Shawna Pataska // The Rubies Project

Shawna Pataska on The Rubies Project by Throwing Pinecones

Over, under, over, under, over, under… You know in kindergarten when they ask you the big question: “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Well, I’m pretty sure my answer was a singer. Something I had known to do since I don’t know when. Now, as an 18-year-old, fresh out of highschool, I can tell you that my love for singing has never changed, but I have come to find that God had bigger desires for me than I ever had for myself. And I would choose them over mine any day!

Over, under, over, under, over, under… This is my job, no joke! I’m a weaver, and let me tell you, its so much better than that singing career, or fame, or any other plan I could have made on my own. Weaving has taught me so much, both physically and spiritually, and I wouldn’t trade that for anything! I had been seeking the Lord and found one of His hidden desires for me. And now, I’m also a business owner, Kingdom builder, Gospel spreader, missionary, and missionary supporter! So much more than I thought I would be!

But, He never left out the singing either; I’m also a worship leader at my church. That’ll happen ya know? Seeking Him will open doors, create opportunities, and give you the greatest desires. One of my favorite scriptures tells us this:

“Delight thyself also in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.” (Psalm 37:4-5)

So I took Him at His word and it was one of the best decisions I have ever made!

Now, all I want are His desires, His ways, His plans. I have tasted and seen that the Lord is good (Psalm 34:8) and that He has the best in store for me.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.  Jeremiah 29:11

So no matter where you are today, what you’re doing, and what plans you have made, I encourage you to draw near to Him, give over your desires for His, and trust in the fact that He has some amazing things in store for you. Then prepare yourself, cause you’ve just opened the flood gates!

words by Shawna  | photo by NAME NAME


ABOUT SHAWNA

I am the owner and creator behind “Copper and Wool” in my home town of La Crosse, WI. I started weaving in November of 2014 and was instantly hooked! I love Jesus, His people, and chai tea. My relationship with Christ began on my first missions trip to Los Angeles, CA where I hope to return in the near future for missions training. Through weaving I hope to build the kingdom, spread the Gospel, and support missionaries.

CONNECT WITH SHAWNA

SHOP | INSTAGRAM | FACEBOOK |  PINTREST


FIGHT HUMAN TRAFFICKING!

The Rubies Project has teamed up with She Has A Name to help fight human trafficking and restore the God-given value to women everywhere. Join us!

Learn MoreSHOP (all profits go to SHAN!)


The Rubies Project is devoted to sharing the stories of ordinary women to make an extraordinary impact for Christ. SHARE YOUR STORY HERE


The Rubies Project on throwing pinecones.com

 

This Week // More Than A Feeling

A Weekly Post on Authenticity

I am working hard towards my goal of authenticity here on Throwing Pinecones. It’s hard to be real over the walls social media builds, my goal is to tear those down and create community here on Throwing Pinecones that is real, encouraging and inspiring. This certainly won’t happen overnight, but a weekly “this week” post is a step in the right direction!

The Rubies Project T-Shirts

 

(check out my beautiful friend wearing the new Rubies Project T-Shirt!)

THIS WEEK …

// Brian and I are working at Black Lake Bible Camp as the staff pastor couple. It’s the best job. Ever.

I am not going to lie this week was a mixture of busyness, heavy conversation, ice coffees and so many emotions. I loved (most) every second of it. God is stretching me in a lot of ways this summer, and to be honest I can’t help but be totally overwhelmed and flattered by it all.

It is incredible to me that God wants to invest so very much in me when I feel the least worthy of being invested in. This has been my theme this summer: to learn how to trust God more.


 

LESSONS LEARNED

// Trusting God is more than head knowledge; it’s more than a feeling; it’s more than just a decision. Trusting God is surrendoring all of yourself to the one who gave everything for nothing at all.

