Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Money Matters

I wrote this in my journal the other day and decided this wasn't something to keep to myself. You'll probably find it humorous that I write in my journal the same way I would write here, but I'm a little on the quirky side anyway.

"I was at the mall the other day, and as I walked along I slowed down a little to watch people. Rush, rush, rush. Buy, buy, buy. More and more bags. Things they need? doubtful. Things for others? Probably not. And I began to think about how God must look down watching us shop and just sigh a sad and heavy sigh because this was never what He created this life to be. It's not about accumulating things. I mean, this is what we spend our free time doing! Life is not really about us at all. How very irresponsible of us to waste such precious time, money, and energy on things that don't last. By the time you buy new things, some of your old things have gone out of syle, and you have to buy more to keep up! How exhausting!"

"The irony in this is that as I was thinking all of these thoughts, I was contemplating buying this one pair of shoes. Very cute, very comfortable, on sale, and I had seen them once before and had debated buying them then. I passed them up once, could I do it twice?? Well, I didn't need them. In fact they were probably the last thing on earth I needed to buy."

"It was then I realized how Satan uses consumerism to draw us away from Christ as we become self-centered drones of society, buying whatever they sell us and tell us is the latest and greatest thing--sometimes even slapped with a giant red sale sticker on it. Now, I know that some things are ok to buy, but I have to wonder if others cross the line into self-centered sin? Were those shoes not just shoes any more but a shiny and stylish tool of Satan? "

"Being part crazy as I am, I started calling them Satan's shoes in my head. And no, I did not buy Satan's shoes that day, but I have fallen into his traps many times before and am sure to do it again. But next time I will be better equipped against his ploys."

Any thoughts? Am I the only one spending too much time looking for things to buy? or buying things they don't really need? What's your opinion of financial sin? Is it suppose to be all black and white, or is there a grey area?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

My Best Friend's Wedding

Saturday my best friend got married, and I was the maid of honor. It was a joyful but sad day to watch the "Fantastic Four" slowly but surely disbanding. All of us were in the wedding. It was truly beautiful. Jessie was absolutely gorgeous. She did a great job choosing decorations and planning the ceremony and reception, not that I doubted she would for a second. I was more stressed out than the bride, which makes me think that I will be a wreck on my wedding day. Lacie, Sarah Ann, and I were privileged to be able to sing at Jessie's wedding. It was really just a good time once things started rolling. I was even allowed to fulfill the highest of all maid of honor duties--helping the bride pee. :) O, and should I mention that I caught the bouquet? Sorry Lacie. :P
The wedding party

Mr. & Mrs. Bobby Bernier

It was a tough fight for the bouquet...

but I won!
Congratulations Jessie and Bobby! I love you both!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

I wear my sunglasses at night...

Recently my sister and I took a trip across the country to San Diego. I have always loved California, but this was a special trip because our dear friends the Scott and Becky live there. Even though we got there during June gloom, I hardly remember the cold weather compared to all of the fun I had with "my peepers." :) And even better than all of the fun was all of the encouragement I recieved and the things I learned from them. Just some of the many perks of being around Scott and Becky! We took over a hundred pictures while in Cali, but I'd like to share some of my faves.

SAL & I at Point Loma overlooking all of San Diego and the surrounding area.

The first school house in historic San Diego, called Old Town. Scott only thinks he could be a mean teacher!

Having a picnic at La Jolla, right after seeing the seals and sea lions in their natural habitat. Looks like a double date with two cute blondes to me... :)

My favorite...a bonfire ON the beach!...this just happened to be right before I got a mouthful of gooey marshmellow and hair in the same bite...EW!

Balboa Park. Two words: huge and beautiful.
Getting to see the Invisible Children office. Very cool.
My 1st major league baseball game! Go Padres!

Thanks Scott and Becky for who you are and for all you do! You inspire me!


Sunday, May 3, 2009

Meet Harold and the Kids

I've picked up a new and very grandma-like hobby. I just can't seem to help myself. By the time I become an actual senior citizen I will be the best and most prepared for all of the post-retirement hobbies, a winner for sure.

The new one on the list is gardening. I was afraid that I would get tired of it or quit before the seeds were even in the ground. But I got inspired. Watch out world, here I come! The work was difficult. I had to dig up and replant the sod I moved to start my garden, which proved to be a rough start. Picking out the seeds was the most fun. I bought my own purple garden gloves. I worked the soil, added fertilizer, and planted the seeds. My mom helped since I was such a newby to the gardening world. We edged my newly formed bed and waited...

The garden is ready.

