Category Archives: Friends

When Football Makes You Cry

Football season is officially over and I am not one bit sad about it.  Monday nights just got a heck of a lot more entertaining now that Monday Night Football has been replaced by Monday Night Bachelor.  (Go, Lauren B!)

Despite my apathy towards football, there was one game this season that I’ll probably never forget.  Actually, just one play from one game.

You’ll probably never guess the game or the play so I’ll just show it to you.  It starts at 1:35.

Did you watch it?  If you didn’t, go back and watch it.  It’s only a minute and you need to see this “Holy mackerel, what a play!” moment.

Just to be clear, I don’t care about UCLA or ASU football.  Couldn’t care less who won the game.  But this play happened four months ago, and I can still see myself sitting on the couch next to Paul watching it for the first time.  Crying big fat tears.

Paul heard me sniffle, looked over at the tears streaming down my cheeks and and laughed.  Because really- who cries during a football game that you care nothing about?

But I tend to think in metaphors.

So while everyone else saw Kalen Ballage scoring a remarkable touchdown, I saw myself.  I know it seems ridiculous.  I mean, at first glance, Kalen and I don’t seem to share much in common other than our pierced ears and wrinkly foreheads:

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But God was teaching me a very important lesson through Kalen’s touchdown.

The announcer said, “You get the sense that all the frustration from a disappointing opening four weeks of the season, was taken out on that one run…”

When I watched this game, I was sitting on our couch in the middle of my own very disappointing season.  I was sad and frustrated with life and angry with God. So very angry with Him.

But I wasn’t alone in my sadness.  And God used this touchdown to remind me that I wasn’t alone.

Kalen Ballage could not have scored this touchdown on his own.  Left to his own devices, UCLA would have pummeled him easily.  He was surrounded by gold helmets.  Three of the enemy were trying to pull him down and he was stuck running backwards.  Screen Shot 2016-02-16 at 8.42.19 AM

He should have been tackled.

At that point in the year, I too felt surrounded by the enemy- His lies were so loud and my sadness was so painful.

I should have been tackled.

But Kalen wasn’t just surrounded by his enemies.  His friends were there too.  His friends came from every side and PUSHED him towards his goal:

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I saw those giants surrounding Kalen, shoving him towards the end zone, and instantly thought of these girls:
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They are not quite as beefy, but during my sadness, they refused to let the enemy have the last word. They surrounded me with words of comfort and encouragement and prayer.   They talked me through the pain and pushed me towards God right when I was feeling betrayed by Him.

Plus, they can be pretty tough when they need to be:

Snapseed

And when Kalen was struggling to stay on his feet, when he was about to stumble just short of his goal, one friend grabbed him in a bear hug of an embrace, kept him upright, and literally pulled him into the end zone.

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I watched this play and didn’t see Kody Kohl helping his friend score a touchdown.

No, I saw my sister grabbing me around the waist and refusing to let me fall into sadness and loneliness.  She forced me to stay on my feet, to keep going and to fall into the arms of God.

And look at Kalen’s friends celebrating afterwards:

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This victory was not Kalen’s alone.

It belonged to all those guys who refused to give up on him.  When they ran to embrace Kalen and celebrate with him afterwards, I was in full blown sobs because I hadn’t reached that victory yet.

I wasn’t celebrating God’s goodness.

But as I watched those giant men dance and hug and rejoice, I realized that one day that would be me and my friends.  One day, I too would be celebrating.

At that point in my life, I was still running precariously backwards, being pulled by the enemy and close to stumbling.  But I was supported by my friends and the end zone was in sight.

Today, I am celebrating.

Today I have experienced the thrill of victory- of clinging to God even when His ways seem wrong and confusing.  But back in October, when I didn’t have victory yet, God was reminding me that celebration was coming.  I wasn’t alone and the team He had handpicked for me wasn’t going to let me fall.

My team is not a bunch of burly men with bulging biceps, but they are still pretty dang hardcore:photo-3

I am who I am today because these girls force me to keep after my goal and keep pursuing my God, even during disappointing seasons.

