Tuesday, December 29, 2009

2009: The year I began growing up.

I always get a little nostalgic and pensive at the end of the year.  Sorry...because, as you can tell this little series of blogs reflect that.

As I look back on the year I realize it has been one of my favorites.  Although there were definitely some rough spots, I had many more smooth ones.  I learned SO much about myself, just by simply being honest. I believe that this year I have started growing up...I have started to come into my own.

Seasons of Lessons:

Winter - Compromising is never good when you compromise who you are and how you feel.

Spring- Be happy with your choices.  We make mistakes, but what we learn from them defines us.  Don't Settle.

Summer - Dancing = joy in motion.  Being a good friend isn't being a passive friend.

Fall - Working hard pays off.  I am not a baker, but a good "cook".  We all need breaks every once in awhile - and they don't have to be big.  I LOVE speech pathology.  It's ok that I don't want to work for the church, I am pretty sure God still loves me.

So goodbye 2009.  It was nice knowin' ya.  Hello 2010, I hope we can be friends.

Monday, December 28, 2009

2009: my year in books

This past year I rekindled my love of reading.  I have always loved reading, but I seemed to only indulge myself during breaks from school.  This year I decided to keep a book journal, and as I look back on this year, I was able to keep the habit going even when studying.

This year I wasn't able to physically travel the world, but my reading took me to many different countries, time periods, perspectives, and worlds.  This is my year in books.

January - Catcher in the Rye (loved it)
February - This Boy's Life, a memoir
                 The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe (Loved it! Can you believe I had never read it?!?)
                1984  (thoroughly enjoyed)
March - The Genesis Code (hated it)
              Prince Caspian
              Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight  (tragic, yet beautiful)
May - Uncle Tom's Cabin (Adored it!)
          Hands of My Father (memoir of a boy growing up with deaf parents - recommended if interested)
June - The Three Musketeers (Possibly favorite book of the year - fun summer read)
July - Slaughter-House Five
August - The Count of Monte Cristo (enjoyed it, but not as much as musketeers)
September - The Kite Runner (Loved it!)
                    A Thousand Splendid Suns
                   Catch-22 (I would recommend it)
                  The Poisonwood Bible  (another good one)
December - The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo  (murder mysteries aren't my thang- but it was well written)
                   The Painter from Shanghai

I read so many good ones this year, it's hard to pick a favorite....

I looked through the list of 1001 books you should read before you die, and I had only read 23 of them.  My only "New Years Resolution" is to up that number, if only by 1 in this next year.

Does anyone have any suggestions for reading this next year?

Sunday, December 27, 2009

cupcake truffles

A wedding I went to back in March served these as their wedding cake.  They were so much fun because they had about 8 different flavors to choose from and ample amount of each, so you could eat to your heart's delight.  About 2 weeks ago, I passed a chic cupcake shop and thought I should try to make those truffles.  I did a little bit of internet research and came up with my own recipe...And here it is:

Cupcake Truffles

-1 Homemade Cake  (can make it from scratch - or from a box)
-1 can of frosting (can also make this homemade)
-Candy melts or Almond bark

While the cake is still warm, crumble it in a Kitchenaid and mix in the frosting to taste, until it's all mixed up.

Chill for about an hour

"Melon Ball" them unto wax paper and freeze for about 6 hours.

Melt the candy melts or almond bark, and dip your cupcake balls into it, and set out until dry

The flavors I made:

Chocolate cake & home made espresso buttercream frosting

Red velvet cake & cream cheese frosting

chocolate cake & homemade mint frosting

funfetti cake & funfetti frosting

*Don't use extracts to flavor the bark - it will lose it's ability to harden/stick to the truffle
*Use Wilton's food coloring to color the almond bark for decorating, or else it will cause it to not stick/harden

Friday, December 11, 2009

Christmas Holiday

Dear Christmas Holiday,

Please come quickly.  Much fun is to be had.  There are cookie dough/cake truffles to be made, Christmas presents to embroider, delectable food to be eaten, family and friends to be seen, decorations and lights to enjoy, music to be listened to, holiday movies to be watched, good books to be read, and naps to be taken....We will be busy together, so really, you must hurry.



