Sunday, November 27, 2011

The Best Way to Spread Christmas Cheer

"The best way to spread Christmas cheer is staying up all night to get your homework done so you can start making Christmas cookies the rest of the week!"

Seriously, so excited!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


There's this running joke in my family about how sometimes holidays for us turn into Festivus.

What? You don't know what Festivus is?

So, back on track: this year around Thanksgiving I feel a little Festivus growing in my heart. Maybe it's the rainy weather or the fact that we're in the middle of yet another big transition but I feel like I want to Air Some Grievances and participate in the Feats of Strength.

Or look at this, because it just makes me laugh:

Another great way to get out of the Thanksgiving doldrums is to watch one of the only known movies specifically centered around Thanksgiving:

And of course, there will come that time around 11 pm on Thanksgiving night where I drag Dusty out into the cold and begin our Black Friday tradition: Dusty complaining in a half serious/ half joking way about how miserable he is and me silently cheering on the people in front of us who start to fight those jokers trying to cut in line at Old Navy.

Friday, November 18, 2011

New New Beginnings

Well hello to the small handful of folks who read my blog! It has been a whirlwind of a past few weeks. OK, months.

Here's some crazy awesome news: remember that new job I started in August? Well, I'm starting another new one! I've been given a "promotion" so to speak to a full time Resident Director of the freshman girl's dorm. This means a few things:

1.) We have to move. Again. Luckily, it's only across campus
2.) We have to put even more stuff in storage. I am a-ok with this, for the most part.
3.) Dusty will be living in a girl's dormitory. He's a-ok with this, for the most part.
4.) I'll get to start learning an entirely new job. So far, on day 2 in the office, Post-it notes are my best friend. I mean they're everywhere. To the point where it's sort of embarrassing.

Stay tuned for hopefully more regular posting. I mean, after I move, and finish out my first semester in grad school. Then I'll do it. Probably.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


I was listening NPR's Fresh Air on the way home from class tonight and Terry Gross was interviewing author Maurice Sendak, best known for writing Where the Wild Things Are.

This interview was one of the most honest, raw, heartbreaking, and beautiful interviews I've ever heard.

You can look at some samples of his new book Bumble-ardy here.

Listen to the interview. I know it's 20 minutes long but it's so, so worth your time. Here's one of the more haunting quotes from the interview; he's looking back on his life and in his current position: he's just lost two of the people that he loved most in this world within the past few months:

"I have nothing now but praise for my life. I'm not unhappy. I cry a lot because I miss people. They die and I can't stop them. They leave me and I love them more. ... What I dread is the isolation. ... There are so many beautiful things in the world which I will have to leave when I die, but I'm ready, I'm ready, I'm ready."

10,000 Reasons

This song is rocking me right now.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Tonight I just feel a little overwhelmed with the goodness of the Lord. I've spent some time just sitting and reflecting on my life in the past few years and the only conclusion I can come up with is that I am a product of a good Father.

I'm loving this passage from Psalm 40 out of the Message:

"But all who are hunting for you -- oh, let them sing and be happy! Let those who know what you're all about tell the world you're great and not quitting. And me? I'm a mess. I'm nothing and have nothing: make something of me. You can do it, you've got what it takes -- but God, don't put it off."

So much more is swarming through my head and heart tonight so I thought I'd share a small portion of it.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

A Long Obedience

I recently started reading the book A Long Obedience in the Same Direction by Eugene Peterson. This is long overdue since my Too Cool Friend Andi recommended to me the chapter on Community many moons ago. However, I feel like my choice in reading it is very timely.

Here is a passage that really struck me today:

"The truth about me is that God made and loves me.

The truth about those sitting beside me is that God made and loves them, and each one is therefore my neighbor.

The truth about the world is that God rules and provides for it.

The truth about what is wrong with the world is that I and the neighbor sitting beside me have sinned in refusing to let God be for us, over us and in us.

The truth about what is at the center of our lives and of our history is that Jesus Christ was crucified on the cross for our sins and raised from the tomb for our salvation and that we can participate in new life as we believe in him, accept his mercy, respond to his love, attend to his commands."

Friday, July 29, 2011


Dear Auntie,

Today would be your birthday, wouldn't it?
Today, I choose to remember you in your health.
As the lady who loved her obnoxious dogs.
Who used to tell me as a child when we were eating potato chips together that the folded-over ones were especially made for her, so not to eat them when I found them.
Who gave me my first car.
Who was perpetually "sending me a package."
Who took notice of my love for Beanie Babies as a kid and proceeded to inundate me with them on into my teens.
Who made sure that we got the loudest, most complicated toys for Christmas... just to irritate my dad.
Who taught me to love Black Friday shopping and how to check out at the jewelry counter in order to eliminate waiting in line.

Because really, aren't all these things (and many more) what being a good aunt is all about?

So yes, today would be your birthday. And I choose to remember you in your health.

Thursday, July 28, 2011


Dusty is still up in Meade Co, which means I have a lot of time to myself right now.

I'm partly OK with this because life is about to get insane come Monday. But I also find myself just wandering around the apartment, randomly rearranging things, opening the fridge but not getting anything, checking emails, checking Facebook, looking out the window, then starting the whole cycle over again.

