Friday, December 31, 2010

New Year's Resolutions

#1...Get moving. I have some goals (professionally, maybe writing someday, speaking more, the Mr. Right question), and nothing is going to happen unless I take more steps towards them. So...I'll be getting busy (busier...haha).
#2...Put "worth" in the right place. I get better and better all the time, but I still have a few places where I let the reactions and/or treatment of others make a statement about my worth. That doesn't need to happen anymore. I'll be taking active steps to not "rock my own boat" so much.
#3...Get my tone back. I've already started on this track, but I'll continue. Getting in shape, Baby. Yum.
#4...Hopefully not countering #3...haha!...I plan to experience more foreign cuisine. I ate Nepali food recently, and that fun fire was reignited!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Don't Mess with Beatrix Kiddo

Absolutely NOT movies for the kiddos...but I have to admit a secret...Shh!...I loved the Kill Bill movies...Ya, I wrote that small so it could maybe continue to be a secret. Hehe. I bought my very own Samurai sword after seeing these. Mine' ;)

Head Massager Heaven

Have you seen this before? It's a Kikkerland Head Massager. One of my students gave one to me for Christmas, and I LOVE it! It feels so good that I could actually consider thumping my leg like a...happy doggy. HAHA! It's heavenly!!!

The Relator

One of the other aspects that I enjoy about the Strengthsfinders Assessment is the appreciation it encourages for strengths other than your own. Thankfully, God designed us to function as a "body"...a no one person has the strengths necessary to run the whole show. Basically, we need each other...and need to understand the giftings in others.

What it also helps me to do is realize that all strengths have their "down-sides" depending on use. First, we don't always understand that the behavior of a person could actually be the expression of a strength. It's a good reminder to step back before judging. Second, people sometimes misuse their strengths in places where others could administer more effectively and/or they over-exert a strength in a time of desperation (making it need-driven rather than naturally expressed). And third, it also helps me understand myself and that some of my "norms" aren't always understood by those around me.

Here's one that tends to get me in "misunderstood" trouble! Surfacy-talk is actually not a favorite of mine. I quickly run out of things to talk about, and I think it makes people think I'm not interested in them. The truth is that I'm actually a Relator, and I'm usually VERY interested in the people in my life. It's just that I tend to be interested in...this...

"Relator describes your attitude toward your relationships. In simple terms, the Relator theme pulls you toward people you already know. You do not necessarily shy away from meeting new people−in fact, you may have other themes that cause you to enjoy the thrill of turning strangers into friends−but you do derive a great deal of pleasure and strength from being around your close friends. You are comfortable with intimacy. Once the initial connection has been made, you deliberately encourage a deepening of the relationship. You want to understand their feelings, their goals, their fears, and their dreams; and you want them to understand yours. You know that this kind of closeness implies a certain amount of risk−you might be taken advantage of−but you are willing to accept that risk. For you a relationship has value only if it is genuine. And the only way to know that is to entrust yourself to the other person. The more you share with each other, the more you risk together. The more you risk together, the more each of you proves your caring is genuine. These are your steps toward real friendship, and you take them willingly."

Ya, it can get a little tricky sometimes because others aren't always interested in that. Ha! Life is so complicated!! ;)

Strengthsfinders Assessment

If you haven't had your "strengths" assessed, you should really consider the Strengthsfinders test. It evaluates you for your Top 5 strengths out of a possible 34 themes. Very fascinating!! To do so, you have to purchase the book. Inside is a code to access the online test. Included in the book are further descriptions of the strengths and how a person can use them (and in cooperation with other people's strengths) to maximize individual and/or corporate potential.

Here are mine!

Belief - People strong in the Belief theme have certain core values that are unchanging. Out of these values emerges a defined purpose for their life.

Connectedness - People strong in the Connectedness theme have faith in the links between all things. They believe there are few coincidences and that almost every event has a reason.

Empathy - People strong in the Empathy theme can sense the feelings of other people by imagining themselves in others' lives or others' situations.

