Thursday, December 10, 2009

'tis the season

today was a great day! Ellen and I slept late and then woke up and ate pancakes, then we went to Barnes and Noble and read for a few hours with coffee and tea, of course...then we ate Panera for dinner and went to the grocery store...then I went to my work Christmas party where I ate great food and hung out with great people! now I'm watching a movie with doesn't get much better :) the only sad part is that I think I'm getting a cold...guess I took care of one too many kids with one too many bugs...

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

around the world

we're doing a bake sale and a raffle at the hospital to raise money so that we can buy Christmas presents and such for 2 of our families that can't afford it...i decided i would make an "Around the World" basket...nichole and i planned to go to world market tomorrow to get stuff. then, i looked in my room. i found 2 bookmarks from Guatemala, a purse from Zambia, a picture frame from Paris, 2 necklaces, a bookmark, and a good luck charm from China, and Masala simmer sauce to represent India. my friend Jenny's bringing me German candy. that's a pretty sweet basket already and i haven't even made it to world market yet. ha!

being a change agent

sometimes i wonder if i say everything i should. or if i say more than i should. or if anyone even cares.

today I went to several mini-conferences about family-centered rounds. in pediatrics, we're starting a new way of doing rounds, meeting at the bedside with the nurse, family, and patient present for the entirety of the rounding all the while allowing the nurse, the patient, and the family to have a voice throughout. amazing. i can't wait to see this implemented with my patients. it's going to change the quality of my nursing care for the better. today i was reminded that i love being a part of a team and i love talking about ways to do the things that we do better, more efficiently, and with more love and consideration for our patients. i feel like it's God answering my frequent prayer that He would let me glimpse some of His redemption within the context of health care. there's so much brokenness but every once in a while, we do something right. i met with residents, interns, attendings, NP's, social workers, faculty MD's, and med students today and each of us agreed that the care of our patients would improve if we implemented this type of rounding into our norm. can we do it? i think so. but someone has to bite the bullet and take the risk of being the first to try. change is hard but it's worth the struggle if what emerges is a system that empowers our patients and families, allows every member of the team to have a voice, streamlines the efficiency of our jobs, and ultimately leads to better overall care and outcomes for the kids we love. i so hope today wasn't wasted.

Thursday, November 26, 2009


Last night as I was driving back from visiting one of my sweet pseudo-families on their farm, thinking about what I would do if I got put on call today and didn't have to work, I was overwhelmed with the reality of the amazing fellowship that the Lord has blessed me with. There are several families that I dearly love who I'm positive would welcome me whole-heartedly into their Thanksgiving day. There aren't words for how great it is to be loved so well...I'm positive it's God's way of showing me what His love is like on a smaller scale but one that is quite effective at pointing me to Jesus and reminding me that I have much to be grateful for. So, today I got put on call, much to my surprise and I'm here at the Hodges' just hanging out. I wish I could put into words how much I love them and how thankful I am for them but it overwhelms me to even try so I'll just settle for saying that I'm thankful that I can crash their Thanksgiving and feel completely at home.

There's something to be said for this day where you're supposed to remember everything that God has given you and thank Him for it. Although, I think it should be every day, I was praying this morning that the Lord would give me a spirit of gratefulness today especially and I'm humbled at the peace that He is to my heart..and the unbelievable number of things that He has blessed me with...that could never be summed up on this little blog..

"Oh praise the One who paid my debt and raised this life up from the dead"

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Soli Deo Gloria

Sometimes I wonder if people know what I mean by my blog title...just in case you don't, I'll tell you :) I also just realized that I have no idea who "you" is referring to cause I have no idea who actually reads this, if anyone..

Piper says that "brokenhearted joy" should be the defining reality of a believer's life this side of heaven.

He wrote in World magazine, "But our joy is a brokenhearted joy because Christ is worthy of so much better obedience than we Christians render. Our joy is a brokenhearted joy because so many people around the world have not heard the good news that "Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners" (1 Timothy 1:15). And our joy is a brokenhearted joy because human culture—in every society—dishonors Christ, glories in its shame, and is bent on self-destruction."

I just found this quote and it really resonates tonight after going to small group with the core group starting the church plant that I'm a part of...We talked about community and how we can be plugged into the community and really knowing and loving people in Morrisville...“The salt of the earth does not mock rotting meat. Where it can, it saves and seasons. And where it can't, it weeps. And the light of the world does not withdraw, saying ‘good riddance’ to godless darkness. It labors to illuminate. But not dominate. . . . We don't own culture, and we don't rule it. We serve it with brokenhearted joy.”...The more I think about the reality of this church plant and the caliber of people that I'm in this with, I'm just extremely humbled and just plain excited about seeing what God has already done and is going to do in and through us! to Him be the glory!

