Friday, January 27, 2006


For the sake of my blog name, I’ve decided to occasionally list five things that I love.

I love going coatless in January!

I love Cookies and Cream granola bars. . amazing!

I love the hot tub!

I love that my sister misses me even though I’ve only been gone a few days.

I love Fridays!


L (of AMC) has a brother who we’ll call Simon. I met him just a few days after I met AMC. I actually worked for AMC a year and a half ago, and so did he. Hence, he too, became my friend. He lived with AMC so every time I would hang out with them, he would, too. It was awkward when I realized he liked me and he tried to pay for my meal a few times, etc. I just played dumb. This went on for quite awhile. I tried dropping hints and even saying something to AMC (I knew they were hopeful). Eventually he got the message and we carried on as friends.

And then he met her. Actually he’d known her for a long time, but she had been married. Not anymore. And she wanted him. So she went after him and got him. We all knew this was a bad deal. We asked him about her and she didn’t have the same values he did. They didn’t see eye-to-eye on the most important thing. But he dated her anyway. And ever since he hasn’t been as friendly or as talkative to AMC or I. She’s not friendly either. She hasn’t made efforts to get to know his family or friends. Yet he doesn’t like her friends, either. One night we had a get-together with a group of friends and they completely excluded themselves. And then there’s the jealousy factor. On both sides. They’re both so paranoid about each other. They once got in a fight because she saw that he had called me (to tell me he wouldn’t be at Choir that night and to tell our director).

Sooo, when I called him last night . . five times in a row . . that probably didn’t go over too well. Hehe. But I was scared. I was alone in AMC’s house, which hadn’t bothered me all week until last night. Last night it was sooo windy and Jewel kept growling because she thought she heard something. I thought it was just the TV. When I let the dogs outside again, I noticed that the sliding screen door was shut. And I did not shut it . . . I was positive. The movie I’d just watched had me a little anxious so I was probably extra paranoid. But sometimes I think you can never be too careful. So I called him. He’s the only guy I know who lives close by. I knew he wouldn’t answer. I knew I’d have to keep calling to get him to see the urgency of the matter. So I literally called five times. Then he called me back . . finally. He sounded really annoyed. I explained the situation and he told me the wind probably blew the screen door shut. This made me feel better, but I was still a little nervous. I knew he’d really be ticked if I asked him to come check the place out, so I just made him stay on the phone while I went into each room. But he sounded so inconvenienced by the whole thing. I mean I could’ve died. I almost wished someone would’ve been in the house just so he would feel bad. He was never this rude before . . never. In fact, he would’ve offered to come over if it hadn’t been for HER. I was tempted to make some smart-mouth comment to him on phone, but I refrained. I want to be happy for him, because he’s my friend, but he’s really gotten himself into a mess. I hope he comes to his senses soon (but it’s been a year already).

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Just Me & the TV

This week, AMC’s big widescreen TV has sucked me in. I only planned on maybe watching for a half hour/hour tops each night. I never watch TV, so I thought I’d treat myself. Monday night, BF & I Tivo’d “The Bachelor” and watched for two hours. I’m hooked again and I plan on watching religiously all season. What’s not to love? The pretty girls, the crazy girls, the catty girls, and how they all try to convince Mr. Right that they're the one for him . . it really is pathetic, but oh so fun to watch. The bachelor’s even pretty good-looking – more so than most of them have been. Tuesday night I watched the best “Law and Order: SVU” episode I’ve ever seen. My eyes were glued to the screen. Last night, I curled up on the comfy leather sofa to see what was on and I ran across “Lost”, which I’ve heard a lot about. I got sucked in within the first 10 seconds! I loved it. I’m going to be so tempted to watch it on Wednesdays now. Maybe this is the reason I stepped down from Choir. After “Lost” I found “Karate Kid” on! It’s has to have been over ten years since I’ve seen that movie. It used to be my favorite when I was about 10. I can remember being torn between buying “Land Before Time” and “Karate Kid” with a Christmas gift certificate.

The question is now: What’s on tonight??

R.C. in looser fitting jeans!

