Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Life Update

I apologize for the hit and miss blogging of late.
Life has been busy and changing for me.
Between funerals, harvest festivals, packing, moving, and starting a new job, blogging has lagged.

But, I am now happily situated in the basement of my aunt's home, with my lovely cousin as a neighbor (meaning, a curtain separates our living space).

I bumped into a camp friend at work this evening, which was a pleasant surprise!.

The weather that has been causing such trauma up north has hit us, but not heavily.  The air is cold (pea coat time!).  I am still transitioning, though.  I keep asking myself, "Can I wear my black dress with my fishnet tights over my blue tights?" (I love that outfit!)

 I realized as I went to work earlier, going to my job doesn't feel like, "Oh, I'm off to work."  It feels more like, "Oh, I have this meeting and this meeting and this thing..." like when I was still in college.

 Oh, on Saturday, Trey's B League football team won their Super Bowl game!!! I've been watching Trey play football since he was...oh...about two years old?  Yep, I think he was throwing the ball better than I could.  I know he was by age three.  Also, at the game I bumped into come high school friends!  It was so fun to stand around, watch the game, and chit chat with them :)

I've rambled.  I'm sorry.  Maybe tomorrow I will have more organized thoughts or even a topic!  Actually, I have a topic, but need to finish some research to properly write about it.

Till next time, goodnight!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Exercising my Suffrage

Today I voted.
It was my second time voting.
It was my FIRST time voting in a Presidential election.
I voted absentee, since I am temporarily moving.
They filled in my information and told me when the system was ready for me.
I stepped up to the voting booth and began.
When the final screen came up, telling me my vote had been cast, a big smile came on my face.
I thought the people standing there might think I was a little odd.
They handed me an "I Voted" sticker.
I told them, "This is my first time voting in a Presidential election."
My smile didn't hide that time.
And, it was still there after walking down the stairs and out the door.

Later, while driving home, I began to think about the time table of women voting.  I realized it hasn't been THAT long.  My mind went to the scene in Mary Poppins where Mrs. Banks, the old nanny, and the house keeper sing the "Sister Suffragette" song.  I thought of all the people who had fought for women to have the right to vote, to voice their opinions as men did.  It turns out, Woodrow Wilson, my slightly distant cousin, was in favor of women's suffrage starting in 1918 (my apologies for citing Wikipedia, but they cite someone else for the fact).  In 1919, women were given the right to vote!

I am proud to be an American and to contribute my voice to the decision of whom will lead the United States of America for the next four years!  And, in the words of Mrs. Banks, "Well done, sister suffragettes!"

Don't forget to vote November 6, 2012---or absentee if need be!

Now, for your viewing pleasure:

Friday's Letters: A Month Long Week

Dear Michael, Happy Birthday week!  You are now 17! grown up : )

Dear Friday, what a busy day you are.

Dear Week, you've been full, sad, fun, and you're not done.  I can hardly remember Monday.

Dear Self, you've got to get a move on. Pack, bake a pie, absentee vote, etc. etc. etc.

Dear Numb3rs, you are an addictive show.  I love the mathematical solutions (I"m not really a math person so it is awesome!).

Dear Mama, thanks for discovering the show!  I like watching it with you : )

Dear Harvest Festival, I have to bake a pie and pick an Old Testament character to dress up as.  But, it will be FUN!

Dear God, Thank You for providing, leading, and changing me plans.  It keeps me guessing.  Also, thank You for the beautiful autumn this year.  The colors are amazing.  I can't get over how beautiful everything is.  I am constantly in awe.


My Plans...Like a Balloon in the Wind

I'm always planning the next thing.

Dream, planning, and connecting are a daily activity for my brain.
I love it.  I thrive from it.  I get frustrated by it.

Today I was thinking about my future, what is coming up, and how it will connect to the next thing.
 I realized, it could mean staying the country a little longer.
 *Quelle horreurs*

Immediately I start asking myself if I could deal with that.
It will throw a kink in all of my plans!
But, I can see how it might be beneficial.

Then it hit me (and not for the first time).
Every time I make a plan, God changes it.
Always for the best (even if I don't love it).

