Sunday, December 27, 2009

I'm moving!

So the more I have followed other people's blogs, the more I realize that I really like Tumblr better than Blogger. It has a lot more format options to customize your posts, so I'm converting. My new blog address is:

Come visit!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Obstacles Welcome

Obstacles Welcome
by Ralph de la Vega

This book tells the story of Ralph de la Vega as a Cuban immigrant. He came into this country when he was 10 years old completely alone. He lived with strangers for 4 years before the rest of his family joined him in the United States. De la Vega went on to get an education and become successful in the AT&T corporation.

I thought this book was awesome. It had some very good, practical success principles to follow that apply in any area of life. One of the principles that stuck with me the most is that of vision. Developing a vision and a plan to achieve it. There was also a lot of good information about leadership and how to inspire the people around you. I liked the book because de la Vega does not just give you some ideas that should work in theory. He tells you these success principles, and then gives you the real-life example of how he implemented it in his career and how it helped him to get to where he is.

I would definitely recommend this book, especially to those looking to move up in the corporate world. As I mentioned already, it gives solid principles to follow that are practical and easily applicable to just about any situation.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

For Good

This song is from the Wicked soundtrack, and it just might be one of my favorite songs ever. It reminds me that I have been so blessed to have made a few really close friends that have changed me for good. I didn't have the most friends, but the ones I had were definitely the best. =) Here are the lyrics.

I've heard it said
That people come into our lives
For a reason,
Bringing something we must learn.
And we are lead to those
Who help us most to grow
If we let them,
And we help them in return.

Well, I don't know if I believe that's true,
But I know I'm who I am today
Because I knew you.

Like a comet pulled from orbit
As it passes the sun.
Like a stream that meets a boulder
Halfway through the wood.
Who can say if I've been changed for the better?
Because I knew you, I have been changed for good.

It well may be
That we may never meet again
In this lifetime,
So let me say before we part:
So much of me
Is made of what I learned from you,
You'll be with me
Like a hand print on my heart.
And now whatever way our stories end,
I know you have rewritten mine
By being my friend.

Like a ship blown from it's mooring
By a wind of the sea.
Like a seed dropped by a sky bird
In a distant wood.
Who can say if I've been changed for the better?
But because I knew you,
(Because I knew you)
I have been changed for good.


Who can say if I've been changed for the better?
I do believe I have been changed for the better.
And because I knew you...
Because I knew you...
Because I knew you,
I have been changed
For Good.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Memories made and more to come.

A few weeks before our wedding, I had a dream (more like nightmare) that we were driving away from the wedding and I realized that I didn't remember anything that had happened. It was all just a big blank spot. Scariest thing ever when you're stressing about getting all of the decorations right, making sure everyone shows up on time, wondering if the photographer will get the right shots, etc, etc... Well, thankfully, that didn't happen. I remember a lot about that night. And since tonight marks the 2 year anniversary of that memorable night, I thought I was share with all of you what I remember. =)

-My bridesmaids were awesome throughout the whole process. They cut out and put together invitations and programs until they were blue in the face. lol. But I am very thankful b/c I never could've done it alone.
-Micah and half of the groomsmen showed up 45 minutes late for the rehearsal dinner. He's lucky I wasn't a bridezilla or I might've called it all off. lol.
-Gary, at the rehearsal dinner, with his unexpected variation of "Who gives this woman to marry this man?"
-For whatever reason, after we all got back to the house that night, I just had this random breakdown. I don't even remember what triggered it. I was working on the slideshow, trying to get the timing right. But I don't see why that would upset me. Maybe it was just all of the stress and anxiety building up. Whatever the reason, it happened. And the girls basically made me go to bed, and then let me sleep in the next morning as long as I needed to.
-All of the girls were supposed to go together to get our nails done that morning before heading to the church to finish decorating and getting ready. All but 2 backed out on me. And in my emotional state, it was a much bigger deal than it should've been. Micah had to come by and get something from me and when I went out to see him, he just let me cry. (He's good about that.) So Whit and Catey went w/me and we had fun, and I got over it. =)
-We ate McDonald's for lunch. We bout froze our toes off walking in and out in those little flipflop thingys they give you after you get a pedicure. lol
-The florist missed part of our order. The little things that our moms were supposed to carry their flowers in got left out completely. The florist was flipping out more than we were. So Daddy saved the day and told me and Mom, "if you want them, I'll go get them for you. Just tell me where." He was awesome. So he went down the road to another florist and got them. Yay Super Dad. =)
-Lauren and I went to the mall to get all of our rings cleaned around 2 or so. While walking through the food court, we saw those little trampoline things with the harnesses where you jump really really high. I'm pretty sure she kidnapped me and made me do it. lol. It was awesome though. Great for taking my mind off of all the stress. Although it hurts a lot more than you'd think. Those harnesses are NOT comfortable. lol
-My "something old" was my great great (great?) grandmother's 3 strand pearl bracelet. It was perfect. Matched the dress great. It broke. Like, an hour before the wedding. The clasp was loose, and it fell off. Pearls were everywhere. So here we all were, in our dresses, crawling around on the floor gathering up pearls. Of course, Dad (AKA MacGyver) had fishing line in the truck. And Alana had worked in a jewelry store. So they fixed it and saved the day once again.
-Micah took pictures with everyone first before I came down for us to have our "moment." I'm pretty sure I stood up there at the top of the stairs for like, 3 days. At least. It seemed like it at least.
-Joel acting like he forgot the ring when Gary asked for it.
-We wrote our own vows, but didn't memorize them. Probably because I didn't get it all in order and on paper until about 4 that afternoon. 2 hours before the wedding. lol. I had most of it in my head before then. But anyways. I had the paper wrapped around my bouquet during the wedding, and just had it folded up in my hand after I handed my bouquet off. Well...I didn't think through enough to figure out what I was going to do with the paper after we said our vows. I couldn't just hold this piece of paper in my hand while we exchanged rings and stuff. So I just put my arm by my side and dropped it. lol. Gary picked it up later and gave it back to me.
-My cheeks hurt so much from smiling by the end of the reception. I've never hugged so many people in my life. lol
-After the wedding, I could hardly catch my breath. In the video, you can see me just stop and take a huge breath every few
-So for those of you who weren't there, instead of doing birdseed or flower petals or bubbles like most people do when they're leaving the reception, I wanted to go for a snow kinda theme. What did we come up with, you ask? Not the fake, biodegradable snow that costs an arm and a leg for the amount we were needing. No. We're much more economical than that. We used instant mashed potatoes. And they looked perfect. Looked just like snow. When they're thrown UP into the air. Notice the condition there. They don't look so much like snow when you're being pelted in the face with them. I didn't see anyone in the line b/c I had my head down the entire time. We had potatoes in our hair, our mouths, our ears...everywhere. We were still finding potato flakes days later in our clothes. Somehow. No idea how they got there. When I took my wedding dress off, we gathered a huge pile of it out of the bathroom floor. It was ridiculous. lol

I'm sure I could come up with a lot more memories from that night, but that's what stands out right now. Plus, this post is getting super long. So I'm going to wrap it up for tonight. I've still got some stuff on my mind tho, so I think I'll continue this tomorrow or Thursday. Until then, have a nice night!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Micah's Blog

Apparently I took over the other blog and made it a bit to girly. So Micah ditched me. He said it had become more of my blog instead of our blog, which was ok, but he wanted to have his own. I told him it wasn't my fault that he never posted anything. =)

So I thought I'd share his blog address w/yall so that you could follow him as well as me. =)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Reviews coming soon!

I got my first book to review in the mail the other day. I'm super excited. And it's a hardback! I was impressed! I'm 2 chapters into it, and liking it so far. It's called Obstacles Welcome and it's about (and written by) Ralph de la Vega, who is the CEO of AT&T. He is a Cuban immigrant. He came to the States when he was 10 all by himself. His parents were trying to come, but their paperwork was wrong. So they sent him by himself, hoping to join him in a wee or so, after they got their paperwork sorted out. He stayed w/some friends of his aunt who had already moved to the States. Then the Cuban Missile Crisis hit, and a week turned into 4 years. It's very interesting thus far, and has some very practical advice for overcoming obstacles and becoming successful. So be looking for a review in the next couple of weeks.

I just went and looked at some other books that I can request after I review this one, and it makes me want to hurry up and finish it. lol. One that looks particularly interesting is called Rediscovering God in America. And I'm super jacked about getting free books. =)

Things are slowly but surely getting organized around the new apartment. Still got a good bit to do in the office, but it shouldn't take long. It's just a matter of doing it. The main thing that we need that will help SOOOOO much is getting a pantry cabinet. All of our food is just sitting out on the counter now b/c we don't really have a place for it. I've got a perfect spot for a pantry. Just gotta get one. I'm wanting to have everything basically done by Saturday night b/c we're having some friends over for dinner and fun. The boys are going to bond over Xbox and we're going to work on Christmas projects. =) I'm excited.

Well, I think I'm going to go get some reading done. =) Have a great evening!!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

This Everyday Love

"It's ordinary, plain and simple
Typical, this everyday love.
Same ol', same ol', keeping it new
Emotional, so familiar
Nothing 'bout it too peculiar
Oh, but I can't get enough
Of this everyday love."

