Thursday, August 16, 2012

Loved, A Novel

I have been one of the few very lucky people in this world to read Loved in it's very early stages and I couldn't be more excited for it's publication.  This book, written over many years by my close friend Kimberly Novosel, was so incredibly truthful.  I found I couldn't keep my greedy little hands off of it.  It was truly one of those "I can't put it down and want to read all the time and when I'm not reading it I'm thinking about it" phenomena that I relish.  I found that I related so much to the main character.  I too grew up in a small town, I too had big dreams, I too let myself fall in and out of love with men who not only didn't get me, but certainly didn't deserve me, or treat me by any means the way a good woman should be treated.  Men that consistently confused me, let me down, and I kept going back for more.  I've also had those beautiful men in my past that left a permanent stamp on my heart.  That will be forever missed, created an everlasting void, and will never replicated identically in another.  Dearest Loved, please give me another page to read, please tell me how the story ends, but yet please don't let it be over.  After all, it felt like my story, and I was hungry to know how I would turn out.

Admittedly, I found myself envious of her in many ways.  She was more adventurous than I, and it seemed more brave too.  I wanted to be like her and regretted ways in which I hadn't been like her in some of the choices I had made.  I was also was grateful for some of our differences.  The results of many of her choices didn't always turn out as she originally hoped for with sweet naivety, and instead, proved to be very disappointing.  It was in these instances I felt I had dodged a bullet that she wasn't as fortunate to avoid.  This book has appeal for women of all ages because those women, at one point in time, either were this character or will someday be this character.

Loved is a must read.  Any young girl out there can learn from the main character's struggles, take them to heart, and hopefully be better for it.  By feeling an easy compassion for the lovable main character, I hope women of all ages can learn to love themselves by seeing themselves in her.  You can't help but root for her success, her ambition, and her journey.  You want her to win because you want to win yourself. 

Friday, September 16, 2011

I'm in the mood to run.

I'm in the mood to run but perhaps not the kind of running you think.  Not the legs pumping, heart pounding, sweat pouring physical endeavor.  I am in the mood to pack a light bag, get in my car on this cool morning, turn up some musical poetry to an all consuming volume, and drive drive drive, windows down, cool fall air in my hair, and take a long break from my life.

Lately, I have been very blessed.  But these blessings come with responsibilities, probably more responsibilities than I have ever encountered before in my life.  For the most part, I am enjoying this adventure, planning an event to remember for the rest of our lives.  But with every aspect to consider enters about twenty more tasks or steps and about one to three new contacts to coordinate with.  I feel the need to drive till I see an ocean and throw my cell phone in it, and then climb into said ocean myself just to float.  To let a creation God made hold me up to feel as if I was literally in His hands, which, I guess, I am.

I'm tired though.  I'm not exactly overwhelmed as I have a handle on things, but I am yearning a bit for those days when there are no plans except to breathe.  I miss my fiance and just the ability to simply BE together without the outside world constantly giving us it's two cents.  I wouldn't mind throwing him in that car too along with my lightly packed bag and lyrical poetry of Joni and Patty.  I just want to sing, rest, shed the responsibilities, until I am good and ready to return and get back to work.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

God will always provide.

Last week was the hardest week of my life.  Ben took me to the hospital very early Tuesday morning and I was diagnosed with a kidney stone.  I will spare you the gory details but I will just tell you that, after literally writhing in pain for hours, and then having to go through more pain spells over the following few days, I am more grateful than ever to be rid of the stone, be back to work, and for the most supportive and loving man by my side.

All that being said, I missed 3 full days of work.  My vacation time doesn't renew to September.  Leave it to me to have an emergency in the last month of my vacation days when the three I have left have been so carefully banked for a lovely trip to Chicago with Ben to see friends, family, and my 10 year HS reunion.  That's just the way it goes though.  Add in the new medical expenses and, needless to say, I was really worried about money in general and for our trip.

I went to church on Sunday morning and I prayed to God in worship.  I didn't ask for anything in particular, just took the time to spend with Him.  I remember struggling over giving my tithe.  I prayed about how much I could afford in my giving and decided to give as much as I could even if it was hard.  God had brought me out of a really hard place.  I remember thinking, "This is one way I give back to God for His blessings, and the blessings to come, however they will present themselves."  I try not to be a reluctant giver.  Please don't think I am trying to get credit for my actions here, it's just that this personal detail is applicable to the rest of my story.

Yesterday, I came back to work and my boss, in his true generous and wonderful fashion offered to let me work extra hours to make up for my lost time.  I was so happy to hear this and it really relieved so much stress.  I thought I was going to have to go back to the restaurant and pick up shifts to make up the difference (something I am trying hard to not have to do) but now I have a way.

Then the most miraculous thing happened.  I got a card from a client that we worked with to get her home rented.  We only work in sales and usually help our sellers find rentals only as a favor to them since we don't get paid in the process as there is no real commission standard for rentals in TN.  It's hard work to find a renter and often involves more work than even finding a buyer does.  I had done a lot for this seller in finding her a renter but I never expected a personal thank you from her, this just hasn't happened before in this job.