I hope that you too are supported by a team of people who will not let you fall.  I hope that you have friends and family around you who will keep you on your feet and push and pull you towards Jesus in those moments when you feel like walking away.  And I hope that you realize these teammates are a sweet gift from God.

One of His sweetest gifts, if you ask me.

Home vs. Costa Rica

This is the last post about Costa Rica.  I promise.  When you embark on such an epic adventure like the one we went on, it’s hard to stop telling stories.  But I assure you that these are the last ones.  

I’ve learned this summer that there is great danger in traveling to other countries.  I’m not talking about the danger of armed robbers or drinking the water and getting explosive diarrhea.  I’m talking about the danger of comparison.  It’s dangerous to go to a country and compare it to your home country.  Dangerous because it can taint your trip and/or your time back at home if you focus on what the other place does better.

It’s easy to encounter inconvenience in another country and think, “This would never happen in America.” Likewise, it’s easy to return home and think, “I wish America was more like such and such place.”

Having traveled a bit, I’m learning that the key to comparing countries is to focus on what you appreciate rather than pointing out the crappy aspects of a nation (because let’s face it, we’ve all got major crap in our country).  And when I return home, I’m being intentional about not griping about what America lacks and instead focusing on the great things we do have.  That being said, the following are 10 areas I can’t help but compare when considering Costa Rica and Southern California.

1. The roads

Home: Sure, we have crazy frustrating traffic and aggressive drivers who are quick to throw the bird, but we also have an efficient road system with clearly marked signs, paved roads, and addresses.

Costa Rica: Okay, so yeah, it would have been a touch easier if our destinations had actual addresses, but then we would have missed out on the adventure of looking for a “giant blue billboard” which was our cue to turn right.  And rather than complain about the windy mountain roads, we found joy (and a little bit of terror) in crossing rivers like this:

2. The flora

Home: I love the palm trees.  Admittedly, I probably love them a little too much.  I’ve lived here all my life and still take pictures of them lining the freeways.  I later delete them so people won’t scroll through my camera roll and think, “Wow, Katie’s life is so pathetic.  She has tons of pictures of freeways and her cat.”

Costa Rica:  I’m not typically one to take picture of plants and flowers, but holy moly, the variety in this country is astounding.  The following were all found in the yard of our rental house:

3. The churches

Home: I love my church.  Really love it.  There’s something cool about going to the church you grew up in.  I can still see myself in the pews playing tic-tac-toe and eating Mambas with my siblings while some boring old man droned on and on about Jesus.  (The boring old man was Chuck Swindoll.  Gosh I wish I had been old enough to understand him!)  The teaching today is just fantastic, so if you’re ever looking for something to listen to while you drive or run, check out Mike’s sermon series HERE.  I highly recommend the most recent series about the Holy Spirit.

Costa Rica–  In the first town we stayed in, we were serenaded every night by a tiny church of about 15 people singing worship songs for hours.  Literal hours.  You guys, they sang , “This is the Air I Breathe” for no less than 40 minutes.  I’m not exaggerating.  What they lacked in ability, they made up for in endurance.  It was truly quite impressive. The Christians in Drake Bay proved that they are seriously desperate for Jesus.  We, on the other hand, were desperate for them to sing a new song.

In the second location, I woke up at 5 AM on Sunday morning because a woodpecker tricked me into thinking we had visitors knocking at the door.  Since I was up, I went for a early run and discovered the town church:

The doors were locked, but that didn’t keep me from snooping around and taking pictures of the view:

The bench obsession continues

4. The car washes

Home- I love those $5 drive-thru car washes.  Does anyone else still get super excited every time you go through one?  When my friend Nirupa was visiting from India, I took her through one of these because I think they are that cool.  I realize now that it was probably a strange thing to do.

Costa Rica–  Costa Ricans don’t need fancy technology.  They improvise:

Parked in the middle of the stream washing both the inside and the outside of his car.  Brilliant. 

