Shalom, blogworld.

שָׁלוֹם (Shalom), blogworld.

That was too predictable, wasn’t it?


I just wanted to say hello.

My mind is still a bit muddled from the jet lag but the tiny fact that I can’t seem to make out a single coherent thought has never stopped me from talking heretofore so I shall proceed.

And besides, y’all are forgiving and this should help:

Just another thing I love about Atlanta: Octane cappuccinos.  By the way, what is the best cappuccino you’ve ever had?  That is a random but profound question for a Friday, don’t you think?  It just makes my entire week when the barista makes the little intricate designs with the foam.

Have I mentioned that I keep waking up at 4:00 in the morning hungry for hummus?

Yesterday I spent hours on end making this very basic video slideshow from my pictures from Israel.  My new hobby as of late is photography (and yes–it has taken the place of cooking for now).  Israel is quite a location for the photo enthusiast, let me tell you.  Please understand several things before you watch the slideshow:

  • 1) I am not Rich Kalonick, though he did walk me through several things via text message yesterday.  For the first time I think I fully respect the work he does when he creates the slideshows for the LPL events.  It takes more time and work than you might imagine. So thanks, Rich!
  • 2) The slideshow is quite long, running about twelve minutes. By no means should you watch the whole thing if you are bored to tears. You have complete control and you can’t say I didn’t warn you!  😉
  • 3) This slideshow reflects about 5% of the people and places on our trip to Israel. I literally whittled down 2,000 photos to about 200. Sadly, there was just no way to include them all here.  But on the bright side, if I had included all 2,000 the video would have been about six hours.

Having made this disclaimer, I do so much hope you enjoy it!

Israel Trip from Melissa Fitzpatrick on Vimeo.
Music added: “Beautiful” by Shawn McDonald & “I Stand Amazed” by Chris Tomlin.

Our trip was truly incredible.  I have some more substantial thoughts that I would like to share but I will get back to you with those ponderings when I am not in such a fog–hopefully sometime next week.

Have a wonderful weekend, Siestas! We sure love you!




465 Responses to “Shalom, blogworld.”

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  1. 201
    Forever His says:

    Enjoyed the pics so much. Thank you for sharing them. Brought back memories. Love that place.

    Phil 4:8

  2. 202
    Sandy says:

    Oh. My. Goodness! Melissa! Rich taught you well. This video is awesome! I sat still for the whole 12 minutes, which is saying a lot!
    Thank you so much for sharing this little bit of your incredible trip with us!

  3. 203
    Holly says:

    Thank you so much for sharing these wonderful pics… still crying 🙂 So hope one day to visit myself, but your pics brought such a smile to my face, and joy to my heart this am. And yes i watched the whole thing… !!! how could you not 🙂
    Thanks again.
    Holly in SC

  4. 204
    Paige says:

    Hey Melissa, You did a great job on the video, and the pictures were awesome!! I understand what it takes to make one of those as I am the only one of my friends who will make one, and that is partly what I went to school for. Looks like some awesome memories were made. I would love to go and see the holy land at some point in my life. Once again, great job!! 🙂

  5. 205
    Vicki says:

    How marvelous….how wonderful……breathtaking…

    Thanks for sharing your memories with us.

  6. 206
    Leigh Ann says:

    Thanks for sharing! I loved the picture of you and your mom side by side. You have the same eyes!! Never noticed it as much before.

  7. 207
    Cathy Davis says:

    I loved all the pictures – they are fabulous! You did a great job putting it all together.

    Welcome home!

  8. 208
    Angela H says:


  9. 209
    Gail Graham says:

    To me, with your photos, the music, the scenes, the places I saw- it became like a worship service, an awesome reverence and glory to God. I must save up and go to Israel. And just an aside – you have an amazing talent in photography, go for it! Thank you so much for sharing your time with us – it was almost as good as being there!

  10. 210
    Pam Houston says:

    So incredible! I was blessed by your “pic’s” and transported back to our trip to Israel in 1995, we left just 3 days before Rabin was murdered…so much has changed in the world since 1995, but I reflected how everything looked the same in Israel. It made me homesick, somehow. So glad you are all safely home, and transformed by the trip of a lifetime.

