Monday, December 3, 2007

The First Snow

It began last night...Ron called and asked, "Babe, have you looked outside?" This is one of my favorite questions of all time, as my mother can attest. I pulled up the shade and the streets were covered in WHITE. Only a 1/4 of an inch at that point - just enough to cover the pavement and grass still showing - but it awakened something in me that sleeps far too often: delight!

I grabbed the dogs and danced around the apartment towards the door. Who cares about coats when the first snow is falling?! We ran up and down the sidewalk...I danced and the dogs jumped all over the place. Coming from Texas, this cold, tingling sensation was new to Merry and Molly so it was great fun watching them bound and roll all over the place.

Later, Ron and I took the dogs on a late-night walk through the snow-covered streets. I broke out my long underwear and snow boots; Ron wore his toboggan, justifiably. Since there were no cars around, we let Merry and Molly off their leashes - they loved the freedom and ran all over the place. Ron and I enjoyed the stillness, the muffled sound of freshly falling snow, and this precious moment together.

Thank you, Jesus, for the first snow!


On Thanksgiving Day, my mother-in-law asks everyone to make a list of 25 things they are thankful for. Then before she serves dessert and while the kids are napping, she asks everyone to share their list with everyone. And although there are groans and rolled eyes, I think it's one of the best parts of the day...pumpkin pie aside. So here's my list this year, in no particular order:

1. For Jesus - my loving and patient friend
2. Ronnie - my love, my confidant, my prince (because he makes me feel like a princess)
3. Family - their love, how the believe in us, how they left us a legacy of knowing Jesus
4. Merry and Molly - my dogs and work buddies (since I work from home now)
5. High Point - a great company to work for, doing Kingdom work; how I've been challenged, stretched and tried
6. Community of Faith Christian Fellowship - for how they have welcomed us, made us feel wanted, and help knit us in
7. Sarah Bianchi - a new kindred spirit and great new friend here in Boston
8. miraculous sell of our house - contracted the 1st day!
9. miracle apartment in Boston - everything we wanted and the 1st one we looked at!
10. my health and a sharp mind
11. how God has blessed us so we can bless others
12. cold weather
13. changing leaves and getting to see them everyday here in New England
14. really good coffee - 963 Cinnamon Creme Brulee
15. cocoons and how they remind me that "the butterfly is already becoming" (see older posts)
16. hydrangea plant in my kitchen - reminds me that Ronnie loves me and of God's intricate and beautiful creation
17. belly laughing, singing and dancing with Ronnie - how he gives me the freedom to be myself
18. for God's voice - that He speaks and that I can hear!
19. good books that are like friends
20. nice neighbors and a chance to get to know new people
21. Annie and Jim - 2 friends from high school who have recently re-entered our lives
22. Boston - beautiful, active city, living by the ocean
23. living in America - freedom to worship, think and choose for myself
24. 8 nieces and nephews (1 niece on the way!) who are healthy, happy and so much fun
25. holidays - being together with our family and friends and eating yummy food - can't ask for anything better!

Thursday, September 6, 2007're IT

So my friend Christine "tagged" me to write about the 8 quirkiest things about me...apparently this is a regular cycle of events in the blogging world, but since this is my first time, I guess I would be considered a "tag" virgin.

The Rules:
1. I have to post these rules before I give you the facts.
2. Each player starts with 8 random facts/habits about themselves.
3. People who are tagged need to write their own blog (about their 8 things) and post these rules.
4. At the end of your blog, you need to choose people to get tagged and list their names.
5. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged, and to read your blog.

Now presenting...things you would only know about me if you lived with me:

1. I have to run on the right side of my partner when I'm jogging with someone. If I try and run on the left then I collide into them the entire duration of our run. Natalie, Erin and Ron - you know this all too well.

2. I have different socks for different activities and specific socks that I wear with certain shoes. Most people have the typical dress socks, ankle socks and maybe even thick socks for winter. I however have running socks, hiking socks, casual tennis shoe socks, dress boot socks, cowboy boot socks and my husband's favorite: pajama socks. Ron thinks this is quite hilarious...of course, he has yet to figure out that there IS a difference between clothes for dirty work and clothes for looking nice. A common phrase in our household, "Babe!? How could you wear your new shirt/pants/shoes to (insert dirty job here; actual examples: stain the fence, wash the dog, mow the lawn, clean out the garage)???!!!" So perhaps this is not quite as quirky as he thinks...wink, wink.

3. I went through a "second" puberty in late college! If you look at pictures from sophomore to senior year, you'll see a dramatic difference. No surgery or drugs used, just plain old nature and hormones. My face shape changed, my hair turned really curly, I grew 2 more inches and my chest grew a cup size. Yep...strange, but true. Ask my BFF Bethany who lived with me for all 4 years in college!

