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For months, your bridesmaids have given their time and resources to help make your wedding day special. When your big day finally arrives, don’t forget to acknowledge them! From sterling silver rings to decadent chocolates, there are many ways to say thank you to the ladies in your bridal party. Try one of these easy-to-love gift ideas to let your bridesmaids know how much you appreciate them:
Gemstone jewelry. Gemstone jewelry that displays your wedding colors can serve both as a lovely accent to a bridesmaid’s wedding day ensemble and a gorgeous reminder of her part in your special day. If you’re one of the increasing number of brides who are sporting silver engagement rings with colored gemstones, you may even be able to find a piece of silver gemstone jewelry for the members of your bridal party that coordinates with the ring on your left hand.
An activity. Giving an experience is a meaningful way to say thank you, and if that experience is a dinner out or a spa treatment, it’s sure to be appreciated. Consider bestowing your bridesmaids with a gift certificate for a massage or manicure or a gift card to favorite restaurant.
A pampering kit. After months of helping you prepare for your wedding, your bridesmaids will likely appreciate a basket of goodies to help them kick back and relax. Gather items such as bubble bath, candles, a soft robe or slippers, an eye mask, lotion and a “do not disturb” sign to give them all they need to unwind.
A personalized present. Personalized gifts demonstrate that you put thought and effort into finding a gift that’s special for each of your bridesmaids, and there are thousands of products to choose from. Consider necklaces engraved with each bridesmaid’s initials, a birthstone pendant, a monogrammed compact or some personalized stationary for those who live far away,
Edible appreciation. While they say that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, gourmet goodies are usually pretty close to the hearts of most ladies as well. Consider picking up some edible delights that your bridesmaids wouldn’t normally buy for themselves, such as fancy chocolates, an assortment of flavored coffees and teas or, for those who prefer to indulge in healthier treats, a basket of exotic fruit and nuts.
Once you’ve decided what you’d like to give your bridal party, you still need to decide when you’re going to present them with these tokens of your appreciation. The rehearsal dinner is a convenient time for many brides to acknowledge their bridesmaids, but you could also present your gifts at a wedding morning brunch or when you meet for pre-wedding manicures. No matter when you choose to present your gifts, be sure to select a time when you won’t be rushed so that your bridal party will feel fully appreciated.
By acknowledging the members of your bridal party with one of these gifts, you not only show your appreciation, but also strengthen your bond with each one. Don’t let your wedding day go by without saying thanks.
Looking for a meaningful gift or a unique way to decorate your home? Consider turning an original photograph into a one-of-kind work of art at JunoPrints.com!
While many websites sell custom canvases, not all of them are of them same quality; however, JunoPrints puts quality first in a number of ways. First, they give every piece they sell a perfect gallery-grade finish, which means that their canvases are free of bumps, bulges and bubbles. Cleanly wrapped corners create a look that’s fit for a museum, and perfect for your home or the home of someone you love.
Secondly, JunoPrints’ canvases are crafted to last. They’re printed on archival-grade canvas with UV-resistant ink, and are designed to endure for the long haul. They won’t warp and their colors will stay true for a century if they’re properly cared for, giving the images printed on them a sense of timelessness. In addition, each one is wrapped over a high-quality 1¼” frame, for a piece that’s far from flimsy. When you want to preserve a memory for a lifetime, these prints are a wonderful way to go.
As a bonus, when you purchase one of these canvases, you won’t need purchase anything else to hang it. Each one comes with a solid backing and the mounting hardware you’ll need to turn any wall from drab to fabulous.
Available in a range of sizes, from 10″ x 10″ to 32″ x 48″, these custom canvases can be used to give any room—from dorm room to board room—a sense of personality and style. And, with prices starting at just $25, JunoPrints gives anyone looking to decorate their home or office on a budget a valuable tool. Consider using a small canvas to brighten up a tiny office or breakfast nook, placing a large canvas in your living room as a statement piece or combining a number of related prints to form a collage.
Ordering a custom canvas is easy! You can import a picture directly from Instagram or from your computer or phone, and the possibilities are almost endless. From a snapshot of your puppy that makes you smile to a picture of the beach that you took on vacation to a photo from your wedding day, you can capture each memory on canvas. In addition, it’s not too early to start thinking about Christmas gifts for those you love, and a custom canvas from JunoPrints is a personalized present that’s sure to be appreciated much more than another sweater or necktie.