This song is what comes to mind when I think about mine and Micah's relationship.
There's nothing extraordinary to it. It's the little things that make it what it is.

For those of you married people out there, have you ever caught yourself just getting caught in the day-to-day stuff that you forget how much you really love your spouse? I mean, you still love them. But it just becomes so normal and everyday that it isn't "special" anymore, ya know? It's just always there, so you take it for granted. Life can get so hectic and busy sometimes that you forget to just stop and be like, "Wow. I really love him and I'm so lucky to have him."

The week of Thanksgiving was super crazy busy. Hectic. Ridiculous. I can't stress that enough. On top of all of the normal crazy Thanksgiving festivities, Black Friday and such, we were moving. Genius, I know. So tempers were a little sensitive. We were both going on lack of sleep and extreme exhaustion. My OCDness vs. Micah's laidback-ness probably didn't help much in the move either. lol. (No, 'laidback-ness' isn't a real word...until now. lol)

And then, this week, after everything settled down and we've basically got the unpacking under control, although not completely done, I had one of those revelations. You know when you just can't be around someone enough? When you sit and watch a basketball that you really have no interest in until way after your bedtime just so you can sit next to him on the couch and cuddle?

And it's been little stuff that has made me realize this. No flowers. No romantic surprise getaways. No big presents.

It's him being completely goofy. When I realize that he would never act this dumb around anyone else but me. He's a complete dork, and I love it.
It's him doing anything he can to make me laugh. And it works.
It's him making me realize that it's stupid to be angry about something at work. (Even though that drives me crazy, I know he's right. lol)
It's him cheering for my team when until very recently he has had no interest in college football.
It's him giving me the cherry from his banana split. =)
It's him singing along with the Veronica Mars theme song b/c he's a dork like that.
It's all the inside jokes. Things that just me and him can laugh about.
It's him knowing when I need to cuddle before I ever say anything.
It's him making funny of me for all the goofy stuff I do.
It's us 'arguing' about which one of us steals the covers.
It's him sharing the dreams that he has for our life together.
It's walking in and catching him watching HGTV.
It's sitting and talking over Mexican about anything at all. Like politics, church goings-on, what kind of puppy we want, or an analysis of the latest episode of Veronica Mars. (Have you noticed a new addiction? lol)
It's just sitting and not having to say anything at all. Because just being in the same room w/him is enough for me.

I live for little moments like this. =)

Roll Tide Roll!

#2 Alabama defeats #1 defending SEC champs Florida 32-13. It wasn't even close. 22nd SEC Championship. Looking for National Championship #13.

What a wonderful day. =)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

My Prayer for You

So the other day, I was reading through 1st Thessalonians and I came upon this passage that I'm not sure I've ever seen before. Of if I have, I've never paid much attention. Or maybe this was just a translation that really hit me. It's Paul's prayer for the people of Thessalonica. And I just thought it was a very beautiful prayer. It's in 1st Thessalonians 3.11-13.

"Now may our God and Father Himself and our Lord Jesus clear the way for us to come to you. May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you. May He strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all His holy ones."

Mental Health Hotline

I saw this today and thought it was hilarious. If you've studied psychology, you will also find it exceptionally funny. If you haven't, it'll still probably be pretty funny. =)

Hello and welcome to the mental health hotline.
If you are obsessive-compulsive, press 1 repeatedly.
If you are codependent, please ask someone to press 2 for you.
If you have multiple personalities, press 3, 4, 5, and 6.
If you are paranoid, we know who you are and what you want. Stay on the line so we can trace your call.
If you are delusional, press 7 and your call will transfer to the mother ship.
If you are schizophrenic, listen carefully and a small voice will tell you which number to press.
If you are manic depressive, it doesn't matter which number you press, no one will answer.
If you have a nervous disorder, fidget with the hash key until someone comes on the line.
If you are dyslexic, press 696969696969.
If you have amnesia, press 8 and state your name, address, phone number, date of birth, social security number, and your mother's maiden name.
If you have post-traumatic stress disorder, slowly and carefully press 000.
If you have bipolar disorder, please leave a message after the beep, or before the beep, or after the beep. Please wait for the beep.
If you have short-term memory loss, press 9. If you have short-term memory loss, press 9. If you have short-term memory loss, press 9. If you have short-term memory loss, press 9.
If you have low self-esteem, please hang up. All our operators are too busy to talk to you.

Hope you enjoyed that. =)

Sunday, November 29, 2009

ABCs of Marriage

The move is going pretty well still, although we're not quite done. But we're doing better than we ever did at the last apartment as far as getting things unpacked and organized. I think it's b/c we don't have a hugemongous spare bedroom to just stack boxes and random junk in. We don't have the space to do that anymore, so we are being forced to unpack. We also don't have to room to leave picture frames and artwork laying around just b/c I can't decide where to put them. So I think we've already put more stuff up on the walls than we ever had up at the old place. lol. And it looks so good! Yay!

While I was unpacking a box in the office earlier, I found a bunch of random notebooks. I was flipping through them and found a bunch of interesting stuff. Like the notes from the college girls' class I taught at Juno one night. I was pretty impressed with myself, I must say. I'm not sure I could put together that good of a class anymore. lol. I'll have to post that one sometime later, b/c it's got some good thoughts in it. I also found the notes from the devo I gave in the girl's cabin at camp in Brazil 2 years ago. It was on Ecclesiastes. I got so much Bible reading done that week, mainly b/c there wasn't anyone to talk to besides Micah. So when he wasn't around and everyone else was talking and having fun in Portuguese, I sat all by my lonesome and read my Bible. And that's when Ecclesiastes became one of my favorite books of the Bible.

I also found the journal I kept from that first week at camp. I had forgotten how many mixed emotions I experienced that week. Like, I remember that it was tough, but reading it reminded me how much pain I was in that week. It was so overwhelming to me to be in a foreign country where I knew I would live one day, to be surrounded by people I didn't know who spoke a different language (which is stressful enough for me when they speak English), and to try so hard to communicate with people. I was mentally exhausted and on the verge of a massive breakdown by day 3 of camp. The breakdown came on day 4. lol.

I found something else in one of the notebooks that I don't remember writing, don't remember where on earth I got it from, but it's pretty awesome, so I thought I'd share it with you. It's the ABCs of Marriage.

Affirm him daily.
Be his biggest cheerleader.
Count the blessings I have in our marriage.
Don't criticize him.
Encourage his hobbies.
Fight for his reputation.
Give him my body, mind, and heart.
Help him with a project he wants to finish.
Inspire him to chase after his dreams.
Just gaze at him adoringly.
Kiss him all over his face and neck.
Love him in spite of his weaknesses.
Make sure he knows he's the only one you'll ever want.
New nighties never hurt!
Offer to rub his feet after a long day.
Pray for needs dearest to his heart.
Quit nagging!
Remember whey I fell in love with him.
Stay committed and faithful to him.
Take the initiative when it comes to sex.
Understand where he's coming from.
View him through God's eyes.
Write him a love letter.
eXamine my own heart daily.
Yearn for God and His Word.
Zealously protect my marriage.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Book reviews

So I saw one someone else's blog that she reviews books for Thomas Nelson Publishers. And when I looked into it a little more, I found out that anyone w/a blog can review books for free. They send you a book every month based on ones you request or genres you're interested in. You read the whole book, write a 200 word review, and post it to your blog and a consumer website like Barnes&Noble or WalMart. So I signed up. I'm always looking for new authors or interesting new books. And I figured this would be just as good a way as any to do that.

After I initially found out about being able to review books, it got me thinking. I think I'm going to make it a goal this next year to read at least 25 NEW books throughout the year. And I specify NEW b/c I like to re-read my favorites. I've read the Harry Potter series several times. Like, at least 5 times. More for the first few books. I'm about to re-read the Twilight series too. (We went and saw New Moon tonight, so it's got me wanting to read it again.) So yeah, 25 new books a year. And they can be any genre. Fiction, self-help, religious, non-fiction, whatever. Then if I do 25 w/no problem, I'll up the number. So now that I've decided to review for Thomas Nelson, that'll help w/my new book goal. I'm pretty excited. So be looking in the next month or so for my first book review. =)

The move is still going pretty well. Not quite done yet. We should get everything out of the old apartment tomorrow. Getting everything situated here is another story. lol. I spent about 3 hours on it last night after we got in from HSV and made a decent dent in it. I at least found our bed and part of the living room. lol. And Micah got our dryer working again! So we're also going to tackle this mountain of laundry tomorrow too.

Things have been super crazy busy this week, so Micah and I went on a date tonight to just get away for a little bit. We went to O'Charley's and then to see New Moon. I liked it better than the first one, although it still had some cheesy moments. New Moon was my favorite book out of the 4. =)

And now I'm beginning to crash after the extremely long week that we've had. Gotta get some sleep so I can work on moving tomorrow. I also have to get my class ready for Sunday morning, which might prove to be a little difficult. So I'm gonna sign out. Have a great evening and weekend!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The new place

So as I mentioned in yesterday's post, we're moving. We'll have the same landlord, which is good, b/c he's pretty awesome. And he's just transferring our lease for us. So that's good too. And it's just the next building over. So we didn't have to go very far. We're losing a good bit of space, but I'm ok w/that now b/c I'm realizing that the place we were in was just too big. We didn't have enough furniture to fill it up, so it looked pretty sparse. Not so in the new place! We're probably going to have to chunk a bunch of stuff, or put it in a yard sale.

