Sunday, November 26, 2006

birthday happiness

I know that I haven't written in quite a while. Ok, try two months. Honestly, I've just been busy with life. I guess that's a good thing, but I also haven't really stopped to process much. I'm doing that now, if every so quickly and shortly.

I love my friends. Yesterday (Sat) was a really bad day and I kept having this feeling that my birthday was going to be just as horrible. I was wrong. Thank you to everyone who came out to dinner and to Lillian's this evening. You have no idea how special that made me feel. Thank you to all of you who left comments for me and sent me emails. I am truly blessed. Thank you for making this probably the best birthday that I've had in these 27 years.

Grace & Peace

Monday, September 25, 2006

first day!

So, here I am. Today was my first day at my new job. I'm still here. I survived. I actually had a pretty good day. I learned a lot. Hopefully I'll remember some of it tomorrow. To end my happy first day of work, I cooked arroz con pollo and had a glass of sangria. It was wonderful. I danced around the kitchen to Frank Sinatra. I's cheesy, but I did. I think Sophie was laughing at me. Sophie is the dog that I'm watching. I'm staying at a friend's house while she and her husband are out of town. It's fun having "my own place" for a week. I have a great dog to keep me company, a big kitchen to cook in, not to mention that the fridge is covered in pictures and magnets of my favorite city! (It helps that they're from Franklin, I guess!) So, yeah. There aren't a whole lot of ways that this day could have gone better. Well, maybe I can think of a few, but not many. I promise to write more. I need to get into a good rhythm now that I'm truly a "working woman." Until next time...

Grace and Peace!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

in Christ alone...

In Christ alone my hope is found
He is my light, my strength, my song
This Cornerstone, this solid ground
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm
What heights of love, what depths of peace
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
My Comforter, my All in All
Here in the love of Christ I stand

In Christ alone, who took on flesh
Fullness of God in helpless babe
This gift of love and righteousness
Scorned by the ones He came to save
'Til on that cross as Jesus died
The wrath of God was satisfied

For every sin on Him laid
Here in the death of Christ I live

There in the ground His body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory
Sin's curse has lost its grip on me
For I am His and He is mine
Bought with the precious blood of Christ

No guilt of life, no fear of death
This is the power of Christ in me
From life's first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny
No power of hell, no scheme of man
Can ever pluck me from His hand
'Til He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I'll stand

By Keith Getty, Stuart Townsend

This has been my song today. It's not as if it's a new song to me, but for some reason it stood out today.I was listening to WOW this morning as I got ready for work and all I know is that I had to bring the CD with me in the car and listened to it on the way to work because I needed to keep it fresh in me. The bolded lyric above is something that we've been talking about in Refuge (college ministry) on Sunday nights and then discussed tonight in our Discipleship By Grace group (a.k.a. The Dirty Dozen) It is such a powerful thought, an overwhelming thought, a beautiful thought. And to think that it was done out of pure love. Not manipulative, human love, but pure sinless love. We are truly blessed.

I'm off to Daytona with the college group tomorrow. Tomorrow starts my vacation!!!! I'm a free woman for a little over a week!!! Today was my last day at Hallmark and I start at Shelby, Medina, and Stargel on the 25th. Alright, I'm off to pack so that I can get everything done in the morning before I leave!!

Grace & Peace!

Thursday, September 7, 2006

new beginnings...

So, I go up to Mitchell's to have lunch today and I run into my wonderful friend, Mo. She and I decided to eat lunch together and while we were doing that, I got a job!! That's right! This afternoon, I was offered the job that I interviewed for 2 weeks ago. I am soooo excited! Lunch was really good too. I'm really glad that we had a chance to sit and talk for a while. I think that we both needed it. I got some good reading in this afternoon too. I'm reading Seeing And Savoring Jesus Christ by John Piper. Great book. Just wish that I could make it all sink in more.

Apparently, I'm not doing as well as I thought I was doing earlier this afternoon. My attitude sucks and I don't want it to. The thing is, I don't know how to separate myself from the problem. I've had LOTS of experience with this, so you think that I would know how to by now. But, I don't. Well, tomorrow is another day. It's my last Friday night at work, so that should be fun. I actually am only closing 2 more times. Weird. I'm going to go to bed now and try to think or not to think. I'm not sure which is best. I was going to write more from Piper and Chambers, but I'll have to elaborate more on that tomorrow.

Grace & Peace!

Wednesday, September 6, 2006

another day...another post...

So, what have we learned today? Not to smack your thumb on everything when it's infected? No, wait, we should have learned that one, but we didn't. I did learn that walking downtown is fun. Alison and I walked from our apartment all the way downtown to the street by Mitchell's and the church and then walked back via the lake. We laughed. We sang. No rain songs this time. It wasn't raining. We did try to come up with songs with the word Tennessee as we were walking down Tennessee St. I came up with "Rocky Top" thanks to Gretchen! Anyway...not too much in the way of excitement today. Still haven't heard anything on the job. I'm going to take care of that in the morning since I have the day off. Say some prayers for me! Hopefully, it will be a good day!! Until tomorrow!

For real! I'm keeping this thing updated, folks!

Tuesday, September 5, 2006

singin' in the rain...

I went for a walk in the rain tonight. I loved it. I'm not sure if Alison enjoyed it as much as I did. It's something that I've wanted to do for a while, but haven't done. Tonight was the night. It was wonderful. It was a pretty steady drizzle. We weren't out for very long, maybe 5-10 minutes, long enough to walk around the church parking lot cater-cornered to our apartment. I was singing and dancing in the rain. And yes, that was the song that I was singing. How can you not sing "Singin' In The Rain" when you are literally singing in the rain?! So, there I was, singing the song when I realized that I really couldn't sing all of it without feeling weird, considering the whole motive behind Gene Kelly's bursting into song. (For those who don't know, when he sings it, he has just left his new love and is so in the moment, he wanted to walk home to stay in the moment, eventhough it was raining. End of lesson.) This is where I noticed the difference. His mood made him sing in the rain. I needed to sing in rain to help change my mood. It made me realize that I want to be at that place where it doesn't matter what my mood is, I can sing and dance in the rain or in the sunshine, as long as I'm singing and dancing with joy in my whole being.

