Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

Today is Thanksgiving.  I love this holiday. It may just be my favorite.  I don't think I fully realized that until this year, when I was faced with being away from my family on this day.  My family has many traditions, most of which I don't think I ever considered to be traditions.  Maybe simply being together is a tradition.  And I love it.  This morning, my entire family (plus our Thanksgiving guest, Daniel) gathered around the television to watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.  We lasted for about 2 hours, just enjoying being together and laughing at the floats/performances.  I try to watch the parade every year, but usually everyone else is doing their own thing until we eat dinner.  It made me so happy that all of us were there, even if it was just watching a parade.  This Thanksgiving, I am more thankful than ever for my family.  They truly are wonderful and I am so thankful they are mine! 

We have been through a lot this year, and God has been faithful through it all.  Time after time He has provided in the times that seemed hopeless.  God is good. And I am thankful.  Happy Thanksgiving! 

 And happy birthday to my Nathanael! I'm so thankful for you, my brother!  You have personified strength these past few months - you are such an inspiration to me.  Thank you for being such a great friend. God has amazing plans for you and I can't wait to watch you experience them.  I love you so much!

Sunday, November 20, 2011


Today, I volunteered at my second race as a nurse.  This one was a little more intimidating than the first, seeing as it was the Route 66 MARATHON instead of a mere 15k.  When I got to the medical tent this morning, I got in line to receive my assignment from the medical director, who informed me that I could quite possibly be stationed by myself.  After seeing the incredibly terrified look on my face, he quickly reassigned one of the residents from my hospital to share my tent.  Whew!  I could just picture myself being in a serious situation and having no idea what to do!  Thankfully I was stationed around mile 14, meaning that most of the runners were still running strong.  I just had to cheer and hand out a few tongue depressors with Vaseline for chaffed skin.  The only problem was the 38 degree weather and the biting wind!  By the end of three hours and a half hours, when the last runner had passed by my tent, I could barely feel my body.  Over all, it was a fun experience and I'm glad I could be available in case of emergency!  Probably I will do it again.  It's just such a good feeling, knowing that I can volunteer in a useful capacity!

My parents and Nathanael are still up in Iowa at our friends' house.  Nate sees the doctor tomorrow, so hopefully they will be heading home within the next few days.  Ben and I have been holding down the fort nicely, I must say.  I'm kind of proud of the fact that I haven't cooked once and yet we haven't starved!  I will be breaking that trend this week, however, since Josiah, Ben, and I are tackling Thanksgiving dinner this year.  That shall be an adventure for sure!  Ben and I made apple crisp twice from the leftover 20 pounds of apples that Mom purchased before she left.  It is so yummy!  We should probably win some sort of prize for it.  Josiah came home last night - it has been nice having one more person in the house.  They've only been gone for two weeks, but it feels like two months.  Even Snickers is ready to have them home!  In the midst of all of the chaos that has been life for the past few months, I must admit that I am so blessed.  To think that God holds all of this in His hands, that worrying is not a necessary activity, that He collects my thousands of tears shed on a daily basis in a leaves me humbled and oh, oh so thankful.

Sunday, November 13, 2011


Complaining has become a regular habit for me.  My dad constantly reminds me to take just a few minutes to thank God for what I have and that it will change my mindset.  I usually choose to ignore that comment, even though I know he's right.  I've noticed on Facebook that quite a few of my friends are posting something they are thankful for every day in November.  Well, it's the 13th of November and I have yet to do that. But, why not start now?  Here goes:

Today, I am thankful for Amy's Organics frozen pizza.  Maybe that sounds silly, but after a long day at work, 10-minute dinner was exactly what I needed. I hope that you had a beautiful Sunday and that you have a lovely Monday as well!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Obviously, it was very good for my blogging life to have a theme.  I saw a 31 day picture challenge idea on Pinterest last week; I'm thinking about taking the challenge.  It could be interesting and fun, especially since I do not take enough pictures.  I never had a problem taking pictures in college, but since graduation I have lost most of my desire to whip out the camera during special events.  Stay tuned for the picture extravaganza that may soon occur on my blog!