We decided to move on Wednesday or Thursday of last week. Then as I mentioned, we were out of town last weekend, so we didn't get to do any moving then. I packed a few boxes and gathered a few things together before we left, but not much. So we got back Sunday night, slept in Monday to catch up on sleep, then went to Lowe's to pick out paint. The paint job was terrible in the living room. So I was adamant that I wanted it painted. Luckily, the landlord agreed to pay for the paint. But I got to pick out the color. =) So I started painting Monday a little after noon. Matt and Sarah (our Star Wars friends) came over around 4ish to help. The guys moved big furniture while Sarah helped me finish up painting. We got almost all of the big stuff, except for a big dresser, mattress, washer/dryer, couch, and a few small pieces. But we hadn't brought over a lot of small stuff yet. Maybe 10 boxes, some kinda small. I think it was mainly books. The only break we took was to watch the new episode of House while we ate supper.

So Tuesday I had to go back to work. Not fun. It was driving me crazy b/c I knew there was so much stuff that needed to be done at home. So I hardly slept at all the night before b/c my mind was all over the place. Got home and got to work again. Matt and Sarah came over again (they were lifesavers!) and the guys got the rest of the big stuff over, along with a probably 3 carloads of smaller stuff. We pretty much just brought it in and threw it down somewhere. We'll organize later. We're just trying to get stuff out of the old apartment as soon as possible.

Once again, I could barely sleep last night. And I had to go back to work this morning to my great dismay. When I got home, Micah was putting another load in the car. I cleared out the bedrooms upstairs so that we could vacuum. We were trying to hurry b/c the electricity was getting cut off tomorrow. But we ended up calling the electric company, and they're waiting til Monday to shut it off. So that'll give us some more time to finish up.

We're in HSV now, heading back tomorrow night. After work Friday, we'll work some more, and hopefully get the old apartment empty and clean. Then we'll spend all day Saturday trying to get the new place in order. That is gonna take a while, b/c we're gonna have to be stepping over stuff for a while. It's a disaster area. You shoulda seen us trying to pack this afternoon. lol. Stuff is everywhere. But I'm excited. Organizing and hanging pictures and moving furniture is my thing. I love idea who I got that from though...;-) lol.

Well, that's the update. And I'm gonna wrap this up b/c this post is getting way too long. =) Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Ok, so this isn't going to be a long post, but I just wanted to check in real quick. =) Things have been super super busy around here lately. And they aren't going to slow down quite yet. here's a quick run-down. I'll elaborate later.

-Went out of town this weekend. Left Friday night, got back Sunday night.
-I was off Monday, but it wasn't very restful. We decided to move into a slightly smaller apartment. It is owned by the same guy and is just in the next building over from where we were. So quite convenient. But before we moved in, the living room needed a coat of paint. The previous tenants had touched it up, but with a slightly different shade of paint. Genius. So needless to say it looked like junk. But the good news is that I got to pick what color to paint. =) So Monday was spent buying paint, painting, and moving a few things over.
-Back to work today. Came home, finished moving all of the big pieces over, and most of the little stuff.
-Took a break to eat pizza and watch our last Star Wars movie. So I'm fully cultured now.
-Back to work again tomorrow. Then home, shower, then off to HSV for Thanksgiving. Back here on Thursday night b/c I have to be at work Friday morning for the funnest day of the year! NOT!
-We had thought about going to Paragould for Thanksgiving for the weekend, but I'm not sure we'll survive another trip. lol.

And now it's bedtime. I'm super exhausted. I'll fill yall in on more details in the next few days. Happy Thanksgiving if I don't get back to ya by then!

Sunday, November 15, 2009


Freed is now offering the Rosetta Stone software FREE to all students. You can take your computer by, they'll download the software, and then they can just add languages to your account. Now, I'm not technically a student, but they're letting me have it anyways. I called Micah the other day when he was getting it put onto his computer and the guy doing it heard how excited I was about it over the phone, so he agreed to put it on mine too. I was a student a few months ago, so close enough right? lol. I've been wanting the Rosetta Stone software for a while now so that I can work on my Portuguese. Well, the bad news is that they don't have Portuguese yet. If enough people are interested then they'll get it. So far, they offer Spanish, Italian, French, German, Mandarin Chinese, Russian, Greek, and Hebrew. And they might be getting Portuguese and Japanese soon. Micah and I got the first four on that list. Until they get Portuguese I'll probably pick one to work on. I'm thinking either German or French. Spanish and Italian are going to be too close to Portuguese and it'll just confuse me.

So coming back around to the title of the blog: aspirations. One of my recent aspirations has become to learn languages. I would love to be able to speak like, 7 languages. I have no idea where the number 7 came from, but that's just what I pulled out one day. I want to be fluent in English and Portuguese (got one of those down! lol) and be able to at least somewhat communicate in 5 others. If I get Spanish, Italian, French, and German down, I've only got one more to go! I haven't decided what I want the last one to be. Maybe Japanese just to have something different. =) So yeah, I'm super excited about getting all of the software for free, because it will make accomplishing that dream a whole lot easier.

There are so many things I want to do in my lifetime. And I think all of them are definitely attainable:

-I want to learn to paint. I just want to do artistic stuff in general I feel like that is something I could be talented at, but I just haven't had the opportunity to express it. I just need practice. I would love to have an art room one day, just to do whatever I want. White walls, white floor. I can throw paint on the wall if I want to. It'll just be my place. I want to learn to make pottery.
-I want to learn to play the piano. I don't have to be great at it. I don't have to write my own music. I just want to be able to sit down with a piece of music and play it.
-I want to homeschool my children. There are so many things that I want to teach them that I don't think public schools can/will. I want them to learn music and art at a young age. I want them to be able to learn languages or whatever else they are interested in. I want to teach them about the Bible and instill in them the values that I wouldn't trust to anyone else.
-I want to travel. There is a teacher at school who leads a tour in the Middle East retracing the apostle Paul's steps. That would be so amazing. I want to go to the Louvre. I want to visit old castles in Scotland. I want to go see Auschwitz. (Morbid, I know, but that time period is so interesting to me.)
-I want to pick a subject from the Bible and become an expert on it. I know I'll never be an expert on the whole Bible or maybe even half of it. But I can pick one small aspect of it and learn everything I can about it. I don't know what that subject will be yet...I'm still thinking about that one.
-I would love to write a book one day. I don't know what it will be about. Maybe the subject I become an expert on. Maybe just about my experiences becoming a missionary's wife and moving to a foreign country.
-I want to take amazing pictures.

There are so many more, but this blog is getting long enough as it is. So yeah...I'm really excited about beginning to accomplish one of these aspirations. Hopefully I'll get to work one some more soon. =)

Everything begins somewhere...

I know I have been wanting to blog for a while now. Every time I blog, I say something to the effect of how "I feel the need to put my thoughts in written form..."

I seem to never get past that first post to put me on the path to writing. I tell myself that papers are where I am the weakest in school. That is the first problem right there, I tell myself I can't or I struggle with...

I was listening to John Maxwell on cd the other day. Someone was talking to him about how they wanted to start writing but that they did not know how he could do it. John told the person to just start writing. He explained that his first book took him a year to write and it was only a hundred pages long. Each chapter he wrote was only about 3 or 4 pages long and he explained that it was a stretch for him to write those short chapters. He says it himself his first book was horrible.

After writing his first book John found someone to mentor him in writing. His mentor worked hard with him for two years and look how good a writer he is today. Just start writing.

That made me think about other things I want to learn and accomplish. We make up reasons or excuses for why we can't do things and tell ourselves that to the point that they become true instead of looking for why or how we can.

Truth is everything begins somewhere. When will you stop making excuses and just start writing?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

"Marriage is like a pet boa constrictor..."

"...either you feed it every day or bad things happen."

I found this quote in a marriage article on MSN. Hilarious, but defintely some truth to it.

The article talked about 4 things to make your marriage spectacular. Here they are:
1. Understand each others' needs. Share your expectations with each other so that your spouse can try to meet those expectation.
2. Show him some love. Guys need affirmation. Pay him compliments.
3. Take 10. 10 minutes out of every day to just sit and talk. Not about chores or kids or bills. Anything where you can learn something will help you bond. Whether it's discussing what super power you'd want or recent political happenings.
4. Focus on the good. That doesn't mean you can't ever speak anything negative, but the good should outweigh the bad.

Now, I know that we have a lot to learn and there is always room for improvement, but I must say that I think we do pretty well at all of these things. It's just normal for us. But it's kinda sad because for so many couples, stuff like this is a big step. And it can do a lot to save their marriage. Like, this article didn't revolutionize our marriage by any means, but it could definitely do that for a lot of couples.

