Storms

It rained on my way home from work today. It was a cold, nasty rain, the light kind that dances around and eludes your umbrella, getting you wet no matter how hard you try to avoid it. And of course, ruining what was a good hair day.

Yesterday in Sunday School I taught about weathering storms. Life is so crummy sometimes. Many of my loved ones are going through some pretty rough (and weird) situations, and it’s a reminder to me that you’ve got to prepare for the storm in advance. Once it hits, sometimes it’s tough to tell right from left, up from down. During the storm, sometimes all you can do is hunker down and try to survive. The preparation is what helps you get through it.

So here’s some of the verses on storms that we looked at. They’re good to look at now, when things are going great. When the sun is shining. Stick them in your back pocket, because you never know when you might need it.

John 16:32-33
“But a time is coming, and has come, when you will be scattered, each to his own home. You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me. I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Romans 5:3-5
“Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.”

James 1:2-4
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”

Romans 8:18
“I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.”

Romans 8:38-39
“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Genesis 15:1
“Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.”

Also, for those of you who may not be aware, here are some great websites for studying your Bible. I use them a lot when preparing my lessons:
www.biblegateway.com
www.sermoncentral.com
www.crosswalk.com

Insomnia Insights

I cuddled up under my electric blanket this afternoon and took a 3-hour nap–the best possible way to spend a cold Sunday afternoon. Then, tonight I had two Diet Cokes during my long (and enjoyable!) dinner with my good friend Melissa. So now it’s 11:30 and I should be asleep, but instead I’m wide awake, knowing that it could be a long time before the sleep that I so badly want finally comes.

Which explains the multiple posts. What else am I supposed to do with this extra time–study?
————
So I was reading my TIME Magazine today, and there’s a special on “The Science of Romance.” Now, I’m no science buff, but this was a topic I couldn’t resist. The article said that smell is one of the best ways to find a mate. That subconsciously, we can tell from a man’s scent if he would make a good partner and father to future children.

Only one problem. I’m allergic to everything. My nose is always stuffy. So where does that leave me?
————
I saw 27 Dresses yesterday with my sister. It’s really cute. I highly recommend it if you like chick flicks. Except, Katherine Heigl looks terrible as a brunette, and they had her wear terrible clothes. Not to mention those awful bridesmaid dresses. It brought back memories to my own bridesmaid mistake.

Right after college I was in my roommate Kim’s wedding. I was a size 0 and the smallest bridesmaid dress size they had was a 6, so ordered it without bothering to try it on. The dress came in right before the wedding, and by the time I finally got around to trying on the dress, it was too late to return it. That size 6 was so small that I couldn’t zip it up! Nobody had bothered to tell me that bridesmaid dresses run small! I had to run to a seamstress and they had to cut material off of the bottom of the dress and sew it into the waistline so that I could button it. Nothing could be done with the top, so my small size 0 frame was spilling out of the top of that dress. I couldn’t breathe throughout the entire ceremony or reception. If I had eaten anything, the top of my dress would have probably exploded and fake diamonds and buttons would have broken out the windows or put peoples’ eyes out. It wasn’t my best moment.
——————-
Still not sleepy. But now I’m hungry. I’m going to go grab a snack, grab my TIME and try to work on those ZZZs.

Boys shouldn’t line dance

I went dancing for my roommate’s birthday (Happy Birthday friend!) at a country & western place in town this weekend. I love to 2-step because it doesn’t require any rhythm, which is something that I have in short supply. I’m a terrible dancer. I’m okay with that. But I can 2-step with the best of them, because it requires something I’m good at… practice. And brains. And sophistication (okay, now I’m just full of bologna). You should stop me.

I can country dance, but I can’t line dance. That also requires rhythm. And, it’s really funny to watch strangers create super-sexy dance moves out of something as simple as a line dance. What’s even funnier is to watch guys try to create super-sexy dance moves to impress the ladies while line dancing. It’s not pretty. In fact, it’s ugly. Very ugly.

Boys just shouldn’t line dance. Trust me on this one. You look stupid. Really. I should know.

