Quote of the Week // 50th Week

Quote of the Week - 50th Week Simply Megan Joy Blog

Jane Austen (1775-1817) was the renowned British author of Emma, Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, Mansfield Park, Northanger Abby, and more, all of which have been adapted into numerous films or tv series’. Austen died at age 41 of Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Only after her death did her literary works become popular.

It is a sad thought, but true. After years of constant life, it may seem as though we are quickly skidding across time doing many little and frivolous things of no great importance. Yes, there are moments and events that break up this feeling of continuous life and trivial tasks, but the succession of “busy nothings” we execute daily can pull us into a gloomy lull, and I think that this happens to everyone, whether we realize it or not.

My suggestion is; go back to the basics. Focus on what matters. This day, this moment. Pick the top ten things that matter to you, and stick by them. Make a list of things that matter, and another list of things that don’t, things that you could let go of for now to get back on track.

Let not our days be filled with little nothings and useless tasks, but be helpful, useful, and productive. Let’s get back to the simple basics and keep close the things that matter.

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Do you like Austen books or movies better?

Do you find that life has turned into a succession of busy nothings?

Do you plan to go back to the basics?

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Megan Joy

Quote of the Week // 49th Week

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Benjamin Franklin, born in 1706, was one of the Founding Father of the U.S. During his lifetime, he was the 6th President of Pennsylvania, the United States Minister to both Sweden and France, and the 1st United States Post Master. Besides his many more well-known inventions and experiments, he also developed a version of the glass harmonica, and founded one of the first volunteer firehouses. He died in 1790 and today is buried in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.


Good ole’ Benjamin Franklin said many wise things. This quote is certainly one of them! Preparation and failure; two terms that seem to be non-coexistent. If you have one, you don’t have the other, and visa-versa.


Taking the time for preparation is a wonderful way of earning ourselves a better chance of being successful in our tasks. In a lifetime, there are so many things to prepare for, like practicing for a piano recital, studying for an exam, packing for and routing a trip, getting ready to take a driver’s test, memorizing answers for a job interview, rehearsing for a competition, or even hosting a party. All of these things require preparation, if we wish to succeed.


Not to say that good preparation will eliminate every chance of failure because of unforeseen occurrences, but the probabilities of failure will be significantly slimmer.
While I write this, I must confess that I’m not the best example of this! Lately, I tend to think ahead to the things I need to prepare, and then quickly forget about them like they’re flower petals, fallen in a stream and floating away with the swift current. So, I write this post mostly for myself, as an attempt to help remember what ole’ Ben once said about preparation. Do you have any thoughts on preparation, or how to make it easier?


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Do you have a story of when you forgot to prepare for something?
Was there a time when you prepared well for something and it was a success?
Are you excited for Christmas?
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Megan Joy

Quote of the Week // 48th Week

Quote of the Week - 48th Week Simply Megan Joy Blog

It’s another quote by Mark Twain!

Do you speak more than one language? If you are reading this, it’s likely you speak English, but are you fluent in any other language? How long has it taken you to learn how to speak that language well? Can you converse with others in that language?
The reason I ask all these questions is to introduce an idea that “kindness” is just another form of language.

“Kindness: the quality of being friendly, generous, and considerate.”
This language is easy to learn, and everyone can speak it if they try. All it takes is some practice and then some determination to speak it in your everyday life. Speak kindness to that older lady at the grocery store who is hard of hearing, or that man who skipped ahead in the checkout line. Speak kindness to that friend who can’t seem to say anything nice or who talks behind your back.

Everyone is given the ability to speak the universal language of kindness and is offered an opportunity to speak it to others every single day. Even those who do not speak our language can understand us if we speak the language of kindness. Do we choose to speak this language to everyone? Do we make exceptions for those who are rude to us? Are we forgetting to speak this language to those who need it most? By this I mean, those who don’t expect kindness and generosity.

Because kindness is a universal language, everyone can understand it, from babies to great-grandparents. The deaf can hear it and the blind can see it; there are no exceptions to who can receive our kindness, and there are no exceptions of to whom we can give it, regardless of the person’s attitude or opinions.

Ephesians 4:32: “And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.”

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Do you speak more than one language?
Would you consider “kindness” a universal language?

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Megan Joy

P.S. Speaking of this quote, I encourage you to check out “My Blurred World,” a blog written by a legally-blind teenage girl, Elin. She tells her story and helps her readers to better understand what life is like for those without sight. Go read her latest post, “10 FAQs About Sight Loss.”

Quote of the Week // 46th Week

Quote of the Week - 46th Week Simply Megan Joy Blog

Mark Twain, the famous American writer born in November of 1835, was known for his many novels including Tom Sawyer, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and The Prince and the Pauper.  He was a strong supporter of civil rights and also of women’s suffrage. Twain is sometimes confused with “Colonel Sanders” because of his white hair and smart mustache, but I can assure you, Mark Twain never made a living out of fried chicken! Twain died in 1910 of heart failure and was buried in Elmira, New York.