Even in the church today, so many people don't know how to interact with their spouse. It amazes me when I hear Christian women talking bad about their husband. Or Christian men talking down to their wives. In public! I mean, I know we haven't even been married quite 2 years, and that I'm still very young, but I know better than that.

Micah and I have talked about this a lot lately b/c we've been going through a class on marriage on Sunday mornings. And we've come to the conclusion that there is definitely always room for improvement, but that we have a better handle on our marriage than a lot of people who have been married for as long as I've been alive. And we've figured out why that is. We both have really good examples to follow.

My parents have been together since they were like, 14 years old. They got married young. In most cases, especially today, these marriages never last very long. My parents are still very happily married and flirt and goof around like they're still teenagers. I don't think I've ever seen my parents fight, which is something that is rare for anyone to be able to say. Unless you count the frequent wrestling matches. lol. *Funny story real quick:: I'm not joking about these wrestling matches. They happen quite often, and it's hilarious. Mom puts up a good fight and all, but she really has no chance. Sorry Mom, but you know it's true. lol. Well, there was one night years ago when they were wrestling around and Morgan, who was maybe 7 or 8, says "Why do yall fight so much? Yall are always fighting!" My reply was "Who are you and what family have you been living with all your life?" She didn't understand that they were just playing around. We still make fun of her for that. lol*

Micah's parents still have a very good relationship. They are another case in which, were it to happen today, it probably wouldn't last very long. I'm not sure the exact numbers, but I think they only dated for like 2 weeks before getting engaged. Ridiculous, right? lol. They got married like, 2 months after that. Crazy. Today, no one would expect that to last very long. But theirs has. Granted, I don't get to be around them that much, but I can tell just from the few weeks that I've been at their house or that they've been here that they have a great relationship.

So we're both very thankful for the examples that our parents have given us about how to treat each other and how to have a "spectacular" marriage. And I didn't need an article on MSN to tell me that. =)

Saturday, November 7, 2009


Tomorrow is going to be an emotional day. The congregation where I attended growing up has sold their old building and is in the process of building a new one. Tomorrow it the last service in the old building and as the Memorial Parkway congregation. After tomorrow, they will be Chase Park.

It's exciting at the same time though, because it's a new beginning. And there are going to be a lot of former members come back for the last service, so it'll be nice to see people I haven't seen in a long time. But it's definitely going to be emotional. And I know that the church is the people and not the building, but's still sad. There will be lots of tears. I have so many memories from that building::

-Playing w/Loni Beth under the blue stairs before they closed it off.
-Sardines in the dark with the youth group.
-Mine, Joshua's, and LB's 3rd, 2nd, and 1st birthday at the Thomas House.
-Flag football on the back lot w/Paul.
-Senior receptions.
-Wednesday night 5th grade Bible class with Will Johnson and the green pencils. =)
-Painting the youth room that terrible yellow and green checkerboard. lol.
-Dragging my fingers on the ceiling in the foyer when Dad would carry me. (You can still see the marks. lol)
-Going to visit Mammer and Glenda in the offices during the week.
-Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in the foyer w/Joshua, Jordan, and LB. Our secret lair was under the table at the far end of the foyer.
-The youth section.
-Lock-ins, watching movies on the big screen in the auditorium at 3 in the morning.
-Climbing the trees out front and next to the carport.
-Hanging out w/Tara, Maria, and Ashley in the pink bathroom upstairs.
-Hanging out in the "hot room" after services. lol.
-Climbing the poles in the foyer of the fellowship hall.
-Mother's Day Out.
-Playing on the playgrounds when I was a kid....and when I was a teenager. lol.
-Not to mention my wedding. Kind of a big deal. =)

So it's definitely going to be bittersweet. And I know that so many more memories will be made in this new building. But I'm still gonna cry tomorrow. lol.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

One more LOTR quote...

So as I kept watching the movie, I came across another quote, which is my number one favorite from the movie. I like it because a friend introduced me to it when I was going through a rough time, before I had even seen the movie. And it was just very encouraging to me at that point in my life. Maybe it will encourage you too.

Frodo: I wish the Ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened.
Gandalf: So do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.

That's all. I'm done for real now. Good night!

Sick days...

I was doing so good. The year before Micah and I got married, I was convinced that the state of Tennessee was out to get me. For some reason, the allergy crud here is so much worse than in Alabama, for me at least. That year, I think I had the sinus crud 6 times. Yeah. That's every 2 months. Ridiculous, right? TN hated me. Well, since we've been married, I think I've only had it once. (I told Micah maybe he did do something good for me. lol) Until now. I've fought it off all year. Everyone at work and church has been getting sick. I guess TN was trying to make it up to me by not getting me sick. =) Until now.

I woke up yesterday morning with a really sore throat. My glands were swollen all day long. A little bit of sniffling, but not too much. Then after I got home from work it got a little worse, but it was still bearable. Micah went to the store to get me some medicine to try and keep the worst of it away. Along with the medicine, he brought me back a huge pack of Twizzlers. Those have been my favorite candy for as long as I can remember. He's awesome. =) Took the medicine last night. Woke up this morning feeling terrible. Sinus headache. Couldn't breathe too well. Throat still sore. So I took some medicine and headed off to work. That didn't last long. I was home by about 8. Good thing too, b/c it only got worse as the afternoon went on. The medicine that morning started working pretty well, but when it started to wear off, it wore off fast. And I crashed pretty hard. I am now on my 3rd dose of medicine today. Overall, I'm feeling better, but still can't breathe at all through my nose. I'll hopefully be able to go to work tomorrow. I only have one more sick day left this year. We'll just have to see how I feel in the morning.

One thing that has been pretty nice is getting pampered and waited on by Micah. lol. I'm usually the one taking care of him. Micah is gone to Memphis tonight, so I'm home alone. It's kinda nice though b/c I think this is the first time I've been here alone for any length of time since he has gone back to school. I decided it was a good epic movie night, so I put in The Fellowship of the Ring. =) I had the urge to watch it a few days ago. We were watching a show called the 50 Greatest Child Stars, and both Elijah Wood (Frodo Baggins) and Sean Astin (Samwise Gamgee) were on the list. So tonight was a good night to watch it. =) Here are some of my favorite quotes from the movie:

"A wizard is never late, nor is he early. He arrives precisely when he means to."

"I ain't been droppin' no eaves, sir. Honest!"

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Out of sight, out of mind.

So when I was in school, I was really involved in Lads to Leaders. Especially Bible Bowl. For those of you don't know, L2L is a program for young kids in the church to learn how to become leaders in the church. They go to convention and compete (although some people don't like to call it a competition) in their various areas. There's song leading, speech, art, debate, puppet skits, and lots of others. Bible Bowl is taking whichever book is being studied that year, and studying it, being able to answer questions and such. Then at competition you and your team of 4 sit in a room and answer questions on the book for like, 4 hours, and whichever teams have the highest scores get awards. So I was always involved in Bible Bowl, and honestly, I was good at it. And it was awesome because for years afterwards, I could still remember the things I had studied. Over the years, I studied Genesis (for 2 years-they split it up), Matthew, John, Acts, James....I think that's it. I can't remember if there were any others off the top of my head. For James, I actually memorized the whole book. It's only like, 107 verses or something like that. And there's another event to participate in called Centurion of Scripture where you memorize 100 verses. So I kinda hit 2 birds with one stone on that one.

So the last couple of weeks I have gotten into the New Testament in my Reading-through-the-Bible plan. And I have realized how much I had forgotten from the Gospels. There are so many little stories that I used to know so well but just haven't thought about because I haven't read them in so long. It's kinda sad. Especially when it comes to passages like the Beatitudes. We hear individual verses or groups of verses referenced in sermons or classes, but rarely read through it all in one sitting. And there are so many little miracles or parables that just get a couple of verses so they just get skimmed over. So it has definitely been a good refresher. I've enjoyed it. I think I've mentioned what I want to do for my reading next year. I've heard that if you read 3 chapters from the NT every day, you'll read through it 4 times in a year. 3 chapters is so easy. So I'm excited about re-familiarizing myself with the NT and all of the stuff I used to know when I was younger.

Thursday, October 29, 2009


So I found this quote today and I really like it. It's pretty deep, so it took reading it a few times to wrap my mind around it. =)

"Dreams pass into the reality of action. From the actions stems the dream again; and this interdependence produces the highest form of living." -Anais Nin

Don't be afraid to dream big. =)

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Pointless traditions?

Hayrides. What's the point? Tonight was the hayride and cookout w/the church group. On the way out there, Micah was like, so what's the purpose of this hayride thing? I don't really know. Then he asked if I thought they would leave on it without us (b/c we were running about 20 mins late). My reply: "No, it's not dark yet." "Why does it have to be dark?" "I don't know. It just does." So what is the purpose of a hayride? Especially a non-haunted one? I mean, we just sit in a cotton trailer on a bunch of bales of hay. It's freezing, the hay is itchy, the fields we are riding through stink to high heaven...and this is supposed to be fun? lol. Now don't get me wrong. It was enjoyable. But really? What's the meaning behind this pointless fall tradition?? Here's a picture from the hayride. Lauren sat with us for a little while. Apparently I missed the funny face memo. =) It's still a good picture tho.