P.S. Until then, thoughts of sugar plums will dance through my head.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Curried Squash & Spinach with Brown Rice

To me the most fun thing about this recipe is that I didn't have to go to the store - everything was in my kitchen!  And it's from a brand new cooking magazine I recently subscribed to - Clean Eating.  I used acorn squash, but I'm sure butternut would be yummy too, as well as any other dark leafy green.  I also added a can of chickpeas to the broth for extra protein.  It was definitely a hearty meal.  (Sorry, no pictures yet again)

1 cup brown rice
1 1/2 lb squash, seeded, stemmed, & diced into 3/4-inch pieces...about 6 cups
6 oz. spinach (about 10 cups loosely packed)
1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
1 1/2 tsp coriander, ground
1 1/2 tsp cumin, ground
3/4  tsp turmeric, ground
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
1/8 tsp cayenne powder
1 tbsp safflower, sunflower, or peanut oil
2 cloves garlic, minced

-Prepare rice

-While rice is cooking, in a medium bowl, combine broth, coriander, cumin, turmeric, salt, and cayenne. set aside.

-When rice is about 10 minutes from being done, in a large skillet or saucepan with a tight fitting lid, warm oil over medium heat.  Add squash and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 2 minutes.  Add garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until fragrant (about 1 minute).  Add broth mixture, increase heat to high and bring to a boil.  Reduce to low, cover and cook until squash is tender.

-Remove lid and add spinach, 1 handful at a time, stirring after each addition until wilted.  Serve curried squash-spinach mixture over rice.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Even though getting out the door on time was a little rough this morning, once I did, I was happy to be on the road to clinic.  I still absolutely love it.  The kids are so much fun and I am truly enjoying getting to know each of their personalities.

Yesterday I saw how speech therapy goes beyond the /s/'s and /r/'s.  I sat in IEP (Individualized Education Plan for children receiving services) meetings all day. (The meetings are held annually to talk about the child's goals, progress, services, and what needs to happen for the child to succeed.  Parents, principal, psychologist, and any special service as well as regular ed. teacher participates)

It was a humbling experience for me.  So often I get caught up on, "these crazy parents, don't they know any better - no wonder their kid is in special ed.!" And - These poor kids, they have no love at home.  When in reality, these parents are doing the best that they can with what they've got.  I met three women who truly love their children with all of their hearts.  The first mother works during the day and her husband works at night so someone can be home when the boys get home.  But, when she gets home, her husband has already left for work.  The second mother is recently divorced and trying to make sense of her new life of being a single parent while still trying to provide for her sons.  The third mother has 4 sons, one (the one the meeting was held for) was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor at the beginning of last year.  He had surgery back in April, during surgery, he suffered a stroke.  Since April, he has been receiving chemo.  Her husband also has cancer and is in & out of the hospital.  She shared that their marriage is on the brink of collapsing.

All of these mothers needed a compassionate listening ear.  I was reminded that everyone has a story.  I could have judged these mothers for not going over their sons' homework with them, or not providing whatever, I, the 22 year old inexperienced girl, thought should be provided.  If I had given a judgemental air, chances are they wouldn't have been on the same page as me; I would have gotten no where.

I learned that in order to succeed in this career, I must have a heart.  Yes, the meetings could have been described as long and boring, but it also gave me a chance to see a little more into these little guys' lives.  I know there will be times when I will forget this lesson, but I hope to remember to listen with my heart.

Monday, November 16, 2009

butternut squash risotto

In an effort to kick ennui in you know where, I have decided to try out a new recipe each week.  Tonight, I made butternut squash risotto to compliment salmon & a green salad.  It's so yummy and creamy, despite there being no cream. Definitely a recipe I will make again as a festive side dish.

