Monday, November 30, 2009

Visits, Dream Shopping, and What Really Matters

I've had more of those wonderful reunions since I last wrote.  My family and I were able to celebrate Thanksgiving as well as Nana's 80th, Richard's 29th, & Lindsey's 27th birthdays in Portland with my mom's whole side of the fam.  It was wonderful!  I also got to spend the day today with Amaya who is home from NY.  It was so good just to be with loved ones.

Warning : This is going to be a fluff piece.  I'm feeling fluffy ;)

I'm still contemplating a tattoo.  I want the theme to be unconditional love.  If you can think of a line, phrase, pic that exemplifies me please post it so I can include it in the ideas I'm mulling over.

I love wishlists.  We've been over this.  My lists are full of things I don't need, but still love thinking about.  I think they are the most fun right before birthdays & Christmas because of all the possibility.  Currently there are a few things I've been drooling over.  One of them is in my "lately" list to the right.  I saw it at Nordstrom tonight and now I'm longing for it.  Gorgeous and fun while still pulling off sophistication.  I'm also loving Hobo's Lauren wallet in Mogano.   My Sephora wishlist is bursting.  Amaya got me one of the fragrances I'd been wanting - Saint by Kat Von D.  The other one I'm wanting is Unconditional Love.  Sorry, for all the silly gushing.  Amaya & I wandered the mall and I got all starry eyed.

Here comes the substance:
With Christmas coming I wanted to let folks know of some great places to donate to help those in need.  A number of my friends & family are donating instead of exchanging gifts.  I think it is awesome and wanted to encourage my readers to do the same.  These are only a few options.  There are so many other places to give.  Please consider giving gifts that will last and change lives this year. 

Heart to Heart International
Community Pregnancy Centers 
CityTeam Ministries
Living Water International
Covenant House 

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Listen Here

Anyone who knows me knows that I love music.  I have no talent for it (unless you count often knowing titles & artists).    I would gladly listen to music from the moment I wake.  I can't listen to it until I fall asleep because I have the bad habit of keeping myself awake listening.  I love the power music has to influence your mood or take you back to an entirely different place and time.  I love that the opening notes to "America" by Simon and Garfunkel make me feel I'm being embraced by an old friend.  To share the music I'm discovering and my dearly loved favorites I've added a section at the very bottom right of this blog that lists songs I've bookmarked on my pandora stations.  I hope you'll enjoy it.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Yesterday's Quote

"Cheese has no business..."
"...being easy?"

---The first part was me & then Peter filled in where he thought I should be going with it

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Confessions of an Admittedly Insecure Blogger

Warning : I am about to delve into my insecurities.  This is not a plea for a response.  It will sound that way and I know it.  I'm choosing to write anyway.

While I write my blog mostly for myself I still find myself hungry for interaction.  I find myself longing to know someone out there is reading and caring what I'm thinking.  I check my blog for comments regularly.  I link my blog to my facebook notes so I can receive comments there as well.  Today one of my entries received two "likes" and it made me smile.

I haven't spent much of my life being insecure.  When I first moved to California I went through a time of being so shy I wanted to fade into nonexistence.   So much so that I used to "cut" recess and hide under my desk to read.  Eventually it got better and I made more friends.  Suddenly in Jr. High I burst from my shell and never looked back.  Throughout high school and college I was very self assured.  I, of course, dealt with the usual insecurities in relationships (sometimes more than the usual), but overall I knew who I was and what I wanted.  I've felt much less that way since becoming a mom.  I know there are a million reasons for this (it's the most wonderful yet hardest job I've ever had, I've put on a few pounds, I'm finding the balance between the various roles in my life, etc).  Writing makes me feel more secure.  It has been part of me for years.  Whether it was diaries, poetry, essays, or ramblings it has been a way for me to sort through my feelings.  It has also been a way for me to share those feelings and better understand the feelings of others.  I guess it makes me feel more myself.