    Yes, I’ll say it: “Shalom!”
    Pam Houston>

  11. 211
    Carrie Hajovsky says:

    I had goose bumps all over me the entire time I watched this right up until the big picture of the camel and your mom holding that big bread thingy up to her mouth…truly amazing!!! My prayer is that one day my family would get to go before our Lord’s return, but if not, we will sure see it in all His glory!

  12. 212
    Leah says:


    I nearly bawled my eyes out through most of the video. It brought back such emotional memories of my time in the Holy Land in 2006. I felt like I was at home when I was there. I am going back in November and CAN NOT WAIT.


  13. 213
    Katie says:

    Absolutely beautiful! Do you or mom EVER have a bad hair day???

  14. 214
    Sherrie Watson says:

    Those were awesome pictures. Thank you for sharing. Makes me want to go.

    Sherrie Watson

  15. 215

    I just finished a beginner photography class myself, I have to say….your color, exposure, everything was just beautiful! :0) Thanks for sharing!

  16. 216
    Jeanette Fester says:

    love that. great job….

  17. 217
    Beverly says:

    Thank you so much! You truly captured beautiful images, especially the ones at night! I look forward to watching it again and again…to just set my eyes on the land God calls His own. I have never been and so want to…and I will someday. Thank you again!
    Shalom, shalom,

  18. 218
    carla says:

    Just breathtaking…so awesome, so jealous….We live in a remote part of Iowa, no fancy coffee shops but I am so so terribly addicted to Iced lattes from MCD. Yours looks mouthwateringly delicious. Glad you folks made it back ok and had such an awesome time walking where Jesus walked. Looking forward to hearing more about your trip. You Moore girls sure do look good for smelly women as your Mother puts it.:)

  19. 219


    Pictures are my love language…and pictures set to beautiful music put me over the edge, so I obviously cried my way through this slideshow.

    These pictures are so powerful – I cannot imagine walking where my Savior Jesus walked!!

    Thank you so much for sharing!


  20. 220
    Nichole says:

    That was simply AMAZING, what a great experience ya’ll had.. You should make little scrap books, they only take a few min. to upload your pics and will send you the book…

  21. 221
    annette says:

    Wow! I love the faces, the water, the sacred places, the sheep! You captured it. Thanks for taking the time to put this together. It’s well worth the few minutes. Glad you’re home. What’s next for Melissa? Let us know. Love you, A

  22. 222
    Theresa says:

    Absolutely amazing. I would love to go to Israel someday. I pray that we all stand with her in spite of the political overtones happening right now. Thank you for sharing and you did an outstanding job.

    Cappuccino?…not a drinker but the best humus I’ve ever had is from my daughter’s restaurant in Birmingham, Alabama.

  23. 223
    Michelle says:

    So good to see you bless the staff/volunteers with this Israel trip!

  24. 224
    Jacki says:

    Breathtaking! Thanks so much for sharing!

  25. 225
    Diane says:

    Thank you for this photographic view of a beautiful place. I love photography also and what stories can be told in photographs. God bless you as you continue on His journey.

  26. 226
    Sallye says:

    Beautiful. Some of my most favorite places on the planet. I am beliving that God will make a way for you to attend Yeshiva in Jerusalem. Our God is so awesome, and now when you pick up your Bible to read, you will hear it, taste it, and smell it. Acts 22:14 “Then he said, ‘The God of our fathers has chosen you that you should know His will, and see the Just One, and hear the voice of His mouth.’

    Blessing to you,

  27. 227
    Melanie says:

    Shalom, It has been since March 2009 since I was in The Holy Land. I still love Hummus and I still miss fresh yellow grapefruit and tones of fresh vegetables. Yuval and his brother Boaz were our guides. I miss them most. I still get tears in my eyes when I think of my real home. My favorite cappuccino is fat free toffee nut latte. No pretty swirls though. My most favorite Cappuccino is when I have made a new friend with the wonderful server. I always try to love on my server. I learned that from my pastor and the example he sets. Did you climb the Masada? Looking forward to growing more in the Lord with yall. By the way I had almost 3000 pictures. I looked like a Japanese tourist ( No Offense Please) Love ya’ll

  28. 228
    Terry says:

    I loved every minute of your slideshow…I think I would have enjoyed the whole 2000 :o) Thanks for sharing your beautiful pictures of such an a amzing place. I also really enjoyed hearing “Beautiful” for the first time–awesome song.