It was nice to catch up on life today a little...Copper got a bath, I ran some errands, did laundry, stocked the cabinets, worked on the budget, got my hair cut...lots of random stuff that did not get done before I left for the beach :)

ok, I should stop writing and go to bed..

Saturday, October 10, 2009

at the beach

so, I've been challenged inadvertently by a new friend to blog way more often than I do. By reading my blog, you'd have no idea how much I actually love to express myself in words and share my life with people. maybe I prefer to do it face-to-face but with the amount of time I spend on the computer, I should be at least doing something that I know is therapeutic and helpful rather than wasteful.

Right now, I'm at the beach with my pseudo-family..aka my best friend's family that has adopted me into theirs and lets me come on the family beach trip every year :) it's wonderful..and such a blessing to be known and loved by them. Shan asked me this morning if I was relaxed yet and I just couldn't answer honestly with a yes..I'm getting there but there's just so much on my mind and on my heart that I haven't gotten to process over the past month of working, hanging out, and just plain being busy..Don't get me wrong, I love my life, sometimes I just forget that I still need a break every once in a while..usually I don't realize that I need one until someone forces me to take one and then I'm overwhelmed with a sense of how much I needed it.

So far on this trip, I've been overwhelmed by the Lord's love for me. I've gotten sweet time with Jesus to just be near Him and think about His truth and beg Him to allow it to transform and affect me to the core of who I am...I've been listening to Mark Driscoll who never fails to challenge me and encourage me and help me know more of Jesus...He has a series on Proverbs and it's awesome so far..In the second sermon, he talks about pursuing out deepest desires rather than being so easily satisfied by things that aren't really what we want in our hearts..He quotes C.S. Lewis (a favorite) when he talks about our desires being far too small, we are far too easily pleased..when I think about the things that I ask and expect of the Lord, I am ashamed often of the lack of faith that I have in Him to do mighty things that I can't even imagine..I want to learn to ask for BIG things and expect Him to blow me away!

I have more thoughts but we're headed to dinner so I'm taking a break..

Sunday, September 27, 2009

lovers bold in broken places

i love this quote:

We are only asked to love, to offer hope to the many hopeless. We don't get to choose all the endings, but we are asked to play the rescuers. "We won't solve all mysteries and our hearts will certainly break in such a vulnerable life, but it is the best way. We were made to be lovers bold in broken places, pouring ourselves out again and again until we're called home." -twloha

This weekend was amazing! sweet time of teaching and sitting under the Word and great fellowship with some really fun people :) I got to hear Corey speak for the first time..I loved it, which is good considering he's gonna be my pastor for probably quite a while..this church plant thing is gonna be awesome! the Lord is rocking our faces off with His faithfulness in this..praise the Lord for what He's doing with His church..and that He lets us be a part of it..One of the things Corey said that I love is "the effects of true intimacy with Jesus is alignment with His purposes and freedom in His presence"..what a sweet truth..

I'm so thankful for times like retreats to worship and be renewed and refreshed and reminded of the ways that the Lord has blessed's really incredible...

I discovered a new favorite activity...singing karaoke with a certain 4 people and an iphone after about good for the heart..

also, nerts is still a favorite. especially when i win :)

ok, time for a sunday afternoon nap before a fun dinner with friends!

Thursday, July 2, 2009


where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom...

I've been learning about prayer...reading about what TK calls "mini-pentecosts," deposits of the Spirit and the power that is involved...our God is so creative :) throughout history, the revival that is rooted in corporate prayer is remarkable...oh that we would pray together...all the "mini-pentecosts" in scripture have 2 things in common...first that there is a continual need to renew the fullness of the Spirit, and second that the fullness is generally connected to prevailing prayer, especially in the face of a challenge...why is there need for renewal? we keep forgetting the goodness of our God and worshipping other people and things..we keep looking for rest for our souls in relationships and money and "security" instead of in the only place we will ever find rest for our souls..

