Wednesday, March 27, 2013


I'm going!
My aunt runs a missions organization that does medical missions throughout the world. I have been supporting her for several years, and have wanted to go on a trip with them - but also wanted to be useful :) When I finally got into nursing school I told my aunt that I could come on a trip when I graduated - and she told me to come this summer!
I hemmed and hawed and prayed about it. I wanted to make sure God was leading me, and I wanted to make sure I didn't fail out of nursing school first!
Then on Monday I got an email saying the application deadline was coming up and I needed to send half the money in the next 2 weeks. Yikes! So I wrote up a support letter and sent it off. The next day my aunt sent me an email saying all my money had been raised! Huh?? That was fast! Praise God! It was very exciting and felt like a confirmation that God really is leading this.
For my prayer partners out there, please pray for me July 6-14th when I will be in Guatemala. And please pray now for the hearts of the people that our team will come in contact with, that they will be open and thirsty for truth. “As we work to alleviate human suffering, God works to open the hearts of those served so that they might understand the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”
Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. Matthew 9:35

Monday, March 25, 2013

8 months

Today I'm 8 months divorced. I can't help but tally up the months whenever I notice it's the 25th. But time is moving by. 8 months. The same number of months we were engaged. I had been engaged before, so I really wanted us to do everything we could to understand the decision we were making. We even did pre-engagement counseling, and then 8 full months of pre-marital counseling, marriage weekends, and 2 'check ups' with the pastor who did all that counseling and married us. I really thought we were going in with our eyes open. (As much as you can anyway without being actually married of course). Now I feel silly. My worst fear back then was a second broken engagement, it never crossed my mind I would ever be divorced.
A month or 2 after Andrew announced he wanted a divorce I went to a restaurant to eat with some friends. While I was there I randomly ran into the pastor who married us. Of course he asked me where Andrew was. I told him things weren't so great. He said for me to come into the office to talk to him. We did, and it was good. It didn't change the outcome of anything, obviously, but it was good. I actually felt really bad, it felt like he was taking some of the responsibility. Even after the divorce he's emailed me a couple times to ask if there was anything I think we missed in our counseling, or what he could do better. I don't feel very helpful, even now 8 months later, I don't really know what happened or how it could have been prevented.
How do you measure someones commitment level? I remember him proposing to me, "I promise I'll love you forever", blah blah blah... it turns out forever to him was almost exactly 2 years from that date of the proposal until he said he didn't love me anymore.
I feel bad, like I'm throwing him under the bus again. I guess I just wish that after sometime has gone by that I would have a little more clarity about it. But no.
And I guess I should know that, in my divorce class we talked a lot about how you will probably never get any more closure or what you think you need to hear from that ex-spouse. And the only thing to do is move forward. To forgive. To let go. The page yesterday from my devotional was actually really perfect:
This is a time in your life when you must learn to let go: of loved ones, of possessions, of control. In order to let go of something that is precious to you, you need to rest in My presence, where you are complete. Take time to bask in the light of My love. As you relax more and more, your grasping hand gradually opens up, releasing your prized possession into My care.
You can feel secure, even in the midst of cataclysmic changes, through awareness of My continual presence. The One who never leaves you is the same One who never changes: I am the same yesterday, today, and forever. As you release more and more things into My care, remember that I never let go of your hand. Herein lies your security, which no one and no circumstance can take from you.
So very true. God is so very good.
For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you. Isaiah 41:13

Friday, March 22, 2013

birthday cards

Honestly I am a dollar tree card kinda girl. I don't like spending a lot of money on something most people just throw away. But every once in awhile I get a good idea and then I like to make a card.
My favorite one ever was the one I made last year for Andrew's birthday. It was after he'd said he wanted a divorce, but I was still hoping he wouldn't actually file. In the midst of all that, he had a birthday. I got him some presents, made an ice-cream cake, his favorite dinner that he didn't even eat, and made a card. It was based on a you tube dog video I found hilarious. But he opened it when I wasn't there and when I texted him to ask if he laughed- he never wrote back. I'm sure he did, not to pat myself on the back too much, but it was a good one. But half the best part about a funny card is watching them open it.
Anyway, last weekend on Liz's birthday I got to watch her open this gem- based off our recent ogling over Josh Duhmel in that movie we watched together
(that face is CLEARLY a makeout face, not an about to barf face)
She laughed :)

