will never be able to get it all done. {That last one is true, so I might as well go ahead and quit worrying about it.}

I believe worry is genetic and I come from a long line of worriers. I’ve learned, though, when lured into that slippery slope to say out loud, “God, take this worry from me. I know You will work it out so that You will be glorified”. PERIOD. And I mentally walk away from it. And it’s hard and takes practice, but it releases my mind from the worry and fear.

I’ve always prayed, but I recently have heard {twice in one week},
“If you worry, why pray? And if you pray, why worry?”

There you have it. Simple enough for me to understand.
I know the Boss and He’s got my back.

So, as I turn 31 today, I’m going to pray to have a year full of turning it all over to God.
A year full of fewer worries and more trust.
A year that is full of laughter, love and just pure fun- with you: my friends and family.
A year to live out hope in attitude, decisions and faith.

You can have hope and a chance for a comeback, too. Wanna come along?
I’ve still got a good cheer or two up my sleeve, but I hate to tell you that my hurkey is gone… so gone. My ponytail is much lower, though, so I think that makes me tolerable. Most days.

: : : : : : :
For anyone who loves hope or needs hope some days, today’s giveaway is for you!
I’m so excited to share so many great and inspirational prizes with you today!

Today's giveaway is a Basket of Hope from some of my favorite people!

* First is my friend Holley Gerth’s 40 Day Devotional Rain on Me.

Rain on Me

Holley writes for Dayspring {Hallmark’s Christian line of cards}, writes a blog {Heart to Heart with Holley} and manages the wonderful (in)Courage website. Smart girl, dontcha think? And she also happens to be warm and funny, too- my favorite traits.

Here is an excerpt from her devotional:

HOPE is more than just a word—
it’s a state of being.
It’s a firm belief
that even if you don’t know how,
even if you don’t know when,
God will come through
and better days are ahead.
Life sends rain...
Hope dances in the puddles
until the sun comes out again.
Rain on Me by Holley Gerth

I love it! I know you will, too!

* Next in the package includes several things from the Layne James store on Etsy. Everyone loves Etsy because it supports and encourages hand made items, but I specifically love this store because my friend from high school, Lydia is the owner! {Lydia also writes a wonderful blog called Being Particular.} She has generously offered one hand-stitched cross bookmark

LJ Giveaway crosses for Other Mama

and a choice of one adorable pillow.

LJ Giveaway pillow for Other Mama (2) (2)

Her grandmother makes the pillows; aren't they amazing?! What a blessing to be able to work with your grandmother!

Lydia also wants to extend a 15% off discount in her shop to anyone who uses the code OTHERMAMA at checkout. How fun! I can't believe I'm a code!!

* Last but not least, I am adding a new Bible for you to enjoy.

Books of the Bible

Sometimes, even if you have a wonderful written in, worn and used Bible, you need and new perspective. This Bible is called The Books of the Bible and is written like The Message {in modern words and without chapters and verse numbers}. What's different about this one is that it's laid out chronologically for you to better understand the flow of the books. More information is available at the International Bible Society website {the publisher} if you are interested, like I am. Our good friend Larry {who also leads our Sunday School class} introduced me to this recently and I'm enjoying it. It's like reading a novel!

So a great basket to one lucky winner out there: A devotional, a cross bookmark, a pillow and a new Bible!

You knew it was coming, right? There have to be rules. I'll make them tiny this time, though.
To enter to win:
* Leave a comment in the comments section. You don't HAVE to say Happy Birthday, but it IS my birthday and all. :)
To do this, click the word "COMMENTS" directly below this post. Then type in the big blank section on the top right and click Publish Your Comment. Easy peasy.
* You have to leave your e-mail address with your comment. If you know your e-mail is attached to your Blogger account, then that's fine, too. Want to do this and don't know how? Read my quick tutorial on it here.
* One entry per comment.
* But you can gain another entry by becoming a blog follower and then leaving a comment to tell me so. If you already follow this blog, then you can click for another comment to let me know that. Please read my view of becoming a blog follower and what it is if you have any questions.
* Or you can Tweet about this giveaway and reference the post and leave a comment to tell me you did. I'm @theothermama and Holley is @(in)courage just FYI.
* Or you can write about it on your blog and link to this post and leave a comment to tell me you did. {WOW that's FOUR ways to enter!!} {And a max of 4- not 4 per day.}
* One winner will be chosen at random on Sunday at noon and will be notified via e-mail.
* Please let me know if you have any questions at all about entering.
* Each giveaway is separate, so if you entered Monday's great Homemade Gourmet giveaway, Tuesday's awesome Lisa Leonard giveaway or Wednesday's exciting Design Chicky giveaway, you need to also enter this one separately. The Homemade Gourmet giveaway will close today at noon {CST- God's time}, so I hope you got in! The other giveaways are still open until, so head on over there and sign up, if you haven't already!

