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Full Circle

I typically keep two live journals at a time.  Why?  I don’t know but it’s always cool to see how I flip back and forth between the two and how they line up when reading them. 


I recently went back to 2011.  2011 was about being open.  Being open to God and love - loving myself, being loved and loving others.  This year crazy things happened - including meeting the guy who would become my fiance.   Yesterday, my engagement came to an end and at service, the pastor talked about having an open heart, trust and vulnerability.  It was CRAZY!!!! lol  Of course he was talking about God but I couldn’t help relate it to relationships in general.  It was just crazy how I had just read a journal entry about telling God I’ll be open, met my fiance and the day it all ends, there’s a sermon about openness.  Gotta love Him! :)


I wish I could tell you about the sermon but what I’d say wouldn’t do it justice.  I will say it the title was, “Developing a Heart of Worship.”  Man, the connections this guy made with scripture was ridiculous.  I do feel it was timely (that’s pretty obvious considering the circumstances) because I’ve always struggled with not being so guarded and keeping people on the outside so it was like a reminder from God to maintain a soft side, even if it’s only for Him.

…Well…that’s all I got. I just wanted to share the irony of my Sunday.  It made me laugh. *shrugs*  Happy Monday, folks!

Adam’s Place

I love a good burger so when I heard a burger joint opened up in town I was  excited to try it out.  What sold me on the restaurant, more than the burgers, was the mission of this particular place.

Adam’s Place was started when a father, who working at a restaurant was told he could no longer bring his special needs son to work, decided to open a place dedicated to his son. Check out this clip: http://www.lex18.com/news/family-opens-up-adam-s-place-for-special-needs-son/. 
Touched by the love these parents have, even to the extent of shirts identifying “Adam’s Mom” and “Adam’s Dad,” I knew I had to visit one day.

I have been completely successful in cooking enough that I wouldn’t have to cook this week. Furthermore, I’ve been blessed enough to have been treated to places so my food was just sitting in the fridge waiting to be packaged for lunch.  Today I knew spaghetti was for dinner but it just didn’t seem entirely right.  I kept asking myself where I would eat and then I was reminded of Adam’s Place.  I instantly checked my bank account and mentally prepared for my trip - go home, change my clothes and head to Adam’s Place!

I called ahead of time to see if they had wi-fi so I can get some stuff done outside of the home.  When I arrived, there were two families in the place, one leaving, so I had plenty of places I could sit - of course I looked for a place with an outlet.  I found a nice booth and smiled.  Greeted at the door by a sign that reads, “Adam’s Place, Where Special People Matter,” was clearly evident as every family that came in since I’ve been sitting here has brought someone that is special needs.  The care and love displayed by all of the workers has been amazing to witness! Furthermore, the food was great.  It’s low-cost and tasty!

If you are ever in Berea, KY you should stop by Adam’s Place if not just to support this establishment by purchasing a dessert.  I have thoroughly enjoyed my experience here.  I will definitely be back but wanted to share this beautiful story with you all and those who do not yet know it exists.

Feel free to check out their facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Adams-Place/343144352473011

You may also check out their website: http://adamsplaceberea.net/about.html


Happy Thursday, folks!

What Do You Do?

My fiance and I have been visiting this church for about a month and about the second week we realized we hate the question, “What do you do?”  Everyone is super friendly and so we had met so many people and right after exchanging names, the next question would be, “What do you do?” 

One night he and I discussed how interesting it is how people associate your job with your identity.  Think about it - they learn our names and the next identifiable piece of information sought is our occupation.  Let me say, it’s not just this particular church, it’s people as a whole.  What you “do” is associated with how much money you make and where you fall into this world.  So, from that point, I am subconsciously identified as Marie, the (fill in job title here).

One day I was scrolling through facebook and saw this in my news feed.  I immediately sent it to my fiance exclaiming how awesome this was as it connected to what we were just talking about.  I even love the setting, - how it appears the guy in the suit is possibly grilling the person on the other side of the table, clearly two people who don’t know each other and the question is asked - but the information being sought isn’t the typical answer given. 