Procrastination: “the action of delaying or postponing something.” We’ve all been guilty of procrastination. Schoolwork, chores, work assignments, cooking dinner, laundry; these are some of the many things that are easy to put off until later. To the human brain, it may sometimes seem that if we put something off long enough, we won’t have to do it. Unfortunately, this is not how it actually works. We put it off, and put it off, until it’s the last minute and we find ourselves scrambling to get it all done. It’s a pretty horrible feeling, one that I know all too well!

When we postpone something for too long, we end up rushing, not doing the job right, and sometimes not even finishing it at all! Although procrastination is much easier to choose at first, it makes things twice as hard for us later.

As Twain’s wise words suggest, the best way to get ahead is by just “starting.” If it’s something we know we have to do, we might as well get started, and the sooner it will be finished! Even if we don’t have time to finish it all in one sitting, we just have to start.

If there is something that you’ve been putting off this week, I am here to encourage you to begin today! It probably won’t be as bad as it seems. All you have to do is begin, and so I am not being hypocritical, I, myself, will also be starting something that I have been putting off. I will be working on a sewing project that is due in a week and will try my best to leave procrastination out of the picture, before it’s too late and I’m threading bobbins at 4am. . . again!

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Is there something that you’ve been putting off?

Do you have any advice to eliminate procrastination?

Have you read any books by Mark Twain?

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Megan Joy

Quote of the Week // 45th Week

Quote of the Week - 45th Week Simply Megan Joy Blog

This quote is from the 1985 movie, Anne of Green Gables. In the book, by Lucy Maud Montgomery, the words are slightly different, but the meaning is equal. In the film, Diana Barry says this in remembrance of what Gilbert once said.

I often forget this word of truth. In a world and society were being pretty is a major focus, it’s hard to remember that living isn’t all about having a flawless complexion, perfect teeth, beautiful hair, makeup, and wardrobe, and sparkling eyes.

I spend so much time, and too much time, worrying about what I look like. It seems like I’m surrounded by people who are just naturally beautiful – who look like they’re perpetually ready for a magazine photoshoot! But, for as long as I think this way, I am forgetting what Diana once reminded Anne. Being knowledgeable on the inside is quite more valuable than being pretty on the outside; because the things we do in life, whether it be school, or work, and even just daily life, will require our brains more than our looks.

Having common sense and knowledge will get us much farther in life than if our only quality is having a pretty face. If being beautiful is all we care about, we are overlooking the truth: that we don’t have to be flawless in our appearance to be beautiful, or important. I believe that people will remember us by what we do, what we say, and what we accomplish, and not by how rosy our cheeks are.

Now, I haven’t even begun to delve into this topic, but this is just a little reminder: Let’s not fill our brains with thoughts of “I wish I were prettier,” but instead fill it with knowledge, inspiration, encouragement, and all things worthwhile!

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Do you agree that being smart is better than being pretty?

Have you ever felt jealous?

Do you think that having common sense will be more valuable in your future than having a flawless complexion?

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Megan Joy

Sunday Bests // Red Tie in the Morning

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When I first put this outfit together, it was missing something, and it wasn’t until I walked past my brother’s tie collection that a bell chimed in my head. A tie! That’s what this jacket needs! I threw a red one around my neck, changed my shoes and purse to match, and ran out the door for church. At a reception afterward, a dear older man said that my outfit reminded him of a retro airline stewardess! I thought that was such a nice thing to say!

This “stewardess” outfit consists of mostly things that aren’t mine! The tie is my brother’s, the shoes are my sisters, and the skirt was sewn by my mom over 30 years ago. So now you know: I’m a clothes thief! However, the blouse and jacket are mine; they were gifts found at a thrift store. So I guess this outfit is even more special considering it didn’t cost me a cent! 

To go along with my post title, I’ve decided to include the old saying:

“Red sky at night,

Sailor’s delight.

Red sky in morning,

Sailor’s warning.”

It seems like I’ve known this little saying forever. Looking up at a blazing sky was a sign that tomorrow would be a beautiful day! What I didn’t know all those years, was that this little saying comes from the Bible! In the first book of the New Testament, Jesus was talking with the Pharisees and the Sadducees (leaders of the Jewish church). In Matthew 16:2-3 it says, “He answered and said unto them, when it is evening, ye say, it will be fair weather: for the sky is red. And in the morning, it will be foul weather today: for the sky is red and lowering. O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not discern the signs of the times?” KJV

In my own words, Jesus basically said, “You can know what the weather is going to be like tomorrow by looking at the sky, but you can’t figure out what is going to happen in the future by looking at the past?”

