Thursday, December 31, 2009

Out with the old... with the new! I can't believe we are winding down 2009. Soon, I will complete my second year of marriage to my wonderful husband. '09 has been a journey for us. I spent the better part of it without a "normal" job and certainly without normal income! We explored so many options and knocked on countless doors seeking out what God would have for us. Here's what I learned:

God is always faithful - He can't be anything else.
It's okay to not have it all figured out.
God is always at work - for my good and His glory.

Gosh, I'm sure there are tons more...perhaps even yet to be realized.

I'm ending the year with two jobs. My full-time job is exactly the job I left over a year ago - doing emergency psychiatric evaluations. The schedule is slightly different, but it's the perspective change that is making this job a good thing for us. My second job is really a blessing. I'm working at my church as a counselor part-time. It is challenging and hard and wonderful and a total gift from God. My supervisor is great. I have so much peace about my jobs at this time - even if I'm still figuring out how to have balance.

Anyway, last year I posted a spiritual growth plan with what I now know are some ridiculous goals - I didn't meet many. Below is my more well-rounded goal list for 2010. Some of these will be fairly easy to meet - others, not so much.

2010 Goals

-accumulate 800 face to face hours
-attend 1 professional workshop
-read 2 books on counseling

-BSF lessons 3-5 days a week
-regular BSF attendance
-serve faithfully in Kid K’Nex
-regularly attend church services

-weekly “date” with Brian
-new addition

-long conversation with Christi – weekly
-long conversation with Jen – weekly
-face time with Jen – monthly
-face time with Christi – monthly
-develop friendship with another couple

-$1000 emergency fund
-zero balance on credit card
-building on emergency fund
-regular giving to Nicaragua/San Francisco
-maintain tithing

-stay in WW points range daily
-follow Dr’s orders

-1 getaway/vacation
-hiking 6 times

Anybody else out there care to share your goals? I'd love to see them.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Maeson's Birthday mostly

Being a child of divorce, we generally have two Christmases. This year, my siblings and my stepdad came to my house on Christmas day. My mom is still in Nicaragua and she was sorely missed at our celebration. We went very simple on the food this year - I popped two frozen lasagnas in the oven when I got home from work (yep, I worked on Christmas day - mental health crises don't take holidays ;) and everyone else brought sides - garlic bread, salad, drinks, and dessert. We mostly just hung out, but there were some gifts exchanged. Including this gift from my mom and stepdad:

Coffee from Nicaragua! A big ole 2 lb bag of it! They do know me. I took other pictures, but none of them were truly blogworthy. Probably because I was/am still learning the new camera.

On the 27th, we celebrated my niece, Maeson's birthday. She's five (5!) this year. In the time this past year that I spent without a regular job, Maeson and I hung out on weekdays. I really miss my little helper now that I'm back in the working world. Here are some pics from the night.

Maeson and friends with her cake.

This is Jack - so cute.
He got a real kick out of shooting my nephews Nerf dart gun.

The beautiful birthday girl.

Amari - really a human cartoon.
How I love my family! It's big, complicated, and often chaotic, but it's mine.

Thursday, December 24, 2009


All this Christmas eating is killing me. I know I could make different choices, but I haven't. I'm feeling full and sick - bring on normal days so I can eat with some discipline.

Christmas at the Lakehouse

Brian and I had 2 whole days off together this week! Since we were going to the lakehouse for dinner with the family anyway, we decided to go early yesterday and just be vegetables on the couch and get a little quality time in with dad and Susan.

I'm still figuring out my new camera, luckily, I have plenty of opportunity to take pictures. Here are some from yesterday.


Mike and Julie (1 month until their wedding!)

Brian and Me.

