Monday, December 13, 2010

20 Other Things You Never Cared To Know...

Here's a bunch of other crap you never wanted to know about me:

I only have 1 biological cousin.

I really miss my 20's. A lot more than I thought I ever would. Oh God, I miss my 20's.

Sally Hansen Insta Dry Nail Polish is ah-mazing.

I think I pass gas more than the average gal. But most women pretend like they don't fart unless it's a pre-cursor to diarrhea. So I don't really have anyway to judge. However, my gas is nothing like my dog's. His will melt your face off.

I love my neighborhood, but I'm rather bummed that I live 30 some-odd minutes away from most of my friends. Boo.

At some point during the last few years, I lost the ability to spell. And I leave words out of sentences. My texts seem to have morphed into a guessing game. Oh how I my twenties.... See what I did there?

Isaac and I are watching Mike Birbiglia on Netflix right now. He's making it very, very hard to concentrate.

I own an orange Clemson Tigers hat. I think that's college football, maybe? I honestly don't care who they are, Isaac bought it for $4 in Myrtle Beach last October so he wouldn't fry his head. And then I stole it from him. I wear it A LOT. I think it's cute. I also pretend it matches everything. Purple, Red, other shades of Orange.... I know my friends make fun of me for it. Actually, probably everybody makes fun of me, my friends are just willing to do it to my face : )




I have always been sloppy. The night before my college graduation I was leaping over piles of stuff on the floor so I could get from my bed to my desk, which were only about 5 ft apart.... I was leaping like a lord in my graduation dress shoes... well, I should also tell you that I can't really leap, and I have NO sense of balance. None. Zero. Zilch. Anyway, back to my leaping... I misjudged my 2nd leap and landed on my back in an array of 4 yr old syllabus', misplaced homework, $300 books that the bookstore now said where worth $5 and clothes.... I thought I sprained my ankle for a hot second... anyway, so I used to be really messy. Now I'm just sorta sloppy. That's what that story was about. And no, you can never get those 5 mins back again.

I luh-uved The New Mickey Mouse Club when I was younger. I used to practice their entrance in the mirror. A LOT.

One summer I worked at The Discovery Channel warehouse. I secretly prayed over the Buddha figurines and children's Wichan "How-To" books. I knew it was stupid then and I know it's stupid now. But I still kinda don't feel that bad about it.

When my dog pants heavily, his wee wee jiggles. It makes me laugh. Just typing this made me giggle.

Isaac just told a joke using the phrase, "choking the chicken". And then he told me what choking a "chicken" means. omg. OMG.

One winter, about 11 years ago, I worked at the Olive Garden in Florence y'all. One afternoon I went into the women's bathroom and realized that someone had puked what looked to be, an entire garden salad all over the stall. I'm talking the toilet seat, all 3 walls, floor, the works.  For years I told the story of the day somebody 'tossed their salad' in the Olive Garden bathroom. Only about 3 years ago did anybody inform me of what that actually meant. You know, for growing up and hanging out with the drum line and having a ton of guy friends, I feel like I got a little left out of the loop. Somebody should start filling me in on these things. Fo realises.

I really like this dog. I am uncertain of what his feelings are for me, but I dig him.

This is my friend Sean. He's always amusing, but sometimes he's just hilarious. Like pee-your-pants funny. And he has a fantastic sock collection.










I mildly manage a comedy troupe. I simply adore those boys.

Do you have that one piece of furniture in your house that is very simple, but you just love it for no real reason? When we moved into our house, the living room had the ugliest ceiling fan.The lamp covering was an off white porcelain creation with what appeared to be a college graduation tassel attached to it. Thanks to the Home Depot and my father-in-law, it has been replaced with a beautifully simple and elegant black ceiling fan. It's something I use everyday. And I heart it. And apparently, I have no pictures of the said fan. dang it.


There is no bad time for ice cream.

I really miss my grandpa.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Update #2

Click here if you're still interested reading about my journeys thru Nigeria...

Click here if you're not : )

Friday, December 3, 2010

Africa

It's been about 2 1/2 weeks since Isaac and I set foot in American soil after spending 9 days in Nigeria. Instead of bombarding folks with info and pictures, I've decided to try and break each day up into a blog entry. Disclaimer - The first one is pretty boring, mainly because it deals with the flight and the few short hours we were in Abuja. 97% of which was spent sleeping : )

You can follow the blog here.

Friday, November 19, 2010

what the hey hey is wrong with a hug?

I love hugs. I love to give them. I love to receive them. To me, a hug exemplifies the characteristics of the best of the human race. It knows no language barrier. It can console, express gratitude, love, lust, friendship, mend broken relationships and is the simplest way to say "I'm glad you're in my life" or "I've missed you" -  even if you just saw them that morning. A hug can say so much, without ever having said a word.

However, something seems to happen to hugs once a person enters into marriage. I am uncertain of it's origin or what seems to break in a man's mind, but something overpowers a male's sense of reality and logic in the hug-giving realm. Let me give you an example.

I have a good guy friend that I have known for years and years. I knew this person before they got married and have been good friends with their wife for ages. We used to hug all of the time. Like, full on hugs. Nothing was weird about it. I didn't think, "Hey, he's single, I'm single, I bet this hug means something..." I took it for what it was - an expression of our friendship. But suddenly, after my friends got married, there were no more legit hugs. I would go in for one, only to be swooped to the side for the dreaded side hug.  Nothing says "oh, you're awkward" more than the side hug. I hate them. But worst of all, when I inquired about the sudden dissing of our friendship hugs, I was told it was because of my chest. WHAT?!?!?!?! WHAAAAA?!?!?!?! Seriously?????? The chest that I've had for almost 2 decades, the one that did not develop the moment you said your "I do's".  UGH.  And then I began to see it - the paradigm was shifting between good friends who were now married. It seems that everywhere I looked, a secret man-code had been exchanged.

Back when we were all single, I never thought that giving any of my guy friends a hug was something dirty. So why is it now that we're married? I have good guy friends, I mean good friends, some of whom I would consider to be like family, who will not give me a real hug. It's depressing. When I hug my girl friends, I never think, 'hmm, I wonder if they're a lesbian?"  So why should it be any different with a man? Because honestly, the way that I hug Isaac is TOTALLY different than the way I hug anyone else. It lingers. I smell his shirt, I kiss his neck. He holds me.

The downfall of the American "real hug" has seriously has been bugging me for years. I've been wanting to write about it for months. To be able to freely say that there is nothing wrong with me or my chest. In lieu of my annoyances with my guy friends, I've created a short list of weird hugs that exist. So just man-up and give me a real hug, dang it.


