Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Unexpected day off

   I called yesterday to see when I was suppose to go into work this morning and they told me that I was off today. 3 days off in a row? Worries me a little really but all I can do is find the joy in having another day off to relax and not drive to Little Rock again this week. I'll do that tomorrow.
     So what should I do with this unexpected day off?
     I have pancakes with my YL girls this morning.
     I will be at the high school later today during their lunch to pick up their Polar Bear Wknd deposits and forms.
     I am meeting with Heather later tonight.
     But what can I do with today?
     I can go puddle jumping. Antique shopping. Homework awaits (that's probably what I should do). Listen to a podcast. I could get a headlight for my car. I could write a book. I could read a book. I could finish my painting. I could start a new one. I could send a painting to a friend. I could read my bible all day. I could watch a movie. I could go to a movie (Footloose is out btw!). I could clean our club room. I could line dance in the club room. I could do Zumba in the club room. I could change the light bulb in our living room. I could run errands. I could learn to sing. I could watch CMT all day. I could learn to play the piano. I could get a piano.
     The point is this day was unexpected but I can either choose to worry about not getting my work hours today or trust with all I have in the Lord and find what He wants me to do with it. There is something I am suppose to do today. Someone I'm suppose to meet. But if I sit here and worry about why I have another day off I am never going find out.
     Good Morning God
     This is Your day
     I am Your child
     Show me Your way

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Easy Like Sunday Morning

     This is probably one of the best mornings I have had in a long time. I woke up naturally pretty early to the sound of the fountain, birds and my homemade wind chime outside my window while the sun rose across the Arkansas sky and started to reflect off the trees that have slowly started to change color. Even though it's the middle of October, here in the Ozarks it's still pretty hot. I was talking to my step mom this morning and she was saying that when she lived in this part of the country they would have thanksgivings and even some Christmas's that were still pretty warm. I am not sure how I feel about that for all I want to do is wear my boots, jeans and a big sweater with cider boiling on the stove.
     See, I am use to being cold. All the time. And while I miss it, I know that I can't live in what I use to be. I have fears and doubts about being here sometimes but I do love it. I love the south and my girls and my friends and my job and why God brought me here but for now all I know I can do is love what is outside my window. This morning was so peaceful. It was one of those mornings where all I wanted to do was run outside with a cup of coffee and sit on a rocking chair on the front porch. Problem being is that I don't have a rocking chair and am debating using my piggy bank as a rocking chair fund. I want the ones from Cracker Barrel. The old southern home style chairs that you can sit in for hours with a cup of coffee or a jar of sweet tea. There is just something about those chairs that draw you in and make ya wanna stay for a while.
     In a little bit I will be heading to church and then crafting all day til I go to FAD with one of my YL girls and YL leadership after that. This is the first real "day off" I feel like I have had in a long time. Monday's are a day off from brewin' the good stuff at Sbux but they are our Young Life day. Nothing about that is bad, it's just a lot and not a "day off." Last Sunday I covered a shift at the Maumelle Sbux and while I was so thankful for another shift to make some extra money. I am so thankful for today and easy mornings like this.
     This Sunday is a day of rest. This Sunday is easy and relaxing and a day to worship and enjoy God in all His glory. I wish every morning could be an easy Sunday morning.

Saturday, October 15, 2011


     So this post may or may not be inspired by a best friend of mine that is currently on the other side of the country because well... that's where she lives. I love her dearly and I wish I could be dancing with her right now at a country bar.  But regardless here is it.
I am... 22 years old and have lived in 4 states, 10 different "houses," and gone to 7 different schools.
I dream of traveling the world .....but long to become rooted in a community.
I day dream about falling in love .....but am scared out of my mind for relationship.
I crave attention .....but wish the same people would leave me alone.
I work 35+ hours a week .....but have always had a problem with keeping enough money to just survive.
I appear spontaneous and fun..... but need routine and structure and get thrown off when I don't have the same thing for breakfast everyday
I appear loud, silly and outspoken..... but have been watching the TV on mute all day.
I flirt and want my own prince .....but I don't trust men
I cry to my Father in heaven and rejoice in His love, grace, mercy and peace .....but sometimes choose the world over Jesus
I love being the center of attention..... but don't want people watching me.
Everytime I pass a mirror, or a reflective surface, I look at my self, fix my hair, pose and sometimes put on makeup just for sitting alone at home...... but criticize others for "trying to hard" and wearing too much makeup
I want people to notice me..... but I can't take a compliment
I want to be recognized..... but I'll never ask for a promotion
I wish sometimes someone would just do it for me..... but I never ask for help.
I love smiling..... but I hate my smile
I watch every video til I can quote it perfectly words, voice and body language.... I don't know what my real voice sounds like anymore
I secretly force myself to have a Southern twang..... but I protest every time someone tells me I do
I want a permanent dance partner..... but I never let the guy lead
I blog like I am the only one reading this and sometimes I wish it were true.... but I secretly wish everyone was reading it.
Learn to be vulnerable
"The Lord is close to the brokenhearted. He rescues those whose spirits are crushed."- Psalm 37:18

