Thursday, January 28, 2010

Top Ten: Random-ness

1. I only like to use super sharpened pencils. It literally makes me happy. Unsharpened pencils are a pet peeve.
2. I love anything with peanut butter.
3. I would rather sing in public than speak in public.
4. I struggle to give people the benefit of the doubt.
5. I respect people a little bit more when they love Anne Lamott.
6. When I was little, my dream was to grow up, move to Nashville, and be a famous country singer.
7. Mayonnaise is my favorite condiment.
8. I love to run away for the weekend.
9. I am really protective of my lunch hour.
10. My top three favorite movies of 2009 were “Julie & Julia,” “Up in the Air,” and “An Education.”

(photo: my last #8).

Forgive me, I am only a work in progress...

I have felt like such a “work in progress” this week. I have been full of anxiety and guilt and been heavy hearted. I’ve been feeling like every day I just need to get through the day and try and give myself as much grace as possible. I’ve been working on two big life lessons this week: giving people the benefit of the doubt and not taking on unnecessary feelings of responsibility. Both do not come easy for me. I am really great at being overly responsible, controlling and bossy about situations and assignments. I am also really great at believing people to be only as good as their worst day. I can be too sensitive as well. It is so hard to be imperfect. Thank God for His grace.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Blame it on Friday-itis

I have got to blog about yesterday. It was the most random crazy day! I kept wanting to say it was “just one of those days,” but that gives the connotation that it was bad, and it wasn’t really. It was more just hilariously random if you have a good sense of humor in the moment, which thankfully (except for maybe two hours of my entire day), I did and it carried me through.
I began the day getting ready in front of a mirror in the dark. The light above my sink area in my bedroom burnt out on Thursday and I haven’t placed a work order yet, so that was interesting. Then I drove to work, looked at my calendar for the day and realized I completely forgot it was the day of the birthday tea for my co-worker! I was in charge of bring salad and hadn’t even bought it! So, I went to an hour and a half meeting with IMT and the Admissions staff and then went to the grocery store and my apartment and then made it back with the salad just in time…in the rain. I made a delicious salad (thanks to my Mom who I literally called at 11am from the grocery store to make sure I got all the items). I made a salad of mixed spring greens, spinach, cranberries, candied walnuts, and feta, dressed in light raspberry walnut vinaigrette. I ran home, tore open bags, got a huge bowl (because the I mistakenly thought the bowl I wanted to use was at my apartment, but it is actually a bowl at my house in San Diego…it is tough to have two residences!), and threw it all together. Oh, and I wasn’t positive I had good salad tongs at my place, so I bought a new pair at the store too! LOL. I know, it was just one of those crazy days. I had to laugh at myself, especially because it is so unlike me to completely forget about a planned lunch I am responsible to bring something to!
The tea was lovely and I spent the rest of the afternoon bugging this poor guy from IMT about a People Soft testing thing I am behind on. I made a great dinner that night out of leftovers. I made penne pasta with leftover chicken, feta, and spinach. It was pretty good. Then I hopped in the car and drove home to San Diego, and although it rained in a few patches, it was a lovely drive. It took the usual amount of time but I could have sworn it only took me an hour. It was that peaceful and lovely! I always appreciate commutes like that.
Once I got home I topped my ridiculous acts of the day by calling into the Haiti telethon about 73 times. Literally. I’m not kidding. My iPhone says 73 calls were placed. (Don’t judge). I desperately wanted to talk to a celebrity. Okay, I really desperately wanted to talk to George Clooney. I also wanted to speak to Anderson Cooper, but realized when I turned on the telethon that he is still in Haiti. But, I would have gladly “settled” for Oprah, Reese Whiterspoon, Justin Timberlake, Julia Roberts, Meryl Streep, or even Brad Pitt. I donated in my first call and didn’t get a celebrity. Then I called back a few times and finally asked to speak to George Clooney and was told “I could not be transferred at the moment” and then called again and asked to talk to a celebrity and was told “they’ve all gone for the night.” Sad day. But hey, I donated for a great cause, and I donated to George’s effort for the cause. One degree closer. Haha. I really am ridiculous. But be honest, that is part of why you love me… right?
It was a good day.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