 The recipe called for parsley, but I'm not particularly fond of it, so I left it out, seemed just fine to me! I also roasted the squash today during my lunch break, to help cut down prep time this evening. I also roasted the squash at 450 instead of 400  Enjoy

Squash Risotto
from Bowl Food, Kay Scarlett
Serves 4-6

1 1/4 lbs. squash, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
3 Tablespoons olive oil
2 cups vegetable stock
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
2 cups arborio rice
1/2 cup white wine
2 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup grated Parmesan
3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh Italian parsley

Preheat the oven to 400*F.  Toss the cubes of squash in 2 tablespoons of the oil, place in a baking dish, and roast for 30 minutes or until tender and golden.  Turn the squash pieces halfway through the cooking time.

Heat the stock and 3 cups of water in a saucepan, cover, and keep at a low simmer.

Heat the remaining oil in a large saucepan and cook the onion, garlic, and rosemary, stirring, over low heat for 5 minutes or until the onion is cooked but not browned.  Add the rice and stir to coat.  Stir in the wine for 2-3 minutes or until absorbed.

Add 1/2 cup stock, stirring constantly over medium heat until all the liquid is absorbed.  Continue adding the stock 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly for 20 minutes, or until all the stock is absorbed and the rice is tender and creamy.  Season to taste with salt and black pepper and stir in the squash, butter, Parmesan, and parsley.  Serve immediately.

Sorry there is no picture this week...Hopefully next week!

Thursday, November 12, 2009


My greatest fear is that all I could be and all I would be will get lost in time.  For the first time in my life I realize that right now, I can be selfish. I can be irresponsible. But can I do it without negative feelings?

Monday, November 9, 2009

burnt out.

I have hit a wall. I am exhausted. I am tired of everything...I'm tired of school, work, tutoring...etc... Earlier today I was yearning for my PUC days. I think the reason why I have become so tired is because everything in my life is so routine...or at least planned. Nothing seems to be spontaneous anymore, but there seems to be no room for spontaneity - my days are filled to the brim...It seems a little ridiculous to "plan" spontaneity in. And then when I think of what happened this weekend - my brother spontaneously surprising me - I wonder if that is really my problem at all... What I do know is - I want out of Loma Linda as soon as possible!

Wouldn't this be nice:

Big Sur...hopefully I get there sooner than Spring Break. I think a trip up the 101 would be fabulous.

Sunday, November 8, 2009


Friday night I didn't have Bible Study with the Anchoring kids, so I could finally bring something to "Friday Night Dinner". I "brewed"(?) apple cider and made a yummy pumpkin bread pudding recipe that I found on Smitten Kitchen. It was basically baked pumpkin french toast. I went to Martha Green's and bought some yummy cinnamon swirl bread for it - delicious and so easy!!

As the evening started to wrap up, I tried to leave, but Merrilee insisted on showing me picture after picture of friends of hers on FB. Then, around 11:30, Tyler walked in! He had driven down from PUC to surprise me!

Sabbath, we went to lunch with our grandparents, aunt, and cousin. After lunch, Tyler and I went with our aunt & cousin back to our grandparents' property and hung out up there the rest of the day/night. It had been a very long time since I have laughed that much and that hard. It definitely felt like our childhood. After posting about adulthood, a good friend, Monika reminded me to play. Unadulterated play - tag, jumping, running, frisbee, act like a kid again, eat pizza and rootbeer floats....And that's kinda what I did this weekend. With Kinsey (4yrs), we built forts out of pillows, ate marshmallows, and danced around to our favorite songs. And we laughed. A lot.

I was really glad to have my brother around this weekend. We have become so much closer in the past 6 months. I felt honored that he chose to spend this weekend with me.

Happy New Week!

Pumpkin Bread Pudding
Adapted from Gourmet Magazine, October 2007

I made a few of my own adaptations to this, using only milk and no cream (to me, it makes no difference to me in dishes like this, so I figure I’ll give my arteries a break), and doubling almost all of the spices. Oh, and I added bourbon, but you probably anticipated that.

1 1/2 cups whole milk (Or 1 cup heavy cream plus 1/2 cup whole milk)
3/4 cup canned solid-pack pumpkin
1/2 cup sugar
2 large eggs plus 1 yolk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
Pinch of ground cloves
2 tablespoons bourbon (optional)
5 cups cubed (1-inch) day-old baguette or crusty bread
3/4 stick unsalted butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle.

