Friday, September 11, 2009


Today is September 11th, 2009 and eight years ago today, my country grieved for it's security that was lost, and it's soldiers who were surrendered for our freedom. I am SO thankful and proud for the many men and women who died for me, and I'll never forget them. Today I'm praying for their families... For the comfort of their hearts as they grieve on this day, and that they will see who God is as they walk this path they don't wish to be on. I pray they will know that their family members are NOT forgotten, and just how much I appreciate them.

I remember that day like it was yesterday. We were cleaning up after breakfast, and getting ready for the school day, at home. It was the day after my sister Jaclyn's 8th birthday, and we were also getting the siding on our house redone. Dad called Mom and told her to turn on the TV, and we all(as in all my siblings and my mom) watched in horror. I am pretty sure we didn't get very much homework done that day. Ha! Although I was only 9 at the time of the attacks, I understood a lot about what was happening. I kept hearing Osama Bin Laden and Al-Qaeda and even though I didn't know who they were, it was apparent that this was not right, and that my security was fleeting. I was scared, and I knew it was the end of the world as I knew it to be. The siding man told us that it was his birthday, and, as a 9-year-old, I thought that would be the worst thing in the world. Now, I'm sure it's bittersweet, but I thought that would be worst thing ever to have your birthday on a day that America was suffering, versus my birthday that is smack in the middle of the holidays, and is on a "holiday eve" itself.

I don't really know what to say except for the fact that I'm praying for our lost Americans on behalf of 9/11 and our country. And I'm proud of them. And I have hope. And I know we'll press on, even when the going gets tough. Yes, our country isn't perfect, and I am very aware of its faults, but we're the Grand Ole US of A, and we'll fight for our freedom,... at least, I pray we will.

Remembering Those Who Have Sacrificed,

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Goodbye, Summer!

I am ashamed to realize that I haven't posted since August 7th. I guess my good intentions for this thing called blogging isn't working, yet I press on.

School started this past week. I am really excited about my classes, teachers, and the fact that I am now a Senior in high school, but I just don't know if I'm ready for the school year. I guess I will be ready whether I like it or not! I can't believe I'm a Senior. Being a Senior(like being able to drive, getting married) is just one of those things that I never thought would happen when I was younger. It seemed so wonderful, but I thought it was so far away that it would never happen. Don't worry... I don't even know what I'm talking about. My mind does weird things. I just can't fathom the fact that I only have one year of high school left! Most people(okay... everyone except me) seem to think its crazy, but they get over it, whereas I can not! I just can't wrap my brain around it! I'm getting old! Well... not literally(obviously). I'm just growing up faster than I thought I could. It boggles my mind. Did I mention how crazy it is that I'm a Senior? :-)

This semester I'm taking three "outside" classes, and I'm doing math(two years in one, yuck!), Health, and a Dave-Ramsey-something-or-other-financial-thing-my-mom-asked-me-to-do. I'm taking Psychology and American Sign Language at the community college, and my incredible World View class(the third, and final, one). I know it's not going to be an easy year by any means, but I know it will be good. I am actually looking forward to having a schedule again though, I'm not gonna lie. During the summer every week is so different, and I love knowing what's going on. I just have to work on getting that routine down now!

I know that the worst part of this year is coming to terms with the fact that I won't get to see a lot of my friends nearly as much. This summer has been wonderful for me relationally, and, specifically my grade at church, has grown incredibly close, and I know I'll miss them. In fact, this week I missed all of them so much and I couldn't do anything about it! Come on, it hadn't even been a week! I am so thankful for every single one of them though. Earlier today we got to get together for some lunch, and it was good to see them. Yes, I'll see them on Sundays at church and afterwards most days, but compared to seeing them at least a few times a week, it just isn't the same. I hope and pray we can find a way to stay in touch through all the busyness of our lives.

One last random thing... I have become obsessed with Kari Jobe over the summer. I heard a song of hers on a CD someone gave me, and then I liked it so much I decided to buy her album. I can listen to it over and over again. At the moment my favorites are probably Singing Over Me and You Are For Me, although I truly love every single one.

That's all, Folks! Back to the school-year routine!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Bean Soup

Wow... it's been over a month since I've updated! Yes, I'm still alive over here.

Just to let you know, right now my little brother is watching TV, and I'm actually pulled in by the commercial about space bags. Is that ridiculous or what? Don't worry, I'm not really buying them(yet!).

I will be coming back SOON, so for now I'll finally tell you about VBS (that was at the end of June! It's been a month and a half now!).

So, the group I was in was 2nd grade Purple. My job was to take care of an 8-year-old girl named Claire. I've known Claire for about 5 years or so now, and I go to her house to babysit her(and her siblings), and just help her mom with all that needs to be done to take care of a child with special needs. Yes, she actually has a lot of special needs. For the most part, sweet Claire can not walk, talk, or even feed herself. She is confined to a wheelchair for most of the day(well... not at home so much, but that's beside the point), but honestly one of the sweetest little girls I've ever met. While, honestly, I would have preferred to be helping as a "Shepherd"(what our church calls a leader of a group, eg. 2nd Purple), I was a true servant and acted as Claire's buddy for the week(they wanted me because I know a lot about how to care for her and love on her in the ways she needs).

The group we were in was a hoot though.

Justin, an 8y.o. soon-to-be 3rd grader, was quite fond of my BFF Kara. She was one of the hand motion girls on stage, and her 5'4, 100lb, size ZERO body with blonde hair just about won him over. The fact that she is a real ballet dancer thrilled him as well. He didn't even know I knew her until I went into the Adult Break Room to grab a quick bite, and he peeked in(even though he wasn't supposed to) and saw me talking to her. This is how our conversation went:

Justin: "You know her?!"

Me: "What?"

Justin: *while pointing to Kara* "You know her? The girl that's on stage?"

Me:(not knowing the fact that he liked her... or the extent of his infatuation) "Yeah! That's my friend Kara. We're like this *fingers crossed*"

Justin: "Kara?"

Me: "Yeah. Kara."

Justin: "Oh... I like her." (with a BIG shy smile on his adorable little face)

Me: "Ohhhhhh... Really?"

Justin: "Yep."(with those little eyes that won't look at you because of the "embarrassment".)