Too busy for resolutions

I had good intentions to write down my new year’s resolutions, but I haven’t gotten around to it just yet. I got into such a lazy mode while I was on vacation, that going back to work and the routine that goes with it was tough. Next week I go back to grad school, which means even less free time. So basically, I don’t have time to make any major life changes. Here’s what I have so far:

1. Get organized.
I did this a little. I just cleaned out my 2007 files to make way for 2008. Having a cute red patent leather storage box helps motivate me to be more organized. I have a thing for storage supplies, office supplies, school supplies… and in 2008, it’s all goign to work for me! (hopefully) I also organized a lot of my stuff at work–since I work in marketing, my office is dripping with brochures, newsletters, etc. from the past 10 years. It’s a bit overwhelming, so I’m trying to take control. Oh, and I want to keep my shoes in the shoe holder, and not on the floor of my closet.

2. Keep plugging away at school.
So far, I’ve taken three classes out of 12. That’s 25 percent (and all A’s so far!). If I take three classes this year (spring, summer, fall) I’ll be half-way done with my master’s degree this Christmas. Which means I’ll have a chance at finishing by age 30. I never thought I’d still be in school at 30, but then again, I never really thought I’d be 30. So I might as well give it a try!

3. Try not to overcommit my schedule.
This means not scheduling something every night of the week. Actually stopping and reading a book for fun, or watching tv. I can’t do everything. I have to remind myself of that. Constantly. It’s one of my weaknesses.

4. Have a plan for studying the Bible.
I’m currently doing the Beth Moore Jesus study. Before I finish, I need to pick something else. Not just stick with my favorite books of the Bible, but branch out to those books that take a lot more work. I’d also like to memorize 75 Bible verses. I’ve been hovering around 50 for the past couple of years, it’s time to up the ante a little more. I think I can do it.

5. Work out a little more.
I used to run three miles at a time, take weight-lifting classes (even salsa). Lately I’ve been too busy. I need to get back in fighting form. I’m not worried about weight, but I’d like to work on those muscles! Besides, I just got some cute new running shoes that need breaking in.

Okay, that’s enough resolving for now. It’s back to organizing those files while I watch another Law & Order SVU episode. I love that show.

2007 In Review

I tend to get sentimental about New Year’s. I’m the type that writes out her New Year’s resolutions, thinks long and hard about the year that has just past, and looks at a new year as an open book, a clean slate (an ice cream sundae without any toppings!).

Soon I’ll post my resolutions (along with a look back at my last few years’ resolutions to see how I did). I’m not quite ready for that yet (I’ve been too busy taking down Christmas decorations). So in the meantime, here’s a look back at my 2007.

Where did you begin 2007?
I went to a Stars game, and then over to a friend’s house for a party.

Were you in school (anytime this year)?
Yes, I took two grad school classes. School’s a lot tougher when you’re working full time! (and paying for it yourself!) However, I still have all A’s!

Did you have any encounters with the police?
I got a ticket from one of those red light cameras. I think it’s unconstitutional.

Where did you go on vacation?
I took a two-week trip to Europe (visited Florence, Venice, Rome, Nice, Monaco, Cannes, and Paris) and then a short weekend trip to Washington DC to visit some college girlfriends.

What did you purchase that was over $500?
I made the biggest purchase of my life… a house! I also bought a washer, dryer, oven/stove and refridgerator (gulp). You could probably include two semesters of private college tuition as well. What a year!

Did you know anybody who got married?
I went to 5 weddings: Hailey & Jason, Amy & Keith, Kristin & Phil, Emily & (I forgot his name?), Brad & Jenn… am I forgetting anybody else?

Did you move anywhere?
Yes… into my brand-new house!

What sporting events did you attend?
Tons of Rangers games (probably 20), a Cowboys game, several Stars games, a Mavs game, a Dallas Desperados game, and lot’s of volleyball and soccer games. Oh, and I played on a softball team.

Where do you live now?
Texas

Describe your birthday:
My closest friends and family took me out to dinner at my favorite restaurant… Blue Mesa. It was a really nice night.

What’s something you learned about yourself?
I learned a lot about what I want, what I’m capable of, and how to take care of a house (and yard!).

Any new additions to your family?
I got a new roommate, Michelle.

What was your best month?
The whole year was nice.

Made new friends?
Yes! We got several new girls in my Sunday School class that have fit right in.

Favorite Night out?
A few nights ago my family sat around the dinner table and told funny stories about my mom. It was a really cool memory. Our catch phrase… “Get over it!”

What do you want to change in 2008?
Not a whole lot, I kind of want to coast…

Overall, how would you rate this year?
9.999

What would you change about 2007?
I would have been nice to have had less homework. I felt like a lot of my free time was drained from writing papers. And I didn’t get to knit or scrapbook much–those things are relaxing to me!