As a Christian, I believe it is my job to daily impact this world. To be a light, to leave a mark.  It would be great if the thing I do to make money and support myself (and soon-to-be family) lined up with that, but if it doesn’t, that’s ok…I’ll be a light there, too!  My job doesn’t define me but what I do daily, what I do when folks aren’t looking, my character is what defines me.  My lifestyle defines me. 

I once had lunch my freshman year with Dr. Larry Shinn, retired President of Berea College, who said, “You know, studies show that your generation will have seven different careers in your lifetime.”  Initially, I thought that was just crazy to say. I am going to be a pediatrician and change the youth one child at a time, how dare you tell me that won’t last…that I am going to be such a failure that I would change my career path seven different times!  As I went through college, and realized my true passion which was only a fragment of being a pediatrician, and how broad that passion is and how many different ways I could fulfill it, I was reminded of his words. Even now, I love my job but I am totally ready for something different - something similar, yet different.  I am ready to touch another group of people.. a group of people that I don’t come in contact with in my daily work. I’m ready even to be in a new state…to leave my mark there.  I am so much bigger than my job!

So, last Sunday, I met a new group of people and, inevitably, the question came and I responded differently.  I said, “Well, I live, eat, sleep, breathe, listen to people, minister to people, love…,” and the list went on.  They were all laughing, because I’m just goofy that way, but eventually, one of the ladies said, “So, are we supposed to guess where you work?” My fiance was standing on the sidelines cracking up, one because he’s always laughing at me, watching me interact with others, but two because he knew where I was going.  I smiled and then talked about the picture above.  They all listened intently but with a slight look of confusing until I got to the end and it was like a grand lightbulb moment.  My fiance and I already talked about how we were going to answer the question from then on but, seriously, I think my anticipation of the answer to follow the question will also change. 


What do you do for the world?  If someone was unemployed and homeless but helped develop some great technology for NASA or invented some product that helps our lives operate better like air conditioning, a refrigerator, lightbulb, etc., then it doesn’t matter that you’re currently unemployed, you’ve made a great contribution to the world and that’s what I am interested in.  My own personal self-check, has been, “Marie, what have you done for God today?”  Nothing else matters if I can’t answer that question.

Morning Challenge

I think many wake in the morning bogged down with what they have to do such as go to work, pay 10 bills with the fifteen cent in your pocket, take care of kids, whatever. I think it’s super simple to focus on the things we don’t exactly want to do or things we don’t particularly like about our lives.

Lately, I’ve found myself simply, and genuinely, grateful…just grateful.  This morning my prayer was to simply say Thank you for waking up in a bed, having electricity to iron my clothes, hot water to shower in, food for breakfast.  I am totally grateful for the simple things because I don’t have to have any of it.  I don’t have everything I want but I have exactly what I need and then some. 

God has been more than gracious to me, even down to the very breath I breathe…and I don’t have any breathing complications.  When you start your day and take inventory of your blessings, the “little” things in life, you realize how BIG of a blessing everything your life is. 

Today, find a reason to appreciate everything and everyone you encounter.  I promise it will completely change your day for the better. :)

Happy Grateful Day!

Profound

I heard some of the most profound statements this past Sunday.  The focus of Sunday was Worship and before they prayed to open service, one of the worship leaders spoke.  He talked about how we have a tendency to look at our lives and then look at God and how backward that is.  He said we should always have our focus on God understanding He’s still, and will always be, on the throne.  We won’t wake up one day and Satan will have gained the victory and our lives will be different, so we need to always keep our focus on the fact that God is on, and always will be, on the throne.  SO PROFOUND. Then, he went on to pray and mentioned that we come to Him not from a place of agonies or blessings but coming to Him simply because of who He is…worshipping Him simply because He’s God…and He’s on the throne. lol It’s repetitive but, the more it’s said, the more it sinks in…at the beginning and end of the day, Jesus reigns. The end.  There’s nothing to worry about, fear, question…Jesus is, He has an ultimate plan and blueprint and, if we stay in His will, all will work out.

Kentuckiana Cruise 2013

I just got back from a 4 day, 4 night cruise!  I had a blast, let me tell ya! The wind blew through my hair, the water glistened as we moved along and all I could think is, “This is bliss!”  I was cruising, baby!  Cruisin’ in my car, that is.