Gourmet’s Instructions: Whisk together pumpkin, cream, milk, sugar, eggs, yolk, salt, spices and bourbon, if using, in a bowl.

Toss bread cubes with butter in another bowl, then add pumpkin mixture and toss to coat. Transfer to an ungreased 8-inch square baking dish and bake until custard is set, 25 to 30 minutes.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


This past week I have realized that no matter how hard I try not to, I am growing up. It's happening whether I'm ready or not...and I'm starting to realize, I'm not ready to be an adult.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

a wife....?

I have sort of had the past two days off. On Mondays I typically have class from 8:00-10:00am and then again at 3:00. I usually work during that time and study too. But this week because we had a test, I was out by 8:30. I went to the gym, ran errands, and came home and worked around the house. I felt like I was finally catching my breath! I also have a break between class & tutoring. During that time I normally go to my room and relax a bit or study, but because I lost the keys, I went to the craft store!

The fun didn't stop there, I normally have to work Wednesdays, but because it was canceled, I can do my fieldwork this Wednesday. Which means I had another free day! I slept in and worked some more around the house....I feel like that's all I've done the past 2 days and there is still so much more that needs to be done! Which is why I am thinking I need....a wife?

My mom sort of gave me the "ok" on transforming the office space into a crafting/reading nook. Here are some ideas I liked.

I love the pieces hanging from the top....I want to hang or pin up inspiration on the walls.

I am most likely going to put a table like this in the room.

I really like the crisp, clean, simple design of this room - it seems to put together both the reading nook as well as craft space.

The room is pretty small...It will need a new desk and some shelves to hold the supplies, as well as some sort of storage underneath the desk...I can't wait for my mom to get back so we can start with this!

Monday, November 2, 2009

new friends, blogs, and the bug.

This weekend was a busy, but good one. Family from Escondido were staying with me because they were playing in the football tournament. Saturday night I went to a Halloween party and had a blast! It was fun to reconnect with old friends. Hopefully I will be a better friend and keep the connection. Sunday was a full day - 8 hours of childcare, but it was good. I made a new friend! There is this really neat lady who works for me, and we became friends this weekend. I am really excited about this friendship, I have always wanted to be friends with people outside of my generation, but not because they are a friend's parent or parent's friend....but I connection all my own, and now I have it! A cousin of mine met an elderly man at a bookstore and they became friends. I always thought that was really cool.

I am addicted to blogs - friend's blogs, design blogs, home blogs, craft blogs, and cooking blogs.

Today's challenge was to do something creative and I couldn't think of anything, so I started searching craft blogs. I think I found my Christmas gift for this year...It looked pretty cute on one of the blogs, but I will have to play around with it and see if I like it. I also went to Hancock Fabrics to look around and get inspired....I am definitely inspired, I just don't know exactly how to do everything I want to.

If my mom doesn't come home soon, I am turning her office into a craft room....I've already designed it. When I have my own place, and not just renting with friends, I am totally going to have another room for crafting, and it will also have a little reading nook too. School is just getting in the way...I wish I could just spend the days reading, gardening, crafting, and cooking :)

I thought this was so neat. I love mixed media art. Ah, there is so much I want to play with. Happy November!

Friday, October 30, 2009


So I haven't actually carried out one of my challenges since Monday, but I do feel like I am definitely more conscious of my actions. Something so little as this has been a huge growing experience for me. I am more conscious of myself as well as those around me. I feel like I am finally becoming healthy. I had a conversation with a wise woman who was talking about dealing with grief and all the terrible things of this planet. She was talking about how we have to let ourselves feel them, not to just pretend that they aren't there, and also not just dwell on it too...This concept was so foreign to me. Whenever I did allow myself to feel these things, I kind of slipped into a depression for awhile - not too long, but I definitely closed myself off to all things good for that short period of time. I felt guilty about being happy or enjoying good because I thought I was supposed to be feeling sad....It was kind of a self-induced grief, not a true genuine grief. But this week when things reminded me of my dad or when I heard heart breaking news, I let myself feel that sadness, but it didn't stay forever, and I didn't feel guilty when it left...And my happiness seems to be more genuine too. So that's the first part.