The last few days in My Utmost For His Highest, Oswald Chambers has been talking about sacrifice, letting go of blessings, and missionary existence. Of course he has been! Here I am, trying to see and know what my mission in life is, what His vision for my life is. And what is the sermon series that we just started entitled? Oh, right: "A Vision Worth Dying For." Vision. Mission. Sacrifice. Refocus. These are the words of change, words worth meditating on. Once again, I don't know what He's doing with me, but I know that He's doing something.

Monday, September 4, 2006

the right questions ( apology...)

So, my attitude needs some work. Yesterday's post was pitiful. That's all that can really be said about it. I can't take it back, because that's how I felt. I was feeling hurt and humiliated yesterday. Should I have let it affect me as much as I did? Of course, I shouldn't have. Did I? Of course, I did. I can chalk it up to being a girl, but it goes deeper than that. It goes even deeper to the root of being human and flawed. Tonight I read several of my friend Kate's blogs, The Accidental Traveler, which I highly recommend to all of you. She is very insightful! She inspired me. She wrote a series of 3 blogs titled:"Jesus, tell me what I want." If that doesn't describe where I am, I don't know what does.

Apparently, it takes my hopes being taken to a very high place where things are looking promising and having them dropped from the top of that building, sent plummeting to the ground, in order to get to me to take my focus off of those hopes. Does that mean that I shouldn't have those hopes? No. Does it mean that I place too much value, time, and effort on those hopes? Absolutely. Would my time be better spent on something greater and more global? Now we're catching on!

My cry, my "motto," if you will, needs to become "Jesus, tell me what I want." I don't know what it is. I'm not anywhere close to knowing what it is. I know that He has placed a job opportunity in front of me that is looking very promising and tomorrow night I will find out if I have the job. This is a step in the right direction for me. This would free up my nights and weekends. I would have more time to spend in fellowship, which, to me, is ministry. Anything beyond that is a mystery to me. I don't know what it is that He has in store for me. I don't know where He is going to take me. That scares me. This has been a year of changes for me. Big changes. Life-altering changes. I am not the same person that I was one year ago. I am not the same person that I was six months ago. It's been five months since I broke up with Reagan. Five months since I decided that I was going to make Lakeland my home. Now, I don't know if Lakeland will be my home. I plan to stay here as long as He would have me stay here, but I don't know how long that will be.

Everything is relative to His Will. I know that He has a ministry for me. I know that I am being equipped for that ministry now. I am so thankful to be starting "Discipleship By Grace" with Ted and Tricia and the other girls from church. That doesn't tell me what He has for me, though. I can't even begin to fathom what it would be. Will it involve my love for music? Will it involve my love for kids? Will it involve my desire to travel? These are the questions that fill my head. These are the questions that should be driving me to find the answers. Why do I let them get pushed aside by the other questions, such as: Who will I marry? When will I get married? When will I get to be a mother? Those are all great questions, but should not be placed ahead of: What is my purpose and ministry while here on this earth?

All I have now are questions. I need to read and sleep and think some more on this. Stay tuned, my friends. I plan to delve further into this mystery of mine.

Grace & Peace

Sunday, September 3, 2006

then again...

Ok, anyone else feeling like an idiot today? Just checking. I am. I'm sure it will pass, but right now, that's basically what it feels like. I'm just ready for a new day.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

here we are again...

Oh dear. What is wrong with me?! I'm sitting here watching the "Love, Daisies, and Troubadours" episode of Gilmore Girls. Again. Only the first time today. Actually, only the first time in over a month, but I always come back to this episode. It's the episode where Max proposes to Lorelai with 1000 yellow daisies.

It should be magical. There should be music playing and romantic lighting and a subtle buildup to the popping of the big question. There should be a thousand yellow daisies and candles and a horse and I don't know what the horse is doing there unless you're riding it, which seems a little over the top, but it should be more than this.

Sigh. I'm such a girl. And then there's Rory's speech:

Because sometimes you have something you need to say, but you can't because the words won't come out or you get scared or you feel stupid, so if you could write a song and sing it you could say what you need to say and it would be beautiful and people would listen and you wouldn't make a complete idiot out yourself, but all of us can't be songwriters, so some of us will never be able to say what we're thinking or what we want other people to know that we're thinking, so we'll never get the chance to make things right again ever.

Needless to say, that area of my life hasn't really changed much. The rest is a little more interesting. I interviewed for 2 jobs last week. Yeah, I know. I should be hearing about one of them after Tuesday. I'll keep ya'll posted. Seriously, I will. I promise. I will write.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

richard...what's happening?

I'm not really sure what's happening these days. Alison and I moved into our new apartment 2 weeks ago. We like it. It's homey. All we need now is a small dining room table. We've got happy candles all around and pictures on the wall. I've been working a lot. Mostly at night, which isn't all that much fun. I'm still looking for other jobs, but none are exactly jumping out at me as THE JOB. In other news, guys are really weird. That's pretty much all I have to say about that. I can't figure them out. Seriously. They're a mystery. Some more than others. One especially. *sigh* And life goes on. Anywho, I figured that I hadn't blogged in a while, so I probably should. I guess life just really IS that boring right now. Maybe there will soon be excitement, but I wouldn't count on it.