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Religion with my boss

Today on the way to lunch:
My boss: you'd like the new pope, he's humble, and you're kind of humble.
Me: hmm.. ok thanks
Later in Costco where he stopped to get giant things of apple juice for his kids and we passed by the Easter dresses:
My boss: I think we got this one for my daughter's Easter dress
Me: (teasing) Oh for your annual trip to church?
My boss: No. We don't go to church- we go to the club.
Me: You'd rather see some bunny than celebrate Jesus's only risen son?!?
cricket cricket
My boss: Jesus didn't have a son.
Me: Haha, touché
(I knew that God I swear!)

Monday, March 18, 2013

Cooking and Crafting

Last week I made this gem of a recipe from Andrew's co-worker that he left behind. Mexican Lasagne. Very easy: brown hamburger and onions, add taco seasoning, corn, canned tomatoes (I used salsa) and layer in corn tortillas and cheese and bake until melted.
I cut up that onion that was growing in the pantry
I used the green onion part and a chopped tomato with salt and pepper and garlic powder to make a topping
VERY good
Also this weekend was my bf's birthday. I got her a few other presents but wanted to make one of those grocery bag holders for her as well.
my craft station
stitching on a pretty pattern
I seem to always run out of muslin backing, so I had to piece together some parts, annoying
I had enough material that I thought I'd make another one for another friend whose birthday is this summer. Why not??
We went to Pei Wei to celebrate her birthday with some other friends and her parents. Her mom loved the holder, I guess I see making another one in my future...
The rest of the weekend was studying.
I learned to hang IVs last week in lab and brought my stuff home to practice. We have to calculate the drip rate and then count the drops to make sure it's accurate. It's tricky! I had a piggy-back antibiotic to calculate, which is a smaller amount, like 50ml, and by the time I got the drip rate right there was only like 10mls left in the bag! Whoops. My classmate joked that I would document "patient refused 4/5s the medication." I'm sure that's only a joke nursing students would find funny, but I thought it was hilarious.
And this weekend was church. On the whole, I love my church and I think God is doing great things there. But this week something bothered me. (JG I hope you're not mad if you read this!) For the closing song, our band played "Better Days" by the Goo Goo Dolls. Ummmm... wth?? The song could possibly have some Christian undertones, but isn't really glorifying to God in any way. One lyric reads, "and the one poor child who saved this world (Jesus, ok) and there's ten million more who probably could." Um, no they can't, no other person is God's perfect son dying for our sins. I even looked it up to see if there was something I'm missing on why it's a great song for church, but wikipedia just talked about it being originally performed as a Target store branded Christmas album and they played it a lot for Hurricane Katrina and it's played after the Orlando Magic team loses their games. It bugged me. There are SO MANY amazing songs that worship and praise God, and not to mention the lack of wonderful hymns by contemporary churches everywhere. I just don't understand that choice at all. Wow, I talked about that a lot... but it really bugged me. It's not something my church does often, and like I said, it is a great church, but yeah, hope that stays to a minimum.
One of the good things my church is doing the next few weeks is the Daniel Fast again. For the next 2 weeks before Easter they are asking the church body to do the fast and focus on God and what He wants to do in our lives and in His church. And to pray for the lives that will be changed with the Easter message.
I feel much better prepared to do the fast this time around. When I heard that we were doing it again, I remembered last year my days meal of oatmeal, a spoon of pb, and prunes. But this time I have a much better handle on the food. Liz even brought me over some of her products:
Mmmm, guacamole, pesto, spicy veggie chips, raw ranch dip, hummus, fruit leather, and macaroons. She is always making new flavors, this time Cinnamon Swirl macaroons that taste just like a cinnabon, mmmm. One of the best parts about having a best friend in a food business is you just mention some flavor you think might be good, and sooner or later a sample is dropped off at your door! I mentioned I would love a lemony hummus, and she made me one. So good! And everything perfect for the Daniel Fast!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Operation Sleep