I'm fully aware of how corny this sounds but I feel a little lost without him around here to talk to.

When I'm alone like this I get really impulsive. Right now I'm simultaneously wanting to:

1.) Make this grilled veggie pizza I saw on PW this morning
2.) Go see my grandparents
3.) Get some ice cream
4.) Drive out to the lake
5.) Go swimming
6.) Buy some nails so I can hang some shelves in the bathroom

Pretty sure that ice cream one is going to win out in the end.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Young Blood

There's some songs that remind me of a certain season in my life. Like Andy Davis' Please Turn Red reminds me of my favorite years from college (so what if it's a break up song?)

Desert Song by Hillsong accurately sums up the past two and a half years of my life in Meade County. Actually, there was a lot of Hillsong/Jesus Culture happening at that time.

The Mumford and Son album Sigh No More (specifically the song The Cave) reminds me of dredging through life at Bluegrass Cellular, when I hated my job and lived for the weekends.

As I start this new season in life at Lindsey Wilson, I wonder what songs will take center stage? Right now, I'm really digging this song by The Naked and Famous:

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Empty Room

This little song is a gem.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Garden of Love

In the midst of moving, changing addresses, requesting records, packing, cleaning the old house, cleaning the new apartment, unpacking, driving, dropping things off, picking things up, and general mayhem, today I received a little pick me up at one of my least favorite places on earth: the post office.

Aren't these stamps adorable?

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Farewell Feline Friend

Now comes the time in our move where we are desperately trying to find a home for our feral barn cat not so feral, inside/outside house cat.

Before all you haters gonna hate, it was either a cat or a mice-infested home. Clearly we chose wisely.

We've literally asked anyone we could think of if they'd be interested in a cat with extra toes and a slight eating disorder. So far, no takers.

We even asked my parents, and they live 600 miles away.

Rudy came from Dusty's parent's stock of (at the time) 4 cats with the condition of "no givesy backsy" which, in all actuality is exactly what we're going to have to do while we try to find someone to take him.

He is hilarious! How can this not make you laugh:

 I've never seen an animal that literally looked like it would kill you, if only it could.

And really, his favorite past time?

As much as we hate (hate) admitting this, Dusty and I have grown rather attached to this little guy over the years we've been in Meade County. We always joke that one of our favorite past times is making fun of our cat, but deep down we know it's not a joke. He's infamous around our circle of friends for his curmudgeonly old man cat-itude!

So! Who wants him? No seriously, he's got to go. Santa hat not included.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Boxes, Thanksgiving Feast, and Standardized Testing

Well, we're getting into that part of the move where things start getting real.

Up until now, it's just been this big plan that we've had in our heads. We have a course of action but it just seemed so far away!

This was taken last week. Things are looking much, much worse.

But, of course, life can't be as simple as just packing a U-Haul then unloading it again.

While cleaning out the chest freezer in our garage we found, buried at the bottom, a 14 lb turkey.

Naturally, Dusty thought this would be an ideal time to cook up the bird. So while I'm (still) packing stuff up today, he's preparing a Thanksgiving feast, which involved re-opening boxes that were already taped up and ready to go. ("Where's my carving knife?" "Where's the olive oil?") Do you think I'm joking?

On top of that mountain of poultry, today I found out that in order to get my scores in time to apply for grad school, I will have to take the GRE next Tuesday. This was not negligence on my part; the GRE is being revised and test scores starting in August will be delayed by three months.

Jesus take the wheel!

What am I doing to combat the grumpies? Playing Tiny Tower on my iPad in between boxes, listening to a little Flo+The Machine, and enjoying the turkey aroma that will soon be permeating my home. Possibly some light cardio, and definitely a glass of wine tonight.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

BIG News

I can finally write a post about what's been going on around these parts lately! Freedom, sweet freedom.

For a short, short exposition:

Last year I decided I wanted to start my Master's degree. There were two problems with this:

  1. The program I wanted to attend is at WKU in Bowling Green (which trusty Google Maps says is about 2 hours from where I live)
  2. We're broke. 
So I kind of put it on the back burner. It was one of those, "Maybe I'll do that some day," kind of things. That is, until the Lord brought it to the front. 

As of August 1st I will be an employee at Lindsey Wilson College, in Columbia, KY! I will be joining the Residence Life and Student Activities departments as an Apartment Manager and Assistant Student Activities Director. Dusty and I are so incredibly excited about joining the LWC community! We've been looking for jobs since about January, and this was the first one that we both felt we really, really wanted. 

So- what does getting my Master's degree and getting a new job have in common? As it turns out: everything!

Usually when someone gets hired at a college or university, they also receive as a benefit free tuition at that establishment. 

Listen to how good the Lord is right now: as an employee at Lindsey Wilson I can choose to go wherever I want! And guess what program is a mere hour away from where we'll be living? None other than the one at WKU, where I've been wanting to go all along.

Did you catch that? God took my two biggest obstacles and demolished them, like completely. 