* The Rodeo- This refers to one of the many hugs that you don't ever see coming. Here's how it works- you're on your way into another room, you're brushing past people when suddenly, in one swift pivoting motion, an arm becomes interlocked with your Adam's Apple and your back is thrust into the rib cage of of one of your closest man buddies. Very similar to the way police men catch alligators on Discovery Channel or the way animal control captures stray dogs. It's like a backwards real hug. It's confusing, but somehow you're still thankful for it.
* Shaken, Not Stirred- This is a creepy kind of hug. Could be instigated by a man or women. It's a full on hug, but with a death grip and lots of bouncing and/or shaking. It's like being stuck in the blender of all hugs. It's awkward and you want a drink afterwards.
* Humpty Dump- You see this a lot at sporting arenas. Typically occurs after a big win. Grown men will run and literally leap with all of their nasty sweatiness onto another man's back or neck. Sometimes even their chest. It all simply depends on the way the person is facing. It's a domino effect, with the whole team soon joining into this celebration with loud cheers and eventually jumping. It's a weird entanglement of hormones and Leap Frog and Tone Loc and Barrel of Monkeys. Usually followed by showering together.
* Side Hug- The deceiver of all hugs. It says, "I like you, but I don't want my wife to see me hugging you". Can be done as a pass by, a swift motion that leaves the hugged stunned for a moment, since they were unaware it was even coming. I consider this to be the most insulting hug, since it seems to say that a real hug would mean something dirty.
* Oops, I Did It Again Hug- Typically occurs at large family functions or reunions of sorts. You're passing out hugs like candy to a fat kid, when you realize in your moment of bliss, you hugged the one person you can't stand. Could be similar to flipping off your Grandma, you're not sure how to take it back.
* Pillow Talk- When someone of short stature walks up to you and buries their head in your chest multiple times until they find a comfortable spot. Had this happen to me recently. A-W-K-W-A-R-D.
* The County Fair- You've seen this technique at fairgrounds when individuals leap after pigs and goats in order to capture them. Most frequently found at large parties when someone comes from behind, captures you, covers your eyes and yells, "Guess Wwwwwwhhhhhhhhhooooo??????"
* Karaoke Choke Hold- Could also be referred to as the Drunk Chic Hug. Usually happens after one of more people become inebriated and decide that singing old '80's hits into a microphone will cure their ill. Upon completion of song or songs, one arm is swung from behind and wrapped across an unsuspecting friend's neck. Must be followed by a white-knuckle choke hold on the person and a good shake-down. May or may not be followed by a kiss on the cheek and one or more, "I love you man(s)".

Thursday, November 4, 2010

leaving on a jet plane....

Tomorrow Isaac and I are boarding several planes on our way to Nigeria. If you don't have any idea on what I'm talking about, just click here and maybe it'll help clarify a bit.

For those of you who are interested in following our journey while we're there, check out this blog. I don't know exactly how often it'll be updated by the leaders, but well, here ya go.

Wish us well.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

embarrassment + residents + a snap back to reality

I work a silly amount of hours on Saturdays and I like to complain about it. But I also like being off 3 days a week, so it's a bit tongue in cheek... Regardless, I dig my job. I have been given the opportunity to work with some very talented, very smart, very funny individuals. One of the bonuses of my position is that I get a chance to find cool recreational activities for the residents to attend. I try really hard to search out things that I know are safe and enjoyable and affordable, but aren't solely catered to folks with special needs....Just over a year ago, one of my buddy's decided to make a little movie and it turned out to be just freaking hilarious. Isaac played a fairly big part behind the scenes and was delightful as the deputy in the film. Anywoo, the movie debuted last night at the Hollywood Casino in Lawrenceburg, IN. Two of my residents wanted to attend, so we ventured on over to watch the show.

Both make friends fairly easily, so it wasn't totally cool with them for me to be sitting cheek to cheek during the film. Understandable, so I sat a couple rows back with my Isaac and my in-laws. All was well until about 1/2 way thru, one started laughing really, really loud and repeating his favorite lines. During some rather tense scenes, one of the other residents shouted out, "2 Kings!??!" and several "Oh no's!"..... Stuff like that usually doesn't bother me, but for some reason it really did last night. I got all embarrassed and Isaac just kept reassuring me they were fine. After the movie ended, there was a Q&A session with the director and one of my guys asked what seemed to me,  a couple of "embarrassing questions".  I was mortified. Every muscle in my body was tense. And then to top it all off, from the time we hit the escalators to the parking garage, he reenacted his favorite scene, which just happened to be a dirty dance, in front of several hundred people. Each time shouting, "and then he did this to that handicapped lady!"  Holy shit.

Thankfully, on the 45 minute drive home, I had some time to think about my actions. I decided I was embarrassed for 2 main reasons:
1) It was my buddy's night. He and a slew of others have worked tirelessly on this project and I didn't want anything to overshadow that.
2) I really, truly love the residents that I work with in that house. I'm lucky enough to work with some of the coolest people on the planet. Sometimes they annoy me. Sometimes the choices that they make anger me. But I love their hearts and I very desperately want others to see how amazing they are. Most of the residents that I work with are aware that they have some form of disability, but I am confident that they don't see themselves as disabled. It's actually quite interesting, because I've had the opportunity to converse with a few of them on the way they few "the handicapped" - aka people who have very defined physical disability. To some of my residents, there is pity thrown because to them, the other person's handicap is very tangible, very defined - you can see that there is something different. I don't really think that my guys connect with someone who's disability differs from theirs. ( I think that's why my residents didn't get upset with the scene with the woman in the wheelchair)  For the most part, they don't see themselves as broken (nor should they) or delayed in some areas. I think one of the biggest fears that I have for my guys is that other "typical" individuals would walk away saying things like, "Those disabled folks sure said some crazy things".  Even though I get that they have a developmental disability, I never want that to trump the truth that they're a human first, and ridiculously witty and intelligent. 

And honestly, my guy asked the questions he did during the Q&A session because to him, he really was concerned about those issues. And I didn't take them to see the movie because I thought they'd appreciate the budget or what type of camera was used. I took the both of them because they like to laugh. And my friends are funny. He reenacted the dance scene because he thought it was hilarious. She said "Oh no" and "2 Kings!", not because she's a master poker player, but because she's smart enough to pick up on the cues that something tense or dangerous or uncertain is about to happen. Before we had even left the ballroom, my guy was asking when he could see it next because "it was so, so, so funny!" and the director is "his boy".  (I always forget that this is the residents term of endearment for him)

Shame on me for being embarrassed when I was the one who invited them. Shame on me for dishonoring them by being more concerned with what others thought instead of focusing on the fact that they were enjoying a really good flick. Shame on me for slipping up and for viewing them as someone with a disability instead of the seeing them for who they are.  Clearly, I still have a way's to go.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

the dog who wouldn't stop puking

This is my dog/child. His name is Cassiuss Clay Kevin Stambaugh. I used to joke that he was Catholic because all of the Catholic parents I knew growing up adorned their kids with really long names. But then I met the Boyds. And they're not Catholic.

I think it would be funny if I named my next dog, Pope.  Pope John Mary Katherine. Then people wouldn't have to wonder if it was Catholic or not. Although they might wonder about something else.

Anywoo, Cassius had surgery to remove a growth on his leg. After popping a couple of the stitches out, the vet gave us a much larger cone. (and for only $27.99! what a deal...)  The last cone made Cash look like he got stuck in a lampshade. But this new baby is a satellite dish.  Anyway, on with the story... so because of the much larger cone, we could no longer put him in his cage when we were gone - he just won't fit - so we left him out. We had been doing this for about a week and a 1/2 and we were SO, SO, SO impressed that he hadn't destroyed the house. Then about 3:45am last Thursday night, Isaac and I were awoken to the sounds of vomitish noises. Isaac cleaned it up and we all went back to bed.  Then about an 1 1/2 hr later, it happened again. Puke on the bedroom floor. My mind immediately raced to this goofy dog and I started getting nervous. Friday swung around and things seemed good until about 5am Friday night/Saturday morning. The puke. It was back. On our bedroom floor.  I had to go to work fairly shortly after that, but the whole drive I just kept praying to the sweet Lord Jesus that Cash didn't eat a nut he wasn't supposed to (our backyard is nothing but hazelnuts) because we can't afford to keep sending him to the vet. I got to work and started checking out what the interest rates were on our credit cards, etc.... Then I got a text from Isaac. It made no sense. How could it be? I decided to call to get all of the details.

