Trucks are prohibited...but you are always welcome

Tuesday, December 27, 2011


You are quiet, but when you choose to speak your words only benefit those who hear.
You have grown old before your time because the weight of the world rests heavy on your heart, but you have never lost the childlike way you look at the world.
You hold loosely to the things you have, you count it all as an undeserved gift. You give freely, the only natural response to being so blessed, you say.
Music comes from your fingertips, your mouth, and your soul; we both dance to the melody.
You hope all things, believe all things, love all things, and every day I thank God that one of those things is me.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Old soul young soul

Yesterday, I sat in a coffee shop sipping hot tea, my fingers working nimbly on a cross-stitch pattern. Unwilling to be guilted into leaving the happy haven of my handiwork and personal thoughts, I turned my phone to silent and gingerly slipped it into my purse. That day, I felt I was an old soul in a young body.
Today, I wanted to run from my responsibilities, to be reckless, careless, shiftless... to fulfill my desires despite the inevitable consequences. Impulsive, petulant, naive, and hopeful, I felt I was a young soul trapped in an old body.
I think most people carry several different ages in their hearts at all times. Children act like adults, adults act like children, and eventually the lines begin to blur.

Saturday, December 17, 2011


Sometimes you just find yourself sitting there, cutting your food and thinking, "I'm just one mistake away from an adventure."

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Mo' money, mo' problems.

I've started my big girl nursing job. I can't describe how much this job has stretched my comfort zone, half the time I get home and can't believe at where I've ended up. I mean that in both good and bad ways.
I'm learning to serve.
I'm learning patience.
I'm learning my capacity to do what needs to be done.
I'm learning just what I'm made of.
I've had an up-and-down week. On the downside, my first week on the job was rough. Like... REALLY rough. To top it all off, I've caught myself the flu despite getting the flu shot! Bugger.
On the up-side, I just got the new Bon Iver album on vinyl, it's everything I hoped it would be and more. Except for one track that sounds like a 90s pop abomination. But I'll let it slide this time. If you haven't heard this album yet, go listen to it right now! It will change your life!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Sept 15, 1945

Sometimes, the wisest words come from people who don't know what year it is.

She looked at me with unseeing eyes, a trembling hand, and a drawer of stolen trinkets;
"You are lovely, it doesn't matter what anyone else thinks and it doesn't matter what you think.
If you don't like where you are, if you aren't happy, then get out. You're too young to be unhappy. But if you have found something that you love, or someone you love, you never let that go."

Yes, she may not know who the president is... but she speaks more truth than I have heard in a long time.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


Picture yourself as friends with yourself.
Now think about all the things you tell yourself every day.
"Why aren't your eyes bigger?"
"Why did you just say something so stupid?"
"You should probably work out more".

Would you be friends with you?
Today, I'm going to try to be a better friend.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Blue Jeans are Mean

Months of work on my self esteem
Years of being ok with my little imperfections

All forgotten in one afternoon of jean shopping.

All I can think to soothe my fragile, shivering ego is a lovely Regina Spektor lyric:
"I've got a perfect body, but sometimes I forget. I've got a perfect body, 'cause my eye lashes catch my sweat"

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Some labels assume action.
For example, before I got a nursing job, I would tell people I was a nurse because I had the license and the title. The next question was inevitably, "Oh, where at?" The label of "nurse" assumed that I was, somewhere, somehow, actively being a nurse.
I believe that to me, the title of "Christian" should be the same way, a label that assumes action. That by carrying the title, you are somewhere, somehow, actively being a Christian. Whether you are in the unreached parts of the world telling the good news or simply spending your time actively and intentionally loving others around you, you are earning that label.
So when we say that we are Christians, let us live in such a way that their next question will logically be, "Oh, where at?"
Does that make any sense?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Find me

Find me that love that makes me a better me and not a better us
Find me that love that's for who I am now, not the person that I was
Who would want to obsess over me?
I will admit, I've been broken before and the glue is wearing thin
I will admit it's getting harder harder to let anybody in
But there's more to me than meets the eye
Someone might see, if they just try
Who would want to obsess over me?
Maybe my own love can set me free.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


I've been painting with my eyes closed lately
The colors and strokes haphazardly strewn about the canvas
Guided by my impulses, guided by the hands of those around me
I open my eyes;
Before them, a reckless, violent piece of art I don't recognize
My signature, scrawled in red
In the bottom, right-hand corner.

Monday, October 10, 2011


I can forgive you; I just don't want to.
Forgiving means letting go of the anger,
and as ashamed as I am of this, I enjoy being angry.
Being angry with you is so, so much easier than missing you.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


Don't read this. Go to or and smile, because if you read this is will only depress you.
I was the most optimistic, open, loving, happy, care-free child ever.
Now, I find myself incredibly pessimistic, bitter, jaded, hopeless, and unhappy.
I don't know that I even believe in the things I once held in the highest priority.
I don't know that I believe in love.

My beat is correct

I'm not perfect, neither are you.
I'm not perfect, but I am at peace
I'm at peace with my faults, I'm at peace with my scars and callouses
For the very reason that they are part of who I am
And despite the blow done to me at your hand
I like very much who I am.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Lonely Hearts Club

My house is filled with brokenness. Three girls, three newly ended relationships. Luckily, we are able to console each other and use each other's experiences in our own lives. I have noticed a pattern in each of us, and it roughly follows the Kubler-Ross model of grief. It looks a little bit like this:
1. Denial- "I'm fine, I'm better off anyway." "This is only a short break, we're gonna get back together."
2. Anger- "I hate that %&F&^$!! Eat $#!# and die!!!"
3. Bargaining- "Maybe if I lose some weight, act sweeter, date someone else and make him jealous... we'll get back together."
4. Depression- "I miss him so much! Why doesn't want to be with me??"
5. Acceptance- "It's for the best, I need to find someone that treats me how I deserve to be treated."

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Dance with me, lead me

Once I danced with a talented swing dancer. "I have two left feet... no, SIX left feet", I exclaimed in protest as he took my hand with a saucy grin. "Trust me... just keep walking", he whispered as the panic started to make my fingers shake. I did as I was told, I just kept putting one foot in front of the other as his strong, confident grip spun and moved me. We were dancing, though I don't know a step. My life feels much like that dance felt. I have no idea what I am doing here in this town, in this life. I hear that same whisper, saying "Trust me... just keep walking". As I periodically look around, I realize that my partner, my leader, my Savior is perfectly choreographing, directing, and guiding me with His strong hand. All I had to do was reach out and take the hand waiting to lead me to the dance.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A bit of wisdom

This is a bit of wisdom that I have recently acquired. It seems simple, and I am almost sure I have read it before somewhere... perhaps on a box of cereal? But it took me till now to understand it. When you align yourself with anyone, a friend, a boyfriend/girlfriend, the intimacy level and commitment level need to be as equal as possible. I have a habit of becoming extremely intimate with people very soon after I meet them because I am so open and honest (and by intimate I do not mean physical intimacy, rather emotional/spiritual intimacy). Then if the friendship or relationship takes a bad turn, it is that much more painful because of how much of myself I shared and poured into that person. But if I had waited, established a deeper connection and had a good idea that it would stand the test of time, I could have slowly eased into that level of intimacy. Men, be cautious with the hearts of the women around you. The heart is like a room within a room within a room within a room. As you get to know her, she will open new doors and allow you closer and closer to the core of who she is. But you have no right to demand entrance to that innermost place unless you plan and expect to stay there a very, very long time. Commitment must match intimacy. So simple, why did it take me till now to realize?

Monday, September 19, 2011

In the morning comes Joy

I am Joyful
I am Lovely
I can do all things but two:

1. Forget that I loved you
2. Forget that you no longer love me

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Cheer up, buttercup

I've been feeling blue lately, so for kicks and giggles and to cheer myself up, I'm going to make a list of things that make me glad to be alive. You should do the same!