Currently, our house is in shambles, I don't know where anything is, and Rudy is starting to have crazy eyes all the time. (Incidentally if anyone would like a cat with 7 toes on each paw and a slight health condition that is completely taken care of with a certain kind of food quite easily located at your local Wal-Mart, you're in luck!)

In my first draft of this post I had written out a very detailed bulleted list of our Relocation Timeline, but who cares right? Just know that we will be between Columbia and Meade County a lot, a lot, a lot this month and our last day at Buck Grove (and, consequently, Dusty's job) is July 31. 
    Dusty is still looking for employment down there. Are we worried? Hello! Have you read the rest of this super long post? Of course not! The Lord is good and he will not leave us destitute. 

    Phew! It feels so good to get all this out. The best part about waiting so long to tell everyone is I've largely avoided Tweeting/Facebooking in a very whiny fashion every step we've taken in packing the house so far. 

    More to come! (Fun news, not whiny news. Promise.)

    Sunday, June 26, 2011


    I have really neglected the ole Bloggy lately.

    I mean really, it's just a season of busyness.

    Of summer, of youth camp, of Vacation Bible School, of... of lots of stuff.

    I wish I had something fun or witty or entertaining to share with my two readers. But I don't. Fact of the matter is even if I did I've been so busy lately I probably wouldn't remember what it is.

    Soon, like this fall, things will slow down. Until then, I'll have much, much more to type about this time next week.

    Come back soon!

    Monday, June 6, 2011


    Today my brain is full of about 15 different to-do lists.

    I'm grouchy about gas prices and the amount of driving we're going to have to do this summer.

    Money, I just keep thinking about money (or the lack thereof!)

    Today, I helped a woman whose brain is full of "how am I going to feed my children?"

    She's grouchy because she doesn't have a car and has to walk everywhere this summer.

    Money, she's just not sure how much longer she can survive the lack thereof.

    Isn't it funny how someone's "lack thereof" is another person's abundance? Today, I recognize that the Lord is the giver of my abundance, and today, I remember that with abundance comes the great and wonderful responsibility to give it away.

    And I will do just that. Today and always.

    Thursday, May 26, 2011

    Yard Sale, Oh my Gah

    It happens every year. Every single year!

    I don't know if it's due to my compulsive need to constantly de-clutter or if it's the prospect of making $10, but every year I feel the need to organize a yard sale, and every year I do and I hate the process, and then the yard sale day comes and at the end I whine to anyone who will listen,

    "If I ever say I want to do another yard sale again, you have permission to slap me."

    Yet as a new summer rolls around Dusty graciously declines to take me up on my offer as I'm sending him texts such as, 

    "How attached are you to our popcorn maker?"
    "When are you going to go through your clothes?"
    "Can we sell the cat?" (That one was a joke... mostly.)

    I mean look at this pitiful creature:

    At any rate this really is all Cousin Hannah's fault. She's the one who tempted me into doing a yard sale with her. I blame her. For everything. Amen.

    Wednesday, May 11, 2011

    Close Call

    Try as I may, I cannot even accurately describe how much this Facebook notification annoys me:

    Facebook, if it weren't for being in youth ministry, we'd have to break up.

    Tuesday, May 10, 2011


    Three--count 'em--- THREE years ago today I graduated from college.

    These two graduated with me. I sure do miss them!

    This is my favorite picture of Garrett & me, because look at him striking a pose! Get it!

    My Dusty did not graduate with us, but he did graduate early, only 7 months later. It's because I'm a cradle robber.

    I was actually on campus today with a friend, and I didn't realize until we had left that today was my three year graduation-versary. I should've known considering I did not recognize hardly anyone and thought it was cute when I saw kids cramming for finals.

    Monday, May 9, 2011

    Tina Fey is I-Am-Not-Kidding One of My Heroes

    I've been meaning to post this ever since I heard Tina Fey's interview on Fresh Air a while back.

    In honor of Mother's Day yesterday and being a daughter who will one day be a mother who seriously, really only wants to have girls (I kid!) I love this excerpt from Tina Fey's new book Bossypants which I do not own yet, but hopefully may receive as an anniversary gift. Dusty, are you reading this?! [Note: There is cussing in this, so if that sort of stuff offends you, don't say you weren't warned.]

