Friday, October 29, 2010

Race for the Cure

Tomorrow I will be racing for the cure (for breast cancer). 
My sweet small group leader Paulette is sponsoring all of the girls in our small group to do this in honor of my roommie, Delaney's, mom who was diagnosed this semester. 
All 4 of my roommates will be waking up at about 7 in the morning to go walk.
I'm not sure that any of us are actually running for the race. We'll probably take our sweet time as we walk and enjoy the time together.
It is supposed to be in the 30s in the morning so we're going to have to bundle up!

I'm excited about it!

P.S. Laura did win state! 

Gooo Laura!

My athletic sister, Laura, is currently, right now, as I type, playing in the state championship for volleyball.

She is much more athletic than I have ever dreamed to be. She's competitive. She's coordinated. She's tall. She's a jumper. She's pretty much a beast.

I don't know if she'll win or not, but I'm just proud of her for getting this far!

I think that this is State last year. She's the one that's jumping in the middle. She just hit the ball. I think that's a good hit, forgot what it's called though.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Give Energy. Save Energy.

I went by Earthfare on the way home from Middle School Youth Group because they have a nice buffet every day with fresh cooked vegetables and some meats and I hadn't had a decent meal all day. 

It was 8:30 and I was getting tired because I slept only about 5 hours last night in order to study for a test I had today. I have another big test tomorrow, so I thought I'd get a coke for a little caffeine. Then I saw something that said, "Give Energy" and I thought, Yes! That is exactly what I need, energy! Plus it's all natural and only a few ingredients, so it looked like it wasn't as unhealthy as those other energy drinks.

And so, I drank this entire drink at about 9 PM. 

I've never really had an energy drink before besides a couple of times when I was driving a long way at night. I thought this "Give Energy" drink would just be like a coke--something cold, a little caffeine, would keep my eyes open for a couple of hours. 

This stuff is so much more than that.
I'm wide awake at 12:15 with no chance of going to sleep anytime soon.
I have been shaking and twitching a lot too.
It's kind of annoying.

But my purpose has been accomplished:
I got a lot of studying done.
Plus, I will continue to study some more...
Or maybe work on the Rubik's cube. 
Until this energy that I have been given wears off. 

But right now, I really just wish that I could Save Energy for tomorrow.
I just want to go to sleep.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Dangerous Drink!!

Just thought you might find this funny... All you have to do is watch about the first 30 seconds, but it's my 10 seconds (or maybe less) of fame.

The story is kind of interesting though, so you could watch it all the way through if you have a minute.

No one that I know in Knoxville watches the news... Too bad it wasn't the Chatt news, could have surprised Mom and Dad!

[The video has been removed, but the link to the written story is below.]

Monday, October 25, 2010

Nashville Weekend

I had a fun weekend in Nashville.
Gotta make this post quick since I have 3 tests and a presentation that I should be working on... 
Here are some pictures! 

We went on a train ride to Cookeville and had so much fun.

Lots of good pictures of Geo and I... 

Didn't know I had those wrinkles.
Or that my skin was as pale as a ghost.

I'm smiling. He looks disgusted.

I need to learn not to take pictures of us... 
I do it to be funny but maybe we should stop all together.
These were rough. 

The Titans game was a blast as well.

It was really good to be in Nashville and get to visit with Geo's parents and meet his sister and her kids. And I got to see my two aunts as well! Got lots of visiting in!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Is this really happening?

I can't sleep because every time I close my eyes, I imagine that I'm holding one of these... 

And in my head, I'm moving the red around and trying to figure it out. 
Of course, it is impossible because I can't remember all the colors on each side.
And when I get the red moved where it needs to be, I can't remember which ones were already red on that side.
And so the game goes on and on and on... 

I played with one of these for a couple of hours tonight at Geo's house.
I'll never do that before going to bed again.
I'll probably have dreams about it.
That would be better than not sleeping because of it.

Is this really happening?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Pray, pray, pray

For the Carpenter family.

They are a family who lives in my neighborhood at home and goes to our church. They were missionaries until their father died. When they came back here, my grandmother and their mother were good friends.

In May, Marie Carpenter, a sweet girl who we grew up with, Mary's age, fell off of a cliff on the mountain. It was at a place that I go all the time when I'm home.

She was at that overlook because she had just found out that her baby niece had died two hours earlier. That family lost two young people in one day.

Today, their son Winship, who is a year older than me, died in the same place that Marie did.

Three young people gone in a half of a year for that family.

I can't imagine how they feel. I can't fathom the fact that God could be big enough to heal the wounds of that family. I don't know why God would allow such a thing to happen to this amazing family.

This I know: Our God is a healer, a provider, THE creator of each and every person; He has a purpose with each life that He made; He sees our pain; He is Sovereign; and He is the Most High God. He is the Lover of our souls. He is with us through the good and the bad. He is the Lord.

The more prayers for this precious family, the better.

The Apparent Project.

So many times I don't realize my blessings...

Until I read blogs like The Apparent Project.

