Monday, May 31, 2010

Screaming Inside

"This Close" - Flyleaf

And it's okay that sometimes we do not have a clear understanding of who we are anymore. It means we are alive, it means we are being challenged to remove ourselves from the comfort of, well, ourselves. When He is screaming from inside to bring you alive, truly, how can you ignore it? It is hard, decimating, mind-altering, and raw to realize it is time to make some changes. Changes that will last forever and that will forever change who you are to those around and more important to the one who loves you most. The Lord will forever weigh on our hearts the truth which we want to refuse with all of our worldly might. We are fighters, it's true, and he wants to strengthen our fight; just not necessarily in the humbling, quiet, repentant way we wish that He would. Sometimes, it's going to be brutal, it's going to be glaring, and it's going to be loud.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

road trips and mountaintimes

"Comme des enfants" - Coeur de pirate

We spent the weekend atop the mountainside of Waynesville, NC and it was just lovely. Jason and I always have the best times road tripping with one another. He drives while I alternate between singing at the top of my lungs, rambling about absolutely nothing, doing crosswords, or rubbing his neck (when he absolutely can no longer hold his eyes open). The hours usually pass by quickly and he gives me as many snack potty breaks as I need! He is the most patient man in the entire world I swear. Also, Jason's sister is pretty much the most adorable pregnant person I've ever seen or known (random aside)
We got to spend time in their new house, complete with cows right outside every window in the morning to greet you & mountain ranges and valleys far beyond the horizon.

Absolutely glorious. I ate way too much food (including sharing in this ultra-massive apple pastry), discovered a newfound love for eggplant, helped Maggie stake her garden (and dream about a garden of my own one day), play MAD LIBS, eat dinner inside the movie theater, Family Matters, home grown basil, and the consumption of more than enough red wine. I love their little town, how it reminds me home and my grandmother's house all at once. I also appreciate that someone is so attentive to all my caffeine needs. :) The song for today is one that Jason and I listened to both on the way there and on the way back home today. I love when I can predict what he is going to say before he even says it, particularly when it comes to music. I get so excited when a song I've just passionately fallen in love with discovered creeps its way into my life in that picture perfect moment in time when you get to share it with someone else. I like to call it a happy accident. When a song inserts itself into the soundtrack of your life and you just want to put it on repeat and breathe. When silence is welcomed and you look around and realize these lyrics were meant for this very moment.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Sing It Out

"Under Pressure" - David Bowie & Queen

Sometimes you have just got to sing it out.

My anxiety and stress levels reached an all time high today, coupled with excessive caffeine intake makes for a case of "EXTREME LAURENTIMES". My insecurities, disbelief, personal struggles, and general muck and guck of life reach an all. time. high. when I feel all sorts of out of control during my situation.

All of this to say, this video with this song pretty much express how I felt internally today, and this song helped to at least sing most of it OUT. Coupled with a good long work out and a little home cooking and I'm a much happier, slightly less extreme Laurentimes.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Pressing on, faithfully & determined

"And there will come a time, you'll see, with no more tears. And love will not break your heart, but dismiss your fears. Get over your hill and see what you find there, With grace in your heart and flowers in your hair."

"After the Storm" - Mumford & Sons

Recently I have come to realize that people, places, and life is not always what it seems. People. will. let. you. down. The actions of one affect a multitude.

And marriage takes hard work, two determined souls, and a ton of open, honest, often brutally honest communication--and love, lots and lots of it.

I am a goofy girl with often lofty dreams, this much is true, but I can tell you one thing right now; through hell, high water and every imaginable or unimaginable demon there is--my marriage will last until the day I die. I promised it over 8 months ago, and I promise it now. Because that's what it is, after all, the ultimate and only promise that really matters between two people on this earth. To love as and because He first loved us.

It wasn't a suggestion, it was a declaration. A sacrificial proclamation, life is not about ME anymore, it's about US...and that us will only get bigger and more real with time.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Starting Today.

I will begin a "song that fits the day" post. Everyday. Call this the beginning of my 101 in 1001 (which I have yet to finalize and post...I'm working on it, had to do some MAJOR reworkings which I found out I got into la escuela). Sunday afternoons are a very easy free kind of feeling/day for me, they should be for any and everyone. I have recently stumbled/discovered/researched my way to several new bands that I am loving listening to. I will share this song that is playing on my "Recently Added" iTunes list, it's got that easy free feel I was talking about. You can listen while reading the rest of the post if you'd like. :)

1) I decided to dye my hair a lovely shade of red inspired by the lead singer of "A Fine Frenzy"'s do and her fancy free attitude.