4. I've had plastic surgery. Not necessarily the kind you're thinking, but I've had it just the same. I got my nose pierced in college (I still miss it!) and ended up being allergic to the cheap metal. My skin absorbed the metal and turned this lovely shade of blackish-green. I tried bleaching cremes, exfoliating like crazy, peels...nothing would take this gross over sized blackhead-looking thing I went under the knife. My genius doctor made 2 little slits, took out the offending skin and sewed me back up. A few hundred dollars later and I could go swimming again without being terribly ashamed of my former pleasure. I guess that's what vanity will do to you.

5. I can flare my nostrils (like a rabbit) at an alarming rate of speed. It used to be a contest between my siblings and my Daddy: who can flare the fastest?! Actually, when I had the above said surgery, my doctor hit a blood vessel in my nose and blood came pouring out and went all over my face and chin. His comment was, "You have exceptionally strong nose muscles...that should not have happened...I've never seen blood vessels like this..." Needless to say, I remained quiet and did not reveal my hidden talent. But I'll bet you can guess who always wins the contests.

6. I have a temper that can go from calm to furious in less than 3 seconds flat. I've often been told that I should have been born with red hair because then my temper would match my hair. My sweet mother will tell you that I've gotten much better than I used to be, but my husband will tell you I've still got a long way to go. Hats off to both of them for putting up with the "black Irish" in me!

7. I secretly HATE my cell phone. If I didn't need it - and yes, you really do need one in this day and age - then I would most certainly get rid myself of the blasted thing. Yes, I know this is shocking to most people - and I know that Erin is horrified I would put this in print - but I really do not like the fact that simply because I own a cell phone, people assume they should be able to get a hold of me at ALL hours. And if I'm doing something where I can't answer or heck, don't feel like answering, then they get mad! A cell phone to me gives you the option to talk anywhere at anytime - but it doesn't mean you should have to. Sorry peeps; leave a message and I'll call you back later...maybe.

8. When I'm eating, I save the best for last. I'm not necessarily talking about dessert (although I do have an unusual obsession with that too) but for each section of food on my plate, I will eat all the others surrounding it and save the best part for the last bite. For example, this evening we had fish, broccoli and potatoes. Now I am not a "section-eater" as in someone who only eats one food at a time, but I find the best part of the fish, the best piece of broccoli and the most perfect part of the potato, eat all the other parts of the rest of the food, and then save those 3 "best" items for last. Yum, yum! Ron got in trouble in the beginning of our marriage because he did not know that I saved my food. So when I only had a few little bites on my plate - the most delectable bites, mind you - he would reach over to my plate and have it in his mouth before I could object! Please see #6 to find out what would happen next.

Okay...Ronnie, Kristin, Bethany J and Bethany H...tag, you're IT!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

100 years of Anne

2008 will mark the 100th anniversary of the publishing of Anne of Green Gables, LM Montgomery's beloved book about the mischevious red-headed orphan, Anne Shirley. In celebration of the anniversary, my best friend Bethany and I are planning a trip to Prince Edward Island to do all things "Anne" next July. I got so excited thinking about the trip, that I just had to reread the books! And although I've read them numerous times during childhood, the last time was over 10 years ago.

My brother and husband can attest to how much I truly love Anne...

At a game night, the trivia question was, "What was the name of Anne Shirley's love interest?" And yes, because my brother had watched the movies numerous times with me throughout our childhood, he answered without hesitation, "Gilbert Blythe," much to the amazement of his teammates.

My husband is consistently amazed at how I love to "watch" the Anne movies while I truth, I don't actually watch the movie; I simply press play and turn it up loud so that I can hear it all throughout the house. I've watched it SO many times before that I know exactly what's going on in every scene simply from the dialogue and music.

But back to the books... These books are like good friends - they've become a part of me and have helped shape who I am. Anne's misadventures, insecurities and hopes all resonate with the little girl/woman in me, trying to figure out what it means to love and be loved, to not let go of my ideals and to learn from my ("many though not repeated") mistakes.

I am the type of person who reads at almost every chance - in a restaurant by myself, on the elevator, at a red light - which has left me open to many suspicious stares and awkward glances as I literally laugh out loud while Anne snubs Gilbert's offer of a strawberry apple, dyes her hair green and forgets to put flour in a cake.

So in tribute to Anne, here are just a few of my favorite parts:

Regarding vanity...

" 'But just now I feel pretty nearly perfectly happy. I can't feel exaclty perfectly happy because - well, what color would you call this?'