I also feel more conscious of others. Yesterday afternoon when I was driving around Nichol looking for parking, I saw this older woman roaming the parking lot. I stopped to ask her if she was lost and sure enough - she couldn't find her car. So I drove her around the hill as we looked for her car. What I did wasn't amazing, but I think that since I am trying to be very conscious of spreading love around, I was able to see a need and act on it. I also am realizing that I'm smiling a lot more to people behind the counters at stores and so on. I seem to be valuing people more. (Now if I can also be a little more patient with crazy drivers, ha!)

I don't know if I am actually making a tangible difference in this world, but it's making a difference in my own life.

Also, I have something on my heart, but I'm not quite sure how to go about it. I am really seeing a need for a girls' mentoring program at LLUC...It's a huge undertaking, and I just don't know if I could do it...but I think it would be really neat. I'm thinking of like a cross-generational thing - like collegiate mentors sr. high, sr. high mentors jr. high, and jr. high to older elementary girls... I just don't know how to get it started...And if there really is any interest, but I really can see it being a success if there is buy-in...Why do I make myself so busy?

I love autumn!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


So I kinda forgot about my challenges this weekend and today.

Friday I sorta did it. My challenge was to tell a child that they could change the world. I forgot about it. But I think I did empower a struggling teen girl to change her own world. I took a friend out to lunch and she laid it all out there for me of what is going on and has been going on in her life this past summer. She has made some choices that she regrets and has had a rough time getting out of that cycle. We talked about some ways of how to do that, but we were also realistic about how difficult it was going to be. It was definitely a good conversation - later on in the day she pointed out how I need to take my own advice...I kept using my stressing out as something that I'm working on as an example...and she saw me stress out!

I completely forgot to even look at my challenges for Saturday & Sunday. Monday was to be still for 10 minutes...this was tough! I got a text message within those 10 minutes, and that was really distracting to not look at it, but towards the end of the 10 minutes, I think I could have taken a nap! I definitely felt a lot better after stressing about how much needed to be done that day.

I saw my first fall leaf float to the ground tonight!

Thursday, October 22, 2009


Today's challenge was to tell 3 people I am grateful for them and why.  I only remembered the challenge when I was alone, so I emailed all of my thank-yous.  One name popped out at me first, but I usually am always thanking this friend for being such a good one.  I thought I should pick 3 that I might not talk to that often, or might not have thanked them before.  I started to make a list of friends and realized I am a very lucky girl.  I am so grateful to have so many people in my life to thank for loving and supporting me.  I finally chose three and thought about these special three and just how important they are in my life as well as others.  All three of these people love me unconditionally - one of them is there for me through thick and thin...and she's definitely seen the "thin" me right in the "thick" of it, the second one is my "bosom buddy", we are so much alike it is crazy! but she is a better person than I could ever hope to be - she has such grace. And last but certainly not least is probably the bestest friend I could ever ask for.  Hands down.

I can learn something from each of these wonderful people in the areas of friendship. 
From #1: Always have a listening ear & be understanding of others
From #2: Laugh & Cry with your friends...but laugh more :)
From #3: Be in communication with your friends as much as possible...without being annoying...But don't expect them to respond.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


Today's challenge was to smile at everyone I met.  At first I thought this challenge was going to be easy, but then I became kind of self conscious about it.  And it was also easy to forget.  With every smile, I got a response back, whether it be another smile, a wave, or even a few verbal "hellos".  The verbal responses were a pleasant surprise and somewhat of a positive reinforcement.  

I loved this picture of a smile...Who can look at this and not smile?

I am especially excited about tomorrow's challenge.  

Monday, October 19, 2009

random act of kindness.

Today was the first day of taking "the plunge".  I challenged myself to commit one random act of kindness.  I had forgotten about my challenge earlier this morning, but remembered on my way home for lunch.  When I got home, my mom was complaining about back pain, and I offered to give her a massage.  She readily accepted.  