If you’re nervous about ordering a custom canvas online, you can rest assured that if you order from JunoPrints, you won’t be stuck with a print unless you’re fully satisfied. They offer a 30-day money-back guarantee and will refund 100 percent of the price of your canvas if you’re unhappy with it in any way.
The best thing about JunoPrints may be that it allows just about anyone to express their creative side, turning personal photos into art. You don’t need to be artsy to create a great-looking custom canvas.
It’s quite often these days that I hear people readily denouncing internet dating as a viable option for meeting one’s soul mate. Many such denouncements revolve around the inorganic nature of dating websites; people think that in patently seeking love we hinder our chances of finding it in a natural environment. Below is a list of five further reasons of just why that is.
- Over 40 Million Users
In the United States alone, there are over 40 million users of online dating sites. The chances of finding a great personal match within that enormous pool is understandably high.
With most sites sorting matches out by a variety of different metrics, including religious values, the chances of finding a similarly devout Christian match is also increased significantly.
- The Internet is used for Everything These Days As social media websites have unequivocally changed the landscape of societal norms over the last two decades, online dating follows a natural trend, and is no more taboo than Facebook or any of the other commonplace social sites. And if these other social venues are a concern as they relate to how you may be perceived by online dating site users, there are plenty of great companies that one can employ to help you build, or to help you repair your online reputation and get you into the social mix in no time.
Twenty percent of all relationships begin online, with twelve percent of marriages stemming from online dating sites as well. These numbers have been increasing at pretty unbelievable rates considering the amount of time they’ve been around, and will surely continue to increase in the future. Why not be one among the growing percentage to find happiness?
- It Doesn’t Take Long to Begin On most sites you can sign up and have a profile ready in just a couple hours or less. How many countless hours or even days have you spent seeking just one potential relationship-worthy counterpart in the analog world? With internet dating you have immediate access to millions of potential matches virtually instantly.
- It’s Considerably Cheap and Painless Depending on the site, you can expect to pay roughly $100 – $150 over the course of six months for a membership. In those months, you not only get the chance to view millions of potential matches, but you also don’t have the added stress of going on blind dates and spending hundreds more for nothing. You’ll already know things about any dates you choose to meet in person, which will eliminate some of those awkward first-date silences and give you some great conversation points.
Online dating shouldn’t be perceived as an evil enterprise. Rather, it should be considered as another helpful, and potentially game-changing tool in seeking and finding one of God’s greatest gifts to mankind: true love.
Marriage was established by God, and His divine design for marriage beautifully reflects His love for us. However, marriage brings together two imperfect people. All of us have a natural tendency toward selfishness, and when two individuals who seek their own interests come together, conflicts often arise. Christian marriage counseling helps couples deal with these conflicts and the issues that cause them from a biblical perspective.
Every couple disagrees, argues and hits bumps in the road; these minor stresses are like exercise for a muscle, making a relationship stronger as husbands and wives resolve these conflicts as one. However, repeated or acute clashes, like too much weight for a muscle, can cause injury to a marriage and even sever one. Continual avoidance of problems can have this same detrimental effect. Christian marriage counseling helps couples work through the issues that threaten to harm or have already caused injury to the marriage relationship.
Christian marriage counseling differs from other marriage counseling in this it’s based in biblical principles as well as psychology. A session may include prayer and the utilization of Scripture, though counseling styles vary depending on the type of counseling professional and the issues you’re seeking to address.
Seeking Christian marriage counseling is a proactive step toward improving your relationship so that it’s more like the divine design for marriage. Through Christian marriage counseling, couples can address the challenges they’re facing and the issues that often underscore them. Common issues that couples tackle with a Christian counselor include:
- Unrealistic or unvoiced expectations
- Financial disagreements
- Unresolved conflict
- Lack of communication
- Divergent goals
If your marriage could benefit from Christian marriage counseling, your first step is to find a Christian counselor you both trust and feel comfortable talking to. Your pastor or another member of your church’s leadership team may be able to offer recommendations. Counselors of any specialty will also be very likely to have a name or two they could pass along from their professional networks. You could also ask another couple that you know benefitted from a therapist.
Several types of professionals offer Christian marriage counseling; they include licensed professional counselor (LPC), licensed marriage and family therapist (LMFT), licensed clinical social worker (LCSW), psychologist and psychiatrist. Many other unlicensed counselors also offer Christian marriage counseling; while some offer helpful advice, there’s no guarantee of their training or expertise.
