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Showing posts from 2016

The one where she called out the good

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At 2pm yesterday, I had an unexpected surprise. A dear friend of mine from Texas let me know her schedule had shifted a little and she was in DC, free for the evening, and wanted to see if I was free.

Was. I. Ever.

I made a quick reservation at Founding Farmers (always proof God loves you when you get a last minute reservation at this place) and finished up my work day.

I met Rachel at the restaurant, got the best Texas-sized hug, and sat down at our table. I looked across at her and said "We are talking about ALL THE THINGS. So much to catch up on. Are you ready for this?"

Five years prior- almost to the very day- Rachel had come to my apartment in Texas, coffee in hand at 9pm, and helped me pack up before I left the next day for my new job in Florida. Since then, we've talked a few times, we've met up a few times when I've been in Texas, but for the most part- we had a LOT to catch up on.

After dinner, we did a nighttime stroll through the memorials (my favorit…

The one about a pastor's role

When you grow up as a pastor's kid, the idea of a 'pastor' looks a little different to you.

When you grow up as a pastor's kid in the middle of East Texas, it looks a lot different to you.

Growing up, I attended a church where everyone knew everyone. We knew all the people, knew their families, knew their jobs, knew their lives. When life was hard, we rallied. When life was good, we celebrated. No one was excluded from this circle. There was no one in our congregation that didn't have full access to my family. And I loved that. We were a community of about 150 people. And it was good.

For my first church experience in college, I hoped to find and recreate something similar.  I didn't mind a big church. That only meant I got to know more people. I babysat for pastor's and their kids. I found myself in their homes for family dinners. I easily found my way into the lives of my pastors and their families. But then again, when your dad is a pastor- the pastor…

The one with the closed chapter

Today will close one of the most exciting and rewarding chapters in my life.

Five years ago I came to the Foundation bright-eyed and very green.

I didn’t know much about ‪#‎EdReform‬ but I knew social media. Jaryn saw that as an asset and gave me a chance to make it in the big leagues.

I left my home and all the people I loved in Texas and moved to Tallahassee Florida to take a chance on a social media gig with an education reform organization I didn’t know much about.

The Tallahassee team made me feel welcomed, loved, and appreciated. They didn’t just make sure I knew EdReform, they made sure I had things to do, people to see, and places to visit. Mary Laura took me out one weekend with her daughter to the ‘Tallahassee Zoo’…. Jaryn invited me to watch the World Series (Go Rangers!) with her family, Alexis became my running partner, Erin Price hosted an Oscars party, Clare Crowson helped me find the best diet Dr Pepper close the office. You get the point. The ExcelinEd team invited me…

The one about Phase 10

I played Phase 10 with friends this weekend. If you are not familiar with the game, here's a little insight.

It is a card game and there are 10 phases. For every round, each person individually has an opportunity to advance to the next phase. You play until one person reaches phase 10 and conquers it.

While playing, some people might be on phase 1 while others are on advanced phases. There are additional cards to be used… A wild, and a skip card. When using the skip card, the person playing the card can choose who they want to skip. Typically the skip card is used on the person who is on the highest level, or the person who is about to win the round. Other times, it is used out of spite.

While playing this weekend, I used the skip card on a person who was on phase 1, while others were more advanced. It did not make sense to anyone. But once I explained, I think they understood a little more. One person had just been skipped, one person I had previously used the card on earlier, an…

The one with the cheer squad

Five years ago I ran my first half marathon in San Diego. My uncle had called me in January of 2012 and told me he was planing to run the full marathon and if I wanted to run the half, he would pay for my airfare out to Cali. That seemed like a pretty sweet deal, although it was a VERY tough decision. I don't make decisions lightly and I don't go back on my word. So if I was going to say yes, there would be no backing out. I really WOULD be running 13.1 miles. California seemed great, but the running part was going to be tricky. I found a training plan that seemed doable, talked myself into it, and said "yes!"

I will never forget that moment, crossing the finish line. Actually, I will never forget each mile of that race. Remembering how I felt, how nervous I was to see if I would actually be able to do it. I had only trained up to 10 miles and that race would be the first time my body had ever gone 13.1 miles.