Relator - People who are strong in the Relator theme enjoy close relationships with others. They find deep satisfaction in working hard with friends to achieve a goal.

Strategic - People strong in the Strategic theme create alternative ways to proceed. Faced with any given scenario, they can quickly spot the relevant patterns and issues.

The other one that comes back to my Top 5 on occasion (I've taken it a few times now) is the following:

Harmony - People strong in the Harmony theme look for consensus. They don't enjoy conflict; rather, they seek areas of agreement.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010


It's hard to not get frustrated sometimes. I find myself hoping that people are different and then I start to find out... Ya, you get where I'm going.


Please, please, please pray for the brother of a friend of mine. He found out that he has cancer. They could really use a miracle.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010


I wasn't super impressed with the official video, but I love the lyrics. Here's a words-only version. :)

Monday, December 27, 2010


Many know that I maintain a Life List. Some may refer to such a thing as a Bucket List, and mine is much the same except that my list includes items of all shapes and sizes. I have bigger goals, but I also include smaller things that I want to learn, see or do. Sometimes God totally surprises me with opportunities to cross an adventure off the list. Trying my first cannoli was one of cool! Other times...especially like "down times" during vacation...I pull out the list and choose a "do-able" item. Hence...knitting. I used to knit like crazy when I was younger, and I loved it. Alas, my old age set in...hehe...and it is time to re-learn. I found a gal online (see below), and she's going to help me get started. I also have the Knitting Wonder, Leanne, at work, and I plan to ask her as well! Here goes! :)

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Nose Prints

I get nervous when I find myself in the situation of "nose pressed against the glass". You know those moments of great anticipation when we were younger where we'd sit by the window excitedly waiting for whatever good thing was coming? That's what I mean...and I think my "glass" is literally frosted with nose prints. ;)

It's not a bad situation in the least. Stuff happens understandably. Just one where I noticed my hopes rising.

And when that happens???...oh boy, am I in trouble!

Why? When you open yourself up to anticipation, you also open the door to disappointment. Not that it's bad...It's a very good thing!!! A lot of people, for fear of loss, never allow themselves to hope. But, you know...the reality is that hope often clouds our broad perspective, letting us forget about the other possibilities that maybe aren't as desirable and making the inevitable loss a bit of a surprise. Maybe that's how hope is supposed to be though...more excited "for" a situation than rational. A nose with a little frost bite on the end. ;)

It's a good test, I think. For what will our response be? In my opinion withdrawal is never an option. Life without hope is no life at all...even with the possibility of disappointment. Ha!...I guess I'd rather be a hope-FULL fool than a logical pessimist.

Alright. Off to grab a bandaid and head back to the window! :)

Friday, December 24, 2010

Jesus Born On This Day

The Christmas Road to Eden

We begin the celebration of Christmas tomorrow, the holiday commemorating the birth of Christ. And, of course, what many acknowledge is the shadow of the cross over the sweetness of the manger...that Jesus' birth was the beginning of the march toward his death for our sins.

Many Christians are satisfied with that as the complete story, and their lives are framed around it. They are sinners, saved by grace.

Ohhhh, but there is so much more!

The sweet little baby...the suffering Hero of our hearts...point us all the way back to our human beginning. The garden where a man and a woman walked with God...where He told them who they were...where they believed in and knew His goodness. Their lives were framed around it. They were sons and daughters marked by destiny.

As you sit in the experience of the manger this year, may you hear the beckoning of our beginning and continue on the Christmas Road to Eden.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Fantastic Movie Interchange

Felipe: "You know what you are? You are slender and elegant at a distance, but up close you are round and fleshy..." *big smile*

Liz: "Thank God for Brazilians!!"

Haha! I love it!

And another...

Liz: "I'm so sick of everyone telling me that I need a man!"

Felipe: "You don't need a man, Liz! You need a champion!"

*sigh* :)

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Peopled Out!