Thursday, July 6, 2006

why i don't like packing

I'm remembering part of the reason that I don't like packing. I am a pack rat. I know it. I embrace it. I'm not crazy about it, but I embrace it none the less. And since I live in a small apartment, I still have a lot of things that remain in boxes until I need them. I've been going through said boxes tonight. I found stuff that I forgot about. I through a lot of stuff away. I filled 3 garbage bags. It was rough. Really rough. I threw away all of the wedding magazines that I've had since 2002 when I first started planning my wedding. Figured I should throw them out since I'm not having one. I found a lot of the manilla envelopes that Reagan would send me with funny things written for each of our middle names. All of them were thrown away. I finally packed up an "ex-boyfriend box" with some of the things that he'd given me and his letters. There's something that I thought that I'd never do. I have an ex-boyfriend box. Wow. So, yeah...that's been my night. Mo, you have any of that Chocolate Trinity ice cream left?! I could really use some right now.

Monday, July 3, 2006

not as planned

Well, my trip didn't exactly go as planned. I didn't make it to McKay's Used Books in Chattanooga, but I did find this great store just north of the FL/GA state line that had a bunch books, most Christian titles, for really cheap. We're talking I bought Blue Like Jazz, Through Painted Deserts, and Searching For God Knows What by Don Miller, The Wisdom of Tenderness by Brennan Manning, and Seeing and Savoring Jesus Christ by John Piper for $3.99 each. And the Piper book is a hard cover. What in the world? So, that was cool. What was NOT cool was getting stuck in Atlanta rush-hour traffic. I guess it was more like "I hope you're not in ANY kind of rush, because traffic isn't going to move" hour. By the time I hit Chattanooga it was dark and raining. I only drove as far as Monteagle, TN, which is pretty much on top of a mountain. I love TN. The next morning I drove through Nashville and waved...and bought coffee at Starbucks. I kept driving until I hit WI at 7:00. Then I booked it to Waukesha since I was supposed to be there at 7:30 for the bachelorette party. I pulled in at 8. Don't ask how fast I was going. I'm not really sure.

The wedding was pretty standard. Nothing too exciting to report. I got to hang out with two of my best friends, Ryan and Erica, who I hadn't seen in two years. It was pretty sweet. On Sunday I did drive down to Greenville and as soon as I pulled into town I ran into the Wattersons. That was really great. I wasn't sure how the boys were going to react to seeing me, but they ran two houses down to where I was parked and hugged me. When Nicholas found out that I was going to be in town for 2 days, he asked if I was going to come and babysit both days. Too cute! And Christopher is WAY too big. He's supposed to be tiny. That's how I'll always remember him! But nooo, he's starting kindergarten in the fall and Nicholas is starting 3rd grade!

I then continued on to the Ritter's house. As I pulled up to the house, I saw two of my best friends "hiding" behind a tiny tree near the house. They then snuck to another very tiny tree near my car and hid again. I love my friends. I played along and pretended not to see them and then to be surprised. It's nice to just be able to pick up where you left off. Michael, Stacey, Kristen, and I all had dinner and brownies...lots of brownies. Michael went to bed since he had to be up early and Stacey, Kristen, and I watched college videos. We watched our soph. year choir video, then our senior slide show from Jr/Sr, and then lastly the OTHER video from the England tour. (That's what it was's all the touristy stuff and the choir being silly as opposed to the concert video) I still need to get a copy of the England videos. We stayed up way too late. Monday, Stacey and I started the day off with coffee from Jo's Java. We talked for a while and then I went up to the church to visit Kristen and to see Tina Watterson. Kristen and I met Michael and Stacey for lunch and then I headed to the Wattersons to see the boys. Eric ended up having to run an errand, so he suggested that I take the boys on a walk to the park. I miss walking to the park. Apparently, I miss walking altogether, 'cause I was feeling it. I guess I really haven't been exercising much at all lately.

After convincing the boys that I really did have to leave and that I would come back more often than every 2 years, I went to have dinner with Michael, Stacey, Kristen, Ryan, and Erica. We decided that we needed to go to Mario's because it had been way too long since I had Mario's pizza. Funny thing is, Mario's in closed on Monday nights, so we ended up at Chang's. The fabulous dinner buffet was then followed up by brownies and a game of Apples to Apples at the Ritter's. Ryan, Erica, and I all stayed there Monday night. Tuesday, the 3 of us went to Jo's for coffee and then got a brief tour of the new additions to campus by Ryan Giffen. I went with them to visit a friend of theirs and then we went to Mike and Chrisy's house so they could all go to Six Flags without me. It was fine, though, because I got to see Anne and Ty one more time before I left. (Anne was the flower girl in Emileigh's wedding.) After one more stop to see Kristen and to see Stacey, I headed out of town.

I hit Nashville at around 6:30 and stopped to get dinner and coffee for Jayar and Shimmy at the WAY-FM studios. I hung out with them for a little while and they let me pick out a ton of great CDs. I was so excited. I'm still excited about them. I got David Crowder*Band's A Collision, Chris Tomlin's Arriving, Shane and Shane's Clean, WOW Worship: Aqua, and Jennifer Knapp Live, not to mention The Polar Express. Too much fun!! After hanging out for a while longer, I decided I should get going. The problem was, I couldn't get ahold of Brenda. For some reason, we were never able to reach each other. So, I ended up driving about an hour or so to Manchester, TN to spend the night. This was probably better anyway, since I would have had to get up even earlier on Wednesday morning to drive that extra little bit.

Wednesday was beautiful. I got to see Chattanooga in full effect, all sunny and gorgeous. I made a little detour up Lookout Mountain, but didn't make it all the way to the top because a Wide Load truck had some problems with one of the tight curves near the top. That was sad, since I really wanted to go up there, but I made the best of it and cranked David Crowder as I drove down the steep turns of the mountain. I discovered that "You Are My Joy" is not only a great night driving song (especially for steering wheel drumming), but is also a perfect mountain descent song (with no steering wheel drumming...must keep both hands on the wheel!!!). This set me back a little bit, but it was worth it. I raced on through GA, stopping just before the FL state line again to revisit the little book store to get my friends all of Don Miller's books. After refueling, I didn't stop again until I pulled onto Mo and Rebecca's street for our book study.