"my soul finds rest in God ALONE" ps.62

3 of my best friends are coming to visit this weekend :) my sister Alisa is coming and I'm so excited to see her and spend time with her, it's been way too long...i love knowing her...Rachel's coming, too...we've been through so much together, our friendship has taken quite the beating and now it's a beautiful picture of the grace of God and the reality of the gospel, commitment and a relationship that's not about how you feel but about Jesus goes a long way in the face of struggle...Becca's coming, too...she was my first best friend at PC, we were suitemates...and then we were roommates and we've fought through some really hard things and had to be really honest with each other, and we've learned so much about grace and life and joy that is found in's especially fun that she's coming since she's been in China for 2 years! it's nice to be within driving distance.. not that thousands of miles and 6 plane rides stopped me :)

I love my new apartment. and my new roommates. so much. there'll be more words for that later...right now I'm just enjoying it :)

time to get ready for a nap...yay for working nights!

Friday, June 12, 2009

i sent one of my favorite patients home today :( i'm glad she gets to go home, just sad for myself cause i don't get to hang out with her whenever i want...

i had a great day at work...not very busy...just mostly fun..

i love my job.

i'm going to see becca tomorrow...i hope i can still get packed in time to move next saturday!

i love my family..

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

busy day

i was doing so well today..until i found the chocolate cake in the was getting dry, someone needed to eat it :) yum!

today was an insane day at the hospital...i started out with 5 kids (not too bad usually) but they were all pretty med heavy around the 8-9 o'clock hour so that got me started running...then one of my kids was scheduled to leave around 10 so paperwork had to be done for him and of course they scheduled a PICC placement on my other kid at the same time and needed me to do conscious sedation all while another kid was getting circumcised...whew! thankfully, the PICC got postponed because of someone else's mis-communication...i love it when it's not my fault! so then in the midst of all this, they call me for report on a new kid i was getting...meanwhile, they're altering the orders on all of my kids...crazy whirlwind of madness! AND an interviwee was shadowing me, which was great but i felt bad cause it was crazy! so, i sent one to rehab, fed two, sedated one, held one, took out 4 IV's, changed a few diapers, sent another one home, fetched lots of popsicles and ginger ale, sent another one home, had a heart to heart with an irrational homesick 6-year-old, got a new kid, did some paperwork, all while falling in love with 6 precious children...

my feet hurt and i didn't eat until 4:30pm...but it's worth it...AND everything got done! it's a miracle! thanks to my awesome co-workers who check PCA's and run flushes and document vitals..

someone looked at me today and said "you seem so calm..aren't you a new grad?"...i said yep. and then i said "no use in stressing'll all get done" so i'm thankful for the peace that Jesus is to my heart especially in the midst of a day like today...

Saturday, June 6, 2009

i've been advancing..

I have been blown away by God's glory and who Jesus is this week...I went to the Advance's maybe the most God-honoring, Christ-centered thing I've ever been a part of...please, please listen to the talks...if you can only listen to one make it Mark Driscoll's talk on Ministry Idolatry...but be prepared to be ripped to shreds..

praise Jesus that He is faithful to show up when His people gather...and that He loves us despite our brokenness and our mess...and that He is committed to seeing His Kingdom move forward on this earth until EVERY nation has heard and is represented before the throne...

He is a GREAT God..

Monday, June 1, 2009

I need to start updating this thing more often so that when I do update I don't feel so overwhelmed by the amount of information I could vomit on demand...

i changed my mind, can't do it tonight...


Saturday, April 25, 2009


I went to a concert tonight that was so good for my heart...I was reminded how thankful I am that the Lord is a healer and a lover of sinners...because I'm broken and in disarray and I'm the chief of sinners...I was reminded how much I need Him to come in to all my broken places and mend me.

I've been in a funk for a while...mostly relational, or that's how it manifests itself anyways...a "funk" is code for the seasons when my time with Jesus is lacking and I become a selfish, withdrawn beast in my heart.

There's so much of my life that I love right now. I love my job, I love my friends, I've met some amazing new people that have blessed me tremendously in the past month...but something has just felt "off" lately...maybe it's transition to real adulthood, maybe it's deeper than that..

I need to get away. I need to be far from facebook and my cell phone and I need to talk. I just need to sit with someone and talk about heart issues face to face. I need to process in freedom and I just haven't had the chance to do that yet.

I can feel my heart just longing to really meet the Lord but there's a hesitancy that makes me so sad...I want to run with reckless abandon to His presence...I want that to be my essence.

I just feel dry. and I'd like to blame it on a few things but I think this time I'll just admit that more often than not the problem is that I'm being disobedient.

Lord, teach me to wait for you.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

a simpler life.

i think i'm going to become Amish.