Skipping rocks. Mixing ice cream and warm brownies. Old book smells. Putting my hands in bowls of flour. Letting ladybugs use my fingertips as launching pads. Climbing trees. Watching squirrels eat. Watching tv wrapped in a warm blanket. Biking really fast through the woods. Skeleton keys. Making people laugh. Trying new things. Finishing a book. Painting my nails. Playing music or listening to a really good song. Babies laughing. Sunglasses. Sunsets, sunrises, puffy clouds. Standing on my head and pretending the ceiling is the floor. Coffee smells. Polishing silver. Antique shops. Bubble tea. Hearing people talk about things they are passionate about. Complimenting people. Old watches. Books with notes written in them. Hearts. Frozen grapes. Cold pizza. Pancakes with peanut butter. Holding hands. When it's raining even though the sun is out. Storms. Making faces. New pennies. Wearing other peoples' watches.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

I want to know

I want you to know, I'm not ok without you
I was fine before you, but now... I can't go back to those days
The days when I was ignorant of your existence, your smile, your heart....
Yes, I expected too much of you
Yes, you were selfish
But all I want to know
is that you aren't ok without me, too.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


I always joke that I can only write songs when I am in love, or heartbroken. I have written more songs this month than I have in the past two years put together. Funny how my creative mind is fueled by passion. I just wish that my music came through an easier channel, because all of these feelings are driving me insane! Do you have a muse? Is it a person, thing or a feeling?

Saturday, August 27, 2011


You know how balloons are really, really hard to blow up at first, but then once they've been blown up it's super easy to do it again? I think hearts are the opposite of that. I find that each time you let someone in and they leave, it gets harder and harder each time. It's like they leave scars when they leave that harden and make it that much more difficult to open up the next time. I think to myself, it may be easier to just not.... to lock it all away to prevent any further damage. But I think that's against my nature, and against human nature. We want to be known, we want to be loved, not just protected. But be patient with me, because it will take you that much longer to make me believe that you won't run as soon as I tip my hand.


One unique characteristic of a major life change (or more specifically, a move to a new location) is that it affords you the opportunity to reinvent yourself. At your new location, it is likely that no one there will know that in middle school your staple clothing item was parachute pants, or that in high school you barfed into your tuba at the year-end recital. Your past is a blank slate, as is your future. So now I find myself in the state of blankness, but rapidly being written upon by the things I say, do, wear, eat... Who do I want to be? The old has fallen away, and now I must decide. Do I like who I am? If not, I must change quickly because my window of opportunity for first impressions is rapidly closing.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

everything is illuminated

Everything is illuminated in the light of the past
But everything is also illuminated by the light of the present as well
The present light can even illuminate details in the past we may have missed
or purposefully overlooked,
overlooked for the sake of the future

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Am I

Am I kidding myself that nothing will change after everything has changed?
My forced, desperate attempts to cling to the strings and precious fibers of my happy past are unraveling them faster
and faster
and faster.
I obstinately try to shove my new life into the shrunken, beloved garment of the past, which both causes me pain and is rending my worn memories at the seams.
Holding so tightly to the smoke of an extinguished flame that my nails make my palms bleed.
It's time to let go.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

I was walking... (inspired by my sister)

I was walking and thinking,
(which is the only thing I can do while walking.)
And felt safe and confident on the edge of a cliff
Then I realized that two feet
24 inches
was all that separated me from death (or at least many broken bones)
How close we all are to the end
A few steps to the right or left
A quick turn of the car wheel to the same
And our futures will vanish without so much as a whispered protest
Yet my actions stink of invincibility
My voice betrays my confidence (as if I will never have a last word)
Perhaps it's best, if I knew the danger surrounding my every moment,
I would never be on this cliff.
I would have missed this view.
And I would have never so foolishly given my heart to you,
the most dangerous thing in my life.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Sweet nothings

Many words describe me as a woman; independent, headstrong, loyal, and at times jealous... but the word that describes best my heart is without a doubt ROMANTIC. I wish I could deny it, but something leapt within me as I read the immortal words of proud Mr. Darcy in Pride and Prejudice, watched Molly Ringwald kiss Jake over the light of her birthday cake, and listened to "In Your Eyes" blast on the boombox held by a lovesick John Cusack. There is something about these unabashed gestures of affection that reaches a part of the human heart nothing else quite can. Mind you, I am not a typical girl... I detest the notebook and gag at cheesy chick flicks, but I will never forget the romantic things said to me in earnest. The words of my prom date upon seeing me for the first time, a profession of love from a high school flame, or the small, loving gestures shown by a dear friend. I treasure these words and actions in my heart like pearls, taking them out and putting them on in the mirror when I need to feel pretty. Ugh... gross.


Amidst a sea of flash cards, a quicksand pit of textbooks, and a desert of online review exams, I have found an oasis; on Netflix there is a television series called "10 things I hate about you", which is Shakepseare's 'Taming of the shrew' in teen drama form. (not the movie version with julia stiles and heath ledger) It is, for lack of a better word, stupid. Well, I suppose asinine is a better word... but my point is that this television series is a cesspool of poor acting, unrealistic dialogue, and predictable plotline. The characters are as shallow as they are attractive (very, very attractive), with the emotional depth of a carrot.
I am absolutely addicted.
With the workout my brain gets 99% of the day, it is so, so, SO nice to watch something that takes zero effort to appreciate. I don't have to think, ponder, mull over, or debate what I see on the screen. I just accept it for what it is, a blessed abomination. Thank you, Hollywood, thank you for this. Also, you should be ashamed of yourselves.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Madrid, el ultimo dia

This is it, friends; the last hurrah, the cherry on the sundae, the final countdown. Tomorrow morning I leave at 7:30 am for the airport. I'm feeling very sentimental as I leave these people I have called my family, so I will now give you an explanation of each person and why they are fantastic.
Alberto: The father of the family, works for the government doing nature conservation work. One of the most knowledgeable people I have ever met. Can talk to you for hours about geography, literature, music, history, politics, nature, or architecture. He is an amazing father, and calls his daughter "cookie". Funny, gracious, active, vivacious, generous, and a darn good cook to boot.
Concha: The mother of the family. Also works in Madrid. A charming, lovely, patient woman who loves to laugh, dance, and talk. Thoughtful, sweet and loving, is always looking to help or make you feel more comfortable. She is an amazing example of a wife and mother and has made me feel so at home.
Celia: My host sister, she has been so patient is showing me the ropes of life in Spain. With a quick wit and incredible sense of humor, she always keeps me laughing. She takes after her father in both humor and intelligence, and also can give you detailed information about a number of subjects. She studies architecture, and so has a special eye for the incredible buildings that adorn Spain. Thoughtful and caring like her mother, she has also made me feel like one of the family. After only a few weeks, I already feel like we are sisters.
Guillermo: I know Guillermo the least since he was only here for two days of my stay but from what the family has told me, he is a typical 17 year old boy. Active and fanatical about futbol, loves to play video games, hang out with friends, and eat.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Madrid, dia I don't know, I lost track

Wow. What an incredible week this has been. I said a heartbreaking goodbye to my group of girls from English Camp, I will dearly miss those little monos. I hope to keep in touch via email/snail-mail. Spent the evening with the family, and the next day we traveled to Concha's village. It was the most quaint, glorious example of classic Spanish architecture and a simply beautiful landscape. Spent the day eating an incredible feast, laughing with the grandparents and uncles at the house, going for walks through the countryside, and napping. At the house there were a multitude of fruit trees that you could eat right off of. Plums, apples, grapes, nuts, and mirabelles. They were mind-blowingly amazing. Around 7 Celia and I left for her grandparents flat in Madrid, which we had all to ourselves for the weekend. We got dressed, ate dinner, and hit the downtown area. The party scene on Saturday nights is nuts, and if you are two young girls walking, men approach you every block or so and offer free drinks if you will visit their club. We paid for one drink the entire night. After much dancing and beating off the boys with sticks, we took the bus home and collapsed exhausted into our beds. Today we went a outdoors flea market for most of the afternoon. It was magnificent, so much great stuff I wanted but all I bought were two friendship bracelets for Celia and I and a hand-crafted leather book cover. Tomorrow is my last day here, I am verklempt. (it's yiddish, look it up) I have grown to love this family, this city, and this country. America, I love you dearly but now that I have breathed the Spanish air, yours will never smell quite as sweet.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Madrid, dia once

The second week of English camp is half over, and I find myself divided. One half of me is exhausted, worn out, and homesick. The other half has become infatuated with Spain, my family here, and my girls at camp. My two loves, pulling me in opposite directions of a vast, blue ocean. I spent the day with Celia in Madrid yesterday, we watched some amazing contemporary dance street performers and did a little shopping. I wish I had the time and money to see a show here, Madrid is an amazing center for theater. My one qualm about living in the midwest is the lack of culture. But as lovely as it is here, it will be nice to be in a place where I can understand everything that is said to me. The voices of the people around me are often white noise, with gestures I recognize but words I don't. Well, friends it is time for my afternoon nap. Adios, my loves.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Madrid, dia ocho

Money, money and more money!! I have spent so much today, but hey... how often will I get to shop in Madrid, yeah? Vale, Vale, the day started out splendidly, with a breakfast of churros y porros con chocolate with the familia. Despues, fui a iglesia para el servicio. The church service was good, but a little long. After church, we had lunch and then Celia and I headed to downtown Madrid to shop. It was ammaazziiinnnggggg!!!! So many great shops, but everything was so expensive. I got some good deals though, and bought everything that was on my "to-buy" list. Now I am broke, but fashionable. That's an even trade, right?