  29. 229
    Sue Reinke says:

    Wonderful, thank you!
    What camera and lenses did your use? Fabulous photography!

  30. 230
    Bethany says:

    Melissa…I love you! Thank you for sharing that snapshot of the real live places that our Lord physically entertained. I felt a little insecure that the pictures had me in tears but after reading other siesta comments, I realize that I am not alone in that emotion! The pics of the tomb and the word Nazareth and the Garden of Gethsemene (I think…grove of olive trees), and the Wailing Wall, just had me undone. I’ve not even spent time with my precious Lord today but that right there was my devotion for this morning. I though of you, my sisters in Christ, but more so my precious Lord.
    So thank you sweet one! Thank you…you don’t know truly what it means to me.
    Much love,

  31. 231
    shannon says:

    I watched with tears streaming down my face! So beautiful! I have never seen you all look so beautiful either 🙂 Thank you for sharing!!

    My dear husband and I have decided if we ever save up enough money for a family vacation ..we would rather take the fam there then go to Disney World!!

    Love you gals!

  32. 232
    Sandra says:

    Enjoyed every minute of the video. Such wonderful pictures and memories for you. How I would love to go someday. Some pictures brought tears to my eyes (those of the wailing wall). Glad all had a wonderful trip and glad all arrived back safely.

  33. 233
    VR says:

    To anyone who will read this, please pray for our church service tomorrow. My husband will be preaching on Finances tomorrow. We live in a catholic community and all we’ve ever heard since living here is “all the church wants is our money.” It is sad that they have this view and many in our church are products of this mentality. Pray that the people’s hearts will be open to this message and that it will be different than any talk they’ve ever heard on giving. Thank you to whoever may pray for this.

  34. 234
    Alta Blake says:

    Absolutely wonderful”) brought back so many memories of our trip. Our pictures are not as beautiful. Melissa you are so talented.I have loved your photography. You should do a devotion someday and draw inspiration to write from your pictures”) Looks like a very memorable time for you and Mom and the sweet girls with you. Wish I had been along with you all. Jesus loves you and I do too<

  35. 235
    Lori, Love2Praise says:

    WOW! Melissa, love the pictures, the music. I didn’t expect to get so emotional but I did. I have always wanted to go to the Holy Land but now I just know I have to make it a priority. The only problem will be that I will be wanting to hear Beth’s descriptions and Bible teachings. Your mom has such a beautiful way of bringing Jesus to life.

    What truly moved me was seeing all of you there, the Jews, the Brother in his robe, the vast differences between the people yet the sameness. How we are all on a lifelong pilgrimage to know our Savior and our God. It moved me to tears to think of how that desire is implanted in each and every one of us. What an awesome experience it must be to walk where He walked, to touch what He touched and to experience the sights and smells that He must have experienced. And then to realize that is why HE came here. To experience what we experience, to become one with us.

    Thanks for sharing, I have watched it over and over again. I am amazed at how large the City is. I never thought it was so big. Beautiful!


  36. 236

    Melissa … wow! You are truly an artist. My whole family sat here and watched the video! Thank you for taking us there.

    Love, Shelli

  37. 237
    Kathy Wilshire says:

    WOW!! That was truly amazing! I sat here bawling my eyes out in worship! I so want to go someday, and your slide show made my desire even more urgent. I would have probalby been in tears the ENTIRE trip, though!
    Thanks for sharing this with us!

    In Humble Gratitude to CHRIST!