... and that was just the start of many conversations that entire week about Kara. I'm just SO glad he didn't go around telling everyone that he loved Kara. Liking I can handle, loving is a bit too far in my(humble) opinion.

The next day when I told him I had spent the night at her house, he was just about floored. He ended up giving her a note on a pink notecard that read: "Kara. I like you. *heart* Justin". Although the only gift she received from him was a bag with bean soup(well... beans and seasonings that was supposed to be given to someone who needed was part of our outreach. so much for that!), she knew about his liking of her.

It was probably the highlight of my week. I told Kara that if she ever had any doubts about anyone thinking of her as beautiful, she could just think back to the week that Justin was head over heels inlove like her.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Here are some numbered points just because I have a lot of things to say, and I don't feel like taking effort to write it out!

1. This week has just been the epitome of laziness for me, but I've loved every second of it. I've spent the majority of my time sleeping, eating, and watching Lost. I've also gotten to spend time with my family, and grow in my relationships with my friends. I love them all dearly.

2. Last week(not this past, but the one before) was VBS week and we had a ton of fun, but I'll have to give you the lowdown on it in a separate post cause it's just too much and I get the feeling this is going to be a long post anyways(and I don't have time!).

3. Yes, we had a blast in Port Aransas. I was kind of worried about a few things, but they all settled nicely and we had a wonderful time. I love my Kara and Hannah!(another post on that too... soon to come.)

3. I just heard about a little girl, Kate McRae, the other day and my heart is just broken for this family. Having gone through tragedy and sickness(twice!), I feel like I know what they're going through(even though I haven't had to experience cancer quite like that), and I can easily tell they are taking it very hard. From what I can see, they are such a sweet young family, and Kate is just the cutest thing you've ever seen. Would you join me in prayer for them? If anyone/anything can heal sweet Kate, it is the hand of our Father, the Great Physician.
You can get more info off this touching video Kate's parents made, off her CaringBridge site, or her dad's twitter statuses.

I'm off to Grandma's for the 4th of July and to celebrate some birthdays(including mine! Well... half birthday, but it's because mine is in stinking December and too close to other holidays!)!

I know I'm forgetting things I wanted to mention, but I can't think of what it is right now. Oh well! I might be on again later(whenever I can find the time, now that I'm thinking about my schedule!). Oh, and I'm leaving tomorrow to go work in the kitchen again at camp. Same camp, same kitchen as a few weeks ago. It should be fun.

I hope you have a wonderful 4th, celebrating our independence!


Wednesday, June 17, 2009

My Week and Wilderness Ridge

Okay. Here's the Wilderness Ridge info. Last week, Sunday through Friday, I went to Wilderness Ridge to work in the kitchen. My little brother Michael went for the week, and since he gets homesick easily, he wouldn't go without me. I just absolutely love that place. If you don't remember(or perhaps I've never mentioned it on here!), thats the camp where Stephen(my brother who passed away) worked and it was like his second home. My family has been going and volunteering there for many, many years. Well, I decided the year after Stephen died that I wanted to go up there and work at least 1 week every year just so that way I can remember the place he loved, and help with a ministry that he loved. I also just go cause I love it there too. 

Like I said, I worked in the kitchen. Sandy Hunt, Sandy Watson, Kathy, Betty, and Hannah were all there. Sandy W was basically just there for serving and cleaning up, but I had such a good time with those ladies. I just love getting to be with... let me say... advanced in years... ladies. They have such a zest for life, and are crazily wise and fun to talk to. 

Hannah(Albers) was there, and she's just a grade younger than me so it was fun. Our families have similar age/sex kids, and we've all been friends for years. Normally I'm "paired" with her older sister Clare and Jaclyn hangs out with Hannah, but it was nice to catch up. They moved to Austin when I was about 5 or so,  but we've still all been friends. They are one of those families that you don't get to see very often at all, but your families have been friends forever. It was a lot of fun to get to know her a little bit better though, especially since we don't normally do things together. She is such a sweet girl. 

We baked a ton, and it was so hot! With no air conditioning, 100 degree weather, and baking all day with two commercial ovens on, its easy to say that it got pretty miserable. I loved it though. I can put up with it for a week to be with those ladies and serve along those guys. One thing I enjoy about working during the summer(vs. retreats in the fall/spring) is the fact that we don't have to do dishes! The SALT(Servant And Leadership Trainee?) crew does it for us. Those guys are a hoot! They are all 15-17 or so, and they are silly as can be. The ladies get a little frustrated with them at times, but I enjoy seeing the guys be like that. When girls and guys are together, we just act a little different! Not bad different, but just different. Since I'm the odd one out, and theres about 70 boys(and men) and 10 ladies(only 2 "girls"), we're so outnumbered that they act like they do with just boys, and we just deal with it. I like seeing that side of them. At times, it can be quite disgusting at times, but us girls can be gross too! 

I think people tend to think I go there just because of all the boys, but I honestly could care less. They are just friends to me, and its not like I'm going to get to know them! They all live in Austin(for the most part)! I'd have to say Jay, Jacob, Matt(Daniel E's friend), Daniel E(Ellen's brother), Jesse, Stephen, EJ, Joel, Chris, and Daniel H were my favorites to work with. There was also a camper(I guess he's 12 or so? 10? Idk) named Zach who was just hilarious. We have this thing, and always give each other crap and mess around with each other. He always says I'm mean to him, but I think he's only saying that cause he enjoys it? I guess I need to tone it down next year. I don't know if he's serious or not. I'm completely kidding around with him,  but I'm not completely sure if he knows that or wants that. He was there last year, and we did the same thing, but I just don't know. I don't want him to be turned off of the camp by me. This sounds so serious now that I'm writing it down, but its really not. Also, Aiden and Rodney were just the cutest little guys. I hope they never read this! They are both like 7 years old, but they are the cutest things you've ever seen. There was also a little asian boy who was too cute, and he would ALWAYS be the first one in line for dessert. I wonder if he even ate lunch or dinner? I honestly don't know. 