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Green Apron

     Yep that's right, about a month ago I got a job at Starbucks wearing that famous green apron. The funny thing is that I got the job in Arkansas after growing up in Seattle.... how's that for a switch!
     I have worked coffee before but I was still nervous in the beginning but slowly I must say, I love everything about it. I actually work in Little Rock, which everyone down here is so obsessed with the amount of driving that I do to get to work but think about it, I am use to a Seattle/Portland commute and getting to work in the morning is shorter than working at IKEA in Tukwila when I was in high school. For my Oregon friends... it would be like going to school at OSU and working in Albany, or dancing in Albany on a Thursday night :) yeah it's a drive but not really that bad.
     I love my store, the people I work with and my customers. I laugh everyday, it's so fun and time goes by so fast because we are so busy! I know my regulars already and seeing them everyday is so fun. Most of the time in the morning I work with all guys which is fun and keeps it interesting. They are all like my big brothers really. They help me, look out for me, and even fight off creepy customers who want to "know my story" if you know what I am saying. And with all that, turns out I am actually pretty good at what I do. I am usually on the drive through window but even during training I had people tell me that I was really impressive. I guess I'm a fast learner. I am not trying to brag but I'll admit it feels good to know that you are doing a really good job. You know what though, in all of that I only have one person to thank for it all, and if you know me at all you can probably guess what I am about to go into. God.
     "In everything you do do it for the glory of God." I typically need to be at work anywhere between 5:30 and 6:30 Tuesday thru Saturday. Sunday's I've been covering other stores, even though it's my day off and Monday's I have off for Young Life. But I leave the house 45min before I need to be there so I don't have to rush and I sit in my car and listen to music and continue to wake up before I clock in. Before that I get up usually an hour before I have to leave to make sure I have time to get ready, eat something and most importantly sit, read my bible and be with God even if it happens to be dark-thirty in the morning. It is so strange waking up at 4am but having time to be with God in the morning is so crucial and so worth it. There have been times where I was too tired and just got up with enough time to change and run out the door and I am telling you it makes so much of a difference! I'm awake and smiling in the morning and people notice it. My co workers have asked me how I am so happy in the morning and I just smile. I don't know a lot of them really well but most know I am a Christian and I am so excited to be able to share my faith and the glory of God while working in that green apron of ours. I mean it was Him that provided the job in the first place as soon as I got home from SharpTop Cove, why not use it as a ministry. Now that doesn't mean I go around shouting verses at them all day long. But they know there is something different about me that they haven't really seen before. If you are a follower of Jesus Christ, people should be able to tell. Not because you tell them so but because of how you act, what you say, how you work, your smile and the fruit that comes from being pruned by the vine dresser.
     They are great people and it's a great job and we have a great God!

A Tale of Two Weddings

Courtyard Reunion! We were missing some at this point but yep... at one time, we all lived together
      So I know I have been slacking but here is what I really went home for. Two of my greatest friends from college got married and I was honored to be there on their special day!

     The first one was Chris Zauner. He was the house director when I lived in the Courtyard and also my team leader for Crescent Valley Young Life in Corvallis. He has been like the greatest big brother I have ever had and I was so excited to be able to celebrate with him. Now he met Bri online and she is from Iowa so they actually got married there about 2 weeks before the Corvallis Reception but it was so much fun! It was like a big Courtyard reunion and I even got my friend to dance with me! A two step AND a swing! He hated it but that's ok :) If there is anyone I know that deserves to be this happy it's Chris and Bri is awesome! She actually has a little girl who had the cutest blonde hair I have ever seen and for a while all she wanted to do was dance with me. We tried to get Lily, one of my other friends little girl, to dance with us too but I don't think she remembered me. That's ok though I still love her :)
I have never seen Chris this happy.... and rightfully so! It was at the Benton County Fairgrounds and so fun and laid back. I got to see a ton of people that I use to live with at the Courtyard and a bunch of old faces from Grace City. That made me so happy. There is nothing like coming home.

I didn't get a lot of pictures from the wedding (I kinda forgot)... but I got some! Some are from Aubree Swalko
Rach, Aubree, Myself and Rene at the Zauner wedding

The girls and Steven at the Zauner wedding
Tallman, Butta and Bean

Bri and Z!