Over 2,000 years ago, Jesus said this, and it is still entirely true in today’s modern world of complex technology. Weather forecasters have all these instruments and devices to predict the weather, which they broadcast all across the country. If we are so proficient in the weather in that we can know the exact percentage of tomorrow’s precipitation, why is not everyone capable of looking at past history and learning from it? We can detect, or as Jesus says, discern, the future by looking at the past. History is forever repeating itself, so why not use our own brains to research it and use our knowledge to better the future? We each hold the brainpower to learn and to discern. I, personally, love history, though I know many people who have pledged their hearts against it. But history is not just all about dates and names. It’s about stories, great legends, and the lives of our very own ancestors!

Let’s not forget how smart we can be,

when we learn from our history!

Ok, I’m done my rant now! Until next time, faithful readers, carry on!

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skirt // made by my mom

jacket // thrifted

blouse // thrifted

tie // my brother’s

shoes // payless (my sister’s)

purse // thrifted

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Do you like the little red sky saying?
Did you know that it is from the Bible?
What do you think about learning from history?
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Megan Joy

Quote of the Week // 44th Week

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Audrey Hepburn was a British actress born in 1929. She was once dubbed the third best female actress in the Golden Age of Hollywood. Hepburn starred in many box office hits like, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Roman Holiday, Sabrina, and My Fair Lady. She was a well-studied ballet dancer, and in her later life, a UNISEF ambassador in the 1990s. Sadly, she died at age 62 of appendiceal cancer in Switzerland.

I can just hear those words spoken in her perfect accent! The cleverness of the quote just makes me smile. I had never known that little secret about the word “impossible” before. Just add an apostrophe and you have a whole new meaning to the phrase!

The definition of the word “impossible” is: “something not able to occur or be done.” It means that something is positively, without a doubt, absolutely not possible. Reading the definition got me thinking. It reminded me that nothing is impossible! All things are possible, with God! 

But what about wildly impossible things, like talking animals, walking on water, and surviving an over one-thousand-degree fire? These things seem impossible, right?

 Read Numbers 22:28, where it tells us about Balaam’s donkey, speaking out loud! Also, in Matthew chapter fourteen, we find the story of two different people walking on water. Finally, in the book of Daniel chapter three, is the telling of three men who were thrown into a fiery furnace, and lived! All of these things were done through God and by God! 

With God, all things are possible. The word “impossible” doesn’t apply when it comes to God’s abilities. No matter how out of this world, different, or unusual it is, God can do it and with God’s help we can do it too!

So the next time someone tells you that something is impossible, think of Audrey Hepburn’s little secret in that word, and know that with God, all things are possible.

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Did someone ever tell you it was impossible to achieve or do something?

What do you think those three stories in the Bible prove to us?

What is your favorite Audrey Hepburn movie?

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Megan Joy

Quote of the Week // 42nd Week

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Often times I plan to accomplish too many things in one day. I declare to myself that I will sew an entire historical dress in one day or finish writing a book. I tend to overestimate what can be accomplished in a day, therefore when the day is done, it becomes dissatisfying because I didn’t complete everything I set out to do.

It’s hard to know which goals to set every day when you have a million of them racing around in your head, each one fighting to win your attention at the finish line. When you have a huge amount of goals, which ones should you tackle today and what should you set aside for another day? How do you know how much is possible to achieve in one day? Are you setting yourself up to fail if you try to complete everything? These are tricky questions!

 To try to answer them, let’s get rid of the one-day deadline mindset. Instead, let’s broaden our time limit to a week or a month. Then, create a physical list of all your goals and impending accomplishments. We can divide them between the days in a week or in a month (depending on how many goals you want to set) and then begin with just a few goals on day one! Then you have a clear idea of how much you can get done, what should be done first, and what can wait for another day.

When your goals and your schedule don’t seem to work together, you can’t just stop life with a little button so you have time to achieve your goals (but that would be really awesome if you could!). However, this doesn’t mean that you must then cut down on the goals either. Distributing your goals evenly throughout the duration of a week or a month will create an easier way to keep track of your goals. It may take some special planning, but you don’t always have to sacrifice your goals just because your day is filled with too many things. So instead of perpetually focusing on all the goals you want to achieve, you can divide them, and focus on what you can do today. Doing this makes it seem possible to get everything done, because it is possible!
Ecclesiastes 3:1 “To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the Heaven: KJV

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Do you find yourself overestimating what you can achieve in a day?

Are you often overwhelmed by the many goals you wish to accomplish?

Do you have any other suggestions to help achieve goals and tasks?

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P.S. Don’t forget to enter the giveaway if you haven’t already! The giveaway closes on Wednesday at midnight!

