NovelSisters

watching, reading, and writing stories

Snow Day

Growing up in central Texas means you rarely have a snow day. And even when we get a snow day, it’s usually because of ice, not snow. In face what passes for snow is usually sleet, tiny round balls of ice that don’t stick together to make anything. It can be pretty to look at, but, well it’s not snow.

But last night we got a huge surprise. It wasn’t even freezing and snow started to fall from the sky. And this wasn’t sleet, this was flaky soft snow, some of it clumping together into extra big flakes. And it didn’t stop, it just kept falling and then started to accumulate on the ground and the cars. Anything hitting pavement just melted, but it was amazing to be in the middle of an actual snow storm and see it gathering on the trees and cars and grass. I can’t remember this ever happening before in my life.

I know some people live where it snows all the time, but for this Texas girl, last night and today were something special and something I want to praise God for. It was such a blessing for me to see His handiwork in the snow and laugh with joy as I tossed snowballs at family members and opened my mouth to catch a flake on my tongue. It is a special time that I don’t want to forget. So here are a few pictures from my snow adventure. I hope you enjoy them and take time to praise God for the little blessings He gives you today.

Leave a comment »

Texas Road Trip

Over this past weekend, I got to take a road trip across a portion of the great state of Texas with my family. We drove over 1000 miles in our little gold minivan and visited some amazing places that I had never seen before. I thought I’d share some of the highlights on this blog in case anyone out there is thinking of going to West Texas sometime soon.

View from the top of Enchanted Rock

We started our trip by stopping at one of my favorite State Parks: Enchanted Rock. This natural large slab of Granite is a sight to behold, even though climbing it can be a bit strenuous and boy if you wear a hat, you better hold on to it tight, because it gets super windy up on top of the stone. But the view is great and there’s nothing like the feeling of conquering a small mountain. Plus, since it is near Fredericksburg, you can plan on picking up some fresh peaches or maybe even some peach ice cream.

Then we drove on to Balmorhea State Park to spend the night. It’s this cool little town in the middle of the desert that has natural springs that flow year round. It’s like an oasis in the hot dry land. They have turned the springs into a swimming pool for visitors of the state park. There were all sorts of fish and clear cool water to dive in and swim around. I even got to see rare Head Water Catfish that are all black and have blue eyes. My brother said it reminded him of Toothless from How to Train Your Dragon. Since there’s water, there is also a lot of wildlife in this area, in particular we saw many birds. I even got to see a hummingbird’s nest for the first time in my life. They make them out of spiderwebs. I would highly recommend stopping at this State Park, and I hope to go back sometime this winter.

Head Water Catfish that look like Toothless

From Balmorhea, we drove to Fort Davis, specifically to the Davis Mountains State Park. The McDonald Observatory is a short drive from the park and our first night there, we got to go to a star party and enjoy seeing the constellations, several planets, a galaxy and star clusters through the multiple telescopes provided. It was so much fun, and for the rest of the trip, I loved looking up at the night sky to see what I could remember from the tour. The stars in West Texas are just gorgeous, I can see so many more without the light pollution of a city and especially if you get up on a mountain, your view isn’t blocked by trees. This is one of my favorite things we did on this trip, and if you ever get the chance, I highly recommend it.

At McDonald Observatory

There were several hiking trails and a great bird watching area in the state park, and Fort Davis National Park was also a short drive away. I wish we had more time to explore the historic structures, but the Fort closes at 5 pm everyday, so plan ahead if you decide to go. In Fort Davis itself, we found several cool little shops to explore, like an old-timey soda fountain, and an ice cream shop built into a train’s caboose. There was even a Rattlesnake museum. I was fine seeing the scaly creatures behind glass but I’m glad we didn’t run into any on our hikes. Speaking of hikes, we stopped at this random picnic sight on the drive between Fort Davis and the State Park and found an excellent place to boulder (or climb big rocks without the aid of ropes). It provided a great view of the area and was a lot of fun.

Hiking in the Davis Mountains

At Fort Davis National Park

Ice Cream from a Caboose

Bouldering

Lastly, we drove to Marfa to see if we could spot any of the mysterious lights that come out in the evenings. It would have been fun to explore Marfa itself a bit more, but most of our time was spent waiting at the observation area for the sun to set. It was a wonderful place to watch the sunset and I took a lot of pictures, but all the lights we saw in the distance were clearly car lights, so not sure if I’m a believer in the “Marfa Lights.” But it was still a fun place to go, and the sunset made it all worth it to me.

Sunset in Marfa

Well I hope you enjoyed the pictures and a glimpse into what’s out there in West Texas.

Leave a comment »

Flash from the Past

I’m not sure why, but I’ve been feeling sentimental recently and I really just want to look at some old photos. So I thought I’d share from my findings. I hope you enjoy this little glimpse into my life and history and if you think it’s a cool idea, feel free to do your own Flash from the Past on your blog or social media. Enjoy!