5. The breakfasts

Home– Breakfast is my favorite meal.  I love sugar cereals and some of the only things I know how to make in the kitchen are omelets, french toast, pancakes, and smoothies.  When I transferred high schools, some kids knew me as “burrito girl” because I brought a giant breakfast burrito to class every Wednesday.  So yes, breakfast is kind of my thing.  And I’ve had some memorable ones this summer.  The girls cross-country team had a pancake breakfast after practice that was both fun and delicious:

Another breakfast highlight this summer came while eating my CTC (Cinnamon Toast Crunch) and seeing this in the backyard:

My grandpa reading the bible to my grandma.  

How sweet is that?  Grandma, bet you didn’t realize I snuck a picture:)

Costa Rica– Breakfast is made exponentially better when Tatiana comes to your house to prepare it and serves all the local favorites: 

which we devoured while enjoying the view:

Well, everyone but Katie enjoyed the view.  She kept her eyes closed the entire time. 

6. The restaurants

Home- I love eating out.  I do it more than most because cooking for 1 sucks and Chipotle never gets old.  When my friend Christy returned from 3 years in Madrid, she went on and on about how great it is that there are so many good places to eat so conveniently located.  I may have mocked her for being so excited about restaurants, but I too appreciate all the good, cheap food.

Costa Rica– I loved eating at local dives like this pizza joint where there is one worker who made the pizzas on his grill:

At the second spot, we discovered that the only restaurant in town serves AMAZING food and offers an AMAZING view of the entire valley.  Sure, Trent discovered a shockingly large beetle in his rice, but that didn’t slow any of us down. Our cook was also our waiter and the owner of the joint and we were certain he must be cousins with the “most interesting man in the world.” 

Isn’t the view breathtaking? 

7. The swimming

Home- I love swimming in my parents’ pool with my nephews.  This summer I taught Vander my old synchronized swimming routine:

because everyone had one of those, right?

And I laughed every time Logan did the dead man’s float:

Costa Rica- The water was almost warmer than a bath and turned out to be a perfect place to hang out and do hand-stands:

And who doesn’t love a real-life lazy river? 

8. The porches

Home- I love sitting on my parent’s front porch.  There’s something comforting about watching the sun set in the place you’ve watched it set for nearly 30 years.

Costa Rica- Both houses we stayed at had pretty insane porches.  The kind of porches on which you want to fall asleep:

and cut fruit:

The kind of porches from which you can see volcanos:

and lay in hammocks while enjoying the view: 

9. The beaches

Home- California beaches make for some prime people-watching.  So many tattoos in so many wrong places.  It’s wonderful.

Then, if you hang around long enough, the people will clear out and you can climb the lifeguard tower and watch a fantastic sunset:

And if you’re in the mood for whale-watching instead of people-watching, you can board a boat and see blue whales and dolphins:

Costa Rica– This is not the ideal spot for people-watching, but if you like that whole “beautiful, isolated, they-should-film-the-Bachelor-here” type of beach, you might enjoy them too:

Our house in the one with the pointed roof on the right.  We didn’t hate it.

10. The company

Home– It’s no secret that I enjoy my family.  We live in a 10 mile radius of each other and get together all the time.  This is why the 14 of us spent a week together in a cabin at Bass Lake and never got annoyed.  Check that, my mom did get a bit annoyed when we kept talking about the cd my dad found in the player called “Erotic Moods.”  But apart from that, we got along wonderfully.

Costa Rica– This country was crazy beautiful, but it would not have been nearly as much fun if not for the weirdos in the group.  We created a surprising amount of inside jokes in just 7 days and memories that will last till we’re old and grey.  Here they are, both the red and blue teams, my traveling companions and Costa Rican family:

Arizona 

“S yeah!  Head butts happen. Nice to meet you, Heather. Here comes the BOOM!” (all said with zero inflection in voice)

Cran Sauce 

The official scum of the earth (known for her love of dogs and hatred of fast horses)

Wolverine

Our presidente, fish-fryer, translator, planner, and jelly-fish-stings-don’t-hurt-me-bad-ass.