Hannah and I talked about a girls camp all week long. You see, this camp is just a boys camp in the summer. During the school year, they have retreats, and they'll have Father-Daughter retreats(our church went there for one in March), but during the summer it's only boys! I love working with the boys, but I want to go to camp there SO bad! The Albers have been involved in the camp just as long as we have, and Hannah has always wanted to also! I'm guessing everyone thinks girls would be too prissy and just plain too girly to go to a "wilderness" camp, but I think that most girls would have a fun time. Yeah, it depends on the girls, but I think we'd do the same things but just in our girly version(with makeup on, and slowly and cautiously). On the retreats the girls always have fun, so hopefully we convinced them to consider doing just one week (or a few days as a trial) for girls. At the very least, they'd have the daughters of all the people who have been involved for forever(like me, my sisters Jaclyn and Julianna, Hannah, her sister Clare). That would be 5 girls, and they've put on a camp that small before!

Oh... there was a big storm heading our way when we were there! There were tornados in Austin and all, and we were prepared to wade it out, but by the grace of God it died down and missed us. The camp could've really used the rain, but we were glad to be safe.

Another highlight was swimming in the pool. I've probably gotten to swim in that pool probably twice in my life. During the summer they don't really let girls go swimming cause all the boys are in the pool (and normally I'm the only young girl working. I've never gotten to work with Hannah before... so I've never asked), but Hannah and I got to go swim! After we had been swimming for a couple hours, the SALT crew came and got it, and that was fun. Unknowingly, the storm was on it's way so we had to get out of the pool after a few minutes. :-( Next time I guess.

Oh! Isabelle got to come spend a day with us too! She's Todd's daughter, and the directors(Sandy and Ron Hunt) granddaughter. She is 4 or 5, and just too cute. We had a lot of fun, and Hannah and I took her swimming. She LOVES swimming. Her sister is deaf, so she knows ASL too. It was fun to use my limited knowledge with her.

Now I'm back to my time on the beach! I'll update you when I get back!

Much love, 

Sunday, June 14, 2009

My Festivities have Begun!

Yes. I know, I know, it has been incredibly too long since I've updated... Don't judge me. 

Summer's here! My festivities have begun! This past week I've been at Wilderness Ridge working in the kitchen. I'll have to give you the lowdown another time. 

I went to the Austin area last Saturday(the 6th) to go to Krause Springs for my friend Shannon's birthday. I drove(since I needed the car to get to WR), and Shannon, Hannah, and Kara all rode with me. It was a fun little road trip. All of us, along with most of Shannon's family were there, and we had a fun time. I accidentally, somehow, got algae in the bed of my toenail(sorry for that visual), and we ended up having to cut off most of my toenail to get it out. Who knew a freaking toenail could hurt so much and take 3 hours to fix? Well, I don't know if it really took that long, but it sure did feel like it! It still hurts over a week later, but its healing up pretty nicely. After that, I made the mistake of pulling Kara into the pool. Not a good idea. NOT a good idea. She was so upset with me, and I still feel bad about it. We were hanging out last night, and she told me she already forgot about it and was over it, but I still feel bad. Our relationship was growing nice and steadily, but then I did that. I guess its not that big of a deal, but I'm just such a people-pleaser, and I don't like people being mad at me. 

The next day, on Sunday, I left a little early to go spend some time with my friend Ellen. I don't know if I've mentioned her here before, but she's 13 and we're buddies. I was her counselor at camp last year, and she just has two older brothers(who work at WR), so I'm her big sister/mentor/friend. She(and her brother Daniel) is a redhead, so we have that little connection too. Their family is awesome, just an example of a functional, God-loving, each-other-loving, family. Anyway, I picked her up from their church, and we went to the mall. We didn't think about it beforehand, but there was practically nobody in the mall cause it was a Sunday morning, and most places were closed! We just walked around for a while, got a pretzel to share(I've never had a soft, Auntie Anne's pretzel before. They are scrumptious!), and then went to Wal-mart to walk around some more. I couldn't really recommend places to go since I don't know the area, but she didn't really know what she wanted to do, so thats what we ended up with. We were supposed to go eat somewhere, but we ended up just going back to her house and eating there. I had never been to their house before, and I loved getting to see her room, see her parents and one of her brothers(Patrick) again, and spend some more time with her. I just love that girl to pieces. 

From there, I went to Wilderness Ridge and made it there in the nick of time! Actually, Ellen's brother Daniel worked at WR the same week as me. It was a fun weekend, and a great precursor to my week at camp. 

Tomorrow I'm off to Port Aransas with the youth group at my church! I'm so excited, but it doesn't seem like it should be here already! Maybe I'll write about WR if I have some down time. I like to just sit on the balcony, listen to the waves on the beach, and write, so we'll see. 


Thursday, May 14, 2009

John Stossel and Dallas

Have I ever told you that I am a little obsessed with the show 20/20? Well, I am. It's not one of those shows that are just for entertainment, but it's a news type of show. They always have different views than the "typical" or "mainstream" and I really enjoy listening to what their theories are about. Also, I just love John Stossel. NO, I don't think he's cute or charming or whatever people think of when I say I love him, but I just love how he thinks outside the box and presents facts. I don't always agree with his point of view, but he's entertaining to watch anyways.

I am finally making headway on my summer schedule. It has taken a ridiculously long time. I am so indecisive! 

I'm not sure if I mentioned it on here before, but I went to Dallas last week to visit my favorite person in the whole world. John and I went to visit Hannah, and we had a splendid time. Originally, Hannah had invited me and our other friend Kara to come up and we could go to Homeschool day at Six Flags Over Texas. Kara couldn't make it, so John joined us instead. It was certainly an interesting few days because of the face that John and Hannah ended their dating relationship just a few short months ago, but they are still good friends and we had fun. I miss Hannah so much now that she has moved, but I am grateful that I got to visit. We got to take a tour around town, visit the local grocery store, and eat us some Chili's! We got there Wednesday evening, went to Six Flags on Thursday, and then just hung out until we came back on Saturday around lunchtime. Hannah got a new phone while we were there, and it was fun messing around with it. I love figuring out new gadgets. 

Until next time...

Friday, May 1, 2009

Are You Kidding Me?

Okay, seriously, why does it have to be May already? This crazy year has gone by so fast.

