Tuesday, February 28, 2006

I can't believe this

After such a long silence it's almost wrong to break it. You know my life is slowing down when I return to the blog world. Things have been so hectic the past few months (OK, maybe longer) that I have not even thought about posting. I did notice that Brit was back in so I think reading her hilarious entries this week re-inspired me. I have nothing funny to say today, but you can't expect too much right away. A quick re-cap for those who may not know, Erin is now gone for the next 5 1/2 months on deployment so I am setting up a plan of attack on how I will stay busy to distract myself. : ( I have all kinds of goals including more Bible study, guitar, scrapbooking and surfing so maybe blogging will have to join the list. I bet 5 1/2 months will be gone before I know it - time flies faster and faster the older I get. I do appreciate those who have patiently waited to see if I'd ever blog again. If you're reading this, drop me a line so I know what you're all up to!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

where have I been?

I have had a good excuse for not blogging lately. I know I'm not going to win the blogger of the year award or anything so it's OK, but wanted to give a quick update. This past week my boyfriend was in town visiting from CA and since I do not get to see him often I chose not to dedicate my time to blogging while he was here. We had a great time - my family came down to visit and some of his family came from CO to visit the next weekend. It was really really nice. The cool thing about it was he was being honored for an award that he received and the ceremony was in Myrtle Beach, SC of all places - they actually sent him out here to visit me! I won't say much more because I know he'd rather not have his life published on the internet : ) I will say that he is wonderful and God has really blessed me with re-uniting us (it's a good story if you haven't heard it).

On another note, my small group is AWESOME. We met again tonight and I have seen a lot of amazing things already in the past 4 weeks. It has strengthened my faith and encouraged me a lot as one of their leaders. I am very excited about our group project. This is what community is all about.

God is definitely working in major ways and I just want to praise Him and thank Him for what he is doing!

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

case of the Mondays

Today started out rough - I woke up and was really sick from something I ate last night. I get to work and nothing seems to be going right. Everyone wants something working immediately and instead nothing is working at all. People are frustrated and it's FREEZING in our office (that's a given). All morning I thought about just walking out and going back home. To top it off, I had 5 messages from people telling me my voice mail message was out of date. Obviously I don't care - If they knew me they'd know I never even answer my phone at work. I had a bad case of the Mondays.

The good news is things started brightening up this afternoon. Issues started getting resolved, progress was made, went to lunch with Britt and Laura, I kept my lunch down, it rained (sometimes that makes me happy), our gynormous new conference table arrived, I ran errands successfully and came home to a beautifully clean house.....AND found out I could save 15% or more on car insurance. No, not really, but I did find out I could save money on cable and internet and that made me happy. I even made dinner and went through my small group lesson preparation for this week! Erin called and the good news is that he is coming here in 3 DAYS!!! Bad news is there is a slight hang up in the paperwork so pray that gets resolved tomorrow....I believe that it will.

Despite how our days progress or digress, whether trivial or life changing, it's good to know that no matter what the circumstances, we always have a reason for joy. It's hard not to let things get to me, but there is something very nice about being to step back, relax, and know that God is in control, and things will work out in the end.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

surprise!

I'm not really sure how I feel about surprises. I mean, everyone loves to GET surprises, but if you're the one giving the surprise, pulling it off and doing it well takes a LOT of planning. For those who don't have the gift of planning, trying to surprise someone with something can turn out to be a downright mess. Take, for example a surprise party. I mean, how many of us have tried to surprise someone and then had the person we were trying to surprise not really cooperate. You're suddenly forced to make up a story or scenario to trick them into doing what you want them to at the right time without flat out lying to them (which some of you opt for anyway). Since no one can say anything to the person about what is going on, they often feel sad and rejected the day of their special event when no one so much as speaks to them for fear of saying something that might give away the secret.

