Tuesday, August 31, 2010

There she goes again

Tomorrow my little sister begins her junior year of college

My how time flies.

[She would most definitely disagree with that statement]

I'm so very proud of her... her character and her personality and her everything! And of course, the academic stuff. :) She's my hero. I did the nursing school thing... she's doing the kinesiology/sports medicine/pre-med/veterinary thing. She's a bit more hard core. I'm pretty sure :). 

Carly, my prayer for you is that this year is your best yet. For friendships and familiar faces and memories and success and encouragement and peace. I love you more than you know. You are honestly my hero. And you make me laugh.

Fun summer memory:

She came to visit me last month while I was busy finishing school and we had a few Murrieta adventures - which is the only way we do it :)

Chinese dinner at...who knows where...some place my phone said was good...and it was!

An hour's drive to find a cute coffee shop... success!

I wish I could say one of these was Carly's. 
But I can't.

But we'll just ignore that.

And our most recent adventure...

moving her back to school!
she was singing the right words. i was making up the words. as you can see.

I love you Carly! Rock it girl! You GOT this!! I'm cheering from the stands...loud :)

Monday, August 30, 2010

So ... yeah

I want to write some creative cute blog. But my creativity is lacking. And truly, my thoughts are a bunch of randomness. So, that's what this is. A semi-lazy plight of randomness that is lacking in appropriate links and photos. Alright. You were warned.

Today I started a four day review for the NCLEX-RN. I think it's gonna help. I hope it helps. It might have been unnecessary. But I would totally be rather safe than sorry. [and if I don't pass, well, I'll just pretend I didn't say that so confidently]. I get about half of the questions, at least, wrong. So we'll see. I'm optimistic though. I'm not worrying. Because honestly, we're called not to worry!

"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?"
Matthew 6:25-27

I got to see my dear friend Ali tonight. And her beautiful little apartment blocks from the beach. She gave me the tour of her little town and it made me want to live there. Not even in Encinitas. But somewhere with a cute downtown, with little restaurants, and shopping centers that don't take 20 minutes to get to. With fun little coffee shops (sometimes I need something besides Starbucks!!). I'm happy for her. And I got home, and J and I played around with the idea of moving north. Not immediately. Since we can't really afford it. But sometime in the semi-near future. Just a thought. I love that my husband will play around with crazy ideas with me.

Speaking of my husband, poor guy got a migraine today. Miraculously, he fell asleep and woke up and the worst was over. I felt so bad for him. And I thought of my poor Katie who has had more migraines than I can count since I've known her. And she is such a trooper. Love you K. You are a fighter.

My sister went back to college today. Well, yesterday we moved her back in. But she slept at home last night and headed up tonight. She starts her junior year on Wednesday. You can do it C! Two down, two to go! (one step at a time). She is so awesome. I rode with her, and we rocked out to the most random music. I sing louder with her than with anyone. It's the best. And she even humored me while I taught her about what was on my flashcards. And she knew some stuff! She taught me! SV times HR = CO. Thank you C. I'm praying for the best year ever for you.

I'm a blessed girl. I have the best family. Both in my own home, and outside of our little abode. And friends. Gosh I love my girl friends. And pups. Oh, they fit in the family category. Well, they make me laugh, like, all the time, so they get an honorable mention. And my Savior. I'm in love with Your Word right now, God! Thank you for revealing yourself in a whole new way. :)

So, that might be enough randomness for today. So... yeah.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Sliver in the sky

this sky makes me happy
at peace
and joyful.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Neighborly love

Yesterday, I looked out my window to find this scene.

My former marine neighbor was teaching my other neighbor how to fight.
Or something like that.

I decided not to ask.
I just took a picture instead.

Because really, when you sword fight on the common grass,
you have to assume people may stop to watch.

Ah, I love neighbors.
The joys of condo living.
No really. I do. :)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Day of many colors

Today I am feeling...

encouraged by my Bible study girls
overwhelmed at the thought of taking (and passing) the NCLEX in 15 days
inspired by my husband's biblical wisdom, exercise regimen, and love for me
sneaky that i saw my mom and sis on the freeway on my way home tonight
excited to see my mom tomorrow
nervous about being a real live nurse (and the whole finding-a-job thing)
peaceful that the Lord has taken care of me this far and will continue to do so
desire to read about God's love for His people in the Old Testament
lucky to have gotten to chat with my step dad tonight 
amazed by the beauty of a sunset and the intricacy of a single tree
proud of my nursing friends who passed the boards and are now RNs
[congrats Mahea, Jennie, Emily, Lindsey, Brian, Amber, and Katelyn!]
sore from some good but hard workouts this week
tired from reading all-I-learned-in-nursing-school: the-compact-version
anxious (in a good way) to see Ali and her new home on Sunday
thankful for the apple genius man that fixed my computer today for free
blessed to be a child of God Almighty

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The beginnings of 24

A few weeks ago, I turned 24. Whoo hoo! I'm at my prime. 
The year I've been dreaming of since I was little. :)

It was a special few days of fun... not all birthday related. 
Which was totally fun. :)

Coffee with the ladies
(I only made them take this photo 4 times to get it right ;)

My cousin Joel's 13th birthday party
(so it isn't totally all birthday related... but timing-wise, it worked out)

Grandma and Uncle Mike

Mom and me

My actual birthday consisted of:

shopping with my husband...
birthday money to get cute shoes and fun school supplies
(because I of course have to buy new school supplies in August, even if I'm not going back to school... they are "NCLEX-prep supplies" and they are actually quite helpful!)

