Monthly Archives: January 2013

My Cup Runs Over

It’s the little things that really seem to make life matter. A light dusting of snow falling the day before my birthday, finding a hidden koala bear while geocaching with friends, making it safely through St Louis traffic. That’s when I feel closest to God. I’m not going to lie. I doubt more than I should. I often assume the worst is bound to happen and am usually shocked when everything works out just fine. I’m the queen of wondering what if I get lost, what if I got the time wrong, what if I wrote down the wrong number? Wasted energy on phantom troubles, and yet God still sees me through.

Maybe it’s silly but being a January baby I’ve always felt that having snow on my birthday is like getting a birthday present from God. This year I’d already rationalized that it was too warm for snow talking myself out of getting my hopes up… and then it snowed. A light, soft snow just enough to cover the ground and then it melted away.

I hadn’t expected much for my birthday this year. I was in the processes of packing for a move and just didn’t have the energy or inspiration to plan anything, but God took care of that too. To start out the week my friend Katie threw me a party complete with roses, cupcakes, and people I love. On Monday, my brothers took me to a movie and while the movie I was dying to see ending up being a huge disappointment, it felt good knowing that my brothers loved me enough to sit through a movie they both hated. We laughed about it as soon as the credits started to roll.

Tuesday included a goodbye/birthday celebration with two amazing friends, and as we ate at Chick-fil-a, took pictures at my friend’s photography studio, and went goecaching we asked each other why we waited until I was leaving to all hangout together. The night ended perfectly when we stopped at Starbucks and the barista suggest Chai as the drink of choice for such a chilly night. My favorite drink, of course, but my friends tried it as well which made my heart happy.

On Wednesday (my actual birthday) I celebrated with my family with a French silk pie and my favorite dish beef subgum. Saturday ended out the week. Packing was stressful, but I finally fit my life into the back of my Nissan Stanza Wagon and headed to St Louis where my friends took me out to Friday’s for a birthday supper. I felt so full, so blessed, so loved. I can’t get over how many incredible people I have in my life which, after surviving a very hard year, feels so good.

Today was another day of celebration. After being in St Louis for less than two weeks God provided an amazing job for me as a nanny, and my plans to go to Kenya at the end of May have been finalized! (More on that to come) With everything falling into place I almost feel like I’m walking in a dream. God has been so good to me providing just when I was tempted to give up and surrounding me with some of the most amazing people. To celebrate my friend Tara and her husband Zach and I headed to the St Louis loop to enjoy dinner at Cheese-ology and then had rootbeer floats at Fitz’s.

As Psalms 73:28 says, “The nearness of God is my good; I have made the Lord God my refuge, that I may tell of all your works.” As summed up by the picture below. My cup truly runs over.

My cup runs over- rootbeer floats at Fitz's

My cup runs over- rootbeer floats at Fitz’s

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To Butterflies, 2013, and New Beginnings

I could write a fluffy post about how wonderful life was in 2012, but if I’m honest I would have to say that it has been one of the hardest years of my life. I had a stressful, time consuming job (note to self, if your life goal is to travel and help people around the world do not agree to run a small town newspaper) see Pageants, Parades, and Tractor Pulls. I lost a very dear friend to a brain aneurism see When Words Aren’t Enough and For Alice followed by my grandpa getting very sick (he’s doing much better now). I lived in an unfinished apartment with limited electricity and no running water see Bucket Head, Camping Without the Stars, and Weaving Through the Chaos (this situation has since improved). I had to live on a very tight income, was haunted by the general feeling of being stuck, and –to top it all off—four days before Christmas my grandparents got into a car accident see When Your Forgettery Works Better Than Your Memory and Walk With Me (Grandpa is now settled in an assisted living facility and Grandma is still in ICU).

At times, I felt like I was living the life other people felt I should live and not living the life I really wanted to live. I’ve cried a lot, dealt with depression, and at times felt like life was a waste, but as the year has finally come to an end I am thankful that many circumstances have changed and am ready for a fresh new start.

But, in spite of all the crazy, I was thinking the other day that I’ve actually gotten to do some pretty cool things this year including:

Shooting a wedding with the help of my amazing friend Treena

I Do

Running three 5Ks with my good friend Chelsie

Running Buddies

Seeing Lindsey Stirling in concert (amazing)

Love this girl

Taking a birthday trip with two incredible friends to San Francisco

Best 25th Birthday Ever

Flying to Atlanta to visit another incredible friend

Hanging with Lindsey

Attempting windowsill gardening with varying degrees of success

Trial and Error Gardening

Getting to write for the amazing magazine Rejoice Always

Rejoice Always

Spending time with my little buddy Hailey

Hailey

And I got my passport renewed, so who knows what is next.

I’m looking forward to 2013 even though I have no idea what it is going to bring. I decided to close the newspaper at the end of the year and plan on moving to St Louis. My goal is to work, save up money and move to Kenya sometime in May to hopefully work in an orphanage or with street kids. There are a lot of unknowns and what ifs, but I feel at peace and am hopeful about the future. The last artist I interviewed for the paper carved beautiful gourds and gave me one of her pieces as a good bye present a butterfly she said the symbol of new beginnings.

New Beginnings

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Filed under Contemplations, Photography, Travel