May 31, 2013

c i n c o

I have compiled a list of five things that you probably didn't know about me. Chances are that you actually don't really care about them, but that's why I made a list of only five instead of the twenty five I've seen on other blogs. Actually, I take that back. If you're reading my blog, you probably wouldn't hate to read five random facts about moi. I'm sort of interesting, sometimes.
1. I met former president George W. Bush.... twice.
If you're like the internet (yes, if you are like the internet) then you are probably screaming "PICS OR IT DIDN'T HAPPEN." You're in luck. I have a picture. You're welcome. First things first, let me tell you the story. My older sister used to be a partner in a fundraising company. I got to meet a lot of cool people by volunteering at these events or just tagging along like the presh little sister I was. It doesn't matter what political party you belong to, meeting the POTUS (How West Wing of me!) while he's in office is pretty dang cool. You know what's not pretty dang cool? Not knowing to do with your hands, a la Ricky Bobby, and ending up with this: 

2. My bachelor's degree is in Criminal Justice.
I took an intro class my freshman year because I needed a random credit and I fell in love. I was originally a communications major because I wanted to work in the magazine industry. What did I think my life was? 13 Going on 30? I quickly dropped comm, picked up criminal justice, and never looked back. Though I might never actually do anything in that field, it's still, BY FAR, my favorite thing I've ever studied. I was in the first graduating class of CJ majors at my university and I was the first girl. I'll milk that one for all it's worth. I would be a great crime solver and I stinkin' love justice, so it's perfect. Move on over Liv, there's a new SVU detective in town (except I would never, ever work SVU). 

3. I visited Korea in 5th grade.
I get it, Korea is sort of a random country for some people, but when I moved there, it wasn't the first time I had visited. My aunt's husband was a fancy shmancy business man and was sent over to Seoul with his family to plant a branch for his company. My aunt decided to fly me over for my spring break in fifth grade. It was so interesting to revisit some of the same places that we traveled when I moved there in 2011. Good thing I still don't look like a twelve year old boy.

4. I grew up attending/working at a camp in the mountains. 
People generally assume that I'm "indoorsy." It makes me laugh because I grew up spending a portion of my summers at a camp, but not a "hip" camp, a very old fashioned camp. I grew up doing archery, creek walking, identifying constellations, and hiking. In fact, I'm a certified archery instructor. This camp is so special to me. I started attending when I was 8 years old and had my last summer when I was 19. When I was fifteen, I went through a two year long leadership program that trained me to lead activities (I often led the outdoor adventure class) & be a counselor. This camp is actually how I met Kasey. One of my best friends in the whole entire world, Elyse, is someone that I met at camp. I was a counselor, she was on kitchen staff. We were basically a mountainous Romeo & Juliet (just not the whole in love thing). You still can't get over the fact that I'm a certified archery instructor, can ya? I'm so Katniss. 

5. I competed a national improv competition.
There's not really much I can say about this. I have a background in theater, and by that, I mean that I did children's theater and school plays. I loved being on stage and sort of realized that I was witty in high school. I took a couple of improv classes and then was asked to be on a team that would compete with other high school aged improv teams at a national competition. My team didn't win, but I was named MVP of my team. I have a trophy. Don't h8 me cuz u 8nt me.

So there you have it... five things you probably didn't know about me. What's something random that most people don't know about you? 

May 16, 2013

the time i survived a worst case scenario

I'm sort of the queen of "what if" situations. 
"What would you do if I just passed out and hit my head and blood was all over the ground?' 
(I seriously said this one today as I was leaving lunch with a friend)
For some reason, I like to look at situations and think of something horrible to test my reaction. I feel so dysfunctional as I'm typing this. This is probably most definitely a result of watching too many suspense/crime shows. My roommate from college always calls me out on it when I do it because I rarely even realize that it's happening. It's a part of who I am though, it's my spiritual gift. 

I've never really lived one of these "worst case scenarios" until last week. Not only did I live a WCS (worst case scenario- duhhhh), but I survived it. I Braveheart. 

I decided recently that I'm going to start being healthier. I'm going to put whole foods in my body and exercise. There's not a goal associated with this, just a desire to be healthier. I ate tacos for lunch today though so I'm obviously off to a very slow start. Forget that, taco's are like manna from Heaven. I shouldn't have to apologize for street tacos.

I digress. 

In my effort to be healthy, I decided that I would start taking advantage of the beautiful greenbelt with a very convenient path perfect for running, jogging, walking, or the very weird mix of all three that make me look like I'm dying. The other night, after eating some deliciously healthy dinner like quinoa or whatever, I decided to go on a little run/jog/walk/die. I took off towards the greenbelt (which is a little over a mile from my house) and was feeling really great as I was movin' and groovin' to Today's Hits Pandora station. I get to the greenbelt and take off to the left where I am feeling basically like a fitness model because I know that I'm looking oh so fly and healthy. 

I get about a quarter mile down the greenbelt when it hits me.

I have to go to the bathroom.

This wasn't a "find some bushes and sprinkle a quick tinkle" type of trip. This was an "I ate quinoa for dinner and too many healthy things and what is happening to my body right now" type of bathroom trip. Are you picking up what I'm putting down? Don't make me say it. It's too embarrassing. I realized that I needed to turn around and go home because if not, I was going to get to the point where I was going to use the nature potty but the greenbelt is lined with houses so basically I had no choice but to high tail it home. I turn around and am using coping mechanisms (future counselor, heyo!) and distractions to take my mind off of the impending doom that is my bowel situation. Is this too much information for a blog? Whatever. We're all friends here, right? 