Turns out, after I left for work, Cash puked AGAIN in the bedroom (4x combines total).  Isaac let him outside. Later on, Isaac happened to catch him playing/eating something. Turns out the dog had puked outside too. What did he puke up, you ask? Wait for it.... Wait for it... a whole pair of my underwear. Isaac said by the looks of it, it had been in there a couple of days. Isaac and I were amazed/disgusted and hung up.  Then I got another text from Isaac that read - "And a sock too!".  Turns out the dog puked a 4x time that morning (Running tally: 6x total) and this time he puked up a sock.  Mind you, this is the 2nd sock he's puked up in 2 weeks.  So all of this time we thought he was doing so well while we were gone, he was simply grazing on our laundry. Unbelievable.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

been doing a little thinking

While driving tonight, I was creating a mental checklist of things that would make my marriage "perfect". Mmm, maybe that's not the correct term.  Regardless, if I was living in a "perfect world" and I had a "perfect husband" and a "perfect marriage", what would that look like?.... a few things came to mind, but one that stood out, was that Isaac would be proud of me. And then the idea came rushing thru..... Do I give him anything to be proud of? Am I the type of wife/person/human that he can be satisfied with?  I very desperately want him to be pleased with my so-called "accomplishments".  But more than that, I just want him to be proud of me. Of who I actually am, inside and out.  

Another thought... one that I've been chewing on for about a week now.... I think I'm in small group right now soley for the community aspect. I need people around me who I believe actually care for me. When I'm at my ugliest, they're there. There's really only a sacred few with whom I share the most ugly portions with, but for the most part, I know that I'm surrounded by 10-11 people who give a rip. I'm not really in small group so I can "grow in Christ". That may change in the future, but at this point in the game, I'm just there for the people. Maybe that's selfish. Maybe that's part of the evolution of the group. Maybe that makes me the weak member. But I'm not convinced that attending the small group simply for the aspect of community is wrong. At least not tonight.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

20 randomly weird, silly things about me

Here's some random facts that I've discovered about myself in the past few years.... feel free not to read, they're silly.

1) As much as I want to be "independent" and my own person with my own likes/dislikes, I've realized that I enjoy many of the same foods as my dad. We even order the same meal sometimes. And I heart Diet Coke and m&m's with the same ferociousness as my mother. We stand alike. We both leave 30 minute long voicemails... We when stress out, sometimes our bodies react the same way.

2) I constantly scan FM radio stations. I do not drive without the radio on. (although in the past 1-2yrs I have tried to every few weeks, turn off the radio and talk to Jesus) If a Foreigner, Maroon 5 or James Taylor song comes on, I will stop and listen. I will always listen to "Eye of the Tiger".  Honest to goodness.

3) There's some artists that I like, but I can't listen to without commentary. For example,
     John Mayer -  Man, he seems like a douchebag
     Jason Mraz - His first cd was sooo much better than the second one. I really like the first one... He wears funny hats. You know who else's first cd was better than the second one? Jars of Clay. yeah.
    
4) I think people who solely listen to AM radio are closed minded and silly. Go ahead and judge me, I just judged you.

5) I never make my bed unless I know someone is coming over. There is no point in making my bed when I'm the only one who sees it every day. Why would I spend 5 minutes making it and 3 minutes tearing it apart every night? That's 8 minutes that I can't get back every day. And since I'm always running late, those minutes are precious. (I also heard that people who don't make their bed get less dust mites. I'll be honest, that's not the reason I don't make my bed, but it makes me feel better about it)

6) I make the ugliest chocolate chip cookies ever. They're as flat as a 4th grade girl.

7) Dark chocolate speaks to me. It's just SO MUCH BETTER.

8) I hate spiders the way that Carrie Prejean hates filling out padgent applications truthfully.

9) I won't make brownies anymore without chocolate chips in them.

10)
I have a crush on almost any long-sleeved plaid shirt. I think I always have. If it's a Blue or Purple plaid shirt, my heart skips a beat. Every 3-4 years I find a good plaid shirt. I recently found one at Wally World for $12. When I wear it, I feel cute and giggly. It has flowers on the inside of the collar and fits well. The only thing it's missing is snap buttons.
Side Confession: There's a whole row of long sleeved men's plaid shirts in Target. I walk by that section every time I'm in the store and just drool. And some of them have the snap buttons. Extra drool.

11) Talking theology with Isaac in the dark is kinda sexy.

12) I have always kinda hated games. However, there's a Bingo hall when you turn into my neighborhood and I'm looking for someone to go with me.

13) Football season means lazy Sunday afternoons with Isaac. It also means a big pot of chili and grilled cheeses made in the George Forman. And hoodies and pajama bottoms and blankets.

14) I have 2 birthmarks on my neck. And then to add insult to injury, I developed 3 freckles right in a row. I also have man hands and ex-large nostrils. I hate all of these things.

15) If I had the money, I'd change my hair every 2 months. I have no patience with it.

16) I'm rarely satisfied.

17) Cookouts are probably one of my favorite ways to spend time with friends. Even our wedding reception was a catered cookout and pies and cornhole. Down home fun.

18) If I'm in a large body of water, I will pee in it. I've actually begun doing this so much, I have to concentrate on not peeing in pools. I just grossed you out, didn't I?

19) Blues Brothers and the old Star Wars (and maybe the Lord of the Rings Trilogy) are the perfect movies any time of the day. The Breakfast Club is the perfect Saturday morning movie to wake up to.

20) Music speaks to me in ways that books just never will. There were many artists, (but mainly The Newsboys) whose music genuinely changed (or at least challenged) my thinking about God and life during my teen and college years. I would assume artists of any genre would desire their work to cause consumers to think about such things.

Life changing information, right? : )    So what are some of your silly things about yourself? And who's going to drive to Springfield Township and play Bingo with me????

Friday, September 3, 2010

saying good-bye

14 years ago, my mom and brother brought home the cutest puppy from the pound. The story is that a police officer found her in a dumpster. Who really knows if that story was a sham or not, but it worked, regardless. My brother named our new dog, Lucy. Dad renamed her Lucy Lee Skank Wilder. (somebody please tell me you remember the Gold Star commericals with "skank" as the star???)

Lucy hasn't been doing so hot these past few years. She's blind as a bat, old, angry and has selective hearing. She's an old man wrapped up into a 30lb frame with fur. The vet recently discovered she has a giant tumor which has been causing her pain and the loss of mobility. Lots of other terribly crappy things too, but the point is, at 3:30pm this afternoon, my parents are taking her to be put to sleep. The vet says it's the best thing. Dang it, I'm crying. Death sucks, even if it's just a dog.

Lucy and Dad were besties. Mainly because she thought his jokes were HILARIOUS.
Lucy was a big fan of the holidays.


She could touch her tongue to her nose. So, so talented.


In her prime.


In the past 5 years, that dog's breath could make the hair
on Isaac's back stand up. But she still had all of her real teeth.


her facebook profile pic.



We're smiling, but Lucy is obviously eyeing our leftovers.
She loved Super Bowl Sundays.


Lucy and the bug both dying. I thought it was poetic.
And lame. But this is my blog so I'll post what I want to.