Another tradition that is not-so-pointless, but nonetheless kinda silly is the tradition of Candle-lightings. It's a Freed thing. And I'm reminded of it b/c I got an invitation to one yesterday! =) Here's what a candle-lighting is. When a girl gets engaged, she keeps it a secret, at least at first. She probably tells a couple of close friends so they can help plan. They send out invitations to all of her friends to come to the candle-lighting ceremony. It's usually at night, somewhere on campus. Everyone shows up and sits in a circle, speculating about who it might be. At the ceremony, the ring is tied to a candle. The host (not the engaged girl) lights the candle and starts it around the circle. On the first go-round, all of the girls ooh and aah at the pretty ring as it passes by. On the second time around, when it gets to the newly engaged girl, she blows out the candle, letting everyone know it's her. And then the squealing begins. lol. I had one after we got engaged. And I did so good keeping it a secret! Everyone thought it was me b/c they knew we were gonna be getting engaged soon, but I fooled them all for a day and a half! Go me! lol. They kept asking and I told them that I thought it was someone else and that they knew that I wouldn't be able to keep it a secret if it was me. (Devious
So yeah, I got invited to one for tomorrow night, but I already know who it is. B/c I'm just good like that. lol. It's the friends we've been doing our Star Wars movie nights with. We knew it was coming soon, so I wasn't surprised at all. She was walking around the cookout tonight w/her left hand stuck out. =)

By the way, the only good thing about living in Tennessee surrounded by a bunch of Vols fans is living in Tennessee with a bunch of Vols fans on the day that Alabama beats Tennessee. Roll Tide Roll! =D

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Unexpected guest

Ladies' class last night was a little more exciting than normal. And it had nothing to do with my teaching. lol. We had all just gotten into the classroom and were talking and catching up on each other's weeks. Something up on the ceiling caught my eye, and the girl next to me saw it too. We looked up and inside the fluorescent light was a little bitty mouse walking around. No idea how the little booger got in there, but he was. And he was probably getting a pretty good tan too. =) So needless to say, everyone was a little distracted for a few minutes. Then a few of us got some pretty good entertainment after church when a few men went back to try and get it out. They pulled the panel off, the mouse ran out the door, straight at the girl who was standing there watching. Of course she freaked out, especially when a man with a small garbage can came running at her after the mouse trying to catch it. lol. Unfortunately, his aim wasn't the best, so he crushed the poor little guy when he tried to put the garbage can over him. Granted, he did have to dive down the hallway after him... Micah later accused me of being a girl because I stood on a chair the whole time. Well, DUH! lol.

Speaking of ladies' class, next week's topic is jealousy.

Saturday I'm going to a ladies' day at the congregation where we used to attend. I'm not sure who the speaker is, but I'm excited about it. =)

Funny story before I go:: Most bloggers that I read tell a lot of stories about cute or funny things their kids say. Well...I don't have kids to tell funny stories about. But I DO have a husband who occasionally acts like a kid, so does that count? I hope so, b/c I have a funny saying from tonight. =) Now, this isn't the funniest thing he's ever said, but that's another blog for another day. (Ask me about mushroooms one day. hehehe)

Micah was loading the washing machine with a load of whites. He told me that he was going to put a few non-whites in there too, b/c he needed them, but didn't have time to do a dark load tonight too. I asked him what he was putting in there, and he replied that it was his basketball shorts, b/c they weren't made of cloth. =) I said, you mean cotton?? "Shut up!" was the response I got to that one. =)

Have a great night! And your quote to ponder for the night is :: Happy are those who dream dreams and are ready to pay the price to make them come true. :: =)

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Busy busy week

So I haven't posted in a week and I am very very sorry about that. Things have been a little crazy around here this week. We got back from the conference Sunday night around 7. Then Monday I had to go back to work. Boo. That night was spent kinda recovering and such. We also got ourselves organized to get to work on our new business goals that we made coming out of the weekend.

Tuesday was work/school, then to Memphis that night for the business meeting we go to every week. Very productive, encouraging, and all that good stuff. And thankfully, the format of the meetings have changed a little bit, so we get out about an hour earlier. =D Which makes me much happier about going b/c it means that I get in bed before midnight, when usually we aren't even home by midnight. So that's really exciting.

Wednesday night was church, and we had potluck before, so we had to head out an hour earlier. I love the congregation we attend, but it is a little bit...I don't want to say frustrating or inconvenient b/c that sounds terrible...but it's 30 minutes away. Which is fine. And I'm not complaining, I promise. Just stating a fact. It's just that we already have to leave by 6.30 to get to church on Wednesday nights, but on potluck nights, we have to leave by 5.30. So by the time I get home at 3.45, shower, and get ready, it's basically time to turn around and go again. But once again, I'm not complaining. I mean, who can complain when it's free food?! lol. And it was Mexican week. Yummm.....
And I'm still teaching class on Wednesdays. This week was my second week. The topic was hatred. We only got halfway through it, so we get to finish the chapter next week. (Any comments on hatred would be appreciated. =)

Thursday was Star Wars installment #5. But before that, I got my hair all chopped off. =) I really like it. It's a wedge kinda, but it's not stacked in back, and it's still long enough in front that I can at least pull the top half up. So I got off a little early at 2.45 or so, ran home and showered, haircut at 4.30, movie night at 5.30. I was definitely not cooking. So we ordered pizza. =) It's kinda confusing b/c it's movie night #5, but we watched episode 2. The reason for that is that we are watching them in the order they were made, not the order of the plot. I think this one was my favorite so far.

Friday, we went to the $2 theater on campus and watched Harry Potter and the HAlf-Blood Prince. I haven't liked any of the other HP movies, but this one was good. Granted, they left a lot of stuff out. I had to fill in some of the details for Micah b/c they left out why certain things were happening. But nonetheless, it was still good. I'm actually kinda excited about #7, b/c I found out recently that they are splitting up book 7 into 2 movies, which I think is brilliant. There is so much happening in book 7 that they would have to take out half of the story to put it in a 2 hr movie.

Saturday was great. I slept in, which I desperately needed after the long weekend and week we had. Last night we went on a date to Zaxbys and to see GI Joe. AMAZING movie. Loved it. Definitely recommend it. It was funny and had tons of really good action scenes. So yeah, go see it. =)

Today was church day. We went out to eat w/some friends for lunch. It was the family that has the 2 little kids that Micah and I play w/all the time. Nap time this afternoon. Then back to church for singing night. Sometimes the congregation struggles on singing night b/c our numbers are usually kinda low, but tonight it was actually really good. Very encouraging.

Looking forward to tomorrow, b/c a good friend is coming up from HSV to visit. He'll be staying w/us for the next 2 nights. So it'll be good to catch up w/him.

Well, I'm gonna head out. I've rambled enough. I'll try to get back into posting every couple of days so that I don't have to catch you up on a whole week at a time. B/c I'm sure you're bored by now. =)

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Crazy weekend

So we went to Kansas City, Missouri for a business conference this weekend. It was a lot of fun. Usually we carpool with some other people on our way to these things, but this time, we had to leave late because Micah had to stay for class. And then we had to finish packing. And then we had to get new tires put on the car. So we didn't leave until like, 3. Everyone else left around 9 or 10. We got lost 3 times, pulled over once (with only a warning b/c the cop was sympathetic to us lost Tennesseans), and finally made it around 11 or so. We missed the whole session Friday night, but that's ok. Saturday was awesome. But extremely COLD! Holy cow! When we left our hotel room that morning around 8.30, it was 36 degrees. And soooooo windy. And of course we had to walk a few blocks to get something from the car at the parking garage, and then another 6 blocks or so to find a Starbucks for breakfast, and then the 8 blocks back to the conference center. I thought my ears were gonna fall off. lol. We decided to head back early this morning instead of sticking around for the end. It was only gonna be about 2 hours long, and we wouldn't get out until at least 3, which would put us home at 11. Not fun. So we left around 9.30 this morning, hoping to make it back in time for church tonight. Didn't quite make it tho. We were gonna be about 20 minutes late, and most Sunday nights we only go for 40 minutes or so anyways. So now we're back home and really excited from the weekend.

I don't really have much else to talk about. I did hear a really good quote today in an Eagles song tho. I don't know if this is the exact quote, but it goes something like this: "Sometimes we live our lives in chains, not knowing we have the key." That's all for today. See ya tomorrow!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Reading list

So I'm trying to come up with some good books to read this next year. I need suggestions. I've been really proud of myself for keeping up with my daily Bible reading this year, so I want to keep it up in some form or fashion next year. (Ok, so it hasn't been 100% daily, but I've stuck with this Daily Chronological so far. I've never gotten past like, February with other reading plans like this. So I'm happy.) I read somewhere that if you read 3 chapters of the New Testament each day then you'll read it 4 times in a year. So I think I'm going to do that. Then along with that, I'm going to pick other books to read. I might even take on more than one book at a time. (Because I'm a nerd like that.) My breaks at work are always good times to read, but I think I'm gonna leave that time for whatever fiction/leisure book I'm reading. It gets loud in the break room sometimes so it's hard to concentrate. Some sort of commentary or other such book would be difficult to read and get anything out of. So what I think I'm going to do is leave my fiction book at work so I won't be tempted to read it at home.

