Mom for a minute

I feel like my life has hit the fast forward button. Here I sit in a beautiful house, with three kids, three cats, a dog, and a Honda Mini-van. I've driven carpool, hosted a sleep-over, played "cat-opoly" (one too many times if you ask me...), dino-opoly, clemson-opoly, and disney-opoly. Yes, those are real games. I've cooked dinner, made breakfasts, cut the video games off, cut them off again a few hours later...this list is endless. I've seen a disney movie (UP - so great!), rented another disney movie, gone to the skate park...and even been Father's Day shopping! I've woken up before the kids to have enough time to shower before they get up, and waited up late for one to come home last night, before I could go to bed. I've juggled one kid at Vacation Bible School, one having band practice, and one arriving home from a week-long sleep away camp. We've gone to sonic, wal-mart, hollywood video, and the movies. And, I found out the six year old has a girlfriend. And she kissed him on the lips....because "she just wanted money". (Direct quote from said six year old, when asked why a girl was kissing him... Man, girls are learning early these days!) Miraculously, I actually found time for a job interview and to read about 1/3 of My Sister's Keeper... gotta have some alone time.

All in 3 days. I have a tremendous new found appreciation, and almost idol-worship of mothers of multiple children! I'm wiped out after babysitting/housesitting for what seems like five minutes, as compared to a lifetime. The difference is, tomorrow I'll leave, and go back to doing normal 22 year old stuff. I've been taking care of my three favorite children in the world, The Newitt kids, whom I've watched grow from a 2 year old and a newborn sister, to a 13 year old boy with a heart of gold, an 11 year old fiery freckle-faced girl, and a 6 year old full of innocent joy. Drew, Patsy, and Peter will always be my favorites! I haven't been able to spend much time with them, since I've been at school for so long, but now that I've spent the last three days living and taking care of them, I realize how much I love these children. And this family! Scott (aka "The Firefly guy") and Trisha have always been like second parents to me, and it's quite encouraging to have such a family grounded in the Lord and their church so close to my heart. It's really been a joy to be here!

That said, it's been a great time to think about growing up while I've been here! Lately, I've been so frustrated with where I'm at in life. I'm looking for apartments, but it all seems too expensive. Then I was really hoping for a certain job in Charlotte, but didn't get it. I'm just trying to make ends meet, but not really utilizing my degree that I worked so hard for. And, I can't lie and say it doesn't bother me a bit that I'm completely single, because there is that bug in my ear when someone I know gets engaged (or married) like, every other day. Ok, maybe not that often, but it feels close! And contrary to popular belief, it does kinda get old hearing "So, who are you dating these days?" and I respond with the ever-faithful "Oh, no one. Boys are trouble", in which I'm seemingly a confident single gal. I am, but I'm also always up for meeting prince charming. :) Thus, the cards haven't seemed to fall right these past few weeks. However, these past few days of "playing mom" have helped me look at my life from a different angle.

It hit me when we went to the movies. I took Peter, the six year old ladies man, to see UP. The intro jingle that plays for all disney movies (You know, when they're drawing the castle in the beginning) began to play, and I'm not lying, I got chills. It was a moment of joy, where I remembered hearing that jingle growing up. For a minute, I was little again. I know that sounds so silly, but it was nice to remember what it felt like to have a child-like heart. And seeing Peter's genuine joy in experiencing life, and playing games, and giggling, and just being a kid, has made me see in these past few days how good life is supposed to be. Granted, I'm not six, and I have responsibilities, it's been nice to steal away from worries and spend time with some great kids. There were also several other enlightening moments throughout the past few days, but I already feel this post is pretty long...I'd be here all night.

Back to reality, all the money I earned on this wonderful sabbatical from reality went straight to Park West Veterinary Clinic today. Charlie got sick, and had to go get an IV and special food. Dollar earned, dollar spent - Easy come, easy go. So I really felt like a mom, when I had hard earned money, which went straight to my "child" (for all intensive purposes). Oh well, he's worth every penny, and to tell ya the truth, I earned a lot more than just money this weekend. I earned a flashback to childhood bliss, a taste of being a mother of three, and a reunion with the sweetest children God could give. It's been refreshing.

Drink some Firefly, and be blessed :)

"Jesus said, 'Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." Matthew 19:14

So, this was not taken in 2003...but here's Drew, Patsy, and Peter!


Never Say Never...stuck in paradise.