Lucy always hated Cassius.


Grandma Wilder came over to say goodbye.
My brother John is holding Lucy.


I told them to smile. Grandma said there was nothing to smile about,
then immediately began laughing at her own non-joke.
She does that a lot. And I love her for it.

My final pic with Lucy. Nevermind my neck rolls. ew.
I'll miss you, Lucy.














Thursday, September 2, 2010

just wonderin'

Cash typically meets me in the front yard when I get home at night. Our routine goes a little like this:
* I park my car in the street and say hello to the dog by name.
* Cash then proceeds to crouch down and/or hide in the bushes.
* Obviously, I see him do all of this. But I play along and call out his name like I can't see him btwn what have to be, the ugliest bushes known to man.
* He then leaps out and greets me with a kiss/slobber fest, a few scratches (dog has claws like a raptor) and about 12 laps around the yard with a toy or stick in his mouth.

This is our routine and I love it. I never question Cash's love for me. Even when he hurts me, I know he did it on accident. He forgives and forgets very quickly.

And that's proof why Dogs are Jesus is disguise and Cats are selfish beasts from Satan. The End.
Just kidding. Sit down, Julee. Although, Dog spelled backwards is God... Just saying....

Anyway, back to my story... tonight I realized something. Cash is content in his own yard. His tiny, little fenced in yard. He doesn't seem to notice the most random, hideous tree. The tree that I would love to cut down one day... He doesn't seem to care that his front yard is decorated with 1/2 dead bushes. Bushes that were, I'm certain, disgustingly disfigured even before we moved in. Or the giant dirt pile that looks like we buried a body there. Cash is happy within his own fence. Maybe it's because he's never really lived anywhere else before. Maybe it's because he's grateful for what he's got. Maybe he just doesn't know any better.

I haven't fully digested this yet.... It just struck me as interesting.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

aftermath

had a cookout the other day for some friends and people I hadn't met yet (neighbors). Isaac and I worked tirelessly for several days to achieve the look of a clean house. But Sunday at 4pm, it actually was clean. It was soooooo beautiful. spotless, almost. all of the food had been prepared and carried outside in fun dishes.

and then people left. and in an instant, my kitchen morphed back. and there was deep sorrow.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

how to love me

I haven't really bragged on him in a long while. But Isaac deserves some credit. He has been just perfect this week. He was exactly what I needed when I needed it.

Sunday - didn't do squat. Haven't had a day like that in um, well let's see.... forever. On my way home from church, Isaac called to say that he had picked up Chipotle for me. Side Note-Most of my emotions revolve around food. It is my number one love language, I'm fairly confident.... Anywoo, it was thoughtful and sweet. We just sat around munching on delicious burritos, played with Cassius, watched movies, walked around Wal-Mart and then went to Waffle House. All the silly, plain jane things we did while we were dating. But it was nice and relaxing and we had real conversations about life and each other. It was just perfect. Dumb crap like that woos me.

Tuesday - BAD day at work. B-A-D. anger. stress. argh. argh. ARGH. Isaac's almost always in bed when I get home now, because we're on opposite shifts, but he heard about what a bad day I was having and told me he'd stay up. Because of paperwork, I ended up leaving late and didn't get home until almost midnight, but there he was, sitting on the couch waiting for me. The man stayed up until 1am listening to me moan and complain and playing with my hair. He didn't try and fix the situation, complain about what I did wrong... that made my week.

Wednesday - Every once in a while I get more needy than I already am and I typically will blow up his phone. Not seeing each other for days at a time makes it a little more necessary, but whatever... Anyway, he picked his phone a lot and answered all of my questions and didn't relay to me how annoyed he was that I kept calling.

Thursday - Isaac waited until super late in the morning to call me so he didn't wake me up... and then asked me if I wanted to meet for lunch. Remember food being my number one love language?

I doubt any of you have made it this far, but I didn't really write it for you anyway.
This week no one complained about the dishes or the clothes or the dog. It's been pretty simple and my days may seem silly and dumb, but to me they were priceless.

ps- and he stood up for me via facebook on something. I hadn't even brought it up to him. It's kinda cool when your friends stand up for you, but it's flippin awesome when your husband does.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Things Cassius Loves

his rabbit
his favorite pot

licking my leg (let's be honest - who doesn't?)

our welcome mat

his duck
eating our shed door. he literally ATE it apart.

urinating in the same spot every day so that our grass dies in the front yard
tilling the ground in the backyard so that our grass dies.
chewing off 3/4 of the air conditioning drain pipe so
he doesn't have to bend over to get a drink (see far left)

Friday, July 23, 2010

restoration

Last week at work, some of my co-workers threw a party in honor of two residents rekindling their friendship. It had been marred in the past by hurtful comments and missteps, but thru the guidance of a few staff, the resident’s friendship is in the process of being restored. So the community rejoiced and there was a party. It was chop full of bad karaoke, dancing and of course, cornhole, but it was so much fun. I went home from work that night happy.

I have to believe our Heavenly Dad is in the process of restoring broken messed up relationships. That’s He’s probably not too grand on the concept of us staying put in our self-indulged ideals and tattered hearts. I mean really, the Bible is basically one tangled web of stories about a messy dance between the Creator and the Created – with the latter constantly stepping on toes as we very desperately try to take the lead. And for as many stories there are of broken, messed up individuals, there’s just as many of God the healer, the restorer, the rescuer. He’s a jealous God. Maybe that’s why he fights so hard for the restoration of his family.

Monday, July 19, 2010

part 2: these shorts were made for walking


Part Deux: I sent myself this photo of Cash on our walk last Thursday. It just arrived in my e-mail. I feel like the Pony Express wouldn't have failed me as much as AT&T has lately.....

ps -check out his tongue. if there was ever a KISS cover band made up of dogs, Cash would be Gene Simmons paws down.


Part Un: Cash needed some quality time today, so this morning he and I went on a little run thru the neighborhood. Except, after about 4 feet, I quickly realized that my new shorts weren't up for the task. Apparently I bought them a little too big...

So we walked for 1.7 miles. It took us roughly about 50 minutes, so it was kinda of a slow walk, but I was sweating so much, I didn't care. In that mile I lost 1lb in water weight. That seems silly to me. I also carried Cash's poo in a bag for about 97% of the trip. About a mile into the journey Cash got really sleepy and found a nice yard in the shade to take a nap in. It took a while, but I convinced him to get back up.

Then I had pizza and 3/4 of an ale for lunch.

Friday, July 16, 2010

these shorts were made for walking

So we walked for 1.7 miles. It took us roughly about 50 minutes, so it was kinda of a slow walk, but I was sweating so much, I didn't care. In that mile I lost 1lb in water weight. That seems silly to me. I also carried Cash's poo in a bag for about 97% of the trip. About a mile into the journey Cash got really sleepy and found a nice yard in the shade to take a nap in. It took a while, but I convinced him to get back up.

Then I had pizza and 3/4 of an ale for lunch.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

photos that make me laugh

Oh tom foolery. My grandma made me that jacket. It has road signs all over it. It's hard to wrap one's mind around how stylish I looked in 6th grade.


This is the year that I dressed up like a prostitute for Halloween. I remember that I cut up an old t-shirt and wore a peach (flesh-colored) turtleneck under it. And lots of accessories. And my fav hat and leggings. And a skirt that almost came down to my knees. I'm not sure if I knew what a prostitute was back then.




