Wednesday, April 29, 2009


New Template, Shout Out to Mom, Swine Flu, Among Other Things

I recently (i.e. earlier this week) entered an "updating" phase of life. One of the things I updated was the layout of my blog! Gone are the dark and dreary days of old. I also have some fun background music now! These changes elicited the following email from my dear mother:

Hi Daughter,
What have you done to your blog????? I think I like the colors it sure is bright..and I think suits you better. Oh. The music that starts up when I click on it is nice too. I have left it on in the back ground.
Love you sweetie,

It first I thought she was mad, but then I realized I think she likes it better than the old drab blog. Hi Mom. Glad you like it! Maybe next time I'm home I'll teach you how to leave comments! Love you!

As you may have heard, there's a bit of a flu going around. . . of the swine variety. This particular strand has been a bit lethal in Mexico and has officially claimed one life in Texas. (I will point out, that New York has had more confirmed cases than Texas, so don't freak out too much). Baylor's staying on top of it, and we have a webpage dedicated to it, just in case it hits Waco (which it hasn't).

This of course isn't helping the fact that I have been feeling a little under the weather the last couple of days. Yesterday I nearly choked on my own breath during a VP Candidate presentation and made quite the scene. Today I woke up with a splitting headache. Don't worry though- no fever, or other flu symptoms. Stay away little piggies.

It's really hard to believe that my first full academic year at Baylor is coming to a close. This week marks the last full week of class. Last week we had Diadeloso (Day of the Bear in Spanish). The next to last Thursday of Spring Classes Baylor cancels class, let's employees off at noon and there is a huge party. It was a blast! It was sunny, 80-90 degrees outside and a perfect day for concerts, dog shows, huge Tug-o-War competitions (seriously. HUGE). I entered Tuck in the Dia Dog Show and we had a great time. He kind of did a trick on the stage, but got distracted by another dog and the crowd simultaneously saying, "ahhhh" at him. He didn't win, but I am convinced that next year is our year! (Yes, I am a dog-show parent, but he doesn't mind!)

Spending all day outside I got a lot of sun (and of course, I didn't wear sunscreen. Oops). But, This one hasn't peeled, so I think I might actually get a bit of a tan this year! That will be quite the first. This summer I plan to spend quality time by the pool with friends, Tuck and a good book. I just have to find a swim suit first.

Before I get there though, I have to make it through the rest of the year. It seems that life picks up a bit between now and next week, and then for closing of course. Today's my last day with my CL Leadership Class- Having them has been a blast. I'm baking some cookies to celebrate our semester and looking forward to our time together. It's actually about time to head out to class! Enjoy the bright colors and background music!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Oh How I Needed This:

Today I ran across this paragraph while preparing for my final Captivating book study with my girls.

...And the world simply uses people, then spits them out when they are worn out and no longer "on top of their game." Our Enemy despises relationship, hates love in any form, fears its redemptive power. This is why God sent Eve. Women are needed to protect relationships, bring them back to center stage where they belong. You might at times feel like the only one who cares. But as women we must hang onto this- that because of the Trinity, relationship is the most important thing in the universe. Let us not give way or yield our intuitive sense of the importance of relationship for anything...

You have an irreplaceable role in your relationships. No one can be to the people in your life who you can be to them. No one can offer what you can offer. There are many things God calls us to do, but loving well always comes first. And don't your relationships feel opposed? Of course. They must be fought for... You have been sent by the Trinity on behalf of love, of relationships. Fight for them.
-Captivating, pp 209-210

No wonder I’m emotionally exhausted.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Scared the S*&%. . .

Out of my poor Tuck! We had some really bad thunderstorms come through Waco this morning while I was in a meeting. Tuck was home alone, and terrified. Apparently he is scared to death of storms and scratches relentlessly at the door to get out. Apparently, he also literally had the S*&% scared out of him this morning. Literally.

I couldn't help but laugh. Poor Tuck was terrified of both the storm and of me. You should have seen his face. I chose to offer him some grace and post a photo of it online.

BUT, he wasn't completely alone today. He had his new Easter Present:

My parents mailed a blanket for the Dog for Easter. The put a few pieces of candy in there for me, but most of the box was this really soft microplush throw blanket. It was labeled "For Tuck, the Granddog". Tuck's Grand People chose well- he's been sleeping on it most of the time since!

Seattle and Portland!

It's been a while since I posted an update. Part of that is the fact that life has been clipping along at a fast rate, and the other part is that I spent 10 days exploring the Pacific Northwest. I've never been to the Northwest, and I really enjoyed my trip. After this trip, I only have 16 states left to visit until I have been to them ALL!!