Friday, April 3, 2009


i'm so excited about backpacking...14 days!

i work tomorrow and sunday after 7 days in a row off...sweet schedule :) and i even get to go home for Easter!

i had friends over for was so fun! i really do love to have people over...

time for bed...i was up way too late with my dear friends who are still in college...i am not in college anymore and my days of staying up until the wee hours of the morning are gone, i'm afraid...

Thursday, March 12, 2009

just say it

a random quiz just told me that I am "the communicator," a collector and facilitator of knowledge. i think i like being a collector and facilitator of knowledge.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

"Fear not little flock, for it is the Father's good pleasure to give you the Kingdom"

i haven't posted in a while. not because i haven't had anything to say but more because i've had so much to say that typing it all overwhelms me a bit.

i have lots of bruises from taekwondo tonight. it kinda feels good to know that i fought enough to get them. it's been awhile.

tonight i made dinner for one of my friends. it's a good feeling to make dinner for someone for a change instead of always having dinner made for me (although that's great to). just another sign that i'm done with school and coming up for air. :)

there's this boy that i wish would pursue me. but he's so out of my league.

lots of my friend are getting engaged! first Taryn a couple weeks ago, then Cindy, then Renee! i'm so excited for them...and so excited that i get to be in at least one of the weddings :) i LOVE being a bridesmaid!

i'm so thankful for this season of sabbath. but i don't want to get complacent here. i'm praying that even though i'm looking forward to the more "stable" adult life, that the Lord would meet me and never let me forget.

i'm excited about starting work saturday night. it's about time i got on the floor again! i have the best job ever..

i talked to a guy on the phone about missions today. my latest longing is to go to Mali. it's in africa, the national language is french, and the ministry is a children's hospital...not sure there's anything that would be a better fit for me. i wish i could go soon. but i don't think it's wise at this point.

i had an awesome birthday this year. my friends love me so so was such a reminder to me of the Lord's sweet provision for my life here in Durham. He is so good to me and i can point to all of the ways that He has been faithful to "give me the kingdom" here.

i'm praying about leading a small group in the fall for girls who've just graduated college. it's just such a hard transition and you need girls who have been there and are willing to love you through the hard parts and speak truth to you when it doesn't seem possible to believe it. maybe the Lord will call me to that. we'll see. i think it could be good. not to mention, i miss discipling girls so much...

ok, i need to go to bed. but i could write so much more. later.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

fear not

today i went to the Children's museum in Raleigh...and i still have the remnants of orange face paint on my face...awesome. but, really, it was super fun! i highly recommend it to kids of all ages..

Beth Moore was profound tonight...i can't even process it all...but she talked about fear and how any time we say or think "what if" we are really saying "i fear"'s true. did you know that the most frequent command in scripture is "do not fear"? and we cherish fear so closely that we can't shed it even when we're told to. we eat, sleep, and breathe fear. what if we broke free of that?

love the new Fray cd. it was recommended by my own personal music guru.

i have great friends here in durham. but sometimes, i miss my friends that don't live here.

i so value friends who speak truth to me even when it's not what i want to hear.

and i love real conversation and the freedom to be transparent even when everything in me wants to be superficial. it's amazing that my friends still love me. what a beautiful picture of the grace of our precious Savior.

Hebrews 2:14-15--i love these verses.
"Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery."

Saturday, February 21, 2009

camp and freeing friends

i love camp. why don't i go there more often? i'm thankful for freeing friends who give me the grace to be who i am and to say what's on my mind without fear of being judged. i learn so much from those kinds of friends. and they give great hugs. :)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

the babysitting extravaganza!

I love kids! I've been babysitting like crazy this week fact, i'm currently at my 3rd babysitting job in one day! It's been so fun, though...

Nathan and Megan are my first...they are 5 and far we've colored, put together puzzles, played hide and seek, gone bowling, played in the arcade, had a dance party, discussed the continents, planets and Magic school bus, and talked about Jesus...I was telling Megan about Jesus yesterday because she asked me about my gospel bracelet and after I talked, she said "When I get to heaven, I'm gonna give God a big kiss!...He's just soooo nice!" Imagine a cute little 5 year-old voice saying was precious...and a great reminder that our God is a good God who is for us and not against us!

Sadie, a precious 12 month-old is my second...she is awesome and I love taking care of her...she's just learning so much right we learned hat, top, cup, paci, nose, kitty, toy, and window...we had a minor crisis this afternoon due to a missing paci but one of the construction workers was so sweet to run to the store and get us a new one...David to the rescue! They're working on their house right now so Sadie and I spent most of the day outside which is great for me since she LOVES her stroller and I get to walk! There's a playground near the house that she and I have been frequenting...she used to hate the swing but now she loves it and she's obsessed with the slide...she's also great at meeting new people, which is always fun! Never a dull moment...

