"only You can make every new day seem so new" ~Five Iron Frenzy

Friday, September 28, 2012

"Life Moves Pretty Fast..."

"...if you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." - Ferris Bueller's Day Off

Life has been moving quite fast lately.
We moved in 18 days ago and still have boxes to unpack! 
My job has been going fairly well, I've been enjoying working on the sales-floor for a change, as compared to cashiering (which I've done a couple times before).
Unfortunately I haven't had the chance to sub yet. Between moving, working a couple school days a week, and having come down with a bad cold, there just has not been much of an opportunity.

The launch of the church went pretty well. I'm looking forward to seeing it grow more, as we continue to do some more outreach in the community.

Last Sunday was Bethany's Shower. I worked in the nursery for the first church service (you should also note that I worked until 11pm Saturday night, got home, frosted a cake, then got about 3 hours of sleep before having to head to church), drove to Three Rivers, hosted the shower (which went very well!), hung out with my parents, then headed to my sister's house for the night. This other sister of mine, Kathie, (not to be confused with the other sister, Bethany, who is getting married) is in beauty school, and needed someone to practice doing a manicure on. She did really well, for being only a few weeks into beauty school! The next day, before heading home, I went to visit her at school and we went out to lunch together.

*Pause for a deep breath*

Then, when I finally got home, I crashed. The next day, we went down to Adam's parents to return their van (which his mom very generously let me borrow to go to Three Rivers). I also had an appointment with a seamstress to get my bridesmaid dress altered - for very inexpensively by someone Adam's mom knows/has used before.

Due to my lack of sleep, and madly running around like a crazy person, I have now found myself with a bad cold and wanting to do nothing by sleep. 

But work, I must. And life does not stop or slow down just because you have a cold.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Busy as a Bee

So it's been a little while...

I think we can all agree that all my wonderfully intended New Year's Resolutions that I began the year with are pretty much shot to Hell...

Ah well, it happens.
Here's how life's been going:

First of all, Adam and I are moving on September 10th! (a Monday? ...not an ideal day to move...) We're staying at the same apartment complex, we're just moving to a smaller apartment to help make a little room in our monthly budget. BTW, this smaller apartment happens to be updated. New appliances, and no more icky cupboards, floors, and counters! Whoot!

And after spending months looking for a job, I've finally landed one at Target! This is kind of bittersweet. I was really hoping to get a job in education...since, you know, I spent 5 years and thousands upon thousands of dollars to get my degree in that area. Not to mention the fact that I've wanted to teach since I was 8 years old, and it's all I've ever wanted to do with my life. Be that as it may, hard as I may have tried, apparently it's just not my time yet. I am trying very hard to be patient. My new job at Target is only part time, so I will still be able to substitute teach on the days I don't work there. Apart from that, I am rather excited for this new job. Heck, it'll give me something to do during the day! Plus, I'm working at pretty much my favorite store...I can't complain too much.

On top of beginning a new job and moving in the near future, my sister decided this was a good time to get married. ;) Bethany only got engaged a couple/few weeks ago, but she and her fiance have decided that they don't want to wait long to get married. So they set the date. For October 21st. Aaahh! So little time, so much to do! I'm planning her shower, I've got my dress, but it needs to be fitted... Oh my.

Lastly, Adam and I have joined a church...sort of. There is a church in Grandville (and another in Richland) called Radiant. They've sent out a group of people to the Ypsilanti/Ann Arbor area to start another Radiant Church. Right now, they're in the planning period. We meet at the pastor's house Sunday nights, the pastor shares a word and we go over some plans for the launch of the church. We also meet Wednesday nights for a little prayer and worship. It has been such a blessing teaming up with these people, they are all pretty much amazing. The church launches on September 16th, and will be held at the Rave theater. Adam will be helping out with the sound/lighting/tech and also is talking them through some security procedures. I'll be helping out with children's ministry and wherever else I'm needed.