Since Tuesday, Ben and I have been holding down the fort at home.  Mom, Dad, and Nate headed up to Minnesota for appointments at Mayo Clinic.  It's been really strange being home without them.  The house feels quite empty, actually.  Yesterday, Ben and I decided to attempt homemade apple crisp with a few of the dozens of apples overflowing from the refrigerator.  I am pleased to say it was a success!

Last night, Ben and I trekked to Bartlesville to watch Josiah perform in the Mousetrap, OKWU's fall play.  We had so much fun!  The cast was excellent and I always have so much fun hanging out with Josiah and our friends up there.  Today, Ben is in Arkansas for basketball games, so I'm off to my friend Roxanne's to be her Pampered Chef guinea pig!  I love being a guinea pig when it involves food :) 

I have been daily enjoying a cup or two of pumpkin spice coffee, which is of course delicious.  I sent my mother off to Minnesota with instructions to bring me back some Caribou coffee, since it is not sold in Oklahoma.  She told me yesterday that she bought a package of DayBreak (so yummy!) and a package of Kenyan coffee!  I am beyond excited to drink that coffee (plus, when I get it that means my family will be home!).  Please keep my family in your prayers this weekend.  Praise be to God, who is able to do far beyond what we could ever ask or imagine!  Be blessed! 

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Finding Strength

As I've shared in a few of my posts over the past month, I have been discovering in a new way how weak I am.  This shouldn't come as a surprise to me.  I am a finite human being: of course I am weak.  But, being the strong-willed woman that I am, I often refused to admit my weakness and receive God's strength.  Well, I am 22 years old, and this method of survival has yet to work for me.  I usually end up flat on my face before I consider asking for help.  Thankfully, God has blessed me with wonderful friends who remind me that God is strong when I can't be and who come beside me in prayer.  He used several of these people in my life this weekend, for which I cannot begin to voice my thanks.  

God keeps reminding me of the words He spoke to Paul in 2 Corinthians 12: “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”  Today, I am struggling to stand on this promise.  The promise that in the midst of my weakness, He is strong.  It doesn't matter how weak I am or what the situation is. He is strong. 

God, your grace is sufficient for me. Make perfect Your power through my weakness. Amen.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Just Because

Since I devoted the month of October to blogging about joy, it has been a while since I've written simply about my life.  Here are a few highlights from the past month or so: 

* Two friends got married in the month of October, making a total of eight weddings that I have attended this year.  The first wedding was of a dear friend from Bartlesville. My friend Jeff went with me, and we had so much fun!  

The next day I traveled to Wichita Falls, Texas with a few girls I work with for the wedding of our lovely co-worker Kayla.  That was a crazy but fun weekend! 

* I no longer work weekends. I now work two 7a-7p shifts and one mid-shift, 1p-1a. It's taking some adjustment, but I like it a lot! 

* I found somewhere to volunteer with children here in Tulsa, which means I won't have as much time to pin pictures on Pinterest. I think I'm okay with that. 

* I tried my first Pinterest recipe last week: homemade pumpkin spice lattes.  Ben and I decided that we'll have to experiment a little bit...not very yummy. Way too many spices made the lattes kind of crunchy. 

* I volunteered at the Tulsa Run last Saturday as a medical volunteer. I had so much fun!  All I had to do was make sure the runners didn't fall down the hill where I was stationed. Or collapse from a heart attack. Not really sure what I would've done if they had. But I enjoyed cheering them on, breathing a sigh of relief when they'd all run past without any signs of distress! 

* I now listen to country music on a daily basis.  I think I'm falling in love. 

* I am a major fan of pumpkin spice coffee.  Who knew that coffee tastes so much better in seasonal flavors? 

Happy first weekend in November! Don't forget to eat or drink something pumpkin!