Seattle was the first stop for the NASPA conference. This is a national conference for Student Affairs professionals and was 7 days of sessions, volunteering and "networking".

The trip started at 3 a.m. when Shannon and I drove from Waco to Austin to catch an early morning flight. The flight from Austin to Houston was short and uneventful. Then we flew from Houston to Seattle- a 4 hours and 45 minute flight. This flight was far more interesting. I was in the window seat, getting ready for take off and an almost 5 hour nap, when the lady in the middle seat asked to put her head on my shoulder. I was completely taken aback and awkwardly agreed. The oddity of that situation prevented my sleeping for a while and I got excited when she and the guy on the end both were awake at the same time. (This was about an hour and a half into the flight.) I climbed my way over them to go to the bathroom. For some reason, when i was finished, the flight attendants wouldn't let me go back to my seat. They said there was a spill and I couldn't go back until it was cleaned up. When I got back to my seat, I discovered the lady in the middle had spilled her in-flight breakfast on my seat. . . Total Cereal. That made the rest of the flight much, much longer.

The conference was spectacular. I spent a few days volunteering at The Placement Exchange, both for the conference and for Baylor. When the conference started, I really enjoyed the sessions that I attended and had a great time visiting with old friends and colleagues.

I also made time to see some of the sights in Seattle. We went to Pikes Place Market along the Puget Sound. This is the home of the Pikes Place Fish Market- a fish stand where the employees have a blast throwing fish around and entertaining their customers. If you've ever heard of the FISH! Philosophy, this stand is the inspiration.

Additionally, PIkes Place is home to the first Starbucks. Of course, we made sure to go there. Now, I am not the biggest fan of Starbucks coffee, but they started a movement of which I am a willing participant. The first Starbucks is small and plain. They are currently renovating it, so there are about 4 seats at a window bar. The coffee tasted just like it does at every other Starbucks, but the staff were really friendly!!

One of my life goals is to go to all the World's Fair sites and visit the buildings that were built for the fairs. I was able to visit the Space Needle while I was there too. We went on a day that was mostly clear so we were able to see the Cascade and Olympic Mountain Ranges as well as the Puget Sound.

Here's a slide show of my time in Seattle:

Seattle Slideshow

After the conference ended, my friend Shannon and I took a train ride to Portland to stay with her mom and sister who live there. We were joined on the train by a couple of our friends who used to work at Baylor. Drew works at Reed College in Portand now, and Matt was going to spend a few days with him. The trip took about three and a half hours and was beautiful ride.

While in Portland we went hiking near Maltnomah Falls in the Columbia River Gorge. It was cold, but absolutely beautiful. Unfortunately most of the path to the top of Maltnomah was covered in ice past the bridge, so we did not get to climb to the top. We explored another set of water falls before driving along the scenic route to take some great pictures. Along the way out to Malnomah, we encountered a flat tire on the interstate. Luckily we had Matt with us, so the stop only added 10 minutes to our time.

While in Portland we went to see "Wicked" the musical which was a blast! One night my friends Laura and Brian met us in Portland for dinner. This was after we visited Powell's Bookstore in downtown Portland. Powell's is a four story talk bookstore that takes the entire city block. I could have spent hours in that store, but only got to spend about 45 minutes.

Saturday we went to the Pacific Ocean. This was my first time visiting it. Unfortunately, this was the only day it Portland that it rained. So, we didn't spend much time at the beach but took a nice scenic drive. We ate at Mo's, a famous reastuarant on the beach for clam chowder. Next we headed to Tillamook Cheese factory to walk around, eat some cheese and ice cream! It was a fun day of driving around the Oregon Coast and an awesome way to finish out the trip.

Here's a slide show of our adventures in Portland:

Portland Slideshide

Sunday, April 5, 2009

I'm Giddy about Esther.

I recently joined a women's BIble Study group and we are working through Beth Moore's latest study titled: "Esther: It's Tough Being a Woman". I have always loved Beth Moore, but I am SO excited about this study. I started on the workbook tonight and let me just tell you why I am almost giddy with a few quotes:

When we trust our lives to the hand and pen of an unseen but ever-present God, He will write our lives into His story and every last one of them will turn out to be a great read. With a grand ending. And not just in spike of those catastrophes. Often because of them.
-Day One: Page 14

We can count on some drama {in Esther}, however, and if you have my kind of taste, that's your kind of fun anyway.
-Day Two: Page 14

I strongly recommend this study, and I'm only on Day Three! Click on the picture to order it on Amazon!

Soundtrack of My Life

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