El Chupacabra

Our photographer, navigator, holder of things, and official grass spotter. The most low-maintenance gluten-free gal you’ll ever find.

Ginger Jelly 

” Livin’ the dream”

Lone Ranger 

“Oh yeah!  Si se puede!” 

This was the type of group that strangers want to hug:

I can’t say I blame them.

The truth behind vacation pictures

I don’t know about yours, but my Instagram feed this summer has been kind of ridiculous.  I have been constantly seeing pictures from around the world- Stonehenge, Mona Lisa, Machu Picchu, Filipino rain forests, Hawaiian waterfalls, Costa Rican sunsets- you get the idea.  I’ve sat in the dentist office scrolling through pictures of sailing trips, surfing trips, and Portland trips with Voodoo donuts (that look life-changing by the way).  Apart from all the “throw back Thursdays”, and baby pics, my feed has mostly been comprised of beautiful beaches, majestic mountain peaks, and peaceful pools.  Well, there was this pool too:

While pictures from concerts and vacations are certainly interesting and I “like” them, I really do, I also find myself battling with my old friend Lady Envy.  Have you ever met her?  She’s horrible.

I know that it’s silly to envy other’s trips- especially since I’ve been blessed with a fun and full summer of my own.  But I still can’t help but look at other people’s Costa Rica pictures and think, “Wow, I wish I had seen that waterfall.”  Ridiculous, I know.

However, I’ve also been learning that pictures do not tell the whole story.  We post what we want people to see and don’t always mention the story behind the picture, but it seems there is ALWAYS a story behind the picture.

My friend Lesley reminded me of this truth when she posted THIS MOVING STORY about the picture of her husband and daughter taken shortly after he was diagnosed with cancer.  My friend Christy reminded me of this truth when I asked about her trip to Austria that looked absolutely amazing.  She laughed and admitted that it was beautiful but she failed to post any pictures of the kids crying in the car for five hours.

So do pictures lie or do they tell the truth?

I think they do both.

Pictures give a glimpse of one real moment and tell one small piece of a story.  But it’s a small piece of a large story.

The stories behind the picture are sometimes sad, sometimes surprising, and sometimes downright funny.  So in honor of telling the whole story, allow me to share a few of my summer pictures and tell you the whole story behind them, the REAL story if you will.

Let’s start in Alaska…

I felt a bit like a phony when I posted this on Facebook:

Because while I did indeed encounter this bear while in Alaska, the moment was not nearly as cool as it appears.

If you could see this picture from the bear’s point of view, you would laugh.  Not only was there an electric fence between us, there were about 30 of us tourists, squeezed shoulder to shoulder oooooohing and ahhhhhing as the bear came near.

So while I made it look as if I was alone in the middle of the Alaskan wilderness, armed only with my courage and my iPhone, the real story is that I was holding Jenny’s boy Asher and laughing with the German next to me about how we hoped the fence was turned on.  Jenny was nowhere to be seen because she was racing to the toilet with her daughter Lola, who was still mastering the control of her bladder.

Which leads me to my next picture…

I posted this on Instagram and let everyone believe I was on a beautiful, peaceful road trip with one of my best friends in the world.  That part of the story is true.  It was beautiful and it was peaceful and Jenny is the type of friend who will lend me her toothbrush and her underwear.

But the rest of the story?

The part that I only shared with our close friends?

Well,that part is not quite as picturesque: 

This is the reality of what road trips with potty-training toddlers actually looks like.

Next, some pictures from Costa Rica.  Sorry if you’re sick of these by now.

First picture: It appears that we are on a beautiful, relaxing ride through the rain forest and down to the beach…

But shortly after this picture was snapped, the three of our horses took off trotting and left the group.  They knew they had a bunch of suckers on their backs so they turned onto the beach and broke into a gallop.  This was fun, albeit slightly terrifying since there were low-hanging branches and decapitation seemed like a very real possibility.