**I realize that this blog is getting very long, even for me, the rambling one, but I promise that I'll wrap it up soon.**

Now that I'm back home I've hit a plateau. I was very excited to be coming home because for the first time in a long time I feel like I have a home. And I am happy to be home, it's just that I'm back and I still don't know what I'm doing. Everything is pretty much squared away with the new apt. situation, but I still don't know if I want to look for another job. I'm somewhat content being single, but I really would love to have someone to share things with. And not just anyone. I don't want to just find A guy. I want to find MY guy. I want to find the person that makes me a better person. I want to find the person that appreciates the things that I appreciate. I know, I know...I'm a broken record these days, but with hearing about weddings and attending a wedding these past few weeks, it starts to wear thin. And unfortunately, most guys don't seem to be the brightest bulbs in the pack. Ok, that's not completely true, but it feels true. I mean seriously, how hard is it to find someone that fits the qualities that I listed in my last entry? Apparently, it's going to be harder than I thought.

Right now I'm just tired. And I don't want to pack up the apartment. And I should really go to bed. I'm glad that I've finally typed this all out. It's interesting how when something is bugging me, I usually can't write. It's only when I admit what's bothering me that I can actually pour myself and my thoughts out. So, there you have it. Hope it was worth reading. If not, you'll get over it. I love you all!!

Grace & Peace

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

thoughts before i leave...

I'm sitting here waiting for my clothes to finish and for my CDs to finish loading onto my computer and figured that I should use my time wisely. I've been meaning to write the last few days. I've had a lot of things on my mind. One is the fact that this would have been my 4-year anniversary this week. And to top it all off, I'm going to be in the exact same places on the same days that I was when everything happened 4 years ago. Everything was centered around Erica's wedding, which is the same place that Emileigh is getting married this weekend. I'm trying not to get sad and all, but it slips in every now and then. I think most of all, it's just made me feel lonely and long for a real relationship. It's made me think of what I am actually looking for in a relationship. And so, I've started a list. I'm looking for someone who:

  • Is a strong Christian

  • Live in the same city (seriously, this is really a big one right now)

  • Has a heart for ministry

  • Loves and wants to have kids

  • Loves music (bonus points if he can play music, but I'll settle for loving it!)

  • Can put up with my quirkiness (well, I AM quirky!)

  • Doesn't mind if I hang out with the girls every once in a while

  • Is confident in his faith and in being the spiritual head of the relationship

  • Is attractive (sorry...I'm not going to lie - I want a cute boy! My idea of cute is pretty widespread, though)

  • Wants to continue growing in his faith (in other words, knows that he doesn't know everything)

  • Loves me for me

  • That's not a lot to ask for, is it? I don't think so. I know that he's out there somewhere. Hopefully, he'll show up in Lakeland soon since this is where I am! (see 2nd "requirement". HAHA!!)

    But that will not be the case tomorrow. Tomorrow (or early Thursday morning) I will be heading off on a roadtrip. I'm spending the night Thursday in Nashville with my friend Brenda, who I haven't seen in pretty much FOREVER! Friday, I'll be up in Waukesha, WI for Emileigh's bachelorette party. Saturday is the wedding. Sunday I'll hang out there in the morning and then head down to Greenville to stay with Stacey and Michael. I'm spending all day Monday and Tuesday morning in Greenville and then heading back down to Nashville Tuesday night. Then it's back home to Lakeland on Wednesday, hopefully in time for our group on Wednesday night! (We're reading Don Miller's "Searching For God Knows What" and I don't want to miss it!!!) So, hopefully I will be updating on the way as long as I can find Free WiFi. What? I'm a WiFi whore and I know it. Ok, so that's all that I'm going to post tonight. I'll save some for the rest of the week. Good night all.

    Grace and Peace...

    Sunday, June 4, 2006

    music-filled week

    So, this is probably one of the best music weeks I've had in a LONG time. Not only did I finally receive my copy of Andy Osenga's "The Morning", but I also ordered and received Jill Phillip's new album "Nobody's Got It All Together" and the only other of Jill's albums that I didn't have, "God & Money". (I'm still not sure why I didn't have "God & Money", but I didn't) And as if that wasn't enough, Mr. Andy Peterson was playing a show this weekend just an hour away! This meant that I finally got my copy of Appendix A and I got to see and talk to Andy and Ben Shive! All in all it was definitely a "Square Peg" kind of week!

    This week I also helped Karis get ready for her photography show at Mitchell's. That was a lot of fun and hard work and though it felt like it was never going to actually reach a point of completion, it finally did. Other than that it's been a pretty boring week. Nothing to report really. As I told Lisa F. today on the phone, I think I actually had a negative drama week, which I guess is ok. Sometimes I kinda wish that I'd at least have a little drama. Not a lot, though. I don't want to be a drama mama. Just enough to feel interesting for a few minutes. (and Rachel, if you're reading this, I'm not saying that I want to be the "it girl", just a little less boring.) So, anyway...that's been my week. Here's to hoping that this week goes well. I really need to find us a place to live. I've got a few leads, but nothing set in stone. I need the set in stone part. It would also be fabulous if someone called and said, "Hey, we want to give you a nannying job and pay you lots of money!" Yeah, I'd be ok with that. Ok, now that I've started to turn sarcastic, I believe it's time to go.

    Grace & Peace!

    Monday, May 22, 2006

    everything glorious

    So, as I was driving home from Starbucks where I had a lovely chat with Karis and Lisa (and a brief, but also lovely chat with Laura!), I was listening to my new CD, Passion: Everything Glorious, which is from the Passion '06 Conference and I said to myself, "Self, why don't you own any David Crowder Band CDs?" and I had no response but, "Because apparently I'm an idiot." Yeah, that's basically all there is to it. I love the CD. We're talking that's basically all I've listened to since I bought it. This is really funny, 'cause I went in to look at sheet music and with the thought of buying the new Starfield album, which I bought, but haven't made it all the way through. (I'm sorry guys!!) So, yeah, I love the CD, but I especially love "Everything Glorious," "You Are My Joy," and "We Win." I was definitely jammin' (that's right, I said jammin') to "You Are My Joy" during the guitar solo when the syncopation comes in on the drums! That's what I love about driving at one can see you making a fool of yourself in the car playing steering wheel drums. So, yeah. I felt the need to share that so that you too can enjoy this great worship and musical experience.