Sweet Amari watching Santa and Mrs. Claus

Devan is quite excited :)


Karis having a mini-meltdown
(too much Christmas excitement)

Me and (very short) Santa
Do you see my awesome snuggie? It's a NAP comfy from Brookstone and a Christmas gift from Dad and Susie, I'm totally enjoying it. Merry Christmas y'all!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

i'm back

So, it's been nearly two months since I last posted - that's how long I've been without a camera. What I thought was a minor problem with the camera ended up being too expensive to fix. So, I waited. And yesterday, with the money I got from my in-laws for Christmas (thanks Mike and Mernie!), I got a Nikon Coolpix L100. I've been loyal to Canon for a while, so this is a departure for me. Here's a shot of my new camera that I stole from Amazon:

I really like the camera - love the way it feels in my hands. It's big enough to wrap my hand around with out being too bulky. I still have to figure out some of the settings. But, in keeping with the mission I set out on two months ago, here are some pictures of my day.

I went to lunch with my best friend, Christi (not pictured), and her siblings. Christi and I exchanged Christmas presents and we all ate Mexican - yum!

Nikki and Cathy

Daniel and his gauged ear.

The pictures look a bit yellow to me - have to fix that...any suggestions?

Sunday, October 25, 2009

i didn't forget

this is a note to say that i didn't forget the whole take-a-pic-a-day exercise. my camera crapped out. i hope to get it back up and running soon!

Friday, October 23, 2009

One A Day

One of the benefits of getting up and out of the house before 10am is morning radio. I love morning radio shows. So a few days ago, the morning show I listen to me reminded me of a concept I'd heard before. They were talking about how some people take one photograph a day as kind of a catalog of their life.

This concept got me thinking about how hard it is for me to keep up with my blog. Part of it is because most of my life seems mundane - not blogworthy. But I thought to myself, if I post a picture on my blog everyday some of them will have to be boring! So, with that thought and a few more days of mulling it over, I'm doing it.

My first goal will be to post a pic everyday for one week - not a lofty goal, but I gotta start somewhere. Here goes:

Today I got my hair colored. Meet Melissa, my hair girl:

I dig Melissa. She's been doing my hair for at least 2 years. See her cool pink peek-a-boo hair? That's new since I last saw her. Her hair is different every time - part of the fun.

How do you feel about my awesome mohawk? I think it's swell. No after pics - guess you'll have to see me in person - - and rave :)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Not Speaking Up

My husband and I have been on a journey over the past 11 months. Last October, I quit my job. I very much felt that God was leading me to do so. It was a job that paid relatively well and made use of the master's degree for which I had worked so hard.

After 11 months, several job interviews, but no viable job - we believe God has given us a plan. Part of that plan is joining the counselor at my church and doing some counseling part time. I have been given unbelievable favor here and am so grateful. The other part of the plan - the keep us afloat financially part - is working in food service.

I have this ugly beast in me - it's name is Pride. I can feel it in my chest and it makes me slightly sick to my stomach when it begins to stir around. Pride whispers "you are a failure to have this job. You have your master's degree!"

My inner beast reared it's head today while behind the counter at my "day job." I'm bebopping along enjoying the pace and the people that food service offers and in walk two leaders from my church. Both of them end up being helped by someone else, but I feel I should say hello. Both say my name and then get a surprised/confused look on their faces. In this moment, Pride would have me say "hi there (name)! You didn't know I was working here? I am doing this because I really believe that God wants me to be a counselor at the church. And I can be such a witness to the people here....." It would have been honest. But I am learning to not try to justify myself to others, so I kept my mouth shut. And my beast was hurt - and so was I a little.

I know Jesus has something for me here. I pray that He would keep me open to learn from this situation.