It's finally here . . a picture of R.C. And now the world can see why Sweet Sarah's worries about his mojo are wasted on me.

*Either I was doing a different dance in this picture or I hadn't quite caught on yet. Doh!

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Out They Go

I finally heeded the advice of my dentist . . the advice he gave me at least three years ago . . "You need to get your wisdom teeth out." I've been in denial ever since. In high school, he once mentioned that they weren't moving and may never present a problem. . buuut he changed his story a few years later and I just didn't want to believe him. Lately, I've noticed some sensitivity back there and have even felt a molar surfacing . . unevenly! Even if there was zero pain, I don't want my other teeth crowding to make room for these intruders. . I didn't have braces twice for nothing! Over the holidays, my cousin had hers out and told me a story about a girl my age whose teeth had surfaced and taken root so deep that she lost all feeling in her bottom front teeth . . for good! I think that was my breaking point . . it had to be done.

Today I met with my oral surgeon who ended up being very personable and even funny (and, may I add, good-looking). He made me almost look forward to coming in again, even if I will be incoherent for the whole procedure. I was in a hurry to get it over with, so I'm scheduled for a week from tomorrow. I'm not looking forward to having my whole weekend shot . . especially since I was hoping to go snow tubing. On the other hand, it will be nice to have a few days of yummy shakes and smoothies and lots of good movies. BF needs to get hers out, too, and ideally we would've liked to be able to veg out together all weekend, but I doubt she'll be able to schedule an appointment on such late notice.

'Til next week, I'll be looking forward to being free of the impending inconvenience.
This morning I made a very unimportant observation about myself . . . I am 24 years old and I still believe that donuts with sprinkles taste better than donuts without. If there had been 10 other donuts without sprinkles, I wouldn’t have even wanted to eat one.

Sunday, January 22, 2006


This morning in church, they played the "Can I Live" music video. It was a great video. They asked those of us who felt led to commit to praying for the unborn and for people who will protect the lives of the unborn to be put in places of leadership in our country.

Can I Live?
Nick Cannon

Yeah just think, just think
What if you could just, just blink yourself away. . . just, just wait, just pause for a second
Let me plead my case
Its the late 70's huh
You seventeen huh
And having me - that will ruin everything huh
It's alot of angels waiting for their wings
You see me in your sleep so you cant kill your dreams
Three hundred dollars - thats the price of living - what?
Mommy, I dont like this clinic
Hopefully you'll make the right decision
And dont go though with the knife incision
But it's hard to make the right move when you in high school
How you got to work all day and take night school
Hopping off da bus when the rain is pouring
What? you want morning sickness or the sickness of mourning?

I'll always be a part of you
Trust your soul, know it's always true
If I could talk, I'd say to you
I'll always be a part of you
Trust your soul, know its always true
If I could talk, I'd say to you

[Verse 2]
I'm a child of the king, ain't no need to go fear me
And I see the flowing tears, so I know that you hear me
When I move in your womb, that's me being scared
'Cause who knows what my future holds
Yo, the truth be told, you ain't told a soul
Yo, you ain't even showing, I'm just 2 months old
Through your clothes try to hide me, deny me, went up 3 sizes
Your pride got you lyin', sayin' it ain't nothin' but a migraine
It ain't surprisin' you not tryin' to be in WIC food lines
Your friends look at you funny, but look at you mommy
That's a life inside - take a look at your tummy
What is becoming, ma, i'm Oprah bound
You can tell he's a star from the ultrasound
Our spirits connected, doors open now
Nothing but love and respect
Thanks for holding me down
She let me live...

[Chorus x2]

[Nick Talking]

Its upliftin' for real ya'll
I ain't passing no judgement, ain't making no decisions
I'm just telling ya'll my story
I love life
And I love my mother for giving me life
We all need to appreciate life
A strong woman that had to make a sacrifice
Thanks for listening
Thanks for listeningMa
Thanks for listening

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Good End to My Week and Start to My Weekend

The first week of my new position went well. I like it so much more than what I've been doing for 9 months. However, I still haven't fully transitioned and will be doing a little of both for a couple more weeks. Ugh! Although I enjoy it more, I still wonder if I'll grow restless again soon. I want to be a part of something I have more of an interest in. I want to reach my potential and I just don't see that happening here . . . but I know that it takes small steps to get there. This will be really good experience for me and I'm very thankful for that.