I need to hold my plans loosely.
God knows my loves and my passions.
He knows what I do not know.

God will put my life together in such a way that will glorify Him.
I will do the next thing and try to keep that in mind.
Life is to be lived for the glory of God.

As parents of a friend of mine wrote on a frame of their wedding pictures:
"All that matters
is the glory of God."

Photo By: K.L.R.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Happy Birthday, Little Brother!

Happy Birthday, Michael!

My brother is 17 today.
I remember the night he was born.  I was at Kae Lacy's making blackberry syrup, standing on a chair next to the stove, when my dad came to pick me up.
I remember going to the hospital to see Michael.  I tried and tried, but the nurse took him out of sight to give him a bath.

I was always told, "one day he will be bigger than you."
I am 5'4ish".  He is 6'1".

I'm so proud of him!
He'll play in the major leagues someday : )


Monday, October 22, 2012

English Show Recommendation!

I was perusing Netflix yesterday for a new show to catch my interest.
Somehow, and I don't remember how, I stumbled upon Rosemary & Thyme.
Rosemary & Thyme is an English mystery program based around two women, one is a former detective and the other is interested in plants.  As a result of different circumstances, they team up and solve mysteries they happen upon while on the job...gardening.

If you are looking for humor, this is not it.
But, if you like a bit of suspense, the beauty of England, and an interesting storyline, give this show a shot!
I really enjoy a good English show now and again.  I see real life in this.  Ok, maybe not all the mysteries, but the houses, doors, pubs, etc. makes me miss it.

Happy Watching!

Source: Overstock

Sunday, October 21, 2012

The Extrovert/Introvert Societal Downfall

How often have you heard, "I'm an introvert" or "I'm an extrovert" as an excuse for something?

I had not given much thought to these personality traits until I went to college.
Suddenly, it was a way to label oneself, almost as an excuse for behavioral tendencies.

Situation "I":  A large group of people in a public setting.  The introvert, to avoid being uncomfortable, will say, "I'm an introvert," and avoid mingling.

Situation "E":  A large group of people in a public setting.  The extrovert will be loud and possibly obnoxious, giving, "I'm an extrovert," as reason for their boisterousness. 

Yes, I did generalize and exaggerate in the examples above to make a point.

Have you heard of Emily Post's etiquette books?  They were reference material to instruct people how to prepare for an event, act in various situations, and help people become adequate, social beings.

Have you read books set in a different century, particularly in an upper class setting, and observed the manner in which people interacted with each other (Jane Austen's novels are a perfect example)?

Have you heard of finishing school or read about young girls being sent to an instructor to learn how to receive visitors and serve tea (think Felicity of the American Girl books)?

Introverts and extroverts existed back then, too.  Chances are there were ways to tell their personalities.  But, despite how a person felt in situations, they knew how to make a person feel welcome, carry on small-talk, and have an intelligent conversation with someone they had just met.

I find myself wishing I knew the art of small-talk.  I used to be the most outgoing little person.  As a child I didn't know a stranger.  As a result my dad still tells me not to talk to strangers (I'm 21).  My parents taught me manners.  I spent a great deal of my childhood interacting with adults more than children.  But, I now feel stress in situations where I don't know what subject to bring up.  Perhaps I need to become more literate in current events and have a few interesting topics ready to broach in various settings.  Actually, I do.  I don't say all of that to laud myself.  I, too, have fallen into the same ditch of allowing labels to tell me what to expect.

I argue that these labels of "extrovert" and "introvert" should not be a reason or excuse for a person's behavior.  If someone is loud and annoying, please don't tell me they are an extrovert.  They may not know how to curb their enthusiasm in various situations.

If someone is not talking, keeping to themselves, and failing to interact in a way expected of them, please do not tell me they are introverted so that I will nod understandingly and "tut tut" it away.  We won't always be comfortable, but it is important to stretch ourselves with the purpose of becoming a well-rounded individual.

I have now put a level of expectation on myself.  Certainly I will fail.  But, I hope I will be more aware of my usage of "introvert" and "extrovert."  I hope I will strive to become more well-rounded and ladylike.  Grace under pressure, considerate when approached by rudeness, humility to those lacking manners, and cordiality to all.