I start to panic and get the cold sweats. I know what's happening. I need a bathroom. There's basically no place where I can go to the restroom aside from my home. There's a Jack in the Box down the road but it's over a mile away and I knew I couldn't run for fear of agitating the beast inside of me and expediting the inevitable. I start walking home, with purpose. Sign me up for the Olympics because I'm a speed walking queen. I get about half a mile down when it hits me. I've got five minutes until show time. That's when I realize that I have found myself a way out of this worst case scenario. My best friend and her husband live in an development off the road I was run/jog/walk/dying along and I decided that getting to her house was the best option. I jetted as fast as my squatty legs would take me and then got lost in her subdivision. I found my way to her house, knocked ferociously, and felt a wave of relief (not that much relief you sickos) wash over me when she answered the door. I quickly said "I'M HAVING A WORST CASE SCENARIO I HAVE TO USE YOUR BATHROOM I'LL EXPLAIN LATER" and ran faster than Usain Bolt to her bathroom.

I made it. I did not have an accident and my friend (who happened to be the college roommate I mentioned earlier) laughed so hard that I thought she was going to have an accident herself!

There are so many morals to this story: 1. Always play the WCS game because one day you'll live it, 2. Don't run/jog/walk or you will DIE, 3. Never eat quinoa, and 4. Being healthy will cause you to almost soil yourself- so avoid it at all costs. 

May 14, 2013

why i sometimes hate blogging

I have to be honest: sometimes I hate the blogging world. I almost feel like I'm pulled back into high school sometimes with it and I hate how it does that to me. I don't want to bash a really lovely medium, because I truly believe that there is so much good within the blogging world. Let me just explain.
I started blogging when I was in high school because I had a lot of feelings. I've always been expressive and blogs seemed like a natural transition from a journal (I was a fool!), so I did what any normal, overemotional teenager did and made a livejournal account. I proceeded to write for several years under different names there and enjoyed that medium.

When I moved to Korea, my blog became a very important way of communicating stories and pictures with family and friends. It was a great way to write down silly stories or explain about the place I was living in. I still love rereading those entries because they are just so special.
My dear bloggy friend Fran wrote a really lovely post earlier this year about blogging. It really hit home for me. If you haven't already read it, go and pour over her words- you won't regret it. She's such a great writer and this post is one straight from her heart.

I started this particular blog to chronicle life post Korea with a new job and in a new/old state. I never, ever set out to be a "blogger" nor did I ever want to write about things that didn't actually interest me just for the sake of gaining readership. I post what I want, when I want, and write in a way that I feel accurately portrays who I am. This is not meant to sound sassy, but if it does, that's probably because I am very sassy and often have trouble containing it. 

My little blog is everything I could want it to be. I love that there are a handful of lovebugs who read my words and reply with their words. It is so special and I would rather have this lovely little corner than a blog with a ton of readers who I don't know or feel connected to. 
It's weird to me that anyone would want to read what I say, but I'm glad there are some who do and glad that I've gotten to make some great connections on here.

That said, I absolutely can not and will not write things that I don't entirely believe in.  It makes me sad to see some people who have gotten swept up in the "glamour" of attaining followers and forgotten why they loved writing in the first place. I am writing for me, and if you like that, stick around, if you don't- your loss, right? 

May 1, 2013

book review: the good and beautiful god

One of my resolutions for this year was to read more, specifically it was to read/finish twenty five books. Since that post, I've finished three books (I have a loooong way to go), but one I just recently finished warranted a book review. 

I read "The Good and Beautiful God" by James Bryan Smith with the student development team at the university I work for. One thing that I really loved this book is that it was a theology book but was organized into nine very easy to understand chapters. There was no theological jargon that left me wondering what the heck I was reading; Smith put everything in terms that even the babiest of believers could understand. 

I appreciate that, even as someone who has studied theology and been a believer since childhood. I think sometimes we complicate things way too much and we need to get back to the basics, or the b6 as we say in bingo. I love that the tagline of the book was "falling in love with the God Jesus knows." 

Favorite Passages:

"If I were wise, I would spend time each day thanking God for the 'vast treasure' he has given me. I could start, but I could never stop."

"The larger narrative from the biblical story is a massive tapestry of grace and generosity."

"If we think of God as a vague and impersonal force in the universe, we will probably have a vague and impersonal relationship with this god."

One thing that I really liked about the book was that it had "soul trainings" at the end of every chapter. For example, in the chapter about God being trustworthy, the soul training asks you to list blessings, regardless of how big or how little. Then it prompts you to praise God for the abundant list of blessings and reflect upon God's goodness. 

There were some chapters that I didn't enjoy as much as others, but overall, I found this to be a good read. If you decide to read it, I recommend reading it in a community setting, like read it as a part of a group so that you can get together and discuss the book as well as the soul trainings. I found that reading it together with others was much more fruitful than if I would have just read it on my own. There's also a small group discussion guide in the back of the book which provides extra topics of conversation. 

This book might not rock your world or challenge any of your beliefs, but I do think that it will give you some insight onto the wonder and majesty of God. The soul trainings will provide discipline in spending time thanking God and studying his character. For those of us who have been in the church a while, this book provides a way to step back and re-fall in love with our good and beautiful God.

(See what I did there? Clever girl.)

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