 Fuddruckers with the family

 two delicious desserts...
fruit pizza courtesy of my mom - mmm!
and my favorite - mud pie courtesy of my J - very creative 2-4, bun!

some lovely gifts
(these are a few select photos... but I was so lucky this year!!)

Yay... my 2nd Anthro dress!!!

and a new Bible from my sweetheart.

Some super sweet cards and gifts via the mail.
I love mail!! Thank you family!

And a fun dessert with my dear friend and her boyfriend.
I love you A. Thank you for being my friend. You are really the best.

We had so much fun with you, Joe and Ali!

I am so incredibly blessed.

24 is off to a great start!

Manaja, heat!

you are way too hot for my liking.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Luigi's New Home

This summer, we upgraded Luigi to a bigger, prettier, and funner cage. 

I think he likes it!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Now meets forever

This week I had the honor of celebrating the life of Jaimee Renfrow at our alma mater (the first one) with my friend.

And about 300 other people. Or 500. I'm really not good at estimating numbers. But a lot. 

The chapel was almost full. Of friends. Faculty. Family. 
People who were impacted by Jaimee, in however great or small of a way. 

Never have I better understood the idea of joy in mourning.

"Then shall the young women rejoice in the dance,
   and the young men and the old shall be merry.
I will turn their mourning into joy;
   I will comfort them, and give them gladness for sorrow."
Jeremiah 31:13

There is something amazing about knowing Jaimee is with Jesus right now. 
Jaimee has seen God's face
What will it be like to come face to face with the Creator of the Universe? 
The thought overwhelms me.

"Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face
Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known."
1 Corinthians 13:12

I saw reflections of His glory at Point Loma on Wednesday. 
In the faces of those in the chapel. 
In the words of Rony, and Jaimee's grandpa. 
In the beauty of the university I had the privilege of being a part of for 3.5 years.

In the ocean. 

In the sunset. In the clouds.

God, thank you for glimpses of your glory, and beauty, and grace here on this Earth. 
I can't wait to be in the presence of your full glory, and beauty, and grace. 

Friday, August 20, 2010

A nickel here, a quarter there

Yesterday, my husband sent me this amazing article that discusses the idea that money can buy a bit of happiness. Read it. It's a great one.

I had an entire page written about my thoughts on money and experiences and ya-di-yah... but I feel it is wiser and more effective to let this article speak for itself without [quite] so much of my commentary.

I can say that most of the principles articulated are true and worthwhile. And the times we have tried them, it has been so worth it.

A few of Sierra's quotes:

"She and her husband swapped their cars (and car payments) for bicycles."

"It’s okay to think small. Spending on several small treats — like a massage, a good book, or dinner at your favorite restaurant — will bring you more happiness than one big-ticket item like a sports car."

"What really makes people happy is connection. When we’re engaged in a leisure activity, we’re more likely to be socializing with others, forming and strengthening our relationships. It’s these strong relationships ... that bring us lasting joy throughout our lives." 

"Frugal happiness seekers can use these principles to their advantage."

"Splurging on a series of small indulgences is worth more happiness than one large splurge."

"We can get more happiness out of large purchases by saving for them in advance, rather than buying them on credit ... It’s not simply that being debt-free is a happy way to be; you’ll also get pleasure from anticipating the purchase while you’re saving up for it. Once you have your new couch or dream vacation, you’ll enjoy it more knowing it’s the fruit of your hard work as a saver."

We're definitely still learning.
It's a work in progress.
And I like that.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Italian side of me

So, I'm Italian.
Well, 25% Italian. 
But I'm proud of that 25%.
I love everything that has to do with Italy.
And I love my Italian family. 
All 75 of them :)

I don't get to see them very often, so they haven't really made an appearance here on the blog yet. But I wanted to introduce you.

A few months ago, Carly, J and I went to my cousin's wedding. The night before the wedding, we had dinner with my dad. So we got to spend some time with the Italian side of me.

Allow me to make some familial introductions to the 'bloggy blog' (gosh I so dislike that term, but it will do for now until I come up with something better).

My dad and stepmom, Patti
they live in colorado

My cousin, Stephen, and his beautiful bride, Alisa

My beautiful cousin, Mattison

And Mattie's little sissy, Abigail, and Aunt Nancy (these are her girls).
they did this whole thing where they moved to colorado also.
we dislike that they are far away. but it's pretty there. :)

Our "mini-me"s. 
Mattie is the spitting image of me. And Abbie is the spitting image of Carly.
The girls know it too. And they like it (well, Mattie does... but that is characteristic of her perfect personality... just teasing sis). We like it even more :)

My Grammie. 
I so wish I could spend more time with her. 
She lives in Colorado too. In the most beautiful cabin.

My Aunt Patti (she lives in Colorado too, darn it)
and some dancing, Italian-style ;)

Stephen and my Aunt Joni

my Grammie and Poppa.
they love each other so much. i love that.

Grammie, Poppa, Aunt Marilyn and Uncle Jack.
Aunt Marilyn is Grammie's sister.

Our cousin and Steve's sister, Marie
she is my closest-in-age cousin. she was my play buddy when we were little.

Marie, Carly, Aunt Nancy, and me - doing a little dancing

Dad's toast

the groom/our cousin, Stephen

These are a few of those I call 'family.' 
I love each of them so so much.