Wow! So much has happened in the past week & 1/2...I feel like I haven't had time to breathe! Everyone's asking me how it feels to be a college grad, and truth is, it feels about the same. Well, for now. I know when I get that first health insurance bill, or car insurance bill... I'll definitely feel it! But for now, I've just moved back in with the parents, so I just feel like I'm home on another vacation from Clemson. Reality will set in eventually, and I kinda wish it would. Not that I want to pay bills, but I just feel kinda stuck in my life right now. I would love to move out and live on my own, but that requires a job.... something I'm tirelessly searching for. I was reminded by a sweet sister the other night at worship practice that it may be easy to blame the economy for no job, but that really God's waiting to place me where He needs me. I'm just doing all I can to find this place. I'm trying to let that bring me peace, but in a world that's go go go, it's hard to slow down and trust.... but I'll get there.

As for the title of the blog, this has sort of become my motto recently! Never say never. No matter how cliche, I'm finding the truth in it! I always said I'd never move back in with my parents after graduation. I said I was going to move to NYC, and get a job there and live for a few years. But here I am, sitting at the kitchen table in my parents house, 12:30 on a cloudy Tuesday, and jobless. I'm very thankful to have such a supportive family (and amazing house in Charleston!) to come home to, but like any 22 year old, it's not the optimal choice! Don't get me wrong, I get along with my family great, and love them immensely, and have enjoyed seeing them so much, but I just feel like I got my wings clipped a bit. How can I do great things, or start my own company, or move to NYC, when I can't even afford to move out of my parents house? Granted, I've only been here a little over a week, but already I feel stuck. So currently, I think God is teaching me patience, and trying to wrench some trust out of me! Trust that He'll move me when He wants to- Trust enough to void my plans and reach for His. And I do believe that somewhere His plans do mesh with mine, or else I wouldn't have these desires. (He tells us so through Psalm 37:4 - "Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.") So prayers for God to reveal these plans would be greatly appreciated :) Long story short, never say you'll never move back in with your parents...because you just might.

Also, Never say never about friendships and relationships. I've learned recently that it is possible to forgive but not forget. I thought I could never, ever forgive this person, but crossed paths with them recently, and realized I had forgiven them. I realized I let all the mess go a long time ago. I'll never forget the mess they made, but don't hold it against them any more. Oh, to be free of that burden is a wonderful feeling. So, never say you'll never speak to someone again....because you just might.

Also, my parents put our house on the market. I love this house, and thought we'd have it forever. This kinda relates to my last post about materialism. Truth is, my parents don't need this monstrous house for just them and my little sister (I'm already counting me out of the scenario...in hopes of SOON having an apartment). It just doesn't make sense anymore. Sure, it's great for parties, and it's so beautiful, and welcoming, and home... but at the end of the day, it's just a house. My family will stay the same after it's gone. If living a simpler, happier life means getting rid of the status symbol that this beautiful house has become, then I say good riddance. I LOVE this house - the porch, the creaky steps, my yellow bedroom, the great yard - but the best part about it is the memories made on this porch, in my yellow bedroom, and in this great yard, and those parts of this house - the intangibles - will move with us. They won't be left behind with the house, and I think that makes it so much easier to leave behind. Like I said, I thought we'd never move from this house, but God has begun to loosen my family's grip on this piece of materialistic paradise, and it's a good step of faith. Good things will come! Again, never say you'll never leave somewhere...because you just might.

I'm sure there's a million other "nevers" I've said - but these are the most prominent in my life these days, and I thought I should share :). So prayers for trust in finding a job, wisdom with old friendships, and peace about moving are greatly accepted!

Grace and Peace.


100 songs you need to listen to!

so i was backing up my iTunes library, and i kept finding myself saying "Oh that's a great song! i forgot i had that one!" so...it inspired a list of my 100 favorite songs of all time. Not in any order, just the order that they came into my head. :) I know there's some i forgot too. feedback and suggestions welcome :)

