Sunday, December 30, 2012

2012 Year In Review

2012 was a good year to me...much much better than 2011! I am actually kinda sad to see this year go, but look forward to 2013!

Started my year off with a Cortisone injection in hopes of healing my shoulder...that didn't happen!

Is a major month of birthdays for the friends and this year we all turned 21!!

We also went and saw the annual Mr. Buff contest which is always a good Milligan tradition!

This month brought Spring Break which was much needed.

My grandpa also made his way to Heaven and while we all miss him all the time, we know he is in a much better place now:)

One of the besties, Becky, got engaged!!

I celebrated my 21st birthday!! Wohoo finally legal!

Wonderful Wednesday was turned into Marvelous Monday!

We creeked Lauren after waiting way too long after her engagement!

I also hosted with two other girls a wedding shower for Lauren.

Finished my Junior Year of College

Started my job at Gold's Gym Kids Club

Started training with Sherry and since I have lost 20 pounds!!

I had surgery on my shoulder the first day of the month.

I finally made the decision to get a blog makeover and I am still loving it oh so much!

I spent mostly all of my time in one of three places: the beach, work, or working out.

I cut 12 inches off of my hair and have loved having short hair so much I am cutting it again!

Moved Mattie and Boone into law school in Georgia

Started my Senior year of college at Milligan!

Started studying for the GRE

I struggled a little bit with being away from Mamerz again but got to see her when she vistited Virginia!

Ashlee cooked me salmon for the first time and I liked it well enough:)

Visited Mattie at law school for fall break

I did my first ever vlog!

Started the long and stressful process of applying to graduate school.

Going to soccer games was in full effect! I will miss being at those and cheering on my friends.

Becky asked all of us girls to be bridesmaids in her wedding! And we all said yes of course!

Wonderful Christmas Party with Those Girls

First semester of Senior year ended with straight A's

Got accepted into my first Grad School!

It was definitely an eventful year to say the least! I am happy to say 2012 did me good and I will always be able to look back on it with fond memories!

Here is to another wonderful year coming in 2013!!

Friday, December 28, 2012

That Kind of Friend

You know those friends who you love but never get to see but when you do see them it feels as if you were never seperated? Yeah I like those friends. I have one of those friends. Her name is Annie.

Annie and I met our sophomore year of high school. We both got elected to be officers in Key Club for the next year and ended up spending quite a bit of time together. We also were both Cotillion Assistants (classy is how we roll) our Sophomore, Junior, and Senior years.

Very quickly Annie became my best friend. We went everywhere and did everything together. In fact I would not walk into graduation without her. She came to the mountains on vacation with us (even when we had a blizzard and no electricity) and my family just loved her.

Unfortunately, Senior year means applying to college and making decisions. Annie chose to stay close and go to University of South Florida in Tampa. I chose Milligan in Tennessee. This meant being 12 hours apart.

I remember when I went to orientation I was texting her the whole time telling her how nervous I was and wishing she was there. I really don't know how I got through all of that without her!

We manage to stay in contact quite a bit of Freshmen year of college and saw each other every chance we could get. We still call and text a little, but not as much as we use to. but you can bet that every time I am in Florida I see that girl.

And when we get together? It is as if no time has passed. Conversation flows, there is no awkwardness, and we genuinely care about what the other person is saying. I love Annie and I am SO grateful to still have her in my life!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Crafty Christmas

For the past two Christmas's I have done several crafts for my Mom and sister. I enjoy spending time crafting, and I feel like I can make their gifts more personal! This is not to say I did not also go out and buy some things off their Christmas list for them!

Last week I wrote about the letter H I made out of wine corks for my mom for Christmas last year. This year I knew more wine cork crafts were in order!

For my mom I spelled out the word FAMILY in wooden letters I bought from Hobby Lobby and then hot glued away the wine corks on.

I decided then to do my sisters initials in wine corks as well. I think it will be a nice little accent to her kitchen or living room!

This year I really wanted to do something with wine bottles. My first plan of wrapping them in string was a huge fail. So plan B came up.

I painted the bottles and then stenciled on designs. The colors are perfect for our living room and kitchen area and I loved how they turned out.

My last craft that I did was personalize coffee mugs for Mattie. She told us a while back that she didn't have many coffee mugs. I bought basic ones from Target, used paint pens for dishware, and decorated the way I wanted. They were very simple but I liked the end result!

Hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Getting Back on the Weight Loss Wagon

Being back home has meant getting back on track with my weight loss.  Being at school was hard for me when it came to weight loss, especially the last month or so.  Between Thanksgiving and finals week, the last thing I was focused on was losing weight.
Because of that, I gained weight for the first time since May.  Only 6 pounds, but 6 pounds too many for me.  I know exactly what happened to cause this too.  I wasn't working out at all, and I wasn't all that focused on my diet.
Now that I am back home for a month though, I am back to losing the weight.  I have only been home for a week, and I have been able to lose 4 of the 6 pounds I gained back.  I am hopeful the rest will come off soon and I will be able to lose more.
I have a goal I want to reach while I am here.  I would LOVE the get out of the 180's.  Like seriously I have seen 18something for too long!  I have 7 pounds to lose to make that happen! And I am telling you right now it is going to!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

5 Reasons I Love This Season

I just love Christmas time.  Not because of the cold weather (Florida doesn't believe in that), not because of the food, and not because of long break I get from school.  I love this time of year for many other reasons.
1.  The gift of giving.  Not only do I love to be able to give gifts to others, but I love seeing the joy my family gets out of giving gifts.  We get so excited when we know we have found the PERFECT gift for one another.
2. The surprises.  This time of year there are surprises just around every corner.  Whether it is what we get in the mail, or just showing up for someone.  I love either being surprised or doing it myself.
3. The happiness.  Everyone is just plain happy this time of year.  We have so much to be thankful for and so much to be happy about.  How can you not be happy right now?
4.  Being with the family.  This is the one time of year that all of us are home.  Not only are we all home, but no one is worried about school, must of us do not have to work, and we get to spend a lot of time together.  For the Hardin's, nights around the fire pit are the best ones!
5.  Last, but most important, we get to celebrate the birth of our Savior.  Jesus is the reason for the season, and that is who we will be celebrating.  

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

I Might Need An Amputation...

If you have been around this blog for a while now, you know all about my left shoulder problems.  To this day it still amazes me how pain from one area of the body can affect all areas of the body, including your mind.

After surgery back in June, I thought everything was going to get better.  And it did...until October.  From June-October I had minimal pain, and most of it was from readjusting to using muscles that had not been used in years.

But come mid October the bad pain was back.  Radiating down my back, neck, chest, and arm.  I was heartbroken to say the least.  Working out was making it worse and I didn't know what to do.

I thought it may have just been stress related, so for weeks I didn't say anything to anyone.  A month later the pain was still there and I was a mess.  I couldn't sleep and I was in so much pain I was nauseous all the time.  I was even missing some classes...and to be honest I hated that class so I didn't really care about not going!

I finally started telling people and taking some pain meds again.  But nothing was working.  When I came home for Thanksgiving I had a massage and even that didn't work like it had before.

Fortunately on Monday I had by 6 month surgery follow up! I was SO nervous to go.  I just knew when I told them I was in pain again they would look at me like a crazy person.  I just knew they wouldn't know what was going on.  And I was sure they couldn't help me anymore.

Thankfully...I was wrong!  Even though I had to wait an hour to see the doctor, and only saw him for 3 minutes, I got answers!!

For once what I was experiencing was NORMAL! They said it happens sometimes in patients that when the nerves are healing inflammation can occur and cause pain! Praise the Lord! I am not crazy and this can be fixed!!

I am now on oral steroids for the week and a topic treatment as well.  It has only been one day and I can tell a major difference!

I am so thankful I got a good answer and will hopefully be healed soon! I have been praying so hard over this and knew God had the power to heal and answer prayers!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Gifts of Christmas Past

I have been meaning to write this post for the past year!  But later is better than never...I hope at least!

Last year I made some pretty awesome gifts for my family if I do say so myself.  I worked really hard on them and was beyond excited when it came time to open presents.  

There is one gift that stands out among all of the ones I made.  Let me give you a little back story to it.  My family LOVES wine.  Dad collects it, we have 6 wine coolers in the house, and we all get to enjoy it.  A while ago Mamerz thought that it would be fun and decorative to collect the wine corks.

Well since we had so many I decided something needed to be done with them.  My inspiration came from this on Pinterest.

Obviously instead of the letter K, I did the letter H for Hardin.  I ordered a 22 inch tall and 2 inch thick wooden H offline.  I am kicking myself for not remembering where.  But just google it and I know you will find a place!