I'm happy that the weekend has arrived! Tonight I had the Fresh Start appreciation dinner. The food was delicious! It's so wonderful to hear about all the things God is doing in Fresh Start. It's not only being introduced to a great majority of the States, but it's also been introduced to 14 countries. So many people are learning how they can become whole and free in Christ and experience healing in their relationships and truly forgive others. I love hearing people's testimonies!!

AMC has asked me to dog-sit/house-sit for them this week. It won't be fun packing up my stuff to stay all week, but it will be very fun hanging out with the 3 dogs, using their exercise machines, their hot tub, their Tivo and HDTv, and their king sized bed. I'm also excited to have a lot of alone time to spend with God, pray, etc. I think it will be very refreshing. And I'll save a lot on gas being closer to work.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Pant Dilemma

I hate deciding what to wear in the mornings. I stand there, freezing in my icebox of a room, donning my pink furry slippers and an oversized t-shirt . . maybe pajama pants if I wasn’t too lazy to put them on the night before. I stand, just staring at my shelves of clothing, closet of clothing, and piles of clothing. “First of all, what looks easy?”, I ask myself. What isn’t wrinkled and doesn’t require ironing or even ‘fluffing’ in the dryer? The answer to that question is probably less than half of what I own. I vow to myself each morning that on that very evening I will come straight home for the sole purpose of organizing my stuff and maybe even camping out in front of the TV and just ironing anything that needs it. Hard to believe I hate messes, because it seems that my room is the epitome of messiness. But really, I can’t stand them. That’s why, other than sleeping, I easily spend less than 10 minutes a day in there.

Anyway, back to my morning wardrobe dilemma . . . First, I select a shirt/sweater. . something I feel that I could pull off pretty effortlessly (“pull off” as in slip on and look decent in). Then, I decide which pairs of pants would look nice with that shirt. Mind you, I can’t have worn these pants yet that week, which makes the decision harder. If the only pair of pants that looks good with Chosen Sweater is the pair I wore two days ago, I have to pick a different sweater. This morning, the pants that I knew would look best were wadded up in the bottom of a laundry basket in the utility room. Super! I got to iron today. But, it wasn’t as simple as that, because The Pants were of such a material that they had to be turned inside out and ironed on low heat. Low heat just doesn’t cut it with these pants. They’re difficult. They’re made of thick material. Not to mention that they’re tailored cargo pants, so ironing the wrinkled pockets from inside the pants is a real chore.

After spending a good fraction of the time I’d allotted for getting ready that morning ironing, I went back to my room to put on the outfit. Other than the fact that my pants are about a millimeter away from not fitting around my waistline, I had no shoes to go with them! This is pretty amazing considering how many pairs I do own. The problem was that my pants are not long enough to be worn with heels and I don’t have any brown flats. Yet, I was in such a hurry that I am now wearing these pants with heels . . and, let me tell you, folks, I am embarrassed for myself. It could be worse, but it’s bad enough that I’m just not comfortable walking anywhere . . especially since I have mules on and my pants have even risen high enough to get stuck under my foot. If only I would’ve had another pair of pants that looked good with this sweater!