It's been a crazy week! And a short one at that!!! I swear my introvert side is screaming for a break!! I'm going to be people-free for a chunk of hours to revitalize the soul. Shhh! ;)

Be Who You Are Made To Be

I think it's good to pause once in a while and remember who 'you' are. Be that gal!!!

Ellie from "Up"

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Legalistic Parents Make Me Hear The Voices

Ephesians 6:4 says, "Parents, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord."

Boy, sometimes I'd like to send this out to parents...legalistic ones...regarding their own children and their approach to other's children. I deal with a couple of those from time to time, and they seriously drive me insane. Their legalism actually gives them "permission" to target particular kids, and because they largely complain to the "right" (i.e. wrong) people, they get away with it. Well, I'm on the verge of going off like a rock star. Hmm...

Monday, December 20, 2010

Blog #1,000!!!

Oh my goodness! When I started blogging in 2007, I never imagined I'd actually have a total of 1,000 blogs under my belt some day! Being a typical "starter" and not a "finisher", I was pretty sure I'd throw in the towel after...2. Haha! But here I am...1,000 blogs later!!

Here's what I said in my very first one!
Well, I should start by saying that I have led a very messy least more recently. And this messy method of living is such a relief! I read once that it's better to live in the mess of an original life than in the perfect photocopy of someone else's. So after years of living as the "perfect" non-existent Christian girl (plllllleeeease!), I decided to admit some sad but true things about myself. And a very unique thing happened...I started to live...really live...and find a very real and living God.

I've wrestled with so many things...But as I've begun to live in the great dance of divine love, Jesus has begun to whisper my identity in my heart's ear. I am not those things from the past... No, I'm a out the gifts of wonder, compassion and wild hope...a warrior princess...a mystic princess.

The great adventure begins...
And what would I say 3 years later??

It's all still true!! In so many ways, I've never looked back! In the moments I have, I sure haven't lingered for very long. Oh ya...I still have things I have to work on. Imperfection is a definite reality. You know what though?...I have far more dreams than I ever had when my eyes were fixed on all the ways I could never measure up. Life in the wide open spaces of grace...

So...cheers to blog-journalling! Another 1,000? Ha!...who knows!!! :)

Oh, the pursuit!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

I Love My Doctor!

I had my 36,000 mile check-up recently (Thanks, Susan, for the "lingo"). We know how to have fun, don't we? ;) I have to give major kudos to my doc. I come every year with a string of questions. Some are related to all my physical quirks, and others come from my inquisitive side. She must look forward to my arrival each year...NOT!...but she sure is fantastic with all my wonderings. She's very encouraging to me too. She waited to get married and have kids until she was older. She wanted to pursue some other ventures before all of that. I love her story because she appreciates where anyone is in their relational journey and is excited for all stages. There's no such thing as "waiting" to her...that is, waiting to "live" until Mr. Right comes along. She reminds me of my pastor's wife, Martha, actually. So wonderful. :)

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Ignorance is not bliss...

Our culture prides itself so much in "independence", and of the original intent I am so proud. BUT...the extremes to which we seem to take it frustrate me so the point that I believe we have become content with a prettied-up package of "less".

Living lives that are so disconnected, making us unaware of and sometimes cold toward our neighbor. Lives that revolve around the narcissistic "me" to the degree that we devalue others...often unintentionally because we simply cannot see past ourselves.

So sad...because people the degree that true "thriving" depends on it.

I must admit that I actually have to include myself in this scenario too. I just don't seem to always notice it in myself until I'm on the receiving end. Tough to experience, but I guess it's good to be reminded that there is a better way to live.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Feeling Festive :)

All I Want For Christmas


Yep, it's that time again! I get to go hang out with a million little ladies at a local church's Christmas Tea for their age group. ADORABLE!! Hopefully, I can get my speech together though! It's been one of those crazy days so...we might just be "winging it". AHH! :)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Pastor Ryan Chats

I've had a storm brewing inside lately. Happens from time to time. Apparently, God planned for me to meet up with one of my pastors for a moment of "speaking to the storm". Man, it was so good. Granted, I didn't like everything he had to say...but those were more because I needed to have a serving of "veggies" for the soul. Definitely helped me get back on course. THANKS!