Have a fantastic and wonderful day on my birthday! Thanks again for playing along. I am having an amazing birthday week with you!

84 comments:

Lori said...

Happy Birthday, Hillary! Hope you have a stellar day. :)

Lori said...

PS - I'm a follower!

BASSakward Tales said...

happy birthday hillary...hope it is a great one...my email is ginbsw@yahoo.com

BASSakward Tales said...

and i am faithful follower...your blog is much funnier than mine...maybe that is why people acutally read yours! :)

Carrie said...

Happy, Happy Birthday! Love ya!

Carrie said...

And you know I follow! ;-)

Darby said...

Hillary, I'm way behind on my blog reading... Happy Birthday and SIGN me up!!!

Katie said...

Yay! Birthday Greetings and Wishes to you! We can all use some hope. Beautful post.

Katie said...

Following!

Stacy K said...

Have a FABULOUS Birthday! Mine is in 2 weeks! Can't wait! And, can I add a wonderful giveaway! I am going to check on that Bible right now! kattness@hotmail.com

stephanie garcia said...

Hillary, this is my first visit to your blog. Thanks for sharing your heart. And Happy Birthday to you!!

Gray Matters said...

Happy Birthday, friend. It is indeed a very special day!

Ivy said...

Happy, Happy Birthday!!!!! Hope you have a great day:)

CL said...

This has been so much fun! Happy Birthday Hillary! Hope you have a great day!!

CL said...

And I follow you! ; )

CL said...

And I blogged about it!

Kelley said...

Happy Birthday new "She Speaks" sister. Hope your day rocks!
kusmith@hiwaay.net

Ashley said...

Happy Birthday Hillary!

Michelle said...

Hil, it's an amazing gift to find a way to celebrate your life by celebrating the one who gave it to you! You are an amazing witness and your faith is inspirational to all of those who are blessed to call you family or friend. Hope 31 is all you imagined and all God planned it to be! Happy, happy birthday!

Michelle said...

BTW... I have been a faithful follower since the day I read the first post! Thanks for the laughter and the diversion!!

Lauren said...

Happy Birthday! I NEED a basket of hope!

laurenhbeck (at) yahoo.com

Lauren said...

I'm a follower too!

laurenhbeck (at) yahoo.com

annieck said...

Happy birthday, my sweet and hilarious friend! What a great post! You offer so much hope and encouragement. I love your prayer for your life over the next year. I prayed the prayer for you as well, and I have faith that this is going to be a great year for you!

annieck said...

loyal follower. :)

Amanda said...

Happy Happy Birthday! Hope you have a wonderful day!

Mandy Lassiter West said...

Happy Birthday to my grand little. (if we are bringing up sorority life in today's blog, might as well go with the flow!) You make me smile every day with this blog!
e-mail is mandywest@knology.net

Jamie said...

Happy, Happy Birthday from one former cheerleader to another!

Jamie said...

Happily following!

Rachel said...

Love this post and love you birthday girl!

Rachel
rwaters06@gmail.com

Melissa said...

Happy Birthday!!!! I am a worrier too, so your post today was very encouraging!

Tricia said...

Happy Birthday!

I am glad I stopped by. I like your examples of hope. Especially the cheerleader.:)

Paige said...

I am loving your flashbacks this week. I think we would have been friends in high school! :) In fact, my nickname is pollypep because of my cheerleadery type of personality (given to me long ago by my mom). My email is even pollypep@gmail.com!

Hope your day rocks!!!!

Laura said...