Friday, July 8, 2011

Madrid, dia seis

Feeling the homesickness periodically throughout the day, usually when something reminds me of home or I have especially pronounced difficulty with communication. I miss my home, I miss my friends, I miss Devin, I miss my family, and I miss Greyhouse. But Spain is beautiful, my host family is incredible, and I look forward to the rest of my time here. Camp was fun but exhausting, I could feel every inch of this Friday pounding in my bones. A fun week all in all, but I am drained. I don't have the energy to put much thought into this post (I'm sorry) So here is a rundown of a typical day for me here.
7am- wake up, shower and breakfast
8:15 walk to the school for English camp
9-4:30 Camp hours
4:30: 6 ice cream with camp group or laying by the pool with family
6-8: merienda and siesta (snack and nap)
8-10: run and shower
10-11: study or talk with family
11-12: dinner
12-1:30am: skype with devin
1:30am BED!!! then repeat all over again.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Madrid, day 5

Sorry for the lack of blog yesterday, after camp I hopped the train with 4 camp counselors and jetted to downtown Madrid. The city was gorgeous, we saw a phenomenal cathedral and an Egyptian temple. The cherry on the sundae was the fantastic (but expensive) tapas bar in the Plaza. I plan to return to the Plaza Mayor because I did not actually do any shopping, just sightseeing. After a long, long day of being a turista, I returned home around 11pm just when the family was sitting down to dinner. We talked and ate until 12, then a skype date with my lovely boyfriend. I felt bad because I was so exhausted from the day's activities that I could barely carry on a coherent conversation. Today was another great day at camp. My group continues to grow closer as the days go by, one of my girls even brought me a home made bracelet! Preciosa!! I brought them all gifts of American money, which they loved. Camp is physically and mentally exhausting, but I am really enjoying my time. I have never been a camp counselor before and have been doubting my leadership skills. But I got some encouraging words from the camp organizer, which instilled more confidence in my performance. More tomorrow!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Madrid, dia tres

Action packed day. Today was the first day of English Camp, it did not start well with me getting hopelessly lost on the way to the school. Ay de mi!! But it got much better as I was assigned a group of four 3rd grade girls who are just darling. Within a few hours they were climbing on me and clinging como monos en un arbol. It was a long, tiring six hours but I had so much fun, and I am so excited for tomorrow. Seccion de deportes went fairly smoothly, with only a few rough patches with the 1st and 2nd graders. Those kids are cray cray!!! After camp, Celia and I had merienda together then laid out by the pool. We went for a quick run once the sun went down, then had dinner with the family around 11. I had authentic Spanish empanadas for the first time, I loved every bite. I also got to try all sorts of new fruits. After dinner we went to the central park to meet her friends, who were waiting there. It was a fun, relaxing evening and I had a fun time with her friends (though I had trouble understanding the conversation) and we made plans to go shopping in Madrid, backpacking in the mountains, and visiting some of the landmarks like the castles and art museums. I don't know how I will fit it all into two short weeks! More to come.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Madrid, dia dos

One day down, I feel like i have been here a week already. I love the pace of Tres Cantos (TC is a small community outside of Madrid) because they live life slowly, and with enjoyment. They enjoy each other´s company, they enjoy meals, and they enjoy living each day to the fullest. ¨Work to live, not live to work¨, as my host father says. Today was training day at the English camp. they assigned us to groups (I´m doing sports for a group of 4th graders) and prepped us on what to expect for the next two weeks. I have made some amazing new friends, the volunteers here come from all over the world. There are groups from Arizona, California, England, and Sweden to name a few. I am enjoying practicing my very limited Spanish, they are all very patient with me. It is beautiful here, and the food is just amazing. This saturday the group plans to travel to Segovia, where many of the ancient architecture still stands. Also, my host family and I are planning a trip to the mountains for hiking. Friends, i can not describe how wonderful it is here. I would not hesitate to move to Spain, not one bit. But don´t tell my mom!!! (Te amo, madre!! ;P )

Saturday, July 2, 2011


Guess where I am, friends... MADRID!!!! I arrived this morning (the time change threw me off... 3am my time, 9am their time) and was picked up at the airport. I made a new friend on the plane, a student from UCLA studying abroad for a month. we talked about getting people together to go to downtown Madrid this weekend, i really hope that all works out. yay for new friends in unfamiliar places! I met my camp director and my host family, they are all just the most amazing people. my host family is fantastic and i am already feeling at home. they are introducing me to all kinds of new foods and experiences, and helping me practice my spanish. tomorrow is training day for camp on monday, i am so nervous but also really excited. my host parents are alberto and concha, my 16 yr old host brother is quillermo, and my 21 year old host sister is Celia. they are so welcoming and friendly. the only thing thats hard to get used to is the standard greeting, which is a double cheek kiss.I must admit, I am not used to being that close to perfect strangers but i am getting the hang of it. oh and also, the meal time is so strange. they have lunch around 4 and dinner around 10! very very strange. but the food is fantastic. i will write more later but for now we are all going to the pool to escape the oppressive heat. farewell from Spain!!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Ripples in a puddle

It's funny how things happen in a rapid chain reaction, feeding off each other like ripples in water. A week ago I had no idea what the next few months would hold. Now I have a new city, new house, and new housemates. This all in the span of a few days! The Lord works in mysterious ways, and I have a feeling good things are in store for the next year.

Monday, June 27, 2011

I wish...

I wish I had a close girlfriend that I could tell anything to
I wish I was a little taller
I wish things didn't have to change
I wish I was more talented
I wish my dad could be home for my birthday, and for Christmas
But I did get one wish that I've wished for every day for as long as I can remember....
I wished for you, dear.
And I feel like the most blessed girl in the world.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

10 quirky facts (stolen from Amber Rose)

I stole this from Amber Rose at Laughing With Broken Eyes (She's a dear, check out her blog... I mean it!), a list of 10 quirky facts about me. I have oodles but these are the most prevalent/interesting, I think.
1. I sing. constantly. I hum, whistle, or sing when I am bored, thinking, sad, nervous, happy, busy, and I suspect even sleeping. This can be very frustrating to others, especially when I have a certain song stuck in my head. But see, the thing is, when I sing a song I can hear the song in my head so I don't realize I am singing. I'm just listening to music.
2. I love the smell of my own hair. When I was little I used to ball my hair in my hand and suck my thumb as a comfort thing.
3. When I meet someone, I have to say their name immediately after they tell me or I will forget forever.
4. I compulsively lie to strangers, most times to make myself seem more interesting or to make the conversation flow better
5. My favorite feeling in the world is my hands in flour. But I love touching most soft things.
6.When I walk on sidewalks, I take shorter or longer steps to avoid stepping on cracks.
7. I get really grouchy if I go too long without listening to music, or if I go for too long without a hug.
8. I love to combine words or shorten words. For example, totally= totes, chocolate+ latte= chatte, etc. Yes, I am aware of how juvenile and obnoxious it is.
9. No matter where I am, I feel at home if there is a cat around.
10. When I eat colored candies like M&Ms, I arrange them in rainbow order and eat them until there are equal amounts of each color, then finish them in rainbow order.

Power of observation

One of my pet peeves is people who make less than positive observations on the appearances of others. They may not say it in a negative light, but it's still not a compliment. Most of people's self-image comes from feedback they receive from others, so when you make a comment about someone else you may be shaping how they view themselves, either for the positive or negative. That's a tremendous responsibility, and I think it would be better left alone. For example, these are things I probably would have never known if someone hadn't told me:

- I have big teeth

- I have a small head

- I have a big butt

- I have weird looking feet

- I am shaped like a boy

These are all things that are part of my self image that would not have been there if someone had not told me. Do you really want that responsibility? If you can't say anything nice then don't say anything at all. 