So that is my busy, busy life right now. Being unemployed, my life has been so uneventful up until now. I've wasted days away laying on the couch, watching "How I Met Your Mother" all day and swallowing whole books in one sitting. In a couple short weeks, my life has become unbelievably busy. I'm now learning a new job, helping start a church, the school year/subbing will begin again soon, I'm moving in a few weeks, and I'm preparing for my sister's wedding. Eek!

Despite the chaos, I hope you hear from me much more often now. I will have many more stories to tell, and blogging will help me unwind.

So...how have you all been?


...I haven't felt too bad about not blogging, because, like, no one has been blogging...

(PS-look how tiny Squirt was a year ago! He's so much bigger now...)

Monday, July 9, 2012


This is Shell
(Sheldon Cooper Hoskins)

He was a Red Ear Slider that I adopted June 16th. He was only with us a little while, but what a blessing! He brought so much joy into our lives.

Now we have lost him. This morning, while drinking my coffee, I looked over to his tank to play "where's Shell?" when I saw him stuck to the bottom of the filter. He wasn't moving.

I cannot believe it was only a few weeks that we had him, it seems much longer. You may laugh or shake your head at me for grieving the loss of a little turtle. But let me say this. When you have a pet that brings such joy into your life, that makes you laugh just by watching him, the loss will never be easy. Especially when you could hold him in your  hands with all the tenderness of a parent.

There's nothing I can say on loss or grieving that hasn't been said before, and more eloquently than I ever could. ... And about a loss more deeply than I've ever felt.

So since a picture's worth a thousand words...

...just a size comparison (the only way we could get Squirt to hold still was by "turtling" him)

If a single picture's worth a thousand words, I wonder what a video's worth?
Introducing Squirt to Shell. 
Squirt wasn't sure what to make of Shell and was kind of scared of him. Shell's just chillin' without a care in the world.
(ps-sorry for all the debris in the way ... Squirt enjoys uprooting his plants, and we had just fed him).

RIP baby Shell
I thank God for bringing us such joy through you in your so very brief life here. 
We will miss you.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Random Favorites

You know what I really enjoy? Random things. So this is going to be a blog about some of my favorite "random things" - at least what I deem to be ... random ... for the different categories. 

Favorite Movie - Peggy Sue Got Married (1986).  This is also one of my mom's favorite movies - I remember watching it with her as a little girl.  It co-stars a young Kathleen Turner and a young Nicholas Cage.  It also features a young Jim Carrey.  When the movie begins, Peggy Sue (Turner) is arriving at her dreaded 25th class reunion.  She is in the middle of divorce with her husband (and high school sweetheart), Charlie (Cage).  During the reunion, she passes out and wakes up in 1960 - during her last months in high school.  She struggles between trying to push her then boyfriend, Charlie, away - not wanting to "make the same mistake twice" - and falling in love with him all over again.  It is a drama (in it's own 1980's, fairly cheesy, way), but it is also a comedy.  I love watching it because it makes me feel nostalgic toward my own childhood and a time period that I always wished I lived in (which is quite impossible since my mother was born in 1960...).  I also watch it because it does make me laugh - a lot.  I highly recommend seeing it - even just once.  It's on Netflix instant play right now, so if you have Netflix - there are no excuses for not watching it. :)

Favorite Food - toast.  I don't know what it is about toasted bread, but I love it.  I even find myself craving it sometimes.  I've found that my new favorite way to eat my homemade bread is by toasting it (lightly) and topping it with peanut butter.  The peanut butter gets all warm and melts - it's just a delightful experience.  Even just plain 'ole store-bought bread toasted with butter (or margarine) is one of my favorite snacks.  Toast can also make me feel nostalgic for Ireland.  Pretty much every morning during that trip, I'd have toast with butter and jam and tea for breakfast.  Sometimes when I really miss Ireland, I'll make myself a cup of tea with toast and jam.

Favorite band - The Mama's and The Papa's.  I've been adding more and more of their music to my Spotify playlist ("Folksy Music") lately.  I grew up with parents - especially my dad - who listened to oldies and folk music.  There's just something about this band's harmonies and overall sound that I just love and that ... makes my heart happy.  They just don't make music that sounds like this anymore.  It's always a delightful experience.  I've been in quite the folk-music-mood lately.  