Great post, Hill, and Happy Birthday! From a fellow worrier, I could use a basket of hope, so I am officially entering. I remind myself of a quote similar to the one you mention...."Anxiety is a lack of faith, and faith is a lack of anxiety." I try to remind myself that a lot! Thanks for sharing your wonderful words. Oh, and in that cheerleader photo, I have a fun fact for you: I am not wearing shoes. I can't remember why I didn't have them, but I am the only shoeless cheerleader. Happy Day!

mary bailey said...

Happy Birthday, Hillary! I love how you are celebrating YOU, the person who God created you to be, for the entire week. I'm a firm believer in birthWEEKs instead of just birthDAYs! Thanking for sharing your joy of the Lord with us.

I'm also a follower!

Tricia said...

I don't follow, because it is overwhelming to have all that stuff coming at me on my dashboard. But I do choose to list blogs I read in the sidebar and read them every time they update. I did that with you. Not sure if it counts, but I thought I would give it a shot. :)

Jenny said...

You're such a nice person. I hope you have a glorious birthday filled with your favorite things and lots of love!!!

Jenny said...

And I'm still a follower. :)

Eve said...

Happy Birthday, Hillary!!!
I LOVE the quote about worrying and praying. So true...I need to remember it every day.

Eve said...

I'm a follower!

Brandi said...

Aw, look how cute you are! I am a big worrier. . . and "turning it over" to Him is a great comfort. I do worry a lot less. Still working on it a bit though. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! :)

The Incredible Shrinking Woman said...

YOU MUST HAVE A WONDERFILLED DAY after all this prep work. Seriously, I am fully expecting Publishers Clearing house to walk up and knock on your door. That would be perfection. Well, not perfection, but I'm not sure Jesus would come down with a huge check in His hands. He's very busy keeping me out of trouble today. Sorry, didn't know I'd be booking Him for today until it was too late!
Anyhoo, HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY to you!!!!

Unreasonable Grace said...

On your question about worry ...

I am the queen worry-wort. I know it's wrong. I know it shows a lack of faith and trust.

Some of the best advice one of my spiritual "moms" gave me is: lay your worries down at the foot of the cross. If you pick it back up again, you can return it to Him at any time, and as many times as necessary. He doesn't mind.

So, I guess I am making progress if I lay it down at His feet ... even if it is repeatedly.

kim

Unreasonable Grace said...

how cool! I just realized that I can enter AGAIN! I'm a follower ... er... well, you know what I mean.
Kim

Unreasonable Grace said...

No, I'm not entering THREE times.

I was too quick to hit the publish button and forgot to tell you:

Happy Birthday!

(I know, I'm late. but worth waiting for.)

kim

mary bailey said...

Oh! I didn't post AGAIN to say I'm a blog follower! I AM. I just didn't read your directions very carefully!

April said...

Happy Birthday, Hillary! Hope 31 is great!

The Incredible Shrinking Woman said...

Just realized I had not become a follower yet! SORRY!!!!!!! What the heck kind of a friend am I? Feel free to smack me through the screen if you want. I won't be offended!

BTW, I was number 100...do I win a prize for doing that? lol

Dawn said...

i hope you are celebrating and having a wonderful birthday! i love your birthday hope list... so much better than a wish list :)

Anonymous said...

O.K. Hillary...Thanks for the confession of worry about your family's safety, health, etc. I do it too! I constantly worry about John coming home from work in crazy Rideout traffic or my babes having some horrible illness. Sometimes when I start those worries, I remember that GOD is in CONTROL and if something were to happen, GOD alone would/will help me deal with anything. Would love all today's goodies. I hope today is most excellent!

Mel

Anonymous said...

Hillary,
May God bless you as you have blessed all those whose lives you have touched! "The fruit of the Spirit is Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self-Control"....Galatians 5:22-23
I love & miss you on your b'day.! Mom

trimadsco said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY! I hope it's a wonderful day for you!
Tricia
(trimadsco@yahoo.com)

trimadsco said...

PS - and I'm a follower!
Tricia
(trimadsco@yahoo.com)

LeAnne said...

Happy Birthday, Hillary!!!! for your birthday, i want the giveaway!

LeAnne said...

and you know i'm following.

Lydia said...

I'm not entering the giveaway for obvious reasons, but I wanted to wish you a HUGE Happy Birthday today! Hope you are having a fabulous day! And thanks for letting me help sponsor your giveaway today!