1. Hallelujah - Jeff Buckley
2. What If You - Joshua Radin
3. Mexico - Jump, Little Children
4. Hosanna - Hillsong United
5. Just for Now - Imogen Heap
6. Your Love is Extravagant - Casting Crowns
7. At Last - Etta James
8. Forever and Ever Amen - Randy Travis
9. The Way You Look Tonight - Frank Sinatra
10. Everything - Lifehouse
11. Measure of Beauty - Lindsey Kane
12. Somewhere Over the Rainbow - Israel Kamikawiwole
13. Turn Your Lights Down Low - Bob Marley (Colbie Caillat also does a really great cover...)
14. Raining on Sunday - Keith Urban
15. Answer - Sarah Mclachlan
16. Heavenly Day - Patty Griffin
17. Have a Little Faith in Me - John Hiatt
18. Up to the Mountain - Kelly Clarkson's version
19. Let It Be - The Beatles
20. By Your Side - Tenth Avenue North
21. The General - Dispatch
22. Southern Girl - Amos Lee
23. O Magnum Mysterium - Morten Lauridsen
24. Feels Like Home - Chantal Kreviazuk
25. Canon in D - Johann Pachelbel
26. Clair de Lune - Claude Debussy
27. Picture This - Jim Brickman
28. Amazing Grace - John Newton (Il Divo's version)
29. Carried to the Table - Leeland
30. Tears of the Saints - Leeland
31. Home - Michael Buble
32. Remember When It Rained - Josh Groban
33. Be Thou My Vision - Ginny Owens
34. World on Fire - Sarah McLachlan
35. Someone Somewhere - Jason Reeves
36. One Love - Bob Marley
37. Untitled Hymn - Chris Rice
38. On a Night Like This - Dave Barnes
39. Gravity - Sarah Bareilles
40. Jesus and Gravity - Dolly Parton
41. Bittersweet Symphony - The Verve
42. World Spins Madly On - The Weepies
43. California - Phantom Planet
44. I Don't Want to Wait - Paula Cole (tribute to my Dawson's Creek fanatic period...)
45. To Make You Feel my Love - Garth Brooks
46. Friends in Low Places - Garth Brooks
47. Kiss Me - Sixpence None the Richer
48. 525,600 Minutes - RENT
49. Angel of Music - Andrew Lloyd Weber
50. By The Way That They Dance - Jump, Little Children
51. Brown Eyed Girl - Van Morrison
52. Maybe I'm Amazed - Jem
53. Cannonball - Damien Rice
54. This Year's Love - Damien Rice
55. She's Only Happy in the Sun - Ben Harper
56. My Hands - Jewel
57. Better Together - Jack Johnson
58. Alone - Heart (my karaoke jam)
59. Say - John Mayer
60. Fancy - Reba McEntire
61. Almost Lover - A Fine Frenzy
62. The Reason Why - Rachael Yamagata
63. To Be Alone With You - Sufjan Stevens
64. All I Ask of You - Andrew Lloyd Weber
65. La Vie En Rose - Louis Armstrong
66. The Luckiest - Ben Folds
67. Rain - Patty Griffin
68. Amber - 311
69. Hey Girl - OAR
70. Swing Life Away - Rise Against
71. Collie Man - Slightly Stoopid
72. Dancin' In the Moonlight - Toploader
73. Dare You to Move - Switchfoot
74. With My Own Two Hands - Jack Johnson w/ Ben Harper
75. When The Rain Comes - Third Day
76. Soul Meets Body - Death Cab for Cutie
77. He Walked on Water - Randy Travis
78. Butterfly Kisses - Bob Carlisle
79. Everything - Michael Buble
80. Come Away With Me - Norah Jones
81. September Song - Willie Nelson
82. Unchained Melody - Willie Nelson
83. Whatcha Know About - Donovan Frankenreiter
84. Shadowlands - Ryan Adams
85. Wonderwall - Ryan Adams
86. Say Goodnight, Not Goodbye - Chantal Kreviazuk
87. Life in a Northern Town - Sugarland ft. Little Big Town
88. Let Me Sign - Robert Pattinson
88. Smile - Nat King Cole
89. Meaning - Gavin Degraw
90. Somebody Like You - Keith Urban
91. Copper Kettle - Jump, Little Children
92. Let Her Cry - Hootie & the Blowfish
93. I'm Yours - Jason Mraz
94. Your Winter - Sister Hazel
95. Beautiful Disaster (Live Version) - Kelly Clarkson
96. Hide and Seek - Imogen Heap
97. Still - Matt Nathanson
98. I Rescued You - Emily Lynch
99. Grace's Amazing Hands - Dave Barnes
100. My Huckleberry Friend - Audrey Hepburn


It's a dog's life...

Just a few pics from my phone describing why it's great to be a dog!
At least Charlie thinks so :)

You can snuggle with just about anybody. (Even Kitty...)

Grandpa spoils you...big time!

You're still cute when you get bad haircuts.

You get to sleep while mom gets to do homework.

You can actually get really good sleep while mom does homework.

You can go on trips and never even get out of your bed.

Actually, you can go on trips and take your whole house.

Playing in the snow never gets old.

It's ok to pass out on the table after one too many glasses of wine. (Just teasing...Charlie's not 21!)

You can still be a Clemson fan!


i'm back...

wow! hard to believe its been a month since i've posted! school has been crazier than i could imagine, and truthfully i have about a million things i should be working on right now rather than this. but i need some chill out, saturday morning, do-whatever-i-want time :).

I should say SO much has happened since last posting...and I definitely don't have room in a blog to get to it all. Spring Break, High School Retreat, Bridge Run, Easter, School, more School, job search, etc. But, I'll just say God has proven Sovereign through it all, and I'm still finding that I need Him and His grace more today than I did yesterday, and the day before, and the day before...you get it.