Actually, I just really like this photo. At our old house in Burlington. About 27 years ago...


I don't ever remember Winnie the Pooh being so ugly.


My mom made us matching Christmas sweatshirts. Yeah, you can be jealous of the hat. HA!


My brother looks like a beaver here.



Saturday, July 10, 2010

my foot. my foot. my foot is on fire.

just going to mention how sad I am that out of the 3 people that read my blog, only one of you responded to my stupid prayers post...

Nearer God to Thee suddenly popped into my head...

my foot is asleep

not that many people entered the contest to name QCP's fanbase. more than slightly bummed.

apparently gray hair has been hiding out in the back of my head for a while now. anger.

my foot is still asleep

it's flipping cold in here

Isaac's editing his movie. I have a feeling he'll be doing this for a while.

I accidentally signed myself up to work 21 days in a row. so, so dumb.

trying to wake my foot up

despicable me is so cute. I loved it.

I also love annie murphy. and debbie boyd. and julee cifani. and jess docherty. and jessie stegman.

I think I will try and convince Isaac to go eat at Brotherton's tomorrow. The veggie omelet is beyond delicious

my foot is kinda starting to hurt now.

I miss my sister-in-laws...

I may go and watch some snl in bed now

Sunday, July 4, 2010

lessons and a little more switchfoot

Things I have learned in the past 30 years...

1) Money will not make me happy. It just makes me comfortable for a bit.

2) Taking a job based off of a salary is stupid. See #1.

3) Finding something that you're passionate about and actually being able do it is exhilarating.

4) Truly loving people is hard and stressful. I am not really good at it yet.

5) Just because you're passionate about something doesn't mean you excel at it. See #4.

6) I tend to learn lessons and then immediately forget them because the situation has changed.

7) I am always surprised by my own stupidity.

Below is one of my new favorite songs. That jon foreman, he's a smart man.

ps- I personally hate the fake videos with lyrics, but there's apparently not a "real" music video out yet and I'm not intelligent enough to figure out how to shrink the video done and make it stay, so all you hear is the music....

Friday, July 2, 2010

Switchfoot - Your Love is A Song

Pretend that you don't see rows of polite white people "jamming out" in the front. And that Gospel Music Channel's logo isn't really a "g" with halo.... now, you can throughly enjoy this fantastic song.

Monday, June 21, 2010

stupid prayers

Praying is one of those things that I'm not exceptionally good at, mainly because I don't do it a whole lot. Partly because my brain works on super sonic and I am constantly going off on rabbit trails, and partly because I sometimes wonder if I'm crazy and I'm just talking to myself...

Regardless, I overall think God cares and He does some pretty insane stuff when we actually just take the time to just talk to Him.

I'm fairly confident that He wants more from me than just a basic one liner.

"Please help so and so."

"I don't remember if I turned my stove off. Please don't let my house burn down." (okay, so that was 2 lines)

"Please let that man get home safely."

"Dear Jesus, I didn't check the toilet a second time after I flushed. Please don't let there be a turd in there. It wasn't there the first time, but please don't let it magically reappear...." (have I mentioned that I'm OCD with toilets outside of my household? I only check 2 or 3 times, not like those nutjobs that check 4x....)

"Please don't let there be anybody in my shower. Please, no one in my shower." (I'm also OCD with checking any shower that I'm near. If I've been to your house, I've checked your shower for crazies. You're welcome.)

Actually, I was going to write about stupid prayers I used to pray, but after looking at this list, it appears that I'm still requesting ridiculous things... hmm... For the record, when I was much younger, I earnestly prayed that when I grew up that I would be funny. I thought my dad was really clever, I wanted to be like him. I have also prayed on multiple occasions during my high school and college years that Jesus would come back before a particularly large exam. And if He choose not to, that he would at least erase my answers and put them in the right order. You think I'm kidding. I am not. If the man can feed 5,000 dudes with fish and chips, he can make a miracle out of my lack of studying....

Somehow I bet that God actually wants to have a conversation. And sometimes even instigate one. But then I wonder why when I cry out to him in full agony over someone or something or whatever, does it feel like he doesn't always answer? Where is the big conversation then? The quiet kills. I don't think he loves it when I go thru phases of not speaking to him. If I had a guess, I would vote it pains him a little. I don't think any loving parent would get off on their kid not talking to them. But sometimes it just numbs the pain - if only for a little while.

Well, that took a turn for the downers. So, what are some stupid prayers you've prayed?

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Hold Us Together

there's no offical video for this song that I can find.... but just shut your eyes and listen.

then lay back and smile.

i love this song.

Friday, June 11, 2010

sometimes I feel like....

The sounds of rustling and clanking had reached their ears long before they entered this room. Now the Prince could see the source. Hundreds of men and women, mostly older than thirty, though there were a handful of teenagers and younger children, sat shackled on battered metal chairs. Their faces were masked by rusty helmets clamped down on their heads, with iron visors that covered their eyes. They were in neat semi-circular rows, radiating out from a small, black stage in the center point, where a light from somewhere high above beamed straight down on the only occupant of the stage.

He was a short, bent over old man, with a white beard and mostly bald scalp, a shock of white hair standing out on either side of his head, just above his ears. He wore a voluminous black velvet robe, which he constantly fiddled with and folded around his body, seemingly never comfortable with the arrangement of his limbs, or the covering of them. There was a low, grumbling hum coming from within those folds, like the drone of some ancient chant music. Beside the overstuffed chair on which he sat, a precarious stack of books, magazines, and newspapers threatened to topple over onto him. He was reading aloud.

Stephen and the Prince watched from the shadowy recesses near the entrance to the lobby. They saw no guards. No other people of any kind. Just the old man and the prisoners.

"From what I can tell, this project started - according to the time of the Lower Days - about three weeks ago. As long as he reads," Stephen whispered, "the people forget about their chains, and don't seem to mind their blindness - " Loud cheers went up from the crowd just then , as if they were watching their favorite sporting event. Some laughed. Some sat quietly, grinning.

Stephen continued. "However, once a story ends, they all begin to weep and moan, panic and scream until the storyteller begins again. This goes on, night and day, with no breaks that I that have witnesses. If they fall asleep, they sleep sitting up. On rare occasions, and on no regular schedule that I can discern, they are brought very meager provisions. New 'listeners' are added every day."

The Prince spotted Luke sitting between two elderly women. He was the only child on that side of the room, though he now looked more like a teenager than a seven-year-old. He sniggered at the current tale being told.

"I was able to speak to him briefly before he was imprisoned. He thinks he was supposed to come here," Stephen whispered. "Something he researched, he said. He believes that he was meant to come here and save these people, though he would not tell me how. I gathered he considered himself some hero-not-yet-come. But now he is just here, addicted to the stories like the others." Stephen's mouth curled the word stories, like he had bitten into a rotten orange- something meant to be good and sweet, but turned to bitter mush. "He weeps loudly between readings and I can feel how he longs for his home in the Upper Kingdom, but he can't break his chains.... then he forgets his pain once the next story begins."

"Has he ever even tried to call for help?" The Prince turned to face the messenger.

"No, he is too ashamed. Too afraid to say your name here. And most of the time, he doesn't even remember your name. The storyteller's voice strangles his thoughts and clouds his mind. I've tried to speak to him, but he doesn't hear me during the stories. And between readings, it's almost impossible to get his attention, no matter how loudly I speak." The messenger's gaze settled on Luke's visored eyes.