The HoneaBees said...

Happy Birthday!!
Awesome giveaways this week!!
sisterbug@bellsouth.net

The HoneaBees said...

Right behind you too...

Norma said...

Hillary, I enjoyed your blog today on hope. Personally if I didn't have faith and hope (I believe the two go hand in hand)I don't think I'd survive a day in this world. Thanks, today was great.

In Him, Norma

Norma said...

PS HAPPY , HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU!!!

Donna said...

HAPPY HAPPY birthday Hill! Your blog has gotten out of control big! You are amazing at EVERYTHING you ever try. You remind me of a Sarah Palin- the kind of woman who can be awesome at work, creativity, looking good and keeping a home and not seem frazzled one bit. P.S. I still love those uniforms for cheerleading. And the 1990 picture is "Hill"-arious. LOVE YOU- HAPPY HAPPY 29th (remember- we go backwards after 30). :) Love, DTA

amykat said...

Happy Birthday (again)!!!

mary bailey said...

I linked to you on my blog! Can you tell I really, really like today's basket of goodies? And I really, really want you enjoy your special day!

We 3 Taylors said...

Happy birthday Hillary! So sad that you won't be in charge of Camp Invention anymore, but enjoy reading your blog. Posted a photo on our blog of Jacoby at Camp Invention wearing the t-shirt you sent him :o) Thanks again! My email is: taylorec@gm.sbac.edu

Anonymous said...

You are sucha a blessing! You deserve a fabulous day/week/year!
Tonya
tonyanlang@bellsouth.net

Amy Kennedy said...

Happy Birthday, Hillary!! Hope it's been great for you!

Rachel Olsen said...

I'm so sorry, Hillary. So deeply sorry. Surely they could've come up with some other option. Maybe something solid color and circular. Or something pleated even. I'm so sorry they made you wear that gigham cheer skirt. Nobody's hips look good in gingham!

Happy Birthday, dear one!!! May all your skirts look good on you this year - and may you not worry about it if they don't.

~ Former Cheerleader Rachel

Beth said...

As always... lovin reading up on the blog. Hope you had a great birthday!

Beth said...

I'm a follower now, too. Does my fb status from a few weeks ago carry over for another entry? :-)

Kim said...

Hope you had a great day!

Kim said...

still following... :)

Kim said...

and just tweeted...

Donnamo said...

hAPPY bIRTHDAY....i JUST BECAME A FOLLOWER....IF i SHOULD WIN i WANT MY PRIZE TO GO TO MARY bAILEY @

WWW.BELLWHISTLEMOON.BLOGSPOT.COM

Kelli said...

Hey Hillary,

I hope you had a fantastic birthday! Mine is tomorrow and I'm very excited :)

This post really spoke to me - ever since my father passed away unexpectedly 3 years ago, leaving my mom with three grown children and three very young children as well, I have been plagued with worry for my loved ones. I am sometimes consumed with thoughts of "what if?" I think it drives my husband crazy sometimes but he is mostly understanding.

It has only been with realizations of God's control over everything that happens that I have been able to relax and enjoy life more fully. I am mostly okay now, but every now and again I need reminders that I have a direct way to talk to God at all times so there is no need to worry!

SO... thank you for your post! It was just the reminder I needed!

Kelli said...

And of course, I'm a follower!

Sabrina said...

Still following!

Sabrina said...

Following ya!

Sabrina said...

That last comment should have been count me in for the giveaway.

Jen said...

I needed that encouragement a year ago!! Happy Birthday! Not sure if my email's attached so it's luvtoteachu2@yahoo.com

Jen said...

Ps. I'm a follower!! Love the blog!!

Ms. Parker said...

You know I need a new book to read! I love the idea of this bible! THANKS for telling me about it! ~S

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Hill!!! I hope it was a great one!

Mel

actg95@yahoo.com

Tina said...

This may be the best prize so far!! Hope you had a great birthday!!

Margie said...

Happy Birthday - if I win, my gift is going to Mary Bailey, too. She's so LOYAL.

Love your blog!

Mr. and Mrs. Nurse Boy said...

Happy Belsted Birthday! What a fun way to celebrate!

Mrs. Nurse Boy

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