My 4 day, 4 night cruise started Wednesday at 4 pm.  We had Thursday off from work as it was the holiday and I took Friday off.  Wednesday evening I went to fellowship with my good friends the Wallaces.  It’s nothing like having good friends to spend time with. I’m really bad about keeping up with folks, but the moments of catch up are always entertaining.  My fiance went with me to hang with the Wallace’s also but it got late so we had to leave the partiers alone. hahaha

I also had a chance to have a mini-Bible study with some really great men and women of God. I love round-table discussions more than anything. I personally believe that’s what Bible study should be instead of someone standing before the congregation teaching.  Give me a facilitator, a table to spread out with my Bible and notebook and give me space to think.  I love with people discuss their ideas and it makes me think about something totally different or we all find ourselves mildly stumped, go to the Greek or Hebrew and then discuss some more.  All of that to say, it was refreshing. 

I stayed the night with another friend.  She and I had been planning to have a sleepover for the longest and this was the closest we’ve made to progress.  You guys, we were up flapping our gums about everything and nothing until after 2 am.  I loved it.

Thursday was the Flood of July…I mean, Fourth of July.  I was up bright and shiny with my friend who had to be to work that morning.  She, my fiance and I went to go party with the Wallaces and sing a new “song.”  Such a beautiful melody.  Eventually, friend had to go back to work and the fiance and I went to frolic.  I got some exceptionally discounted FROYO at Orange Leaf which left me tickled pink! We then walked around the mall and burned it off. ;)

Day two of my cruise started with lounging. lol I have a really bad habit of waking up early when I don’t need to be anywhere.  The fiance and I met up at FirstWatch.  It’s a breakfast, brunch or lunch restaurant.  He was introduced to it by some friends and highly recommended it so we put it on our itinerary.  It was SO good! The portions were filling and it was reasonably priced.  He order a multigrain pancake (only one came with his meal but you can order the pancakes in stacks) and the pancake was literally as big as his face…if not bigger.

After leaving FirstWatch, we went over to Gabriel Brother’s as I wanted to see if I could find any good 4th of July deals.  They really didn’t have anything…no one did, in all honesty.  We quickly left there and when to the movies.  We saw After Earth which wasn’t bad but I’m glad I only paid $2 to see it. It was rather thought-provoking.  After that, I don’t remember what we did. lol

Day Three: Journey to Mammoth Cave.  We were about 2.5 hours away from Mammoth Cave.  I had never been and nor has my fiance.  We cruised on down the road, got turned around but eventually found where we needed to be (a lot of twists and turns).  It was so cool to go into a cave.  To see God’s work of art, progressive work even as it’s still growing, was beautiful.  It was mildly entertaining to me how it was cold, until we went into the cave, came out and then it was hot. lol  The cave stays at a cool temperature. 

After leaving the cave, we wanted to frolic in other parts of the state and found a mall about 23 miles further away from home.  That’s also where we decided to get victuals considering we were a ways away.  We went to O’ Charley’s and we had to download a coin-tossing app because I couldn’t decide on whether or not I wanted to the potato soup (which comes with a dessert) or chicken tenders and fries.  I really wanted the chicken and pie. lol  I got the chicken but the lady actually brought out an extra soup so I had chicken tenders, fries and a soup to go! #score!!!!  Of course, because I didn’t order the soup, I didn’t get the pie but my fiance did and he didn’t really eat the pie.  So I got chicken tenders, fries, soup AND pie! #winning  I was rather stuffed. We headed on back, visited our best friend-in-laws and called it a night. Day four was Sunday.

The service we attended Sunday didn’t start until 5 pm which meant I had all day to rest up.  I couldn’t believe how tired I was! The lady I was staying with gave me an eye mask so I would check to see the time and put the mask back on. smh  I slept good though. 

Service was pretty good!  They did something different - a Q & A about worship.  The questions were submitted about a week before service and then a couple of folks answered the questions during Sunday service.  There were some really great questions and really great insight. One of the things that stuck with me was a quote shared by a lady named Rachel, she quoted, “If you are trying to measure your worship, you don’t know how much He’s worth.”  There were many others but this still stands out.

Once service was over, I had to leave my vacation, my fiance and go back to reality.  At the end of the day, though, I had a blast!!! I spent everyday since Wednesday with mi amor and I got to see a lot of good friends, meet new people and experience new things.  Who wouldn’t enjoy a weekend like that?