Last night I went to see Fast and Furious with Brianne, Connor, Kendra, and Brianne's friend Leah(I think? I hope thats the right name). It was fun, and I was glad I got to see them and spend some time with them. I don't know why, but I just never actually hang out with Kendra, Brianne, or really, any of the kids in TSMAC these days. I hang out with the girls in my grade, but not really anyone else, and I miss it. That said, I hated the movie we saw. A couple weeks ago I had heard it wasn't very good, and had alarming amounts of boobage and butt in it, but I wanted to spend some time with those girls so I let those reviews go right past me. Well, on my way there and throughout the whole movie I was thinking about it, but it didn't stop me. Whoops! When they said it was "the ultimate guy movie" it all makes sense now. I just hope none of the guys I know see it, except I know that many of them have. The lack of clothing, lesbian scenes, tons of cars, and no particular sense in the story line makes me understand why it was a guy movie. Well, the lesbian scenes didn't really make me understand, but they were definitely present and unashamedly there. Ugh! THIS is why I don't go see movies in the theaters that often. There's just nothing I want to see! OI'm one who'd like to go to the movies and see cheesy, cute movies like High School Musical 3, Hannah Montana, and Facing the Giants. Since this last movie, those were seriously the last ones I saw in theaters. No, I don't even like HSM, and Hannah Montana drives me up the wall with the way she's supposed to be(and IS) and major role model for thousand, perhaps millions, of little girls, yet she acts and dresses horribly. Don't even get me started. It just makes me want to cry. My generation(I guess? I just mean the people within... say... 10 years of when I was born) didn't even have her and we're still completely messed up with our self-image! I'm praying hard for these young girls. Back to what I was saying, I am completely content with staying at home and watching a movie by myself! Wait... did I say I enjoy watching movies by myself? Uh-oh... I wasn't supposed to add in that part. The Sound of Music, Radio, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Kate & Leopold, How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, and Anne of Green Gables to name a few. I'll even be fine watching a movie at home with someone. I'm just not that picky with movies. Really, the only reason I watch movies is for conversation. If nobody ever asked me about movies, or if I could actually make conversation instead of getting to where I just say "so what movies have you seen lately? Oh, I saw that too! Did you like it?" Well, since I've been writing for so long it's now the 2nd of May, so I should end it right here.

Until tomorrow, 

Friday, April 24, 2009

My Ramblings... (What else would you expect?)

Goodness gracious! It has been too long since I've updated! I'm afraid its only going to be random things written numerically. What happens is that I'll miss one day (or one thing that happened) and then after a while it just gets to be too much, but I still want to write about the thing that I originally wanted to write! Whatever, this is so pointless and confusing, and here I go... rambling. I guess it fits the name of the blog!

1. Two weeks ago today, there was a baptism service for our youth group at a students' home. We used their pool for the baptisms, and 7 people got baptized! It was a special time\I just love baptism. People getting baptized, the idea and reasoning behind baptism, the whole shebang... I love it. I'm excited to know that I can walk this ever-so-important walk with them, and now I know they are game.

2. It's over. I quit my job. You think I'm probably kidding, but I kid you not. I have loved the opportunity, and the pros of it(like wonderful hospitality... ridiculous closeness to my house), but thats not what I will be doing when May 6th rolls around. I gave my two week notice, and I'm done next week. I'm doing another list:
               a. There was simply just horrible cussing(my boss cussing at me... co-workers), which I know I can handle and isn't abnormal but I just don't want to put up with it and make myself struggle if I don't have to! Also, my dad has a lot of experience in retail/food industry, and he said a manager shouldn't be cussing(and there shouldn't be very much cussing in the workplace at all) but its not against the law or anything, but just courtesy.
               b. Another thing I was/am frustrated about is the schedule. This week, I freaking didn't get my schedule until today. Monday night my manager told me I was working this morning, but the rest I found out today when I look at the official, on paper schedule! Thats just plain nuts! My whole life doesn't revolve around this job, and its not good business-running to do that. 
               c. There's a really mean cook there who works at night, and I feel very threatened by him. EVERY time I see him, he make some snide(but serious) remark about me being "professional" and "doing my job". I was there one night, and wasn't even on duty(!), but he was yelling at me and made me cry(although I just left and didn't let them see me cry, but cried in my car)! He just makes me so upset and I don't want to work in that environment! 
               d. I'm just not proud of working there. Their food(especially at first) would take 20 minutes to get out the window, just for a chopped beef sandwich! I don't even want people to go in and see me because it's unpredictable how the service/food will be! It all depends on who's working. Also, it's a barbeque place, and we have 4 sauces(original, smokey, pineapple, and jalapeno), but we only give out 3! We've been out of original sauce for a few weeks now. They have a warehouse where they keep a lot of sauces, but there was none left and they had to order some from the people who actually make it. They shouldn't have even opened! About a week or two after we opened they realized it. They should've known they needed to order more before they opened. There's just no excuse. The thing is... I have to be the one to tell all the customers cause I'm a cashier! The managers and the owners don't care that we don't have the original sauce cause they don't have to deal with the customers! 
               e. I am going to be gone for a lot of the summer(working at camps and such) and knew they would need to hire someone else anyways. Well, I'd be going if they'd let me off.  
               f. (One more thing... I promise:-)) I applied and got the job as a cashier. I didn't know what the responsibilities were because this restaurant isn't a chain, and this is their first-ever place. I figured I'd be possibly taking food out to people, (obviously) taking orders, and keeping the front counter dry. I was thinking I'd possibly have to keep the drink/condiment counter clean/stocked as well, but I didn't think I'd be doing bussing! After I was hired they got some bus boys, but the thing is that the bus boys decided they wanted to cashier instead of bus, so now we're all cashiers and bus boys! I mean, its not that insane to have a cashier doing bussing, but it's not what was supposed to happen. Even though I didn't have specific job duties, I knew they were getting bus boys, and I didn't expect to bus. Now.... there are tons of plusses to this job, don't get me wrong.  I love how hospitable my manager is. He has no problem if we're late(as long as we let him know), told us at the beginning not to be shady about taking money but if there was a problem then to just come talk to him and he'd give us money/loan us money... just don't take it, offered to give anyone rides at times if they need it, and is generally grateful for people. I love him, but they just don't run a business well. That's it. I'm done with this topic. 
3. After all that, I'm going to apply to work at Chick-fil-a tomorrow. My friend works there, said she could get me a job. I figured it would make more sense to apply after summer's over, but she said she knew they would let me off after only working a month and  hopefully I can drag in a little money. I'm really excited. See... I wanted to work at Chick-fil-a before I even started working at Bobbie Que's, and I applied there at least twice, but they never hired me cause it didn't ever work out. This time, though, I'm hoping everything will work. I know I'll like it a lot more than Bobbie Que's. 
4. I've been amazed at how fast this year has gone by! I am going to be Senior... yes... a SENIOR in just about a month or so. Are you freaking serious?! Holy crap! Every time I think about it I just get a daze. It's exhilarating to me, but scary. Well, not scary, just makes me anxious. I don't know. It's just the weirdest thing in the world that this time next year I'll be getting ready to graduate and leave to go overseas. Woah.