There have been great ups, and crushing lows in the past month surrounding me and my family, but through it all, God has proven faithful. He will not let us be moved when we seek His face and trust His plan for taking care of us. I would say for sure that God has wrenched from my hands the need for worldly things. My need for expensive clothes, or driving a nice car, even having to live in the biggest house. I've been reminded that while I have these things, He can take them at any moment. If for one day my faith and pride wavers from pride in being His daughter to pride in worldly position and possessions, I am lost. So I'm working on ridding myself of material pride and gaining eternal pride in Christ.

I was running out by the Lake a few weeks ago (something I'm SURE to miss once I graduate and leave Clemson) at sunset. I try to time it just right, because it is so beautiful. Anyways, when I'm running one direction across the dyke my back is to the sunset so I can't see it. But when I got to the end and turned around that day, I was literally stopped in my tracks, amazed at the beautiful display of artwork above me! It was indescribably beautiful, the sky was orange and purple (proof that God's a Tiger!) and a rainbow of colors that no artist could ever duplicate. I was held captive. It was a gorgeous reminder that God's beauty is on display for us to see...we just have to take time to see it. I'm working on this too :).

Anyway, thats enough for one morning...I'm off to enjoy this beautiful day by the pool with my book. I'm almost done with the twilight series...gladly taking book suggestions for when I'm done! :)

MUCHO amor, mis amigos.


amazing grace.

Amazing Grace. I'm a huge fan of song lyrics, and these are simply remarkable!

Last weekend, we took our high schoolers on a "Deeper Weekend" retreat to a plantation in Walterboro, and our speaker Friday night (the incredible Dr. Charles Hook) mentioned Amazing Grace, which spurred me to really look into the song. He told us that Amazing Grace is the most recognizable and most popular song ever written, among religious and secular music. The author of the song, John Newton, was in the royal navy, and eventually became a commander of a slave ship. He eventually gave his life to Christ and became an ordained minister, who obviously came to intensely regret his involvement in the slave market, and became an advocate for abolition. Dr. Hook told us that John Newton wrote what he wanted the inscription on his own grave to be, and it was this: "John Newton, Clerk. Once an infidel and libertine. A servant of slaves in Africa was by the rich mercy of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, PRESERVED, RESTORED, PARDONED, and appointed to preach the faith he had long laboured to destroy." I would say that it is surely Amazing Grace that can preserve, restore, and pardon us from our filth and sin.

The lyrics of Amazing Grace, particularly the first verse, are so true his story: He was a wretch selling slaves, blind to the truths of Jesus' grace, but was saved and his eyes were opened by our amazing God, to be a minister to share this grace he had worked to destroy.

I've been a Christian for years, and have grown up listening to this song, so it had become just another song to me. But it was so SO good to sit down and actually read these lyrics, and seek the truth in them again. They became real to me again. I hope you can do the same!

The video link at the bottom is one we watched this weekend, and I'm not gonna lie, it made me cry a little! The music is so beautiful, I don't see how anyone can hear music like this and not be moved. I especially got chills in the last verse, realizing that they're singing in the ruins of the Roman Colosseum, which was built almost two thousand years ago (about 80 AD). The structure is now falling down and obviously won't last into eternity, but hearing the words, knowing that we can sing this song TEN thousand years from now (not just two!), and still have "NO less days to sing God's praise" is astounding! Singing praises to God will last into eternity. We will be able to sing praises to Him forever, thanks to His Amazing Grace!

"Amazing Grace,
How sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me,
I once was lost,
But now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.

Twas grace that taught
My heart to fear
And grace, my fears relieved
How precious did
That grace appear,
The hour I first believed

Through many dangers
Toils and snares,
I have already come,
Tis grace hath brought
Me safe thus far
And grace will lead me home

When we've been here
Ten thousand years
Bright shining as the sun,
We've no less days
To sing God's praise
Than when we first begun

Amazing Grace,
How Sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me
I once was lost,
But now am found,
Was blind, but now I see."

It wouldn't let me just embed the video on here, but i PROMISE it's worth watching! (There's a surprise after verse 3!) Watch it with the mindset that their stage has been there two thousand years. Watch it truly listening to the lyrics. Watch it knowing that we have received this Amazing Grace, from the God that created everything you see. I promise, it will make your day better. :)

Copy and paste this because the link isn't showing up: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mMVxzEueJ6A



Oh love. I don't know why I feel compelled to write tonight... maybe it's because I just finished (finally) watching the bachelor, or I'm smack dab in the middle of an OC marathon (Don't laugh). Or because I ran into two ex's in one day. NO I don't regret not being with them, or wish I was, etc..... but it still makes you think, you know?

