Tuesday, July 1

Coffee With The Girls

     Today for lunch I took two sweet, beautiful, amazing young women out for some coffee and girl time. I had such a blast and they kept me laughing and laughing the entire time! And the fact that they kept saying, "Bri, you made my week!" actually made my week. :)
     They've been friends since the first grade and will be starting their freshman year of high school together here in a few months. I usually just see them on Wednesday nights at the youth group Jon and I help out at, but I thought it would be fun to have some one on one time and also get to know them on a more relaxed, personal basis. So it was fun to see them "in their element" today and I was really encouraged by their friendship, I guess, because of their easy laughs and how many memories they've made together. They have a lot of "dirt" on each other and love to tease, but you know they can always count on the other one to be there when they need it most.
     Anyway, I've had a desire laid on my heart to reach out and befriend these two lovelies. I just remember what it was like for me going into high school and how life can change so drastically within a few short years. I knew I had my mom and sisters to watch my back for me, but I can't really remember anyone else that I looked up to and thought was cool enough for me to hang out with them or want to become like them. I look back and, obviously I made it through high school ok, but I think I would have enjoyed having someone that I looked up to take an interest in me. And I hope that I can be someone like that for these young women. Someone approachable, honest, fun, godly, dependable, trustworthy, etc. I want to be a stable reminder that it's ok to be a woman...

"Being tender and open is beautiful. As a woman, I feel continually shhh'ed. Too sensitive, too mushy, too wishy-washy, blahblah. Don't let someone steal your tenderness. Don't allow the coldness and fear of others to tarnish your perfectly vulnerable beating heart. Nothing is more powerful than allowing yourself to truly be affected by things. Whether it's a song, a stranger, a mountain, a rain drop, a tea kettle, an article, a sentence, a footstep, feel it all -- look around you. All of this is for you. Take it and have gratitude. Give it and feel love." ~Zooey Deschanel

That they should always stand firm in their faith and what they believe in...

And that life is hard sometimes. It's ok to try and fail, but never to give up on dreaming...

"Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars; to change the world." ~Harriet Tubman 

     Live. Laugh. Love.

Saturday, June 28

Catching Up With My Personality

     I like to think of myself as a classy, mature, sincere "adult", but every December I turn back into a little kid that believes in magic and breathes nothing but Christmas. I become "hoppy" and consistently jump up and down and clap my hands when a birthday is afoot. And I can't help but become ecstatic when I see Easter candy or Thanksgiving cornucopias. To me, each of these things represents excitement and laughter, family and friends, and sometimes even change and a fresh start.
     Well this past week I've had something to celebrate and that is the life I was given 22 years ago. I am so grateful to be alive and well. And I am in awe of how far I've come as a person, and how God has placed me in certain places at specific times to be where I am today; living in a great apartment with an amazing husband. But along with all of these things, I am thankful for age. Finally!, I feel like I'm catching up with my personality!
     As a child, I sucked my thumb and carried around my blankie until I turned 5. Leading up to that birthday mom told me that big girls don't suck their thumbs and if I wanted to be a big girl I'd have to stop doing what babies do. So, I quit cold-turkey and that was the end of my "baby" days. Then for years leading up to my 10th birthday, all I wanted in life was a pet bunny. I worked hard to prove I was old enough to be responsible for a pet and then mom and dad surprised me with a white, baby bunny! (It was exactly what I wanted, and that is still one of the best birthdays I've ever had!) In my early teen years I worked hard to save every penny I earned cause I knew I was going to need money to buy a house one day. And although I didn't buy a house with that money, it did help Jon and I pay for our wedding. All in all, I enjoyed childhood but I've always been about five years older in my head than I was in real life. I think mentally I'm about 25 now, so I'm catching up! All that to say, I've always wanted to be a "big girl" and I love growing older. :)    
     Jon and I have been celebrating all week and I've gotten my hair cut, we went clothes shopping, then went to see Maleficent, I had dinner with one of my best friends on Monday, Jon made me breakfast in bed on Tuesday, then took me out for a really nice dinner, and we eventually ended up going for a swim that night at our rooftop pool. Aaahh, it was so romantic. I've got the best husband in the world!
     Also, I don't know if any of you have heard of Miranda Sings on YouTube but my sister Josie sent me her own rendition of a "Miranda video" for my birthday and it is hilarious! So I had to share...