This weekend, almost to the exact day, I ran my 5th half …

The one about singleness

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Saturday night, our campus pastor asked me if I would be willing to sit on a panel his wife would be hosting. To talk about singleness.

He and his wife are leading a May-term small group on Love, Sex, and Dating. With no offense to them, I really thought there might be 20 or 25 people in attendance. So I agreed. 
Robin sent over a few questions she planned to ask the panelists which gave us good direction to gather our thoughts, put some notes together, and come prepared. Sunday morning I was enjoying a full day of rest... you know the kind. NOTHING on the agenda. No plans. No responsibility. No commitments. The only thing I had to do was to stay in my pj's, drink copious amounts of coffee, and read a book. (Oh wait. You only know these kinds of days if you're single. Forgive me.) 
I was in my oversized chair with my journal, bible, a cup of coffee. (And my cell phone....because, honesty.) I started taking some notes and quickly realized that I have a LOT to share on this subj…

The one post-Greece

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I wrote some post-Greece thoughts for my friend's blog. You can check it out on Facebook: P327 or by clicking on the picture below.

Refugees

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My church, National Community, has a very unique opportunity to return to the Greek/Macedonian border (Idomeni) to serve alongside the A21 Campaign.
Since last year, almost 1 million refugees have passed through this particular border crossing. While they are waiting to cross, there is no food/water available. Many of them stand in line for days with nothing but what they have on their being. The line of people stretches farther than our eyes can see. Right now, over 14,000 people are stuck at this particular border.  
I've been given the opportunity to join a team of 10 people to help pass out supplies and meet the physical needs of those who are waiting to cross. 
We will leave Wednesday April 6th and return Thursday April 14th.
This seemed like an opportunity I couldn't pass on. I normally wouldn't make such a big decision so quickly but my work has graciously allowed me the time off on such short notice. This isn't one of those trips that we say "oh, I can go ano…

The one with the house that didn't exist

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In December, my roommate of three years and I knew it was time to move out of our apartment. Rent kept going up and it didn't seem the best option to continue living there anymore.

We began the search and made plans to look for one and two bedroom places, knowing our time as roommates could be coming to a close as well.

We turned in our paperwork at the leasing office and had an official "you gotta be out" day on March 4th. Two months. That didn't seem like much time to find something.

I knew what kind of place I wanted. I also knew that sort of place didn't exist in DC, for the price I needed it to be.

We looked at several two bedroom places with significantly less space than our apartment currently had. One of them was so much of a hole, none of the closets had rods in them to hang clothes on....because they were so narrow a hanger wouldn't even FIT in it. Yeah. We found some holes.

I looked at several one bedrooms. One in particular was on the high end of …

The one with the revelation

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I had a revelation this weekend that is so elementary I almost feel silly sharing it with you.

I've actually had a couple of those recently. I'll start with the one I REALLY shouldn't share- and then move to the one that I'll share simply in case it might encourage you. 
I was dropping off a few items at the dry cleaner a couple months ago, when I looked around and realized I didn't see any washing machines, etc. The sweater I was leaving behind for them to take care of was one that REALLY could not go in the washing machine. As I walked away, I had the realization... (yes, I'm truly about to admit this on my public blog).... that's why it's a DRY cleaner. Water is not used. Hmmm. 31 years old and just making that connection. Now. There is a solvent used at the cleaners, but I'd recommend for your own sanity you not google that mess. Trust me.  
But seriously. I walked around for probably the next 24 hours baffled at how I could just be having that …

The one with a good surprise

I'm a sucker for a good surprise. Always have been, most likely always will be. I love when an author can write a story line in such a way that keeps me guessing until the last minute. I've been known to yell out loud while reading when such a surprise happens. I'll keep reading the book even if I guess the plot/villain from chapter 1, but it's more exciting to read when I don't know the outcome. Granted, I always like a good ending. But still.

The surprise I remember most clearly was on my 26th birthday. Two friends were taking me to dinner. I had a hunch a few other friends would "surprisingly" be at the restaurant. And they were. Then in walked my parents. Wasn't expecting that. We went to Laura's house after dinner for dessert and I had a hunch a couple more people would be around. And when I walked in- I was STUNNED. The room was full of people. I thought that was it. They did it. They surprised me.

But then.

Out came the biggest surprise. Yo…