"The more he ages, the more he will forget about me and the Upper Kingdom. Now is the time to rescue him, before it's too late." The Prince watched the storyteller turning one of the last few pages of the book that was in his hand. "When the story ends, do all that you can to delay the storyteller from beginning the next book."

"Your commands are my delight!" Stephen dashed toward the storyteller, shouting the battle cry of the messengers: "For the King and his Prince!" The storyteller had just opened his mouth to say "The End" when Stephen reached the stage. Unseen, the messenger thrust his golden sword entirely through the giant pile of books and papers waiting to be read.

A terrible chaos filled the giant chamber. The prisoners wept and yelled in agony, without the distraction of a story. The Prince rushed toward Luke, unlatched the heavy helmet, and dropped it to the ground with a clank. Luke blinked his eyes, squinting at the brightness of the light. As his eyes adjusted, he burst into tears before the face of the Prince.

"Say the word, Luke! Say the word!" pleaded the Prince, turning Luke's head toward him.

Luke wept uncontrollably, unable to speak through his tears.

Puzzled and increasingly frustrated, the old storyteller clawed at the stack of books, trying to retrieve just one.

"Luke!" The Prince's tone grew more urgent.

"I... I... I'm sorry!... I'm sorry," Luke spluttered, shutting his eyes tight.

The Prince leaned close to the boy, his mouth just by his ear. "Say the word," he said, in a voice that only Luke could hear.

Luke's sobs slowed. He mustered a deep breath. "Help me, my.... Prince!"

His shackles broke loose.


excerpt taken from (probably illegally) between two kingdoms by: joe boyd

Sunday, June 6, 2010

U2 - Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own (Acoustic Couch Mix)

Didn't remember that I had this song saved to my computer until the other day. Forgot how good it was.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Anberlin - Feel Good Drag

The Zone used to play a lot of Anberlin. They have a great sound. One of my fav songs lately. They play it at least a couple times a day.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

running

so I ran today. and by ran, I of course mean that I jogged. and by jogged, I of course mean that I walked 3/4 and jogged the other 1/4. but hey, it was still 1.3 miles more than I did yesterday. or ever.

side note: it's hard to run/jog/walk with the dog when he stops on a dime to smell grass/sidewalk/poo/garbage/chocolate/smashedcans/fences/cars/whateverelse

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Several years ago I was one of group of rotating emcees at a local music venue. I've always been a very outgoing person, but this volunteer position sent me into a downward spiral. I began experiencing what felt like mini panic attacks or just a heavy dose of anxiety, even if I wasn't at the venue. The worst time was about 2 or 3years ago I broke down at Cyclones game for absolutely no reason. It just got too loud and there were too many people.

Eventually I quit the emceeing gig and it helped calm the attacks. Every once in a blue moon, they'll sneak back up on me. I was so looking forward to tonight. As soon as a I started looking up the stairs to go to my seat, it hit me. Thought I was going to get sick for the 1st half of the game. I had trouble looking backwards. There were a lot of people and a lot of noise. It's so insanely frustrating though. When the anxiety hits, the anger follows. Maybe because I feel like I've lost control of the situation???? I have no desire to speak with anyone. I just want to leave. Or crawl out of my skin.

I hate feeling this way.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Lead Me - Sanctus Real

Music has always played a huge role in my life. It impacts me in ways that simply nothing else can. Over the past year or two, I feel like I've really begun to connect with the music of Sanctus Real. Below is their latest single, Lead Me and some other rocking tunes. Yeah, I just said 'rocking tunes'. Sue me.







Monday, May 3, 2010

pushing forward

I've never played football, but I've watched enough movies to see players practicing with blocking dummies (at least, I think that's what they're called). No matter how hard they run, the blocker's going to be there to slow them down. Obviously, it's intended to help them reach the goal line on game day, but it looks hard. It probably hurts a little when they slam into it during practices. The sheer strength of the blocker might knock them down a little bit. I would imagine that it's a bit of a dance of two steps forward and one step back.

Most days I feel like everyone else's marriage is perfect. They may have a tiff over minor details, but the husbands are respectful, the wives are beautiful and the children are nearly perfect. At least I think that sums up most of my friends lives. Maybe it's just due to my immaturity, but I feel like I am always hitting the dummy. There's always a blocker in my way of the goal line. It's a lot of hard work. I feel like I cannot compete with anybody else's wife/life. Not that I really should be, but if God lined up the Great Wives of the last three years, I would be dead last. I think I just embarrass my husband, my friends and myself at lot. To be honest, I'm not even sure why he sticks with me. I can't imagine sharing half of my crap with anyone else. He is gentle and loving and honestly has my best intentions at heart. He may not like a lot of things that I do, but he still loves me. Which seems overly graceful. When the best that I can offer is a dirty oyster, he finds the pearl.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Friends vs Community

Tonight over a stack of amazing cheese fries, Isaac discussed the feature film he's planning on shooting this summer. Which, by the way, can I just say how proud I am of him for stepping out and tackling this head on? My baby's got guts.

Anyway, Isaac was discussing characters and how part of the conflict in movies is that the main characters typically express their wants, but rarely do their wants match what their true needs are. They may be connected, but rarely are they the same.

I believe the same is true in real life. The things that I thought were important, or what I thought I wanted, aren't what I need. It's a frustrating process learning the difference.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

a true question

Tonight at work, one of the individual's family visited and brought pizza for everyone. Super generous. Had a nice time meeting with and just getting to know them and watch the individual interact with their family.

At the end of the evening, the family asked me what my background was with working with individuals with special needs and why I wanted to get into the field. I could tell by the looks on their faces that my answers weren't neccesarily what they were hoping to hear. I don't have a background in nursing. I didn't go to school for this. I've had limited training before I got hired and I don't have professional experience in this field. I just have a heart for working with individuals with special needs. I feel like God has called me to work with them full time. And I realize that just 'enjoying working them' is not neccesarily a comforting answer to a family. This is their flesh and blood that I am in charge of taking care of. They're paying a lot of money for people to guide them and provide adequate staff.

I get why they didn't seem thrilled I was there.

gettin' there

I don't see it, but I'm down 22 lbs. but that still counts, right? If I worked harder at it, I'd lose more, but I've been lax for a while.

Since I met my first real "goal" at 20lb, I went to Bath and Body works to get these special gloves that I've been wanting for forever..... They were sold out. argh. The rep suggested that I get the socks instead. I looked at the price - $25. Um, no. They're just socks.

I started getting stressed out, so I ended up buying lotion from the Stress Free line. That made me happy. And then I bought a few other things. I had a bunch of coupons, so that dramatically reduced my final price. Sweetness.

I am tired. Had a lot going on lately. I miss my friends. I don't really ever have a day off anymore and this bums me out.

The dog pooped inside 2x today. TWICE! I'm scheduling his neutering soon. Payback. not that neutering and pooping even have a common link....

This is a ridiculous post.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Meaningful Words

I got an Easter card in the mail today from my Prom buddy, David and his mom Kathy.


Then I read this little note from David's mom, Kathy. David's 41. I almost cried.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Happy Memories

I had to find my college diploma today for work, but while searching thru old boxes at my parent's house, I unearthed some happy memories.The above is a pic of me and my Great Grandpa Johnson.



The black and white pic is of my Grandpa Wilder. I never really knew him, but he's still important to my dad. I found out he was only 66 when he died. My dad's 58. Granted, he had a lot of health problems, but it's interesting.


