Thursday, September 27, 2012

Family is a Special Thing

The past couple of weekends have been so full of joy! How could I not share with you all what a wonderful family I have been blessed with.

Two weekends ago, I made the trip home to Louisville to spend some quality time with my sister [in-law] and nephew. Friday night, Samuel and his friend Lane came to dinner, and boyfriend came along too! I do not think there is anything, besides Jesus, that bring more joy to my heart than sitting around the dinner table with my family. Saturday, we had made plans to visit Huber's in southern Indiana! Even though we only walked away with 2 apples and a pumpkin, I would say the trip was totally worth it just to see Ryder's face when he got to ride on the tractor.

When we got back home, it was definitely time for a nap. So, Vee and I made ourselves comfortable on the couches for a couple of hours! Now that we were well rested, Vee and I were ready to go shopping. I just want to stop and say how thankful I am to have two sisters who I just love to hang out with. While they may not be my biological sisters, I definitely feel like they fit so perfectly into our family that I finally have the big sisters I always wished for [sorry John, I used to wish you were a big sister, but I am glad you aren't :)].

And then Sunday. The day that Vee and I had been waiting for. The day that we would get to experience the best and most wonderful musical production, WICKED!!!!!!!!!!! While this is not the first time I have seen Wicked [its the third], it never fails to entertain and amaze me!

This past weekend was also such a fun weekend and full of so much joy. My BEST FRIEND GOT MARRIED!!!!!!!! I am so thankful I was able to be a part of such a beautiful day and could support such a wonderful couple that is coming together to serve and glorify the Lord. And, man, did she look beautiful or what!?

Not only did I get to participate in the wedding festivities, but I got to spend some much needed time with my other sister [in-law]. Meghan and Becky lived together for a period of time before Meg met John and got married. So, Meg was in the wedding too. Sisters are just great for so many things, but the advice that I get from Meg is something I treasure. She always helps me see the side of a situation that I fail to see, she is encouraging, but also honest [in a gentle, loving way].

But, I have to say. I would not have these sisters in my life if it weren't for my two brave, handsome and Christ-pursuing brothers marrying these amazing women. Chris and John, although I always wanted big sisters, I have to say that I would never in a million years trade you all to have that [I used to tell John all the time that I wish he were a big sister]. Thank you for everything you do, for serving our Country, and loving your wives! You all have set such an incredible example of what a godly man should look like .

And last, but certainly not least, my parents. I have always been thankful for my parents, but in the past couple of weeks I have been more and more amazed at how my parents love each other and our family. They truly are a great example of the kind of parents I want to be when I get married and start a family.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Lexington is fun

Recently, I feel like I have been asked this question a lot: "How is life outside of Georgetown?"  I can definitely understand the reasoning behind such question, however, I am very curious as to what people are expecting to hear. Do they want to hear how much I miss my college life? Do they think, life outside of college just isn't fun at all? Or do they think that post-college life is blissful and just want to know how it is?

So, here is my answer! :)

I love it.

I won't say there aren't days that I miss taking 2 steps away from my dorm room and being greeted by a group of sorority sisters procrastinating on homework to have a dance party in the hall way. But, I can say that I do not miss the constant stress of another assignment due, or the incredible amount of meetings there was to attend, or the caf.............

So, what is it that I love so much about post-college life?

Well, I got the opportunity to live in a cozy little apartment on Kirklevington Drive with my best friend before she got married... I was able to work with the Youth Ministry and hang out with high school girls all summer... I nannied (for a hot minute)... I layed out at the pool on my days off... I made new friends (one of which got me the awesome job I have now.. THANKS ASHLEY!)... I got to go on vacation and visit my brother and SIL...I got a new job (with big girl benefits and big girl hours)... I live in the same city as boyfriend (finally)... I get to live with my other best friend/sorority sister at the end of this month... I have been learning how to cook new things... I love being a regular attendee at Tates Creek Presbyterian Church and plugging into a Women's bible study... I am learning how to get around Lexington (on back roads!!)... I go to bed really early (I love sleep)... and I am so excited for what else is in store for me in Lexington! It is has been such a fun, crazy and exciting 4 months but I know this year is going to be full of so many new things that challenge me and make me grateful for everything the Lord has blessed me with!!