I am learning that this kind of trust is not a trust I can muster on my own. I NEED God’s help and I NEED help from the people He placed in my life. I am learning that it is good to want to be invested in by others. I am learning that it is okay to hurt and it is okay to grieve. When these things are done in the context of God’s undying love and grace He will redeem us!

God is in the business of changing lives, hearts and mindsets. He gives out wisdom like free candy for those who ask. He is a God that challenges and loves us through our darkest. He is a God that wants us to experience emotion, problems and hurt. He knows that we are broken people in need of love and guidance and He alone is that guidance.

I am just in awe of Him.


SHARED MINUTE

This is another challenge I gave myself at the beginning of 2015. I have not been doing very good at this one lately due to lack of wi-fi and the time to post regularly.

THE CHALLENGE: Every day at 6:00pm (pst) I take a quick photo of whatever I am doing and post it on my Instagram using #sharedminute. I invite you to join!

Here are some of this weeks photos.

fourth of july on the lake Shared Minute Tomato Garden Shared Minute BLBC gear Shared Minute


 

READING

// Brian and I are still reading Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis together. We are taking just two chapters a day (though I have not!) and talking about it together.

I am going through a study called The Genius Process. It is a study about finding new beginnings and learning how to grieve and heal from the additions we create for ourselves. It talks about how addiction does not necessarily mean a substance addiction, though it can be that, addiction is any behavior that is destructive to ourselves (and others) that we do to survive. Things like control, busyness, isolation, anxiety, fear etc. It is hard to recognize the hurts in our lives. It’s hard for me to not give people excuses or reasons for their behavior. Guys, I am just learning so much.

Mere Christianity was a part of The Sisters Read challenge I join with Lilah from Just a Sparrow and her sister. I am not going to lie, I’ve done pretty badly at keeping up with the challenge. Though I have been reading more than I usually do, so yay for the little things!

 


 

GOALS

Accomplishing goals is really important to me, sometimes it’s a healthy amount and sometimes not so much…. Though, I am leaning that despite me efforts God’s plans will always prevail.

Less of me and more of Him.

Last weeks goals I accomplished …

  • Scheduled the next Monthly Rubies Chat Newsletter. The Rubies Chat emails are exclusive interviews with one of The Rubies who submitted their story that month. (view the menu bar to see this weeks featured Ruby!)
  • Sent out July Newsletter.
  • Finished the decoration for the Tabernacle at BLBC.
  • Finished editing my brothers engagement photos!

BLOG + SHOP

// the upcoming week

  • Ship out The Rubies Project T-Shirts to Kickstarter supporters (and you if you buy one. all profits go to fight human trafficking! no big deal.)
  • Promote She Has A Name and help support their cause.
  • Schedule Instagram posts.

PERSONAL

// this upcoming week.

  • Be better about eating regularly. Prioritize my health!
  • Catch up reading Mere Christianity.
  • Set aside specific time to be intentional with my relationship with God.

 

STATS

My goal is that one day the Throwing Pinecones community will be large enough that I can support my family off of it’s income. I am not earning any income as of right now, as I am focusing on building my readership. By being honest with my stats it acts as public accountability for me and encourages me to work hard to reach my goals.

BLOG //

Two Weeks Ago:

  • visitors: 212
  • views: 124
  • views per visitor: 1.76

Last Weeks:

  • visitors: 137
  • views: 95
  • views per visitor: 1.44

 


 

MONTHLY NEWSLETTER SIGN UP

One of my goals is to build my email newsletter list. I am using it as a place to get to know you! My hope is that it builds a community of creative women who are looking to grow their relationship with God.

Rubies Chat Interview Newslatters

RUBIES CHAT // I have added something incredibly exciting to the newsletter content. Rubies Chat! Rubies Chat is an overview of all of the women who have shared their story for The Rubies Project. PLUS it will include an exclusive interview with one of the women who have shared their story that month!

P.S. You can get a sneak peak of what the Rubies Chat emails look like HERE.