Several website offer helpful databases of Christian counselors. The National Association of Christian Counselors’ website (www.ncca.org) allows you to search for a counselor from among their members by zip code and lists each member’s areas of expertise, and the American Association of Pastoral Counselors’ website (www.aapc.org) offers a variety of search options.
When considering a counselor, ask questions about their approach to Christian marriage counseling, what a typical session is like and if they have experience in helping couples with the specific issues you’re facing. By finding a Christian counselor that you trust and who’s equipped to come alongside you, you’re making an investment in making your marriage all God designed it to be.
Did you know that Canvas on Demand (www.canvasondemand.com) can turn a treasured photo into a one-of-a-kind canvas work of art? Just send them any picture—from a snapshot of your favorite feline to a cherished photo of your grandparents’ wedding—and they’ll print it on canvas, creating an eye-catching piece of art for your home or a unique, personalized gift.
Canvas on Demand lets you choose from several finishing options, including several styles and two sizes of gallery wrapping—how the canvas is stretched over a frame. Or, select one their floating frames in four finishes or their four styles of premium frames.
Canvas on Demand offers several options to enhance your photos for at no extra charge, including:
- Converting color photos to black and white or sepia.
- Simple retouching, including removing red eye and balancing color.
Addition options offered for an extra fee include:
- Retouching, from removing a pimple to restoring a torn photo.
- Pixel painting, which gives your photo the look of a traditional oil painting. Canvas on Demand doesn’t use a filter to create this effect, however. Their artists create each one by hand using a specialized tablet and stylus.
- Creating PhotoSplits, which turn a single photograph into a multi-panel grouping.
Have several pictures you’d like to turn into canvas and want to save a few dollars? Canvas on Demand has wall display options that will set you back 20 percent less than if you bought each canvas separately. They also partner with Picture Evolution, which can create a collage of many photos to be printed on a single canvas.
Prices range from $59.00 for an 8”x10” canvas with a thin gallery wrap to $540.00 for a 40”x60” canvas with a floating frame, including complimentary retouching and hanging hardware. Sign up for their email newsletter and you’ll receive information about promotions and deals.
Canvas on Demand has a charitable side, too. They’re trying to give away a thousand $100 gift certificates to charitable organizations across North America to auction off at fundraising events. If you’re involved in a non-profit organization or have been positively impacted by one, you can fill out an application on their behalf at cool.canvasondemand.com/category/donation.
While it will cost a bit more than getting prints made at your local drugstore, a canvas work of art from Canvas on Demand elevates your photos to a new level. Consider them the next time you’re looking for a meaningful gift or a unique way to preserve a memory.
The Bible has a lot to say about love—the word “love” is mentioned nearly 500 times in the New King James version of the Bible. Love is shown to be selfless and forgiving, from the passages about love from God to those concerning love for others to expressions of love between a man and a woman. Here are 10 Bible quotes on love (taken from the New King James Version), starting with a classic that describes what how love is acted out in day-to-day life.
10 Bible Quotes on Love
1. “Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” – I Corinthians 13:4-7
2. “But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.” – I John 3:17-18
3. “And above all things have fervent love for one another, for ‘love will cover a multitude of sins.’” – I Peter 4:8
4. “Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers all sins.” – Proverbs 10:12
5. “My beloved is mine, and I am his.” – Song of Solomon 2:16a
6. “Many waters cannot quench love, nor can the floods drown it. If a man would give for love all the wealth of his house, it would be utterly despised.” – Song of Solomon 8:7
7. “Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another.” – Romans 12:9-10
8. “Then one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, and saying, ‘Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?’
“Jesus said to him, ‘”You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.” This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”’” – Matthew 22:35-59
9. “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” – John 13:34
10. “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.” – John 15:13
These 10 Bible quotes on love from the Bible are just a snapshot about what the Bible says about love. Scripture contains a wealth of practical advice on loving others the way God loves us.
The issue of whether or not we, as Christians, should date non-Christians presents major obstacles to some of us striving to live ideal Christian lives. For single Christians, or for those of in a relationship with a non-Christian and pondering on what to do for the best, Scripture should always be the first place to seek advice.
Paul states his belief very clearly. ‘Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness?’ (2 Cor 6:14)
There’s no room for doubt left here but is it that simple in contemporary society?
Why do we sometimes fall for people we feel we shouldn’t? If we do, is it a sin?
