Thursday, June 26, 2014

Where I Come From

Tuesday nights after class I tend to find myself standing next to my car for an hour with a new great friend talking about anything and everything.  You know those "get to know you more and share everything" kind of conversations you have with someone you just kinda met and are getting to know.  Seriously we would sit out there all night if we could.  

This past Tuesday I was beyond thankful to have someone here that I could have those conversations with.  Needless to say, class was a little rough.  There was a lot of judgement on me and where I come from, which hurts me more than anything.  If you don't know me, don't judge where I come from.  Thankfully Lili has gotten to know me and was there for me when I really just needed a friend.

All of this to say, I got to thinking about where I really come from.  What made me who I am today? Who made me who I am today?  So why not share it and get it out so that I can never forget where I come from.

First and foremost I come from... Two amazing parents.  Parents who almost 30 years later love each other more than anything.  Parents who are best friends.  Parents who are the greatest inspiration anyone could ever ask for. A Dad who has worked harder than any man I have ever seen to provide the best he can for his family.  And a Mom who has supported and been there for all four kids every step of our lives no matter what.

I come from... A home full of craziness and sarcasm.  If you know me and think I am sarcastic then come meet my family.  It explains it all.

I come from... A strong education.  Growing up my parents put our education first and still do to this day.  I have been blessed to have received the best education from Milligan and now Southeastern.

I come from...Hard work.  Some may think I was handed everything I ever wanted.  And maybe somethings were handed to me.  But I also have worked my ass off to get where I am today.  I have one of the hardest work ethics and I am proud of that.  I know that hard work is what will pay off in the end.  Relying on others will not.

I come from... Amazing support.  I could not make it through this life if I didn't have the support that I do from my family and my friends.  I am so beyond lucky to have people who support every move I make no matter what.  Even if they don't always agree or see why I do what I do, they are still there to support me and help me make it through this crazy ride called life.

We all have different backgrounds.  We all come from somewhere.  So why judge someone because if where they come from?  I do not get that at all.  If you know me, then you know that I love hearing your story and your background.  I love getting to know people.  And there is no judgement from me when you share your story.  And all I ask is please don't judge me either.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

I'm Fine

We all say it all the time. "I'm fine" or "I'm good". When asked how are we doing that day. Being a counselor in training (oh yes very technical and important title there) I ask this question and get this answer from just about every single one if my clients. I can't think of a time one walked in and responded differently. As a matter of fact I don't remember the last time I answered something differently when asked how I was doing.

This got me thinking. Does saying "I'm fine" or "I'm ok" really tell the person we are talking to anything? No it doesn't. I am now understanding why one of my professors hates when I came in and answered with that. Part of me wonders if we don't want to share or if we don't think the person asking wants to know. Probably a mixture if both comes into play. 

As Christians we are called to live in community with one another. We are told to be a community and rely on that community. We have this community who is there to care for us and when they ask "how are you" they mean it and don't just want an "I'm fine". Hebrews 10:24-25 states, 

"And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near."

Finding a community to do this with, even just one other person, can be hard. Trust me I know all about it. But doing so can provide strength and support that we all need to get through this life. No one wants to go through life on their own. We all have a desire to do life with people. 

Most of us have that one person we can honestly tell how we are doing. They don't get the "I'm fine" answer. They get the truth. Why can't we do this with more people? Why not answer the guy next door who asks how your doing with an "you know not so great. I'm a little stressed" or an "I'm great! I just had the best day ever!" Why not have conversation with someone? Why not really care when you ask the how are you question?

I know I have a lot of questions in this post. And it may be all overthe place. You may even be wondering what in the world I have gotten into. But when it comes down to it I just care. And I want others to care. I want people to be honest when they tell me how they are doing and I want to be honest when I am asked

I am setting a challenge for myself and for anyone else who wants it to be more honest. Stop saying "I'm fine" or "I'm good". Start saying how you really feel. And mean it when you ask how someone else is doing that day. Be prepared to listen and give empathy if need be. Be prepared to rejoice with that person. Be present and care. 

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Having My Own Place: What I Have Learned

Having been on my own for almost a year, I have learned so much about having your own place. One you pay for and have to keep nice and clean. One where mom doesn't come over and take care of everything. One where you are the boss and are responsible for what happens in that lace. One where you can decorate in whatever way you want! I have LOVED having my own place, but I have also had some revelations about it.

1. Paying for electricity
This has got to be the biggest one for me. Before I rented and had to pay the electric bill I didn't care about leaving the lights on at all time or the t.v.  Now? My apartment stays dark a lot. I use to leave a light on for when I came home at night. But that costs money and figured I could do without that. I am also very careful about turning lights off when I don't need them on. I have even started opening the shades for some natural light which I love!

2. Your responsible for clogs
In college anytime we had any problems with any plumbing we called maintenance and they took care of it. At home I told mom and she took care of it. Now? I take care of it. I am now a plumber. I fix toilets and clogged showers. 