2008
I’m starting with this year because it’s when I first got my own digital camera, and digital photos are much easier for me to upload. This was the end of my senior year of high school and also my first semester of college.

lydia-4-08-059

My high school Senior Picture… or one of them at least.

lydia-may-august-2008-075

My Senior Formal (Prom for homeschoolers)

graduation

At my graduation party with one of my best friends Lindsey.

lydia-may-august-2008-814

My 18th Birthday with my family.

004

Making new friends in college like Victoria.

2009

lydia-sep-jan-2009-150

A ski trip to New Mexico that I went on with my Dad.

lydia-dance-2

Having fun with friends Kari and Amanda at a dance in college.

lydia-may-june-2009-061

I helped paint our house that summer.

lydia-july-2009-099

I went on a road trip from Nashvilled, TN to Austin, TX with my brothers.

december-2009-030

My Sophomore dorm room and friend Heather.

2010

january-2010-004

At my cousin’s wedding in Indiana.

march-2010-110

Going to the Rodeo with my sister.

july-2010-591

My 20th Birthday.

september-2010-065

I went to Palmetto State Park with some college friends.

october-2010-053

I got into the Alpha Chi Honor Society that fall.

december-2010-012

We decorated our college apartment for Christmas.

2011

february-2011-041

We had a snow day in February!

may-2011-022

I finally saw the Austin bats with Tracey.

199

I went to Germany with some college friends, including my roommate Victoria.

img_7926

I helped with my church’s Bible Clubs like I had for the past several summers.

img_8112

I went to a UT football game with my cousin Hannah.

img_8356

Senior Year Homecoming.

img_8588

On the TLU campus.

2012

img_9049

Ice skating with my family during winter break.

img_9572

One of my paintings for my Senior Art Show.

img_9773

Finishing my senior bucket list with my roommate by going up the chapel bell tower.

img_9882

College Graduation.

016_16

I went to the Bahamas with my family and we swam with dolphins.

img_0826

I kept painting and made this for my friend Lindsey.

img_0946

Having Fun with my family for Thanksgiving.

2013

img_1273

I tried a Cleanse and ate a lot healthier in the Spring.

img_1403

I went to the Austin Kite Festival.

img_1515

I painted a cover for my first novel.

img_1314

I got the obligatory Bluebonnet picture.

img_1855

I donated my hair to Locks of Love with my sister.

20130806-110009-dsc_6074

Haiti mission trip.

img_1622

I went to see my old roommate Victoria in Philly and we took a day trip to NYC!

img_2273

I decorated my first tree on the side of the road for Christmas.

2014

img_2375

I made a snowman, or iceman.

13235_10152264999894907_1884113350_n

My brother proposed to Ashley and we all went up to Abilene to celebrate.

img_2030

Another Bluebonnet pic with my sister.

img_2159

I was maid of honor in my friend Lindsey’s wedding.

10897099_10153006316149907_2326374960664967768_n

I got to be a bridesmaid in my brother’s wedding and I got a new sister!

img_2759

I saw Victoria for Christmas in San Antonio.

2015

img_2237

Ski trip to New Mexico with our church’s youth group.

dsc04413

In Florida for my Grandpa’s memorial service.

img_2946

We had heavy rains that spring and a lot of flooding.

dsc04684

Spring Bluebonnets with all my sisters.

dsc01270

My 25th Birthday.

img_3139

My first book fair with my novel.

img_2804

Mission trip to Mozambique.

img_3299

Going to the Trail of Lights in Austin.

2016

img_0248

I went to a Spurs Game with my cousin Hannah.

img_0356

My friend Lindsey had Bethany, her first baby.

img_0510

I got to meet Marissa Meyer, the Author of the Lunar Chronicles.

img_1058

I got to go on a backstage tour of the AT&T Center.

img_2169

I went to Kentucky to see the replica of Noah’s Ark.

img_4045

I got to see a beautiful sunset in San Diego.

 

Well I’m going to stop there. It was fun to look through old photos and see some of the cool things that have happened in my life. I want to take some time to stop and be grateful for all the places I’ve seen, people I’ve known and ways that God has shaped me and grown me over the past 9 years. I hope you take some time today to do the same.

Leave a comment »

Fun in San Diego

Well I’ve been out of town for the past week, so instead of writing a thought provoking post, I thought I’d share some of my favorite pictures from my trip to San Diego. I’d never been before and it was a lot of fun to explore the area, see the coast and the zoo and just get to spend time with family. Enjoy!

View from Mount Helix

View from Mount Helix

 

The Pacific Ocean

The Pacific Ocean

 

Seagulls at the Beach

Seagulls at the Beach

 

Sunset at Coronado

Sunset at Coronado

 

View of the Bay from the USS Midway

View of the Bay from the USS Midway

 

Bears at the Zoo

Bears at the Zoo

 

qwso8822

Exploring Old Town

4 Comments »