5. JJ's message this past Sunday was incredible. I just hope this catches on and we can (God can) start a movement in our youth group because of all he said. Slightly off topic, I appreciate his honesty with us. I think pastors tend to get stuck in the thought pattern that everyone thinks they are perfect, and they have to live up to that so they can't be real. Personally, I think we don't want/expect pastors and leaders to feel that way, but somehow they think it. I think what the congregation wants is for them to be vulnerable, just like they expect us to be. 

Well... I'm plum tired of typing. I'f you've even made is this far, I know you know why my hands are tired! Thank you for letting me write all this. I know if I didn't do this lot-of-posts-in-one I would never get around to say the things I want to! I'm going to go crash in bed. Hopefully next time I won't wait so long so the posts aren't as freakishly long. Oh! I forgot to write about the dance!.... tomorrow will come...

Much Love,

(what do you think of the signature? I don't know. Eh.)

Sunday, April 12, 2009

I Will Rise

Happy Easter! I've realized, just last night, that the devil has been trying to take my entire week! This past week was meant to reflect on my Savior, His death, and resurrection, and it's been one of the worst weeks for me, emotionally at least. I started off the week great, and nothing has really happened that is different than normal, but Satan has been tempting me to focus on my faults, sins, and frustrations instead of putting my eyes on Him. Unfortunately, he almost got away with it, but I wouldn't let him do it. No way, Jose!

I absolutely love Easter. Easter is such a happy holiday, and it is truly a favorite of mine. I love everything Spring, pastel colors, and sadly, candy(Creme eggs?! Oh my). I love the tradition of going to Mamo's(my dad's mom) to get together with the extended family. I love hunting for Easter eggs. I love dyeing eggs. I love singing "Christ the Lord is Risen Today" and "My Redeemer Lives"(even though we didn't do either today... sad day). I love to reflect on what God has done to/through my life, and praise Him for it. I love realizing all over again just HOW MUCH my Christ loves me, and the fact that He lives! But every single year, without fail, the week before Easter is tough. Satan is just tempting me in all ways, and won't let down. I have to try SO hard to concentrate and flee from temptation. 

Easter is also hard just because its a holiday. On major holidays, everything is pretty much cancelled and it's family time. Family time is not good when you've lost part of it. People go to church as a family on holidays as well, especially since all children's programs are cancelled, but for people who have lost someone find those times hard. For my family at least, we can do all the healing and be fine during the whole year, but when the holidays come, it just gets hard! I don't like sitting as a family on Easter Sunday or Christmas Eve just because it's the biggest reminder that my lovely brother is no longer with us. No, I haven't been in denial the past 2 1/2 years or anything, but that's when it hits the hardest. When we go out to lunch as a family and he's not there, it's alright. I miss sometimes too, or my sisters will go out with their friends instead and it's normal, but at holidays, esp. for church, is when EVERYONE is there. No family member misses, and I think that's why it's the hardest. No words can express how much I miss him. There will be a day, and it will be glorious. I am so grateful for a God who has saved me, but I'm also just as grateful for a God who saved Stephen. It is so challenging just to live my everyday life without Stephen, but I can do it and have joy and hope because He Lives and has extended the life He gives to my little self. It's alright, I'll make it, I'll turn tragedy to triumph. Today we sang a song in church that I absolutely adore. It's called "I Will Rise" by Chris Tomlin and is pretty much my lifesong. 

I Will Rise
By: Chris Tomlin

There's a peace I've come to know
Though my heart and flesh may fail
There's an anchor for my soul
I can say "It is well"

Jesus has overcome
And the grave is overwhelmed
The victory is won
He has risen from the dead

And I will rise when He calls my name
No more sorrow, no more pain
I will rise on eagles' wings
Before my God, fall on my knees
And rise
I will rise

There's a day that's drawing near
When this darkness breaks to light
And the shadows disappear
And my faith shall be my eyes

Jesus has overcome
And the grave is overwhelmed
The victory is won
He is risen from the dead

And I will rise when He calls my name
No more sorrow, no more pain
I will rise on eagles' wings
Before my God, fall on my knees
And rise
I will rise 

And I hear the voice of many angles sing
"Worthy is the Lamb"
And I hear the cry of every longing heart
"Worthy is the Lamb" 

I will rise when He calls my name
No more sorrow, no more pain
I will rise on eagles' wings
Before my God, fall on my knees 
And rise
I will rise

I just love that song so much. It's wonderful to know that some day I will leave this hurting, painful, sinful, sick earth and go to be glorious with Christ. As an  added bonus, Stephen will be there too. I just honestly can't wait. Another way I interpret this song is as an encouragement for my life here on earth. I can rise up against my fears, faults, and tragedies to follow Him! I am not bound by what I have done or circumstances around me, but I can be free to serve my King. I WILL rise, and I don't have to stay in my pity, grieving, depressed self. God will rescue me and give me hope if I let him. I can rest in that, and I do. Thank you is not enough.

Here's a video of Chris talking about what led him to write the song. It seems like he wrote it just so I can praise my God and be encouraged. You can hear the actual song in the background. I am blessed to have hope. I will rise.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Weekend Recap/Off to Work

This weekend was such a blessing. Yes, it's hard to keep your cool when things go wrong and your dad is in charge, but it went, and it was alright. The girls(as in... my two sisters) and I led in worship(and some silly songs) and we just did it. All three of us tend to let our nerves get in the way, but we did it and didn't let our feelings get in the way. I didn't get to spend very much time with my dad because he was working (the biggest downside to him doing it), but I'm glad the other girls got to spend time with their dads.

We also got to visit with the Ede family because they were working the retreat(Thank you for all the workers!). They are such all wonderful, and I enjoy every minute I am with them. My Ellen(she's 12) is my favorite person ever, and she is just loads of fun. Hopefully we'll get to see them soon!