    Kathy W

  38. 238
    Shirlea says:

    Wow! Thank you Melissa! My husband and I have always wanted to go to Israel. Now, more than ever! I plan to look at your pictures over and over and over and over. I’ve got plenty of kleenex! 🙂

  39. 239
    Cynthia Petersen says:

    What a joy and blessing to watch your slide show Melissa~
    I was touched by an angel~It makes me want to go asap.
    Love to you,

  40. 240
    lindakat says:

    Thank you for investing so many hours in the slideshow, it’s simply amazing! I think you have a rare gift in photgraphing not only the beauty, but the emotion behind the moment. I’ve never been to Israel, and even viewing other people’s photos of their trip really didn’t stir a desire to go. But a few minutes into this slideshow found tears streaming down my face and something new stirring in my heart — a desire and longing to experience where Jesus spent His earthly life and ministry. The combination of photos and music – WOW! The scenes at the Western Wall just did me in.

    Thank you for sharing with your Siestas!


  41. 241
    Valerie says:

    You did a wonderful job on the slideshow Melissa.
    I sat here looking at the pictures and listening to the great songs with tears in my eyes.
    It brought back so many wonderful memories.
    I’m so thankful each of you were able to go and share this awesome trip!
    Thank you for putting this together & for sharing with us.
    Loved it!!! Can’t wait to hear more.
    P.S. That cappuccino looks SO good!

  42. 242
    Jillian says:

    OH. MY. LORD.
    I have never been to Israel.
    I did not realize how beautiful it is.
    I did not realize that pictures could be so powerful.
    Thank you, sweet Melissa, for sharing.
    Your montage is fantastic (although it made me weepy).
    Well done, good and faithful servant~to your siestas!

  43. 243
    Terre Munk says:

    Oh, Melissa. Your video is so moving. I feel that I was with you and the others on this journey. Thank you for sharing the sites through your camera. You are a very talented photographer.

  44. 244
    Carolina Light says:

    Thank you so much for sharing the pictures.
    Yes, I watched all 11 minutes and 47 seconds with chills from head to toe and tears streaming down my face.
    Words cannot express . . .
    What a blessing!

  45. 245
    Kathy says:

    Thank you for the most awesome time of worship I just experienced with kleenex box close at hand. Perfect choices of songs, esp “amazed’ the last one. Now we need a second addition, (another 12 minutes); oh and also a commentary to go along with it all!! (not asking too much is it!!) Thank you so much for the best travelogue ever-since I cannot go there myself. Hoping and praying there will develop a study out of this experience? !!

  46. 246
    leslie says:

    Thank you for taking the time to put that together…it was a beautiful testimony to your pilgrimage. I was so touched by the picture of the monk, (priest) and for some odd reason, the trees with the really thick, thick trunks. The Wailing Wall is stupendous…are those prayers stuck in the cracks?

    The photos of your mom are beautiful…bet one of those ends up on a book cover some day!

    I am grateful your trip was a blessing and am thankful that you blessed us with images that encourage and remind us of our Lord…
    Leslie in Utah

  47. 247
    Corrie says:

    Great pictures, Melissa! 🙂

  48. 248
    Terri says:

    Wow! Thank you Melissa, for sharing your trip with us! It is a trip I would love to make some day! But since I haven’t been able to yet, thanks for letting us tag along with you through your beautiful pictures! I loved them!

  49. 249
    Juli says:

    I sit here watching the picture video – with the music playing – and my 5 year old, Mia begins dancing to your song choices. At about 4 minutes into the video, she comes to my computer screen and asks what is playing with the music? I was explaining you all went together as mother and daughter (and many friends) where Jesus once walked and lived and taught. She was in awe of the pictures. She first asked “how did they get there mamma?” I explained you fly on the airplane and showed her on the world map where it was. Her next question was “can you and I go someday mamma?” I can not imagine the joyful, amazing journey you had together but I do pray that someday I will take take that same jouney with my beautiful daughter and have those experiences and conversations I know you must have had! Thank you for sharing and making the video a great time of 5 year olds type of discussion, teaching and anticipation for our future trip I am sure we will oneday take.

  50. 250
    Dionna says:

    Thoroughly enjoyed the video!~ I wish I knew what I was looking at in certain pictures as I just wanted to reach my hand out and touch – bridging the gap of history.

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