So I mentioned before that I can hardly sleep in this condo. 2 reasons. Number 1: it is a sauna in here. Everyday it is 80+ degrees. Number #2: the radiator makes an intermittent clicking noise that NEVER STOPS. The heat issue: free heat so my roommate doesn't care and she likes it hot. But the thermostat is pretty much non-responsive. It's one of those old school dials and keeps the condo at 80, even though the needle is set to 65. The second issue I have no clue what it is. A heating & cooling friend I desperately emailed for help just said it's the pipes contracting and expanding because of the temperature differences and there's nothing to do. So I've been sleeping with my window open, fan on, earplugs in, and still I've been sleeping like crap for months now. And slept thru my alarm twice because of the earplugs.
An engineering friend of mine got me some insulation, the kind that goes in cars to soundproof them, and I had a brilliant idea to muffle the pipes.
the offending pipe
covered in insulating fluff
layer of foil to help seal it in. Hey, I don't really know what I'm doing, it could have worked.
But no.
I was still taping up the foil but could already still plainly hear the clicks from inside. The heat issue was helped a bit, but nothing for the noise.
I was so sure it was going to work! I feel so discouraged. It is so frustrating.
I don't remember it doing it in the fall, so maybe in the spring it will be quiet again. But it bothers me so much. I lay awake every night near tears and swearing at it. I don't know what else to do. I might need to move out, I can't take another year and a half of no sleep.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013


Oh my gosh I am still so tired, daylight savings time, curse you!
So my bar of soap always breaks in half near the end of its life and it dries up and gets all scaly and crusty... does anyone else ever have this problem?? I do not really want to rub this scratchy thing anywhere
This weekend Jill and I went out with another friend to celebrate his birthday. We went to a little dessert bar and got chocolate fondue and listened to live music and played Rochesterhills-opoly. It was pretty fun.
I made yummy sweet potato fries and crispy chickpea bites again
Jill got Becks' hair cut, or shorn as I like to say since he is like a little lamb afterwards. I think he's kinda ugly the first few days until his lion mane grows back. The best part is that he feels so silky and luxurious to pet afterwards.
I made this delicious chocolate cake for my mom's bday, I made coconut whip cream (fail) and strawberries to go on top, and went up to my parents house. We had a nice dinner together and watched The Way. That movie was so good, and really made me want to hike the trail. I met a couple on our Peru trip who had hiked it, and it sounded really cool. Maybe someday...
I finished up one semester on Monday (A!) and started a new one today. I feel like I say this everytime, but this one is supposed to be the one that a lot of people fail out of, so I am nervous. I already had this teacher before and she would give us an assignment and then leave class to work on her doctoral homework while we taught ourselves from the book. So hopefully she'll give this class more attention!
Sadly the Bachelor is over. It was good times watching with my friend groups this season. I still was a little surprised that for being so 'Christian' when he was on the Bachelorette, that there was barely any talk of God on his season. Altho my friend Liz said that 'Christian Bachelor' probably wouldn't get as many viewers as 'half-drunk, 50shades of grey, hot tub bachelor' which is the norm. And she made some joke about ABC telling Sean "only one God reference per episode". Anyway, it's so tv, but I love watching it all the same. Can't wait for the Bachelorette! (altho I wish it was Lindsey)
Tonight I made Chicken Enchilada Pasta, yummy
(I know I should probably use up this onion, but I love watching it grow!)
Peppers and onions sauteing
Chopping cooked chicken
Becks was very happy to eat the chicken parts I deemed veiny or otherwise unappealing
Simma down now. Simmering with the enchilada sauces, cheese and sour cream
The final product topped with a dab more sour cream and sliced avocado. Super good.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Visit to Kentucky Jill