I definitely want to read a missions book or two next year. Micah has plenty from his classes, so I might tackle one of those. I might also try a marriage book, like His Needs, Her Needs. I know I've started that one multiple times, but I don't remember if I've ever actually finished it. But I need some suggestions for good books to read. Anything spiritual, like a book commentary, or just a devotional type book. Or something non-spiritual but still something that I can get something out of. Like The Magic of Thinking Big, or something similar. So, suggestions anyone? What's a good book you've read recently?

I taught my first ladies' class tonight. It went pretty well. Our numbers were kinda down for whatever reason, so a lot of the talkative ones weren't there. I was a little worried at first. But one of the girls, Jennifer, had read the chapter and really contributed a lot. So that was good. Jennifer and her husband have recently placed membership. Micah used to play ball with him a few years ago, so we already knew them a little bit from Freed. We've gotten to know them a lot better since they've been coming out. They've got 2 little girls, which is crazy because they're about our age. (Well, in between me and Micah. I can't really say our age when we're 4 years apart, can I? lol) Next week's topic in class is hatred.

Tomorrow night is another Star Wars night. We're going back to number 1 now. They all insisted that we watch them in the order they came out, not the order of the plot.

Well, that's all I have for today. Have a good evening! Boa noite! (That's good night in Portuguese. But don't try to pronounce it because it sounds nothing like it looks. lol. The second word is pronounced something like noy-chee. Confusing, isn't it? lol.)

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Vacation is over...

Back to work bright and early in the morning. I'm not looking forward to it. But I do have to say that it's been a good vacation. I didn't think about Lowe's at all. Like to the point that I almost forgot that I had to go back when the week was over. lol. So it was good. I didn't get everything accomplished that I wanted to, but it was still a relaxing week. I got to spend a lot of time with Micah, so that was fun.

Another thing that was good (and maybe not so good) about the week was that it gave me a small glimpse of what it's going to be like to be a stay-at-home mom (minus the mom part of course. lol). And I can't wait. =) It's good motivation. Because I don't want to have kids before I have the opportunity to stay home. I am adamant about raising my kids on my own. I don't want a daycare raising them.

So that's what I got out of my vacation. I guess one of the good things about going back to work tomorrow is that my manager is on vacation this coming week. So it'll still be a half-vacation. Because he's kinda psycho sometimes. lol.

Quote of the day:
"It'll cost nothing to dream and everything not to."

Saturday, October 3, 2009

"Good is the enemy of great."

This was Nick Saban's inspirational message to the Alabama Crimson Tide today. Apparently it worked. We beat Kentucky 38-20. Great game. 4 interceptions. It was a really exciting game to watch. I just thought that was a really good quote and that I should share it with you.

Today was a pretty fun day. Micah and I slept in. It was my last day to really sleep in before I have to go back to work. Sad day. So I took advantage of it. Then for brunch Micah made me a sausage, egg, and cheese omelet. It was pretty awesome. And we watched the Bama game together...well, kinda. I watched, Micah played WoW, and then watched the replays of the really exciting stuff. lol.

After the game we went over to Joel and Tansy's for a little while. Randy wanted to show us his presentation that he has been showing to the elders of the congregations he is visiting.

I guess with him being here raising funds and stuff, it's got me thinking a lot more about going back. Micah and I have been talking about it a little more often. I'm getting really excited about learning Portuguese and starting to plan our ministry. We've got to go back (again) next summer. Don't get me wrong, I love Brazil. The trips are a lot of fun, and I know that I'm very lucky to have been twice, because most people will never get to go at all. It's just a little frustrating that we have to go so often. It feels like we just got back, and now we're starting to plan our next trip. We actually don't have to go back until December 2010, but we'd rather go during the summer, than wait til the last minute and something come up. ((For those of you who don't know, Micah is a permanent resident, but not a citizen. That means that in order to keep his residency and his permanent visa, he has to enter the country at least once every 2 years. And tickets are so expensive and it's so much time travelling, it's not worth spending any less that a couple of weeks. We try to stay 3 when we go.)) But it's going to work out pretty well, because Micah has to do a field lab as part of his degree program, so he'll just do that while we're down there. (If I get to go and stay the whole time.) So I'm getting excited about what I can get involved with while I'm down there. We might go to camp again, which I would love. We spent 2 weeks as counselors at camp on my first trip down there. It was stressful, but still a good experience. If he ends up working with his dad, then I'll probably work a whole lot on my language skills, and also get more acquainted with the culture. I'm hoping I'll be able to go and spend the whole 3 weeks. If I'm still at Lowe's, it shouldn't be a problem. I've earned enough vacation time, and they like me well enough that I can get it worked out like I did for the last trip. If I'm not at Lowe's, there's no guarantee it'll be quite that easy.

Tonight we had J&T over to our place for supper. We haven't really gotten to hang out with them much since they got married. I cooked Mexican chicken, which is a recipe that their mom makes a lot, so Micah and Joel were really excited about it. As soon as Joel walked in, he was like, "It smells like Mexican chicken in here." Then we played Apples to Apples. Very fun game. We laughed a lot.

I guess that's all I have for tonight. I've been trying to keep my posts shorter, but I'm not very good at that yet. Maybe I just need to start posting more than once a day, but keeping them really short. Idk. I'll get the hang of it eventually.

Remember: don't settle for good when you can do something great. Go do something great today. =)

Friday, October 2, 2009

10 Rules of Marriage

So one of our newest projects is to convert all of our notes from classes in college into Word documents on the computer. That way we can still keep them all, but they don't take up all the shelf space. (Or cardboard box space, b/c that's where all of the binders are right now. =) Then eventually we'll get an external hard drive to keep stuff like that on.

It's been interesting going through my old notes and rereading the class material. I've already finished one class: The Christian Woman. That was a great class. It covered how the Bible teaches that we should act as daughters, daughter-in-laws, mothers, mother-in-laws, wives, sisters, grandmothers, etc. So that was a good refresher. The teacher of the class is really involved with the magazine Christian Woman, so she talked about articles from there a lot. Both she and her sister, who I am especially close to, write articles for the magazine often. I've actually been thinking tonight about trying to bring out the writer in me again (that part of me has been buried since middle school or so) and send in some articles. I would also really like to get a subscription to the magazine. (hint, hint, Christmas, hint, hint! lol)

I started on the second section of notes today. The class is Marriage and the Family. Another very practical class. When I took the class, Micah and I had only been dating for a few months, so I've got a new perspective now as I'm going back through the notes. Here's one of the lists I found in the introductory material. I thought it was something good to share. It is 10 golden rules of marriage.

1. Never both be angry at the same time.
2. Never yell at each other unless the house is on fire.
3. If one of you has to win an argument, let it be your mate.
4. If you must criticize, do it lovingly.
5. Never bring up mistakes of the past.
6. Neglect the whole world rather than each other.
7. Never go to sleep with an argument unsettled.
8. At least once every day say a kind or complimentary word to your life partner.
9. When you have done something wrong, admit it and ask for forgiveness.
10. Remember it takes two to quarrel.

These all are simple at least in theory. Not so much in actual practice.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Vultures and Hummingbirds

So I'm teaching the Wednesday night ladies' class at church starting next week. I've never taught anyone older than 4-yr-olds, so it's a first for me. We have decided to study a book called "From Vultures to Hummingbirds: 6 Attitudes to Eliminate, 7 Attitudes to Cultivate." by Mary Alice Wilhelm. The six bad attitudes are anger, hatred, jealousy, selfishness, hypocrisy, worry. The seven good attitudes are compassion, forgiveness, the servant spirit, contentment, gratitude, the submissive spirit, love. The title is kinda odd, but with a little explanation, it makes perfect sense. Here is the explanation that the book intro gives.

"It is said that both the hummingbird and the vulture fly over our nation's deserts. All the vulture sees is decaying, rotting meat (carrion), because that is what they look for. They thrive on that diet. But hummingbirds ignore the putrid flesh of dead animals. Instead, they look for the colorful, aromatic blossoms of blooming desert plants. The vulture lives on what was! They live on the failed past. They fill themselves on what is dead and lifeless. Hummingbirds live on what is! They revel in fresh, pleasant things. They seek vibrant, living things. Each bird finds what it is looking for. So do we all. Obviously a choice we all have to make is whether we want to be vultures or hummingbirds."

The first topic is anger. The book gives several examples from the Bible of people showing anger properly or improperly: Jesus, John the Baptist, Paul, Moses, Mary and Martha, Paul and Barnabas, and Samson.
There are also several good quotes about anger. Quotes are kinda my thing. I used to collect and compile them in high school. I've got a Word document on my computer that has like, 40 pages of quotes divided into topics. So here are some of the quotes that were included, and some that I have added.
-Anger toward someone else is like taking poison ourselves and expecting someone else to die!
-Anger is never without a reason, but seldom with a good one.
-It is he who is in the wrong who first gets angry.
-Anger is that feeling that makes your mouth work faster than your mind.
-Speak when you're angry and you'll make the best speech you'll ever regret.
-If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape 100 days of sorrow.
-It is misdirected energy to be angry at things you can help, and wasted energy to be angry at things you cannot help.
-You don't have to take back what you don't say.
-The best time for you to hold your tongue is when you feel you must say something or bust.
-He who angers you, controls you.
-A relationship that has been years in the making can be destroyed by just a few thoughtless words.