What’s fair is fair

We all have things that “run in the family.”  For me, premature graying and twins run in my family - all on my mother’s side.  The twins run on both my mother’s maternal and paternal side, but in different patterns.  The premature graying runs on her maternal side.  My mother got both the premature gray and twins.

I am totally blessed to have twins brothers.  My brothers are the coolest thing since sliced bread.  They’re pretty amazing simply because of how they operate as twins and watching their connection and bond.  We’re all pretty close but the twin thing, I must admit, is really cool. 

My fiance is obsessed with twins. Well, “obsessed” may be too strong of a word but he also thinks twins are the coolest thing since sliced bread and has always wanted twins and got even more excited knowing I have twin brothers because, in his mind, that means the chances are greater for him to have twins.  Speaking from my POV, that’s totally selfish, y’know?  Without thought to mommy and what those little creatures will do to her body and what kind of pregnancy I would have, he is really praying for twins. lol s.m.h. hahaha  The truth of the matter is, neither of the patterns call for me to have twins.  Because I’m in the generation with twins, our kids will probably have twins.

On the other hand, we have the premature graying.  This happens every generation. My Great Uncle Tim looks like Fred Sanford and has a head full of white hair.  My mom started graying in her twenties.  My brother has had random grays hairs for years but they aren’t noticeable…unless you happen to be sitting with your chin on his scalp.  Just this year, just a month ago, my mom had come to visit me and noticed I had two grays hairs near the nape of my neck.  I was totally disappointed. lol  Even worse, this morning, I saw two gray hairs near my temple.  I shook my head, sighed a sigh of surrender and accepted my fate.  I have seen many women with beautiful salt and pepper hair at young ages and they didn’t look old - it was beautiful.  All that to say, I don’t plan to dye my hair because I’ve found a few grays.  However, I do have a set of expectations:

  1. The gray needs to be dispersed.  All of the gray hairs found on my head have been on the left side. I refuse to look like Cruella Deville.
  2. My gray needs to be silvery or white - no dull grays. I am constantly bettering my eating habits so my body needs to respond accordingly. lol
  3. Since I have the gray, I shall not get the twins.  After all, what’s fair is fair.

Set A Fire

I have a grill.  I have a hibachi grill.  I have had this grill for about a year.  I don’t know how to grill…at least I didn’t until today.

I have always wanted to grill stuff like burgers or brats, yet I have this grill sitting in my kitchen and have no clue how to use it.  Furthermore, I’m afraid to try because 1 million things could go wrong. 

Today I took a leap of faith.  Yes, it was a leap of faith to grill - my eyebrows, hair, skin, food, apt were all at risk. lol  My fiance encouraged the foolishness.  He added fuel to my flame (no pun intended) and encouraged me to buy the charcoal, debunked all of the reasons I shouldn’t including not having metal utensils and I did it.  Boy, was I like a kid in a candy store when the coals set aflame!  I watched a the fire flickered and ran into the kitchen to prep my meat.

I am happy to announce that I have successfully grilled smoked sausage and didn’t burn anything!  Furthermore, my meat was cooked all the way through!  Tomorrow I think I will tackle hamburgers.  I told my fiance, before this all began, “You know, if this is successful, you won’t be able to get me to stop grilling.”  It’s true.  I’m already thinking of things to grill.  Granted, all foods aren’t grilled the same but I am super excited to learn.  I love cooking and learning new dishes.  Now that I have another method of cooking, my meal repertoire will most definitely increase. haha Dinner tonight was grilled 4 Pepper Smoked Sausage and cabbage. Yum!

Happy eats, folks!
 

Uncapped turned 2 today (last week)!


I haven’t be on here in about 2 years and I got this reminder in my email last week.  I thought about when I created this blog, what was happening in my life, going through my head and I remember this being a place for me to vent.  I couldn’t exactly communicate everything into words (verbally, I guess) so I took to sharing with the internet.  Clearly this wasn’t helping. 

Now, in a new place mentally, emotionally, I think I will pick it back up.  I have so much to say sometimes that I could keep a person on the phone for hours (typically that’s my fiance - bless his heart).  We’ll see what happens. 


Stay tuned. :)

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