I'm a big fan of love. No, I'm not in love with anyone, nor do I see myself being in love in the near future, but I have been in love before. Let's be honest, I haven't really fared well in the love department in the past few years, and have had one...a few too many broken hearts for my liking, but I'm still a fan of love. In hindsight, my last relationship turned out to be a train wreck from start to finish, and the one before that kinda ended before it even started. Long story. But at the end of the day, I can't deny that I have faith in love. I have faith that one day I'll be in it. I have faith that God designed love, He is Love, and He will give me love.

I was talking to my brilliant friend Reese tonight, and she was so encouraging. I was venting, and she advised me to "remember how fabulous you are...it can't do anything but pay off". Love can even come from great friends! She was full of insight and great advice... saying that all unanswered questions will eventually resurface, giving everything meaning. That reason is hard to trust in the moment, but essentially that hindsight really is 20/20. Which adds to the reason I believe in love. I believe that I'll one day figure it out. Call me naive, but I think I'm gonna get my fairy tale one day. Love is a great feeling... feeling loved is a great feeling. I can't wait until I find it, or am given it again.

So...being as I'm not in romantic love, I choose to surround myself with love. Love from my friends, and to my friends. Love from my family, and to my family. Love from my roommates, and to my roommates. Love from my church, and to my church. This list could go on forever. There's also love for people I don't know... but that's a whole 'nother subject.

My advice... choose love. love wins. even when you're single :)

And there's always 1 Corinthians 13. Truth of scripture is a beautiful thing...

"If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don't love, I'm nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate... So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I'm bankrupt without love. (v. 1, 3)

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. (vv. 4-8)

And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love." (v. 13)


polaroids, curses, tattoos, and stolen keys

first of all, i have to say i'm glad to be safely back in clemson. this past weekend was incredible. there's nothing like a few crazy fun nights with great friends to know how much you are loved....and some pretty out of control memories were made.

Thursday night was pretty great, I went to the Music Farm to see my amazingly talented roommate Emily play, and she did so great. Her talent is undoubtedly a gift from the Lord, because something so beautiful has to be from Him! Then I went home and got some much needed rest, (although I might would have gotten more if I knew what was in store for my weekend!)

Friday was fun, I went by Charleston Magazine, and it was a madhouse as always. I love it though; everyone frantically trying to get their files together, crafting going on in the middle of the floor, and tons of sweets scattered about the office...all the while the word "shipping" lingering over everyone's head. I seriously hope I can go back there one day! Then I went to dinner with the family, which is always fun then met up with some of my favorites downtown. It actually ended up being all C-Mag interns, which was super fun. And Reese brought the polaroid...which always makes great memories. We realized it was Friday the 13th, so of course danced our hearts out when the band played Ghostbusters and Thriller. At some point in the night, we got on the Chris Brown/Rihanna incident, and ended up with a series of Polaroids entitled "Situation: Chris Brown and Rihanna"....Too Soon? Yes, definitely. But after having a serious/awkward/mildly inappropriate heart-to-heart among friends, it was time to call it a night.

Saturday involved getting a haircut, washing my new purple sharpie tattoo off my arm (thank you, reese), a perfect Fraylick-girls shopping trip, and getting coffee with one of my amazing high school girls!

Then, I met up with some of my favorites at Sushi Hiro downtown, which is where the madness really begins. Or at least I'm blaming it on an incident that occured here. Apparently, it's really disrespectful/taboo to stand chopsticks straight up in a bowl of rice. Who knew?! One minute we were all enjoying our time, and the next, the not-japanese-at-all host races over to the table, pulls them out of the rice, and mutters something about curses, funerals, and a death offering. (Insert a table full of blank stares)How do you respond to that!? We all looked at each other dumbfounded and completely thrown by what just happened. Anyways, we brushed it off and continued our great Valentine's meal. One of my friends brought us Valentines complete with Miley Cyrus Tattoos for the girls, and NBA tattoos for the boys. Nothing like a childlike heart...I hope I never grow up. I had "Secret Pop Star" on my arm, and a rose on my wrist. The rest of the night brought even more polaroids (including more Chris Brown/Rihanna Situations) and crazy fun memories. The bouncer at the place we ended up even scrutinized my ID, telling me he had seen it at least five times, and even taken it from a girl once. I thought, funny thing, I've never, ever lost or given it out...and you need a new pick-up line. eek. We even saw a girl in a solid sequin dress and another in a lace-up shirt. Shout out to "What Not To Wear" - I think a trip to Charleston should be in the works. It made for a great Valentine's Day with great friends. I'm blessed to be loved by such fun people.

Then Sunday. Woke up, went to Church with the fam, which is always good. There's something to be said about worshipping the God of Creation with the people that brought me to know Him, and love me with the same love He has for me. I've recently learned not to take advantage of that, but that's another blog, for another day. Anyways, then came lunch, napping, then singing at LifePark. I can't explain how much I love singing, and help lead a congregation in worshipping the King of Glory.