There’s no problem with having non-Christian friends. Jesus urged us to ‘Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven’. (Matthew 5:16). Being ourselves, showing the joy our faith brings to our lives only reflects positively on Christianity. Who knows, that shining light may lead more people to Jesus.
So at what point do you take a step further and discuss your beliefs with someone who you have feelings for?
Only you can make that call but the earlier in a burgeoning relationship you explore your faith, the better. Putting off the inevitable may cause problems further down the line.
‘Jesus said to him, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment’’ (Matt 22:37-38)
Do we compromise that commandment by becoming romantically involved with a non-Christian? Do we place a barrier between ourselves and God?
If we don’t wish to preach to them or enforce our views, we risk a chasm developing as our Christian life becomes a completely separate entity from our relationship. Yet, therein lies a problem. As Christians we are called to be Christians at all times; our faith isn’t something that can be put into a box and taken out when it’s ‘safe’.
By tempering our faith do we not diminish it?
Do we live in hope that one day they will become Christians too and everything will be ‘right’?
Paul cautions ‘But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned’ (1 Cor 2:14).
The issue of Christians dating non-Christians is highly emotive. Some of us may be aware of couples where the relationship works well where one is a non-believer. Equally, some may be able to cite examples to the contrary.
Throw into the mix the clear statement that we become ‘one flesh’ when we marry (Mark 10:7) and we’re adding to the minefield.
It’s also another matter completely if you and your spouse were both non-Christians when you first married but one of you has converted since. Here, the Bible is very clear.
‘But to the rest I, not the Lord, say: If any brother has a wife who does not believe, and she is willing to live with him, let him not divorce her. And a woman who has a husband who does not believe, if he is willing to live with her, let her not divorce him. For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband; otherwise your children would be unclean, but now they are holy. But if the unbeliever departs, let him depart; a brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases. But God has called us to peace. For how do you know, O wife, whether you will save your husband? Or how do you know, O husband, whether you will save your wife?’ (1 Cor 7:12-16)
The delicate issue of whether or not we should date (or marry) non-Christians is highly personal. Equally, our relationship with God is personal, the intimate details are known only to us and to God. For those grappling with just such a dilemma, all we can do is take it to Him, read the Scriptures, listen to His calling, pray and be as sure as we can that our conscience is clear and our heart at ease before God.
If only it were that simple.
The internet is teaming with retailers that sell jewelry, but finding the best jewelry stores on the web can be a bit tricky. Here are seven online jewelers that made our list of the best places to buy jewelry online:
Apples of Gold specializes in fine gold jewelry, wedding rings, diamond jewelry and gemstone jewelry, all sold at an average of 40 percent less than retail prices. Apples of Gold is unique in that they offer not only jewelry staples, but also pieces that are a little out of the ordinary, unusually stunning or hard to find, as well as a wide selection of Christian jewelry and personalized pieces. They offer free shipping on all orders and are committed to excellent customer service. They also maintain an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau.
Max & Chloe offers an extensive selection of both fashion and fine jewelry from a long list of designers. They offer pieces for nearly any occasion, including personalized jewelry, bridal jewelry, silver jewelry and pearl jewelry.
The name “Swarovski” is synonymous with crystals in many people’s minds. The Swarovski website showcases necklaces, bracelets, rings, charms, earrings and other jewelry; all feature their signature crystals, in styles ranging from Hello Kitty to the ultimate of sophistication. Prices start at below $100, and the site offers free standard shipping for orders of more than $95.
eWatches sells over 50 of the most famous watch brands such as Seiko, Citizen and Swiss Army, offering low prices, free shipping on every order and a 30-day guarantee. Their daily, “beat the clock” and “one hour watch” deals provide opportunities to purchase watches at deeper discounts than their everyday reasonable prices.
Pictures on Gold creates high-quality photo lockets, pendants and charms as well as a wide selection of personalized jewelry. Just send them a picture and they’ll laser engrave it in color, resulting in a unique keepsake. Or, choose from their thumbprint, religious or other custom pieces.
Something Silver offers a wide selection of high-quality silver jewelry, from basic to trendy, at reasonable prices. They feature styles from over 50 national and international designers as well as pieces from artists of the American northwest, and offer inspirational and Celtic jewelry in addition to the basics.
The best jewelry stores online could be the best jewelry stores, period. Check out one of our picks the next time you’re shopping for just about any kind of jewelry.