     The second one I had the privilege of standing next to one of my best friends as she devoted her life to her sweetheart! They are so in love it's disgusting but I love it! That was one of the best weekends ever. So many friends and we had a lot of time as a bridal party to just hang out with each other. The cool thing was too that the whole bridal party (well most) has been friends for a while now so again it was like another giant reunion that lasted all weekend in the beautiful Hood River, Oregon. Again I got to see one of the mountains that I miss so much. Mt. Hood and the Columbia River Gorge. Watching Hannah and Peter get married was so much fun and I am so happy for them. Hannah (or Banana as I call her) and I were roommates last year and spent a LOT of time together. Weather it was 9th and Circle Sunday After Church Adventures or snuggling together in each others bed as the other cried her eyes out because of a crappy day or a stupid boy, I will forever hold her friendship in my heart. Myself and Jill, another bridesmaid and dear friend, may or may not have cried a little on our way back to Corvallis from the wedding the next day. Jill and Hannah have been friends forever and she is another one who's friendship I love having. They are all so special to me.
The wedding was perfect. Small and homey with the mountain in the background and we had so much fun helping set up and make it perfect for our friends. You could see it in both the groomsmen and the bridesmaids that we were so excited for our friends and would do anything for them especially on this day of theirs. Now she's old and grown up and married and left me forever but I'm ok with that because she is in love and found a man who loves Jesus like nothing else in this world.  :)

These pictures from the Elliott wedding are a sneak peak of what happened and are from our friends and photographers Neil Abrew, Nick Anderson and Josh Miranda

Groomsmen and Peter

Hannah, Peter and Mt Hood

My beautiful friend!

Bridesmaids and Hannah

Rachel, Sarah and Me

Till the next new day

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Now or Later: A Seattle Family

     Most people think that I am originally from Oregon, and while I do love that state with everything that I have, I am a pure blood Washingtonian. (and just for clarification, because I get this question a lot.... it's Washington STATE, not D.C.) When I was home I was able to head back to the greater Seattle area in order to see my family. This is where I feel like I can really claim being able to say that I'm "from Seattle" because a lot all of my dad's side of the family technically lives in the Seattle city limits. Some right out side but around Lake Washington is good enough for me! Needlesstosay, when I am home I am in the city more than one may think. This side of the family is where I get my loudness and sass from too... well that and my mom's youngest sister... if you knew her you would understand (I love you Aunt Heidi! :) )

Me, my cousin and her brother
at her graduation
      It started with an awesome surprise for my cousin and grandma, and a fun game for me and my aunt. My cousin is getting married in June and I came with her mom to surprise her at one of her wedding dress shopping appointments! It was so fun and I got to see her and my aunt and uncle. I get to be a bridesmaid in her wedding too! We are the only two girls on that side of the family, and we are the oldest in front of 6 other boy cousins so it was really special to get to see her and I am so looking forward to spending that day with her and her fiance! It's about time they did this anyway! jk.... but seriously. It was so good to be able to see them and spend time with her and my aunt and my grandma. I got to spend the night at my grandma's house (Mimi) that night which was a great treat. I haven't seen her since I left and she has always helped me out in a lot of ways in my adventures in growing up. When we were little it was "Mimi's Day Care" for all the grand kids while our parents were at work. Special times :) 

     My dad and brothers came up a little while ago to finish her kitchen. This was a project that was started before my grandpa (Papa) died. It looks so good now! We even made tater tot casserole in her new kitchen! That btw is one of my favorite dishes in the winter time. It's cheap, easy, fills you up, keeps you warm and always reminds me of home. :) 

Jonas' Soccer Game
     The next day I was lucky enough to meet up with more family and watched my cousins soccer game in Seattle. My other aunt cracks me up. My dad has 4 brothers and sisters and all of them are pretty much something else. But I love them all. It was fun watching my cousin play though. Both him and his brother are getting so big! I mean granted they are 14 (i think) and 11 but for some reason I will always picture both of them like they were when they were 7. In my mind they are my LITTLE cousins but trust me... they are not so little any more! Somewhere in the mix of that I got my Mimi and my aunt hooked on White Mocha Americano's from Starbucks as well. They call me to tell me when they get one :)

     I love my family. Growing up everyone is annoyed with their family and get really embarrassed and at one point in time I did to. It was kind of funny watching my cousin who is a freshman in high school this year because he is totally at that stage. Everything is embarrassing and  he is too cool for school. But getting older I have learned and appreciated embracing the fact that my family is a huge factor in who I am and why. When my Papa died it killed me because it was in April and only a couple weeks before that I had just gotten back from a 11 day trip to the United Kingdom with Girl Scouts. He and my Mimi wanted to see pictures and hear about it and I kept putting off going to their house and always said, "I'll tell you later." Later never came. Now I have to wait til I see him in heaven before I can tell Papa about London. I don't want to wait that long gain. Your family loves you. Take time for them. Even if you're in high school and everything is embarrassing because I guarantee that when you are sitting in class with 400 other kids who are just as lost as you are and you are no longer anything to your professor than a 9 digit number..... you're going to wish "later" was now.
My Papa <3 

Til the next new day ♥ ,