Then Sunday night. Yikes. Let me preface this by saying that I was scheduled to leave Charleston at 6 am to make it back to class by 10. BUT, After eating dinner with the fam, i decided to meet up with some friends for just a short time, just as a goodbye-for-now til I go home again. I've now learned that next time I get that invite, I'm getting in bed immediately. I went to Village Tavern, a small, quirky hangout in Mt. Pleasant, and absurdities quickly followed. Somehow it leaked to the owner of the bar that I sing, so before I knew it, he was leaving, only to return with some strange guitar-carrying dude he had gone and woken up. A sound system was hooked up, microphones on, ready to go. Don't really know how I dodged that bullet, but NO singing with drunken bar owners ensued...thank goodness! Then, we met some new friends, and one fireman tried to be Dr. Phil to Reese. Needless to say, she decided to escape with my other friend. So it was only me and Bucky for a bit. Then, we decided to leave too (after playing some spectacular jukebox jams), only to realize Reese, the friend that left an hour ago had taken both of our keys (not on purpose, just looking after them...without telling us). And of course, she wouldn't answer her phone. So we had to call Channing, our friend who had also already left....in order to dissuade the owner (who was trying his hardest to get us to drink some mystery beverage out of a mason jar. i'm not even kidding) and his offers to drive us wherever we needed to be. I would have walked before getting in a car with him. Anyways, Channing the Angel showed up. Our only plan of action was to drive downtown to Reese's and bang on her apartment windows and doors til she woke up. So we trekked downtown and began to beat on windows, only to realize she didn't live in Apartment A, but in fact Apartment B. Thank goodness no one lived in A, or we would have gotten shot. So we moved down one door, and she awoke, gave us our keys, and we were on our way. An hour later.

I finally made it home, and needless to say I didn't quite wake up in time to get back for class. Oops. But hey, I'm only a senior in college for so long (ok, i'm in my second senior year, but who's counting?) so I'm allowed one or two skips. I hate feeling irresponsible, but Sunday night was definitely one of those once-in-a-million nights, so it was worth it. Where was the polaroid when we really needed it?! I did make it back for the most important class of the day, which was at 5:30 pm. YES.

And I undoubtedly blame the absurdities on the chopsticks curse! Only problem is, someone's gotta figure out how to UN-curse us! ;)

All in all, the weekend was unbelievable. My next visit home has a lot to live up to (although I'm not quite sure I want it to...). The best part of the weekend? Definitely the company. I say it a lot, but I'm incredibly blessed with a band of entertaining, inspiring, caring, slightly crazy, beautiful friends. Each of my friends offer something different to my life, and enrich it in so many ways they don't know. (Family is included in this word 'friends' too!) I'm richly priveleged to be surrounded by such people, especially in such a beautiful setting as Charleston.

Life is good, the Lord is good, and SO are my great friends.



What a week! (insert immense sigh of relief here).
I've got a few minutes before yoga class, so I figured I'd update the blog.
First of all, if every week is gonna be like this, I'm gonna lose my mind before I graduate, and no one's gonna want to hire a crazy person. haha....seriously though, I am now a master multi-tasker. I can even be in starbucks and lab at the same time ;).

But amidst all the craziness, I've been constantly reminded all week of how blessed I am to have such great friends and family!

Graphics is a relatively small major here at Clemson, so all the people in my class have become a sort of rag-tag family. We're all real close, and remind each other that we couldn't do it without each other. We get stressed out and bombarded with projects and tests, etc., (all the while the ever present job search lingering)....but at the end of the day, always seem to think, you know, today was actually sort of fun. So if I complain about all the stuff I have to do...don't give it much though, I actually do love my major :)

And, BONUS, I got to see my cousin this week! She came up to lecture to some classes, so she rescued me from my 6 hours of lab on Wednesday. Usually wednesdays aren't the best, but this one was definitely the exception. I even had a presentation, that I'm pretty sure I aced :).

And this morning, I had an exam, that wasn't quite as good as the presentation, but the day is quickly turning around!! I'm about to go to yoga, then head to my beloved Charleston later for a great weekend. It's gonna start tonight at the music farm....my old roomie/one of my closest friends is playing at the music farm! (emily lynch...i've talked about her before) I'm so proud of her and can't wait to hear her tonight.

Gonna be a busy weekend, but so so great. Can't wait to see my Charleston Mag friends, my high school girls, and my family!