Subscribe Here + Join the Community

 

Throwing Pinecones Shop + Blog
(click logo above or open the sidebar to learn more about Throwing Pinecones)

 


 

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Sarah Bronske // The Rubies Project

Sarah Bronske // The Rubies Project
I grew up in a quiet family of five, my parents, a younger sister and brother. My mom was always a believer but we didn’t start to go to church until I was about 10 or 11 (too long ago to remember). I started going to the youth group, which was very large and made some friends and thought I was learning a ton then accepted Christ into my life and was baptized.
The end of freshman year we started to go to a new church that was much smaller. This church had a different approach on preaching God’s word. They opened up their Bibles and really taught way more than I thought there was to the Bible. I joined their youth group which was smaller and close-knit group. It was then that I really started to slowly build my relationship with Jesus. After that I realized what I had before was just me saying words. This time I really had accepted Jesus and the Holy spirit started to work in me.
After High School I started a class that our church offered Contenders Bible School which really helped my knowledge and relationship grow even more. I also then co-taught an AWANA class and I still teach a children’s church class with my husband once a month.
At 20 I got married to the love of my life. We had met in youth group and were friends all through high school (during which I had a huge crush on him!) Then 10 months ago we had a beautiful, baby girl whom we love and adore.
Since then our life has been quiet with not much excitement. Which can be hard sometimes, I have had this secret fantasy of traveling the world and being this crazy photographer. God daily reminds me though that I have an amazing life. I will start to get jealous when I see other blogging photographers share their pictures from their travels, it can be kind of discouraging. It always seems that when I am in one of those moments that my daughter does something to make me smile, almost like God showing me, and giving me a gentle reminder of the amazing life I have. I haven’t always been the best at being patient and I can be a bit prideful, and I do struggle with communicating my feelings with God, but I try to do my best to let go of my pride and ask God to help me gain more patience. I am always glad when I do, it always makes me feel better, no penned up negative, energy and unneeded stress of all the silly, little things in life.
I guess through my whole life I have thought it was boring and didn’t matter much because I haven’t done any crazy stuff but God can work in and through our lives even if we do led a quiet one.
words by Sarah Bronske | photo by Josh Bronske

ABOUT SARAH

Hello, My name is Sarah, I am married to my best friend and we have a beautiful, baby girl. I love spending time with my family, going on walks in town or on hikes here in beautiful, western Washington . I am a stay at home mom who is also a professional photographer, a crocheter and artist.

CONNECT WITH SARAH

INSTAGRAM | BLOG | FACEBOOK | SHOP | PINTREST


The Rubies Project on throwing pinecones.com

This Week // 10 Stitches and a Giant Cassette Tape

A Weekly Post on Authenticity

I am working hard towards my goal of authenticity here on Throwing Pinecones. It’s hard to be real over the walls social media builds, my goal is to tear those down and create community here on Throwing Pinecones that is real, encouraging and inspiring. This certainly won’t happen overnight, but a weekly “this week” post is a step in the right direction!

computer, coffee, olympia coffee roasters, wallet

THIS WEEK …

// Brian and I are working at Black Lake Bible Camp as the staff pastor couple and this week was the first week we got to meet with the staff for one on ones. What an honor! Brian and I both were really blessed to connect with several of the staff members in a really meaningful way. I just loved every moment. I’m incredibly exhausted. Still. It’s going to be a summer theme. I can tell.

Even with so much growth and positivity this week was a tough one. Brian and I made another trip to the hospital, but this time it was for a camper. This poor little nine year old got ten stitches on his leg and handled it like a champ! He had the biggest gash I have ever seen. It was so very deep. He is the toughest kid I know. Ever. To make matters worse, just as Brian and I were going to leave the clinic I passed out. And it was for the second time! Gees, right? I am totally okay and the doctors say it might be low iron levels, so it’s an easy fix. Nonetheless, it was way too much excitement for a Tuesday night.