James is my last...he's asleep :) almost 4 months and so stinkin' cute...his parents have realized that they need date nights every once in a while so that their relationship doesn't end up revolving around James which is so wise and so good for a marriage...I love being able to be a part of a God-glorifying marriage by sitting at their house while they go out to dinner...

so, it's been a full day but the Lord is letting me spend time with kids and serve parents and fulfill a little piece of what I feel called to since I don't have a marriage or kiddos of my own yet! He truly does provide in the most creative ways :) I am so thankful to have a Jehovah Jireh who is committed to my life and knows exactly what I need...I am learning more and more that He is the only One who can love me perfectly and the only One who can be my all... praise Him for reminding me of that constantly!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Stepping into Athens

Tonight I stepped into Africa. I volunteered and a World Vision event at Alisa's church in Athens called "Step Into Africa." We walked through the life of a child affected by the HIV/AIDS pandemic. It was heart-breaking but so very real. everyone should do it.

check it out:

This is Eunice, my little girl. Isn't she precious?

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


so i've determined that i don't like discussing huge issues like homosexuality and abortion and the death penalty with people...especially people that i love a lot...i think it's hard cause i don't enjoy disagreeing even though i know it's ok...maybe i'm scared of those issues cause i can see both sides and i don't know how to make a decision about what i believe...but i'm thankful that no matter what i believe, it's not going to affect how i interact with people and how i love's just not that big of a deal...i feel like sometimes the issues cloud what the real heart issues are and it's more fun for people to debate those than to talk about the depths of the sin that we know fills our hearts and our need for rescue from it...but i'm thankful that there are people in my life that call the issues to mind and wrestle with them more than i's good to be reminded that these things really are a struggle for believers and that there's a reason that we don't have all the answers this side of heart breaks over the fact that we even have to discuss things like this and especially over the way that the church has royally screwed up loving people in the past and even's shocking how powerful sin is that it can shift our eyes from the one thing Jesus has called us to over everything else, love, and turn us into judgmental self-righteous buttheads...i've never been more sure of our need for His redemption..

Sunday, February 8, 2009


i'm home. and i love it. sometimes i wish i could be in 2 places at once. but i can't. copper is freaking huge! i want to be an artist. and play the cello. i'm officially a nurse. which is insane and also awesome. i love kids. and i want to be married. but i'm content. Jesus is amazing. my heart is joyful and resting in him and it's so not of me. i finished Shane's book. it rocked my world. not sure what Jesus wants me to do with it yet but i know it's something. we had our India time last night for all our supporters complete with pictures, stories, saris, and dessert! it was so fun. i wished i could've hung out and reminisced with the team more than we could but that will be for another time. i love people. what if i pay off my loans in 2 years? then can i go to africa?

Saturday, February 7, 2009

overwhelmed with joy

my heart is overwhelmed with joy and thankfulness right, it blows me away what the Lord is doing in my life and how He's growing me and shaping me and teaching me big things about His character and my identity and how sweet and dangerous it is to follow Jesus...there are too many things to write on this blog but let's just say He's teaching me profound things that are not just cool but are going to affect the way i live and think and love for the rest of my life..

i'm going home tomorrow to see my family and i'm so excited to see them! I'm even excited for the drive because i'm going to listen to more of Irresistible Revolution by Shane about shaking up your view of what the Lord is calling us to as bold followers of Christ...

I still want to go to Africa...I mean, Africa is in surround sound...specifically Kenya and Rwanda...I know I can't go for a few years cause I need to pay off my debt but if the Lord keeps going like He's been going, I'm gonna have to go pretty soon...

I have incredible these people who know me and love me and connect with me on a deep, real, heart level...and they speak truth to me and rejoice with me and weep with me and hug me when I need it...gah, I am so incredibly blessed..

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

thoughts of a needy girl

One of the things I love more than most things is praying with my sisters in Christ...there is just something beautiful and healing about coming together with a group of women who love Jesus and ascribing praise to Him and asking Him to move knowing that we are lost and broken and in deep need of rescuing that only He can provide...

I have a lot of thoughts right now...mostly about God's purposefulness and His provision and His creativity that brings about abundant life in the most barren of places...I am learning so much right now and I feel like the Lord is speaking to me in stereo these days...the speakers being friends, accountability group, bible study, sunday school, sermons, etc...He is opening my eyes and my heart to more of life in Him...