Now I'm off to work. I need to get off this thing and get ready! Sheesh!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Work, Camping, and Owning your Junk

I guess work has been keeping me busy! It has been a week since I have updated! So far work has been coming along alright, even though I have pressed the panic button, forgot to give someone $8 of change, and doubled an order so there was a $30 order that never got paid for. Sigh. I sure hope they don't fire me. At least I'm the one who has made over $20 in tips(two nights in a row, I might add) compared to the other girl who made $3! They better be glad with split the tips between all of us. I have my issues with work(like all the sailor-like cussing...) I enjoy most of it. My manager(who unfortunately is one of the cursers) is really nice, treats us like family, and genuinely cares about us. I mean, seriously, this guy told us to make sure we don't steal or anything, but if we need money or whatever just come to him and we can figure something out but don't think about just taking it cause "you'll get your a** whooped and my mean side will come out. This is the nice me right here, and you don't want to see my other side". I know he doesn't sound too nice, but he really is. You can't really tell unless you see him for yourself(and you could see me at the same time!). Enough about that.

Tomorrow Jaclyn, Julianna, Dad, and I will be leaving for the Father-Daughter Retreat with our church. Dad(and all of us who have been sucked into it) has been the main coordinator/planner, and he is so detail-oriented I hope us girls get to spend at least two minutes with him! We shall see... The main thing I'm worried about is the music my sisters and I are supposed to do. They haven't even told me what songs we're singing, so I hope I can play them! Deep breath, Loribeth, deep breath. This has been one frustration of my week. Lord, calm this anger raging in my heart. Well... it should be good. Pray for it all if you feel called. We appreciate prayers on our behalf. 

A friend of mine tagged me in a note on Facebook, and it brought a few things to the front of my mind. I just remembered how important it is to own your mistakes, heartbreaks, sins, scars, memories, and sad circumstances. You can't just try to tuck it away, because it will always be there and eat away at who you are and how you relate to people(and to God).  You have to take those things, thoroughly examine them, and call them your own... I don't mean you should brag or be prideful about sin or bad things, but just take them and say "Yes, this horrible thing occurred in my life, BUT My God has redeemed/saved/restored me through it!" If you don't own it and let God use it, then Satan will! We do not want Satan taking a hold of it, because all he will do is ruin it and make it be in vain. If we're going to go through all that junk, don't we want God to be able to use it?! I don't want to go through all of that pain, grief, and searching just to let me be in vain. It has gotten to the point where I'm protective about all of it! I would just be appalled if Satan got it! There is so much excruciating pain I've had to go through(and still do deal with) with my brother Stephen's death, and there is no way I want to let Satan use it! I want to just let God get all over it just so the Devil can't! God has given/allowed some things to bring Him the greatest glory and bring me ever closer to Him, and I don't want to waste it all because of my lack to deal with it! I can't stress how MUCH pain and hurt that I want God to use! To Him be the glory! Amen!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

A Spring Break Week

I am having an exciting Spring Break! It tends to get better every year. Thank goodness!

I've done boring things like cleaning, watching tons of movies, sleeping, wasting time on this blog and Facebook(even thought I hate the new one!) and everything else you can think of. I really do enjoy doing all of those things, but thank goodness my regular schedule doesn't allow time for things like watching too many movies and spending so much time on Facebook and blog! I would be ruined forever.

On a more exciting note, I have gotten to hang out with some friends this week as well. Tuesday night I went to my friend Shannon's house for a sleepover. Mary, Hannah, and Kara were all there too, and we had a blast. They are truly my deepest, best friends. I am so thankful for them. I would seriously not be here right now if it weren't for their consistent, ever-loving, always caring relationships with me. We all get along so well, and have a fun time together, but we also have many serious conversations that can certainly end up in tears because of our sharing in joy and grief with one another.

I also got to go to dinner, and then back to my house for board games with some friends. We were supposed to go bowling, but it was too crowded. See, the original plan was to come back to my house to hang out, but then when my little brother Michael got the flu, we decided that would not be a good idea, so we agreed to go bowling instead. Obviously, the bowling thing didn't work out because it was too full, so we came back home and played board games outside where Michael didn't leave his germs. We played Quelf(VERY fun game if you've never heard of it), spoons, and then I whipped out my guitar and we sang for a little bit. It was a lot of fun, but I wish we did things like that more often. Who knows, maybe we will!

Okay. THIS is exciting news! I have officially landed myself a job! Mmhmm. A REAL job, and not just babysitting. I will be working at Bobbie Que's Smokehouse, which is literally only about 5 minutes from my house. It was supposed to open today, so I went in to start, but apparently they decided to push the opening back a day and forgot to tell the cashiers. Whoops! The poor things. It's not a chain or anything, but just a "family" business sort of thing, and they are learning what to do to open a restaurant! No joke, I called to get info about applying, and was supposed to start today. Does every job application go that quickly? That is just insane. I'm not complaining though, don't worry! The weirdest thing about this new job of mine is that, ironically, I don't like barbeque! Yes... I AM a Texan(born and raised) yet I do not like barbeque. My family and friends enjoy letting me know that is against the rules, but what can I say? To put it briefly, I am excited about this job! The family (and family friends, I think) that own it are really sweet, and were genuinely sorry they didn't let me know ahead of time about the delay in opening. Although there's been some communication problems, I am confident this will improve once we all get into the hang of things. :-)

And there you have it, my week of Spring Break in a nutshell. We'll see how my last couple days end up. 

Sunday, March 15, 2009

This week is Spring Break for all the PSK's(Public School Kids). I took last week off(even though I probably should have done my work) and am excited for this week too. I tend to go through spurts of being anti-social, not talking to anyone, not hanging out, or wanting to do anything but watch movies and read books for a week or so every.. oh... couple months or so. I'm just hoping this week isn't one of them, especially since it's starting out like it will be! What thrills me is the fact that I will only be babysitting one time this week! :-) I am too excited. I think I have gotten burned out on babysitting, just because I do it so often(at LEAST 3 times a week... often up to 5 or 6). Bleh. 

After church today I went to a meeting for the Short-Term Missions at my church. Just a few months ago we hired a new, incredible, inspiring missions pastor, and I am elated that he's here. I just can't wait to see what God is going to do.