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Day 3 pt 2

Being on the road has put a single word in my mind: "Leave". I have this gnawing, prodding feeling that change for me is on the horizon. The make-over was only the first step, my insides are turning over, folding in on itself in an effort to become what it longs to be. I feel... I feel like I have to leave where I have called home for the past four years. It wasn't my plan, but it feels right. As long as I stay there I will be content, comfortable, and even happy... but I will remain the same. Same isn't an option for me anymore. Donald says, "We must change or we will die.... I want to change because it is God's way." I feel similarly, that I will die if I don't change, or at least some part of me will. So if I know that I need to and I want to be changed, then why are my hands and feet shaking the way they are?

Day 3

The day has just begun, so I may edit this post if much more happens. As much as I love the adventuring, "roughing it" spirit, I will say that a motel beats the pants off of sleeping in the car. Woke up early for some in-room aerobics, then showered and had a continental breakfast of Raisin Bran as a nod of the head to Don Miller in "Through Painted Deserts". (Read it if you haven't) Breakfast was an experience. I spilled my coffee, offering a mumbled apology of, "I'm nothing but trouble..." to the kind employee who helped clean up the mess. I watched "The Colbert Report" and enjoyed my cereal, despite almost feeling the six people in the room wonder what the hell I was doing there. Every time anyone asks me who I am and what I am doing, I make up a different story... for funsies, really. If I'm figuring out who I am, why not try on a few different personas? So far I've been an aspiring writer moving to Portland, a traveling musician auditioning for a band, and a new graduate on a pilgrimage searching for my place in the cosmos. I call it, two lies and a truth. Luckily, the last and truest has felt the best to me. Also, I've discovered that finding quaint coffee shops to meet people and read at is hard. Not every city has a coffee culture and so far the only places I have been able to find have been starbuck's. Oh well.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Day two

So last night I got to play under the stars, then found a hospital parking lot where I could call home for the night. I laid my yoga mat across my back seat, put on my snuggie and prayed I would wake up again. I didn't have as much trouble falling asleep as I thought and I awoke to a gorgeous sunrise around 5:30 am. Made a nutritious breakfast of crackers, peanut butter and jelly, then played my guitar some more and did some reading. My next stop was a cute little town called Park Ridge. I parked my car, and just started walking. Hung out at a park until I got weird looks from kids, then I just walked around. Trader Joe's, antique shops, starbucks, and the library were among my stops. I've been making some interesting discoveries along the way, I'll delve into those a bit more at a later date. I'm stopped at a motel 8 because I needed a bed and a shower. Talk more tomorrow

Monday, June 13, 2011

Day 1

Departed this afternoon. Not knowing where you are going is both terrifying and invigorating. After driving about 45 minutes I decided to send my GPS off in search of coffee. I made my first selection, George's Koffee Kup because I enjoyed their whimsical use of K's. It led me to a tiny farm town called Kouts, and a promising looking diner. The promises were broken, however, once I spotted the unlit "open" sign. Disappointed I set my GPS for a near Starbucks in Rensselaer. Not as much character as I was hoping for, but least I knew they would be open. A surprise and a blessing came when one of the baristas and I struck up a conversation and I discovered that he was also a restless souled believer like myself, with a passion for ministry and a mutual friend from my college town. He gave me some good advice, kind words, and encouragement. My plan for tonight is to find a quiet country road where I can see the stars, lay my blanket across my hood, and play guitar to the night sky until I feel tired enough to sleep. Goodnight friends, See you all tomorrow.


So here it is; the trip I have been dreaming of since Christmas break. Although it is on a much smaller scale than originally intended, the purpose remains the same. I am setting out to find the answers to the questions my heart has been asking about God, to find myself, and to face my fears. I fear driving to places I have never been; I'm driving to several. I fear being alone; I will be far away from anyone familiar. I fear talking to strangers; I will try to engage nearly everyone I come across. I fear change; I will be changed.What this means for the blog is that for the next five days this will be where I will chronicle my experience, what I think and feel. I warn you, these will not be organized or even coherent thoughts. They will be emotion driven and mostly consist of me re-discovering discoveries I made and forgot. One trip to walmart for some last minute essentials and off I go. Yay!!!

Sunday, June 12, 2011


Sometimes, you just have to reinvent yourself. I've been changing a lot lately, and I guess one day I looked in the mirror and decided my outside didn't match the way I felt on the inside. So I gave myself a makeover. I got a tattoo to remind myself to always live with and chase after passion. I chopped all my hair off to match my new- found feelings of independence. I dyed it dark because I felt like it. Tomorrow I'm taking a week long road trip to find myself, and to find God. My budget is about $120, which means lots of sleeping in my car and cheap food but I am eager for some alone time to think and read.
I have a stack of 4 or 5 books that I hope to finish by the end of the trip, and about a million questions. I'll be happy if even one of them is answered at the end.
I have an atlas, a suitcase, a pillow, and my guitar but the one thing I don't have is a plan. I'm just going to go and see where it takes me. Adventure, friends!!! What would life be without it?

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Home is where the heart is

Guess what, friends!! I got my first tattoo! I designed this tattoo sophomore year when I studied the heart in school.I found a fascination and awe of the cardiovascular system. I love that a small, fist shaped hunk of muscle is responsible for circulating blood by contracting 70-100 times a minute for your entire life! And I love that an electrocardiogram (or EKG) can give a visual representation of the electric impulses generated by each section of the heart. That way, just by looking at the shape and spacing of the peaks and waves, you can tell what is going wrong or right in the heart. The lines are clean and graphic, but also anatomically correct. You can see the P wave, QRS complex, and a small T wave. I'm really pleased with how it turned out. What is means to me personally, is to always chase after what you are passionate about, what your heart beats for.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Appearances can be deceiving

Today I thought about carrying around a flask or a bottle in a paper bag, but fill them with fresca (or any other beverage of my choice). People would see, assume, likely judge, but then I would have a scapegoat. When I say ridiculous/bizarre things, act like a goof, do something stupid or put my foot in my mouth, they'll all just cluck their tongues and go, "oh it's understandable... she's drunk". I could get away with absolutely anything!.... until the intervention, of course.

Friday, June 3, 2011

I hate being happy.

Ok so perhaps that was a slight exaggeration... I don't hate being happy. But now that I find myself in a good place and on the way to contentment, I find myself thinking back fondly and almost longing for days when my life was in tatters and I was unhappy and discontent. Is it because I am scared of stagnancy and *gasp* boredom? I honestly couldn't tell you. My psyche is a hot mess and I would much rather just watch TV than suss out whatever the heck is going on there.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011


I left you in a puddle on the floor
And as the last ripple erupted, wavered, and then died,
I was sure I had seen the last of you
My dear
My darling
My venomous love.
My robe in tatters, pieces scattered but now I am a Queen
This desert is my palace, my dry, sacred haven
Far from you, free from you
Aeons later, in my wanderings, I see you in the distance
Smoking against the cloudless sky, steam rising
But what's this?
My dear
My darling
My venomous love.
You are an oasis, and I've never been so glad to see you.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Helpless Helper

It's my job to help people; to heal people, the sick people. It's what I signed up for, what I'm designed be strong for the weak and fight for the defenseless. Now in this moment, when all I want is to fulfill what I am and who I am, I find my hands tied. A month ago I was starting IVs and fighting tirelessly for other people's grandparents because I was the one wearing the scrubs. I was the one with the answers and the control. Now I'm wearing a gray sweater that I can't stop pulling at and blue jeans that don't keep me warm in the chilly hospital room. And this time it's my grandma laying there in the blue gown and white sheets... and I can't do anything about it. A powerless bystander, a helpless helper. Deathcab's "what sarah said" plays in a loop as I try to think of something to say to my family. How did those machines that I am so familiar with become so ominous? How come the words that used to come so easily to strangers now fail me with my loved ones? I want to shake the nurses and scream, "I'm one of you!!! Let me see the charts!!" But I know that won't do any good, save getting me kicked out. I look at her, so still and quiet but for some reason, looking younger and more lovely than I have ever seen before and I can think of a million things to say to her: "You can't leave... we need you to hold this entire family together. You're the linchpin, you're the cornerstone that brings us together. We can't make it without you and I can't picture life without you. Your fried chicken, your sassy remarks, your quiet strength and your spunk... can't leave us." But in the jumble of awkwardness and uncomfortable silences, it comes out as, "How are you feeling, Grandma?"