"God guides our minds as we think things out in His presence." J.I. Packer said that and it resonates in the deepest part of who I am...I am so thankful that our God is so powerful that we can ask Him to meet us and trust Him to guide our very thoughts and perspectives and feelings as we think about things and process life with Him and in Him..

"When we stay in our story, we are destined to become disillusioned and discouraged." What a gift the Lord has given us in our ability and desire to live in community and to know other miserable would we be if we were always stuck inside our own's incredibly miserable, as most of us have experienced at one point or another...the Lord has challenged me more than ever to get out of my own story and into other people' invest in family and reap the fruit of shared life...

"When I speak of the long night that preceded the days of my happiness, I don't remember grief and loneliness so much as I do peace and comfort--grief, but never without comfort; loneliness, but never without peace. Almost never." Marilyn Robinson wrote that in Gilead. I love this. I love that our God is a deliverer, that He promises to never leave. and I'm humbled and thankful that I know these words to be true and I beg the Lord to finish the work that He has begun in my heart..

Lord, teach me to look at suffering and sanctification and not wish it away but explore it and marvel at the creative ways You choose to shape my character. May I see suffering and wonder what part of my character is this refining? and rejoice that you are not a God who is concerned with my comfort but a God who is concerned with my holiness..

"Certainly our contentment does not consist in getting the thing we desire, but in God's fashioning our spirits to our conditions. God works in us to view things by faith despite our changing moods, and by doing so, we see things more and more filtered through God's perspective. By doing that we can see a little more of the big picture of all of the Lord's dealings with His people and bring that to bear on what is happening in our lives." Jeremiah Burroughs wrote this. What if our contentment didn't lie in our circumstances but in the character of God? a very wise woman told me last week that a Son of promise has been born and you have great hope not because your circumstances will change but because you know the character of an unchanging God. woah. Our hope IS in the character of God.

ultimately Jesus is the reversal of everything. He is in the business of bringing dead souls to life, working in our total inability to accomplish great things, using our suffering to His glory whether He lets us in on it or not, and knowing us. really knowing us.

I am thankful for the insight that the Lord has given me into brokenness and need. and I'm sure that at the places of brokenness, barrenness, hopelessness, and need are the exact places where the Lord loves to begin new chapters that are full of life...

Ever notice that all the forefathers of Christ were strong, they were kings, they were warriors...and when Jesus came, the people missed it cause they expected Him to be strong...Ever notice that all the foremothers of Jesus were barren women, broken, sufferers, disgraced, cast aside, needy...

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


i'm sitting in Panera and across from me are an high-schooler and a middle-aged lady hanging out and talking...i love that.

have i mentioned that i want to go to Africa? i'm praying about Kenya in July. a lofty goal but if the Lord wants me there, He'll open doors.

i'm loving my re-entry into the land of the living post nursing school...i feel more like me than i have in a year and a half.

i'm thinking about taking a part time nanny job. i think it'll be good. we'll see.

i'm almost finished with a whole nclex review book. that's a big deal for me. in the process, Panera has become my second home...the more i come, the more i love it.

i'm doing Beth Moore's study on Esther with the women at church. so far, i love it. the only problem is that the time conflicts with Taekwondo. i'm still deciding what to do about that.

i'm a huge fan of panera's new parfait. it's awesome.

and now, for the rest of the review book.

I saw what I saw

watch this.

Saturday, January 24, 2009


I'm sitting in my living room on my couch with my computer and my roommate and i'm so happy! i'm even a tiny bit glad to see the cat (only because she happens to be in my house)...haha! It's great to be home! I do miss Becca, though...a lot. Tonight I ate dinner with my roommate, Shannon, Nan, and Kelly...we ate Chinese-ish food (go figure) complete with homemade egg rolls that Shannon learned how to make in Turkey..ha! they're GREAT!

Anyways, more pictures, it's time for bed!

Monday, January 19, 2009

mcdonalds breakfast, foot massages, and movie marathons!

Yay for another day in China! Today was our day of "relaxation" but as you can see by our awesome photos, we did tons of fun things!

We had an early start with breakfast and time with Father at McDonalds! We experienced some interesting "only in China" moments such as the Ham and Egg McPuff pictured here. :) it was yummy! We also got these little sweepstakes cards and won free things! Becca won a cool coca-cola glass and I won a free Fanta!