    Thursday, May 18, 2006

    a thousand yellow daisies

    I'm watching:
    Gilmore Girls - The Complete First Season

    This would make my day:

    a thousand yellow daisies

    I'm just saying. Someday, I'd like to be where Lorelai is sitting. (Although I'd like things to go better than they did with Max)

    Monday, May 8, 2006


    Ok, so I promised pictures from the Parker Street Friendraiser dinner and here they are! Well, at least the ones that I'm in. That's all I've gotten to so far. (And by "gotten to", I mean these are the only ones that I've taken off of Karis' Flickr page and cropped) So, without further ado:

    me in pink!
    This is me after dinner before I went to change...for the first time (don't ask)

    me flowers and brian
    Here we have a blurry picture of me smiling and I'm really not sure what Brian is doing.

    This is only the second "band photo" that we've taken. Someday we'll actually pick up instruments together.
    From left to right: Karis, Kayla, Lisa, and Me

    Ok, there you have it!

    good stuff

    I've had a good weekend. Part of it was crappy, 'cause Karis got sick and we couldn't have our hoedown that we've been planning. We're still going to have it, though. We're just not sure when. I ended up playing Cranium up at Mitchell's instead. Yesterday was fun, though. Alison came to church with me and then we went over to James' (from Trinity, not Emileigh's James) house for a BBQ. I'm really excited to be meeting more people and getting to fellowship. We ate good food, talked about really gross medical things, listened to Brian play some hilarious Adam Sandler songs, and basically had a great time. As we left James', we got a call back on one of the apartments that we were interested in. We could go look at it in about an hour, so we decided to kill some time at Kohls. I love that store. I found 4 shirts on super-happy clearance! We looked at the apt, but they want to fill it now and we don't need it until the 1st of July. Anywho, so we came home and I got a nice little nap in before I headed over to Ted's for food and cards. We played 2 rounds of Big Kahuna. Guess who is the reigning Big Kahuna? That's's me. The one who never wins ANY games! It was flippin' sweet. So, yeah...great weekend. Great week, actually. I'll have some pictures up soon from the Parker Street Friendraiser Dinner last Thursday. Until then,

    Go under the mercy!

    Thursday, May 4, 2006


    I am a happy girl. Yes, I am girly and I'm happy. And that's all I have to say about that.

    And I love Andrew Peterson's The Far Country. Every time I listen to that album I am just so inspired. I mean, come on:

    I believe in the holy shores of uncreated light.
    I believe there is power in the blood.
    And all of the death that ever was, if you sat it next to light-
    I believe it would barely fill a cup.
    'Cause I believe there is power in the blood.
    ~Lay Me Down To Die

    It doesn't get much better than this folks. I'm sorry that I haven't written in a while. I've had a lot happen in the past month. We're talking A LOT. Those of you that read this often or know me from other various web-related spots might have noticed that my profiles have changed a bit. I don't really want to go into it much in this type of a forum, but I feel that I should at least mention it since its a pretty big deal. A month ago I broke up with Reagan. It was my doing and it was a pretty much peaceful ordeal, but there is always healing that has to come. I think that I'm doing pretty well, considering. I think a lot of my processing actually came before the fact, though, which kinda makes sense. So, there it is. There is the reason that my profiles now say 'single' on them - because I am. It's taking some getting used to, but I'm starting to like it.

    Ok, that's done and said. I think I'm going to go back to being girly again, 'cause I really like it. I promise that I will write more often now that I'm processed and all that jazz.

    Thursday, April 6, 2006

    why I wish I were a man...

    There are some times that I wish that I was a guy. This is one of those times. Let me tell you why. If I were I guy, I wouldn't hesitate to act on my urge to go for a walk at night and lay out somewhere and look at the stars. I love looking at the stars. As I finished reading "Through Painted Deserts" this afternoon at Mitchell's, I couldn't help but wish that I was doing the same thing that Don and Paul did. Don talks a lot about the stars. I don't know...maybe it's a bit too much for me to drive around in a van with only the things that I have with me, but it's something to think about. Could I handle that? They experienced such beauty in God's creation and had His grace extended to them so many times through willing servants. If you haven't read this book, I highly recommend it. I'll even lend it to you after I get it back from Karis, who has already asked for it. So, there it is: why I wish I was a man. You can go look at the stars without fear of being assaulted or abducted.

    Monday, April 3, 2006

    Reality sucks

    Why can't I do the thing that I need to do? I've talked about it with other people and I know that I need to, but I still haven't done it. I am such a tool. No, seriously. I am. The half a dozen people who know what I'm talking about could probably chime in right here and agree. So, here I sit, still awake, still not doing it. I've sat and stared for what seems like forever and still didn't do it. I'm only prolonging the inevitable. Yes, it's not going to feel good. I need to get over that part. Of course, writing about it solves nothing, but it at least gets it out of my head for a few minutes. I just want it to all go away. But I can't do that. Things don't work that way. As the Walgreens' commercials say, "We don't live in Perfect," so I guess I need to live in reality. Reality sucks.