Blogging is much like the other mediums in many ways except that you are rarely present when it is being read.  It leaves you little chance to experience the readers' response.  This has been hard for me.  It has been difficult not to see or hear a response.  I find myself longing for any kind of interaction with what I've written, any feedback - good or bad (but mostly good if I'm honest).  At times it has made me question my writing or, more accurately, my writing of a blog.  I'm still deciding how I feel about taking so much of myself and placing it out into the world so publicly.  I think I am more for sharing in intimate settings like poetry readings and time with friends.  Then again, I suppose if all writers were this way we'd have no books.

Familiar Faces OR That Joyful Leap Of Your Heart

In early October I got to be part of some homecomings and overlapping visits of old friends.  Kelly made it back to SJ to adopt my Sis-In-Law's dog (being the saint she is drove all the way from AZ to pick her up).  Kerr came for a wedding.  It was the first time since my wedding in 2005 they were here at the same time.

Kelly and I sat across from one another in eighth grade science.  We've been close ever since.  We saw each other through the best and worst of high school.  We helped each other grapple with things fourteen, fifteen, and sixteen year olds should never have to face.  We built the sort of bonds that make you sisters no matter the passage of time.  Kel moved to Arizona after shortly after we graduated and, although we visited regularly for a few years, in the end we floated in and out of one another's lives.  This time it had been two years since we'd seen each other.

Kerr and I met in junior high as well.  We started to get close when he & Dom would cut church and walk to my house on Sunday mornings.  It wasn't until freshman year, however, that we became best friends.  Strangely enough, I remember the exact moment that cinched it.  I was fourteen and he was fifteen (our birthdays are back to back) and it was at a party at Raf's.  I was there for him in a moment of need.  After that we were there for each other, period.  Over the last eighteen years our lives have changed and gone in different directions, but there has never been a moment when we couldn't call the other.  Kerr had been home several months back, but we never get to see enough of each other when he is here and there is always a sadness when he has to go back to Texas.

The weekend after Kelly and Kerr's visits I got to see my cousin Bart for the first time in twelve years.  Bart & I are only a few months apart in age.  We grew up near each other until we were about eight years old and our families moved.  His to Wisconsin and mine to California.  From then on we lived half way and, at times, all the way across the country from each other.  We'd see each other every few years and it'd be like no time had passed at all.  I can't believe this time it had been twelve years, long enough for me to finish college, him to be stationed overseas more than once, us to both get married, and for me to have a child.

What I wanted to write about was that moment you first see a loved one after much too much time has passed.  It is the moment you first lay eyes on them when it fully hits you just how much you've missed them.  You are always aware that you miss them when you think of them, but life keeps going and you accept that you don't get to see them.  You stop really thinking about the fact that they are no longer part of your everyday life, though you'd like them to be.  All of that dulls until the moment you see them again.  All of a sudden it washes over you how much you've missed them and how glad you are that they have been in your life.  I felt so blessed to get to have three of those moments within a week.  Kelly, Kerr, and Bart, I love you guys more than you know.  Boppa, Momma, Richard, Aunties, Uncles, Cousins, Talicia, Amaya, Janette, and a few others, I'm waiting for those moments.  I love you and I can't wait until I see you next!!

Avoidance Never Makes It Go Away

Amaya has once again inspired me (she's pretty good at that, as most of you know).  She has finally caught up on her blog and it challenged me to do the same.  You may have noticed I've been avoiding writing much of anything deep for a while now.  The ideas for blog entries have been piling up in my head, but I just haven't been able to force myself to sit down and write them.  I think part of it has been how busy we've been this last month.  We've been hugely blessed to see family which is wonderful; however, having so much going on and traveling and such has just left me spent.  When I get a chance to sit down all I want to do veg out and let my brain leak out my ear.  This has led to more than a few hours of mindless television and Bejeweled Blitz.  It has also led to my poor blog gathering dust except for very brief entries, quotes, and videos.  Sorry.  I will put some time into it this week.


"And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them."
---Romans 8:28