    First, Lord: No tattoos. May neither Chinese symbol for truth nor Winnie-the-Pooh holding the FSU logo stain her tender haunches.
    May she be Beautiful but not Damaged, for it’s the Damage that draws the creepy soccer coach’s eye, not the Beauty.
    When the Crystal Meth is offered, may she remember the parents who cut her grapes in half And stick with Beer.
    Guide her, protect her when crossing the street, stepping onto boats, swimming in the ocean, swimming in pools, walking near pools, standing on the subway platform, crossing 86th Street, stepping off of boats, using mall restrooms, getting on and off escalators, driving on country roads while arguing, leaning on large windows, walking in parking lots, riding Ferris wheels, roller-coasters, log flumes, or anything called “Hell Drop,” “Tower of Torture,” or “The Death Spiral Rock ‘N Zero G Roll featuring Aerosmith,” and standing on any kind of balcony ever, anywhere, at any age.
    Lead her away from Acting but not all the way to Finance. Something where she can make her own hours but still feel intellectually fulfilled and get outside sometimes And not have to wear high heels. What would that be, Lord? Architecture? Midwifery? Golf course design? I’m asking You, because if I knew, I’d be doing it!
    May she play the Drums to the fiery rhythm of her Own Heart with the sinewy strength of her Own Arms, so she need Not Lie With Drummers.
    Grant her a Rough Patch from twelve to seventeen. Let her draw horses and be interested in Barbies for much too long, For childhood is short – a Tiger Flower blooming Magenta for one day – And adulthood is long and dry-humping in cars will wait.
    O Lord, break the Internet forever, that she may be spared the misspelled invective of her peers And the online marketing campaign for Rape Hostel V: Girls Just Wanna Get Stabbed.
    And when she one day turns on me and calls me a Bitch in front of Hollister, Give me the strength, Lord, to yank her directly into a cab in front of her friends, For I will not have that Shit. I will not have it.
    And should she choose to be a Mother one day, be my eyes, Lord, that I may see her, lying on a blanket on the floor at 4:50 A.M., all-at-once exhausted, bored, and in love with the little creature whose poop is leaking up its back. “My mother did this for me once,”she will realize as she cleans feces off her baby’s neck. “My mother did this for me.” And the delayed gratitude will wash over her as it does each generation and she will make a Mental Note to call me. And she will forget. But I’ll know, because I peeped it with Your God eyes.
    -Tina Fey

    Saturday, May 7, 2011

    What's Inspiring Me Today

    I did a photo shoot today and it seems like everything went wrong.

    It was cold.
    It was muddy.
    It was threatening to rain.
    The batteries in my flash died mid-shoot.

    Not only that, but I felt like I had hit a creative wall. My head and my heart just weren't into it today, yet I was getting paid to take these photos. I had to capture shots that would deliver good results.

    What inspired me and kept me going was this quote I read this past week from Ira Glass. I'd love to share it with you. It's a little long but so incredibly good:

    "Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me. All of us who do creative work, we get into because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it's just not that good. It's trying to be good, it has potential, but it's not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn't have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know it's normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only be going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I've ever met. It's gonna take a while. It's normal to take a while. You've just gotta fight your way through." ~Ira Glass

    I could not have put it better myself! What draws me to photography is beauty. I want every shot I take to end up looking beautiful. Right now, I'd say 1 out of every 100 shots I'm taking right now are ones that I'm super proud of.

    The hard part is that the only way for my "work to be as good as my ambitions" is to practice a ton. In this case it means being willing to shoot, shoot, shoot and end up with crappy shots day after day, week after week.

    Wednesday, April 27, 2011

    Giving In

    I have held out as long as I could. I was inches away last year from buying a Kindle, but I resisted bought an iPad instead.

    Which has a Kindle app.

    This is all happening concurrently with a challenge I've issued myself to finish all the book series-es I'm in the middle of. The list is quite staggering, but since most of it is "nerd fiction" I'll resist the urge to share with you.

    What brought me to purchase my first e-book last night for use on my iPad's Kindle all was that I needed to read the next book of an unidentified series.

    My local library had it, but it was due weeks ago and I'm third in line to get it, if and when it's ever returned. I began scouring my various book-buying websites ( and realized that with what was available, factoring in shipping & handling, purchasing an e-book was going to save me 40 cents. Other perks: I could get it immediately and wouldn't have to pack it up someday if and whenever we move.

    My kingdom for 40 cents!

    So I gave in. I haven't started reading it yet, but I don't know how I feel about not having the physical copy of a book. As a life long bibliophile I feel like last night an almost imperceivable shift occurred in the atmosphere of our tiny bedroom. Could I be spending my night glued to my iPad instead of a library book?

    Could it be both?

    Sunday, April 24, 2011

    What a Difference

    What a difference a year makes, am I right?

    Don't answer that: of course I am!

    While I don't always notice myself changing year to year, I am constantly seeing it in my niece. I guess that happens when you're two.

    I dug around the archives for some pictures from last year, and I was blown away by the changes I see in her!

    She is still all about baskets, eggs, and candy, except this year she can actually tell you (demand from you) what she wants!

    (Easter 2010)

    (Easter 2011)

    I am all about little girls with big hair accessories! However, Gabby's fashion sense is starting to take on a life of its own, and if there's one thing I love more than over-sized flowers it's the perfectly matched mis-match of a little girl accessorizing herself!

     (Easter, 2010)

    (Easter 2011, with a mouthful of candy)

    I have no caption or little intro for these next two pictures; I just love how much older she looks yet still maintaining her, umm... Gabby-ness!

    (Easter 2010)

    (Easter 2011)

    Monday, April 11, 2011

    Senior Flair is in the Air

    Last weekend I got to spend some time with my sister-in-law Aubri. Mainly, I had a camera stuck in her face the whole time and she was managing all types of terrain in super pointy heels but we did get some wonderful photos!

    Here's a sneak peek:

    Sunday, April 10, 2011

    I am so tired I cannot even think of a title for this post.

    Titles annoy me anyway.