     Live. Laugh. Love.

Tuesday, June 17

The Things I'm Striving For

     Jon started summer school last week to finish earning a degree in marketing and I am incredibly jealous that he's going to classes and has homework to complete. Growing up I absolutely did not love or covet school the way I do now, but I feel I've always had a certain passion for "learning". It's driving me insane to know that he's learning new things and I'm sitting at my desk fiddling with numbers and invoicing customers. Gah!, this just makes me want to go out and learn three new languages and the names of all the constellations or become an expert in European culture or human behavior or something!
     Needless to say, I've been contemplating what I want to do with my life; who I want to be. I believe in my deepest soul I was meant to be a wife, Jon's wife. And as long as I live I will continue to pursue being the best friend, wife, supporter, and confidant that I can be. Also, I love making our house a home, but I'm finding that I can't be a homemaker right now. There's another part of me that we are just discovering and she wants to grow to be somebody and to do something that's a different kind of worth-while.  I just want to go and do, to be out and about, and to experience the world along side Jon instead of hearing about it second-hand. I want to be a professional. I want to have a career. I want to be dependently independent, if that makes any sense...
     Anyway, as for my hopes and dreams and aspirations, here's what I've come up with so far.

What I Want To Do
  1. I want to interact with people and learn their stories.
  2. Know about different histories and cultures.
  3. Travel.
  4. Work my career, not a job.
  5. Bring people closer together.
Who I Want To Be
  1. I want to be an expert in my field, but be someone worth knowing rather than well known.
  2. Confident in myself and my God-given abilities and talents.
  3. A great listener.
  4. An encouragement and inspiration.
  5. Someone that makes everyone feel like a someone.
Live. Laugh. Love.

Saturday, May 24

It's About Time

     Hello there :) It's so nice of you to be reading this and checking in on us! Sorry I haven't been here in a while, but I've been living life as opposed to just writing about it and it has been fantastic. Busy, of course, but lovely just the same.
     Anyway, I believe it's time for me to get back in to blogging. Jon has been working really hard and I'm working from home all alone again so I've gotten a little bored, and well honestly I've missed writing out my thoughts and sharing stories from our everyday life. So, I'm back!

     Memorial Day/weekend is one of my all-time favorite times of the year for two reasons. 1) There's typically a three day weekend involved and 2) our anniversary happens to fall on this specific three day weekend. Whoohoo! (That was great insight on my mom's part, she had the good sense to think of that when we were narrowing down wedding day options) So, for the better part of the next seventy-two hours we will be celebrating our marriage of two years!
     We'll spend tonight enjoying the 'Day of Rock' street concert going on downtown complete with street vendors, food trucks, and protests for "No More GMO's". Lol, oh the hippies never cease to amuse me. ;) Then tomorrow we are leaving for a mini getaway that Jon planned for us. And I have to say I can't believe how on top of things he is when it comes to celebrations and special days, it makes me feel very loved.
     Sometimes I am frustrated by the inevitable need to express myself with a vocabulary that is incapable of encompassing the depths of my emotion when it comes to Jon, but I guess that's what I've always wanted; an indescribable love for someone. :) The best way I can think to put it is like this...
     These past two years have only opened my heart to a greater understanding of the true love shared not only by a woman and her man, but of a woman and her God. Because Jon is still, to this day, the best thing that has ever happened to me and our relationship is such a gift! It's not perfect by any means, but I cherish what we have in spite of our hiccups because even in the midst of a fight I am sure that he will never leave. On my frumpy days I am convinced I am still beautiful. When I struggle I have a best friend who is encouraging and points me in the right direction. And at the end of the day when I'm spent, moody, and don't deserve love I am overwhelmed by the image of God I see in this man I call my husband.

     I look forward to all of our days ahead and can't wait to see where life takes us next!
Happy anniversary, Babe. I love you!

Live. Laugh. Love.