Wednesday, October 26, 2011

getting strength.

i've been trying to gain my strength back as a runner. last week i ran a 5-er and this week will be the big 7. it's always been a rough one for me, but seeing the weather report for the weekend made me excited for  the long haul around auburn.

gaining strength this week has come in other facets of my life this week. strength in school ( this was supposed to be an "easy" week... yeh right), strength for others, strength within my heart.

in third grade i met a girl who changed my life. her silly awkward love for others was captivating and i wanted in. our friendship grew over years of sleepovers, bike rides, prank phone calls, and limited too. we got sun burnt on the beach and pruned in the lake, we grew in our faith together and challenged each other to achieve more. although she moved schools, we stayed close.

now, 13 years later ( holy cow) we are still close. i know, no matter what distance or time has separated us, i can count on her. and she can count on me.

today i made a trip to montgomery to be with her. her mother is dying and i needed to be there. yet i had to gain new strength; strength i had never needed before. and i had to do it fast. yet i learned today, that if you have love, you have strength. and Jesus gave me strength today. strength i didn't know i had...

this past weekend we spent some time in new orleans. it was a nice time to spend with the girls and we enjoyed taking advantage of everything the city had to offer. this was the first thing we did when we arrived... walk to cafe du monde and eat. i could only eat one... they are SO SWEET. but unreal. there as only a little day light to work with, but i did get some good photos of new orleans before the craziness came out. either way... it was a trip full of memories. and h i l a r i o u s stories ( tiger bait).

i obviously enjoyed the architecture in new orleans. i could have stayed all day just taking pictures... but i didn't want to get lost/stolen/mugged on bourbon street. so i stayed with the others and got what i could...

and the lsu fans the next day weren't too bad... but i prefer auburn any day.

soo for WONDERFUL WEDNESDAY i actually did a tasty tuesday!! i think i outdid myself personally... now it may not be the most beautiful thing ((i gave the pretty ones away))... but believe me it wouldn't matter...

this is a Peanut Butter Cup Brownie. i found them on pinterest (shocking i know) and made them for someone (mallard ball date YAY) and i had to try one. they are to die for and actually taste like a peanut butter cup. i mean they are not that hard to make (but let's pretend they are).

1. just make your favorite brownies in muffin tins (i used some with paper and some without) and let them cook almost all the way... until the tops are firm but not cooked all the way through. take them out and set them somewhere to cool. the tops should fall in while they cool... however, if they don't, take the back of a spoon and create a little indention.

2. take the pb of your choice (i used kroger creamy... 1/3 of a regular sized jar) and microwave for 40 seconds. 

3. spoon pb into the indention in the brownies just to the top. 

4. while the brownies are still warm, garnish with milk chocolate and semi sweet chocolate chips.

5. let them cool completely before removing them! store in a cool place:)

these little guys will rock your world. its a perfect combo of what you need. try 'em and let me know.

today i was informed that i looked like a "fashionista". never in my life have i been called such. i would like to think i can occasionally style myself and look trendy. mostly, however, i go with what i like. i just thought it was funny. 

and so i am off to sleep. i have had an emotional day, and blog world gives me a creative outlet to invest in. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


it finally feels like F A L L. pulling on sweatpants this morning in order to make my coffee was an exceptional way to wake up. as i drove to nanny, i could see the colors of fall creeping into the trees. leaves are falling as the wind blows. it's perfect. and i love it.

as you know, Adele pulled a ninja move on us an cancelled her concert sunday. sister and i made the trip to ATL anyways and it was quite better then expected. lunch at Houston's (always a crowd pleaser) and conversation on the couch always proves to encourage, motivate and challenge me. not to mention the company was far above any adele concert. we enjoyed laughs, breakfast for dinner, a roach named allen and a 24-hour gas station. needless to say, i am ready to go back to atlanta again.

this weekend auburn exceeded my expectations as well. they beat florida. and it wasn't a heart wrenching event. i was proud of the tigers and enjoyed not going into cardiac arrest at the end of the game. so war eagle to that.

stead ventured to auburn this weekend. i was pleased to see him on the plains, however not so pleased with his choice in colors. typical of a "the other team" fan i guess. kidding... he didn't wear crimson, just florida blue and green. either way, sister and i are going to have to work hard at getting him here. but it is a battle we are willing to take.

monday munchies didn't happen... neither did tasty tuesday. so i guess wonderful wednesday will have to suffice. here is something i found that i think is wonderful. we have two categories... food (shocking i know) and event in the news.

1. food. feast your little eyes on these two things...

these are Cheesy Lasagna Rolls with Spinach and Ricotta and they look SO GOOD. they are beautifully put together too. honestly, the recipe doesn't sound too difficult either. it's a new way to spice up an old favorite.

and now this... i realized i must really like this because i pinned it twice on Pinterest....

i mean how cute is that. it's individual, which makes everyone feel special. AND you can customize for each person if you wanted, which is something i love. i really want do these for something... so give me something to do them for!