Other than home, where did you spend most of your time?
Work. It was pretty demanding at certain times this year, but I still really love my job.

Have any life changes in 2007?
I became a homeowner! I’m so proud to be able to say that I bought (actually built) a house without a husband. It’s kind of liberating! I’m very thankful that my parents let me live at home and save extra money while it was being built–without them, it wouldn’t have been possible.

Change your hairstyle?
I’ve had the same hairstyle for 10 years… although this week I came “this close” to cutting bangs. But I came to my senses and realized it would make me look 12.

Have any car accidents?
Thankfully, no.

Buy a new car?
Sort of… I bought an old car that used to belong to my parents and sister. It was more reliable than my convertible, and now I won’t have to buy a new car while I’m paying for grad school.

Get a new job?
Nope

Do you have a New Year’s resolution?
I’ll fill you in on those soon… I’m still working on them.

Do anything embarrassing?
This morning I was taking down my Christmas lights from outside, and realized I needed some storage bins from Target. I ran over there, and hadn’t bothered to shower or put on make-up (or even brush my teeth). It was probably the ugliest I’ve ever been… people were turning and staring at me because I looked so bad. All I could do was laugh.

Buy anything new from eBay?
No, but I developed a new love for Amazon, and I bought all of my Christmas gifts online. Only one never arrived.

What was your favorite purchase?
Besides my house… I finally bought a new leather love seat to match my couch. It only took me 4 years to buy it. It only took me 24 hours to commit to building this house, but I think about furniture purchases for years. Go figure.

Did you get sick this year?
I was pretty healthy, until this week.

Start a new hobby?
Gardening. Some of my plants have even lived.

Are you happy to see 2007 go?
Sure… because I have high expectations for 2008!

Drink Starbucks in 2007?
Yes, but my true love is Bon Journo, a little coffee shop nearby.

What are you wishing for in 2008?
A year that’s drama-free!

Survey because I’m sick.

I’m feeling under the weather today, and have spent most of my afternoon in bed (I would have spent this morning in bed too, but I was scheduled to get my hair highlighted, and well, some things can’t wait, no matter HOW bad I might feel).

I’ve read 200 pages of my book, paid my bills, even addressed invitations for a shower I’m throwing in three weeks, and I’m still bored. So, I’m filling out another one of those silly surveys. We’ll see how it goes.

1. It’s 2AM on the weekend, and you are not home. You are more than likely:
I’m always home by 2 a.m. If I’m not, something must be terribly wrong. Call the police!

2. What’s the last thing you spent more than $100 on?
I spent $125 at Target yesterday on groceries and Christmas decorations they had on clearance. I got red placemats for $1.50 each (yea!) and about a dozen ornaments for about $1 each. I love post-Christmas bargains!

3. What do your bank checks look like?
I buy the cheapest versions my bank offers–I have tried the cute ones before, but I don’t really care about impressing my electric company, water company, etc. by cutesie checks.

4. Where did the shirt you are currently wearing come from?
I’m wearing my Cowtown Marathon t-shirt. I’m on their Board of Directors so I have a lot of free shirts. This version is last year’s brown shirt–it’s one of my favorites, very retro.

5. Name something that is on your Christmas wish list..
I haven’t started my list for next year. I mean, I still have 362 days to work on that.

6. What color is your toothbrush?
I would have to get up to check that, so I’m going to guess white. But I could be wrong.

7. Name something you collect?
I collect newspaper and magazine clippings that mention me or the hospital that I do public relations for. In my four years at work there I have filled about 10 large notebooks. Don’t worry, I keep those at the office, they’re not cluttering up my house.

8. Last restaurant you ate at?
I got Chick-fil-a with a friend a few days ago. And last night we ordered Papa John’s Pizza for a game night I hosted at my house.

9. Last person you bought a Birthday card for?
Must have been for my sister, whose birthday was in December. Happy Birthday Lindsay.

10. What is your worst bad habit?
Who me? Bad habits?

11. Name a magazine you subscribe to?
TIME and US Weekly. I have been wanting to subscribe to Rachel Ray’s magazine, but I can’t seem to fork over the $15 for the subscription.

12. Your favorite pizza toppings?
I like as many vegetables as possible. Even a little pineapple.

13. Who’s number were you looking up the last time you used a phone book?
Phone book? What is that? I haven’t used one of those in years. It’s called G-O-O-G-L-E.