Best friend who is getting married
Part of our living room in our cozy apartment
[That paper chain was a count down until our boys came home from Thailand this summer... they were gone for 52 days!] 
High School Girls
New Friends and pool day! :)
North Carolina with John and Meg!
My very own desk in my office! :)
YAY Boyfriend
Learning to Cook new things!
In conclusion, I would say... life outside of Georgetown is pretty great! But, I do always love a trip back to the Phi Mu house to remind me of the wonderful and amazing 4 years I was able to spend there!

This picture is just for kicks and giggles (pun intended)
This sweet little nugget turned 2 years old this summer! He is just growing up so fast!!!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Who Knew?

Since my last post, I have been contemplating what my next blog was going to be about. I don't want this space to just be somewhere I come and rant about the happenings of my day [because not too many people care about the little itty bitty things I do every day...which at the moment isn't much]. I want this space to have meaning and to encourage, but also to be a place of reflection on the cool things I experience in this wonderful life the Lord has blessed me with.

Right before graduating college, I had a TON of freak-out-what-am-I-going-to-do-with-my-life moments. At the time, I didn't have a secure job, or any form of income. But, I knew I was moving to Lexington on June 1st and that the Lord would provide something for me to do.

Oh, what He had in store for me!! I was offered a summer internship position at Tates Creek Presbyterian Church with the youth group. I had been thinking that Youth Ministry was something I wanted to get involved with, and I am so very glad that I did. I have not ever had the opportunity to work with middle school or high school before my last semester of college until my friend Becky asked me to go on a spring retreat as a chaperon. We took about 60 students with us to Gatlinburg. What an experience!

However, after the retreat, I was hooked. I decided to commit my Wednesday nights to going to Youth Group and hanging out with the students I met on the retreat. I am so thankful that I did this. Even though I may not be sharing the Gospel or leading a Bible study, it was so good to go and hang out with the students.

We kicked off the summer with a mission trip to West Liberty with some of the high school students. I had never been to West Liberty, I had only seen pictures of the damage that was done by the tornado. While we were there we only worked on one mans house. Most of the outside damage had been repaired already, so our jobs were to completely clean out the inside of his home. We took out all the furniture and scrubbed the interior of his house down. The house was full dry wall dust, dust itself, and tons and tons of old furniture and belongings.

We not only got to serve in West Liberty; we got to play a little bit too. The first night we had a cook out with one of the students grandparents and the second night we were able to go to a swimming pool and just cool off from a long day in the sun. This was a great time for me to sit down with some of the girls in the youth and just talk to them!

After this retreat, youth group meetings continued and relationships were beginning to form. Mid-July we had a [semi] middle school retreat at the Gorge. This consisted of about 6 middle schoolers and the rest were in high school just along for the ride. This retreat was so much fun! We had the entire cabin to ourselves [with the exception of maybe 2 or 3 people]. We played tons of game [mafia, pig, and tons of bonding games], we went hiking, and rock jumping and spent time in the Word together. What a sweet little retreat.

However, as the summer came to a close, I found a full-time job and had to make the decision to stay an intern through the fall or just volunteer my time whenever I could. So, volunteering it would be. But I have to say that I don't regret my decision at all. I still get to see the students at church on Sundays as well as Wednesday night youth group. This past Wednesday night we had 97 students at Youth Group. Oh, what an amazing sight it was to see! We had a huge kick-off with cotton candy, sno cones, lots of sugar and worship. Here are a few pictures of that night!

David's hand was COVERED in cotton candy!

Sweet Emma and Susanna! 
 Love these sweet souls
 The love of a two-year old

 Precious Lola

The most disgusting game!

97 middle school and high school students praising Jesus!

I am so excited to see what the Lord continues to do through their lives!