2. news...

Parents Urged Again to Limit TV for Youngest

Daniel Lai/Aurora Photos
Watching TV while a parent is busy: Video screen time has no educational benefits for young children, a report says.

Found this article in the NY Times today... i agree with this. and, as you are well aware, i do not watch tv anyways... so yea. i thought this was interesting. not really "wonderful" but you get the idea...


looking forward to some new pictures from this weekend. NOLA and Baton Rouge could be a promising event for my nikon and me.

maybe i'll be brave enough to take the nikon to the game... we'll see.

until then....

a verse from my devotion today/last night

And he sat down and called the twelve. And he said to them, "If anyone would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all." Mark 9:35

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


Source: None via Melanie on Pinterest

for the first time in my life, i actually have a glimpse into what it means to be blind; to actually live in darkness.

sunday morning i woke up with red, bloodshot, weeping eyes. i thought i was having a reaction to my contacts. but they weren't getting better, unlike the times in the past. sunday, i was so sensitive to light, i went to bed at 7:45. no joke. i haven't been to bed that early since i was 7.

monday, after a day of nannying, kimmy called the med clinic, took me, and we discovered i had 3 abrasions on the upper third of my left eye.

eww. it hurt as much as you can imagine. they gave me drops, but i went to bed by 8 monday night. i felt like an old woman.

but monday and tuesday, i really couldn't stand to me in any light all day. thankfully, it was raining and cloudy all day, allowing me to stay cooped up in my bedroom like a recluse.

i experienced real darkness. 
and of course, the Lord showed me something through it...

there are so many times i grow comfortable in my life here at Auburn. we live here in a little bubble, and forget that there are people who daily struggle and are persecuted for their beliefs in Christ. however, living in the "Bible belt", we don't experience this as much.

i don't know what it's like to live in darkness without the Lord. everyday, i encounter Him. i recognize Him. i spend time with Him. 
i know Him.

but there are so many who don't. and that's what Jesus was reminding me the past two days... don't forget those who live in constant darkness. i need to remember those who suffer to live their lives for the Lord... not grow so comfortable.

it reminds me of africa. of my little ugandan children. i am praying the Lord will give me a heart for where He wants me to go. back to africa... or somewhere else.

i just wanna share the light. 

Saturday, October 8, 2011


this year, my dgroup and i are reading Lady in Waiting. it is exceptional. i would recommend it to any woman. really any demographic applies... younger, older, married, single, divorced. whichever.

i especially love reading it during the time of my life i am in right now.

this past week we read about diligence. about becoming a woman who is diligently pursuing what the Lord has for her in her life. not fantasising about some knight in shining armor who probably is never going to make it to the front door. instead, we must strive for a relationship with the Lord. just as Ephesians 5:16 says, we must make the most of EVERY opportunity the Lord gives us. that includes an opportunity to be single.


i started back the running. went for 2.3 miles thursday morning and it felt really great. today, i plan on running as far as i can. we'll see how that goes...

dad and i are doing the half marathon on Thanksgiving and i HAVE to get back into the swing of things.


in other news.....

i am  upset ....mad...angry... devastated. Adele cancelled her north american tour. i honestly almost cried. she has a hemorrhage in her vocal chord, which i guess is a big deal. she cancelled them all... atlanta, nashville, austin, orlando, miami... all. of. them.

i am sad. but em and i decided to travel to atlanta anyways and enjoy a day with the grandparents and just exploring some atlanta stuff. 

dad is trying to get a refund. but still... every time i hear an adele song, i get sad...


this week has been full of faithfulness; the kind of faithfulness i need to share. this week has been packed with hard stuff. emotional conversations, a nerve wracking interview, cancelled plans, rude behavior, disappointing news... fill in the blank. however, the Lord has filled me with JOY every single morning. joy that i know only comes from him. not happiness, we know that is conditional. this is something i have not experienced. super natural. joy that only comes from God, my Lord and Savior. 

His faithfulness to remind me he is ever present has been beautiful this week. yesterday, i sat with two of my best friends and cried over the LOVE and FAITHFULNESS of the Lord. the way his promises are reviled in His time. a magnificent display of his power, and awesomeness. 

i am constantly blown away by this love. today, i look outside, and all i see is his love. i got coffee with em this morning. and in her eyes, i see his love for me, by giving me a sister like that. 

just needed to share... joy does come in the morning. never forget that. 


i am SUPER excited about tonight. kimmy and i are having a wonderful, fantastic, relaxing saturday at home. we went shopping after my coffee date with em, and i actually bought clothes. i am so cheap. and i actually spent money on two dresses and shoes. 

mom would be so proud of me...