Kylee was not okay with this and could not get her horse to stop, so she proceeded to swing her leg over and then JUMPED, TUCKED, AND ROLLED onto the beach as her horse sped down the coast.  We certainly weren’t laughing right away because it was freaking scary.  But after about 5 minutes I couldn’t hold it in any longer and burst into a fit of the giggles that continues every time I replay that jump in my mind.

Our next adventure was a boat ride out to an island in order to snorkle:

Katie snapped this picture moments before we met Heather.  Oh Heather, that wonderful woman walking towards us in the oversized red t-shirt.  I saw her coming and jokingly broke into a rendition of “Lady in Red”, not realizing that said lady in red was about to be joining our snorkel adventure.

Imagine a person who knows everything about just about everything and has zero social awareness.  That, my friends, was Heather.  She certainly made for a memorable afternoon adventure.  I mean, come on:

How could she not?

This next picture is pretty deceptive and really only tells a very small piece of the story:

I know, I know.  I look like a cougar laughing it up with a college kid.

For the record, I was laughing because I felt my friends laughing at me as I talked with Mike about the mystery meat we were about to eat.  Mike rode in our van to the river where we rafted and it never even crossed my mind as being strange that he never removed his sunglasses.  Until he did…

Guys, there were audible gasps from our group.  Poor Mikey had developed some kind of terrible tropical infection and his left eye had swollen to an ungodly size.  It still makes me cringe just thinking about it.

Finally, I like to think I’m fairly brave so I really must explain the story behind this picture:

What you are witnessing here is a snapshot of me giving in to peer pressure.  Our guide was a little crazy and made us do some crazy things.  (ie- wear war paint under our eyes and leaves in our helmets and go down rapids with our eyes closed or while standing up).  Mauricio also thought it would be fun to make us each sit on the front edge of the boat while going down rapids.

This was great fun when everyone else was going.  But when it was my turn, I screamed louder than I think I ever have.  Right after this picture was taken, a giant wave sent me flipping backwards with so much water up my nose that I think it came out my ears.  I glared at Mauricio who said, “Whoops, I didn’t think the drop was going to be that big.”  How comforting.

My last trip this summer was to Bass Lake.  It was full of fantastic memories like this one with my sisters:

But what this picture doesn’t show is that I was still a bit irritated with my brothers which is why I was eager to hang out with my sisters instead.

Earlier that morning Trent threw a pancake at my face so hard that it made me cry.  It was awkward for everyone involved- even for Travis who was secretly video-taping the whole thing.  Sure, I had thrown egg at Trent’s face earlier, but that did not warrant a hard slap in the face with a dense pancake.

The last picture is one I forgot to post on Instagram. 

I relaxed in the front of the boat while my uncle Tom took us for a ride around the lake and my cousin Brady entertained us:

However, if we had gone before 1 PM and taken pictures, you wouldn’t have been able to see the mountain or much of the water.  What my clear pictures fail to show is how each morning the air was so thick with nasty smoke from a nearby fire that it was hard to see and breathe.

Clearly, pictures only tell a small part of a large story.  I hope I can remember this as I see more vacation pictures and as I go through each day.  Because each day, even if it seems boring or mundane, truly is just a small part of a much larger story.

Playing with trash

All I remember about my 10th birthday party was that my friends and I played with trash.  Literal trash.  Empty Squeeze-It bottles to be exact.

My dad was in charge of games so this really shouldn’t have come as a surprise.  This from the man who once cleaned my twin brothers by removing their diapers and squirting their buns with the hose. Continue reading

Unseen things

One of my favorite things in life is when the unseen things are finally seen- when surprises are revealed and things that were once hidden are discovered.  Costa Rica was full of such wondrous surprises.  They were lurking behind leaves and concealed around corners- surprises just waiting to be noticed and marveled at.

For instance, one might look at a tree and see only a tree.  But if you really looked at it, really studied its branches, you would find this guy: Continue reading

Running in a Pack

In March I ran the LA marathon.  I’ve hesitated to write about it because A) life has been busy and B) I don’t want to be one of those people who talk about their work-outs all the time.  I’m writing now because my Talbot classes are done and I just finished grading my last English essay EVER (Hallelujah for World History!), so I have some free time.  Plus, I learned some truly valuable lessons I want to pass along.