More than an accessory

Today I wore a scarf that my dear friend Nikki bought for me in Afghanistan. It is beautiful. As I put it on this morning I was reminded of the fact that I am wearing my scarf to work. I am wearing it as a fashion accessory and not as a head covering fabric. I am wearing it to a place where I am respected as a woman and allowed to direct men. I am wearing it as a drive my car, unaccompanied, in public, to go where I please without a male “babysitter.” I wore the scarf today with a prayer in my heart for the women of Afghanistan (and the Middle East in general) who can not go do the things I did today. The things I take for granted at times. I wore the scarf as a symbolic reminder of sisterhood and a personal reminder of my passion and call in life – to bring awareness and help to women’s issues globally and domestically.
My heart is for women’s equality. I know many people think this is a ridiculous goal, especially those in America because here women are “equal,” but they are wrong. Even in America women are not equal. Yes, we have many more rights and freedoms than our sisters in the Middle East, but we still live under stereotypes, less pay, crude comments, objectification, and in a cloak of invisibility about our worth, abilities, and opinions. There is a great article I found through the Huffington Post (sorry Mom) about America and gender equality that really says what I believe and continually try to put into words. One of the best quotes is this:

“Understandably, people will make arguments for how well off American women are in comparison to decades ago or even to other countries. However, claiming that present-day American women have it the best doesn't say anything about how things really are. The comparison should be between men and women rather than among women to accurately understand the glaring chasm. And what's even more frustrating is we've gotten so far away from women's rights being on the table, that many women and girls don't even see the problem.”

Do me a favor and read the article (found here). Read it and know a big piece of my heart and passion, and therefore, me.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Dana Point

This weekend my mom, Ashley, and I went to Dana Point. Last year we went to New Port in an attempt to escape football playoffs, so we decided to make it an annual trip. It was wonderful. Our room was beautiful and overlooked the ocean. We were literally across the street. I could see the ocean out the window while lying in bed, which was wonderful to wake up to. My mom and I spent Friday night talking and went to a lovely dinner at the Chart House. Then Ash joined us on Saturday and we all went to tea at San Juan Capistrano and relaxed in the hotel room. I read on the balcony all afternoon. Then we had some delicious Italian food. Yesterday, we woke up, had breakfast, and came home around lunch time. It was all so relaxing and wonderful and rejuvenating. I did not want to leave…at all. I loved it. I love the ocean. I love the smell and the coastal breeze. I love the way my skin smells like the beach when I am at the ocean. I also loved spending quality time with my mom and sister (missed my Dad though, but knew he was having a great time watching football). It was just the greatest weekend.

Life’s earthquakes

The earthquake in Haiti has been on the world’s mind this week, as it should. I’ve been praying that the Lord will be revealed in that place in a big way. Praying that the earthquake was a way to rock their world open to the message of Christ. I’ve been reading articles and blogs that say God is all over that country. That most of the people there believe in God, but they also practice Voodoo. I have heard others say that Haiti is one of the darkest places they’ve ever been to. That when they look in people’s eyes they see nothing but darkness. My prayer is simply that the Lord will take a hold of the people there and bring peace, comfort, and salvation. My other prayer is that we will all be okay when the big earthquake hits LA (as many say it will). I hate earthquakes. This has made me think about getting an earthquake kit ready for my apartment, just in case, and to save money, because as some have said, the US won’t get nearly as much aid sent to them as third world countries, even though we’ll need it just as badly.
Oh, and in the effort of full-disclosure, I have also been praying that God will use the tragedy in Haiti to speak to the heart of Anderson Cooper. Is that lame? Haha. I just love him and I know God works in mysterious ways, and if Haitians believe in God and missionaries are heading over there, then maybe someone will be a witness to Anderson as he is reporting from there. His voice for the Lord could make a huge impact.
This week I have also been thinking about friends’ personal earthquakes. Earthquakes happen in the blink of an eye. They happen unexpectedly and suddenly life will never be the same. Personal earthquakes have happened in the lives of some good friends. One personally and one in her family. These women’s lives have been shaken to their foundation and I can’t help but think about the “aid” they need too. Life just seems so fragile and uncontrollable this week. It has been such an important reminder about how much we – and especially me – need God and His provision.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Challenging quote I've been pondering:

"Action is Character."

(I heard it in this movie when I saw it again last weekend.)