Jane Austen Examples for each of the listed characteristics in order:

1.  Mrs. Dashwood when her step-son came to take over her estate
2.  Miss Elinor Dashwood in response to her sister-in-law and others
3.  Emma...who did fail by responding to Miss Bates rudely
4.  Anne Elliot of Persuasion fits this category, I believe.

I welcome your thoughts on the subject!

6.5 on the Richter Scale

Do you ever have a dream that seems to last alllll night?
I had one of those.
It was so strange and very intense.

At one point I learned a friend from school was dead.  But, there was something odd about it.  I was very upset (obviously), but come to find out, it was a JOKE!  He had decided to pretend to be dead.  Then, I was in NYC going to school (which is actually true).  But, we lived in a skyscraper on the sixty-something floor.  I had been warned to expect a 6.5 magnitude earthquake the next morning.  I was all prepared to run out, and nothing happened (except I WALKED up sixty some floors of stairs to avoid being stuck in the elevator).  We went to school, did some weird running and ball game on VERY steep hills, and began to pack (I had a lot of little things to pack...very tedious).  But, then I had to expect the earthquake sometime that evening.

Needless to say, I awoke, finally.
The dream was long and very detailed.

Do you remember the dreams you have?  Or at least some of them?
Often, when I remember a dream like this, I will mull over it throughout the day.

I have one dream that I wrote out completely in ninth grade.  I doubt I will EVER forget it.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Foliage Festival Fun

Today went mostly according to plan...with a few changes.

Abi ALMOST scored a goal.  It crossed the line, but before it could roll into the goal the other other team kicked it out : (

But, she was all over the field.  Those 5 year olds are very cute playing soccer.  One coach had to remind them to not fight with their teammates over the ball.  Oh, kiddos learning sports.

I went home with Aunt Anna and Abi before we all headed to the Fall Foliage Festival.  Aunt Anna had to help with a booth, and Abi and I walked around, looked at cool stuff, ate hot dogs and cotton candy, and visited a cool antique store (that little girl has great taste!).

When I got home I was wiped out.  So, I watched a Hallmark movie I had started once before, but at that time I did not like it.  Oh my goodness, it is incredible what the TV screen does to a movie.  Dumb HD makes some things look like soap operas.  On our non-HD TV it looked normal (call me crazy, but I'm okay with that).

An invigorating walk followed by a search for a lost cell phone leaves me prepared for a cup of tea, a little dessert, and another Hallmark movie : )

Have a fab Saturday night!

She wanted me to take her picture with the lamp!

Happy Saturday!

Photo by K.L.R.
 Today is going to be full of fun!

I am going to see my cousin play soccer in about fifteen or twenty minutes.  She is five.

My town is having its Fall Foliage Festival this weekend and I hope to go down this afternoon and enjoy perusing the stalls, seeing people I know, and enjoying the fall foliage, which is gorgeous!

Later I will try and finish packing my school stuff away.  It is annoying getting everything organized satisfactorily.

But, as always I am open to plans changing (hopefully in a good way)!

Happy Saturday : )

Any fun plans in your day?

Friday, October 19, 2012

Friday's Letters: Life

Photo by K.L.R.
 Dear Daisy Elizabeth Daw, Welcome to the family!  I can't wait to meet you in person (hopefully before you reach your first birthday....or even six month birthday : ) )!

Dear Friday, you come with a full day: substitute teaching, a visit to the eye doctor, and maybe a perusal of the Fall Foliage Festival.

Dear Weekend, hooray!  You have arrived and brought the Fall Foliage Festival with you!  My first one in  close to eight years (crazy, I know!).

Dear God, thank you for this beautiful fall weather!  I am overwhelmed each time I look outside, drive over the mountain, or soak in the beauty.

Dear Nanny (as in The Nanny), I can't just watch one episode.

Dear Mama, I love having a show to share now that White Collar is on a break.
(a few years late, but she discovered Numb3rs...and totally gets it, while I just understand parts).