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Secret Book

I should really have more secret treasures. I went antique shopping with a friend and spotted an old leather bound book that caught my eye. I flipped the pages, relishing the rich scent of time and paper ( I love the smell of old books) and couldn't resist taking it home. I am not one for destroying literature, but I saw in a movie once someone who cut the pages out of a book to hide secret treasures in, and decided I wanted to do the same. So I spent the better part of an hour creating a cove for all my secret treasures, when I realized... I have none. I have no valuables, no racy love notes, no special trinkets to hide in my book. Sure, I have a handful of shameful secrets I hide from prying eyes, but I hide them in my heart, in a different book I have spent years carving out. And though I keep them safely tucked away, I'm sure they will be brought to light just like whatever I put in my book will likely be rousted from its hiding place. Everything done in secret will be brought to light someday, so they say. Perhaps secrets are overrated....

Airing of the Grievances

Do you think that perhaps, this time, you ask too much? Is this your ploy, to take and take what you've given me until I have nothing left but yourself to sustain me? If you wanted me to have (and to rely on) nothing but you, then why did you so freely let these gifts fall into my hands? I asked you if I could have them. I asked if they would be good for me, good for us. You were silent. Now, you speak but I can no longer recognize your voice. Whether it is because I closed up my ears for too long or because you stopped speaking, I can't tell which.

Monday, May 23, 2011


You ever just feel like something is off, like a unidentifiable funk is hanging over your head? I just can't get into the summer groove, boys and girls. I can't do it. I just can't enjoy the sun while studying for the NCLEX is hanging over my head like a storm cloud. On a lighter note, my lovely pilot boy returned to the states yesterday, then jetted off to WI for the summer. Being apart will be hard, (sorry,... difficult) but I also think it will have some good aspects to it. I'm so disorganized... I probably shouldn't be blogging when I am this scatterbrained. I just finished reading The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls, fantastic read. She tells about her life in an eccentric, impoverished family and her adventures with her alcoholic but lovable father and impulsive (and probably bipolar) mother. I couldn't put it down. Go read it today. I'm gonna go eat some left over pizza.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Not ready

I scheduled my licensure exam for July 30. That means, God willing, that come August I will officially be a nurse and ready to get a grown-up job. I will desperately miss being a barista, though I may keep it as a part time job just so I can keep up my latte art skills. I feel like a child thrust into an adult body and social role, I don't feel my age. But then again, I never really have. I made a conscious decision to grow up a while ago, and that has drastically affected my behavior. I am behaving more maturely and responsibly, but I still feel 17. Maybe I always will. And is that really so wrong?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

straw fedora and a pink chemise

Startling realization from an unexpected source. I was bored out of my skull this afternoon, so I sat down to take a college exit survey emailed to me last week. It asked me my opinion on my college experience, then my opinions on global issues and then my opinions about what is important in life. I was surprised to find that my responses revealed parts of my heart I only suspected were present. I discovered that the only thing that really gets my heart beating faster (regarding my future) is service, not pursuit of monetary gain. I think... I think I may want to be a missionary nurse. The thought of actively helping the helpless makes me feel alive in a way I haven't in a long time. It won't be a profitable life choice (in fact, I may have to work a year just to afford a missionary lifestyle) but I honestly can't picture myself happy just living for myself. Goodness. This is big news, the kind of news that changes just about everything.

Monday, May 16, 2011

identity crisis

So I've been thinking about where to take my blog, because I wanted to make it more useful to people, and something they can relate to like a fashion blog or a fitness blog. But I love fashion, fitness, poetry, creative writing, and random thought blogs... so there's no way I could fit all those into one. I also don't know which people would most like to see. So I guess I will just keep doing what I'm doing, which is post whatever the heck I feel like. I'll call it a friendship blog, and it'll just be me being me, hoping that someone finds in me a kindred spirit. Or whatever. :)

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Graduation caps are silly looking

Who started the tradition of wearing tassled squares atop your head to signify completion of a college education? They look silly and are darn hard to keep on if you were born with an abnormally small head like me. Well, an abnormally small everything, really. Yes friends, I graduated today. I joined a sea of black robes and multi-colored tassles and I even did a stereotypical jumping-while-throwing-cap photo shoot. I am (well, technically I still have to pass my exam...) for all intensive purposes, a nurse. A NURSE! I could go on and on about the joys and terrors of being a nurse, ranging from holding a new baby to collecting stool samples, but rather than doing that I will simply say that this profession is not what I chose. It is who I am. It's been a long, hard road but I have arrived at my destination, which ironically enough is the first step leading to another long hard road. And though my training has me adequately prepared, I know (and fear) that I still have so so so much to learn. I think I need to watch Dead Poet's Society to get me pumped up for the journey. CARPE DIEM!!!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

My entire life fits into three black trash bags.

Ok, so it's not literally three trash bags, but I am referring to the feeling you get when you pack up and move and you have an actual visual representation of everything you possess in the world. To me it looks like a large pile of lumpy trash bags, a few mirrors, a futon, a desk, and a large framed floor puzzle of "where the wild things are". Today is moving day, my friends... a day many dread, and also a day where you realize who your true friends are. They say that your true friends are the ones who show up on moving day, so we'll see. (Little do they know that this is a test, and no-shows get cut out of my life forever. See ya, suckers!!) Kidding about that, by the by. I spent last night at my new place, it was strange to wake up and feel a panic of not remembering where I am. But I am also excited for this adventure. I have equal parts of homebodiness and rolling stone in me, which is convenient because a part of me is placated by whichever turn my life takes. So here goes rolling stone, I am eager for the beginning of a new era while my homebody laments the passing of the last one. Do tell me, are you a homebody or a rolling stone?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Small comforts

So today I said my goodbyes and handed my darling boy over to Africa, begging it to take good care of him. Despondent, I found solace in my new batch of records that I enjoyed with a cup of green tea, cross-legged on my living room floor. Bon Iver's album, For Emma, Forever Ago is a life-changing piece when listened to on CD and absolutely transcendental when listened to on vinyl. The husky, dusky vocals and delicate, intoxicating instrumental intricacies make me feel as if I am walking barefoot through a moss-covered forest. For lighter, cheerier tunes, I just purchased the Ra Ra Riot album, Rhumb Line. All around great listen, interesting lyrics and the music is catchy but not dumbed down. Reminds me of a Tokyo Police Club/Vampire Weekend hybrid (both of which are on my list of albums to get on vinyl). Hopefully I will have a little extra money for new music, I think the next two artists I want to invest in are Lissie and Laura Gibson. Very uncharacteristic for me since I trend towards male vocalists but I am in love with their croaking, sing-me-to-sleep song styles. Check them out if you have the time.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Happy for you, but not happy

My darling pilot boy is leaving today for Rwanda, and will be gone the whole summer... it is a complicated emotion. I am ecstatic for him, and the amazing opportunity he gets to experience another culture and reach out to a hurting people... but at the same time I want him here with me. Perhaps this is how my mother felt when my father was called away with the Air Force time and time again. I'm happy for you, and so so very proud... but not happy.