Favorite book - oh this is a tough one.  What do I go with? One of my favorite children's stories (Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland)?  A favorite obscure book by a well-known author (The Great Divorce - CS Lewis, Persuasion - Austen)?  Or maybe The Princess Bride ... I think I'll go with a book from my favorite category - Books I Had to Read for a Brent Cline Class That I Ended Up Loving.
Into the Wild - Jon Krakauer.  I absolutely love this book.  It's a creative non-fiction story about a young man who left behind everyone and everything and was determined to "live off the land."  Since you'll find this out in the very first chapter anyway, I'll go ahead and tell you - he ends up dying a slightly mysterious death in the Alaskan wild.  You may have seen the movie - which was fairly accurate (if I 'm remembering correctly) - but I do highly recommend reading the book.  It's actually a lot more intriguing than I just made it sound.  The young man - Chris McCandless - meets some very interesting people along the way.  I think it was the fact this this was a true story - about a true person - that pulled me in so much.  By the way, feel free to skip the couple chapters in the middle where the author goes off on a spiel about his own adventures - I always do. :)  

Well this has been a fairly wordy post!  So what are some of your random favorites? What are some things that you love and thoroughly enjoy that are a little ... unconventional?  Or maybe just plain weird to some people?

PS - I apologize for the overuse of the word random - I was hard pressed to find a suitable synonym...

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Having Fun With The Hubby

Warning: this will be a fairly wordy post. Adam had Wednesday and Thursday off this week, and we packed a whole lot of fun into those two days.

On Wednesday, we went to see Titanic in 3D IMAX. It was pretty much amazing. I was so excited just to be able to see it on the big screen again. It originally came out when I was 11. It was the first movie I saw multiple times in the theater. It also resulted in my first celebrity crush - Leonardo DiCaprio, of course. Anyway, they did a truly fantastic job on the 3D. I was a little worried after seeing Lion King in 3D, which was horribly disappointing. But I highly recommend seeing Titanic 3D - IMAX too, if you can. 

After the movie, we went to Applebee's for half-price appetizers, then went to Meijer. All of their Tigers stuff was on sale, so Adam got a shirt and I got a hoodie. I also picked out dark blue and orange nail polish - to complete my look.

Thursday was Opening Day and the Tigers were at home. We didn't have tickets for the game (the cheapest ones online were $95). But we wanted to go to downtown Detroit and celebrate anyway. We headed out at about 8:30am. We met up with some of Adam's cousins for the first couple hours and enjoyed a burger at Nemo's (the most inexplicably delicious burger ever). It was rather overcast and chilly outside, but we still had fun. When it came time for the game to start, we parted ways - since they had tickets (jealous). 

We took a stroll around Comerica Park, and were able to find a little park across the street where a local radio station had a big screen TV set up and there were some food vendors. I got an elephant ear (LOVE), Adam got a couple corn dogs, and we shared some chili cheese fries - healthy, huh? Then we sat down in the grass to enjoy the game and our food. 

The sun came out just enough to keep us warm - and sunburn our faces. The Tigers won (no thanks to Valverde), making the day complete.

Since it was an early game (1pm). The day was still young when it was finished. On our way back to our car, Adam jokingly suggested going to Windsor. I replied, "okay, let's do it!" So we ran home (um...not literally), got changed, grabbed our passports, and headed back. (Side note: it's so nice living this close to Detroit, if only for the convenience of going to Tigers games.) 

We went to Caesar's Casino in Windsor. It was quite a lot of fun. I had never been to a casino before. If you've never been to one, I'd recommend going. You don't have to spend much money to have fun - there's plenty of penny, nickel, and dime "slot machines" to keep you entertained. We even went to a bar in the casino that had "multi-poker" game machines at each seat. So we got a couple rum and cokes, and played poker.  Deuces Wild was my game of choice.

(Adam playing poker)

On our way back, we stopped in Detroit for dinner. By the time we finally got home, it was only about 10:30, but I was sunburnt and exhausted, so I went straight to bed. The next day, my face hurt, my legs ached, and I was incurably tired all day - so I spent it on the couch. 