I'm blessed beyond measure. Have a great day, ya'll!


the New Dabo Song

just a little clemson pride this evening :)
Apparently, some redneck Carolina fan wrote a "Dabo Song"...but leave it to some Clemson students to avenge it with "The New Dabo Song"

my favorite line is "Come, Mr. Spurrier, please throw your visor..." hahaha!

and probably the best Dabo Swinney quote I've heard (this even trumps the "dang toilet bowl" comment pre-gator bowl!)

"We're not a broken team. We're not an old jalopy, hoopty car that we put a new paint job on and some new rims; we got everything on this car. We got a six-disc CD changer, we've got a moon roof, cruise control, nice paint job. When you see this car, you're going to say, 'Man, I'd like to drive that one."

What a fun coach :)
Can you tell I miss football season already?!


what i love about sundays...

i actually like the whole day :) it's been a very relaxing one for me! Church, then a family at my church who "adopted" me and some others (Thomas Austin, Preston Stone) had us over for some great lunch....then I just relaxed with Charlie for the rest of the day...it's been great to slow down after the past week i had!

School is now in full gear - getting stressful and busier by the day! Just gotta remember that there is a light at the end of the tunnel...May 8th can't get here soon enough! This semester is gonna be tough, but I also want to enjoy my last one in tigertown, so I'm gonna try not to stress too much....diet coke and chocolate help a lot :)

Let's see what else is going on in life...I'm starting to help out with worship up here at Crosspoint (my church) and sing with them starting this coming sunday...I can't wait! If you know me, you know how much I love to sing...so that's a huge blessing to be able to help lead worship there! I definitely miss worshipping at FBC and LifePark in Mt. Pleasant though!

Also, it's been so so so good to be back in the swing of things and getting involved at FCA again...I didn't realize how much I missed it! Seriously, if you've never experienced Clemson FCA, you need to come visit me and go with me. (I could get on my soapbox and go on and on about how passionate I am for our FCA!) Or you could check out the website too. (It's clemsonfca.org) This past week at FCA the message was about suffering, and why bad things happen to good people...a question so many of us ask at some point or another. It was a great message for me to hear! Last Friday, we had to put my faithful lab Carl down...and it was crushing! He was seriously the best dog...loved everyone, was patient with everyone - and all around had a great personality and demeanor about him. We've had him since I was in 7th grade...and now I'm in 17th grade at Clemson ;)...so needless to say he was old, and it was time, but it was tough. Then this past Wednesday I got word that an old friend from home (in recent years, he had become more of an acquaintance) was killed in a car accident. So I was a bit down this past week (especially on Wednesday...which I've been advised to start skipping ;) ) and Thursday night was very refreshing! Matt, the speaker, turned the question around to ask why do good things happen to bad people. I have to admit, I have never viewed that question in that light before. It made perfect sense though - naturally, we are a sinful people. We deserved death, and nothing more - but we have been given the amazingly good and merciful gift of eternity in paradise! Why would something that good be given to people so unclean and filthy with our own selfishness? You know the answer - Jesus and HIS grace. He took what we deserved - the bad...worse than we can possibly imagine! Pretty amazing stuff. Matt also pointed out that ultimately, all suffering brings glory to Christ - which it does, whether we see it now or later down the road. I've seen that played out before, like when I struggle, I always tend to pour myself into the word and prayer...and I grew immensely in my faith. One particular instance I found that I grew more in a few months than I felt I had in a few years (and my roommate told me she saw that change too...so there's some of that glory for ya!) I'm not gonna lie though, there's still some tough stuff that I've been through that I haven't seen the glory of God revealed yet. I'll let you know when I do ! :)

So yeah - if you're wondering why bad things happen to good people...check the fca website, because they post the messages you can listen to...I promise it's worth it!

Final note, I have the sweetest puppy alive. He's snuggled up around my feet under my desk right now...think he loves attention? :)

Be blessed and be a blessing!!


grump face

Yesterday was just a plain old bad day. I was in class from 8:30 to 5:30 - in the same building. It was miserable...welcome to my wednesdays :/. Not to mention, on a campus of 17,000+ undergrads, i ran into the one person i didn't care to see at all. ever. and that was in the morning, so it sort of set the tone. then, i was in class all day, getting stressed out about projects and such...it was great. Then, I thought, ok I'll just go to Fike (the gym) to work out my mood and stress. I thought I was in luck, there was a fitness class, so I wouldn't even have to think about working out, I'd just mindlessly follow the instructor. But oh no, every new-years-resolutioner was in fike last night...so i couldn't even get in the class. So I decided to just run the track...but lasted a little over a mile before I was tripping over more new years resolutioners trying to run/walk. This is why I don't make resolutions, because give it a good month, and the gym will again be near empty in the evenings. (Can't wait!) So my frustrations were rising, so I decided to leave. I didn't feel like going home, so I went to Cooper (the library) to print some slides off for class, but can you guess what happened? Of course, the printer ran out of ink. Thank you budget cuts. So, now thoroughly frustrated/depressed/and generally on the outs, I went home. American Idol provided a brief escape from the day, and then I was exhausted and decided to go to bed. And I was then in full feeling sorry for myself mode, and then got mad at myself for pouting all day (i know, i'm a crazy person). But then, I was praying myself to sleep (as I often do, either on purpose, or accidentally...) I just got the feeling that, "Courtney, it's ok. It's ok to have a bad day every once in a while. Everyone's not happy all the time. You can't control everything. Sometimes the gym's crowded, the printer's broken, and so are some people and your relationship with them. You can't always fix your surroundings." So, then I listened to my amazing roommate's music (Emily Lynch - go find her on myspace - I promise it's worth it!) and actually went to bed at peace.