The power of the tongue in James 3 is also covered a little bit.

So this is one of those posts where I am wanting some feedback! So comment! Any advice on teaching class in general? Any stories or input about anger?

Here are some of the discussion questions to prompt your thoughts a little. =)
-How important is it for people to settle disputes quickly, even not to "go to bed mad?"
-What circumstances in the world today perhaps call for a little more righteous indignation than we often show?
-How was "political correctness" influenced our inclination to be tolerant of intolerable things?
-What makes you angry quicker than anything else?

Thanks in advance for your input! =)

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Successful recipe #2

Pizza Spaghetti Casserole. This one was very good. And it was pretty quick and easy too...(assuming that you already have aluminum foil on hand and don't have to send your husband out to get some halfway thru preparation. And that while your husband is gone you can actually open the jar of pasta sauce so that you can have it all ready to go into the oven as soon as he gets back. =) Here's the link:

Watched Return of the Jedi tonight w/Matt and Sarah. We've decided that after we finish Star Wars, we need to keep up our movie nights. The guys are threatening that Star Trek is next. I think that one might take a year or so to get thru at this pace. lol. The new movie that just came out was really good. I liked it a lot. But I'm sure a lot of you Heroes fans will understand when I say that I couldn't get over Zachary Quinto being Spock. All I saw was a sociopathic serial killer named Sylar. lol.

Well, I'm gonna go now. Micah is getting impatient to have his computer back so he can play some WoW before going to bed.

Monday, September 28, 2009

I must admit...

...I make a mean chicken chimichanga. My first new recipe was a success. I was full after 2...Micah liked them so much he ate 4. lol. The recipe was really simple. I got it online from Southern Living. Here's the link if you wanna check it out. Micah recommends it. =)

My first day of vacation was pretty uneventful. Slept til 9 or so. Got up and went to the grocery store. Micah and I watched a few more episodes of Heroes online. We're trying to catch up on season 3 so that we can watch season 4 on tv. After that, I cooked supper, and now Micah and I are watching tv.

Tomorrow is going to be a fun day. Casey is coming over around 11 and we're going to watch Evita. It's a musical based on a true story about Eva Peron, who was a very loved political figure in Argentina in the 40's and early 50's. She started off as the illegitimate child of some big shot (I don't remember exactly who he was...politician or something) and worked her way (albeit with questionable methods) to the top and married Colonel Juan Peron who eventually became president of Argentina. This is one of those movies that almost everyone has heard of, they just don't know they've heard of it. =) This is the movie with the song "Don't cry for me, Argentina!" Great song. I first saw the movie in drama class in high school, and I'm really excited about watching it again. It took forever to find though! I looked at 4 rental places in Henderson: Movie Gallery, Movie World, Freed's AV Library, and the Chester Co. Public Library. I was even going to try to buy it if I could find it, but alas, no one in the area keeps it in stock. Luckily, a friend had it and let us borrow it. (Janet is my hero!) So our movie date is back on.

Tomorrow night, we're having another movie night. It's installment #3 of our Star-Wars-culture-Val-nights. And I'm trying another new recipe. But I can't tell you what it is because it's a surprise! Teeheehee. =) I'll post the recipe tomorrow night, assuming it's a success. One part of the meal that I can tell you about is the honeybun cake I'm making for dessert. Be jealous. Be very jealous. =)

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Roll Tide!

So I got told by a 4-year-old today at church that we couldn't be friends anymore because I'm not a Tennessee fan. lol. His dad has already brainwashed him. Poor kid. His dad, Shane said that Levi (that's the kid's name) got in the car and was like: "Dad! Me and Mrs. Valerie can't be buddies anymore! She's not a Tennessee fan!" I think he had probably sat with us in church that day and he was coloring with an orange marker and he told me that orange was TN colors. So I told him that red was better because that was Alabama colors. He was like: "But why do you like Alabama and not Tennessee?" So I told him that I used to live in Alabama and he was like, "oh ok." I can't get him to say Roll Tide though.

Levi and his little sister Lauren are our little buddies at church. Levi is 4 and Lauren is almost 3. A month or so ago, their parents, Shane and Kara, invited us over for supper, and ever since then, we've been a little attached to the kids, and they've been pretty attached to us. Lauren has a little crush on "Mithter Micah" and likes to come sit with us. It's adorable. I have a Drawing Pad on my phone with the touch screen, and they love to draw on it. It's hilarious though because I always give them a mechanical pencil w/out the lead in it to draw on it, just for them to have something pointy to use. But they both think that the color actually comes out of the pencil, even though they know how to change the colors and stuff in the settings on the phone. Lauren will be drawing and will stop and look at the end of the pencil after she changes colors like she's checking to see where it comes from. One time Levi wanted to draw on real paper, so I just got the same pencil and clicked the lead out so that he could draw. He was like, "This draws on real paper too?!" He was so impressed. lol. Then he wanted me to make the pencil draw blue. I was like, " only does one color on real paper..." lol.

I'm super excited about not having to go to work tomorrow. It's gonna be amazing. So far the plan is to get up around 8 (which is sleeping in pretty good for me. that's at least 2 extra hours), work out, put together a grocery list, go to town to the grocery store....not sure what I'm going to do all afternoon. But tomorrow night I think Joel and Tansy are coming over. The new season of Heroes premiered last week, so we're going to catch up and then watch the next episode tomorrow night. I'm kinda bummed though because House also shows Monday nights at the same time Heroes does. So if this becomes a weekly thing w/J&T, I'll have to go back and watch House online later.

Well, I guess that's all. I'll probably be heading to bed soon. Even though I don't have to get up early tomorrow, I'll still probably be crashing soon. I can't stay up late anymore like I used to in college. I guess that's just a sign that I'm getting old. =) TTFN! (I've already had to explain to my uncultured husband what TTFN stands for. For the rest of you uncultured people out there, it's from Winnie the Pooh. Tigger says it all the time. It stands for Ta-Ta For Now.)

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Been a productive day.

Today was a very productive Saturday. I even got to sleep in. =) Micah and I went to the library at school to work on some of his homework. We got a lot of stuff accomplished, which was awesome.
Then we went to Jackson and ate a late lunch/early supper at Zaxby's. We decided to go shopping a little and hit up some clearance sales to try and get Micah some clothes. He's been needing some jeans and shorts really bad. Most of his have torn or something. We did surprisingly well! I was so excited! Micah is extremely hard to fit. He needs a 34 length jeans, and he can wear anything from a 30-32 in the waist. If you've been shopping for men's jeans lately, you know that they just don't make that size! (I was about to say none of you have any idea how difficult that is, but I'm pretty sure some of you do. Between my dad, my granddad, and my brother-in-law, he's not the only tall lanky one in the family. My poor kids don't stand a chance. lol) Well, we hit the jackpot at Old Navy. We found a pair of jeans (on clearance!) that were 31-34s. It's a miracle. He can actually wear them without a belt! All of the jeans he has now, we had to get them bigger in the waist to get them long enough to fit his long ole legs. So, if he doesn't have a belt on, his pants will quite literally fall off. We also found a pair of shorts at Old Navy on clearance, and a pair at Target for $4.98! Jackpot!
Now we're back home, watching Heroes. This show is crazy! You think you've got it figured out, and then they throw you for another loop! So I should probably be paying attention b/c if I miss something, I'll be lost for the rest of the series. TTFN!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Free at last, free at last!

Today starts my 9 days of vacation! I'm really excited. I need a vacation so bad. It was funny b/c it was really easy to get out of bed this morning, and I was productive and in a good mood all day today at work. It was like I was already getting re-energized just anticipating my vacation. =)

So what am I going to do with all my extra free time??
-Tonight we've got a movie night planned with a couple from church. They're on a mission to culture me. (I usually talk about Micah being the uncultured one, but this time it's me.) I've never seen any of the Star Wars movies, so we're on Star Wars movie night #2. I blame it on my parents. They never watched/liked Star Wars. I had to marry a geek before I became even remotely interested. lol. (And I'm not being mean...Micah will admit that he is a geek. And I'm a nerd. We've come to terms with it. lol)
-Tomorrow, I'm going to the library with Micah to help him on some projects for school. Although I might have to ditch him for a little while to go watch the Bama/Arkansas game. (Roll Tide!) =)
-Other than that, I'm going to sleep in, read a lot, probably watch some TV series that I need to catch up on (we're almost done with season 3 of Heroes. and I'm borrowing the last 3 seasons of Friends from someone at church so we can finish those finally), organize the house a little, work on my lessons for ladies' Bible class at church, try out some new recipes, and whatever else I want to do.

I'll probably be posting something next week about the class I'm about to start teaching at church to get some feedback on. The book we're covering is about good and bad attitudes that we should/shouldn't have.