    It has been one of those weeks that was so busy I didn't even know I was busy. Then I looked back and thought, "What in the world have I been doing all week?"

    My Google Reader is up to 1000+ posts.
    I have photos that need editing stat.
    I'm leading not one but two bible studies this week, both of which need significant amounts of preparation.
    I haven't cooked in I-don't-know-how-long.
    I've been reading the same book for almost a month  now.
    My face is breaking out, I have unseemly dark circles under my eyes.
    I haven't been eating right, I haven't been sleeping right, I have been exercising right.

    And really, I hate being busy. Well, this kind of busy. This sneaky kind of busy that comes disguised as the month of April.

    Huh, I just thought of a title for this post:

    Monday, April 4, 2011

    Today I Am...


    sitting on my bed, not in it.

    listening to the storm drone on and on and on and...

    editing my sis-in-law's senior pictures.

    thinking about the future, about what I thought was far a week ago may indeed be drawing near.

    enjoying my new favorite music playing site, Grooveshark.

    thanking the Lord for Dusty because he's not only an all around wonderful guy, but he does laundry, too!

    making plans for our trip out West in May: water Zumba, Royals games, Charming Charlie, family, friends... it's shaping up to be a perfect time.

    positively glowing from being able to sit in with a new friend during her ultrasound--what a great way to kick off my week!

    thinking about what to wear to Cincinnati this weekend for our Welcome Tour of Spring.

    semi-stressing about our youth group's D-Now happening next weekend-- how did that sneak up so quickly?

    Not bad for a Monday, huh?

    Sunday, April 3, 2011

    Even The Bad Ones

    I love the first answer: "You love all your children, even the bad ones."

    Thanks, Lord.

    Friday, April 1, 2011

    Let's Get Rich

    This song is flawless and is my solo soundtrack for the day:

    Wednesday, March 30, 2011


    Be still, my soul; the Lord is on thy side;
    Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain;
    Leave to thy God to order and provide;
    In every change He faithful will remain.
    Be still, my soul; thy best, thy heavenly, Friend
    Through thorny ways leads to a joyful end.

    Be still, my soul; thy God doth undertake
    To guide the future as He has the past.
    Thy hope, thy confidence, let nothing shake;
    All now mysterious shall be bright at last.
    Be still, my soul; the waves and winds still know
    His voice who ruled them while He dwelt below.

    Be still, my soul; the hour is hastening on
    When we shall be forever with the Lord,
    When disappointment, grief, and fear are gone,
    Sorrow forgot, love's purest joys restored.
    Be still, my soul; when change and tears are past,
    All safe and blessed we shall meet at last.

    Hymn #651
    The Lutheran Hymnal
    Text: Psalm 46:10
    Author: Catharine Amalia Dorothea von Schlegel, 1752

    Monday, March 21, 2011


    As I sit here with a used to be a migraine but now downgraded to just plain bad headache I can't help but be happy. Mainly this is because when I go to my handy dandy weather checking website it says that it's a balmy 76 degrees outside.

    Are you kidding me?!

    Spring is definitely here! (I'm ignoring the fact that Thursday's high is only 48.)

    Here is a top ten list of things that I love, love, love about Spring:

    10. My car runs better when it's warm outside. Don't ask me why, perhaps it's because we have this weird telepathic link. You see, I've found that I myself run better when it's warm outside too!

    9. Two words: Open Windows. Because Spring in the Ohio River valley guarantees a constant breeze which I love having swirl around in my house.

    8. Colors! Right now some of my favorite colors to wear are coral, purple, and any shade of green.

    7. Speaking of green, let's hear it for green! The grass is growing and, more importantly, the farmers are sowing. One of my favorite things about living in Kentucky, and in rural Kentucky at that, is the way the fields seem to come alive in a matter of weeks.

    6. Easter is upon us! Christmas is great but Easter has it's own feeling, you know? It's a feeling that encompasses the entire spectrum of emotions: from the despair of Good Friday to the jubilee that comes with Easter Sunday.

    5. Produce: call it wishful thinking but I was at the grocery today and the produce section looked more vibrant than it has in months. And for that, I am very thankful, even if it is just my imagination.

    4. Energy. I have more energy when it's warm. Taking walks, cleaning my house (which, oddly enough, I enjoy), cooking, baking... life is just so much easier when it's 80 degrees outside.

    3. Blanket nights, in which we lay out in our front yard in the evenings on a blanket. Again, because I live out in the middle of nowhere it is for the most part quiet, peaceful. On top of that the stars are so bright! I definitely could not get used to life in or even near a big city.

    2. Sandals. I mean I really love wearing sandals! On top of that I love getting pedicures. It's a win, win.

    1. The number one thing I love about Spring? Spring brings hope. Let's face it, I am the eternal pessimist. But something about Spring seems to diminish that inclination in me, even if just for a while.

    Saturday, March 19, 2011

    Sprout Some Wings and Fly(ing Lesson)

    As promised forever ago, here's a conversation I had with Dusty involving his semi-recent flight lesson. But first, here's one of the three pictures I took:

    (Editor's Note on the photos: When I was a kid my mom would take pictures on our first day of school. It was always by the bus and really embarrassing. Let's just say, that's probably about how Dusty felt posing for these pictures after the flight.)