And here is how mine turned out:

Considering my hair was as dark as the night is long, I'd say that this is a pretty good start. I've had a pretty hairy (pun intended) track record when it comes to hair dye. I wish I knew where the pictures of pink, blue, and black days were...alas all I can show you is what happened the last time I tried to dye my hair red (without consulting a professional).

Oh the joys of undergraduate rebellion. Although I am thankful I chose the hair dying route and not other, more permanent means of pent up, small town fervor (tattoos anyone?). I have a great story, great memories, and great friends to go along with each of my hair-dying adventures. Here is a series of photos that sum up each one, and to serve as a reminder to myself later on in life of those who have been and were so supportive as I came to them pleading for fashion help! :)

My dear friend Hannah & I (pictured above going crazy with silly string). We were the masterminds behind the pink & blue hair movement, much to the parental's chagrin.

The night the trio of best friends decided to throw a rather large party (for Rome, GA...) and dye all three of our heads. We were young, ridiculous, and completely in love with each other (we were also lovingly nicknamed "The Triumverant" that evening). One of our last evening ever together until my wedding day. (4 years later)

There were a few other friends who were there along the lineage of my epic color-changing adventures...
Miss. Katastic
& those who allowed me to use there homes to attempt my first (and ONLY) solo dying mission...
dear Ruel-iO. :)

I have to say I was truly blessed with plenty of "wild" & "crazy" friends to indulge and even, sometimes participate in my shenanigans.

This turned out to be a much more epic post than I originally intended but good nonetheless to remember some of the antics & good laughs that were had. Oh life, never ceases to surprise and remind you of how much and more you have to live.


Monday, May 17, 2010

Mom & Dad

Mom & Dad
(Please ignore the cheese level of this video)
This song will forever and always remind me of my mom and dad and of the times leading up to my wedding day. Through the good, the bad, the copious laughter, joy, anger, and tears at times...we definitely each grew in our own, very necessary ways. We are such a close family and it was integral that we each dealt with my marriage the way we did. My mom was such an incredible helper/planner while my dad was what every little girl needs extremely protective and aware of every possible pitfall. I needed to stand on my own, I needed to know that what and who the Lord had put into my life at such as specific time as this was right for me. Not because my parent's said so and not because it was perfectly timed, but because it was in His plan. And He sure has fulfilled a great one not only in my marriage but in the individual lives of my parents as well. They have both grown to embrace and realize the fleeting joy of life. That these joys must be captured and lived out daily, no more sitting behind a desk, in an office alone. There is true understanding, compassion, and deep love in my family now that I have never known how to express or never felt to this true degree before. I am so blessed.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

This song has been on repeat in my head all day ever since an earlier conversation.
"Live Once" - Ginny Owens

I am in the most incredible place jobwise right now. I get to do several things that I love very much with people I am quickly getting to know and really treasure. God really does know what he's doing when he takes you out of one seemingly hopeless situation and immediately puts you into an incredibly comfortable, fulfilling one. I get to enjoy two of my favorite crafts (lattes and word art). I am handed task after task, praised and appreciated each and every time I deliver another page. I love these women. I love the environment. I am truly blessed to be where I am if only for just a month. But who knows, maybe God will find a way of continuing to have this work out.
I'm just going to enjoy this ride while I'm on it because, as we all know "you only live once so you better think twice."
Thank you Ginny Owens for your brilliant heart and your poetic soul.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Sewing, Strawberries, & Boo-Boo

The Fish Guy works on Sunday through Wednesday late into the night which makes for an interesting (extended!) weekend nowadays until I start school in a few weeks. Therefore, we have Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays together to do his fish tanks, run together, and basically just get into whatever shenanigans we can. Sometimes, well the husband sure can be pretty thoughtful, and he will surrrprise me with the most random wonderfulness ever. He sure does know the way to my heart (and that would be food, sweet smells, & penguins). Here he is upon entering with my special gift.

Yes ma'am these are a bucket full o' fresh picked strawberries. Mammoth in size not to mention the most juiciest fruits you ever did place in your mouth.

It was the most serendipitous of experiences (some random man walked up to he and his friend at the gas station with a business card and the strawberries), although sketchy it was sweet that TFG had a "good feeling" and purchased them because never have I ever placed such a delicious piece of fruit in mi boca.

This past weekend my mini-me oldest niece had her first dance recital!

