life lately…

life lately…

+ to say i’ve been busy would be an understatement. the last few weeks have been packed with weddings, sickness, cleaning, hanging out with friends, traveling, and did i mention being sick?

+ two weekends ago i was blessed to be in a wedding of a good friend of mine. kaylee, ashlee, & myself were like sisters – from the ages of 13-17 we were together every weekend, spent most week days and nights together (we went to the same school), had crushes on the same guys, got in fights, were grounded by each others parents, etc. seeing kaylee marry a man that she is truly in love with was beautiful. i also danced my butt off at that reception!

+ this past week was a blur. i got home from kaylees out of town wedding, and immediately got sick with some kind of stomach grossness that is making its way around town. (i also gave it to maria – yay!) tuesday was the first day i started feeling better – i went to training (for my workout!) then got home and realized i hadn’t watered my plants in forever. this was the exact moment a wasp stung me. i have a more severe allergic reaction to wasp stings than the normal person – so i jumped inside took two benadryl and then geeked out the rest of the night. bleh. i struggled with the wasp sting until friday when i finally went to the doctor and had them give me some antibiotics – that made me sick.

+ i’ve been saying “NO” to my desire to pull down the halloween decorations all month. however next week starts october, which means i’m pulling them down tonight. MUAHAHA {remember how much i love halloween?!}

+ i’m also down to 12-ish & under minute mile y’all! granted i haven’t run much this past week/weekend due to my schedule and being sick – so i could be back up. ūüôĀ BUT progress is progress.

+ God is hashing some things out with me – and i need them. attempting to figure out what is next in life is hard & challenging.

+ i send my brother weird and unflattering picture text messages…

+ tobi is back to urinating outside of his box. ūüôĀ i’m very frustrated with him. i dont think he has another uti, i freaking hope not. i dont have the $$ to take him to a vet so lets just hope he’s being prissy and a jerk and not sick.

+ we got a keureg. for $30. YUP. my roommate’s job has their own craigslist type deal and she found a perfect condition keureg for sale – hollaaaaaa. we’ve needed a new coffee maker since the pot in our last one shattered about 2 weeks ago. caffeine withdrawals are real people.

+ i’ve been struggling with my singleness and relationship issues lately. i’m thankful for the accountability God has surrounded me with in real life and in blog land. i’m thankful for the prayers y’all have prayed, the questions you’ve asked, and the ability to be just as vulnerable and real with me as i am with you. i might write more about it this frankly friday – or i might not, i haven’t really decided yet.

+ i’m really excited to have the #etsyswap2013 reveal post go live this thursday. so if you participated make sure you take your pictures, write up a post, and hit PUBLISH on thursday & swing on by and link up!

+ just in case you missed it – you’re welcome.

+ so life lately has been…crazy. & if i’m keeping it real my life is a hot ugly mess at times (ahem currently). i put on a happy smile, continue to post about positive things; but if i’m honest y’all – life gets hard, and i just happen to be in one of those ‘hard places’. i’m working through some things and reflecting & examining my heart – seeing where God is moving in all of this, while being honest with myself and others…conviction is never easy friends.

joining jenni for her blogtember linkup 

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September 19…creative writing

To say i was dreading the dinner party would be the understatement of the century…

I mean really, who wants to be surrounded by the most headache inducing group of people to ever step into a room? There was Samuel – total narcissist; seriously, the guy absolutely loves talking about himself “Oh you enjoy cricket? I was the top scoring cricket player at…” dude who cares? Next in line? The lovely rude Tanya; and wouldn’t you know it i got to sit next to her highness – happy happy joy joy. I couldn’t wait to be told how unflattering my dress was.
Across the table was Timothy, he was nice enough, just too eager to please everyone. His constant blabbering about how he thought everyone looked ravishing came across as too thick and too fake. Cynthia was sitting next to him – center of attention Cynthia. She always had to be involved in everyones conversation regardless if she know what they were talking about. Lets see who we have left, Freddie; I think every dinner party has a Freddie. He holds his fork a little too tight – like he’s caging a beast inside, rarely talks, stares at you for a little longer than niceties allow – just a hair more than socially awkward to keep things interesting. The best part about Freddie? Timothy brought him to be my date…yeah…thats going to work out.
If I’m going to continue to be brutally honest about the guests I can’t stop without dissecting myself.
I’m what you would call a typical – hmm – snarky, hard eyed, spicy mouthed individual, with a dash of cynicism and fairy wings. Delightful right?
So while I’m known to spark some tantalizing conversations, being surrounded by the circus at dinner tonight, i’ve been doing my best to hold my tongue. I’ve lost the battle a few times, but that’s better than a lot of times. Truthfully it has been rather entertaining, still dreadful, but entertaining none the less, and we’ve only had the appetizers.