And what about the guests? You have to cover your tracks and over emphasize that what you're doing is a surprise so some loud mouth doesn't blab it to the wrong person and ruin everything you've been working on. Then you have to hope that your guests arrive on time and arrange for them to park in some discreet location (usually the neighbors aren't too excited about the cars in front of their houses instead of yours). Inevitably you have the person who strolls in late and is walking up at the same time the person you're surprising gets there. Then it's like "Oh hi! What are you doing here?"...and it's all ruined.

Man - what a lot of planning. And for what? For the look on their face the one split second from the time they open the door until everyone jumps out and shouts at them. Is it worth it? If you can pull it off without them suspecting anything and then see them get really scared and pee their pants in front of a large crowd....yes. If not, you may want to re-think your plans and just tell them what's going on so they can at least look forward to the joyous occasion with friends and family.

Friday, September 30, 2005

confessions of a skeptic

Tonight was our first real small group and I am so psyched right now. The group was really fun and everyone seems to be on board and excited about this whole thing. I must admit, I was skeptical. The last group I led had been together forever and was fairly predictable. I knew this one was going to be much different. Sitting alone in my living room at 7:38 pm when the group starts at 7:30, I decided that no one was going to show up and I became very discouraged. Turns out traffic was bad and before I knew it the couches were full of people. We have a very eclectic group, to say the least, and we all come from different situations, beliefs, personalities and backgrounds. Most have never been in a small group before and have no idea what to expect, but everyone has come together and it already feels like a family. One girl, in the middle of something else chimed in and said "I just want to say that this is the first time I've felt at home since I've lived in Charleston and I've been here for a year." That's what it is all about. We need each other and we will benefit by coming together to help other people. We have so many ideas and plans to implement service projects that we might be able to pull off one a week. That's how excited they are about it and it's going to be amazing. Praise God for this!

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

customer service

I think the motto used to be "the customer is always right" but lately it feels like most business operate on the theory "I've had a long day and I really don't care what you want." Well today I was surprised, shocked really, at the amazing customer service I received when I decided to get the oil changed in my car. I stopped in at the Auto Care Express in Mt Pleasant across from the Towne Center since they have a nice little combo where they'll change your oil, check all your fluids and wash and clean out your car all at once. I pulled up at 5:03 pm. What I didn't realize is that they closed at 5:00 pm. The manager was standing by the door and as I walked up I saw the times behind him. He asked if he could help me and I said I had hoped to get my oil changed, but I didn't realize they were closed and I could come back tomorrow. Normally this is where they say "Sorry, we're closed." Instead, he said "No problem - it's ok. We'll be happy to do that for you now." They had already stared closing up the shop, but immediately pulled my car in, changed the oil, added power steering fluid and then offered to wash and vacuum it. Not only that, but they did a very thorough job. They had to spend extra time changing the power steering fluid since it was apparently impossible to reach, asked me if I'd like a custom scent air freshener spray, hand vacuumed the insides (since their machines had already been shut down for the evening) and were extremely friendly and smiling the whole time. I was really in shock. At 5:40 pm (40 minutes AFTER they closed) they sent me on my way and the car looked great! To top it off, I was going to tip them well and before I even got to the car to hand them a tip, they had already gone inside, calling back to me to have a great evening and come again. Why thank you, I will. I would recommend it to anyone in the area. It's amazing how nice it is to get great service.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

the newest blog

Ok now I really have to keep on top of my posting because I have been slack on my blog and now I've started a 2nd blog! This one is a little different - it's for our small group that is going to start on Thursday night. My roommate Brittany and I (check out the link on the right to Britt's blog - she's hilarious) are leading a group at our house and we're excited about starting it. We weren't sure who, if anyone, would end up coming but we had a cookout last weekend and had about 12 people show up so that was encouraging! For anyone who cares, our small group blog is www.annexgroup.blogspot.com so feel free to check it out. The group should be extremely fun - Britt and I came up with some pretty random ideas last night of how to keep it fun and lively so I'll post them as we execute our secret plans : )