Although a love note or love letter is something that touches the heart of men and women alike, this post is for the men. We men have a much harder time, generally speaking of course, expressing our affections verbally to the ladies in our lives, and words have an effect on women that is much more powerful than on men. Because our mouths won’t always for the right words and we don’t say the the things they want to hear often enough, knowing how to write a love note well can be something that will help to rejuvenate your relationship and express the things that we think in the back of our manly and sometimes thick heads.
Knowing how to write a love note is not ingrained in most men as a natural skill like it is in women, although traditionally the love note or love letter is a man-to-woman expression, due to the poor verbal talents we sometimes have. “Mmm hmm”, and “yep” are not especially romantic responses, but it’s how we usually respond to things. We are here to give you some guidance on how to write a love note that will hopefully give your relationship a little upward mobility.
First, an effective love note is not a four page letter that goes into excessive details on every aspect of your relationship. You are writing a note, not a business plan. Think of it as a summary instead of a full description. A few effective lines is much more powerful than a page or two.
Make sure that you compliment them specifically on something. One of the most important aspects of learning how to write a love note is being specific without being too specific. In other words, you want to mention something that matters without getting hung up on it and writing too much. For instance, telling her “I can’t tell you in words how special it makes me feel every time you hold my hand when we are out somewhere. I know everyone we pass is looking and thinking how lucky I am, and that is exactly what I think too.” This may not be perfect, but it’s the right idea. Short, sweet, to the point.
Tell them what kind of a difference they make in your life. Let them know that without them you would be incomplete. These things make a difference, and you should feel this way about them if you really love them. Recall a memory that you shared, whether it was a recent private moment or a vacation that was special from years ago. Memories can evoke powerful emotions. Put a date on the top – they may keep it for a long time and go back to read it over and over.
Finally, in learning how to write a love note the closing is all important, just as in any type of writing. You don’t want to spend time telling her how beautiful she is, or how she completes you, or that you can hardly think of what to do next when she isn’t around, just to end with something like “I’ll see you tonight.” Dud. Wasted time. End with something powerful. “My future only exists because you are in it.” That’s not too shabby. “I can’t wait to get my arms around you again.” Pretty good. Make sure you leave her wanting to read more, and being sure of how you feel.
Romance is a word that has been used in society by different people for different views on the subject of love. Love and romance are often used in the same context or the same sentence to describe the same thing, but in fact they are not the same thing at all, though there is a relation between them. The definition of romance according to the dictionary is “ardent emotional attachment or involvement between people; a love affair”. This confuses and intermingles the words “love” and “romance” a bit too much, and has led to a mindset that is harmful to many relationships, because it causes people to think that without that “special feeling” all the time that they are not in love anymore.
To get a better understanding, we should look at how “love” is used from ancient languages which have much more nuanced meanings for most words than English does today. The definition of romance should probably be something more like “special time taken by two people who are in love to concentrate specifically on their relationship”.
In Greek, love has several different versions and meanings. These are evident in many ancient writings, but most notably in the Bible. In the Bible the two most common uses of love are agape, meaning unconditional love, and phileo, meaning friendship or companionship. The other two Greek terms for love are eros, which is the romantic version, and storge, which is affection or fondness through familiarity. If you were to place them in order of importance or strength of bond, they would fall with agape being the most important, followed by eros, phileo, and storge. Eros most closely relates to the definition of romance, bu it is agape that is the most important and should hold precedence in a marriage or relationship.
The Bible never mentions the term eros, and since it is considered to be the most important writing in history, that is worth noting. Even in the Song of Solomon, which is a romantic poem written between husband and wife, agape is used as the definition of romance. Agape means the kind of love that is unshakable, unconditional, and never changes regardless, and when we are talking about romance, it is often just a feeling, or a “high” that comes and goes as conditions change. God loves us with an agape love, and this is the kind of relationship we should strive for as well. Eros should really be incorporated into human agape love as a part of it and not a separate type.
We have to remember and re-introduce the idea into society that love is and action, not a feeling. This is where the definition of romance muddles things. People today think that they have to always feel warm and fuzzy about someone to be in love with them, but that is not realistic regardless of what movies and books try to tell us. To have a healthy and real romantic relationship requires a commitment, with love being a verb that you do over and over, not reducing it to just sex but to every action, thought, and word between you and you loved one. When you truly love someone, it is apparent in your behaviors, whether you are “feeling” the romance or not.