Thursday, September 3, 2009


This passage has been stuck in my head for the past couple of days since I read it:

"The Lion of Judah in His present risenness pursues, tracks and stalks us here and now. When we cry out with Jeremiah, 'Enough already! Leave me alone in my melancholy,' the Shepherd replies, 'I will not leave you alone. You are Mine. I know each of my sheep by name. You belong to me. if you think I am finished with you, if you think I am a small god that you can keep at a safe distance, I will pounce upon you like a roaring lion, tear you to pieces, rip you to shreds and break every bone in your body. Then I will mend you, cradle you in My arms and kiss you tenderly.'"
-Brennan Manning, The Relentless Tenderness of Jesus

I can imagine that this imagery is troublesome to many. It is certainly more ferocious than we tend to view God. But to me it is welcome and beautiful and makes my heart cry out "I love You, Jesus!" I know myself - my tendency to choose the easy, the safe, the comfortable, the controllable - even when it comes to God. But praise Him, He knows me too and loves me and will not let me be content with a tiny, confined little world - however appealling it may be.

The above passage reminded me of a sonnet that I first read in college. In Manning's passage, God is speaking to us. In Donne's sonnet, the speaker is, I think, begging for God to pounce on him in just the way described above.

Batter my heart, three-person'd God ; for you
As yet but knock ; breathe, shine, and seek to mend ;
That I may rise, and stand, o'erthrow me, and bend
Your force, to break, blow, burn, and make me new.
I, like an usurp'd town, to another due,
Labour to admit you, but O, to no end.
Reason, your viceroy in me, me should defend,
But is captived, and proves weak or untrue.
Yet dearly I love you, and would be loved fain,
But am betroth'd unto your enemy ;
Divorce me, untie, or break that knot again,
Take me to you, imprison me, for I,
Except you enthrall me, never shall be free,
Nor ever chaste, except you ravish me.
-John Donne

Are you like me? Are you afraid that God will break you and yet you somehow long for it? It may be that this is the human condition.

Monday, August 31, 2009

quick update

here are my initial test results from the pushup/squat/situp challenges.

3 "knee" pushups - rank 1
30 squats - rank good
28 situps - rank poor

anybody wanna join me on this challenge?

Another One?

So, this is my third blog. I have one for our family (really just me, the hubs, and our dogs), which I'm not good at keeping updated. Also, there's one for the baking I do. Why the 3rd blog, you ask? There's some stuff I want to put out there that doesn't fit into either category. Mostly stuff about me: what I'm thinking, my efforts to be a healthier person, etc. I tried BlogToLose, which is a really great site, but I don't want a social network (and I don't really like the layout). So here I am with blogspot blog #3.

The more I think about it, the more I really want to talk about this healthiness thing. At present, I weigh 60 lbs more than when I met my husband - and I was overweight then. I am uncomfortable in my body - I don't like what I see in the mirror. Most of all, I HATE the voice that tells me I'm less worthwhile at this weight. So, in effort to be healthy, I want to find a way to both accept myself as I am RIGHT NOW and make disciplined eating/exercise choices.

So, in the interest of measuring progress, let's start where I am right now. I have been walking a lot lately. And I gotta tell you, I love it. I have a nike+ sport kit for my ipod that measures all my walks in distance, pace, and calories burned. Never in my life have I considered myself an athlete. You will often hear me say "I don't do organized sports." -and I still don't. But take away competition with other people and make me compete with myself and I am hooked! I love have a good long walk, or an excellent pace, or beating my goals on the nike running website. This go 'round, I've been at it for 2 weeks. I'm determined to make it a habit.

Food wise, I've been all over the place. For the most part, I believe that I have been eating more intuitively. That would be eating when I'm hungry and stopping when I'm full. I know that I'm not good at keeping that up. When something stressful comes my way, I will dive headfirst into some ice cream. As for the content, I eat very healthily (i.e. whole grains, veggies, very lean protein) at home - I eat tortilla chips (and other junk) when I'm out. Probably, I should go back to Weight Watchers - haven't really made the hard decision there yet. A lot of that has to do with the hubs - I cramp his style when I'm a WW.

Okay, one more thing before I go. Roni at RonisWeigh posted a challenge recently that I want to do. There are three strength challenges 100 pushups , 200 squats , and 200 situps. The idea is that you test yourself initially and then follow the 6 week program to attain those goals. I may do the initial test tonight.

K, that's all.