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

lessons from the wasabi peas

My new found enthusiasm for wasabi peas is turning out to be more of a love/hate relatioship. I was so excited when I bought them from the grocery store that I decided to break them open in the car on the way home. I popped a few in my mouth as I was rounding the corner and almost ran off of the road. I guess you aren't supposed to breathe in with wasabi in your mouth because I was suddenly overcome with intense pain. My throat and nose were burning off and my eyes started watering like crazy (not good when you're driving). Lesson: only eat one pea at a time and be careful how you breathe when you do it.

I was still super excited and brought them along with my random assortment of lunch items to work the next day. (Shawn is convinced I am on a mission to find the weirdest things they sell in the grocery store). I open them up at work and start getting weird looks and questions. I wanted to be nice and offered some to Shawn, assuring him they were not that spicy. In my opinion, spicy is jalepeno, not wasabi. I would call it strong and painful burning, but not spicy. He begrudgingly took a few and instantly went for the trash can, spitting them out as fast as they went in. I guess he doesn't have a taste for them. Lesson: spicy is a matter of opinion, but if someone says "it's not that spicy" don't believe them.

At that point I saw an opportunity for some office entertainment and quickly made my way to Jessica's desk. Of course her and Mac were more than curious to try the new snack. They both had the same reaction with the trash can, but next thing you know, Mac is empting out his pockets and asks for a few more. Jessica gives him a funny look and says, "You aren't planning on putting them in your pocket are you?" To which he replies, "Well, I was going to take some home for my family to try." Hmmmm, I wonder how appealing lint covered wasabi peas are at the end of a long work day. He quickly realized that was not the best idea and wrapped them in a napkin. Lesson: it is never a good idea to store food in your pocket. Think about the tots.

I quickly realized my intrigue with the wasabi peas was not shared by others so I returned to my desk to snack on them alone. As I continued eating them I noticed I was starting to get really fired up about things and rather hyper. My body temperature started rising. I seriously think I had a fever. I decided that was a good sign to put the wasabi peas away for a while. Today I started noticing the skin is falling off of the inside of my mouth. My "fun little snack" is not so fun anymore. If it's doing that to my mouth, what is happening to the lining on my stomach!?! Lesson: stay away from wasabi peas. They can be damaging to your health.

For those of you who asked "What is wasabi anyway?" Read on...

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

on that note

You know another thing that is under-rated? Handwritten letters....the kind you actually get in the mail that pass through the post office and take a stamp. Now I'm all for new media and communication seeing as how that's my job, but there's an anticipation and a value that came with getting a real card or letter from someone in the mail that you just don't get with your inbox or a text message. There is something cool about reading their words in their handwriting, on their paper. Maybe what we need is a program that creates personalized fonts that exactly match your handwriting. Do they have something like that? If not, they should. That would be cool.

Monday, September 19, 2005

will work for food

We've been talking a lot about community lately (well not really but since I've been working on this 40 days stuff for the past 400 days it seems like it has been talked about a lot), but it really is a great little concept. It's too bad so much of it has been lost in how we live. We're taught to be self-sufficient and independent...that we don't need other people and we shouldn't need help. The thing is, there really is enough of everything to go around if we all did our part. I know that sounds a bit socialistic, but really it's about community. We all have things that we're better at or that we enjoy that other people could benefit from. It's the concept Greg talked about this past weekend of making known what you have to share.

I've experienced it already this week in a few ways and it just makes me think of how much more we could all do. For example, I enjoy working in my yard, but it has been really HOT here lately and mowing the grass is something that no one at my house has been excited about doing. I have, however been excited about cooking which is always more fun when there are people there to eat the food. Well, there you go - I have someone volunteer to mow the grass for some home cooked food and we have a match! They liked mowing the grass, I liked cooking the food and we're all happy. Simple, yes, but how well it works!