Friday, April 5, 2013

Funny How Dreams Change...

Today I was searching my heart for where I thought I would be 5 years This May it will mark me being out of high-school for 5 years, graduated and thrown out into the "real-world". Who would have thought that at 18 years old my "real-world" would consist of going to hair-school 40 hours a week with no "real" job and sporting my parent's mini-van as a primary form of transportation. Okay so maybe I used the term real-world a little loosely there. Regardless I graduated high-school with high hopes of falling in love with the glamorous hair career, building up clientele, and climbing the small business ladder as an entrepreneur eventually owning my own salon. Funny how life changes right? It took me a year later with a barber's license in hand and school loans in taken out in my name to start losing grip on that ambitious dream. Turns out it is hard to build clientele, they don't just pour through the door and as most people can see just by looking around there are plenty stylists on every corner, so what makes you stand out? For me my passion died at the door where my clientele were consistently not rushing in. Then I did what every teenage girl does when she is feeling down and out, I ran. When I say I ran I didn't just run, but flew to another continent to start a new beginning. However I learned you can never out run your problems, they are funny little things in that manner; for they can follow you clear over the ocean. THIS IS WHERE I FORGOT HOW TO DREAM Then about a year later I started to dream again, I enrolled in college and started towards my true passion, teaching. I have 2 years left until I finally begin that portion of my dream, but in 1 month I get to begin another part of my dreams... The dream of marrying my best friend, of finding someone so special that they would teach me to genuinely love unconditionally, to have dreams of a future, a family, and a forever. 5 years ago I would have told you I had no idea where I would be today, but I can tell you 5 years from today I will be married to my best friend with 3 amazing kids and nothing in the world other than that matters. Dreams are important. What are yours?

Thursday, December 27, 2012

What to expect when you are not expecting.

For several months now I have had the privilege of having not 1, not 2, but 3 children in my life about 3 days a week; their ages range from 6-12 and boy are they characters! These kids are not just any kids they are my boyfriend's family, his "crew" is what he likes to call them. As many of you know I personally am 23 with no children of my own, with that being said I figured it would be fun to write about some of the things I am learning as my life is transitioning and merging with my man's family. So far I have learned....

1. That Santa is actually a hard working crew consisting of both Billy and I dodging parents up and down the aisles of Target and Wal-Mart deciding on the best presents. Then patiently waiting up past our bedtime to ensure that the kids are passed out before one of us stuffs the stockings while the other stands guard and vise versus while the other sets up the x-box connect.

2. I have learned that kids will say whatever with no filter so put on your thick skin with em' around. So far the 12 year old has told me my cooking is terrible and that I somehow manage to screw up everything I cook. *Which for the record is only half-right...I mean I might have set off the smoke alarm this morning cooking sausage, but hey these things happen!

3. Sometimes your efforts are over-exhorted with little to no thank or appreciation; kids really just see the world revolving around them, but it makes it that much more special whenever they do notice and genuinely show gratitude.

4. Loud happens A LOT! 3 kids in one house can be insanely loud.

5. Funny happens, quite frequently! I have never been so entertained by another human in the manner of which these children do, they are hysterical more often than not.

6. Cooking becomes a fun activity rather than a tedious chore with a child helping out, although the pancake batter might be a little thin, the cookies a little lumpy, and the sausage patties a little thicker than usual it just becomes entertainment.