This pant dilemma today caused me to remember a conversation I had with BF the other day right outside the Banana Republic fitting room. We were shopping the fabulous indoor sidewalk sale and I found the cutest black pants in my size. . only to learn that BF had them already! Ah! I don’t want to copy, but it’s not like we’re together very much so no one would know but us. She said I could get them, but I’m still not sure if she really meant it. It’s just something you say because you know it isn’t that big a deal, but for some reason it kinda matters to you. You want to be an individual. You’d like to believe that you’re the only person in town with those pants - at least the only person you know. For some reason, when she said, “What are you trying on?”, I was almost nervous to turn around and show her for fear she’d say that she had them already. After I’d tried them on and they fit like a glove, she asked if I was going to get them. If you could’ve seen the inner struggle that was going on inside of me . . . I want to be sensitive to BF, but perhaps she really doesn’t care. After all, it is just pants, not a unique shirt or shoes. I think I made some comment to the effect of “I just knew you’d say you had them. You have so many pairs of pants”. To which she responded, “I could never have as many pairs of pants as you, Laurs.” Let’s just stop right there, because it makes no difference BUT that statement is completely untrue. I even was pathetic enough to try and list off my different colors/styles of pants just to prove I didn’t have that many pairs. BF said,

"I don't even have a pair of khakis."

"Yes you do; that darker khaki pair. I don't have a pair of corduroys."

"Neither do I."

"Yes, you do, the blue-gray pair."

You see, the difference between BF & I is that I announce every time I go shopping and make a purchase. She just shows up wearing something really cute or I see it hanging in her closet. So, it would appear that I have more, but I really don’t. I bet BF would've had more than one options to go with my sweater this morning.

By the way, BF, I love you . . . and I love your new Frye mules ;)

And I don't care how many pairs of pants you have.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Celebrating another baby boy

Today was J's shower. The hostesses with the mostesses (as J called them) did a great job of decorating, etc. It was beautiful. A good number of people came and we had a lot of laughs.

We each got a chance to guess what Baby Boy's name was. I had two guesses (knowing the first letter of his name) and she said that one of them was right, but she wasn't going to reveal which one. Later on, we (in the above pic) were staying after chatting, etc, and as we're headed down the sairs, J saw Baby Triston's sweater and said she needed more sweaters (meaning for Baby Boy). Her good friend, one of the few who knew Baby's name, said, "You mean, for _____?" Doh! She clapped her hand over her mouth and started saying how sorry she was, while the rest of us stopped and kinda fell down/sat down on the stairs laughing and in disbelief. I mean, it was supposed to be such a suspenseful thing and then, boom!, we all knew. J said it wasn't that big of a deal to her, but I'm sure she was a little disappointed. It was funny, though.

M brought her little boy along, so he and Triston stayed downstairs with their daddies while the shower was going on.

Here's a shocker. Triston (L) is going to be turning 1 in two weeks. Benjamin (R) is 6 1/2 months old. Now, which baby looks bigger? All I know is they're both adorable!

Movin' On Up

I wrote a post last night, but removed it 9 hours later. I want to write about it, but it's just too risky.

What I can say, though, is that I got promoted yesterday. It was a big surprise, but a pleasant one. I've wanted this position since I started with this company 9 months ago. I had to wait 6 months to apply for it. I applied after 8 when it became available and they hired externally - (I didn't get that, because you have to know how everything works in order to do this job and heck, I still don't know how everything works). BUT, they're hiring another person for the position and they just called me in and asked me if I was still interested. Yay!

With this job comes a nice pay increase, some travel, and a nice change of pace from what I have been doing. And I won't need much training before stepping into it. In fact, I start on Monday. It really is perfect timing, because I was starting to get a little burnt out with what I was doing.

Now I know I mentioned an Opportunity in a previous post, but this position isn't what I was talking about. That's all I'll say about that right now.

I've gotta get to bed. I really want to make it to church tomorrow morning and if I go to bed now, I can make the 11:30 service. After that, I have another baby shower for one of my friends. I'll know quite a few girls there, so it'll be really fun. . Can't wait!

Thursday, January 12, 2006

It must be another result of the Curse

Is it just me or are women not supposed to be able to grow a mustache? I, for one, don’t even think we’re really supposed to grow hair in our armpits, but I digress. Dark hair anywhere other than the human head . . . is definitely a masculine thing. Last time I looked, I was still a female . . AND I was still a blonde. I don’t even like mustaches on men let alone myself!

Perhaps I’m exaggerating about the mustache thing, but several dark hairs most definitely make their home on my top lip. And they are not welcome there! Keeping this a secret from the rest of the world has become one of the greatest inconveniences of my young adult life.