    A Happy Little List

    I'm going to take a cue from Mr. Andy Osenga on this one:

    Things that have made me smile recently:
    (in no particular order)

    1. New friends
    2. The little boy who walked up to me at work (at Hallmark) and gave me a hug before he walked out with his family
    3. Playing my guitar
    4. Doing cartwheels in Munn Park
    5. Getting to use a sweet camera (thanks Omar and Lisa!)
    6. Hearing my guitar played by someone who can REALLY play it (Omar!)
    7. Coffee
    8. Great local music
    9. "Spastic Butterfly"
    10. Photo booth pictures
    11. Worshiping at my new church
    12. "Racetrack" and "7-11" runs
    13. Alison's family coming to visit
    14. Talking about forming a band ;-)
    15. Long talks at Starbucks
    16. Finding common musical interests (obscure ones at that!) with new friends
    17. Making mix CDs for friends (let me know if you'd like one too! They're fully personalized!)
    18. Don Miller's "Through Painted Deserts"
    19. Beautiful pictures (Karis!)
    20. Driving around Lake Hollingsworth and Lake Morton with the windows down, sunroof open, and the music really loud
    21. Listening ears
    22. Quoting Gilmore Girls...constantly
    23. Pie
    24. New music by fun people
    25. Erica!
    26. Dancing around the apartment to "Born To Fly"

    Monday, March 27, 2006

    it smells like autumn

    My apartment smells like autumn. I love it. I have three candles lit right now: Hallmark's Spiced Cider, a Yankee Autumn Wreath, and the most fabulous thing ever: a Woodwick Candle in Pumpkin Butter. It has a wooden wick, hence the name, so it sounds like a fire in a fireplace. It's pretty sweet. So, I've got candles lit and I'm sitting here in my living room listening to Damien Rice's "O." I love this CD. I love that it is full of strings. I also love Lisa's harmonies. Of course, that always makes me want to sing. *sigh* It feels like autumn outside too. Karis and I have talked several times about how much we love autumn. I don't know if it's because I'm a November birthday or what, but it is definitely my favorite time of the year. I miss living where there was at least some idea that it was October.

    Emileigh and James are up in Wisconsin. Alison's family is down and they all went to Pompano Beach. That leaves me all alone. It's kinda nice. I'm not going to lie. I wouldn't be sitting in a dark apartment with candles lit and Damien singing to me if anyone else was here. Now all I need is some coffee. I did have some today, though. I ran up to Mitchell's and was almost late for work. Ok, actually I WAS late for work: 4 minutes. I also drank the entire 16 oz cup in the 10 minutes that it took me to get from downtown to the mall. That's right; I am officially becoming a coffee junkie. Lorelei would be proud of me. "Coffee, coffee, coffee!"

    Well, I think I might actually go to bed at a decent time. Or at least do some reading or something. I'm still trying to finish: "Through Painted Deserts : Light, God, and Beauty on the Open Road" by Don Miller. I have a hard time reading that book because it makes me want to get in a car and just drive off. I love that and hate that. That's life, I guess.

    Sunday, March 26, 2006

    really random

    A few random thoughts and observations...

    If it weren't for Strawberry Pop-Tarts, I would probably starve. I really like coffee and have probably had more in the last few weeks than in the two months prior. I am making more friends and doing more fun things than I think I did when I was in college. (Which is I that much more confident in myself now? 'Cause I don't feel like I am!) I really want to play music and/or sing more often. I need more sleep. I love my new friend! (you know who you are...) And now I have to go to Orlando to see the fam...

    Grace & Peace!

    Friday, March 3, 2006

    doubting thomas

    I love this song. I've been listening to it a lot lately. Yes, I'm doing the "one-song-on-repeat" thing again. It's from Nickel Creek's album "Why Should The Fire Die", which is absolutely fabulous! If you don't have it, you should get it.

    what will be left when i've drawn my last breath
    besides the folks i've met and the folks who know me?
    will i discover a soul-saving love
    or just the dirt above and below me?

    i'm a doubting thomas
    i took a promise
    but i do not feel safe
    ...oh me of little faith.

    sometimes i pray for a slap in the face
    then i beg to be spared 'cause i'm a coward
    if there's a master of death,
    i bet he's holding his breath
    as i show the blind and tell the deaf about his power

    i'm a doubting thomas
    i can't keep my promises
    'cause i don't know what's safe
    ...oh me of little faith.

    can i be used to help others find truth
    when i'm scared i'll find proof that it's a lie?
    can i be lead down the trail dropping bread crumbs
    to prove i'm not ready to die?

    please give me time to decipher the signs
    please forgive me for time that i've wasted

    i'm a doubting thomas
    i'll take your promise
    though i know nothing's safe
    ...oh me of little faith.

    There are just so many things that are so true in here. In the sermon last week, the pastor talked about how if we were doing good, but not in the name of Jesus, we were essentially helping the cause of the Enemy. He said that Satan is not "pro-Satan", but rather "anti-Christ". He'll do anything to keep us from bringing our focus back to Christ. I love the line "if there's a master of death i bet he's holding his breath as i show the blind and tell the deaf about his power". I think that's what got me to put it on repeat in the first place and now I'm just in love with the song. Just thought I'd share. I'm off to get ready for work now. Have a beautiful day!

    Thursday, March 2, 2006


    Well, folks, I finally did it. I played at Open Mic Night tonight at Black and Brew. I almost chickened out, but I had already told people and they were actually going to come and hear me play. 5 people from my Bible Study came out and one person brought a friend. Lisa & Omar, Kim & Chris, and Yadira & her friend, Karen, all came (Chad, Yadira's husband was at baseball). It was fun! Very nerve-wracking, but fun! I did 3 songs: "Clay & Water" by Margaret Becker (shout out to Roz!), which I have practiced for 4 and 1/2 years and have never played outside my room, "Peace Child" by my good friend, Erik Wieder (that's right Lynchpyn fans...I'm sure you remember this song! And of course, you know this one too, Dan!), and "I Hope You Dance" by LeeAnn Womack. I did ok. There were some wrong chords and wrong words, but in all it went alright. I think that the biggest thing for me was that my friends actually showed up to hear me. Granted, I talked Omar into playing a few songs as well, but they were going to be there regardless. (By the way...Marissa actually booked Omar for a spot on Friday, March 31st!!) When I played last year with the band over at Jammin' For Jesus, my parents, the girls that worked at the shop, and like maybe 5 other people were there. And the 5 people were the other bands playing that night. It was pretty sad. The fact that I have people who are willing to support me is huge. I was kinda bummed that my roommates weren't going to come, but when I saw everyone else there on the couches, it made it a little easier. I need to keep doing this so that it gets easier. My stomach was in knots the entire time. I'm sure that the more I do it, the less the knots will take over. At least I hope so. Well, I suppose I'm done for the night. I've already done quite a bit of rambling. Until next time...