14. I chose to skip this question… don’t you wish you knew what it was?

15. Name the last thing you cooked.
Yesterday I baked heart-shaped cupcakes and made a tomato basil dip for my game night party. I love to host parties of any kind, large or small.

16. Name something you wouldn’t want to buy used?
Shoes. Feet gross me out.

17. Which shoe do you put on first?
I’m too busy thinking about important things like world peace to remember which shoe I put on first. I’m just lucky if I pick two that match.

18. What is the last thing you remember losing?
Besides my sanity? I can’t find my digital camera–I’m hoping I left it at work.

19. What is the ugliest piece of furniture in your house?
I used to absolutely hate my bedroom furniture (it was a hand-me-down from a neighbor), until my sister and I refinished it and bought new hardware for it. Now it’s actually cute–somebody recently asked me if I bought it at Pottery Barn!

20. Last thing you bought and ended up returning?
I have a bunch of extra Christmas lights in the back of my car that I should return to Loews, but haven’t had time to yet.

21. What perfume/cologne do you wear?
Either Ralph Lauren’s Romance or an assortment of perfumes that I purchased in the South of France, right outside of Monaco (doesn’t that sound hip to say you bought something in the South of France? Did I mention I ran into the guy who plays “McSteamy” on Grey’s Anatomy while I was there?)

22. Your favorite board game?
Trivial Pursuit

24. Where did your vehicle come from?
Snowflake has been in my family for a loooong time. Like 9 years and 140,000 miles. I just got her this summer, after I sold my convertible. I won’t be getting another car until I finish grad school. Besides, Snowflake and I are getting along quite well, as long as she promises not to break down.

25. If a movie was made about your life what would the theme song be?
I’m a big fan of Ingrid Michaelson at the moment, so maybe one of her songs.

26. You’re sad, who can cheer you up easily?
My parents and sisters can always cheer me up. The last time I was really upset, my dad showed up at my house with new rocking chairs for my front porch. What a sweet guy.

27. What was the color of the bridesmaid dresses of the last wedding you went to?
I’m sure the bride remembers, but I sure don’t.

28. What house cleaning chore do you hate to do the most?
I don’t mind any of the inside chores. I don’t like to mow, and I really don’t like to edge the grass. But, I do it because otherwise I would probably get a big fine from the city, and it does make my house look better.

29. What is your favorite way to eat chicken?
I really love the teriyaki chicken burger from Red Robin. It’s very unhealthy and not my normal style, but for some reason I love LOVE it.

30. It is your birthday. You hope the cake is?
I like anything as long as the icing is whipped. Which reminds me, I’m hungry for those heart-shaped cupcakes I made yesterday…

Survey because I’m sick.

I’m feeling under the weather today, and have spent most of my afternoon in bed (I would have spent this morning in bed too, but I was scheduled to get my hair highlighted, and well, some things can’t wait, no matter HOW bad I might feel).

I’ve read 200 pages of my book, paid my bills, even addressed invitations for a shower I’m throwing in three weeks, and I’m still bored. So, I’m filling out another one of those silly surveys. We’ll see how it goes.

1. It’s 2AM on the weekend, and you are not home. You are more than likely:

I’m always home by 2 a.m. If I’m not, something must be terribly wrong. Call the police!

2. What’s the last thing you spent more than $100 on?

I spent $125 at Target yesterday on groceries and Christmas decorations they had on clearance. I got red placemats for $1.50 each (yea!) and about a dozen ornaments for about $1 each. I love post-Christmas bargains!

3. What do your bank checks look like?

I buy the cheapest versions my bank offers–I have tried the cute ones before, but I don’t really care about impressing my electric company, water company, etc. by cutesie checks.

4. Where did the shirt you are currently wearing come from?

I’m wearing my Cowtown Marathon t-shirt. I’m on their Board of Directors so I have a lot of free shirts. This version is last year’s brown shirt–it’s one of my favorites, very retro.

5. Name something that is on your Christmas wish list..

I haven’t started my list for next year. I mean, I still have 362 days to work on that.

6. What color is your toothbrush?

I would have to get up to check that, so I’m going to guess white. But I could be wrong.

7. Name something you collect?

I collect newspaper and magazine clippings that mention me or the hospital that I do public relations for. In my four years at work there I have filled about 10 large notebooks. Don’t worry, I keep those at the office, they’re not cluttering up my house.