but i am making roasted brussel sprouts tonight and baked balsamic vinegrette chicken. kimmy is making dinner too and we are going to sit around and watch the auburn game and enjoy some qt time together. 

thank you pinterest for inspiring me...

oh and WAR EAGLE. beat ark pleaseeeee

Monday, October 3, 2011


this weekend was wonderful. friday the grands picked me up on their way to montgomery to watch stead. quality time with them is always welcomed. we drove back saturday morning and had coffee at mcdonalds at exit 51. i was wearing tps sweats and chacos. definitely a look to remember.

saturday was spent doing my favorite things. cleaning [seriously, i love cleaning the apt. makes me feel so productive, domestic, and refreshed. not many things allow you to feel this way], watching college football, threw in a little exercise, fall weather, Amsterdam's for dinner, candles and open windows before bed... that is the equation for a good saturday.

although most of these things were done solo, i could not have asked for a better day. [i even did all my homework] sunday was great as well. you can't beat Cornerstone fellowship and worship, studying and two lattes [don't tell mom...] and bed time at 9:30. overall, i deserved points for productivity and usefulness. too bad we took the points system down...

now playing: ben rector- hank.
i do spotify now, which is great, if you do not know what it is, google it. download. and fall in love.
ben rector is one of my playlists. today whilst studying, Hank came on. i restarted it and listened again to the lyrics. it's the sweetest song. he wrote it to his nephew and it touched my heart. i'd love to do something similar for my sibs kids one day...

To a boy who looks just like his mother, who's a sister to her brother, who sings this song to that boy from far away

I am young but you are younger until you speak more words then mumble, You have to lend an ear to everything i say.

So be kind and love your mother and your father, though sometimes they seem to bother come by, Hank, and you'll know. 

There the ones who'll always love you and support you, they prayed for you before you stepped foot into this world. That's one thing that I've learned.

I remember you were walking, in a month I'll hear you talking. There's a million things I'd love to say to you.Though your parents, they are wiser and will be better advisers, maybe hearing these things twice will get them through.

Go and find a girl for whom your love is selfless, someone who makes you helpless, to change the way you feel. But stay away from girls who always look so pretty, who's hearts just aren't fitting for the man in you I see. 

Would you remember that for me?

i just thought it was sweet.

red finger nails.

Source: via Morgan on Pinterest

it's time. october for me means fall... which also means red fingernails. it's a sort of signature of mine that i did not discover until now. i love red nails. right now mine are "valentine" by Revlon. they will be "vixen" in November. don't know why, just glad it is finally red fingernail time.

monday munchies.
today is a little too busy for me to do this, but i am going to start doing one recipe a week on mondays. here is one for you to dream about me making, because two tests today might not be a good combo in the kitchen...

Lasagna Soup
(print recipe)
for the soup:
2 tsp. olive oil
1-1/2 lbs. Italian sausage
3 c. chopped onions
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
2 T. tomato paste
1 28-oz. can fire roasted diced tomatoes
2 bay leaves
6 c. chicken stock
8 oz. mafalda or fusilli pasta
1/2 c. finely chopped fresh basil leaves
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
for the cheesy yum:
8 oz. ricotta
1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp. salt
pinch of freshly ground pepper
2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add sausage, breaking up into bite sized pieces, and brown for about 5 minutes. Add onions and cook until softened, about 6 minutes. Add garlic, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Cook for 1 minute. Add tomato paste and stir well to incorporate. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the tomato paste turns a rusty brown color.
Add diced tomatoes, bay leaves, and chicken stock. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Add uncooked pasta and cook until al dente. Do not over cook or let soup simmer for a long period of time at this point, as the pasta will get mushy. Stir in basil and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
While the pasta is cooking, prepare the cheesy yum. In a small bowl, combine the ricotta, Parmesan, salt, and pepper.
To serve, place a dollop of the cheesy yum in each soup bowl, sprinkle some of the mozzarella on top and ladle the hot soup over the cheese.
Servings:  8

found this last night in the midst of looking at job openings in the atlanta and birmingham areas. why i was looking in October... who knows. but i was, and i found this instead. 

i love when God reminds me of things....


I have been reading eat. pray. love while nannying after i study and such. i saw the movie last year, but i love a good book and this is definitely good.

i discovered my love for a place i have not even been to yet. a place full of mystery and love. and carbs. and beautiful words and even more beautiful landscaping created by masters of architecture and The Master of gardening.

i love italy.

and i want to go. and get lost.

it is one of the journeys i need have to go on. before i am married. i literally want to pack my things, fly over, and get lost.

sometimes, when you're lost somewhere, it is the only way you can ever be found. or find yourself.

i believe there is so much romance [not love romance, but world romance] in italy. relationships with words, foods, buildings, and the people who made it happen.

imagine getting lost in this place.....

Source: via Brooke on Pinterest

until another day...