3. Locking your door is necessary
In college I NEVER locked the door to my room. Sometimes my roommates would and of course I wouldn't have my keys and I would get locked out. But there was a lot of safety on that campus and I didn't ever worry about locking the door. Being in my own place my door is always locked. My place now is not as safe and protected as a college dorm and I do NOT want anyone in there. Fortunately for me, my apartment is on the front side of the apartment where someone would see if someone tried to break in. 

4. Neighbors? What are those?
I do not know a single neighbor of mine. Ok I take that back. One guy at the gym told me he lives above me. But it's not like we talk. I never see my neighbors. I try to smile and say hi when I do see them. But I seriously do not know any of them at all. And it kinda makes me sad :( I use to know all of my neighbors in college and back home. Now no one. People are just so much more private and quiet these days. 

5. Your break it. You pay for it. 
Mom and Dad you might want to read past this one... But there is this little thing in my contract for my apartment which says I have to pay for things if I break them or if Brutus ruins them. So far I won't be getting my deposit back on that kid. You see he use to like chewing on the blinds. And he found a string in my carpet and just kept pulling and scratching. He also knocked over a vase that fell and chipped my counter.  I will own up to all of these. And then I will pay for all of them. 

As I said, I love love love having my own place. I was given the choice of staying home while in school or to move out. After living in Tennessee by myself for 4 years, I knew living at home would not be the best for me and my sanity. I am thankful it was something I was able to do NAND was supported by my family to do. I look forward to the many other apartments and homes I will probably have over the years and the lessons I will learn from those places!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Getting My Booty Moving!

It is a well known fact that I have a love/hate relationship with losing weight, eating healthy, and working out.  I love the results of all three, but actually doing them is not always pure bliss.  But they are all things I NEED to do in order to be the healthy person I want to be.

I have slowly, but surely been working all three of these things into my daily routine.  The eating healthy part has been one of the hardest parts.  As busy as I am working multiple jobs and going to school, fast food is easy and good.  But then I gained 20 pounds in 5 months and well that was NOT good at all.  So I am back on the healthy make my own food train. Like this breakfast I am obsessed with: plain greek yogurt, strawberries, and truvia sprinkled on top.

And then there is the working out.  Waking up at 4 am to go to the gym won't cut it with my never ending busy days.  So I am back into trying to run.  I ran my first 5k in almost a year a couple weeks ago, I got new shoes (Brooks Revenna), and I am battling the Florida heat and trying to run.  Today I had my first run in my new shoes!

It didn't go exactly as planned, but I got out there and did it.  My goal is to run 2-3 times a week training for my next 5k at the end of July.  And during that race I am hoping a praying to beat my time of 39:47.

In all of this process over the last couple of weeks, I have lost some weight.  I am down about 6 pounds, which is AWESOME! I also know the more weight I lose the easier running is going to be for me.  And the more progress I see the more I am going to want to continue eating healthy and running!

I am hoping that putting this out there will also provide some encouragement and pressure for me to keep going.  I want to feel better about myself again and the only way to do that is to GET MY BOOTY MOVING!!!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

A Happy Little Family

So have you been wondering where I have been? Well it's really simple. I have been living life.  I have been spending all of my extra time (what little I have) with the best family a girl could ask for.  It's summer time and the living is easy (or so those people who never went to grad school say) which means as much beach/boat time as I can!

This past weekend was a weekend I live for.  Mattie and I headed down to the beach with my parents and her new boyfriend on Friday.  Saturday was spent on the boat in the sun just having fun.  Sunday was the best day though.

Being Father's Day, the boys made their way down as well with Benj's girlfriend.  We tossed jokes back and forth like no one's business, Dad opened his gifts (I won by the way with a wine glass in a tervis tumbler with a Captain emblem on it), and it was back on the boat we went for some lunch and some sun.

We pulled up to the restaurant for lunch by boat early and they let us come in and get drinks while we waited for the food side to open.  We laughed and laughed and waited for friends to come join us.  We just got alone that day.  Which doesn't always happen.  There was no yelling, no fighting, just love.

We went to the beach where the boys wrestled and we all just played.  I know I keep saying it, but it was just fun.  We laughed, we talked, we loved.  We were happy.  And I wouldn't trade that kind of day for anything in this whole wide world!

Monday, June 16, 2014

June Goals Update

At other month. Another goals update. Oh how I love these updates! As I have said before, goals are some of my favoritest things and seeing progress on those goals comes in a close second. This month I have to say I did think about my goals a lot...just maybe didn't do what i had planned on doing!

1. Put 10% of each paycheck into my Savings.
Instead of putting away 10% of each paycheck I changed this to reaching a certain number in my savings and staying there. I have reached that number!!!!! And now I just have to keep it there!
I have kept up with my revision of this goal. And now I want to revise it again.  I want to start saving more money each month.  Even if it is just simply $50.  I know in a year I will be having more responsibilities and I want to be prepared for them.

I have not out anything more into savings. In fact I will be taking some out soon. That plus not being able to substitute teach in the summer not a lot of money for me to save. 

2.  Go Back to Charleston
Need to get to work on this one!
Nothing has changed here :(

3.  Focus on my Health
So I told you last month I was starting Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred. But I didn't really do. I lasted maybe a week. And then I ran approximately three times before my race last Saturday. And my time definitely showed that. BUT since the race I am totally back into running and I am getting myself some new shoes to help out!  This month my goal is to run at least 2 times a week and train for my next 5k!