Now it's time to go get in the shower and then clean up the house a little bit before movie night. TTFN =)

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Story time!

This post is a tribute to someone very special to me. This is the story of how it all happened.

It was my freshman year of college and I had joined the University Chorale. I didn't really know anyone in the group except for the cute guy that was in my Interface group. (That didn't have any influence on me joining, I promise....=) I didn't know either of the girls who stood on either side of me in the (awesome) alto section. A few of my friends from my Interface group were planning on coming home with me to Big Spring Jam in Huntsville. (For those of you who don't know, it's a huge concert w/tons of different bands there and it's lots of fun.) One of those friends happened to be another cute Minnesota guy from my Interface group. (He will come back into the story later.) I happened to mention it for whatever reason to the girl standing next to me in rehearsal. I kept thinking that her name was Nicole for whatever reason, but I knew that wasn't right. I just couldn't remember what it actually was. Well, when I told her about my plans for that weekend, she said something to the effect of:: "That sounds like fun. I want to come too!" So I said sure! The more the merrier, right? Turns out her name was Lauren.

That weekend was definitely one of the most memorable of my college career. That Friday night I got pulled over for the first time. We laughed so hard about the whole incident. We goofed off and all piled up on (and nearly broke) my bed. Lauren and I shared a bed, and the whole weekend we "argued" about whether I liked Ryan (the cute Minnesotan) or not, and whether I should date him. Because Lauren had kinda started thinking that she might like him, but didn't want to intrude if I had already claimed him.

After another month of denial, Ryan and I finally dated. It was one of those situations where we were best friends, so it could have either ended really really good, or really really bad. It turned out to be the latter. And the whole time, Lauren, my new-found friend, was there for me. She is one of the few people here who has seen me really cry. She's one of the few people who understood that I didn't want to talk, I just wanted her to sit there. The rest of that semester was one of the most trying times of my life. I wasn't sure what I wanted. The only person at school that was constant in my life was my Lauren.

The next semester, things got a little interesting. Ryan and I finally got to where we could be around each other again, and the main reason for that is because of Lauren. We were both close with her, so therefore we had to deal with each other. I dated another guy for a little while, but it was never meant to last. Upon the ending of that relationship, Lauren invited me to church with her. She had told me about a guy that went to church with her who was pretty cute, but she wasn't sure if she liked him or not. When we got there, this certain guy wanted an introduction to "Lauren's cute friend," so he threw a paper wad to get her attention. Well, he missed Lauren and hit the "cute friend," AKA:: me. And that was how I met Micah. But that's another story for another day. =)

Shortly after that fateful night, Lauren and I were walking across campus. She looked over and said in her mischeivous little tone that she has: "Val, can I ask you something?" Before she could even ask the question, I answered: "Yes, you can date him." She and Ryan had grown pretty close over the past few months.

So to make a long story short, I married Micah and she married Ryan. And the weird thing's never been weird at all. A friendship like ours is the only one that could survive something like that. I mean really. Who else lets their best friend date and marry their ex, and still remains best friends? It doesn't happen much. And that's how I know that our friendship is unique. I'm not sure if I'll ever find something like it ever again. She's awesome. And I have no idea what I'd do without her.

I am telling you this story now because 4 years ago today, Lauren, Ryan, and I (along with a couple of others) all loaded up in my car and drove down to Huntsville for that Big Spring Jam weekend.

This next part is for La. It's a bunch of memories and inside jokes from the last 4 years::

Chi Beta Banquet from Hades, getting our ears pierced together, Tishomingo, poor Willard, Otis Spunkmeyer muffins, Gweedo and Fillmore, our signature funny face, dying our hair, purple hair, chorale dance team, Ralph and Charlie, the love octagon, cream cheese danish, pen fights, history class comic strips, chorale spring tour, Chow Wagon, cattle battle, midget slides, anybody wanna peanut?, invisible grenades, and I can't think of any more at the moment. I hope you know you're one of the best things to ever happen to me and my life would be incomplete without you in it. Love you, girl.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Thought for the day

"The greatest thing in this world is not so much where we are, but in what direction we are moving."

I saw this on a random sheet of quotes on our memo board at home and it just reminded me of the blog I posted yesterday. I guess that's something that has just been on my mind a lot lately, so I see it in everything.

What direction are you moving in today? My direction probably wasn't the most positive one, at least for the first half of the day. I think I'm really really needing a vacation from work, and because of it, my attitude is definitely suffering. (Good thing I'm on vacation next week then, huh?) Hopefully the break will be enough to help me keep a more positive attitude at work.
After I got home from work tho, my day was more constructive. I worked out (P90X kicks my butt!), took a shower, started watching the season premiere of House online, ate at Los Portales w/Micah, came home, finished the season premiere (I'm so excited about this season!), and now I'm writing to you while Micah studies for his 2 test tomorrow. So maybe I didn't take any concrete steps toward Brazil like I was talking about yesterday. Not yet at least. Maybe now that I've admitted to being a slacker it'll motivate me to actually get up and do something about it. =) Talvez, eu preciso practicar meu portuguese. (That says "Maybe I need to practice my Portuguese.) And there's probably something wrong w/that sentence structure or something, which means I REALLY need to practice. lol.

That's all I have for today. I'm really liking this blogging thing so far. It's nice to just get my thoughts down on paper (ok, not real paper, but you get the idea) so I can organize them a little. In my head they're just all kinda jumbled up. **Nostalgic story real quick, then I'm done for real:: Saying my thoughts were all jumbled up reminded me. Micah used to ask me what I was thinking a lot when we were dating. Most times, I couldn't really pinpoint anything in particular b/c my thoughts jump all over the place, so I would explain to him that my thoughts were like bubbles. They hung around for just a little bit, then another would run into it and pop it...then that one would float away...and so on and so forth. So eventually instead of asking me what I was thinking, he would just tell me to pick a bubble.** Ok, nostalgic story over. Good night!

Monday, September 21, 2009


Hello all! Val here! So we have decided to start all over with our blogging. We weren't too successful at it when we first started it, so we're going to try again. Most of our family lives a few hours away, and it's hard to keep everyone updated on what is going on in our lives day to day. So! If you want to keep track of what we're up to, subscribe to our blog!

Another reason we wanted to start a blog now is that we want to get into the habit now, before we're REALLY far away from everyone. The plan is to move back down to Brazil here in the next few years, and we want to keep everyone updated while we're down there too. This will be our tool for letting everyone know what is going on when we can't talk on the phone everyday. We can post pictures and tell stories that you might not hear in a 30-minute phone conversation.

Here are some things you might find in our blog:
~School. (Micah is finishing up his Bachelor's degree in Missions right now.)
~Movie reviews. Both of us LOVE to watch movies.
~Funny happenings.
~Family events.
~Random thoughts.
~Devotional thoughts.
~Sounding board for us to bounce ideas off of.
~And anything else we might come up with!!

So here's the thought for the day:
Tonight we went to campus and watched the new Disney/Pixar movie UP. Extremely cute movie. Hilarious. I laughed soooo hard. It was also a little different from other Pixar movies. There were a lot of sad parts in the movie. Pixar isn't exactly known for putting out tearjerkers, but this one definitely was. And very thought-provoking as well. Hence the blog posting. =)

Here's a quick summary of the movie (no spoilers! don't worry!). There is a young boy and girl who love the idea of exploring. They nearly idolize a famous explorer, and dream of one day going to Paradise Falls, a place in South America that this explorer discovered. They grow up and get married. Life happens. Their savings fund for Paradise Falls soon has to go towards new tires, medical bills, etc. Before they realize it, they are both old and have still not realized their dreams of moving to Paradise Falls. The husband goes and buys plane tickets, but just before he surprises his wife with them, she gets sick and dies. (Told you it was sad!) And that's just the beginning of the movie. So don't worry, I didn't ruin anything. That was mainly just backstory.

As funny as the movie was, it made me think about a lot of things. It is so easy to let life get in the way of our dreams. We plan on something, and then life happens, and our plans get pushed back. And then something else comes along, and they get pushed back more. And sooner or later, we've completely forgotten that we had plans to do it in the first place. For us personally, this means that our plans to go to Brazil need to be in front of us everyday. Every single day, we need to be taking action to make that happen. If it becomes a passive thing in the back of our minds, it gets forgotten, and it never happens. Or it happens years later than we had originally planned. So what are the steps we're taking right now? Well, for one, Micah has gone back to school to finish his Bachelor's degree in Missions. I am (sporadically) working on my Portuguese. I'm hoping to get the Rosetta Stone software soon to help speed that process up. And both of us are starting to get involved at church. We are both still trying to find our niche. I am about to start teaching the Ladies' Class on Wednesday nights. I am also leading a teenage girl's Bible study with another girl about my age. And we both plan on getting involved with the Lads to Leaders program that the congregation is trying to start. Micah participates in worship in many roles, and is hoping to start working on his speaking skills more as well.

Who knew that a Disney movie could provoke so much deep thought? I guess I've rambled long enough. If you've stuck with me this long, I appreciate it. Remember to subscribe to our blog!

Love you all,