These are the lessons you won’t typically read about in a Runner’s magazine.

Lesson # 1- If you don’t prevent chafing, life will be miserable. Continue reading

Katie Confessions #8-13 “Solvang Edition”

I think and say and do a lot of weird things.  I suspect you do too.  So as I share my confessions, I’d love if you would share a “me too” every once in awhile so I don’t feel like quite such a spaz.

***

Two weekends ago I went on a trip to Solvang with some colleagues/friends, and since what happens in Solvang doesn’t have to stay in Solvang, now I’ve got some confessions to make.

# 8 I forgot that I had already made other plans for the weekend.

Have you ever done this?  Double-booking yourself is the worst. I felt TERRIBLE for standing up my dear friend, Lori.  Surely other people have had to send texts like this:

Not only did I stand her up, I made her share a bed with a cat who likes to sleep on top of people and pee in their suitcases.  I am the worst.

# 9 I went wine-tasting.

If you know me in real life, you understand why this is a confession.  I don’t drink wine.  Actually, I kind of hate it.

And yet, this was my SECOND time wine-tasting.

The first time was five years ago when I was in Cape Town over Spring Break.  (Ew, don’t I sound so pretentious?  I just can’t figure out a non-snooty way to start this story.)

Judith and Lisa are friends I met in Mozambique who are two of the smartest people I know.  They also happen to be super goofy, so naturally I love them.  Lisa’s boyfriend came to visit her and the four of us when to South Africa for the week.  Neither Lisa nor I enjoy wine, but somehow our group ended up at a vineyard.  While we probably should have been acting a bit more sophisticated at a fancy vineyard, we chose to show our true colors and had a grand ol’ time “sniffing” wine and sneaking grapes off the vine:

Five years later and I found myself on yet another wine-tasting trip.  And I actually drank the wine this time.  I  went because I love Solvang and the gang of women and because I didn’t have any other plans.  Oh wait.

Even though I still will choose an ice cold Coke over a fine glass of wine, I had a fabulous time wine-tasting.  I didn’t want to gag every time I tried a sip, so I suppose that is an improvement.  Plus, we got a tour of the vineyard and learned all about the wine-making process at the Firestone Winery.

That’s right, ladies, as in Andrew Firestone.  His family sold the winery right after his season of The Bachelor, but our tour guide knew Andrew and gave us the scoop on the show.  Apparently, the producers told him who to kiss and who to send home!  Are you as appalled by that news as I am?  I mean, sure, I always suspected it, but having it confirmed has really made me look at Sean’s season in a whole new way.  (Surely he’s being forced to keep Tierra, the drama queen.)

Saarloos and Sons was the next winery we went to, and it was awesome for a number of reasons.  First, Susan Saarloos is a friend from church and I want to be like her when I grow up. Her family owns the place and her son made us feel like VIPs.  And get this- instead of pairing wines with fruit and cheese, they use CUPCAKES!!! Pure genius.  Pure sugary, sweet genius!

Plus, they have this cool photo booth that takes fun pictures.

#10 I went in the hotel jacuzzi in a sports bra and undies.

In my defense, it was Erica’s idea.  And it was a brilliant one.  Luckily, no one joined us except one creepy middle-aged Asian woman who stood outside the pool smiling at us for an uncomfortable amount of time.

# 11 I imagined being murdered.

There are so many awful stories about runners being assaulted, so when I found myself on this path:

completely out of civilization and screaming distance, I couldn’t help but consider how easy it would be to kill me and hide my body. The upside to thinking about your impending death is that it forces you to run much faster.

# 12 I had this for breakfast:

Yes, that is a scoop of ice cream.  I want to hug whoever thought to serve ice cream with waffles.  And that’s saying a lot because I am NOT a hugger.

The next day’s breakfast consisted of Danish pancakes with cinnamon apples followed by a large chunk of peanut butter/chocolate fudge for the road and a cupcake in Santa Barbara.