And... as randomly noted as can be, I am falling in love with Pandora Internet Radio. Well, I don't love it, obviously, but I sure do like it! My only problem is that I can't think of anything to type in! Go to and listen if you wish.

In going with the randomness of today's post, I'd also like to mention that I have no clue what I'm doing this summer! Okay, I lied, because I do have an idea, but that's all I have, ideas. I know one thing I'm not doing(going to Mexico), but I have 3 camps I want to be at all summer! I have to split up my time, and I'm afraid I will choose the wrong weeks and miss out! I need to just get a move on it. A new chance came about today for this summer, though. Greg(the missions pastor) is trying to get a group together to go to New York this summer, about he same time as the Mexico trip. New York was supposed to be for Seniors through college(I'm a Junior) so I thought it was out of the question, but apparently not! Greg said that if there are other student who would like to go, and aren't going to Mexico(because they will be at about the same time) are welcome as long as the youth pastor, JJ, agrees. I'm not sure why yet, but I just feel the need to go on this trip. I hope I'm not just listening to my feeling because I respect Greg and would always jump at the chance to go on a trip with him, but I'm listening to a conviction from God that I am supposed to go to New York, and thats why I was not supposed to go to Mexico. See, about a week before and after my last post, I had been considering and praying about going to Mexico with TSMAC(The Student Ministry At Cypress... my youth group. Pronounced tee-smack.). I went last year, was blessed immeasurably, and I'm seeing the effects of it even now, yet I am not going this year. Are you wondering why? Good question! :-) To be honest, I had never really seriously prayed about a mission trip before, and I had a lot to learn. My reasoning was "Why not? Why would God NOT want me to go on a mission trip? He always loves it when I serve others, right?" Well, it's not that He doesn't want me to serve Him, BUT that Mexico is not the way I will bring Him the greatest glory right now. I know it sounds a little silly, but this was consuming my life for a couple weeks! I couldn't concentrate on my school work, was preoccupied most of the time because I was searching for a Word from God! When I first felt the conviction that I shouldn't go on this trip, I was like "Oh... I'll just pray and God will tell me. No big deal!" but God wanted to show me to truly depend on Him, even if it was through the decision of a small, week-long trip. He clearly told me through prayer, Scripture, and encouragement from others that going to Mexico is not for me this year. So sad, but I am glad to help the team prepare to leave and have a successful time there. I'm going to miss my Mexico friends even more! A blessing though, from this decision is that my incredible friend Kara isn't going either, so it will be much easier on the both of us who will be sitting at home or doing something else while many of our friends are on the trip.

Well... that turned out a lot longer than I thought it would. I can get a little carried away. I have some serious prayer and meditation to do about this New York possibility. 

Goodnight, and I hope you have a splendid Spring Break!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

It has been a week since I've updated! Oh gee... I need to dedicate a whole post to the retreat, and I am STILL thinking about things from it, so that will have to wait, but I have other (not-so-)exciting things to write about!

At this very moment, as in, right now, I am visiting my wonderful friend Hannah in Dallas! She moved up here around Thanksgiving, and although she visits home quite often, I desperately needed to come see her in her new home! I actually love it up here. The area that she lives in is quite new, and I absolutely love new things! We leave tomorrow to go back home, and I'll miss this break. I should just be thankful for even getting to visit and for my parents' permission to leave home during a school week, but it is just so stinking hard. Sigh.

Yesterday was Stephen's birthday. It wasn't very different for me, but I guess that's probably because I'm not with my family and didn't get the full emotional experience. Wow... right now I h ave a 20-year-old brother. How does that happen? I remember thinking about how wonderful it would be when Stephen turned 20, and I'd be 17, and we could both drive! It was amazing to think about how wonderful and perfect life would be when we would be grown up! It is seriously hard for me to believe that I/my family is getting so old! That baby brother of mine is now 9? What is happening? Life is leaving and slipping right by! On another note, I guess it's good that I'm realizing this now instead of later? I think it's making me appreciate life and the days I have here, and helping me decide what I'm going to do with those days!

Hannah is waiting for me to get off this silly computer so we can enjoy our time together. I'll be back, and hopefully is won't be as long as last time!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Well... yet again I am lagging in my blogging. Maybe I'll get it right someday. Right now I am watching the beloved, cheesy, dangerous movie High School Musical 3. Let me set the record straight: I very much dislike HSM. It is way too popular for it's own good(as well as the Jonas Bros, but thats a whole different post), and the cheesiest in the nation, but I have to admit the romantic parts make me giddy. It is so incredibly bad for my little heart, but an occasional one won't hurt, right?  

Today I had an episode that was quite odd. I was in the shower(sorry for the visual) and fainted/blacked out twice. I seriously thought I was going to die... pretty scary. My poor mother was so concerned, and once we got to the doctor, we discovered that I am anemic. I also have this thing(I forgot what it's called) where my blood pressure is lower when I stand up rather than sit or lay down. That's no huge deal, but I just have to watch it closely. I am now taking iron, and hopefully that will fix it, but I need to keep an eye out. The doctor is having me get an EKG and a lung x-ray or something, just to make sure all is well. I am SO thankful to the Lord today for taking care of me when all this happened! I could have easily bumped my head on something and seriously gotten hurt! My God is incredible and my Savior!

I am off to Dive/Live Love with the high school group at church. It is always incredible every year, and I'll tell you all about it. For now, I need to get in the car! Pray for all of us!

Friday, February 13, 2009

For No Reason At All...

Here I am again! My theory on blogging is that if, at first, I blog every day(or close to it), then I'll get in the hang of it, and eventually get to where I am blogging in the normal amount range, but not ridiculously too much or too little. Don't worry, this blogging every day thing won't last long, but it will help me realize that it is an option of something for me to do. While I'm at it, why don't I write(or type... whatever) what my goal is for this silly thing. I'm not really in it for the social atkmosphere as much as I am for the writing. I honestly don't care that much about having "followers" or anyone who reads this. I just want to talk to myself(I know.. I'm a weirdo) and just talk about random stuff that most people just honestly don't care to hear about. :-D I could seriously talk all day long, but I'll spare all my friends and family when it's just rambling, and just type here. I also just want to write my poems, songs, and stories in here. My goal is to put prayers and such in here so that way I can look back at it and just see what my God has done! I know that he answers prayers, but sometimes it takes so long that my easily sidetracked brain can't handle it. Haha. Just to let everyone(ha! well... let myself know) that I'm not going to put anything on here that I wouldn't want other people to see. By writing all that stuff above, I'm not trying to drive you away, I promise! I'm just not going to be obsessed about it, and if I have followers and friends than great, but I'm not gonna flip out over it either way.