My first attempt at keeping it under wraps was buying bleach sold for the very purpose of hiding those pesky dark hairs. But the only thing worse than a few dark hairs is an entire lip full of bleach blonde hair! I’m not going for the Paris Hilton look on any part of my body.

Some may not understand the complexity of the situation. Why not just buy one of those do-it-yourself at-home wax kits? I, for one, am not brave enough to inflict pain upon myself. . . I have to pay someone to do that. It’s not even as simple as dropping by a random salon and letting any esthetician take care of the problem. There are different prices, different products, and different techniques.

My favorite esthetician EVER is also the least expensive, because aside from managing a salon, she also does it out of her home and only charges half price. BUT, in addition to managing a salon, she’s also a nurse, an Arbonne rep, and a single mom. And when the ‘stache comes, there’s just not time to try to schedule an appointment with her. I can’t wait that long! But, oh, she uses the best wax, the best strips, and the best technique. She squeals with joy each time she rips the hair from my face. “Look! Look at all those blood bulbs. We ruined a bunch of follicles!” At first, the word “ruined”, in association with my skin, gave me a big scare until I realized it meant those hairs were gone forever!! But, believe it or not, only SHE has been able to ruin my follicles with her awesome hair-ripping technique.

My second favorite esthetician, who works at a well-known chain salon here in O-town, was actually recommended to me by my beauty-conscious cousin, Joy. (Joy, however, only needs her brows waxed . . no fair!) I like this girl because she’s such a perfectionist and feels strongly about having no hair left behind! She’s also very sweet and talkative and, as all women know, your hair dresser and esthetician just HAVE to be conversational. But, when it comes to ruining follicles – no-can-do.

The last wax appointment I had was an emergency appointment. When I couldn’t bear to look at myself in the GAP fitting room mirrors, I walked straight to the nearest salon across the way at the outdoor mall. I met the cheeriest, most stylish esthetician ever and I thought our relationship could be promising. It being the same chain salon my SFE worked for, I figured the price would be the same. . . Not only was I wrong about the price – it was 6 dollars more, making it $30! – but she gave me the Orange County Choppers wax! Do I look like I have the mustache of Paul Sr.? Then WHY would you wax that part of my face?? It looked so odd for the longest time. (You know when your good friend is saying, “What’s on your face? It looks wet” because there is no hair there, you have a problem!)

It has suddenly grown back and the last several days have been extremely painful. Having dark hairs scream at you day after day doesn’t do much for your self-esteem. Who cares if my make-up is done and my hair looks nice when I’m bearing such a strong resemblance to my father!

I need to make an appointment and FAST!

**Update 1/14: I have an appointment today with 2nd favorite - yay!

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Raunchy Cowboy

Sweet Sarah showed up not long after I did. We stood by the door and waited for RC (Raunchy Cowboy) to get there –our dance instructor. I’m calling him Raunchy Cowboy (RC) because that’s the name of his favorite line dance where he gets to move his hips around as much as is humanly possible. Sweet Sarah once told me, while blushing, “I thought RC stood for Rosy Cheeks, not Raunchy Cowboy”. She is the mother of the really bad dancer who, by the way, hasn’t come since then. Darn!

Each week, she comes up to me with The Look – it’s a look I’m no stranger to – it’s the look that says, “I want you to be my daughter-in-law”. The Look makes you feel extremely flattered, yet slightly uncomfortable, while occasionally wanting to scream “Leeet goooo; it's not gonna happen”. She always mentions her son and fishes for something, anything from me that she can go tell him to encourage him to come back, because "he thinks you don't want him to come back". I try hard to not make any comment that if relayed to him would ever prompt him to return.

This week, Sweet Sarah said she had something she just had to tell me. It was about RC. She said she was worried sick about me and couldn’t sleep this week. She said RC was living with another girl in the group, but liked to get around. “I’ve never met anyone like him in all my 61 years.” She’d seen four marriages fall apart throughout the course of a couple years and every one of the women had had a fling with RC. Some of them stopped coming; some still came, seemingly unbothered that RC went on to the next woman.