My dad is a really clever dude. I found this e-mail from my freshman year of college. He wrote me a note and then ended with a silly poem. Sometimes I try and write a little ditty for peeps I adore, but it all comes back to my dad. Who I adore.


This one was sent in April of 1999. It was nearing finals time again. Dad liked to update me on my Mom, my brother John and the family dog, Lucy.



This one made me laugh out loud. My brother received it from Conner Middle School. It might be my favorite.

























Saturday, March 27, 2010

quicksand

I am down 17lbs. It's not much, but I'm content with it. Other than my Zumba on Saturdays, I haven't been working out the past 3 weeks or so. However, I did recently learn that Forest Park will reimburse you $150 in November if you join certain gyms. That basically makes joining and maintaining a 12 month membership at Fitworks closer to $105 - just joining is flippn expensive - rather than $255. So I think I'll be joining next week.

Isaac doesn't really weigh himself as much as I do, but he looks REALLY good. I would guess he's lost 20-30lbs. His shirts are fitting looser and his body shape is more defined. I loved the way he looked before, but I'm happy he's healthier and in better shape. It's nice trying to eat better with someone you love.

During the past week I've had lunch/dinner with 3 separate friends. I've known some of them for a decade, and some just for a few short years. It is so refreshing being honest with people you love dearly.

Beginning April 1st, I will be going from full time at Lynx to just working Wednesdays and Fridays. Because of this change, I needed to find another part time position. Last Monday I found out that I got hired on at LADD (Living Arrangements for Developmentally Disabled). I will be working there M, Tu, Th, Sat and possibly Wed nights. This is all very exciting. I will be assisting individuals with their daily routine and helping them become more independent - which is just AWESOME. The only possible downside is that I'll be working second shift, so I won't see my small group anymore or my Saturday night church friends. This means I will have to GET UP and go to church on Sundays now. omg. What will I ever do? : ) Because Sundays will be my only day off, I can see that this might lead into a slippery slope of not going to church. Pure laziness.

The second shift thing is kinda of a blessing and a curse. Because of my schedule, I won't see any of my friends anymore. While this stinks, it also gives me the slightest twinge of relief. Not going to small group anymore means that I can leave relationships that I have broken lying where they may. It means not really having to be accountable to others about this stupid FREE* series or any other series in the future. It means not pushing through. It's not that I won't be dealing with the issues that this series brought up anymore, it's just that I won't have my community around me to support/quiz me about what I mean when I say x,y,z. Which, as a side note, I've recently realized that I don't always know why I say what I say. I have trouble verbalizing exactly what I mean. I just say how I feel. Or I'll just get upset when I'm trying to say something. It's all VERY frustrating and it makes me want to disappear or puke. Or both.

So in a sense, I will be disappearing for a while. It will have it's ups and downs, depending on what my mood is. It's ironic. I've come to realize that community is very important - I've seen family/friends who do not have community around them and it's unhealthy - but community is HARD. It is hard to live out life in front of others. I'm somewhat wondering if me leaving life as I know it for a while will be a relief to others. By not having to put up with my ridiculous insecurities and annoyances, I'm hoping/believing that this will actually strengthen my marriage and my relationships. I feel like Isaac's been annoyed/irritated with me for a long stretch. Perhaps he just needs a break. Perhaps I overwhelm him. I'm pretty needy.

I did the prayer experience at Crossroads on Thursday night with my small group. For some of my friends this was very meaningful. One of my friends has the promises from God taped to her refrigerator. Others have just verbalized that they either are free or are getting there. Am I the only one stuck in the mud here? One of my friends said that he thought I was further along than before. I'm about 99% positive he said that to get me off the phone. Shallow jerkface. jk...... But I don't see it. I went to the prayer experience, mainly because I had to or felt like I would be judged if not.... Anyway, I felt God saying some stuff to me there... some I have forgotten already. Most I think I blocked out. I have a very difficult time taking complements, in the truest since of the form from people, let alone God. I fully believe God can move mountains in other peoples lives and I have faith that He wants the best for others... And I want to help others get there.... But I don't really believe that for myself. It seems foolish that God would make ME promises. Or care. There are some times when I KNOW that God has spoken to me - mostly in a "you need to do this" form. I get that. I can be on a mission. I can handle "duties". But if it's just one on one with Jesus, that seems foreign and ridiculous. I don't have a good prayer time probably because I don't care to listen. I have trouble distinguishing between my voice and God's. Especially when it comes to him promising me things. I lack faith most days. And to be quite honest, I'm not sure that I really want to be free. Because although I hate where I'm at, moving forward would prove to be more painful and would require believing that God doesn't want me to stay put. That he's happy with the amount of baggage I'm carrying. To believe that I might be weary and stooped over from the weight of my own sin and selfishness.... I just remembered that he showed/visualized someone running while I was in the prayer experience. I think I'm supposed to not stop running. To run hard and fast. If I shut my eyes, I could/can hear the sounds of the snapping twigs and brush and the city sounds. I am to run a very long distance. I wrote on the wall during one of the prayer stations that I was not ready to give up. But I am tired and I am very close to just throwing in the towel and allowing myself to be swallowed by the quicksand I have stumbled into.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

random crap

13lbs down

snl last night was really funny

i saw the biggest possum in our backyard today. made me nervous.

my dog is snoring. there's something peaceful about when he sleeps next to me.

isaac and I found the coolest hole in the wall restaurant this morning. my veggie omelet was scrumtis. brotherton's restaurant in hamilton - it's pretty sweet.

i can't keep me eyes open any more

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Free Q City Players Show Friday!

The always hilarious (well, almost always) Q City Players Improv Comedy Troupe will be performing at Taza Coffeehouse in Clifton this Friday.

Here's the skinny:

when: this friday (I just told you that!) February 19th
time: 9-11pm
cost: $5 at the door UNLESS you bring a personal hygiene item or canned food good, then you get in FREE
ideas on what to bring: shampoo, conditioner, laundry detergent, soap, toothbrushes, toothpaste, combs, hairbrushes, canned meats, canned vegetables, etc

All donated items will go to The Healing Center in Springdale. It's a very cool place that offers a number of services to the people of Cincinnati.

show up early - doors open at 8:20pm. It's street parking (although you can park across the street in UC's parking lot, I think it's like $5-10. Also, Taza makes wonderful drinks and healthy snack options. You don't want to miss it!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

bad company

Until 2 weeks ago, I hadn't been to the dentist in somewhere between 5-10 years. I figured I was good, since my dad has really good teeth and he never goes. Plus, I had never a cavity. Turns out, waiting a decade between dentist trips isn't such a hot idea. I had 4 cavities and apparently, my 4x a year flossing habits didn't quite cut it. I ended up with some crappy gingivitis and periodontal disease. Which the later is code for Eastern Kentucky. It's basically a result of never flossing and your gums get hacked off and eventually deteriorate, causing tooth loss. I floss almost everyday now.

Anyway, all that to say, the dentist experience got me thinking. If I had been jacking my mouth up this long and never realizing it, what was I doing to the rest of my body? I began figuring out how much weight I needed to lose to be "healthy". It's right around 100lbs. WHAT???!?!?!?!? bleep, bleep, bleeeeeep.

I doubt I'll ever lose 100lbs, but I need to lose weight regardless. and a LOT of it. I would have to lose 40lbs just to get to the weight I was when I got married, which was just a mere 2 1/2 years ago. And I was fat then too. ugh.