As the day went on, we both looked for ways to help each other out - She tossed a load of my laundry into the wash and I offered to clean up the kitchen after dinner.  

So far this is a fun experiment.  

Sunday, October 18, 2009

the plunge.

Despite being a little overwhelmed, I had a great week.  I LOVE fieldwork.  I know that I am definitely going into the right profession.  I was so excited driving out there this week.  I also had a few breaks during the week - Hayden's game & Starbucks with Michelle & Ken too!

After a stressful Friday morning that dragged into the afternoon, I had a blast at Friday Night Dinner.  I can't remember laughing that much in a long time.  

Saturday night I was reminded that staying "in" can be just as much fun as going out.  I went over to my friend Carli's to watch the end of the Yankees/Angels game with her & Nicole.  BOO YAH ANGELS!   It was nice to catch my breath in the craziness of this weekend with them.

Friday night during The Anchoring, one of my girls told me about some challenge thing they do at her school.  Every day during announcements, they present a challenge for the kids to carry out if they wish.  The challenges promotes peace on campus.  She was really excited about it and told me how she writes them in her notebook and tries to carry them out each day. I also knows that she writes down what we talk about in The Anchoring and tries to apply it to her life.  I have seen very few people earnestly try to live out their faith.  

She has inspired me to do the same.  For the next month and a half I have written out challenges for each day to carry out.  Some are silly, some are for stress relief, but most are to show kindness to those around me and to help me value this great life I live.  Each night I will try to write about my challenge for that day.  

I am really excited to see how it all unfolds and what comes of it.  So, tomorrow, I take the plunge.

Sunday, October 11, 2009


This week was filled with music.  I got to hear some really great live music this week with some awesome people.  On Thursday I saw State Radio and Dusty Rhodes and the River Band.  Both acts were great.  Chad gave Summer & I a shout-out! Even though it was kind of undeserved...but we will take it!  I also scored another State Radio set list! 

Saturday night I saw Brett Dennen, G. Love, and Jason Mraz.  In the middle of G. Love's set, he called out Tristan Prettyman!  I was so stoked...I kinda went a little overboard.  The show was really fun and laid back, and we had a fun group of girls.  It had been awhile since the last time I heard some live music before this week, and now I am hooked.  I think in a week or two I will hit up Hotel Cafe.

This was definitely a great week.  I am truly in love with my life.  This week I heard a definition of Happiness that I love - "Happiness is having someone to love, someone to love you, and something to look forward to."  In this moment, I am bursting with happiness.

Even though this week we found out how losing our house is definitely a reality, I still can't believe how well things are going.  Everything seems to be coming together so well.  I am falling more and more in love with my Anchoring kids each week, school is going well, and I am enjoying my friends and making new ones more than ever.  I am so excited to see how this year unfolds.  

P.S.  I loved this - On Friday night, I had my kids journal about what God was to them that day, and he simply said, God is bigger than a frown.

Monday, September 14, 2009

country music.

This time of year is always a little rough.  At home we are all on edge and not quite sure how to relate to one another.  As I left the house this morning to go grocery shopping, I was feeling pretty bitter, angry, and depressed.  The day was definitely not going as I had envisioned it to.  I didn't have motivation to do much and was afraid that it was going to be yet another wasted day. After grocery shopping, I hopped back in my car, and Kenny Chesney's song, "Never Wanted Nothin More" came on.  I started singing along and it completely changed my mood.  I love the lyrics, "I'm what I am and what I'm not.  I'm sure happy with what I've got."  I realized I was spending way too much energy on being bitter.  The rest of they way home I marveled at how big/great/fun God is.  He totally spoke to me through a country song.  I just really felt like He was saying to me, that I didn't have to spend the rest of the day feeling sorry for myself, He created this day for me to enjoy.  I may not be perfect, and this life may not be perfect, but God loves me and is happy with me anyways and "I never wanted nothin more!".