...Matthew was not used to deciding on the tints of ladies' tresses, but in this case there couldn't be much doubt.

'It's red, ain't it?' he said.

The girl let the braid drop back with a sigh that seemed to come from her very toes and to exhale forth all the sorrow of the ages.

'Yes, it's red,' she said resignedly. 'Now you see why I can't be perfectly happy...'"

Regarding love...

"Once, when no one was looking, Gilbert took from his desk a little pink candy heart with a gold motto on it, 'You are sweet,' and slipped it under the curve of Anne's arm. Whereupon Anne arose, took the pink heart gingerly between the tips of her fingers, dropped it on the floor, ground it to powder beneath her heel, and resumed her position without deigning to bestow a glance on Gilbert."

Regarding fashion...

"...she felt very miserable; every other little girl in the class had puffed sleeves. Anne felt that life was really not worth living without puffed sleeves."

Here's to 100 years of Anne!

Friday, August 3, 2007

the butterfly is already becoming

Originally uploaded by pcrispin

I have wanted to go to Africa for as long as I can remember. This summer, that dream was fulfulled when I went on a mission trip to Blantyre, Malawi. And although I learned many things and had an amazing experience, I did not feel any sort of great or dramatic change within myself...and was in fact, disappointed. I had prayed and prayed for this remarkable change, complete healing of my heart and the re-discovery of my True Self. So when this didn't happen like I expected, I was frustrated and somewhat disillusioned with my life-long dream. Yet, things are never what they seem...

I began to pray...and thankfully, God spoke...

I "randomly" came upon a book in the bookstore called When the Heart Waits, by Sue Monk Kidd. In the first chapter, she tells about her experience of coming upon a cocoon and how the rememberance of a certain childhood story accurately described her current situation...

Yellow, a caterpillar in Trina Paulus's book Hope for the Flowers, saw another caterpillar spinning a cocoon and asked, "If I decide to become a butterfly...what do I do?"
"Watch me, " came the reply. "I'm making a cocoon. It looks like I'm hiding, I know, but a cocoon is no escape. It's an in-between house where the change takes place...During the change, it will seem...that nothing is happening, but the butterfly is already becoming. It just takes time."

I love how God speaks to me in ways that relate uniquely with my soul, my personality...He speaks to me in books...and I knew that God was saying, "You too have entered the chrysalis. And even though you do not sense the change, the butterfly is already becoming. It just takes trust me and rest in MY timing for your shaping, growing and revelation."

So, like Kidd, I pray I am able to embrace and even rest in the cocoon with courage and endurance...that I will trust the change that is happening, even though I cannot see.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007


We're moving to Boston! It seems like we have been talking about it for so long and now it's almost here. I am have a myriad of feelings all swirling around inside of me - sadness because I've finally learned to like Dallas and love the people here, anticipation because I've always wanted to live on the East Coast and because Boston might be one of the most amazing cities in the entire United States.

And much get back up north where it's cold and there's lots of snow; where we can eat fresh and yummy seafood; where I get to wear sweaters and jeans and boots 3/4 out of the year; where it's green and there are parks and trees everywhere; where I can walk almost anywhere; where we are 10 minutes from the ocean and an hour from the mountains; where there is so much history here it puts me to shame how little I actually know of it. Wow, I'm getting myself even more pumped up.

Since I don't have any pictures yet of our humble abode - our miracle as we like to call it - for now a map of our new destination will have to do. So take a look at section 6 "Brighton" and then go slightly to your left, right on the line. This is where our new apartment is located - right on the line of Brighton and Newton. Remind me to write about our Miracle Apartment on a later blog.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Created Because...

As I get further and further away from college, I find it much more difficult to keep in touch with people. Sometimes life just gets in the way; things that are important (like calling an old friend just to check in) become less important when I'm tired and when my house is dirty and when Ron has worked late and I haven't cooked dinner yet. Not that I want to be that way, but it just all of us.

I've honestly been against blogging for a long time. I used to work with this youth group that instead of using it for constructive purposes, would tear each other down and make it a billboard of the latest gossip. The evening's conversations would end up being tearful and furious recitations of "what he/she said about me on her blog and how I'm so flippin' mad that I'm going write some more BS about him/her on my blog now!" Gross. So it's taken me a little while to come around.

But now that we are moving to Boston, I want to make a conscious effort to be more deliberate in keeping up with people, to let people know what's going on in our lives and all the things that happen in our "unpredictable adventure" - more simply called LIFE. I've realized how imperative it is to share our Journey with others - the only way to foster true community. Hence, the creation of this blog.

So thank you, Steven and Christine, for encouraging me to do this and for thinking that I might be a good blogger.