Dear Deborah, so fun Skyping and Pinteresting and planning ; )

Dear God, thank you for hearing and answering prayers.  You are a great God.


Thursday, October 18, 2012

A Beautiful Soul

Photo by K.L.R.

The soul can be a beautiful thing.

I was just pondering a person and thinking about what makes them "them."
By outward appearance, they are just a human being.
Their soul is what shines through and makes them special.
When they show that side it allows connectivity with other people's souls, with my soul.
I see their loves, their hates, their sorrows, their joys.
Therefore, when I see them, I see them through the lense of their soul.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

'Call Me Maybe' Olympic Style

A friend of mine posted this on Facebook in August.  I tried to share it then and it didn't work.
But, I was just thinking about it the other day and wanted to finally share it.
Every time I hear this song I picture these guys.
It makes the song awesome instead of annoying.

I want to:
1. Know how they did it.
2. Be friends with the entire team.

I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Monday, October 8, 2012

High School Seems Forever Ago

Today was stressful, productive (although it could have been more so), and fun. 

Lots of phone calls, emails, and a couple episodes of The Nanny (always producing a laugh).

A few days ago I got the urge to watch High School Musical 1 & 2.  Feel free to laugh.
Anyway, tonight I watched the first one.  I hadn't seen it in more than three years.  They all look like babies.  And, I saw all the high school stereotypes (And realities). 

My thoughts throughout:

He looks so young.
She looks so young.
Look at their clothes.
Oh, I knew someone who dressed like that.  And that.
Why do skaters dress the way the do?
Etc., etc., etc.

Overall, an enjoyable experience.  A bit of reminiscing and wondering how I will view the movies as I continue to grow older (or any show I enjoyed at a younger age).

Did you watch the High School Musical movies as they came out?

December 2007.  Later that night we had a HSM Marathon of 1&2
We were missing one in the picture...but she drowned in the bathtub was taking a bath.

Turning a Spade With the Crew

Blog Challenge (that I've been thinking about for a few days):  What two brands of clothes would I wear for the rest of my life?

I have made one definite decision and one maybe decision.

J. Crew

Their clothes are beautiful, well made, and classy.

I've been wanting a navy pea coat!  Love this one!

Kate Spade

I always find myself attracted to her styles, accessories, etc.

This dress reminds me of the Don Loper dress Lucy chooses in The Fashion Show!
 What brands do you love?

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Buddy the Elf

I have this friend whose eyes disappear when he smiles.
He has hilarious experiences while sitting in church.
And, his stories are side-splitting.

Today I saw a video that reinforced this humor.
Are you a fan of the movie Elf?
Regardless, watch the video.  Now : )

Friday, October 5, 2012

Friday's Letters

Dear Friday, I feel like I deserve you more than I did last week. 

Dear Week, you were full of surprises!  Woohoo! 

Dear Elizabeth and Becky and Uncle Gerardo, Happy Birthday Week!

Dear High Schoolers, you guys are awesome!  I love subbing for your teachers!

Dear Weather, tomorrow you are supposed to cool down!  Does this mean I get to wear warmer clothes?

Dear White Collar, you are the best show ever. 

Dear Matt Bomer, you should really dress like Neal Caffrey does instead of your khakis shorts and sneakers.

Dear Sleep, you and I are going to be buddies tonight!

Dear God, thank you for beautiful colors on the trees as I drive to and from school!


Thursday, October 4, 2012

Sold for Sex

Human trafficking.
Sex trafficking.

The list could go on and on.

We've all heard about it.
We've seen the videos.
We've listened to the presentations.

But, in the comfort of my home, away from the horror that is some people's every day reality, I can forget it exists, until I remember the next time.

International Justice Mission, mission agencies, celebrities, Vogue, and so many others are speaking out about it, wanting to be a part of fighting this evil.

An acquaintance with whom I studied in NYC wrote an article for WORLD Magazine on this topic.  It is profound, yet written in a story-telling manner.  Please, take the time to read it in its entirety.

If you see something, say something
By Chelsea Kolz

Ten Little Words

I believe I have truly met a challenge in my Blog Challenge list.