We wandered around Nanchang yet again and found some cool shops and I bought this SWEET hairclip!
Today I got to meet Becca's best friend in China, Nancy! She works here with Becca and is really sweet...we ate lunch with her and her fiance (as of today!) and then went and got the most amazing foot massages ever! They gave us tea, then soaked our feet in tea while they massaged our shoulders and back and then they massaged our feet for 45 minutes! (all for only 4 dollars!!!!) I couldn't help but think of how much Alisa and Grandmommie would LOVE the foot massage the entire time they were rubbing my feet! :)

We concluded our day with some fruit shopping, some very American spaghetti for dinner, and a Jane Austen movie marathon during which we ate some yummy, but greasy popcorn with very Chinese of us :)

no worries, more exciting Chinese adventures to come...

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Korean food and candy strawberries!

Today, after sleeping in of course, we rode an empty bus downtown for another adventure! (This bus is usually packed out with standing room only in the morning, but all the students are home for the Spring festival so we got seats!) Our goals were: eat amazing Korean food and buy fruits and veggies. Anyone surprised that we did SO much more? :) Our first stop was the Korean restaurant as ordered by our growling stomachs...we went with our Indonesian sisters Gloria and Wendi...they were so fun! We had a great time hanging out and experiencing downtown Nanchang together!
After our delicious meal, we wandered around town, went to visit Gloria's fiance Michael, and ended up going to get donuts! They were actually semi-normal with REAL chocolate on them...yum!

We then met one of the other American teachers and his little boy for coffee...during this little coffee excursion at a really nice restaurant called "The Coffee Club", Anthony, the 13 month old managed to destroy nearly everything on the was amusing, to say the least. After he warmed up to us, he loved the mango milkshake I got as well as the Banana split that Wendi was quite the adventure!

After that, we went shopping at Wal-mart and bought some amazing fruits and veggies and some other random groceries...the grocery store in China is so interesting...there were a trillion people there today, i think...

I discovered some new favorites today...I don't know if i've mentioned this but the street food in China is incredible...we've bought tons of amazing things but today, we happened upon fresh strawberries dipped in candy (kinda like a candied apple, only better) on a get 6 strawberries for 5 yuan which is less than a was maybe one of the best things i've ever tasted...i'll take a picture tomorrow when we get it again :)

I've gotten a lot of really cool souvenirs and can't wait to give them to everyone!

Anyways, things are going well...It's been so good to be with Becca here...and I've been learning a lot about the Father's love for me and how deep it is...I've had such sweet time with him here in China...This morning I was reading from james about our passions warring within us and how easy it is to be distracted by so many other things warring for our prayer today amidst the busy streets, the noise, the pollution, the overstimulation, and the chinese that I can't even begin to understand, has been "give me one pure and holy know and follow hard after you"...

Friday, January 16, 2009

the REAL China

What a fun day we had today! We went downtown with a student to shop and it was very cool...I feel like I really experienced China today in a way that I hadn't before. We went to a hole in the wall restaurant that Becca affectionately calls the "Point and Shoot" because there are just a bunch of plates sitting out and you just point to what you's awesome. It was SO yummy, maybe my favorite meal yet in China...we got sauteed onions and egg with white rice and some other yummy stuff, too...and despite its awesomeness, it only cost 3 dollars for 3 of us to eat...that's right, a 1 dollar meal...if only that existed in America!

After lunch, we went shopping in a market-type place that was insane...Praise Father we had J there to bargain for us! I don't know what we would've done...but it was very "Chinese" :) and exciting, though simultaneously exhausting...I got some GREAT deals, though!
the marketplace--this picture does not do justice to the coolness of this experience by any means..
Becca and J on the walking street where we found the coolest earrings ever!
De-stimulating after an insane day of shopping!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

and then we had the busiest day yet!

today was supposed to be our "downtime" day but we ended up packing it with time with students since they are all leaving was so fun! We met a group of 9 girls this morning and received a bouquet of bears...yes, small teddy bears...interesting, no? Then we met a brother and sister for lunch at the Muslim noodle restaurant...yummy! I'm becoming rather adept at noodles with chopsticks, believe it or not. Then we went to visit the students dorms...It was not at all what I was expecting...they live 4 to a room smaller than our dorms at PC with no AC or heat, no matresses, no washer or dryer (they wash clothes by hand and hang them outside to dry)...but they welcomed us with great joy and gave us fresh tangerines and seaweed crackers...we were also presented with white Tibetan silky scarves that are given only to the most honored visitors. We looked at pictures of families and hometowns and Chinese tradition while hearing stories and songs of growing up in China. It is so encouraging to see the Father at work here in many of the same ways that He is working in the US...through beautiful, rich relationships and precious community..