I love that exhausted feeling - when you've spent a day so full, with so much fun packed in, that you're practically immobile the next day. All I can say is that Thursday was pretty much an amazing all-day date with the hubby. It's been a while since we've had one of those - with just the two of us - and it was a blast.

Yesterday = me doing nothing, so today = cleaning/cooking day - especially since tomorrow is Easter, and - company or not - I like having my home clean on a holiday. It is now time to get off my butt and get some stuff done.

Happy Easter, everyone!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Books Books Books

New Year's Resolution #4

Read at least one new book every month

As much as I love reading new books, the temptation to reread old favorites can get pretty strong. I was able to squeeze in Harry Potter in February, since I finished The Hunger Games so quickly (side note: movie was awesome). Then I went on to read Walden by Thoreau - which made me want swear off modern culture and go live in the woods. I finished that about a week or so ago, and was in a panic because (for some reason) I thought it was my February read, and that I was therefore behind. 

So I continued on to Little Women (Louisa May Alcott). I loved the movie when I was younger (1994 version), and I vaguely remember my mom reading us the first couple chapters once. It's always been on my bucket list of books to read, and it was free on my Kindle, so I figured now was the time. 

I knew I liked the story, but I wasn't intending to fall deeply in love with this book. Even though I'd seen the movie (a fairly faithful adaption), and therefore knew what was coming, I still teared up a dozen times or so, and cried like a baby once or twice. It's not that the book is altogether sad, it's just that it is very touching and a very well-written story. 

I used to have one book that I went to any time my soul needed to be uplifted, and that was The Hiding Place (Corrie ten Boom). I now have two books to choose from. There is something about Little Women that is very uplifting and makes me want to be a better person. Throughout the books, the four sisters continually struggle to better themselves - to control and fix their faults, to become more humble, generous, selfless, and caring of everyone around them. It really inspired me to be a better version of myself.

It is definitely a book that I recommend to everyone (especially girls - ages 5 to 95). Someday, if I have a daughter or two, I plan on reading this book to her/them. I also plan on reading this book on a regular basis from now on.

Anyway, now that I've realized that I am not behind, and have just finished my April book, I plan to read through The Hunger Games again. Come on, you didn't actually think I could just read those books once, did you? I need a second look! The first time I read Harry Potter, once I finished the last page of the last book, I immediately started on the first again. With stories like these (especially HP), there is no way I can pick up everything the first time around. I want to know the stories inside and out, to notice every detail, and to really understand them.


This year, I've read:

January - Out of Oz (the final book in The Wicked Years series) - Gregory Maguire

February - The Hunger Games - Suzanne Collins

(Harry Potter)

March - Walden - Henry David Thoreau

April (finished ahead of time) - Little Women - Louisa May Alcott

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Okay, I know I -just- posted, but I wanted to do something for St. Patrick's Day.
No, I am not Irish - and will not falsely claim to be so - but I do truly love Ireland.
I was able to visit a couple years ago. It was a trip for school, and I had signed up for the "England/Ireland" trip because I really wanted to visit England and thought ...that other place... might be fun too. Aaaand I ended up really falling in love with Ireland.

So in my reminiscence, I'll share a few of my favorite photos/moments in Ireland.

The Giant's Causeway. 
Unfortunately, this is the best picture I have of it - and there's a random guy sitting there...
If you really want to see its beauty, just do a google-image search. I'm sure some pretty fantastic pictures will come up...

Derry Ireland. These cannons were along this part of the city's (old) wall. They were also very hot on this sunny day. As we were walking along we passed a group of young ladies, one who was preparing to sit down on the cannon (in a very short skirt) - she jumped up, screamed, and exclaimed "I BURNED ME BUM!" We did our best to stay composed until we were out of view...


The Cliff's of Moher
...does this remind anyone else of "The Cliffs of Insanity"?

And lastly, Dublin - of course.

A Happy St. Patrick's Day to everyone - especially my friends who are fortunate enough to be Irish :)