The rest of the day turned out to be quite delightful.  I worked in the yard, went to the library (!), ran some errands, and made a yummy dinner while listening to some great jazz.  I also spent some time on my hammock this afternoon reading.  

P.S. The picture is not of Kenny Chesney...I just liked it.

Thursday, August 27, 2009


When I was a little girl I remember trying to play "make believe" games with adults.  They never played right.  I don't know how to explain it, but I just remember getting frustrated with my mom or my babysitters because they just seemed to forget how to pretend.  I told myself that I would never forget how to pretend.

Today I hung out with my favorite four year old.  When I got to her house, we first played Barbies for awhile...and I found myself forgetting how to pretend. I definitely needed practice.  Then, we played a "make-believe" game where I am not quite sure what was going on, but we were trying to get away from bad people.  There were a lot of hiding, maps, and secret passageways involved.  Again, I found myself lost in her little world.  I had become one of those "adults" who didn't know how to play anymore.  Once I decided to just have fun with it, we had a blast.  We became our own heroines.  We were princesses escaping from a castle and the evil witch who locked us in there.  We had to be careful, or else her guards would put us back in the dungeon.  There were a few close calls, but luckily, Kinsey had the magic key and I had the magic maps that could get us out of any situation.  And when we finally made it back home, we celebrated by going to Chuck E Cheese's and getting our much deserved prizes!

On the way home, I was wondering, When do we stop using our imaginations?  When do we stop playing?  I remember the last time I saw adults playing "make-believe" and I just made fun of them..They were doing some role play game that was like related to World of Warcraft or something. Needless to say, it was wierd..  Maybe we don't stop using them...maybe we use them in different, more practical ways.  

I am grateful for today, for if nothing else, I was a princess who saved the day ;)

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


Favorite moment of today.

This morning, I babysat for Mom's Network.  

Rachel, a girl of about 4, and Braydon, 4, came up to me.  She informed me that when they got bigger, they were going to get married.  Braydon turned to her and with a mischievous smile asked, "Wanna get married right now?".

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

"Blessed are the Peacemakers"

This past week in my Sabbath School class, we talked about loving our enemies.  During our Bible Study, we found it mentioned in several places and figured Jesus was serious about this and maybe we should become serious too.  We asked the questions, "Who are our enemies?" and "What does it mean to love our enemies?".  Our group came to the conclusion that our enemy is anyone we are having conflict with.  Enemies could be our best friends who we just aren't seeing eye-to-eye with, our siblings or parents, or the mean kids at school.  In our discussion, we talked about unconditional forgiveness, going the extra mile, being kind when we don't feel like it, treating everyone with respect, just basically living in love.

At the end of our discussion, we dreamed of what the world would look like if everyone loved their enemies.  This world would look NOTHING like how it does now.  I then challenged the girls in my group to try loving their enemies this week & see if there was a small change in their world.  Jessica, one of the sweetest, most sincere girls in my class suggested that we put reminders up on our mirrors.  I told the girls I would take the challenge too.  I made a sticky for my desktop.  It sounded easy enough...

It's only Tuesday afternoon and I can't believe how many times I have failed at this challenge! I don't know how many times I have snapped at my mom and brother. I guess the good thing about this challenge is I realize how much "violence" is in my life. 

Yesterday afternoon I was hanging out with Tyler, and he was channel surfing and landed on "The Ellen Show".  She was interviewing Deepak Chopra, the spiritual guru.  (It was a re-run) He was talking about a goal he has to have 100 million people take a vow of peace.  He wants 100 million people to pledge to have peaceful thoughts, words, and actions.  Because if there are 100 million people working to live at peace with one another, than the world will be just that more peaceful.   

It's kind of interesting how I took that pledge for just this week and realized how difficult it is for me to live in peace & love.  I have always considered myself, "a good person", and I'm starting to realize, I am really just as "violent" as anyone...I might not act on my thoughts at all times, but I definitely have a ways to go.  I'm kind of embarrassed that I call myself a Christian and I lose my cool and act very un-Christian-like all too often.  I definitely need to pray for help on this one.  Hopefully as the week goes on it will become easier.