Balancing work and Throwing Pinecones has been tough. I am realizing that in order to be the most effective at BLBC I am gong to have to hold back little on Throwing Pinecones. While I can still maintain The Rubies Project and dabble here and there on the blog it is an unreal expectation of myself to be able to but 100% into it this summer. My prayer is that even though I have less time to commit to Throwing Pinecones that God will still use it as a tool to love women to Christ. The He will grow Throwing Pinecones in a way I could never do on my own accord.

Oh! So, the theme for BLBC is “Rewind” aka the 80’s. So, I have been working busily at creating a GIGANTIC cassette tape. It is four feet by eight feet. It is going to be awesome! Rest assured you will see some pretty great photos once it (and the giant rubiks cube) are finished.


 

LESSONS LEARNED

// Brian and I are leaning more about how to work together as a unit. We are finding the line between working hard to encourage the staff and spend time with them, while still resting in each others love and company.

I am learning that trusting in God is more than just feeling; it is full substance to Christ. Giving Him all of my fears, goals and dreams to God. It’s about trusting Him even when I think I can handle it better myself.


 

READING

// Brian and I are still reading Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis together. We are taking just two chapters a day (though I have not!) and talking about it together.

Mere Christianity was a part of The Sisters Read challenge I join with Lilah from Just a Sparrow and her sister. I am not going to lie, I’ve done pretty badly at keeping up with the challenge. Though I have been reading more than I usually do, so yay for the little things!

 


 

GOALS

Last week I accomplished more of my goals than I thought I would. I have a nasty habit of giving myself (way) too much to do and this week was more evidence of that!

Last weeks goals I accomplished …

  • Drank more water + ate a salad a day! What a yummy goal.
  • Finished reading A Grief Observed by C.S. Lewis.
  • Spent more time in God’s word. (though I was attacked by a pigeon while doing so!! that’s a story for another time, though it’s a pretty good one.)
  • Finished Monthly Rubies Chat Newsletter. The Rubies Chat emails are exclusive interviews with one of The Rubies who submitted their story that month. (view the menu bar to see this weeks featured Ruby!)

BLOG + SHOP

// the upcoming week

PERSONAL

// this upcoming week.

  • Finish the decoration for the Tabernacle at BLBC.
  • Edit my brothers engagement photos.(eek!)
  • Catch up reading Mere Christianity.
  • Take naps as needed!

 

STATS

My goal is that one day the Throwing Pinecones community will be large enough that I can support my family off of it’s income. I am not earning any income as of right now, as I am focusing on building my readership. By being honest with my stats it acts as public accountability for me and encourages me to work hard to reach my goals.

BLOG //

Two Weeks Ago:

  • visitors: 253
  • views: 162
  • views per visitor: 1.45

Last Weeks:

  • visitors: 212
  • views: 124
  • views per visitor: 1.76

 

SHARED MINUTE

This is another challenge I gave myself at the beginning of 2015. I have not been doing very good at this one lately due to lack of wi-fi and the time to post regularly.

THE CHALLENGE: Every day at 6:00pm (pst) I take a quick photo of whatever I am doing and post it on my Instagram using #sharedminute. I invite you to join!

Here are some of this weeks photos.

pew lake black lake bible camp browsers books store, olympia, wa pink rose


 

MONTHLY NEWSLETTER SIGN UP

One of my goals is to build my email newsletter list. I am using it as a place to get to know you! My hope is that it builds a community of creative women who are looking to grow their relationship with God.

RUBIES CHAT // I have added something incredibly exciting to the newsletter content. Rubies Chat! Rubies Chat is an overview of all of the women who have shared their story for The Rubies Project. PLUS it will include an exclusive interview with one of the women who have shared their story that month!

You can get a sneak peak of what the Rubies Chat emails look like HERE.

Subscribe Here + Join the Community

 

Throwing Pinecones Shop + Blog
(click logo above or open the sidebar to learn more about Throwing Pinecones)

 


 

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.