    Emily: "So Dusty, what did you think about receiving this as a Christmas gift this past year?"

    Dusty: (insert smug chuckle here) That's a little bit of a selfish question isn't it? No, I mean, I was really excited... I had suspicions that that's what I would be getting this year but that didn't diminish my anticipation and my uh... thrill.

    Emily: "Harrumph! Anyway, tell me a little bit about your relationship with airplanes and flying in the past?"

    Dusty: Well really back when I was a kid and even through most of high school I wanted to be a pilot. One of the things that diminished that desire in me may have been when I discovered I couldn't be an air force pilot because of my poor vision. I know as a kid the thought of flying was always something that excited me. I used to study different kinds of planes and learned how to make all kinds of paper airplanes...

    Emily: "So you were a nerd?"

    Dusty: Hush! Anyways, I guess you could say that finally getting to fly an airplane was part of fulfilling a childhood dream of mine. 

    Emily: "What were you thoughts leading up to your flight experience?"

    Dusty: I was looking forward to it. I was definitely keeping close tabs on the weather; just trying to prepare myself mentally to enjoy the experience. 

    Emily: "Did you have any reservations about taking to the skies?"

    Dusty: Not for safety or anything like that... I felt like it would be a good experience. The only reservations I had was knowing I couldn't afford to continue taking lessons. 

    Emily: "Tell me about the flight experience. What was your favorite part?"

    Dusty: It wasn't as stressful as I thought it might be. It was actually quite simple, of course I wasn't learning anything intricate at all, mostly just basic turns and keeping the plane straight and level. My favorite aspect of it was getting to fly over the Ohio River and seeing all the landscape from that perspective.

    (Sorry for the exposure in this shot. As you can tell by his face, he was growing increasingly annoyed/embarrassed and I got flustered. Rookie mistake.)

    Emily: "Speaking of the Ohio River, what was your flight route?"

    Dusty: Well we took off from Bowman Field, and by we I mean the instructor pilot took off from Bowman Field; we flew in the direction of Churchill Downs past the Louisville International Airport. Once we got past the air traffic there he let me take over. We headed North towards the river and once we got to the river he let me turn in and follow the it up about thirty minutes. Then we did a u-turn and headed back to Bowman Field where he took over and landed.

    Emily: "What kind of plane did you fly in?"

    Dusty: I think it was a Cessna. 

    Emily: "Was it awkward flying with the flight instructor?"

    Dusty: Yeah I feel like the flight instructor was about the same age as me. And that might have been a little bit awkward. We got to talking while we were up there and I learned a little bit about him and he told me his ultimate goal was to be a missionary pilot, so it was cool to be able to share that experience with someone I knew was another believer. 

    Emily: "Would you do this again? Do you desire to continue pursuit someday of a pilot's license?"

    Dusty: Umm... yeah I would definitely love to be able to get my pilot's license some day so that option is definitely still on the table. 

    Emily: "Any final thoughts or words?"

    Dusty: Thanks to my beautiful wife for the experience!

    Emily: "Awww thanks honey, way to suck up."

    Thursday, March 17, 2011

    Bad Bloggy, Bad

    The month of March has been horribly busy in a way that means it seems I'm going a thousand miles an hour and literally not doing anything at all.

    I dread what April will bring- I don't have a free day until mid-month. The weekends are also getting a little crowded.

    I'm actually even too busy to be posting at-this-very-moment but I will share an awesome photo my sis-in-law took of her daughter, known around these here parts as Gabby.


    Monday, March 7, 2011

    First Times

    I have never been able to successfully make my favorite breakfast treat, monkey bread.

    Oh you've never heard of monkey bread?

    Why it's just raw dough dipped in butter, rolled in cinnamon sugar and baked in a Bundt pan!

    It's just fuh-reakin' delicious!

    And today was my day, folks! I did it!


    Tuesday, March 1, 2011

    February Loose Ends//Here We Go March!

    Time just really gets away from me sometimes. I cannot believe it is already March, month Trois of an already topsy turvy year.

    Looking back on what I originally planned to post for February, I've noticed there are several loose ends that need tying, namely things like the questionable decision to let a student hairstylist dye my hair and our all-girl middle school retreat.

    All of things could be a blog post in and of themselves, I promise you.

    So! As far as the questionable decision to let a student hairstylist dye my hair I am happy to report I love the results! The student hairstylist in question is none other than my sweet friend Jackie Patty, girlfriend of Cousin Luke.

    She's quite wonderful really. I will definitely be going back to her to get my highlights touched up:

    Dusty and I missed severe weather spotting training, but rest assured we'll be going to the make up meeting either this month or in April!

    How did I spend my Valentine's Day? We went to Green Bamboo. Not beause it was Valentine's Day but because Dusty was going to make me dinner and I dropped a giant crap ball on him when I said, "That's fine honey, as long as it's not Indian. I'm not really feeling curry today."