I am supposed to write the story of my life in ten words.
Is this possible??
Let's find out.

Moving and traveling, family, friends, experiences, love, laughter, memories, dreaming.

These words describe me in my life for the past 21 years.

Life stories are not meant to be so condensed.

Part of one side of my awesome family!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

With Pen and Paper I Pray

The blog challenge I am up to wants me to write about how I want to grow closer to God.

I don't mind being personal and opening up, but I'm not going to go into that here.

But, I will share one way that I love spending time with God.


I LOVE writing to God.  My prayers.  My thoughts.  My desires.  My praise.  My thanks.

I am a verbal processor, so I pray out loud, too.  But, journaling means I can look back at what I prayed.  I can see God's faithfulness...and my sometimes progress.

My journal didn't tell me how many pages it came with.  So, rather than spending the time to count, I just number every page as I finish it (come close to finishing it).  When I fill up the book, I will have a surprise number!

Do you ever have the thought while writing that some day someone might read through your journal?  Your spouse?  Your child?  A fan if you become famous?  An historian if you become extra famous?

I'll admit.  The thought does occasionally, more frequently that I care to admit, cross my mind.

Why Am I So Tired?


God blew my very recent prayer and thought out of the water.  I attended my first BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) meeting.  THEN, I sat in on/gave input at the high school bible study that is starting.  (Made me miss my Apostles kids so much!)

It is my cousin's birthday, and I surprisingly got to see her!!!  And her sweet little girls.  AWESOME surprise.  Happy Birthday!!!

It is also Becky's birthday!  Happy Birthday, my dear Fern!

I scheduled my trip to UVA to rep AMBEX!  Whoop!

I sat through my first presidential debate as a registered voter.  Four years ago...I didn't have an official say.  My one blog response:  Mr. President, Germany makes better cars than the USA.  Please don't claim otherwise.

Now, you ask?  Bed soon, my friend!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Writer Forgetful! I Found A Poem!

I was on Pinterest a couple of days ago when a particular pin caught my eye.
I clicked on it, and it took me to a poem.
And a beautiful poem it is.
Analyzing myself, I am forgetful, but I don't know if I am writer forgetful.
I could use it as an excuse, though.
Because I remember the impractical things.

Anyway, found on Of Heights & Hollows, here is the poem.
Writers are forgetful,
but they remember everything.
They forget appointments and anniversaries,
but remember what you wore,
how you smelled,
on your first date…
They remember every story you’ve ever told them -
like ever,
but forget what you’ve just said.
They don’t remember to water the plants
or take out the trash,
but they don’t forget how
to make you laugh.
Writers are forgetful
they’re busy
the important things.
I'd love to hear your thoughts on the poem!

Christmas Favourites!

Blog Challenge:  Favourite Holiday!

"Hi, I'm Kirsten, I listen to Christmas during months that aren't after Thanksgiving and before New Years!"

Yes, Christmas is my favourite holiday.  I've always loved it.

After I was born my mother listened to Christmas carols.  I was born in July.

When I was little I called nativities "festivities."  Can you already tell I was an extrovert?

The whole Christmas season gives off the cozy, warm, aura.  Some foods even taste like Christmas.  They may not even have cinnamon in them.

My best Christmas present memory is when I got all my American Girl Dolls (Kirsten and Felicity), their accessories, and in my stocking was a white little statue that opened at the bottom and held a pretty ring.  It sounds very Elsie Dinsmore, doesn't it?

I love the family gatherings, candle light services, and solos of O Holy Night.

We used to open a present from my Grandma in England on Christmas Eve.

Oh, and Grandma Bush's Coffee Cake on Christmas Morning.  Oh. My. Word.

During the Christmas Eve service my grandfather reads The Visited Planet.  Please go read it!

One of my favourite Christmas songs (that tells me it is Christmas) is Mannheim Steamroller's Hallelujah.  So beautiful.

Then, during my Freshman year at college the Freshman girls decorated the Freshman guys dorm.  It was SO much fun.  AND, this is what happens when you leave a camera to catch their first reactions...the Freshman guys...not those upperclassman.

Do you have any special traditions or memories?
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