The Apparent Project is a nonprofit in Haiti. It consists of a missionary family who lives in Haiti and began some businesses for the Haitians to work at in order to provide jobs and a way to make money on their own. They make bracelets, necklaces, stationery, and children's clothing. It's an awesome ministry, as the missionary family is brilliant and very strategic in helping the Haitians there.

Anyways, I was reading their blog, and I began to think about how blessed I am being a woman in the United States. I never really think about that. 

I've thought about how blessed I am to have all the things I have--food, car, house, clothes, etc. But not really about my rights as a women. I kind of put those in the category of feminism, and I think those days are over. We have won our battle, and that's all that matters.

Many of the women in Haiti, and in a lot of the world, are abused by their husbands, and it's not looked down upon like it is here.

A lot of women never even have the chance to get married because it's too expensive. How sad would that be? Never having the commitment of marriage.

They are cheated on a whole lot.

They don't have men who desire to serve them in a Christ-like manner, and or even respect them at all. They can't complain about having so much to do as a stay-at-home mom. They most likely have nothing to do at all. No work, little food, and not much house work, as they live in tents. They might have to walk far for water, but I feel like they probably aren't nearly as busy as us American women think we need to be, doing things like In Style recommends for the "To-Do List" for today. "1. Get Flawless foundation. 2. Discover 5 beauty products that flatter everyone. 3. Get expert answers on your fashion questions." Those things are crazy, and I don't even realize it until I think about these Haitian women.

There might be benefits to the simplicity of their lives that I don't recognize... But I can't say there is any benefit to being beaten. 

Shelly from the Apparent Project writes about the plight of even Christian women, "How is it that I could go to their church in cut-off jeans, dyed hair, nose ring and sporting tattoos and they wouldn't say boo, but a Haitian single mom living in the mud would be thrown out because her clothes aren't clean enough. How is it that women all over the world are in such a precarious position in life. YES! We American women have it SOOOOO good compared to 90% of the rest of the world. We are treated so much more fairly."

During childbirth, they wouldn't even dream of getting their own hospital room. They are lucky to get a bed. "Every woman I saw was by herself, crying in the dark in the rain as the pains of childbirth ravaged her. Every woman was without a hand to hold, without a calm voice to reassure, every woman was... alone. There were no less that 50 woman in labor, on the floor, in the hallways, screaming, bleeding, by themselves. No family was allowed to enter."

I am so thankful for all of the rights that I have as an American woman. I am so blessed to live here, and I long to help, somehow, these Haitian women, men, and children.

The Apparent Project needs money for their ministry--to be able to pay the rent for the building that the families work in and have school in, and to help buy houses for the many families who live in tents. If you want to check out their blog, and maybe even donate, it would be so great. I have been to meet this missionary family, and our team decided that they might be the most effective ministry that we saw in Haiti. 

The people of Haiti have been on my heart and mind lately, and I want to do anything I can to help them. Alone, I can't make even a hint of change there, but with the Lord our Provider, Jehovah-jireh, and with people like... you! it is possible.

Click here to read more about the ApParent Project and what is going on in Haiti now.
Click here to contribute to the ApParent Project.

Monday, October 18, 2010

The Great Workout: Round 2

I did my workout for the semester yesterday. If you will remember the last time I worked out, you know that I always have good intentions, but I have never really enjoyed the process.

Whenever I do work out, it's always a tough one.
I never start out with like 30 crunches and 30 push ups and one lap.

Yesterday, Mary talked me into going to the Body Sculpt class at the TREC.
I should have known from the name not to go.
It was a fun class, but I almost collapsed on the 15th minute of lunges.
Then almost fell on my nose on about the 32nd push up when she said, only 8 more!
8 more... That's how many I do total when I "work out" at home.

I have highlighted below where I ache right now:

Just those places are sore, no where else.
The only thing that it affects is my walking, backpack holding, bending, turning, sitting, and walking down stairs.
I can do everything else just fine. 
I feel great when I'm laying down!

Today is the first day after the workout which is never as bad as the second day after.
My whole body currently feels like a bruise.
I'm dreading tomorrow.

Anyways, here is my thinking about working out:

1. The instructor wasn't even that "sculpted," and she could do the workout without even getting out of breath. I'm not sure if I believe in working out. Does it really make you more sculpted? All these girls there could do the workout regimen like it was a piece of cake, but I would have never thought they looked that fit.
Okay, maybe that was too honest to put on a public place...
I'm just saying--it's questionable.

2. Working out takes a lot of time. You have to change into clothes, drive to the place, spend an hour, then shower and get ready again. That's like 2 or 3 hours of the day gone. How do people have time to do that every day? They must not sleep.

Okay, that's all for my complaining. 
Mary and Geo are both saying I should go back next week. 
I'm still thinking about it.
When it comes down to it, I know what will probably happen.
I'll probably happen to get a really bad cold that day.
Sundays are supposed to be a day of rest anyways.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Ryan Edwards: My All Time Most Popular Post

It's pretty sad. 