Every afternoon I would faithfully water the ground just hoping for all my hard work to produce something beautiful. I really didn't know what to expect. I didn't want to get my hopes up too much. Was I watering too much or too little? Was the soil good enough? Maybe I should have bought one more bag of cow poo.(Why isn't this stuff free? Does other poo work the same? I have a lot more questions about this suspicious plant growing stuff.)
After a week of patiently waiting and hoping, a beautiful thing happened. I went out for daily water duty and bam! GREEN! After staring at the ground in utter amazement rather closely and holding my breath a little bit, I ran inside and yelled to my mom, "I've got babies!!"
Those teeny tiny little sprouts brought me more joy than I could have ever imagined. By the next day 10 baby plants turned into 20. And they are growing and growing. I love it. I love it!
Now I don't want to offend anyone. To each his own. But I think gnomes and other garden statues and decorations are tacky and slightly humorous. Not pretty. Not neat. So, I was in Target the other day, and being the thrifty girl that I am, I headed straight for the dollar spot. And right now they have all of this garden stuff which screamed my name. Yes, it did. That's where I met Harold and knew right away that he would make a great addition to my little garden family. Harold is a 3 inch tall garden gnome, kinda like a leprechaun gnome. He fits right in. My family is complete.
They have gotten a little bigger now, but these are some of my first pictures of them.
First Sprouts

A little bigger

Thursday, April 2, 2009


Warning: Do not read that last post unless you are extremely bored! I had no idea how long it was!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Just an update.

Writing is something I must feel motivated to do. When you see on your friend's blog that you haven't posted in five weeks, you get a little motivated. Life without work has been strangely busy. If you talk to anyone who knows me well, they could tell you that I am s-l-o-w. Seriously, I do not like to do anything fast. And yet I cannot remember when my life has ever been outside of the fast track. Some people joke that they need to schedule appointments to see me. And yet I spend an incredible amount of time alone. (And don't think I'm complaining!) I guess people only want to see me on days that I'm busy.

But no, in all seriousness I have never been able to watch this much TV in my life. Or spend time working on my hobbies. I like this. But I also look forward to change when my schedule is packed with class assignments and part-time jobs. That being said, I just handed over the last piece of my graduate school application today. Yesterday I took the GRE, and when I finished I felt like breaking out into a dance in the testing center parking lot. My score was not that grand, but I was on top of the world. All of that studying, all of that anxiety--finished. I went through an entire GRE study book only for the math portion. I had another book that I studied vocabulary words from. It wasn't that it was hard, but I felt like my future hung on my retaining every detail. And now it's history.

Outside of graduate school preparation, God has given me some really cool opportunities to work in my church. All of them have been perfectly fitting for me. All of them God has been preparing me for all along. First, I work with our elementary aged girls on Wednesday nights. My job has been to come up with a song and dance routine with the help of the sixth graders and teach it to the rest of the class. This song will be performed in a few weeks at the annual mother/daughter banquet. It is a bigger deal to the kids than it is for any of the adults so I wanted them to feel like it was truly their own. And boy is it. I have loved being a part of my church's "interpretive movement" team since I was 12. As funny as the idea of it sounds, (and I have been mocked by college roommates) I think it can be absolutely beautiful and have become as skilled as someone who has never taken a single dance class can be. So I was more than happy to take this on. I could have done it all by myself but chose to let the sixth graders take the lead. So special. That's all I have to say. I have learned so much in working with all of these girls.

Another thing I am doing is being a substitute for both Sunday school and extended session with the children. I've found that both of these have helped me really get to know the kids at my church. I like being there as well.

Lastly, the most overwhelmingly exciting thing has been that I have been helping to teach the high school girls small group Bible study on Sunday nights. I get nervous every time I go, because I have never really taught before, and never at all with girls this age! But I get so pumped when I am preparing and when I start to teach these girls. I want them to know God and know God's Word. I want them to learn to really love Him. I know they are capable. I don't know when was the last time I got so passionate about something. I go to the store, see things and think, gee I think the girls would love this, I oughta buy it. Ideas bounce around my brain, and the word of God pops off the page nearly knocking me over. It's so crazy, and I never thought I could be good at this. My biggest problem is trying not to get ahead of God, because I'm rarin to go! It has been really cool to look around the room and see girls who are truly interested in what the word of God is saying. So cool.

Enough of my tirade. If I'm ever talking about the book of James, it has to do with our study. I just spent all afternoon getting a craft ready for them, a little somethin somethin to keep their Bible study stuff in. $ .75 bags at Hobby Lobby, that's what I'm talkin about!

So, that's my church stuff. On another note, I've been working out and I think it's paying off. I'm not getting on a scale until after Easter because I gave up sweets for Lent. I don't want to turn my Lent commitments into an attempt to lose weight. Until then, I can at least say I'm feeling better.