Monday, May 9, 2011

I've missed you

I apologize for my absence, darlings, it's been a whirl of activity the past few weeks. I'll just share one thought I had the other day, and I beg your pardon if it comes off as a rant; it's meant merely as a critically thinking observation.
So I was thinking about the standards of beauty. I made a list in my head: Perfectly shaved legs/armpits, breath that smells of peppermint, red lips, smokey eyes, painted finger/toenails, tanned skin, perfectly groomed eyebrows, multi-colored, highlighted hair. What do these things have in common? Well, all of them are in some way part of the standard of beauty. Oh, and none of them occur naturally, or at least not in the way we are accustomed to them. They are a parody, a cartoon version of natural beauty. It's like a banana versus banana flavored taffy. Now please don't misunderstand me... I'm not a bra-burning feminist and I currently have shaved legs and painted nails myself... but I think these next few weeks I am going to try embracing my natural beauty and I wish more women (and men, please) would do the same. Let us love ourselves! Heck, I may even leave the house without make-up. Yikes!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

do it like a dude

My friends constantly make fun of me for (their words, not mine) "dressing like a lesbian". Baggy plaid shirts, baggy denim shirts, combat boots, ripped up jeans... I have found that the way I feel reflects how I choose to dress myself. For the longest time I chose to be single, to be on my own, independent. I didn't need anybody and nobody needed me. I was a lone-wolf kind of dude. So I dressed like a lone-wolf kind of dude. Now as I embark on selecting my new spring wardrobe I find myself drawn to skirts, dresses, floral tops... And I suspect it's because for the first time in a long time, I feel like a girl. He makes me feel like a girl.
*note: this is not an exact science. I still plan on wearing my plaid shirts. Heck, I paid for 'em and by golly... I'm gonna wear 'em.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Bucket list

I can hardly believe it. In just a few short weeks I will receive a certificate that authenticates me as a f'real diploma carrying adult. I have so many things I want to do during my first year of adulthood and now that I will have more free time and steady income, I can do them! Here are just a few things I really want to do with the next year of my life. Some are concrete, some are abstract, all are long-awaited:
- Take guitar lessons
- Take voice lessons
- buy a road bike
- Work my way through the long list of books I want to read
- Brush up on my Spanish
- Get a tattoo
- Take some time for self-discovery
- Beef up my record collection
- Practice my obscure hobbies, like clothes altering, soap carving, and etch-a-sketching
- Go backpacking
I think those are pretty realistic for a whole year, there's no reason I can't at least knock out most of those. I'm excited.

Monday, May 2, 2011


I have dirt and grit and mud on my face, caked in my eyes so I can no longer see the light. I wipe it away with equally muddy hands, wiping and wiping and never any cleaner for my troubles. I want so desperately to have my face cleaned, but I know before I can I must wash my hands. If only I could see to wash them.

I know this may make no sense to you, but I have no other way to describe what I am feeling.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

so much bittersweetness

The end of the school year is rapidly approaching. Today I went to two events that have such a ball of emotion wedged in my throat, I may need CPR. I am in love with my church and my church family, today was the senior luncheon where we got to celebrate graduating and leaving our home of the past four years. It was so strange to remember just four years ago as a freshman, hearing the announcement for the senior lunch and fantasizing about the day I would be able to attend. It is bittersweet, at best. Today was also the last staff gathering for the coffee shop where I work. We had a picnic in the park and sat around as the seniors one by one recounted their favorite memories. I am so glad I chose to stay and work there for the summer, I am no where near ready to give up this group of wonderful people I have grown to love so dearly. Life transitions are always awkward and, not to overuse the word, bittersweet. There is something beautiful about a life change; you are set free to be someone new and to reinvent yourself, but in most cases you leave behind a part of yourself that perhaps you loved. This coffee shop (though it is so much more than that) will always have a special place in my heart. I have laughed,cried, studied, played, danced, loved, and lived there for two years now. It had instilled in me a passion for coffee and community that I will take with me as I move on with my life. I am grateful, to say the least. This post is uninteresting, I know, for I believe that no one can truly understand the magic of my workplace unless you have been there. It is like an adopted family who are all dedicated to the same cause and work and play together with a selfless love for each other that spills out onto anyone who comes in contact with them. It is magic. I could go on but I am rambling already. If you would like, tell me a story about a place where you found a home away from home. I would love to hear it, and thank you for listening. :)

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Bittersweet...but mostly sweet

Today was my last day of undergraduate classes. I can hardly believe it, even as I type the words. I don't feel much different from my freshman self a short four years ago, but looking back I can see just how much I have changed. I don't really feel like going into all of the complex feelings I am experiencing as I face graduation, so instead I will make a short list of things I will miss and won't miss about college classes:
Will miss: waking up early and seeing the sun rise as I walk to class, laying out on the lawn and studying, people watching between classes, all-nighter cram sessions with friends, having something to dress outrageously for, not being held accountable for most of my actions, having summer break, having Thursday be a socially acceptable day to go to the dancey bars.
Won't miss: Waking up early to drag my butt to class, walking in the snow and rain, waiting on buses, sitting for hours in a classroom, obscene amounts of schoolwork, stress of homework and exams, not having time for friends, feeling like a child most of the time.
So all-in-all, I am ready for this transition. All I have to do is survive finals week. Eye of the tiger!!!!

Monday, April 25, 2011

I eat the head off first

Easter is wonderful for many reasons, one of those reasons being the chocolate bunnies. Being in bunny form makes the chocolate taste better, I swear it does (Not unlike cartoon-shape macaroni). I was planning on writing a blog about my moral opposition to dressing up for church (and if you want to know why, I'll explain but it is silly) but then I remembered 2 Tim 2:23. That particular verse states, "Have nothing to do with foolish, ignorant controversies, you know that they breed quarrels."
So rather than write the aforementioned rant, I will simply say, friends, rejoice in this day. Let's put aside our differences and brokenness and remember the events that transpired to give us the grace and freedom we enjoy so undeservedly. Happy Easter <3
P.S. I know this is a day late, I wrote it in church and never got access to a computer. Oopsy :)

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Home again, home again, jiggedy jig

Home. I am home for Easter and it is lovely. I find that there are certain things, and also certain smells and foods that simply remind me of home. No matter where I am, coming into contact with any one of these things brings instant comfort. When I was in Haiti and so far removed from anything familiar, the only time I felt ok was when I pet a Haitian cat that reminded me of my baby, Sassy. Here is a few things that are home to me:

- Fried Chicken
- Cats
- the smell of Folger's coffee
- Brown carpets
- Pianos
- The movie, "It's a Wonderful Life"
- Japanese food
- Fireplaces
- Monopoly
What is home to you?

Thursday, April 21, 2011


My life is a game of Jenga. My mistakes, my bad habits and my personality flaws are all pulling the pieces out from under me and I can feel it...
I watch my fingers as they reach for that fateful piece. That wrong piece. That vital.last.piece.
Inwardly I scream at myself not to touch it, but I know I will, I always do.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

tell me your heart doesn't race for a burning building

Do you ever get the impulse to jump in front of a car or throw yourself off of a tall building? And please don't misunderstand me, I am not morbid or suicidal, and I don't wallow in the macabre. I would often experience those impulses while going for a walk along highways or riding my bike across a bridge, and would be deeply disturbed by them. "Am I suicidal? Do I want to die?" But then I realized I did not desire death, I simply wanted to experience feeling truly alive. So much of my life is spent in a numb, almost dream-like state that the surge of adrenaline accompanying such a catastrophe was exactly what I needed. Also, I just want to know what it's like to be struck by a car. Call me curious. Do you feel that way, desperate for something, anything to make you feel....really feel alive?
On a lighter note, I am treating myself to a new pair of shoes. I have it narrowed down to two. Help me pick?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

I can't think of a good title.

Once, I decided that I would try to start biting my nails. Why? Because I liked the idea of being "the girl who bites her nails." Like, my friends would look at me and say, "Oh that Stephanie just can't stop biting her nails..." or my boyfriend would look at the gnawed remnants of my fingernails and just smile and shake his head... and I liked that idea. So I tried to start a habit of chewing my fingernails, but unfortunately it just didn't take. My fingernails are incredibly strong and by the time I remembered I was supposed to chew them, they were already too long and strong for my poor teeth to demolish. Not that I don't have other nervous habits; I'm a compulsive lip-chewer, jewelry-player-wither, and hummer...but I don't like the idea of those as much. Oh well. Have you ever decided to adopt something as part of your identity, just for kicks? Did it take?

Monday, April 18, 2011


I look at my life now, I don't recognize it. It is as if I went to bed an ugly stepsister, wretched and forsaken, and awoke a princess, filled with a world of beauty and promise. I praise the Lord every day for his accomplishment in turning my life into something I can be proud of when I reveal my heart to my close friends. So completely transformed am I, I feel like I should change my name... Isn't that what people did in the Bible times when they underwent a transformation? Call me Amalya, which translated from Hebrew means "Work of God". I look forward to what He has in store for me next.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Feeding sharks

I was listening to a band called "Sleeping at last" (if you haven't heard of them, I highly recommend looking them up) and a lyric stuck out to me especially. The lyric was, "walking on the ocean floor, feeding sharks out of our hands" and it got me thinking about the possible metaphor behind that line. Feeding sharks out of your hand is a dangerous activity that encourages familiarity with an animal that has a reputation for being destructive, dangerous, and unpredictable. It reminds me of some instances in my own life where I feed my sharks, or destructive life patterns. I have weaknesses, like anyone, that more often than not I embrace rather than attempt to conquer. I adopt these flaws as a part of me, encouraging them and feeding them. There are "sharks" everywhere in the form of alcohol/drug abuse, anger, pornography, and self-deprecation, among many more. Why do we feed them? They are dangerous and will try to kill us given the chance...and they are always hungry. What are your thoughts? What are some of your "sharks"?