My all time most popular post, meaning the one that the most people have read... 
is not because anyone cares about my blog or what I write.

It's because people search: Ryan Edwards, 16 and Pregnant.
My blog pops up 5th on the google search. Lovely.
I wrote that post last December, almost a year ago, and people are still reading it.
I had no idea that it would be any different from any other post.
I just thought I was writing about a guy from high school who is on that show.

Little did I know how popular he would get. 
Little did I know that people would be reading my blog because I know him.
Little did I know that I would see his face on the front cover of a magazine in Dollar General.


Anyways, I just thought it was funny that my most popular post is about Ryan Edwards, that guy from high school who wasn't even one of my friends.

I have always hoped that he hasn't searched his name on google and found my writing about him. That would be pretty embarrassing. But let's be real here. Being famous and all, he has probably googled his name to see what all people say about him. He has probably read all about what I thought about him in high school. If you have read the post, you'd see why it would be awkward.

That's my luck. 
(My luck is always for something embarrassing to happen.)
I just read the first paragraph of the post and was too embarrassed to keep reading, knowing that he has probably read it. 

(And maybe the post will become even more popular. Woo Whoo!)

Where I Would Like to be Right Now...

I would love to be at the Florida house right now. 

My parents are down there now, and I'm very jealous. Fall is one of my favorite times there. Perfect sunsets, amazing weather, good sales at the outlets...
I really miss it. 

I haven't been there since Spring Break, and our family hasn't been there together in two years. We were supposed to go last Christmas, but instead Mary and I got stuck in NYC and the fam was there without us. 

I'm really excited that we are all 5 going together after Christmas, along with the cousins--Merd, Malone, and Em!

If I could choose anywhere to be right now, it would be on Lake Harris in Florida with the parents. It would be sunset, and we'd be in sweatpants and t-shirts out on the lake with "Just the Way You Are" playing on the radio.

Black Bean and Corn Enchiladas

I made these black bean and corn enchiladas for dinner tonight.

(Picture from Betty Crocker where I got the recipe.)

Anyways, they were so easy. Just a few ingredients, combine, roll into enchiladas, and bake.

The recipe doesn't call for it, but you could add chicken if you were up to it. The only reason I cook without meat is because it takes a whole, long step out of the process.  Unless I'm cooking for other people, I usually eat meatless and get meat when I eat out. I don't have anything against meat except that it takes too long.

For my enchiladas, I really didn't follow the recipe at all. We already had some black bean dip with corn, tomatoes, onions, and red peppers, so I combined that with green chiles, a little enchilada sauce and a cup of cheese for the filling. Then I rolled it into the tortillas, topped with enchilada sauce and cheese and baked for 30 minutes.

Nat made some guacamole that is really good and easy--3 avocados, some tomato, some onion, splash of lemon juice, pepper, splash of olive oil, and Goya Adobo seasoning (the secret ingredient that is no longer a secret).

I'm not much of a measurer, so I just did everything to how I wanted it to taste. It takes out a lot of dishes and cuts some time out.

That's our dinner! Along with blue chips and the new, old Dr. Pepper with real sugar (my fave)!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Weird or Fun?

Jessie told me about some girls she met in the park the other day. There were two girls about our age who looked a lot like us, and they were sitting at a picnic table with a sign that said, "Want to talk? We'll listen!" The girls had lemonade and were willing to listen to anyone.

The girls just asked Jessie if she wanted them to listen and not say anything at all, or to listen and pray at the end, or to listen and then give some advice at the end.

My thoughts on this...

Am I weird for thinking that it would be really fun to listen to random people like that?

I would love it.

Spring Break Plans

It seems a little early to be thinking about Spring Break, but it's time to make plans. I have a few options, and I'm having a really hard time deciding.

1. I could go on Senior Chi O spring break. I'm pretty sure they are going on a cruise in the Caribbean for 6 days. It would be really nice and it's not too expensive. It would be fun to be with my pledge class for one last time before we graduate.

2. My small group is going on a mission trip, probably to Haiti. I would love to go, and Haiti has been on my heart since I got back, so I think it would be really exciting to go back. But, the problem is that it's a lot more expensive than the cruise, and I hate asking people for money, and I would have to raise $1200 after raising money in July. Plus Mary is going, so that's raising double the amount of money from all the same people.

(I think about this girl, Orlancia, all the time.)

Oh, how I miss them all! 

Looking at these pictures really makes me want to go back.

If I'm honest, looking at these pictures makes me really not want to go back: 

Our sleeping quarters and the sweaty/nasty/gross/dirty feeling are the only things holding me back. Oh yeah, and being a little scared of Haiti, too! But I could get past that. How selfish am I being?

3. Anyways, lastly, I could go to the Florida house with who knows who. This would be extremely inexpensive, and very relaxing. This choice seems like the easy way out. It requires the least amount of effort and planning, which is why I lean towards that one. But the thing is--I can always go to Florida, for the rest of my life probably. I can't always go with my pledge class on a cruise or with my small group to Haiti.

What should I do?

Any recommendations?