    Our all-girl middle school extravaganza was a success! I fairly often comment about that particular age group's lack of self-awareness, but who else would have a dance-off to Cotton Eyed Joe in a DQ?

    So, here's what's coming From Me to You this month:

    ~ A review of some of my current favorite things, including but not limited to music, books, movies, and food. Mmm... food.

    ~ My wonderful love Dusty will check in with a guest blog telling everyone about his recent flying lesson at Bowman Airfield. Here's a hint: it was quasi-awkward as only things involving Dusty can be.

    ~ Jury Duty picks up into full swing this month. Will I get chosen to serve? We'll find out!

    ~ What do you do every Wednesday night? I'll have a post about the phenomenon that is Game Night, in which myself and a few select friends find ourselves playing cards until 1 in the morning. It's legit, ya'll!

    ~ We are getting a special delivery at the end of this month, all the way from Kansas City, Missouri! You'll see what it is along with a list of reasons why it's so awesome.

    ~ Spring is coming and I can hardly contain myself! (!) I'll post about things I love doing when the weather gets warm.

    ~ Did you know I also have another blog running in which I post my pictures involving all-things Kentucky? You can check it out here. Follow me or add me to your RSS readers! I don't post all the time but I also plan to change that.

    Happy March to you!

    Monday, February 28, 2011


    My mom is awesome.

    All while my brother and I were growing up she worked a full-time job, kept a spotless house, made a hot dinner every night, and was active in participating in ministry with my dad.

    But all those reasons put together aren't why I say today that my mom is awesome.

    You see, she took to heart the verse in Proverbs that says, "Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older they will not leave it."

    I've been feeling pretty down lately, and yesterday seemed to be what it took to push me over the edge. I emailed my mom about it, and her response, while it may not have been exactly what I wanted to hear, was way better than that: it was Truth itself.

    Today I am thankful to have a mother that recognizes truth and still speaks it into the hearts of her kids. I want to be a mom like that someday.

    So, from her speaking truth to me I began to write out truths of my own. If any of my five or so readers needs encouraging, here's some truth that the Lord encouraged me with today:

    "The Lord is not an unreasonable king. He will not fly into a blind rage when you are honest with him about your feelings. He does not seek our destruction, but in fact gave of Himself to avoid it. The hidden things in the Lord are good things; He tells us exactly what our hearts need to know. He does not play the cat-and-mouse game with his kids. He has a reason and motivation for everything. His intentions are perfectly aligned with his actions and his actions are perfectly aligned with His heart."

    Sunday, February 27, 2011

    We Still Got It

    I love us.

    **sidenote: the bottom middle picture of us grimacing begs some explanation; one day while eating dinner we got to talking about what the world would be like if everyone had really creepy, terrible smiles. if we lived in such a world, this is what our smiles would be.**

    **sidenote2: the finger headed for my nose is not dusty's...**

    Friday, February 25, 2011

    I Want, I Want, I Want, I Want

    I want one of these:

    The Fuji X100

    I have really expensive taste, huh? Maybe the reviews will be horrible and I won't want one anymore. But probably not.

    Check it out here.

    Tuesday, February 22, 2011

    Non-Fiction: It's Making a Come Back

    Sadly, I still need to compile my list of the books I read last year to share on the ole Bloggy.

    However, I'm pretty sure this year I've already read more non-fiction than I did in 2010, and for that I'm proud.

    I'm currently reading The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. Here's what the cover looks like, so you can judge the book:

    First let me say that I know a lot of people had reservations about this book because it's about science-y stuff. Luckily, I'm a total science nerd when it doesn't involve me actually doing the science (a.ka. chemistry homework, A&P lab, etc.)

    This book is about the HeLa cell, and about the woman they took those cells from. I love that Ms. Skloot not only dove into the science of what actually happened with her cells but took time to search out the Lackses themselves and to dig deeper into the story, making it much more touching and, well, human.

    I'm only on the third chapter, so a glowing review may be premature but I. Love. This. Book.

    Read it! Except don't expect to get it from the Meade County Public Library right now, because yours truly has the only copy in her purse.

    Wednesday, February 16, 2011

    Stuck Inside No More!

    So today I get to hang out with that adorable niece of mine, Gabby.

    You know, the one who saw the sweater I picked out for her this morning and exclaimed, "Oh, cute!"

    The one who is obsessed with Tinkerbell.

    The one who saw me write her name and proceeded to "write" mine next to it, pointing and saying, "Gabby. Emmy. Gabby. Emmy."

    I digress.

    Hanging out with Gabby on any given weekday involves watching Sesame Street, especially the half hour that Elmo's World is on. That and watching her "play" her recorder. Again, I digress.

    I say all this to explain that I normally wouldn't even know that Jason Mraz ever sang on Sesame Street, let alone performed a perfect let's kick winter in the face song. And I realize by posting this on my blog I must automatically sacrifice my "coolness" card.

    Luckily for me, I was forced to give that up years ago!

    That's it! We're headed to the park.

    Monday, February 14, 2011

    Who is Arcade Fire?

    I'll be the first to admit that I'm not a fan of the Grammy's. It has become a "sinkhole that rewards glitter over talent and now spends more time showing off than handing out trophies." I couldn't have put it better myself. 