I was looking at my new year's resolutions and strangely writing them out has proved to pay off at least a little. Now I'm not by any means keeping them all, but I was impressed that some things did stick.

Looking ahead to my summer, I have found that I am busy or gone every other week until I hope to be leaving for graduate school. Kinda crazy and I'm trying to fit more in. It will be wonderful. I have to remind myself of that.

A few weeks ago I went to Florida and took Lacie along. We had a very good time and I did a bunch of things that I was very sad to leave behind again. I thought I was going to be stuck there, which I was more than content to be, because my car was making funny noises. But fifty dollars later I had no explanation and I could not make my car make the sound until I had pulled off the dealership's property. Not fun.

Probably my favorite thing of the whole trip in all of its glory was getting to attend Christ Fellowship. We drove from Orlando to Palm Beach that morning and only missed the first ten minutes of the service, but I was smiling from ear to ear the entire time. Every moment brought me so much joy, and I even got to see their new building. And of all things I got to see the people who knew me the most. I mean seriously wonderful.

Other highlights would be beach time, picnics at my favorite two trees in the world, night walk on the island, Moe's Monday, late night at Jazzman's, running into people who were glad to see me, talking in Towers, sneaking around campus giving thank you notes and visiting with professors who showed a lot of interest in what I was doing and where I was going. Could hardly have asked for better. God is so good.

Friday, February 20, 2009


Right now I'm a bit on a sick side. But after what I've put my body through the past two weeks, well it's safe to say I deserved it. In two weeks I have put over 2,500 miles on my car from a total of five days in driving time. I have spent time in Georgia, Florida, and Virginia. And stuck one weekend of very little sleep right at the end. Needless to say, I am in recovery mode and my body wants me to be in bed for most of the day. I try relentlessly to fight with it, but right now, body 1, spirit 0.
So what all was I doing you may ask? Well, let me tell you. First I drove straight into Hotlanta to drive through a graduate school I am looking at. Very cute although traffic there is way worse than West Palm! Then I drove to the Paisley Farmhouse where India, my artsy college roommate, was hard at work in her mom's precious store. I went to bed early that night, but still spent as much time as possible with her parents and twin cousins. The next day was another drive day.
India and I took our time getting ready the next day but were bursting at the seams because of a giant surprise we were taking part in! Our roommate Michelle and great friend Nate were getting engaged! He invited us to be there afterwards as a surprise. So we travelled the miles to Sarasota, FL to prepare a fantastic engagement party for her. And may I just say we did a fantastic job! What a team!
Of course, since I was so close I drove to Tampa to celebrate my cousin Katie's thirteenth birthday. All in a day's work!
After spending a few days in beautiful and sunny Florida, India and I headed back to her house. Spending one more night of restful sleep on her oh so comfy bed, I was off again. This time I was headed for my aunt's house in Stafford, Virginia. I slept the drive off again and refueled with Panera's broccoli cheddar soup. Mmmm...
From there it was time to get down to business. I went to work at her church preparing for a weekend of teenagers, music, late nights, early mornings, difficult spirituals truths, junk food, crazy fun games, and friends. My newfound talent? Laminating. Oh yeah.
I spent the entire weekend with ten beautiful thirteen year old girls. And despite all of its awkwardness and unpredictability, I loved it. I didn't leave best friends with these girls, but I hope that something from this weekend sticks with them. I still pray for them.
The band who led music this weekend and stirred our hearts towards God was Addison Road. I bought their cd before I went so that I would be able to sing along, and I'm sure glad I did.
When the weekend came to a close, I slept once again. And again. You'd think I had enough right? The week started well with a girls day. My cousin is a cosmotologist and agreed to cut my hair on her day off. How sweet of her. And I got a makeover! My hair and make-up looked fantastic! Top that off with a feast for lunch and spa pedicures for my aunt, cousin, other cousin's girlfriend, and me. What a day!
The day before I left I got to go into downtown DC. It was beautiful but chilling outside. After walking around and seeing some of the monuments, I knew it was time to spend some time indoors. Although museums are not my favorite, I decided I wanted to visit the Holocaust Museum. Talk about information overload! Yikes! I crashed on the way home that day. My uncle taught me about slugging(which is kinda like hitch-hiking/carpooling). He said I would be good at it since I sleep the whole time and wake up at my destination. Maybe.
By the time I woke up to drive home the next day, I was sick. Like as in can't stand up without feeling faint, pounding headache, and achy throat. G-ross! But I made it home, only to still be paying dearly for it now.