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Formality and salad forks

Please... let's not stand on formality.
 I dislike politesse for politesse's sake. I think the strict rules of high society is just another way to divide and classify people who are, at their core, essentially the same. Many a wonderful and memorable conversation has been squelched to maintain a sense of formality, and our pomp and frill only serves to keep others at an arms length. Don't look at the tags on my clothes, don't look at the brand of my shoes. Look me in my eyes and let us share a pot of tea and find something we have in common, which I am guessing is more than either of us would have ever guessed. Also, what is up with salad forks? Who cares which fork you use for dinner and which you use for salad? Shoot, I'll just have soup.

This bathroom is bigger than my bedroom!!!

This weekend I am staying at a friend's lake house with my community group. I was confused at first, mainly because I didn't understand the concept of a lake house. A house that's just for summer time? But why? Nevertheless, my perplexion (is that a word?) didn't stop me from enjoying this magnificent establishment. Can I just describe my morning here?

7:30 am- awoke and went downstairs to the kitchen to make coffee and nom on homemade banana bread.

8:30-9:30 yoga by the bay window overlooking the lake. The sunrise was just beautiful.

9:30-10:30 Sat on the dock by the lake with a blanket, cup of coffee, and my journal and had the most wonderful alone time with God. Listened to Bon Iver and watched the waves twist and break in the wind. I am truly blessed today, I pray for many more mornings like these.

10:30-12pm Everyone else woke up and we made cinnamon rolls and laughed and talked. What a perfect Saturday!

Tell me about your idea of the perfect Saturday, I'd love to hear it.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Dance Dance Revolution

Dancing is my favorite because it's like singing with the body! I also love to sing (which one might argue is like dancing with the voice). I went out to the dancey bars tonight with the people I work with, we hit the dance floor and we hit it hard. It was packed to the walls but people made room for us, but mostly because they were afraid they would get hit with wildly flailing punches and kicks. I was definitely the one dancing like I was intoxicated, but I was also the only one not drinking. I dig people who don't worry about what they look like while dancing, JUST MOVE YA BODY! How do you dance, you may ask? Allow me to break it down into two easy steps:

1. Put your hands in the air.

2. Wave them like you just don't care.

Got it? Good. I'll see you on the dance floor in five.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

I'm a dork, but so are you. Perhaps not a dork for big glasses and reading old books like me, but if you are like most people then you are a dork for something. You can be a dork for fashion, a dork for animals.... the only criteria is you have to love that thing and know more about it than the average person would. Tell me, what are you a dork for?

Also, I was introduced to a new band today. They are called Freelance Whales. You should listen to them...

Also also, I am trying to decide whether to grow my hair long again or cut it shorter.

Transformers, Robots in Disguise

I love my transformers optimus prime T shirt, I will probably still wear it when I am 90. I've been thinking a lot lately about transformation. Can one thing, one person, ever truly be transformed? If you had asked me 6 months ago, I would say no... but new habits can be learned to give the appearance of a transformation. But now, looking at myself, I see that true transformation is possible. For the past year I have been a disaster. Self destructive life patterns and poor choices were strewn about my feet, stumbling me again and again. And then I gave up. I gave up trying to fix myself and told my Savior that if he could do anything with the mangled remains of my life, have a crack at it. Got your work cut out for ya, ol' buddy, ol' pal. But he took the broken shards of glass and created a stained glass window for His glory to shine through. Yesterday I was faced with a familiar scenario but I responded to it in a way so contrary to my nature that I know... I KNOW that some major transformation has happened while I wasn't even looking. Do you think people can change?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Big Girl Pants

Today I made perhaps the most important decision of the year: I decided that today is the day that I will grow up. I know, I know, I am in my 20s and should have done that a long time ago but I honestly believe that growing up is a conscious decision, not something that happens spontaneously as you age. I am so tired of shirking responsibilities, planning poorly, procrastinating, not taking initiative and just generally behaving like a child. I'm tired of apologizing and constantly being overwhelmed. Today is the first day of my adult life, and I gotta say... it feels damn good.
Now this doesn't mean I will give up the child-like parts of myself that I love. I will still climb trees, giggle at the word "duty", dip my cookies in milk, and gawk at sunsets like I've never seen one before. But when it comes to my professional life, I will grab life by the horns and (pardon the expression) make it my bitch.
Boys and girls, it's a new day.

Monday, April 11, 2011


I love clothes. I love clothes, accessories, and other items worn ornamentally on the body. Not just on me, on other people as well...but not because I am frivolous and superficial. Allow me to explain. Have you heard the saying, "wear your heart on your sleeve"? That saying means a lot to me, but not how it was intended. I think that fashion choices and accessory selection is just another way to reveal small pieces of your heart, like your preferences, your values, your desires. Everyone is reaching out to others with a small, subtle message in what they adorn their body with. If you are interested in people like I am, these messages are fascinating. Just one example, the environmental enthusiast wearing non-synthetic fabric and recyclable "green" jewelry, telling anyone paying close attention about her passion for a healthy planet. All around you, strangers are telling you their favorite color, their favorite sports team, their level of self-esteem, their school, what they watch, where they come from.... whether or not anyone cares to listen is another matter entirely. So I guess the true message of this isn't that I love clothes.... it's that I love people.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Contextual Humanity pt. 2

I'm still thinking about context today... and another aspect struck me. Physical actions, especially intimate ones, have their own context as well. That context completely changes the meaning of it (though whether it changes the nature of the act is something many will argue). For example, sex can be so very special on a wedding night or between two people that love each other very much, and so very meaningless when exchanged by strangers. Tonight a friend extended a gesture towards me that in any other context would be touching, but insignificant.... but in this particular context....
It meant the world to me.

Can you relate?

Thursday, April 7, 2011

contextual humanity

I think people are a lot easier to understand than they seem. People who follow alternative lifestyles (ie. manner of dress, speech, food choices, medical treatment, etc) may seem "weird" or "abnormal", but you just have to look at them in their own context. Look at someone in their own habitat and they aren't so hard to understand after all. It's like looking at a fish in a tank that should be in the ocean. It looks bizarre, it has both eyes on one side of its body and is a mottled brown color that sticks out like a sore thumb. But if you traced it back to its origin, you would see that lying on the floor of its habitat it blends in perfectly, completely flat in the murky mud to help it survive. Same with people, a person may look strange to you, but follow them to their habitat and you will see, their surroundings have shaped them. You simply have to understand the context of their lives to understand them. BOOM blowin' ya mind!!!!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

How wonderful it must be to have a great, bushy tail

I am not cut out for adulthood. How do I know, you ask? Because during an important group meeting today I got lost in thought, staring out the window. Thinking about how wonderful it would be to be a squirrel. To climb trees all day, all the while waving and gesticulating emphatically with my fantastic tail. The only things on my To Do list would be:

  • gather nuts

  • not get run over

  • have sex

So tomorrow at 11:11, I know Exactly what I am going to wish for. So if you see a squirrel tomorrow waving its tail extra emphatically... It's me.

NOT a fashion blog... but let's talk shoes

Ok so this is most definitely not a fashion blog, but I wanted to talk about a few trends I have noticed and love.
1. Headgear lust- bowler hats. I love them. I bought one but my head is too small to really pull it off so I will keep searching for one that fits a little better
2. shown to above right, Mary Jane wedges. Where has this shoe been all my life?? It can be dressed up or down, worn with jeans, leggings or dresses. And also wicked comfortable.
3. Hair- A recent trend I've noticed is long dark hair with blonde ends, like a short punk blonde style that grew out forever, as seen above left. I really like the look, but unfortunately ever since I chopped my locks, this one won't be an option for me for quite a while yet.

My new favorite fashion accessories for the upcoming season are: sheer white polka dotted tights, just got a pair at target and they are simply amazing. Wear them under shorts or with a minidress. Combat boots, this seasons badass alternative to the masculine gladiator sandles. Mismatched earrings, my favorite pair is a skeleton key on one ear and a lock on the other. Two-fingered rings, I got the perfect one a few months ago that I wear on my ring/middle fingers and it has the word LOVE encrusted with cubic zirconia. It's like a girly version of brass knuckles. What are some of your favorite fashion items for this spring?