7. Sometimes things don't go as planned... glasses break, drinks get spilled, sticky things end up on the coffee table, and the house isn't spotless. This is called life and living perfection becomes imperfection...Turns out I just needed 3 precious kids to teach me this.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

I Get A Kick Out Of You

“I get no kick from champagne. Mere alcohol doesn't thrill me at all, so tell me why should it be true? I get a kick out of you. Some, they may go for cocaine. I'm sure that if I took even one sniff it would bore me terrifically, too. Yet I get a kick out of you.” – Frank Sinatra

Oh Frank I have always longed to feel the feeling described in the above lyrics, yet never have…that is until now. I have been so ridiculously blessed these past couple of weeks that I can’t quite contain myself. So I am giving up and writing about it, I have been in a very dry desert of a season for quite some time and well the storm has finally past. God has swept in and saved the day with a peace that surpasses all, regardless of my own wavering thoughts. I worried over finding a new job, but I gave it away to God. I was DONE with dating after 2 years of being the “single girl” I gave it a shot and got burned so I WAS DONE… but realized that wasn't the attitude I was supposed to have so I gave it to God. I was mad at myself because I wanted to be in the word more, but couldn't find the time. Then I gave it to God. I looked in the mirror and thought to myself who am I? I don’t even know who I am… but then I did what I had been consistently doing I laid it at his feet.

Then I found a resource for finding a new job. Though I have yet to find one I know there are resources available now! Also it just so happens I met this ridiculously hilarious/handsome man who loves God just as much as I do and well he is “best friend material”-step brothers inside joke. Lucky for me he saw how fantastic I am as well and snagged me as his girlfriend! (This man is hands down the one who makes me understand Frank’s quote I began the blog with.) Finally I know who I am and what I want now more than ever, because God has been shaping me into who he has called me to become!

As strange as it sounds with everything going so right it does make me look at the hard storm season past with bitter-sweet reminisce. Storms are there to draw us into Christ and when we get out of them we have to actively push towards him rather than being straight drawn into him. I am so blessed to be out of the storm and can finally see why I had to be sucked into the twister to be refined in the funnel and frenzy…To learn the art of daily depending on Christ to remain. Just remain.

I will one day look back on this post in a rainy season again sometime and find comfort and peace in the words I have spoken.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Lessons in a Recreated Studio Apartment

My apartment reminded me of chic vintage and travel...I had to condense all of my souvenirs into a room; it has been a challenge but I feel I did alright with what I am working with...

This evening has been quite the miracle, please let me elaborate. I live with my parents trying to keep debt to a minimum being a full-time student. For those who don't know, well moving back home can be tough as an adult! On top of this task I also live with a brother who isn't exactly the most considerate when it comes to the phrase "peace and quiet." By considerate I mean the only time there is complete silence in the home is whenever he is either gone or sleeping. However tonight is a true God-send, my brother is gone and both parents are asleep, did I mention it is only 10:00 pm!? So I took the liberty of pouring up a glass of wine, lighting a few candles, dimming the lights, and turning on some soft tunes of Jamie Cullum. Typing that out it totally sounds like I am trying to seduce someone, but I assure you I am not this is just my 100% favorite kind of living. Simple, peaceful, and a tad bit romantic without any real romance truly being present. Beautiful when one can actually stop the rat-race called life and appreciate the quiet spirit God has placed in each individual living under his grace. My challenge for you this week is to take a moment and appreciate life, even if it means recreating an entire atmosphere only to relax in. I promise you won't be disappointed, do yourself a favor and learn that there is so much more than the rat-race friends.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Blessed Gift Of Relaxation: Priceless

As of lately I must call it out! I have indeed been a bit of a pessimist, as I am sure my blog has reflected this. For that fact I apologize, thank you for being a faithful reader even through the trials...Today was an exceptionally grand day and when you have such an incredible day in the middle of such a challenging time in life it can be a game changer. That being said let me tell you about my game changing day!