Point of my rambling: It's ok to have a bad day. It's ok to be grumpy, and even shed a few tears.

You know what else helps? Little orphan Annie...and her great tribute to "Tomorrow" :)


Being In Tune!

Goodmorning! Wow - it's 30 degrees in Clemson this morning! Where is my 75 degrees in December Charleston weather!? ;)

Anyways, I'm sittin here waiting for class to start, and I was reading my older blog...and I thought one of the posts was worthy of re-posting so yall can see it :) Again, surprise surprise, it's about music!

I just watched Rob Bell's Nooma video "Rhythm" and maybe it's because I'm a music nut, but it totally spoke to me. I thought I'd share with you his words:

"When I think of God, I hear a song. It's a song that moves me. It has a melody, it has a groove. It has a certain rhythm. And people have heard this song for thousands and thousands of years, across continents and cultures and time periods. People have heard the song and they've found it captivating and they've wanted to hear more. There have always been people who say there is no song, and who deny the music, but the song keeps playing. And so, Jesus came to show us how to live in tune with the song, that He's the way, the truth, and the life. This isn't a statement about one religion being better than all the other religions - the last thing Jesus came to do was to start a new religion. He came to show us reality in it's raw...that's who God is, that's how the song goes...

...The song is playing all around us all the time, the song is playing everywhere, it's written on our hearts, and everybody is playing the song. See, the question isn't whether or not you're playing a song, the question is, 'Are you in tune?'...

...An infinite, massive, kind of invisible God, that's hard to get our minds around; but truth, love, grace, mercy, justice, compassion - the way that Jesus lived, I can see that. I can understand that. I can relate to that. I can play that song."

He then goes on to talk about how when we're selfish and stingy, we're out of tune - and that it's possible - especially if you know a lot about the music - to get caught up in the technicalities that you can miss the pure beauty of the sounds. He ended on this quote:

"May you come to see that the song is written on your heart. And as you live in tune with the song, in tune with the creator of the universe, may you realize that you ARE in relationship with the living God."

Amen! Let that be our prayer - that HIS song be written on our heart, and that we may constantly be in tune with Him.

Nothin but love,

Woohoo for God teaching me/reminding me what he was teaching me a year ago!


music :)

The past couple days I've been on the lookout for some new music, and after suggestions from some pretty sweet people, It's been a success :)

Patty Griffin has some pretty great folk-ish stuff....especially Heavenly Day and Up to the Mountain. Landon Pigg is relaxing, Eef Barzelay is interesting...as well as Gogol Bordello. They're definitely unique and fun :).

BUT the best find was Lindsey Kane. I've loved her song "Measure of Beauty" for a long time, but now she has a new one called "Least of These". The lyrics are so encouraging...you really need to listen to it!

Ok copy and paste this link into your browser because i can't figure out how to do the link thing...it wasn't showing up...
Measure of Beauty should automatically start to play, and you should listen to it, but then listen to Least of these (it's like 3 songs below it).

Praises for a great Sunday of finding great encouraging music!

And at the end of the day, there's always some good ol' "Turn Your Lights Down Low" by Mr. Bob Marley. :)



So I used to have a blog, but I updated it for like a month...then forgot about it. Now it's been a whole year and I'm just gonna start over! 2009 should be a big year for me...graduating from Clemson, getting a job *hopefully!!*, and much more. I hate New Years resolutions, so I generally don't make them...but I really want to keep up with some people back home, and just speak words I feel like need speaking, so I'll try to do better this year :)

Plus, I just got a sweet new MacBook Pro today, so I gotta waste a bunch of time playin with it!! As for now though, it's almost 1 am and I'm sleepy.

One bit of encouragement for the evening though: "So I commend the enjoyment of life because nothing is better for a man than to eat, drink, and be glad. Then JOY will accompany him in his work all the days of the life God has given him under the sun." Ecc 8:15

Goodnight friends :)