I collected all the wine corks I could find from the house.  Mamerz knew something was up, but she had no clue what I was doing!

I then hot glued one by one the wine corks onto the H.  There is no method to this, other than varying up the corks so that you don't have all of one color together.  As you can see red wine is the norm around here, but I threw in some white wine corks as well.

You just continue adding corks all the way up the letter.  I just used my best judgement on trying to keep it looking even.  I wish I had done a better job at that, but it was my first try.  I guess you could lay them all out first, but that would take way too long for me!

And here is the finished product! I was IN LOVE with it! And I knew Mamerz was going to be blown away by it.  Christmas morning came, and when her and Dad opened it they were amazed and in love just as much as I was.

It now hangs in our kitchen and looks wonderful!  Needless to say there may be some more wine cork christmas presents coming this year...

Friday, December 14, 2012

Home At Last and Good News

After a way too long week of exams, I am home at last! I was so ready to leave Milligan and head south that I did something I normally wouldn't do...I left as soon as my last exam was over and drove straight home.

Usually I break the 11 hour trip up.  Or I really don't like driving at night so I will leave early enough so that I don't have to.  But this semester none of that matter even a little bit.  I just wanted to go home.

Do yall ever try to race your GPS? I always want to see how many minutes I can knock off the original time the GPS gives me. 

Super stoked because this time I was able to beat it by over 10 minutes! Also please ignore the part of the picture that shows me speeding.  I would never do that...

In order to keep me awake during the trip lots of caffeine was in order.  And this resulted in a major dancing and singing party come 7 p.m.  It was dark, I was tired, and if only there was a video to show my awesomeness.  Pretty sure everyone who passed me was making fun of me!

I also was listening to J.K Rowling's new book.  Yes I listen to audiobooks...lame I know.  But it helps me stay awake sometimes.  And let's just say I was not a fan of this book.  I seriously started to wonder how many more times she could use the Fword.

And now time for the good news! First and foremost I got accepted into my first Grad School.  After my interview with Milligan, they called to let me know they would love to have me! So stoked to know that while this may not be my first choice, at least I WILL be going to school!

Also I got a 100% on my last final! I was proud so I thought I would share that too!

Now I am off to continue enjoying my day at home with Mamerz:)

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

We Don't Do Gifts

So I have this friend, Lauren, and we don't do gifts.  We just don't.  Nothing for Christmas or birthdays.  We send our love and that is all.

Now that might seem sad.  But I love the fact that we don't do gifts.  I know that she loves me and I don't need her to buy me something just to prove it. And I hope she would say the same thing about me :)

This year though Lauren is having surgery right before Christmas, and so I knew I wanted to get her something.  She lives in Tennessee and I am in Florida for break, so I won't be able to be there for her after surgery.

I use to have this bear that Lauren always cuddled with when we were hanging out.  So before summer 1 year ago I gave her the bear so that she would have something from me.  Well things happened, we went through a tiny rough patch, and well the bear got thrown away.  

So trying to replace the bear she threw away, I got her a new one.  Instead of a Christmas present he was a good luck with surgery I love you bear.  She of course hated that I got her a present, but well she sucked it up and accepted it.

Lauren I hope you love your bear, name it, and think of me after surgery when you need something to cuddle with!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Exams, Exams, Exams!

Finals week is upon us here at Milligan.  WORST WEEK EVER!  Seriously it is my nightmare to have tests in every class all in one week.  To say I am stressed is an understatement (I feel like I say that all the time about everything!).
All day Saturday, while everyone was enjoying the warm December weather, I was trapped inside writing a paper.  No worries folks, if you have any questions about women leaders in the church just ask me.  I got your back!

I did step outside for a short little time and got to see my favorite shepherds ever! We had dress rehearsals for the children's Christmas play.  These kids have my heart!
Sunday after church I answered essay question after essay questions after essay question.  Fun I tell you.  Oh and no worries, I still have about 8 more to answer.
Monday I have my first exam at 4.  Tuesday I am exam free.  Wednesday I have one at 10:30 and another at 4.  And Thursday my last and final one will be at 10:30 and then I hit the road!

I really cannot wait to be home.  I need to refocus on my working out, my shoulder, and losing weight. Yes I know it is the Holiday season and I still want to lose weight.  And I will.  Oh and I kinda want to see these people!

Hope you all have a much much better week than I will be having:)