I may require an intervention for my sugar problem.

# 13 I am this friend:

You know, the one who falls asleep on long car rides.  To quote Michelle Tanner, “How rude!”

Luckily, Becky is the type of friend who doesn’t begrudge us for sleeping while she drives.  Instead she took a picture of our drooling faces and put it on Instagram. Well-played.

The best part of these confessions is when you make them too.  For instance, in THIS POST my friend Tom made a super funny confession.  To fully appreciate it, you must understand that Tom is a posh Brit and therefore he calls the bathroom the “loo.”

So how ’bout it?  Do you ever double-book yourself or drink wine even though you hate it? Have you gone swimming in a public pool in your undies or thought about your own murder?  Do you have a slight sugar addiction or fall asleep in cars?  This is a judge-free zone, so any and all confessions are welcome and appreciated.

 

A Feces Fiasco

Even though it’s still 90 degrees where I live, my summer is officially over.  I know this because I’m setting my alarm again and no longer watching episodes of Friday Night Lights until 2 in the morning.  And I know it’s over because I’m thinking about lesson plans and seating charts rather than what book I should read next or where I should go for ice cream.  The end of summer also brings an end to my hiatus from this blog.  I haven’t yet figured out what weekly posts I’ll be doing, but I’m kicking off the start to a new blog year with a story from summer.  Enjoy.

***

There are certain moments in life that will never be forgotten.  Snapshots that will never fade or disappear despite the passing years.  Some of these moments involve a white dress and an aisle.  Others involve a hospital room and a crying newborn.  I’ve yet to walk down the aisle or birth a child, but I have collected several of these unforgettable moments and have stored them in the parts of my brain where they’ll never collect dust.  The most recent of these moments happened this summer while I was in Alaska.  It involved neither a husband nor a baby, but rather… a sewage tank. Continue reading

Lindsay’s Visit and the Runs

My brothers used to be notorious for making bets and then wiggling out of them when they lost with lame excuses like, “I never said WHEN I’d pay you” or “I said 10 DOLL HAIRS.”  I’m going to steal one from their playbook and instead of apologizing for not posting last Friday, tell you that “I never said which Friday I would post.”  Lame, I know, but I’m doing it anyways.  And I know I said I’d finish the second half of the post about fixing our eyes on Jesus, but that’s coming later.

The fact of the matter is life has simply gotten in the way.  My dear friend Lindsay came to visit this past week, and I blame her for my unnecessary shopping sprees and for my lack of writing lately.  Lindsay visited last summer which I wrote about HERE and this summer’s visit had a number of similarities.  Again we ate tons of junk food (five burgers in seven days).  Again we went to several different beaches (Venice, Dog, Huntington, Balboa, Dana Point, San Clemente, and Newport). And again I peer pressured Lindsay into doing things that scared her.  (Because I’m just that kind of friend.)

I had never been to Venice Beach but had heard about all the freaks and wanted to see them.  They didn’t disappoint.  Between the potheads offering to make us legal and add some “greenery to our scenery”, the speedo-clad men pumping iron on Muscle Beach, and the tattoo parlors on every corner, we basically felt out of place the entire day. Continue reading

Friday Favorites- Chocolate Milk, Waffles,and Oozing Blisters

This will be my last Friday Favorites post for a bit.  Summer has officially begun, so I’m thinking about starting a different series or two and changing things up.  These changes will most likely also involve a new header on the blog because, quite frankly, I’m sick of my face.  So expect some changes coming your way very soon.  But first, here’s the final Friday Favorites list:

Favorite Coca Cola commercial

If you have 1 minute and 31 seconds, watch THIS COMMERCIAL.  It made me happy to be human.

Favorite marriage proposal witnessed while running 

Confession: When I was far away and couldn’t see the writing but saw there was some type of drawing, about 10 seconds went by where I thought I was witnessing some type of message written by aliens.  I’m not kidding.

Favorite marriage proposal witnessed via Youtube

THIS ONE.  I especially love the dancing jews. Continue reading