8. Last restaurant you ate at?

I got Chick-fil-a with a friend a few days ago. And last night we ordered Papa John’s Pizza for a game night I hosted at my house.

9. Last person you bought a Birthday card for?

Must have been for my sister, whose birthday was in December. Happy Birthday Lindsay.

10. What is your worst bad habit?

Who me? Bad habits?

11. Name a magazine you subscribe to?

TIME and US Weekly. I have been wanting to subscribe to Rachel Ray’s magazine, but I can’t seem to fork over the $15 for the subscription.

12. Your favorite pizza toppings?

I like as many vegetables as possible. Even a little pineapple.

13. Who’s number were you looking up the last time you used a phone book?

Phone book? What is that? I haven’t used one of those in years. It’s called G-O-O-G-L-E.

14. I chose to skip this question… don’t you wish you knew what it was?

15. Name the last thing you cooked.

Yesterday I baked heart-shaped cupcakes and made a tomato basil dip for my game night party. I love to host parties of any kind, large or small.

16. Name something you wouldn’t want to buy used?

Shoes. Feet gross me out.

17. Which shoe do you put on first?

I’m too busy thinking about important things like world peace to remember which shoe I put on first. I’m just lucky if I pick two that match.

18. What is the last thing you remember losing?

Besides my sanity? I can’t find my digital camera–I’m hoping I left it at work.

19. What is the ugliest piece of furniture in your house?

I used to absolutely hate my bedroom furniture (it was a hand-me-down from a neighbor), until my sister and I refinished it and bought new hardware for it. Now it’s actually cute–somebody recently asked me if I bought it at Pottery Barn!

20. Last thing you bought and ended up returning?

I have a bunch of extra Christmas lights in the back of my car that I should return to Loews, but haven’t had time to yet.

21. What perfume/cologne do you wear?

Either Ralph Lauren’s Romance or an assortment of perfumes that I purchased in the South of France, right outside of Monaco (doesn’t that sound hip to say you bought something in the South of France? Did I mention I ran into the guy who plays “McSteamy” on Grey’s Anatomy while I was there?)

22. Your favorite board game?

Trivial Pursuit

24. Where did your vehicle come from?

Snowflake has been in my family for a loooong time. Like 9 years. I just got her this summer, after I sold my convertible. I won’t be getting another car until I finish grad school. No need for an unnecessary payment!

25. If a movie was made about your life what would the theme song be?

I’m a big fan of Ingrid Michaelson at the moment, so maybe one of her songs.

26. You’re sad, who can cheer you up easily?

My parents and sisters can always cheer me up. The last time I was really upset, my dad showed up at my house with new rocking chairs for my front porch. What a sweet guy.

27. What was the color of the bridesmaid dresses of the last wedding you went to?

Hmmm… I don’t remember. It was Amy’s wedding, but I don’t remember. I do remember that the bride’s dress was white (duh).

28. What house cleaning chore do you hate to do the most?

I don’t mind any of the inside chores. I don’t like to mow, and I really don’t like to edge the grass. But, I do it because otherwise I would probably get a big fine from the city, and it does make my house look better.

29. What is your favorite way to eat chicken?

I really love the teriyaki chicken burger from Red Robin. It’s very unhealthy and not my normal style, but for some reason I love LOVE it.

30. It is your birthday. You hope the cake is?

I like anything as long as the icing is whipped. Which reminds me, I’m hungry for those heart-shaped cupcakes I made yesterday…

Another Christmas

Another year, another Christmas. This one was really nice. We didn’t do a whole lot, but after a crazy-busy year, it was a relief to enjoy some peaceful family time without much stress or commitments.

Tonight we’re lighting a fire and firing up the new Wii video game. I hope you and your family also enjoyed a very MerryChristmas. I’m enjoying a few days off of work, where I’m going to get to play with some friends and catch up on my sleep!

Sometimes I bake.

I decorated Christmas cookies tonight. Again. Actually, for the third time this month. I have decorated dozens of cookies–some were beautiful, some were strange, others just messy. I’ve done this three times, with three different sets of friends. Each time the same thing happened. We had so much fun that we got silly and messy and laughed and had a grand time.

I think I love it because it reminds me of when I was a little girl, and I looked forward to making cookies with my mom. There’s something comforting about cooking with loved ones in your kitchen. I’m so thankful that I got to do that this year with some of the people closest to me.

Enough being sentimental. I need to get to bed, because tomorrow is the LAST day I will work in 2006! Yipee!