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

More than a hug, less than a kiss

Today my hand fell asleep.
I laced the numb, dead fingers through those on my other, still living, hand
and for that moment, I felt what you would feel if you held my small, often cold hand
while going for a walk
snuggling on the couch
perhaps in a movie theater
in the car... no wait!! I need it to maintain 10 and 2 positioning....
But nevertheless, I decided it felt nice.
I would highly recommend it.

Mark Twain had it right

Was it Mark Twain that said, "I never let school interfere with my education"? Or did I just make that up... Well, if dear Mark did say that, he sure had it right. I love to learn, I think of myself as a life-long learner... but I hate school. Honestly, I feel like school is one of the biggest obstacles standing in the way of me and real learning. Sure, I am collecting a mass of facts and knowledge and receiving validation in the form of grades, but real learning is not happening as my butt remains glued to the desk chair.
Also desks and adulthood don't go together, in my opinion; perhaps that's why I still feel like a child most of the time.
To learn, I need to read books written by thinkers and dreamers, I need to climb mountains and I need to interact with people from other cultures. I need to be given plenty of room to get lost, and to fail. I can't learn inside of a box. I can be trained, but I can't learn. I know that what my schoolbooks and professors have to teach me may help me in my chosen profession, but work is such a small part of life. (to me, anyway... I know a multitude of people who would disagree)
This summer I am planning a two week roadtrip to do some searching for the Heart of God and hopefully stumble upon my own in the process. I anticipate learning more in those two weeks than all four years of college.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Forget ignorance, apathy is bliss

I miss the days when I didn't care. My sense of well-being was unflappable and my desire for the great beyond went untapped. But in these days of rapid change and growth, I find myself stirred to action; to passion, if you will.
Wanting something, really wanting something, is scary. When you really want something, the desire for that thing feels almost like possessing it. And when you are denied that thing, it feels very much like losing it.
I find myself wanting something very badly.
Two things.
But those two things are directly oppositional.
Either way I win, and either way I lose. But I trust the Lord and I trust His plan for my life. I know he has my best in mind, and He has big plans for me in the scope of His kingdom. I trust that, I really do.
I just wish He would let me in on the plan because not knowing is. just. awful.

Sunday, April 3, 2011


Last night at the hospital around 2AM I found a bit of free time, a lull in the action. I decided to crouch behind a computer, pretend to be doing work, and do a bit of blogging about what I was thinking and feeling about my experience of the day. In the next 20 minutes or so, I produced an insightful, moving monologue describing the wide range of emotions and thoughts that I had experienced in the last eleven hours. But as I was composing the conclusion, I was called away for a brief moment. But not brief enough, because by the time I returned my tab had been closed and my work was gone. Balls. So you will never know what words were intended to be in place of these, and I am not inclined to retype them because any emotions I was experiencing are now gone and I don't believe I could reproduce them with the same genuine spirit in which they were created. So there you have it. This is a non-blog. A blog in a blog's absence, if you will. But I felt the urge to write, and felt it better to write something about nothing than nothing at all. On another note, my sister came to visit today and seeing and speaking with her was like a drink of cold lemonade on a hot day.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

random thought

Someone asked me today if I would rather be told the honest, possibly hurtful, truth or an insincere lie designed to make me feel better. For example, a new haircut or a poem I wrote. My knee-jerk reply was, "I would rather someone be honest with me. " But after I thought it over, I thought that it doesn't really matter all that much if my haircut is truly awful, the poem I wrote is terrible, or the picture I painted looks like it was done by a drunk monkey. In reality, (my reality, more specifically) all that really matters is why I did what I did and how that makes me feel about myself. I wrote a poem to express feelings, I painted a picture as an outlet for creativity, and I cut my hair because I needed a change. Therefore, it doesn't matter if it's terrible. But if you verbally invalidate what I have done, you then invalidate why I did it as well. I will no longer feel adequately expressed or creative, and I will see myself as having changed for the worse. I would rather have the lie, because it doesn't matter if what I have done is sub par. What matters is how I feel about myself. So unless I am looking to improve through constructive criticism, lie to me so I can walk tall with my head held high, terrible hair cut and all.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Wolf in sheep's clothing, or in this case....a sports bra

Today I got to thinking about idols. The Bible often speaks about idols and idolatry, but refers specifically to actual manifestations of pagan gods. Nowadays the idols we worship take on much more deceptive and sophisticated forms: Money, power, fame, status, greatness, sports etc. But really, in my opinion an idol is anything that tends to take precedence over God in daily life. That is, it occupies our thoughts more often, influences our choices, or is generally what we form our life around. I have discovered an unexpected idol in my life, and that is physical exercise. A seemingly harmless and beneficial habit to adopt, I began getting serious about fitness around sophomore year of college and in the past 4 months or so, have really made it a large part of my life. Most of my free time when I'm at home goes to exercise. It takes up the place of my night time devotionals or my mid-afternoon quiet times. I think I was so eager to take up this new idol because unlike my spiritual health, my physical health was more tangible and real. It made me feel and look good. Nobody commented on how Christ-like my actions were becoming, but people did comment on how fit I was looking. It's also just easier. Growing in Christ often leads me to become convicted, broken, and contrite. It's hard, and often painful. But it is also eternal, and this body that I spend so many hours to perfect will one day return to the earth from whence it came. From dust to dust. So now that I have regained perspective, I think my priorities need to go towards a goal that will outlast this body and this life.

Monday, March 28, 2011


Sometimes, people startle me when I am in deep thought and I blurt out personal and intimate details about myself. Like today, I was working in the kitchen and a friend came in and initiated a conversation while I was thinking. I answered his question about whether or not the dishes on the washer tray were clean, and then said, "I think it's funny that I am never offended by hurtful comments unless someone tells me what I have been telling myself all along, like I'm fat or no one will ever love me." Wow. Of course, he had nothing to say in response and I promptly changed the subject. Does anyone else do that? I love when I find someone who has the same bizarre traits as me. This week I meet someone who organizes M&Ms by color/number before eating them, and dresses in fancy clothes when they feel unhappy. I thought I was the only one. I also found out my mom plans out her food by what she wants to taste last, like I do. I'm glad I'm not the only one.

Sunday, March 27, 2011


Today the church service was about Jonah. If you aren't familiar with the story, it is about a prophet who receives a calling to Ninevah and promptly goes in the opposite direction. His journey to run from God leads him to a boat, then the sea, then a fish, then to the shore of the place he was meant to be in the first place. I used to be Jonah, having my faith tested and having to choose whether or not to answer my calling. I find my faith being tested once again, but in a different way. Now, I am ready to follow the calling. My shoelaces are tied, my feet are itching to go where the Lord leads me, and my hands hold loosely to the things that tie me to my current location. There is just one thing, one vital thing, missing from the equation, and that is the calling. I have no direction, no leading, my spiritual compass just spins and spins and clouds obscure the northern star. I am lost. I feel like I have a car packed for a long roadtrip, but on my GPS appears just one word: GO. And I am so petrified of taking a step in the wrong direction that I am tempted to take no step at all. Perhaps God is testing my faith by keeping my calling from me, and I simply have to act blindly, trusting that he will guide my steps. Inaction would make me like the servant who buried his master's money out of fear. I need to act wisely, be a good steward of the life I have been given by using what I know of the God I serve to plan my future. Hold my life, my choices, up to the light of His word and pray that His glory shines through. I want what He wants. I just wish that He would let me in on the plan.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


Today someone needed me to be strong for them.
I wish that they had needed me on any other day;
One when I wasn't feeling so
incompetent.... but I feel that way today.
I had to dig deep to find what they needed from me,
like searching for a gold ring you dropped in a lake.
But I found it, bright and shimmering, in a way I never thought possible.
And just in the nick of time, too.

Sunday, January 9, 2011


The one thing left to do is walk.
The only thing I feel now is my feet on the pavement.
I'll shake off the dust of this old town
and then the next
and then the next
and then the next.
I'll walk until until this pavement turns to grass.
Until the grass turns to sand.
Until the sand turns to water.
Until the water turns to nothing.
I'll bury my toes where angels tread,
and maybe then I'll be free of you.