Over my spring break I went to visit my friend Jill. I met her almost 10 years ago when I did a missions internship down in Oklahoma. She used to be Oklahoma Jill (since I already have a friend Jill), but then moved to Kentucky to go to seminary school and is now henceforth known as Kentucky Jill. And such a dear precious friend.
Usually we have wild adventures together, but this time was very relaxing and just really nice to be together. There were lots of talks, sleeping in, watching movies, contra-dancing, eating popcorn, more talks, walks, and of course laughs.
It seems like in every city Jill lives in there are these amazing Christian opportunities of stuff going on, that I never seem to find in my state. She had told me before of these retreats she went on and loved, and there was one going on the weekend I was in town. So we went. It was a retreat for 'spiritual refreshment' for women and we met at a cottage with 18 other women. The theme was being loved by God. There was time of bible study, prayer, and focused discussion, and then they gave you a lot of time to go off and think and pray or cry or journal or whatever you needed to do. They encouraged you to try different ways to commune with God. One way was through drawing. They had nice art paper and art supplies and encouraged you to let your mind go blank and then just start.
I felt the song 'as the deer' in my mind and started to draw a deer. I thought hey, I've got this, I'm being inspired by God to draw something beautiful for Him, it's going to be amazing as I expected something Michaelangelo-esque to appear on the page. Instead:
haha, it's more like a failed Rudolph, what a manly strong jaw you have there Rudolph
I laughed and then just doodled
my where to live comparison list
a random parade
the drawings I always used to do to tease the boys I nannied by giving us animal names that sounded like our last names
Clearly I do not commune with God through art.
So anyway, the retreat was awesome. There was a time of small group prayer and sharing and it was really good to open up and cry and share with a few people about feelings. Distrust, trust, loss, sadness, hope.
God is good.
Jill made me some dish called Bulgogi, I was skeptical, but it was very tasty.
Also while I was there I noticed Jill still had her old car in the driveway (she'd been driving her new one for over a year now). I asked her about it and she said she didn't want to list it because she didn't want Craigslist creeps coming to her house since she lives alone. I encouraged (peer-pressured) her to list it while I was there, and in fact, listed it myself. Within 2 hours she had an email, we both drove off to meet the person, and by the end of the night her car was sold. Praise God! His hand was all over that.
Jill took me to this awesome frozen yogurt place to celebrate (see I knew she'd be happy she did it!)
For once I chose fruit over chocolate and thoroughly enjoyed my pineapple, pomegranate, and blueberry fro-yo with chopped fruit. Yum.
It was a great visit and a great time with my friend!!!

Friday, March 1, 2013

Nicholas Sparks

How lucky is Nicholas Sparks that 10 out of his 17 books have been made into movies. (8 out now, 2 in the works) Wow, he is really talented. So what if his books are somewhat similar and hopelessly romantic, I like them. Last night my friend Liz and I went to watch Safe Haven which we are reading for our next book club. The book was amazing, the movie, so-so as usual. But it starred that gorgeous hunk Josh Duhamel. Liz said if it was just 2 hours of staring at his face on the screen it would be money well spent. Lol. But so true.
Out of his 8 movies, there were 4 that I've read the book and seen the movie:
A Walk to Remember: book was better, and even had a different ending that made you wonder if she really dies in the end.
The Notebook: another hunk Ryan Gosling. This one I don't remember which one I liked better movie or book, they were also very different.
The Lucky One: book was better. But Zac Efron, oh my gosh, yum.
And last nights
...I'm noticing a trend with the photos there... the photo director: and passionate embrace almost kiss time - go!
anyway, Safe Haven- again the book was much much better. But enjoyed Josh watching. The girl was a very meh actress, (stick to dancing Julianne!) her character did not really develop as well as the book and it seems all these movies took such liberties from the books, whereas the Twilight series and Hunger Games really stuck well to the books. I'm not sure why that is. Anyway, a fun night with my friend.
This next week is spring break.
Side note, after years of watching Arrested Development I cannot say 'spring break' without wanting to pretend to lift my shirt a la Kitty
Maybe you'd have to watch it
Anyway, I am going to visit my friend in Kentucky, and altho I have to bring my school books with me, I am really looking forward to the break!