joining jenni for her blogtember linkup 

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September 17 – a memory you would love to relive.

a memory you would love to relive… {there are so many}

The air in the house was stifling.
July was bleeding into August with a fiery haze.
Windows were open, ceiling fans cranked high, glasses of iced water littered the kitchen table.
I walked into the den to find my father laying on the ground in his shorts with his arms splayed out, a stack of cds leaning at his feet, listening to some classic rock.
What are you doing dad?
He patted the carpet next to him. I laid down, splayed my arms out, and listened to the guitar solos with him. Do you know who the bassist in this band is? he asked. He always asked this; or the drummer, guitarist, lead singer. It was a running game – if we guessed right he would buy us a SoBe at our next gas station visit. I don’t know…i replied. He laughed and explained the guys talent and what the background of the band was.
At some point in this conversation my brother had walked into the room and laid down opposite of me with his head butting up against mine. The three of us laid there for a song more when mom walked in.
I wondered where y’all went, i should have known we would take a music break.
We were supposed to be cleaning.
She laid down with us and listened to the music.
There we were, a family, listening to music, building faint memories.

. . .

Dang it all, Jennifer won again. She always won…i think she was cheating. It was summer time and we were at our family beach house for the week. Sand still wedged in between my toes even though the sun had set long before. My cousins surrounded our table with decks of cards sprawled out in front of us. Another round? Jonathan asked. It was already after 1am and past a few of our bedtimes; but this is what we did during the summer – got sunburned, played rummy, ate too many bags of chips, went ghost crab hunting, played bingo, and built memories. We heard one of our parents slip out of their room and stand in front of us, Do y’all know what time it is? ….just one more game! Someone has to beat jennifer! The score sheet showed that she was a solid 50 points ahead of all of us. I looked around the table, jennifer, jonathan, jason, jade, ty, and bo, and a friend or two scattered throughout. This was so fun, staying up late – playing cards – getting frustrated – laughing. My hand closed around my sweet tea glass, condensation dripping between my fingers, i need a refill, anyone else? Everyone else needed a refill, as always … grandma’s sweet tea was just too good.

. . .
joining jenni today for her blogtember challenge.

{etsy crushes link-up tomorrow}
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September 10…Life Changing Moment.