4.  Really get involved in Church
This month Church wasn't exactly a priority for me. With summer comes weekends at the beach with the family. So I really only went one or two Sundays this past month. My goal is to make it every other week, so that I can also enjoy some beach and family time. 

5. Meet a blog friend in person
Plans to meet Rissa in September maybe!
It's close enough that Rissa is starting to look at flights down here!  So so so excited for her to come!

6. Visit Tennessee and New Hampshire twice at least before the year is up!
I visited Tennessee March 1. And I have plans to go to New Hampshire at the end of the summer!
This remains the same.

Ashlee did come down for Easter last month which was so great.  I was so happy to be able to spend some great time with her! It was much needed best friend time!

I have officially bought my ticket to New Hampshire to visit Lauren at the end of July! I am so stoked to be going and cannot wait to be there!

7.  Finish decorating my apartment
I have loved my newest additions to my apartment. I added some new prints to my walls. I love the prints and the frames!

Here is what it looked like before:
The first three prints are from Lauren's Blog

Here is way it looks like now:
The new Prints are from this shop.

I also found this tin bin that I absolutely LOVE. It is going a over my kitchen cabinets. I am working on decorating up there and as soon as it is done I will share a finished picture!

So I haven't quite finished a room yet.  I am so close to having my kitchen done and I cannot wait to share it.  I had plans to get a bookshelf for my dining/living room. And then Brutus started jumping on the counters so I got him a cat tree and it sits where I would have out the bookshelf. So I would say at least I added something!?

8. Find a Practicum and Internship site
I wrote all about my site here.  And I have also committed to being at Lighthouse until December for my internship.  I will also be working at a church doing support groups and working on gaining individual clients.  To see what kind of work I am doing read this post.

9. Go visit my sister at least one weekend before she comes home from Law School.
I am thinking this one is going to happen in the fall.  This spring just got a little too busy for me!

10. Quit one of my jobs
I DID IT!! You read all about it here

11. Do 10 Random Acts of kindness
I completed two already! I sent Lauren and her hubby a gift card to go on a date. Those two just moved and I knew life was crazy for them. I just wanted them to take some time for themselves:) 
Also when I was in Tennessee I treated some friends to meals. It was my way of showing love to them:)
I am officially awful and did not do a single one of these this month! I will catch up!

12.  Spend more time in the Word
Still a work in progress. I was doing good and then I let life get in the way:(
Still working on this one too….

13.  Stop procrastinating work as much
New semester, new start right?!  I have begun my summer semester and I will be forced to be more diligent with my work.  It's a lot more busier and I have to really watch when things are due.  But I am looking forward to doing it all!

14.  Put my phone away more
I really worked on this one. And I am proud to say, I have out my phone away a lot! I have enjoyed time with my family and friends without my phone involved. And I have loved it. It has also made me more aware of when others are on their phones or devices when I am trying to talk to them.not a fan of being ignored and so since I now know how it feels I won't be doing it as often anymore!

Slowly but surely I will be completing all of these goals! Like I said, I am loving doing them and I know they will get done!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

A Sister 5k

Well hello there friends! Long time no talk. Life has been a tad bit crazy busy for me and honestly I haven't had anything I really wanted to write about on here. So I haven't been around much. But I am back and hopefully will be posting some more!

This past Saturday I ran my third 5k! It is the first of four that I signed up for for this summer. There is the Watermelon series here in Lakeland which I ran one of their races last summer. My sister and I are both kinda into running and thought it would be fun to do the series this summer!

Going into the race Mattie was all talk about how she was going to blow me and Brittany (who is also doing the runs with us!!!!) out of the water and beat us by minutes! I just wanted to complete the race in under 40 minutes. I knew I had not been training and was just hoping for the best. 

5 minutes into the run and a little someone (Mattie) was dying. But she had the great cheerleader next to her who would not let her stop till mile 1. I cheered. I dragged. I pushed. I did everything to keep that girl moving. I also took selfies to encourage us!

Until the last half of the race. And then the tables turned and Mattie cheered. And dragged. And pushed me to the finish. 

I could not have run this race without her. It was so nice to have someone right there beside me helping me and me helping her. It was so much fun to have someone to talk to and plan with. We both agreed to run so far and then break for a little and then repeat till the end. 

At about mile 2.30 my left foot when numb/fell asleep. When I could feel it, it felt two times bigger than normal and was so weird to run on. This really held me back the last mile of the race. I have since figured out that I need some new good shoes. And cannot wait to get some!!

Our gun time was 39:47 and I beat Mattie. She says she let me. Little did she know I would sprint out the last little bit as fast at possible. But she was one second behind me! Official times haven't been posted yet, but we were at the back of the pack when the gun went off so we are hoping for a lightly better time. I was just thrilled I met my goal of under 40 minutes!!

Before this race I wasn't really enjoying running. I only did it the few times I did because I had the race coming up. Since the race I have renewed my love for running and want to get back out there! I can't wait to train for the next race in this series and hopefully will have a much better time!