Megan Joy

Quote of the Week // 41st Week

Quote of the Week - 41st Week Simply Megan Joy Blog

Mickey Rooney was a great American actor born in September of 1920. He grew up performing in vaudeville, and soon found himself on the stage, and later on the big screen. In a career lasting nine decades, he appeared in over 300 films, continuing to act until the last year of his life in 2014. He was best known for his long-running role as “Andy Hardy” in the famous series of seven movies. In 1944, he co-starred with Elizabeth Taylor in the film, National Velvet, and later, in 1979, in the The Black Stallion, with Kelly Reno, both of which are two of my most treasured movies! To me, he will forever be that funny young man with two charming eyes and a dashing smile!

We all have ideas and dreams of our future success. We envision what we hope to achieve and how we might get there. While we contemplate our dreams and hopes, we may try to decipher a trail that will lead us to where we want to go, The Wonderful Land of Success. We want to choose the easiest and fastest route to get there, a route that cannot fail us.

It would be lovely if this path actually existed. As it turns out, it doesn’t. In every journey to our great accomplishments, shortcoming will turn up somewhere along the road, because “we, as humans, are not perfect.” We can’t expect to live out our entire lives without failing at something. As we drive down that highway, with the wind whipping through our hair, sporting sunglasses and a hopeful smile, we are inevitably going to drive through “Failure-ville.” No matter which route we take, there will always be a Failure-ville. This certainly doesn’t sound very inspiring or motivational. It may even sound depressing. However, it’s not always healthy to sugar-coat the route to success. Way too many calories! Just kidding. . .

What I’m trying to say is, we can’t be afraid of driving through Failure-ville. It can bog us down for a while, but it’s not like we are stuck living there forever. There will be a time when we can just fill up the tank, high-tail it out of there, and hit the highway toward our great accomplishments! We can leave Failure-ville in the dust and get back on the road again! We just have to keep driving, keep dreaming, and especially keep depending on God’s strength and love, because we’ll never have to drive through Failure-ville alone.

Psalms 73:26 – “My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.” KJV

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Have you ever driven through Failure-ville?

What did you do to get back on the road?

Which Mickey Rooney film is your favorite?

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Megan Joy

What My Bicycle Taught Me

What My Bicycle Taught Me - simplymeganjoy.wordpress.com

The other day I went biking with my brother. It was the first warm and dry day of the week, so I was quite excited to head to the seven-mile trail with my backpack filled with water bottles, an ace bandage, and a handful of bandaids, just in case. I don’t even know where in the world we could have gotten Barbie bandaids! I have a feeling that my brother would rather bleed to death than to wear a Barbie bandaid!

The first half of the trail was rocky and covered with bumpy tree roots. The dirt path was set on a hillside with woods and a field above and a bluff and train tracks below. The best part was when we peacefully rode through the edge of the forest while listening to the soundtrack of Anne of Green Gables on my phone, which was wonderful!

The trail consisted of hills, many hills. They stretched up and down, then up, then back down again. It was scored with rocky slopes and miniature mountains. When we were at the top of a hill, we would peddle and coast all the way down in the hope that we could make it to the top of the next hill.

If we were lucky, we didn’t have to peddle at all and instead just rode up the hill with the ease that comes with momentum. Nevertheless, in many other cases, the uphill climb was just too tall and far for us to make it to the top without a struggle, even with the gears set.

You know the feeling; your bike starts to slow down, you peddle as hard as you can and wonder if you’ll make it to the top. The wheels spin slower and slower yet you’re using all your strength and energy. Then you have to decide; should I keep on peddling or get off and push my bike up to the top? You know that the wheels are barely even moving anymore, but you still want to keep on trying and stay on that bike. It would be your last resort to surrender to the hill and give up. But when do you know when it’s time to give up? You know you can’t continue like this forever, so you must choose to keep on or give up.

This story can also be related to our lives. We all have hills to climb and we all want to get to the top without a struggle, but when we begin to lose our speed, momentum, and strength we wonder if we’ll ever make it to the top. It’s hard to know when we’ve given all that we can give, and it’s even harder to know when to quit. To get off the bike and push it up the hill may seem like a failure, to give up. But sometimes we need to say, “that’s enough,” get off the bike, and truly accept that we have given all we that can.

You can only give so much!

When we have to use up all our strength, power, and energy to peddle up that hill, eventually we can’t give anymore and our bike will slowly come to a stop and simply fall over! It’s okay to take a break and say “no” when you’ve done all that you can do. Knowing when that time is can be difficult. How long should I keep peddling? The only person who knows that answer is you, so don’t let anyone talk you into giving more than you can give. You are allowed to get off the bike, slow down, and walk to the top. It’s not giving up, it’s saying no to “falling over.”

Don’t breakdown, take a break!

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Do you enjoy bike riding?

Have you ever biked uphill?

Do you need to say, “that’s enough” to something in your life right now?

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Megan Joy