Q: Describe a distinct moment when your life took a turn…{i have 2}

It was really hot for the middle of July Рlike really hot.
Mom was at work, my brother and cousin Jade were at the neighborhood pool behind my house. I was sitting in the lazy boy recliner with the tv on eating a big ol’ bowl of ice cream…something I was not¬†supposed to be doing. I heart the front door open – crap mom is home early¬†– I stashed my bowl beside the recliner where it couldn’t be seen, I really didn’t want a lecture. I heard two sets of heels, my mom walked into the den followed by my aunt darlene. “Amy, where are Bo & Jade?” …uhhh down at the pool?¬†i answered. “Go get them please”. I thought i was in more trouble than just sneaking ice cream. what have I done now?¬†I thought as I walked down to the pool.
I got Bo & Jade to come back up to the house – they kept asking me what was happening…I didn’t know, I couldn’t answer. When we got back to the house, Aunt Darlene held jades hand and pulled her to the living room – mom took me and Bo back to her & my fathers room. At this point my parents had been separated for a small season – trying to work some things out together while needing some space to do it, it was a complicated situation. Mom sat down on her bed and put her head in her hands, she took a few deep breathes. I remember her sitting up straighter – looking back now I could only imagine her trying to gain some courage and strengthen her spine to deliver the news. We sat in front of her, Indian style, and just looked at each other. What was going on?¬†Mom took our hands in hers and said “You know I love you…you know Jesus loves you…and you know your daddy loved¬†you…” I was only 13 at the time but I was old enough to pick up on that one small letter…that ‘d’ that changed a word from present to past tense.
She said loved not love.
“Your daddy has gone to be with Jesus – he is in Jesus’ arms.” I remember Bo busted out in to tears; at 9 years old not fully understanding what that meant, but knowing enough to know that Jesus is in Heaven…and that is where Dad must be too now. I sat there for a minute just looking at my mom – stunned, not fully understanding…not really wanting¬†to understand. Does this mean I’m fatherless?¬†Where is my dad?¬†He just wanted to see me a few days ago…but I wanted to hang out with my girlfriends.
The tears came slowly.
I was 13 years old – less than a month from starting high school – and I was now without a father.
Mom had been sick for over 6 months now.
I hated cancer – leukemia.
The summer and fall had consisted of hospital visits, phone calls, and a brief season where she was home for two weeks. I was living with my aunt & uncle some days/weeks and others I was living at home – too anxiety ridden to be away from what was comfortable to me, what was my normal. My grandmother (mom’s mom) stayed with my mom every. single. day while she was in the hospital and my grandfather stayed with me most nights (some other family members/friends stayed other nights). Some nights I remember going to sleep to the sound of an empty house…hearing my own heart beat…wondering what was next.¬†The night before I was at youth group. We prayed for my mom. All of my friends and youth leaders surrounded me, laying their hands on me, prayed for me, my family, my mother. At one point my friend Niki said, “God, if Mrs. Donna is meant to be with you…then that’s ok, she can go be with you.” I remember being furious¬†with Niki, how could she say that…that was like wishing my mom to die. My friend Andrew prayed something similar…I was still angry.
That night I was laying in bed, my next door neighbor aunt Gayle was staying with me that night (my brother had been living with my aunt and uncle), and I prayed to God. I finally¬†understood what He had been pressing on my heart. You see, I was down to one parent – my mom – she was in the hospital for my 16th birthday, promising a “blowout 17th” for the next year. She still heckled me to clean my room…and do dishes, and learn how to cook something other than mac and cheese from a box. She still talked to me about Jesus and asked how school was going – how was I doing with my grades – all while she was confined to a hospital bed.
At this point mom had been in a coma in the ICU for about a month…I hadn’t seen her. I had the choice, but my family warned me that she didn’t look like herself. She had put on a lot of water weight (my mom was a petit 5’3 115lb woman), her eyes had gone from brown to blue, she had lost her hair a long time ago…my mother wasn’t herself. So I didn’t go, I didn’t want to see her like that at age 16.
As I was thinking about all of that, I whispered some words to Jesus.
Jesus…I’m ok if you take my mom.
I don’t want her to be in pain anymore, if she will be better with you in Heaven – then I’m ok with it, I won’t like it, I’ll miss her….I really¬†want her to stay with me and Bo…but I’ll be ok.
I fell asleep.
Hands were on my shoulders, my body was slowly being shaken awake, “Amy, wake up”.
My eyelids peeled open, my bedside table lamp was on.
My grandmother was sitting at my side. As my eyes adjusted I looked around my room – Aunt Darlene, Aunt Diane, Aunt Debbie, grandma…my Aunt Darlenes eyes gave it away; she had the same eyes when she walked in with my mother to tell me my father had passed away. My grandmother opened her mouth, “Amy, your mother went to be with Jesus, she is in Jesus’ arms…” I remember becoming fascinated with the popcorn ceiling in my room. “Mom, do you think she heard us?” …one of my aunts said. ¬†“I’m an orphan?”¬†I said out-loud. They all started crying – I started crying. Where is Bo? does he know yet?¬†They told me he was at my aunts house – still sleeping – it was 3am and they were trying to let him sleep some more but they wanted me to know, to wake up. I went out into the den where my grandfather was sobbing, my aunt gayle and uncle dave were crying, my moms boyfriend was there in pieces. I remember going back to my room, sitting on my bed, and being silent for a long time – thinking I’m only 16, what do I do now?¬†I remember 530am rolling around and my friend Ashlee calling to see if was running late or on time since I was her and kaylees ride to school. I told her I wasn’t going – she asked why – because my mom died. She started crying – asking if I wanted her to come over, no, not right now…but thank you. They came over later as did many other friends and family. I won’t go into detail today about when we told my brother later that morning – but that was almost as hard as hearing I was parentless.

Tragedy happens.
Joy happens.
You learn from both.
I’ve learned from both.
I miss my parents – every. single. day.
Some days are easier than others – some days harder than others.
I find solace in the fact that God knows more than I do.
His plans are greater than my own.
And glory was brought to Him through their passings…people heard the Gospel through their lives.
Jesus was preached.
I’m sure people were saved – or put on the road to salvation.
I’ve trusted in God through all of this – I will continue to trust in Him.

Joining jenni today for her blogtember challenge.


pass on some useful advice or information you have learned and always remembered…
When writing this post i found it really hard to not write a novel of quotes or tell your stories of times i was taught a lesson. The truth is in my short 24 years i have learned more than i thought i would. 
I’ve learned while sitting in a classroom, drinking a cup of coffee with a group of friends, crying over a broken heart, being disciplined by those who love me, learning how to breathe through the sorrow, and being able to remain joyful even when its hard. 
. . .
The truth is as long as you’re open to it – you can constantly be learning. 
I wanted to share just a small select few of my favorite quotes/lyrics
^i’m not sure where i read this – i had it written down in my old journal.
 . . .
 . . .
. . .
One more for good measure: 
My mom always told me that when satan starts wrecking your world to count it as joy.
Because when satan is wearing you down – distracting you; it’s because he is fearful of the good God is going to do through you. If you’re not being attacked, evaluate your relationship with Jesus. 
joining jenni for her blogtember link up.

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