“How could they keep coming? Wouldn’t they feel awkward?” I asked.

“It’s the power of the dance,” she whispered. “I just wanted you to know. I want you to be careful.”

I could tell there was something about RC. . the way he spoke, the way he moved, and the way he’d walk by and put his hands on my hips to move me aside and “excuse himself” . . ew. I knew he was a womanizer. I love dancing with him, because he’s so good at it . . and a great teacher. . but that’s it!

I laughed. “You don’t have to worry about me, Sarah. For one thing, he’s OLD (as in probably early 40s). And he’s not attractive. And he’s not refined! I don’t know how he gets so many women.”

She leaned a little closer to me and whispered again,

“It’s his mojo”.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Chilly/Chili Night

Last night I passed up the extra $20-30 bucks I would’ve made had I stayed after for a work meeting. It wasn’t mandatory and my co-worker said she’d take notes for me and since she loves taking notes so much, I didn’t want to rob her of that. Plus, I just wanted to go home. I didn’t know what I’d do when I got there, but I just wanted to go home.
And I’m so glad I did, because I had such a great night.

I found my sister home alone, starting to make chili in the kitchen, and decided, since it wouldn’t be ready for awhile, to go for a jog. . . something I hadn’t done since . . crap, I don’t even remember. Temps were in the 30s so I needed to dress appropriately. I dug through my drawer for the Cuddle Duds. Yes, the Cuddle Duds. I feel so attractive when I wear them. In fact, one of my embarrassing moments involves them. In college, I loooved winter time more than usual, because I got to walk around campus in sub-zero temps and then roast once I got to class (definitely being sarcastic). It was so cold that I was actually excited about finding the Cuddle Duds in my stocking one Christmas. I wore them countless times to class. Usually they’d be under sweatpants and a sweatshirt, but one particular day I wore them with jeans. My professor was handing back papers and I lifted up out of my seat and reached forward to grab them only to realize that my sweater had risen above my pantline and my high-rise Cuddle Duds were there for all the class to see! (if anyone was looking). I felt my cheeks flush and I got warm all over. I wanted to stand, turn around, and make a public declaration that “I, Laura ________, do not wear granny panties with an elastic waistband!” But I do wear Cuddle Duds. And last night I also wore the only stocking cap I could find, which is literally from the 70s and has one of those multi-colored balls on top. . . Kinda cute in a retro sort of way.

Jogging felt great . . so refreshing. When the chili still wasn’t ready after I got home, I pulled out my Ball and did the entire sheet of recommended exercises that filled up about half of my living room. I finished my workout by putting in The Firm DVD for abs that I’ve done once since buying it almost a year ago. It says you’re guaranteed visible results in 10 workouts and I plan to put it to the test.

I ended my night by renting “Must Love Dogs” which I hadn’t seen yet. It was cute, but is it just me, or do movies lately seem to skip over the whole relationship development thing? It’s like, “We laughed together once and you said something sweet to me on our first date and I’m crazy attracted to you, so let’s have sex, because this must be love.” I just love the movies where you feel like you got to kinda watch them fall in love a little bit.

One of my favorite lines from the movie, though, was: “He’s emotional and he likes to talk . . .This is a mythical figure, Sarah.” I’m not sure why I liked it so much; I’ve dated a mythical figure myself.

Work sucks. I’m always such an optimist about work, but we have a new program we’re using and none of us are big fans of it. Plus, I’m thinking about that opportunity I wrote about last week. I just need to find out what’s going to happen. I’ve been biting my nails like crazy - I couldn’t even open the shampoo lid today in the shower. I don’t want it to happen if it’s not going to be a good thing, but I really hope it could be a good thing and happen!! I want to break out of the ordinary . . at least for a little while.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Change is in the air

I did end up going to Lincoln Friday night . . and having a great time! The band, Blackwater, was so good. We were planning on staying ‘til 11 (because of the hour drive), but lost track of time and didn’t leave ‘til 12:30 a.m. “We” meaning my uncle and I. I’ve been going with him to all of these events. He’s really good at two-stepping, which we (sadly) don’t do on Tuesday nights, but did a lot of on Friday. Seriously, the Kickers are like a big, happy family. Everyone dances with everyone . . . and everyone is willing to teach the person that hasn’t caught on yet . . .namely, Me, because everyone else has been going a lot longer than I have.