The whole experience made me nostalgic for my own ballet days. Down to the anticipation of receiving your costumes, wearing make up at the age of 7, and receiving one more extra flower every year we stuck to dance.
(Oh yes, that ridiculously clad one is definitely me)
Made it all worth it, atleast until I could no longer tolerate the monotonous 1st position, 2nd position, plie, grande plie any longer. And then there was modern dance...(cue intense Enya, and water palate unitard). Thank God my mom and dad were so dedicated to the video taping cause. :)
After being inspired again and again by this blog I decided it was time enough for me to try my hand at sewing. True domestication at its finest! I called TFG's mom on a whim and asked if she might want to let me borrow her sewing machine. This weekend, she delivered, and on a lazy Sunday afternoon I unpacked all the goodies and quickly patiently read each and every word.

I proceeded to successfully thread the needle on my fiftyith first try :)

Turned to the first page of beginner's sewing

And began my first attempt at sewing a straight line. (on a torn up piece of one of TFG's ancient of days undershirts)
Hm....the verdicts still out. I haven't lost my fervor/dream yet of making uniquely adorable clothes for my little ones one day. But only time will tell how long this flame will burn after the 100000000 curvy, straight line attempt.

Finally, I will leave you with a picture of TFG's idea of a compromise. He prepared me well in advance for the reality that the Boo-Boo (blanket) I have slept with religiously since I was 2 would be no more. :(

(Make that 1 and a half)
I even thought of giving it to him as a wedding gift, the ultimate symbol of my relinquishing my childish ways (for the MOST part) and giving that which I held most dear to him.

He ended up getting a lovely chess table instead. ;) The sentiment was still there. (I asked to many people their opinion....learned that the hard way) Anywho, I walked into our room the other night to find TFG caressing my Boo-Boo, taunting me really. (Ever since we've been married he's lived in the top of our closet) Seeing my security blanket left me whimpering like a small child. So instead of giving it to me (regardless of MUCH begging and pleading) I moped out of the room and returned to find this.

TFG's bear Fred wrapped in Boo-Boo. Okay, okay I cave I guess I'll snuggle TFG instead. For today :)

Sunday, May 2, 2010

The Dress

Firstly, I would like to share these photos for sentiment's sake. These are from probably, exactly one year ago this month when I received my wedding dress. When I picked it out in the first place it was a cumulative effort between my mom, sister, and I. Seeing as how I am fashionably illiterate I look to those two to help decide sway what I should/should not wear. The dress I choose was actually one my mom practically forced me to try on. I despised the beads, the poofiness factor, and the material but once I put it on and they assured me they could modify that which I despised (beads/material). It was an easy peasey, quick and painless done deal. The really cool thing about the whole process was that Jason's sisters and I all got our dresses from the same store in town (and I just went to find their website online and apparently they recently changed the so it goes). I'm not going to lie, this fact definitely determined swayed my decision to get my dress from them. I am a sucker for tradition and sweet little ironies like so. While I was admiring my soon-to-be purchased dress in the mirror who happens to walk by the store front window but my future brother-in-law...and The Fish Guy had almost come with him! (he was on the way to the Sprint store) Anyways it was a slightly awkward, slightly reassuring occurrence. He gave his familial stamp of approval and TFG's sister proceeded to fume later about how he had seen it before her...
All of this to say when my newly satin, beadless dress finally came in I wanted those women & man closest to me (my mom, The Fish Guy's mom, his & my sister, & my daddy) there to experience it. These couple of pictures pretty much sums up the experience and goofy, giddiness of my family. We are not much for emotional tears, just lots of laughter.

Can you guess which one is my mom? (hint: we're practically twins, 23 years separated)

TFG's mom & sister (she gave birth to the cutie in yesterday's blog about a month after this photo)

I did not intent for this post to turn into a lengthy remembrance of a series of incredibly painless joyful experiences but I am thankful it did. Tomorrow, strawberries and sewing machines!


I decided to include a FINAL PRODUCT picture on this blog entry. Given the degree of "hot messedness" I looked like when we went to pick up my dress that day. This is my daddy and I right before entering the chapel to get marrried. :)

Saturday, May 1, 2010

You know the best thing about today?

I get to spend the afternoon with the cutest little Babycakes in the whole world.

Spend the day making goofy faces, feeding her plenty of treats, putting bows in her hair that make it stick straight up,

kissing her chubby cheeks, listening to her say "Hi babeee" and "baaah" (ball), making her goofy nose noises and "lalalalala" her tongue.

And at the end of the afternoon, after she's all worn out and starts her cute little screech/scream thing?

I get to give her back to her parents and head to my quiet (for now) home.

I love being Aunt Waren. :)

ghmfy6ythhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh And that's all she has to say about that.