    Grace & Peace!

    Sunday, February 26, 2006

    Invisible Children

    So tonight I went to Trinity Presbyterian's College & Career group, Refuge, and we watched the video "Invisible Children." I don't even know what to say. I knew that Emily Hagar wrote about it last week on her blog. She had a link to another blog, which I also read. I couldn't have prepared myself for actually seeing it though. (go to My heart just went out to those kids. I wanted to pick them all up and just hold them and love them. There are too many things running through my head now. What can I do? How can I help? What sort of influence do I have? Is there something I could wrangle together musically, like an album supporting the cause or something to that effect? The problem with that is making sure that it isn't some cheesy album or something that is going to do more harm than good. (you know what I mean...some "cause albums" are mocked, rather than supported) I really need to think on this and see if I can't come up with some sort of plan. Now I have something to think about this week.

    Finding Friends

    I'm listening to:Things You Can\'t Stop With Your Hands

    You never know where you're going to find a kindred spirit. They really aren't as scarce as you think. I've found several as of late:

    There is Kate, my "engaging" friend from Seattle who loves reading and music and brings some of the most thought-provoking questions to the table.

    There is Roz, another "engaging" friend in Croatia. She and I have not only worked at the same places, but both studied voice.

    And now I've found a new friend here in Lakeland - Karis. She and I had a fun lunch talk at Crispers about church and art. Then tonight I went to the college and career group with her and then to the house that her parents are going to remodel, but haven't started yet. It's like a little studio where she can go and paint, sew, and write, etc. You know, basically exactly what I've been looking for!

    God brings people into our lives for a reason and at the exact time that they need to be there. I love that.

    Tuesday, February 21, 2006


    I'm wish that I were listening to Wreck of the Day, but I just have the songs stuck in my head...need to buy this album!

    Well, apparently I've been inspired the last few days. And I guess I really have. This past week I found a really cool new place to read and drink coffee (They just opened on Thursday and I've been there 4/5 days that they've been open). The coffeehouse is called Black and Brew and it is located in downtown Lakeland, just off of Munn Park. Saturday night I went there to hear the group, well...half of the group, Pemberley. The girls of Pemberley played an acoustic set and they were really great. So inspiring, in fact that I pulled out my little journal and finished one song that I had started like months ago and wrote another. No music yet, just lyrics. Then Sunday I went to church at Trinity Presbyterian again. **side note**

    **The last two weeks I have gone to Trinity Presbyterian with my friends, the Medinas. I needed some time off from singing in the Praise Band at First Methodist and have been wanting to go there anyway. I have really felt the need to not be up in front, worried about how my performance is and what people are thinking when I should be focusing on one thing and ONE thing only - GOD. I wrote this to a friend in an email last week:

    And as far as everything goes with praise band, yeah...I'm just burnt out. I feel like I'm there for the wrong reasons. I think that part of it stems from trying to learn everything in such a short amount of time. We are more focused on the musicality and the performance quality than the fact that we are worshipping. At least, that's the way I've been feeling about it. That coupled with people coming up to me after the service and telling me what a great job I did. I don't want to be up there to do a great job. I want to be up there to lead them into a time of worship, where it doesn't matter what anyone else around them is doing and most importantly, what the people in front are doing. I think the most worshipful leading experience I've had is our college Vespers service. There were no lights on, just enough to see our music up on the stage and even then, it was mostly candlelight. The idea was that we weren't the focus. The words and the offering up of the words were.

    So, that's where I am with that. I'm still not sure how long of a break I'm taking or if it will turn out to be a permanent one.**

    So, back to Trinity. I've had some really interesting connections since I went the first week. We were reading from 1 John 2:28-3:10 that week. I really got a lot out of the verses, as well as the process of looking at the verses that the pastor used during the sermon. Then Wednesday, Kim was leading Bible Study and taught on 1 John 4:4. The reason that she chose that verse was because her youth pastor had prayed that verse for her back when she was in 7th grade and it has stuck with her these 15 or so years. Well, that youth pastor is now the pastor at Trinity. Yeah. Exactly. Anyway, church was really a worshipful experience this week as well, which is a pretty big change for me. But the thing that I was really looking forward to was Sunday night...

    Sunday night I went to Orlando to see Don Miller speak. Don Miller has written the books Blue Like Jazz: Nonreligious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality, Searching for God Knows What, Through Painted Deserts : Light, God, and Beauty on the Open Road, and has a new book out - To Own a Dragon: Reflections On Growing Up Without A Father. I'll admit that I've only read "Blue Like Jazz" so far, but I loved it. He was speaking at a church that my friend Erik has been to a few times. (Erik and I grew up in Miami together. I've known him since my sr. year of high guy) The funny thing is that I've been to the church too, for a Derek Webb show about a year ago. It's also right down the street from my mom's office. So anyway, I go to the church and I find Erik and his friend and a few of her friends. We all sit on the front row, stage left. There end up being two available seats in the row just to the right of me. A girl comes up and asks if they're taken. We say no and she tells the person on the phone where she is and says she'll see her in a minute. Then her friend walks up and we just stare at each other for about a minute. Her friend is Heather Uhle. Heather and I have known each other since kindergarten and grew up at church together. We were on youth council and pretty much were at every youth event together. I haven't seen her since our old youth director, Andrea, got married almost 5 years ago and even then it was a "hi", "bye" kind of a situation. Apparently, that is her church! She teaches kindergarten and works with middle school girls at church. I looked at her and told her that she was Andrea! (our old youth director) I could not believe that I ran into her. Well, of course, we couldn't exactly catch up then since Don was about to speak!