My Saturday was a very eventful day. I had my cousin’s graduation party, and it was fun to see some people there that I hadn’t seen in awhile. I’m so excited for her; she’s graduated early and is headed to Bolivia for a few months to go to language school before starting college. I often wish I would’ve done that.

I got to see two pregnant friends Saturday who I’ve only talked to since they’ve been showing. It was so great to be able to see them so far along. One friend is due next month, and I went to her shower and was able to see her home and the baby’s room that they’re having painted with a Noah’s Ark theme.

That evening, I went out to dinner with the two girls I’ve been friends with the longest – my old best friend, and first Christian friend, Kristen, and our friend Sarah, who I met in junior high. Kristen is six and a half months along and looks adorable. Sarah and her husband just celebrated their one year anniversary and bought their first home with four bedrooms and three bathrooms! It’s fun, yet crazy, to watch my friends grow up and start their own families. Because I’m not at the same place yet, it’s strange to imagine being there. I told them I’m having so much fun just being single and doing things I probably won’t do when I’m married. They just smiled and told me I won’t care about doing those things once I meet “him”. It’s true, but who knows when that will be, so I may as well live it up while I can. . .

At church, it seems the theme has been newness and change, and I do have a sense that this year will be a big year. I have no idea what that means for me. I am sometimes hesitant to dream big, but then I remember that if I love the Lord, it’s He that places the dreams in my heart and He that most wants to see them come true. And if I dream for anything that doesn’t happen or happens differently than I had hoped, it will only be better.

“. . Then you will know that I am the Lord . . those who hope in me will not be disappointed . . “ Isaiah 49:23

Friday, January 06, 2006

I Keep on Kickin' It

Last night, I went with the Country Kickers to do a demo for a large group of mentally handicapped kids. And what an audience! They, of course, loved our performance, and some of them would get up and come dance amongst us, while their peers cheered them on. Each time one of them would come up to meet one of us, they would be sure to wish us a “Happy New Year”. Very cute. I love watching their childlike joy. I love how some of them just get up and dance not caring what others think. Something I think many of us would like to be able to do.

As I was dancing a couples’ dance with another Kicker, a very large boy came up and grabbed ahold of my arm with a very firm grip and attempted to drag me away to dance with him while professing his love for me. Normally I wouldn’t mind, but he was a little frightening . . ok, he was very frightening! He was like a scruffy, drooling, leering ogre (a nice ogre, I'm sure, like Shrek :) and had two footlong hairs growing out of his chin! It made me feel bad for him and think to myself . . . Why don’t his parents/caretakers help him out a bit in the cleanliness department? I mean, how hard is it to just cut those hairs, trim that “beard”, wipe the leftover mustard from the corners of his mouth? But I really cannot make statements about “how hard is it” when it would obviously be an enormous challenge to care for someone . . . something that I know nothing about.

It was really fun doing the demo, though, and watching everyone enjoy it. It was a great first demo, because I probably only remembered a couple of the dances, but no one cared that I was staring at everyone’s feet and turning around in circles most of the time. I really don’t want to see the video of that!

Afterward, we went to Country Cosmic Bowling and I kicked everyone’s butt with my score of 119 . . don't know how, because I never bowl! One of the songs we dance to started playing, so a bunch of Kickers went to the back and danced. They drew quite an audience, too. People were taking pictures with their camera phones and everything. They’re a fun group to hang out with . . . they know how to have a good time.

I may be putting on my boots tonight, too, and heading to Lincoln with everyone to go to Coyote Willy’s. Didn’t really expect to be getting so involved in this line-dancing thing . . . but I’m lovin’ it so far!

Thursday, January 05, 2006

One down

I'm proud to announce that one of my resolutions for 2006 has already been accomplished . . but it had nothing to do with my own determination or self-discipline.