So I get this card, thanking me for my work, and there is a check inside with my name on it!  Just when I was down and out, just when I thought I wasn't going to be able to do the things I planned in Chicago with Ben, just when I thought the lost work and medical expenses were going to swallow me alive, there was God, working through this lovely woman to bless me and to bring me home.  I truly believe this was God's work in my life, the timing was so uncanny.  Always give praise!

Thursday, June 30, 2011

I'm trying to be more mindful of this...

God Has a Plan for Your Life 
by Rick Warren   

“[A]nd let us run with endurance the race that God has set before us.” Hebrews 12:1c (NLT)

I’ve said many times that God has a plan for your life. But what I want to emphasize is that his plan, which Paul describes as a race in today’s verse, is custom-designed for you and you alone.

You are supposed to run the race God has set for you. Not the race you set for yourself, not the race other people set for you, and not the race culture sets for you. You only run the race God has set for you. If you try to run any other course, you are going to fail and get discouraged.

The reason why so many people are discouraged today is that they are trying to please other people. Living for the approval of others is a weight that holds you back. You need to stop!

How do you know what is the race God wants you to run? Look at your SHAPE. Your SHAPE is your Spiritual gifts, Heart, Abilities, Personality and Experiences. What are you gifted to do? What do you love? What are your abilities? What is your personality? What are your experiences?

God doesn’t want rabbits to fly and eagles to swim. They are shaped to do what they are supposed to do, and you are shaped to do what God wants you to do. So stop trying to run other people’s races and go run God’s race for you!

Take a look at this new curriculum from Saddleback Resources: Raising Your Kids without Raising Your Blood Pressure.

This devotional is copyrighted 2011 by Rick Warren. Used by permission.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


To me you are Chanel No 5, Sandlewood, lazy summer days, peaches dripping down my chin, Farmers Markets, VW vans with bad seatbelts,  smokes, Coca-Cola Classic cans, rope swings, skinny dipping in the lake, magic mud, fireflies, colors, painting, teaching me art is just me and that is beautiful enough, in fact it's the most beautiful thing.  That's what you are to me.  The most beautiful thing, you made my childhood magical.  I miss you already and I can hardly stand it.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

A Day in the Life

Taken from one of my favorite blogs:  Very Culinary

Weather outside: According to my Iphone 75 degrees and sunny.  (It's rainy in my head though...been a little bit of a sadness day for me, woke up weepy and too reflective.  ADDITIONALLY  a cicada was in my car and some church lady thought I was crazy when I pulled my car over frantically begging her to get it out.  I might note I did not have a clue who this said church lady was.  BLESS HER.)

On my desk: Papers, files, things I have failed to keep organized, I'm working on all this today.

On my lap: I wish I could say a puppy but truly there is nothing on my lap unless you count my pants.

On my feet: Old flats that I want to replace but can't afford to.  *Sigh*

On my nightstand: Eat, Pray, Love.   So far I love it.

On my mind: How I can get more involved, more active, strengthen my friendships, etc.

In my Amazon shopping cart:  I'm more a library girl...

In the Netflix queue: Legend's of the Fall, Out of Africa, and The Sandlot

In the oven: So far this week it was more crock pot Pot Roast and Rotisserie Chicken in my Ronco...

In my ears: My book on tape House Rules by Jodi Picoult

In my tummy: Leftovers :-)

In my future:  Tonight Zumba with my favorite...Lorenza!  

On tap for dinner: Probably a quick pasta night since it's just me BUT tomorrow I am making either curry chicken or bison flank steak!

Latest obsession: Looking forward to my debt being paid off and these Pottery Classes!!

Happy Thursday, everyone! What’s on your nightstand? In your Netflix queue? In the oven?

Thursday, May 12, 2011

A new Wee bit Wednesdays...and a day late at that!

{one} what profession have you always admired?
Social Work.  Sometimes I think I want to BE a social worker because they are so amazing and courageous...then I realize I'm NOT that courageous.  My grandmother, my sister, my mother, my aunt, ALL social workers changing the world one client at a time.

{two} what would the title of your memoir/biography be if it was written today?
"The Unexamined Life is not Worth Living..."  Is it bad if my title is a quote from someone else?  I am a the ultimate collaborator.

{three} how far do you commute to work?
5 minutes!  Lucky girl!

{four} are your earlobes attached or detached?

{five} do you eat the unpopped kernels of popcorn at the bottom of the bag?
Only if they’re half unpopped…yup.

{six} what is the strangest gift you’ve ever received?
Not sure I have anything strange.  I have gotten many wonderful gifts.  Maybe one of the most creative was my Daddy at Christmas.  He gave me a box inside a box inside a box inside a...well you get the idea and in the final box was 100 $1 bills.  Awesome when you are 12...or even now!

{seven} what is one tv show that you wish hadn’t been cancelled?
Maybe Heroes... I am watching it now and I am in like season 3 but it did seem to last a while.  I also loved that one with Helen Hunt and Paul Reiser...Mad About You!

{eight} what is something that you are saving money for right now?
Trip to Chicago at the end of August with my honey!

{nine} what hobby would you like to take up?
Pottery Throwing.  I grew up with a potter in the family and I used to do it as a kid.  I want to do it now as an adult!

{ten} how many times a year do you get really dressed up?
As often as possible.  Hopefully at least once a month.  I go to a lot of benefits :-)