    Don's talk was on Evangelism and he really had a lot of great things to say. I'm not going to go into all of them on here, especially because a lot of things are things that he touches on in "Blue Like Jazz". It was nice to hear some of the stories with all of the rest of the details. He's just such a real person. He talked to us as if he was talking a friend, bluntly and honestly. After he gave his talk, he did a Q & A session. This was fun. After that was over I talked with Heather a bit more, but it was getting late and I had to get home. On my way home I stopped at a Denny's off the interstate. While I was waiting for my Original Grand Slam, I had to run back out to the car to get my journal because more lyrics were popping into my head. Seriously! I know! I was so hungry at that point that I pretty much scarfed everything on my plate. Except my bacon, which I took 2 or 3 bites of when I realized that the rest of it wasn't cooked all the way. I didn't think anything of this until Monday morning when I woke up sick. That's right, folks - I had food poisoning yesterday. Fabulous way to start the week. I was supposed to go into work at 4 and work until closing at 9:30. I ended up just going in from 8-9:30. Good times. Today I am feeling better. Speaking of work, though, I should wrap this up since I'm opening in the morning and it's getting late. I'm glad that I finally got all this down in written form. It's been swimming in my head for too long. I know that there are things that I've missed. I'll have to come back to them tomorrow. But for now-

    Grace & Peace!!!

    Thursday, February 9, 2006

    rambling is what i do...

    rambling is what i do, so i think i'll do some. the sad thing is that i had typed half of this post and lost it, so now i have to retype it. grrr...

    so, today i took a trip by myself. i went to see warren barfield up in live oak. i left around 1:45 and took the back roads up. i started out listening to "sweet baby james" - james taylor, for those of you who weren't sure who that was. and if you don't know him, i seriously suggest that you go out and at least buy his greatest hits album: the best of james taylor, which is what i was listening to. after j.t. was finished, i listened to the new barlow girl album, "another journal entry" (thank you, jayar!!!), which was really great! next was avalon's new cd, "stand", which i saw them promoting a few weeks ago and was very impressed with. cd #4 was adam watts' "the noise inside", which i recently rediscovered. it has quickly become the cd that i must have with me because i never know when i'm going to want to listen to it. well, i can pretty much guarantee that i'll want to listen to it! the last thing i listened to before i hit live oak was starfield. i love those guys! so, i got to live oak and i grabbed some dinner really quick and then headed to the church. i knew that i was early, so i brought along my book and read for a bit out of "journey of desire". warren came out and was fabulous! i think that this is an acurate list of the songs...but don't quote me:

    my heart goes out
    pictures of the past
    trading my sorrows
    you inspire me
    beyond the walls
    10 hours

    i'm not sure about the order, but i think that was all of them. "10 hours" was my request. i got a quick chance to talk to warren after the show and then i headed back down to lakeland. music on the way home was the rest of starfield, warren's first cd, with "10 hours" on repeat a few times, and shawn mcdonald's "simply nothing" with "have you ever " on repeat quite a few times. that leads me to the rest of my post...

    as i was driving home, i realized that i need to stop daydreaming. when God wants me to do something, then i will do it. just because i want to be out singing and touring doesn't mean that it is something that He wants me to be doing right now. it doesn't mean that it will never happen, but i need to stop getting so down after i go to a concert. (especially because i love going to concerts!!) i guess my problem is that i see myself as a musician and when i'm not really singing and playing a lot, like now, i start to feel like i'm not doing something significant. i know that i am, though. my brain just likes to trick me into thinking that i'm not. so...while i was listening to "have you ever" the first time, i just started crying. that's when i realized the above things.

    so, yeah. this was my day, brought to you by the letter "h" and the number "8". maybe i'll actually start posting regularly again. (don't hold your breath, though!)

    Tuesday, January 3, 2006

    I'm not getting sick!

    Ok, I am NOT going to get sick! I feel like I'm getting sick, but this cannot happen. I'm tired enough as it is. (Which is probably why Im starting to get sick! Vicious cycle!!!) I am happy, though, because my roommate, Alison, is back home from Michigan!! She has been gone for 2 weeks and life was really starting to get boring without her randomness! We celebrated by going to Wal-Mart.

    I'm really enjoying the dialouge that is going on as we are reading together over at Engage The Journey. Lots of questions are being brought up and it's always great to hear other peoples' points of view on the Scriptures. I'm excited and it's only Day 3! Well, that's all. Just a short entry tonight.

    Go under the mercy!

    Monday, January 2, 2006

    The end of something...and the beginning...

    I took down our Christmas tree today. It seemed so sad as I was doing it. I always hate it when things are over, especially Christmas. I'm one of those people who can listen to "Christmas music" at just about any time of the year. I get excited about putting up decorations. I love the smells. I love the colors. I'm cheesy, I'll admit it, but it's just how I am! I really wasn't ready to take everything down because I never really completely entered into the season this year. I could try and blame it on the fact that I was working retail for the first time during the "mad season", but I'm sure that there is something more than just that. I've been on a plateau and apparently I contently set up camp there. This is where things change. I've been staring at the peaks in front of me for long enough and now I'm heading upward - further up and further in. See you at the top!

    Grace & Peace!

    Sunday, January 1, 2006

    Engage The Journey

    Hey friends! I just wanted to invite you on a journey through the Bible, chronologically, in a year. Best of all, it is a journey with friends! New friends, old friends - invite as many people as you like! Here is the link:

    splash page

    It's going to be an amazing experience. Come and join us!!!

    Grace and Peace!