We went to downtown Nanchang tonight with one of Becca's best Chinese friends...I feel like I've known her forever! It was so fun! We went to this restaurant for "hot pot" which is kind of like fondu but very's basically a vat of seasoned oil that you cook vegetables and meat in and then eat them...I had things like Lotus root, glutinous rice, chinese potato, spinach, crinkly tofu, mutton, etc...lots of interesting yummy goodness! Also, I drank a pepsi, which was absolutely amazing :) After dinner, we headed to McDonalds for ice cream sundays and fountain drinks (with ICE!)...on the way across town, we stumbled upon fresh pineapple on a stick...apparently pineapple are crazy cheap here, half a huge pineapple for 1 yuan (1/6 of a dollar) yep, cheap and SOOO yummy!

We traversed the night life to make it to the huge square in the middle of town for the music, light, and fountain show where they play traditional Chinese songs and the fountain "dances"...we had fun making fools of ourselves in the middle of the square dancing around and singing...everyone already thinks we're crazy foreigners anyways, what do we have to lose?? :)

By the time we were ready to leave town, only one bus was running and everyone else was trying to leave case you didn't know, there are a lot of people in China. This bus was the msot packed bus I've ever, ever seen...I taught our Chinese friend the meaning of "Sardines"...also, we almost died because our driver was insane...he took turns at full speed with a FULL bus...we literally tipped onto 2 wheels and thought we were going to fly off the road...thankfully, by the grace of Father, we made it back alive to tell the story..

it's cold and late so i think we're heading to bed...hope all is well in America!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

and then we had a Chinese welcome party!

It is very Chinese to sing and dance for eachother at a party so Becca and I serenaded our guests with many songs on the guitar! We sang Starry Host, O Love That Will Not Let Me Go, Ice Ice Baby, Silent Night (they love Christmas music)...and lots of others. We also shagged for them to "Carolina Girls"! They LOVED it and a few of them were willing to learn was great fun!
These girls sang me a Chinese welcome song! They were so sweet! They also brought me gifts to welcome me to China...I felt so special, almost like a celebrity!
This is everyone that came and all of our refreshments. We made them Banana bread which they was gone in the first 5 minutes. Crystal light was also a big hit...powder that turns to a wonderful drink! :)
We've had many visitors since I got here because the students are getting ready to leave campus for their winter holiday. This morning we woke up early to meet some students who brought Becca presents and then we sang some songs and talked about many things...
The people here are precious and very sweet and considerate...all of them have just happened to notice that my favorite color is green! One girl met me one day and the next day I saw her she had knitted me a beautiful green scarf...amazing! I mentioned one day that I loved the gloves that have the fingers cut out but you can pull the cover over to make mittens and the next day a girl brought me some of my own! Talk about feeling special and humbled by people thinking for you and enjoying your company...
it's been amazing to be with Becca and to see her life here in China...what a gift that the Father would open doors to let me come halfway across the world!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

sugar cookies and rickshaws!

Making sugar cookies in China!! They taste SO good!!
we rode with friends in the rickshaw to my first authentic Chinese lunch! yum!
China's great! more to come...

Monday, January 12, 2009

Travelling the World!

Becca and I holding our gifts of chocolate from our new Chinese friend!

Yay for travelling the World and see the Lord in so many new and different ways!

there's so much to say about the past 10 days that it overwhelms me to think about summing it up but slowly, i'll do it...

right now, i'm in China with Becca...We made it to Nanchang after 24 hours in Shanghai (the big city!). I spent one night in Shanghai by myself in a really fancy hotel near the airport...Becca and I got the dates mixed up so I was on my own for 24 first, i was scared but it ended up being really sweet time with the Lord and a great time of rest for me...such a great testimony of how well our God knows us and knows what we need...Our time in Shanghai was full of the fancy airport, the Maglev (a super fast train), the captain's hostel, dinner at Papa John's (ha!) with some Chinese friends, Cold stone ice cream!, a good night's sleep, lunch at a french baguette shop, a long crazy subway ride, a chaotic train station, and a long train ride on which we met two great Chinese girls who were so fun and sweet! I've learned so much about Chinese culture already and I've only been here 2 days! My favorite thing so far is that Chinese people love to share anything they have...we shared food with the two girls on the train even though we had just met them! I love that!!

It's cold here...a drastic contrast to India where it was 85 degrees or hotter the entire time...China and India are the same in a lot of ways and so very different in others...

more to come...