Well... here goes my day. I did absolutely no homework today! Fun, but now I get to catch it all up next week. Ugh. Today my youngest sis and little bro had a homeschool science class at the Science Museum, and my mom was signed up as a chaperone. I decided to tag along and go see Body Worlds 2! When the first one came I really wanted to see it, but since my mom wasn't a big fan of seeing real people I didn't get to go. It was really good, and I'm glad I went, especially since I got to get in for $7.50 instead of the freaking $21 normal ticket price! At times I was a little sick to my stomach thinking that those things are real people, but all in all I was fascinated by God's handiwork! What an amazing masterpiece we are! I am literally in awe. Later after a couple things I was supposed to do were cancelled, I decided to take Michael out for a mini "together day" and get ice cream. Together days are our special thing, but I'll write about them another time. Well, we went to get ice cream at TCBY, then headed to the park to eat our ice cream and talk for a little bit. I love those times with him! That is all that is exciting (or not so exciting) about my day. Right now I am babysitting(which you will see I do quite often), and the kiddos are all in bed. Oddly enough, the parents I'm babysitting for went to go see Body Worlds tonight. I guess I'm off. I'm getting tired, and I think the parents will be home pretty soon so it will be my bedtime! :-D

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

No... I Didn't Fall Off the Face of This Earth

Forgive me! I actually thought that when I started this blog, I would actually use it! You seriously have no idea how often I think of things to write in this lovely blog of mine. I think of things at least once a day. Its actually quite ridiculous how often I think of things and yet, somehow, I NEVER post! I will do better, I promise! I'm quite sure the reason for lack of blogging is because it is not something I ever got the hang of, and not something that was truly a "part of my schedule". I am taking a facebook fast for a week just to get away from it all... Goodness gracious, that place is ADDICTING!

Right now, I'm listening to a song called While I'm Waiting, by John Waller. It is insane how much I love this song, but it is SO true to my life right now! My little heart literally cringes in longing and yearning for the Lord when I hear the words! Here's the lyrics so you can see what I'm talking about!

I'm waiting
I'm waiting on You, Lord
And I am hopeful
I'm waiting on You, Lord
Though it is painful
But patiently, I will wait

I will move ahead, bold and confident
Taking every step in obedience

While I'm waiting
I will serve You
While I'm waiting
I will worship
While I'm waiting
I will not faint
I'll be running the race 
Even while I wait

I'm waiting
I'm waiting on You, Lord
And I am peaceful
I'm waiting on You, Lord
 Though it's not easy
But faithfully, I will wait
Yes, I will wait

I will move ahead, bold and confident
Taking every step in obedience

I will serve You while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting
I will serve You while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting
I will serve you while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting on You, Lord

If you heard it, you would probably recognize it from Fireproof. That movie in incredible and truly a favorite of mine, but thats a whole different post! Back to the song, I just love that it is a reminder that when my life seems like nothing is progressing, my sin is unfailing and I can't seem to control it, I see my loved ones sin and I just seem them falling deeper and deeper into what I know is wrong, I can just serve my God the best way I know how and worship Him like the mighty, saving, merciful, portion of mine that He is! I could lie flat on my face in tears when I hear this song. Life is HARD, but my Father is here with me, and I say that with the biggest, sweet, thankful smile on my face! When I feel like everything in the world is crashing down on me like it never ceases to do, I can know that I will move ahead, bold and confident, and obey because of the love I have for Jesus. 

It seems like when I wrote the first post to this blog, I was a baby! I guess it's not like I have really grown that much or gotten much older since my first post, but my tiny heart is exploding with love, and I don't know what to do! God has revealed himself to me, and I can not help but ball my eyes out in thinking of his mercy to me! I am so broken and frail, but my delightful, amazing, wonderful, beautiful Jesus has made me complete and I can't help but spend all the time I can with Him! This stuff that I'm talking about even makes me get lazy in doing my homework! I want to spend SO much time in the Word and in prayer to my Jesus, that I want to ignore my schooling! Then I realize that, in fact, God would want me to do the job he has given me for this time, and I cave in and go get it done. This stuff that I'm talking about drives me love others. This stuff is what makes me get up in the morning instead of drowning in self-pity. This stuff is what gets me out of my selfishness and sin. This stuff is what is inspiring me to go half-way across the world after high school and serve Jesus for a year of my life in another country! 

Yes, my Jesus has asked me to go across the ocean to serve Him! While I don't know where I will be going, I know it will be an incredible year (or two or three! Who knows?). I am not scared in the least bit, because I know God will take care of me. I have no desire to fret because of the difference of living in a brand-spanking new culture, with a language I might(very likely!) not know! I've even thought of possibly having to eat bugs and seafood(ew!), and I am completely fine with it! Even, in the worst of circumstances, life is hard and I end up surrendering my life for the sake of Christ, I am fully rested because I know I will go straight to being with the High King of Heaven. I already realize that year will be a HARD one emotionally and spiritually, but I'm ready for it because I know that I will get to know My Portion even more! I am thrilled! That is what this stuff does to me! Would I ever, ever want to go to another freaking country without Jesus? NO! This is what God has laid on my heart, to serve and love these people, whoever they may be, and I am able and willing. Lord, send me! I have been memorizing a verse a month, and for the month of January, I decided to memorize Genesis 12:1-2 because I want my name to be there as a replacement for Abram's. 

The Lord had said to Abram(or Loribeth :-D), "Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you.

"I will make you into a great nation
and I will bless you;
I will make your name great,
and you will be a blessing."

Abram was so willing to just up and leave his precious hom for the God's glory, and thats exactly how I want to be! I have come to realize that the key reason the Lord blesses my sinful self is so I can bless others! I can show others the love my of my Christ by blessing them! That is so profound to me.

I think that shall be it for tonight. Maybe this time I will actually post somewhat consistently. I hope this blog world is a place of second chances! :-) I am in desperate need of them about every minute or so.
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