    However, I see a ray of hope what with Arcade Fire's win last night for Album of the Year. 

    I realize this has created a tidal wave of backlash from haters/Lady Gaga/Eminem/Katy Perry/Lady Antebellum fans.

    Fortunately, I'm not a fan of any of these other "artists," so I couldn't care less. 

    Here's something I've posted on the old Bloggy before, but just goes to further my point about how awesome this band is:

    I've been pouring over this Tumblr today, looking at all the people who are upset about Arcade's win. They're all really classy, let me just say. If you're a fan, take a look. It's quite comical and I only chose ones that I didn't have to edit. Apparently Arcade Fire's win and the "F" word go hand in hand. Here are a few gems:


    Tuesday, February 8, 2011

    Too, Too Good-- The Eternal Pessimist's Point of View

    Some Big Things are happening around the Snyder household!

    I was texting back and forth with my cousin today about some of these Big Things. Here's a little snippet of the conversation:

    Cousin: "It seems like everything is lining up in your favor!"
    Me: "I know... almost sounds too good huh?"
    Cousin: "Almost, but not quite. :)"

    You see, I'm an eternal pessimist. I remember being that way ever since I was a little kid. But now I'm asking myself a question:

    "If good things come from the Lord, and the Big Things happening in the Snyder household are good things then how can I shoot down something from the Lord so quickly?"

    The fact of the matter is, when the Lord starts moving and doing stuff in your life, he is the embodiment of Good. And he is too good to us. Too good to be true.

    Sunday, February 6, 2011

    While the Wound is Still Fresh

    Oh the agony of defeat. It stings. It burns.

    (Melodramatic much?)

    You see, I married into a Steelers lovin' family. And tonight they lost the Super Bowl.

    So you can understand my dismay.

    Instead of lamenting the coulda, woulda, shouldas I'll instead let my photo montage speak for itself.

    I've titled it Faces of Defeat.

    Prepare yourself folks, this is perhaps the saddest of them all:

    Poor Dusty, lovingly folding the Steelers quilt his mother made for him when he was a child.

    (OK seriously, how dramatic! I should win an award.)

    This Will Be My Child

    I love this video.

    Maybe I'm behind and everyone has already seen it but I don't care, I just have to share!

    This is especially near and dear to my heart because of Dusty's undying and secretive love for all things Star Wars.

    I'm sure this will be my child someday. And that we will own a Volkswagen.

    Saturday, February 5, 2011

    Maybe There Is, But Yes, Definitely There Is

    I'm Captain Youtube lately huh? Well that's fine with me if it's fine with you'ins.

    I've been re-visiting my collection of Sara Groves' music as I do pretty much once or twice a year. (Is it really re-visiting then? Who knows.)

    If you don't have any of her albums you should get you some. Like now.

    I remember coming across this song of hers while in high school called "Maybe There's a Loving God." Here, listen to it while you read this rest of this post so your random two minutes on my blog won't be an utter waste of time:

    So this song used to make me a teensy bit uncomfortable back then. How could a Christian singer write lyrics about doubt and her wondering as to whether there maybe is a loving God somewhere out there?

    She must be referring to someone else right? That's the thought I conjured to allow this song passage into my heart. For what it's worth, I'm glad I did.

    Because now, ten years later, I've definitely had those doubts and I'm not too proud to admit, some lately.

    I mean we're a month into 2011 and already:

    Not to mention hitting the one year mark from the earthquake in Haiti, bombings in airport, unrest in other parts of the Middle East (Lebanon, Tunisia anyone?), and the list could go on and on.

    I totally understand where this song is coming from. It may not even have been her intent when writing it, I don't know. But it is how it speaks to me.

    There is nothing wrong with "thinking, reasoning, questioning, and praying." If there were I'd be in a heap o' trouble.

    I feel like the mark of a mature walk with the Lord is one that has questioned and wondered if this whole Jesus/God/Christian thing is really all it's cracked up to be.

    John the Baptist did it. And so can we.

    However, I think we're secure in those questions because I've always, always come back to yes. Yes, there is a loving God.

    And he's way better than we could ever imagine.

    Thursday, February 3, 2011

    Photography Class, Part Deux

    As part of my photography-themed Birth-mas gifts, Dusty got me a new photo editing software.

    We got it loaded on my Lappy where it has remained virtually untouched ever since.

    To be honest, it's because I just have no clue what I'm doing when it comes to this kind of stuff.
    But tonight in photography class, someone mentioned that they had been able to learn all kinds of neat tricks using tutorials they had found on the YouTubes.

    I tried my hand at it tonight and came up with two successes! Unfortunately, I'm tired, so I'll post the most obvious success story.

    Disclaimer: I in no way, shape, or form condone the kind of photo editing I'm about to show. I'm not a fan at all. However, a surprising number of folks have asked me if I know how to do it. Up until now I happily said "nope!" But now, well... gah!



    I specifically remember telling my wedding photographer, the lovely Brenda A., that this was one editing trick I did not want up her sleeves.

    What say you? Is there a time and a place for selective coloring?