This morning I woke up less than enthused to rise and go listen to my pastor explain the dangers of debt; as you all know I am a college kid digging myself in that hole semester by semester especially by only working part time. But this series has really been digging deep into my soul, convicting me to strive harder, keep working full time and endure full time school as well, for it is all only for a season right? However you know how conviction works right? It is that consistent spiritual beckoning to change. If you know anything about me you know I don't do well with change. I once yearned for change in every way possible, but now I enjoy a steady/normal/non-changing environment and attitude. This morning I also knew my usual "Sunday Crowd" would not be at church so this fact also made my pillow fortress/bed seem all the more appealing. Somehow I managed to scramble around, throw on some well-worn jeans, and a cliche LifeChurch.Tv tee and head out the door. But not before slinging a cup coffee around while brushing my hair back into a disheveled excuse for a pony-tail and calling it "decent." Upon arrival I greeted a few friends and made my way to a seat near my 2 youth girls that consistently come to the 11:30 with their mother, it ended up being quite a nice change to worship with them on a Sunday rather than only the usual Wednesday evening.

After a compelling service I decided what my next step would be. Cut up and pay off my credit card, which is a huge step for me! Continue working a full time job to eliminate college debt, and pay off my car. I know these changes I have to make will be extreme but God will bless me through this I am certain...this brings me to the blessings. Here is what I experienced today.

1. Clarity on financial perspective: It is time to get serious and clean house.

2. An amazing sushi lunch, hour long massage, and Starbucks: From a friend who I have been doing her hair and son's hair for a hot minute. This was a gift I never ever even dreamed of receiving, but through blessing her with my talents she was able to bless me back today with the priceless gift of relaxation. I don't think she truly understands what a blessing she bestowed upon me today! We also stopped in a store called Lush in Penn Square Mall where we each splurged on beauty products. (It was my last splurge my final hurrah if you will of spending) I purchased some face-wash, face-mask, and a bath bomb...

3. A phenomenal life-group session: It was just nice! The weather was wonderful so we sat underneath the shaded trees in our favorite couple's backyard relating on the different stages of life we are currently in. Being transparent in our struggles and weaknesses.

4. Upon arriving home I decided it had been such a relaxing day I needed to end it with a bang. So I grabbed my bath bomb and headed for the tub! I have never purchased any sort of fancy bath bomb so I was a bit nervous, but within seconds of dropping the giant purple ball in my tub I was sold! It spun all around shooting out colors of first pink then blue traveling throughout my entire tub yet somehow never once hitting me! In the end my bathwater turned a deep purple with glitter shimmering throughout; hence the name of this bomb "Twilight" - the glitter shines as if it were stars in a dark sky. I felt like a kid again, finding entertainment within a bath accessory.

5. I got out of the tub feeling a little sad I had to wash all my pretty glitter and purple water away, but as I was applying my lotion I realized a little shimmer on leg...then I realized my whole body was still covered in tiny glitter "stars." This made my night, it truly is the little things in life. I am currently shining like a star literally.

6. This day renewed my hope, my has given me the courage to rise another day at 5:00 AM and keep on at this battle known as life. Not to say I didn't have it in me to "live another day." I just have been feeling a bit discouraged, but today reminded me that though I might be beat down I am not broken. I am still alive and breathing and there is joy in my soul. It is well with my soul...and as for tonight well I am a glittery princess.

**Also I found a new bottle of tide on my bookshelf that my mom bought me while I was out seriously that stuff is expensive so that was a really cool blessing as well!**

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Confessions in a Glass of Wine...

Setting the scene: I sit in my bed zebra print sheets disheveled around me, a faint song from a sophomore year "no name" band providing perfect background noise...(Taking Back Sunday to those of you who actually appreciate my narrative musical time machine), the soft glow of lamp-light cascading upon my silhouette and the laptop resting ever so gingerly upon my worn jeans. A glass of "Merlin" wine carefully placed upon a "Nutty Brunette" coaster I once took as a souvenir from a BJ's restaurant poised perfectly upon my night-stand. Now that you can visualize my writing atmosphere here is the true narrative of a story:

Amazing how when it rains it pours! But the beauty in the hail storm pelting down all around you is knowing eventually it has to end. Whether the hail balls are golf ball size or soft ball size they are "hail size" none-the-less and that crap hurts! I am still in the middle of my storm, but I have a feeling the hail is going to end soon. Who knows how much damage I will have to claim on insurance in the end; but it is okay. I am sure my insurance company will understand and cut me a sweet check in "wisdom." I read something here recently that pierced like a knife into my soul, James Macdonald writes in his book When Life is Hard "You're just trying to get by when Satan will come in and make a rush on you. You can find yourself stumbling and falling into thought patterns and action patterns that you thought were gone forever!" This has been my current battle daily; fighting the battles I thought were long gone from my heart, spirit, my very being. But that is what I have learned through this season so far is that during a "real hardship you are a target." Satan often times sees God's children going through a hardship caused by God to refine them and tries to twist it into something evil. He sees that every bit of your strength, resources, and energy are all going into surviving (Ref: James Macdonald.)

Currently that is where I am...people ask me how I am and I simply say I am surviving. "I am seeking God and I am surviving." It sounds pathetic and cheesy and I guess in a way it kind of is, but it is an honest answer at best. To be honest I am just a little irritated that not 1 but 2 people previously dear to me have managed to leave me alone picking up the pieces and wondering the infamous question of WHY? One may never know the real answer, but maybe that is the beauty of it. Could I handle the real honest answers of why? I don't know, but I do believe there is a reason I do not know why. I refuse to believe it is just coincidence, I believe there is protection of my heart in the grey areas of not knowing. My next step is accepting the events that have led up to this point and learning what I am expected to learn and move on. I feel stuck right now and very much a joke for not being able to just be like Jay Z and "Move onto the next one." Oh well. Time tells a story of healing and wisdom in each day that passes by so I will place my trust in this fact: God is good and he will restore my heart and being, until then I will faithfully seek him relentlessly.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

I should be studying...or be asleep.

But I have a list of things swirling around me in my mind so I figure I will tell the world about them in an attempt to clear my head before I go to bed.

1. I approved my private student loan on Saturday, but tomorrow is Thursday and they still have yet to disburse it.

2. I need to fill my gas tank up in the morning

3. I need to buy shampoo and conditioner tomorrow morning

4. I am technically to broke to do either of these things but they are essentials; thank God for parents.

5. I apparently owe some doctor's office $230 for some crappy ex-rays done on my left ankle back in February. I owe another doctor's office $60 for some biopsies of my stomach that proved useless. This is because my health insurance company stinks...well did stink. Seeing as now I am a part time employee and no longer have any. I also dug myself in a hole of $350 for 2 fillings and a crown before I lost my dental insurance. Debt stinks and I currently have a lot.

6. I am overwhelmed by school. The whole atmosphere, actual in class assignments, and participation...and lack of someone to spend my lunch break with has me feeling awkward and more socially out of place than ever before. In high school I was Miss. Knows Everyone. In college I am Ms. Knows no-one.

7. I should really be reading my Spark Notes over The Canterbury Tales right now, or doing a small sheet of homework due tomorrow for humanities, or my minuscule amount of homework for my general math for education course. *Note I am doing none of the above*

8. I am back to "non-relationship focus on school Meg"... I know you might think it is a lonely place to be and you are right for the first week it was rough, but God is good and so are my friends and family. They have and are continuing to help me understand that this is spiritual growth I am experiencing and not in vain. I am not alone and more often than not I am okay. Complacent with Jesus and myself kickin it.

9. I am currently reading "When Life is Hard" by James Macdonald. I feel there is no better time than the present to read such a book.

10. All of this to say I AM LETTING GO! There is already a whirl-wind of chaos surrounding me so I might as well be sucked into the matter. God is going to take care of me, this I know for certain. I must stop and trust him and stop trying to figure it all out. Stop trying to guess God's next move is like this life is one big "celestial game of chess" we are playing guessing which pawn he will put into position next. WHO KNOWS!? AND WHO CARES!? He is God and I am not. For I am simply clay in the Potter's hands. - Isaiah 64:8

My whirlwind...From what I see it is chaos, from God's view it is love.