So on the 3rd of February, I began eating better. Not amazing. But better. And I have dramatically lessened the amount of soda intake I was consuming. And overall, lessened the amount of calories I'm having been shoveling down my throat. And I started working out. Not everyday. But some. And I started Zumba classes yesterday. And as of this morning, I have lost 6lbs. Which, in the grand scheme of things, is like losing the weight of one of my earlobes or something. But 6lbs is still 6lbs. Just 94 more to go.... haha.

And for the first time ever, Isaac and I are on the same page. We're trying to lose weight together, eating better and staying positive. This has been VERY helpful.

The challenge will be (and will always be) that I am an emotional eater. I eat when I'm sad, when I'm happy, when I'm bored, when I'm nervous and I really eat when I'm depressed. And parties - watch out. A celebration is not a celebration to me without a bunch of food being involved. When I started talking about losing weight to Isaac, I told him that when I lost 50lbs, my treat to myself would be to buy some new glasses. He asked me what my "treat" would be for the first 5lbs or 10lbs... And I bit back with "probably a cheeseburger". I honestly do not know how to celebrate without food. And in the past several days, I have been going back and forth between "when" I lose x amount of weight and "if" I lose x amount of weight. Which are 2 totally different things. The if's are what's going to bring me down.

So, what are some good ways to "celebrate" or "treat" yourself for reaching small goals?

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

I Want To Be A Clone

Back in the mid 1990's a friend in band class introduced me to the music of Steve Taylor. Quirky, eccentric, intelligent, Steve Taylor. His tongue-in-cheek approach to life and the truth of Christ blended in such a fashion that it shaped the way that I thought about not only Christian music, but God as well. Steve would eventually go on to produce numerous records and music videos (Sixpence None the Richer, Newboys, Guardian, Rich Mullins). He also formed the short lived Squint Entertainment and co-wrote and directed The Second Chance (which starred Michael W. Smith).

And while I have been a bad girl for not watching his movie, some of his songs have stuck with me since the day I bought his cassette tape at Family Christian Store. Somewhat ironic, since several of his albums were pulled from stores like that.... But songs like Jesus Is For Losers and The Finish Line and Cash Cow (which has to be one of the weirdest and funniest videos out there) are life changing to me. When I'm having a crap sappy day, I think of The Finish Line and how the Christian life is not some happy go lucky day trip. It gets hard, and you fall down, but you have to get back up. As the apostle Paul wrote, "I don't know about you, but I'm running hard for the finish line. I'm giving it everything I've got. No sloppy living for me! I'm staying alert and in top condition. I'm not going to get caught napping, telling everyone else all about it and then missing out myself." - 1 Corinthians 9:26-27 The Message

While his music is out of print, you can of course, always purchase it on ebay. I would suggest purchasing both Liver and Squint. Click here to watch/listen to a 1994 rendition of The Finish Line at Cornerstone. And remember to run hard in the race. Don't give up. He didn't come for the well, he came for the sick and the broken hearted. The losers. You and me.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

My head is not really where my heart is. I think.

Sorry it's been forever since my last post. Not that anybody's been chomping at the bit for my next post. haha.

I have no idea why I write "haha" after everything. haha. (that was just for emphasis)

I'm a happy person for the most part, so please don't read this and think I'm a party pooper. This is just where my head is today, so bear with me. Actually, I'll follow every annoyance with a good thing.

I think I cut my gum on some mountain trail mix last Friday. It still hurts. I think it might be infected. And then tonight before church, my hand slipped and hit my jaw with a force. My bottom teeth smashed into my top teeth with part of my tongue somewhere in the middle. Now my whole right side of my mouth is annoyed and hurting.

Good thing I made a dentist appointment for Tuesday morning. It'll be the first time I've been to the dentist in about 5-10 yrs. It's also at 6:45am. Yes, I said AM.

The Vineyard's been switching the services around for the past 5 weeks. Basically, the teaching's in the beginning, and the worship musics at the end. I was really hoping that by the end of the 5 weeks, I would be getting used to the changes. I think this was week 5. I'm not sure if they're sticking with the change or not. Regardless, it's been hard for me. Wha. I know, right? But seriously, I can't stay focused to save my life. I don't have the time mentally to prepare for a video that has substance (Mardy) and then straight into teaching. I can stay focused for about 3-5 minutes at a time. Which, is weird. And then we go into music and I don't feel like I'm really into the music, because I really wasn't at all into the teaching. It doesn't transition for me. I just feel like I've been going to church lately, just to go to church. I don't feel like I've been getting anything out of it. And that's my deal, not the teachers. It's just frustrating. I leave the service without understanding what was being taught. I probably just need to catch up online a bunch. But it's also got me thinking. How long has it taken me in the past to "get into worship?" Isn't the music just as important as the teaching? Maybe, I don't know. It's just weird to me, that people are still talking when the teacher is speaking, people are still getting up and some are actually standing up to take off their coats. While Joe or Dave are talking. It's odd. I feel like people aren't mentally or physically prepared either. Not everybody, just a some. I'm just annoyed I'm not soaking in much. I'm just going to go for David and Kathy at this point.

Regardless if I'm not getting church, I've heard that lots of people are really happy with the changes. And honestly, that's really cool. And above all, I'm just happy that I go to a church that's willing to change things up a bit and try new things. A lot of places wouldn't dare. VCC is pretty dang cool overall. And I'm happy to call it home.

I did have a revelation tonight... about 4 years ago, I stopped going to the church I had been attending and kinda quit going anywhere. I'd had my fill of being burned my crappy churches and leadership. Eventually, I started visiting the Vineyard. Most times, I never came on time. I figured if anybody was going to complain about it, I'd just leave. Honestly, I was just testing the waters with VCC. They claimed to be a safe place and I had known some friends who went there for some healing time after being burned by a church. I wanted to know if what they said was true. Was VCC different? Sometimes, I got there so late, Dave was already 1/2 thru his sermon. Eventually, I started coming a little earlier and earlier. It took me a looong time, but eventually I realized that there is no perfect church. But VCCers seemed to be trying, so I thought that was good and I'd at least be willing to try them out. And about 2 years into me trying out VCC, I decided I'd start volunteering. This would be my home.

Meanwhile, I had been involved in a small group with a group of good friends. In the end, that small group didn't work out for me. Long story, but I got a bad taste in my mouth of what a small group was and should be and who you should be in one with. Fastforward a couple of years.... I've now been in a small group for a year. Most of my very favorite people are in that group. I'd rather be a small group with a random group of people than my friends. That seems safer to me. That way, in case the sm didn't work out, I still had my friends. wussy way of thinking, but whatever. And lately, I've been thinking that maybe they don't like me in small group as much as I'm nervous to be there. I got all emotional and honest on Thursday and that was embarassing. I think I've cried in front my small group friends like, 3x already. That's stupid. And probably really annoying to them. It just feeds in my s.m. group fears. Anyway, back to the revelation tonight.... I realized that while there is no perfect church, there's also no perfect small group. Why it took me so long to realize that, I have no idea. So I'm going to try and work on not freaking out so much. And just keep loving the people who I already adore. and to hash things out theologically. And to love and serve the ones around us as Christ would. Actually sounds kinda of exciting, doesn't it?

Honestly, I think this post was more for me than it was for you. If you even made it this far, I'm really impressed. And you're really bored : )