My resume looks good. . . as opposed to looking like crap as it has for so long (at least according to Me, my biggest critic).

I received a phone call yesterday about a great opportunity and, after talking to a couple of people, learned I'd need to send my resume . . today!! I panicked. I immediately contacted the one person I knew who actually enjoys putting a resume together and offered her $50 to fix mine. I was desperate! Fortunately, she couldn't do it . . because I ended up e-mailing to my cousin in Florida and she made it look great . . for free!

So regardless of what happens with this opportunity, I have just saved myself a lot of guilt over procrastination and a lot of time that I would've spent trying to fix it myself to no avail . . and when all it needed was a few tweaks and a little re-formatting.

One goal down, nine to go!

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Good-bye '05, Hello '06

I was so excited to go be social on New Year's Eve, but it didn't turn out quite as I had hoped . . . however, I'm not at all disappointed.

After reading about Girl's filet mignon, I was really craving steak and determined to treat myself . . I just didn't have anyone to go with. Fortunately, after an afternoon spent playing games with "Indiana cousins", Uptown Grandma announced that they were having steak for dinner. Since it was nearly 6 o'clock and I was still wearing no make-up and an oversized sweatshirt, I decided to just stay and enjoy my cousins a while longer . . . and some delicious free food. Dinner was so yummy - steak, salad, baked potatoes, jello w/ bananas, and garlic bread. My cousins are so sweet and so much fun. We all went around the table to shared 2005 highlights and desires for 2006. I'm so glad I stayed.

BF went down to the French Cafe in the Old Market in Omaha for an elaborate meal with her family, but agreed to meet up with me for dessert at Melting Pot. It was sooo good. We got the Milk Chocolate S'mores fondue. We stayed and chatted and welcomed in the new year, toasting with our refreshing ice cold waters :) We, too, reflected on highlights of this last year and shared our hopes for this year.

After saying good-night to BF, I went over to T's with S and her sister, but T was in a bad mood after facing a little "girl rejection" that night, so he wasn't his usual self. And there weren't too many other people there, so we called it a night around 2:30.

I'm glad to see 2005 go. It wasn't a bad year, but not one of the more significant ones I've had. I'm hoping 2006 will be a bit more eventful. However, 2005 was a good year.

For one thing, the Lord completed a wonderful work in my heart at the beginning of the year which meant I was able to enjoy this entire year feeling totally alive and whole again. Thank you, Jesus!

This year was a year of dancing . . not just in my heart, but literally, as well. I wasn't happy to learn, two weeks into the spring semester, that I hadn't really just graduated and needed one more credit to get my diploma! But, it turned out to be a blessing, because I signed up for Social Dance class and had a great time learning many ballroom and latin dances, as well as lindyhop and jitterbug. I even performed for over 500 people at the Qwest Center! And I'm now line-dancing into the new year with the Country Kickers and having so much fun!

This year, I took my first "real job" and moved home at the same time, which is pretty ironic. Both have been great experiences, though. I've met some great people at my job and learned what field I'm not really interested in. I'm hoping to find something I'm much more suited for this coming year. I've enjoyed being at home with my family and living a little more of a slower-paced life not being in Omaha. I take back what I said about not ever wanting to live in F-town again. I think it will be tough to leave, because I'm pretty sure this time it will be for good.

I gained some new family members this year - a sister-in-law, a nephew, and a niece, as well as a couple of cousins. Something I never imagined happening a year ago.

I loved my trip to Table Rock Lake this summer. It was so refreshing! and the only vacation I took this year, which was a big jump from seven trips in 2004! I hope to do a lot more traveling this year.

Of course, being involved in Fresh Start has been great and I'm looking forward to starting another group of teen girls in about a week.

I've decided to take a break from church Choir indefinitely. It's been great being a part of such an awesome choir, though. I can't wait to be able to hear from the audience again!

Most importantly, this coming year, I just want to grow closer to the Lord. It may sound cliche, but I mean it. I want to experience more intimacy with Him and have more of His heart in me.

Here's to 2006! May it be full of life, passion, and purpose!