But you want to know what blessed my heart the most about this whole thing? In two weeks of travel and fun and makeovers and pigging out, I only lost about $50. The math doesn't add up. I know. Everywhere I went families paid for me, and I never expected them to pay a single dime on me. I made money by working at the church which was something I was volunteering to do. I really feel like the Lord just poured out His blessings through the hands of others in my life. Once I recuperate I'm ready to do it over again....well, maybe.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

A Couple of Things...

I've been looking at my blog and thought a couple of things could use some more info. First of all, if you didn't realize the picture at the top is me. This is me sitting on a bench at my favorite spot in all of Palm Beach. I've had a lot of memories there, even on that bench. You see the view in front of me, but what you don't see is what is behind me. Here's another piece of the puzzle that you are missing.

It's the biggest, most beautiful tree I've ever seen in my life. To get a better perspective on how big it actually is here's another picture.

Yeah, that's me sitting on one of the outstretched roots. It sits behind a beautiful church and is next to the oldest house in Palm Beach and the Flagler museum. There is a walking/bike trail between the tree and the bench where I am sitting. The bench overlooks the intracoastal waterway to downtown West Palm. Absolutely enchanting, really.
Another thing I wanted to draw your attention to is my music playlist at the bottom. If you're anything like me you probably have your own music turned on and rush to turn off my playlist as soon as you pull up the site. Well I'd like you to give it a chance. I put thought into my selections, and you might find something you like. The songs don't get changed that often, just every so often I'll find a song that inspires me and I'll add it. So you only have to listen every so often. That's not too much too ask right? I just discovered this indie singer JJ Heller. She's not new to the music biz, and I'm no music expert. But I found her, and I like her. You should check out her music at She even has a blog, so I may add her to my blog list.
That's really all. Feedback is always welcomed. If you think my music sucks, I won't change it, but I would like to know. And then I'll give you full permission to turn it off. :-)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Fulfillment of a promise

I promised you resolutions, and here they are. I like to categorize.

1. The one on the top of everyone's list: Lose weight and exercise! It makes the list every year after all of those wonderful Christmas parties. This year my sister and I are tag-teaming it and have a whole accountability system and weight loss plan...we'll see. I love food. But so far so good. My theme song? "I like to Move It"
2. Stop with the sarcasm. It only gets me into trouble. I started this program for one of my classes this past semester, and it was forgotten as soon as I got home. My goal was to replace sarcasm with genuine and kind words. I'll try again.

3. I got a stack of books for Christmas...and they should be read before 2010!
4. Take notes on the things I learn and want to remember from what I read.

5.I like to let others talk about themselves but am slow to mention anything about myself without being asked. I resolve to talk to someone every week about how my life is going, even my insecurities.
6.Be more vulnerable. I shudder at the word. I've decided to try to open up more this year. I think it's a vital part of being real with others, like I say I want to be. I can't fuss about someone else's life being shady, when no one knows much about my own.

7. Really study God's Word. I try to read my Bible every day, but I would be lying if I said I really knew what those words meant half the time. I know I have taken His words out of context many times, and that is irreverent and irresponsible of me. I need to go deeper and always be intentional about what I read.
8. Get uncomfortable. That's the title of my Bible study right now, and I want it to stick. I don't want to miss out on opportunities to be where God is at work. I want to be His hands and feet.
9.Do new things. I like to do new things. It's not always an uncomfortable thing for me. But I think it is necessary for my growth. It's just something I have to resolve to do.
10.Spend more time in prayer for others. I can be such a selfish pray-er.
11.Use the gifts God has given me in a tangible way every day.
12. Weekly Scripture memorization. I have fallen down in this area over the past year. This is so necessary.

Well, that's all. Nothing too astonishing. Maybe I gave you some ideas to add to your resolutions? Remember, every day is a new start. It's a long time until 2010.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Happy New Beginning!

Welcome to the New Year! With graduation, Christmas, and New Years behind me, my life as I once knew it is starting to fade quickly in the background. It’s scary, but I’m doing whatever I can to look positively at the new phase of life in front of me.

I really love making New Year’s resolutions. I’m sure part of it is my strange love for making lists, and part is that it feels good to look at all the things I could do and be and imagining myself as this better person. The other part is the refreshing feeling of getting to start over. Of course, you can start over every day, but something about a new year seems full of endless possibilities. I don’t have to be anything that I was in 2008.

I’ve been on the ball with it this year in kind of a backwards way. Usually, I write them down then come up with a plan of attack before stepping into the war zone. This year I went straight to work doing things that I needed to get done and pulling the lists together in my head. Of course I will write it all down in the next few days, but my busy and motivated self is content to doing and being for the moment without paper and pen. I promise to share as soon as I do.

God is a God of new beginnings. The death of His Son signaled the ultimate in new beginnings and is waiting now to offer you yours. Talk about a clean slate!