Coming Home

Interesting song of the "returning prodigal" sort. Yes, it's rap...haha!...I'm not usually into that, but this one seems so "real" that I'm fascinated. Unfortunately, I can't find a version without swear words. :( Don't listen if that will bother you.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Great Video Message :)

Father's Love Letter

Birthday Wish

I was with a friend last night who asked me how it feels to be turning another year older and still be single. Ha!...hold nothing back! Well, I must admit that one of my greatest birthday wishes is to have a significant Mr. celebrate my birthday with me. I've always wanted that. BUT...I will wait for God's timing on that. Anyway, it's always funny to me when that question comes up because it can mean so many things. Sometimes it's just a question because the inquisitor knows my heart on the matter. Other times, though, it's a clue that they think there is actually something "wrong" with being single still. Goodness, I'm so not there anymore. While it can be a struggle, I understand that there is a time for everything under the sun...

So, here's to another year...hopefully, one with some special presents. ;)

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Risk of One's Heart

My Uncle Tim is such a blessing! He's a life-long learner and with great humility just lives out his lessons. I am a willing student! Well, I am constantly amazed at the things he says...things that I know God is saying through him...things that speak to struggles and questions that I keep deep inside.

Last night was one of those.

My Uncle came up to me at a church gathering last night, said this and walked away..."It's my business to manage risk (he works in the financial industry), but I have found that the greatest risk of all...above any other the risk of sharing one's heart. So, I'm praying for you!"

In similar fashion to the other times he does this to me, he actually doesn't know anything that I'm specifically going through or hoping for. He's just a heart-man, and I love him for it. So...That's about where my eyes started tearing up. :)

That's the life of courage that I'm meant to live. And yes, with that risk comes pain...but a heart can't know love without that possibility. One either risks nothing to ensure never being hurt...embracing a life of lonliness...or one lives with arms wide open...embracing the hurts that may come but diving deep into an ocean of intimacy.

I'm going to be a girl marked by that risk...


I feel so bad about people who've learned to live with closed hearts.

Breaking in?...why does it have to be so hard?

Ok...I understand that part. It's scary outside their walls, so they'd prefer the safety of their lonliness.

But still...

When is it time to come out and play? Ever? long do we wait before we wave the white flag and move on...?

Cold Cold Heart

Don't Give Up!

Wow!! I'm a big Pink fan, but this arrangement is a nice complement of a variety of talents. And the message...oh so sweet! I love 4:24 and on. "Whatever may come. Whatever may go. That river's flowin'.."

Sunday, December 5, 2010

O Holy Night

My Tree

I just finished putting up my Christmas tree!! It's...beautiful! I LOVE twinkle lights! The more, the merrier! Oh, how I love this season.


‎"All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity; but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dream with open eyes and make it possible."

Note to self...I will dream by day.

Saturday, December 4, 2010


I try so massively hard to not view things with my "grid". Ugh, that's hard sometimes. So, instead of staying there, I'm just going to post a clip. Seems better. ;)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The Adventure Through Song of Solomon

Something I HIGHLY recommend is reading through Song of Solomon in the Bible. Make sure you read it as God's gal...the woman being sought after. It's a powerful picture of intimacy with the divine. I love how He always speaks of her beauty. He never leaves her in her perspective of herself, but instead calls her up another level to His perspective. The other special thing is the verse that says, "Don't awaken love until it so desires." I love the notion because it brings an element of peace to the journey towards Mr. Right. With all of the goodness of God's heart...and our openness to the possibility of romance, love will awaken in the right time.

World AIDS Day

I'm wearing red today for World AIDS Day. It's a battle that's important to me. I've included a link to a young lady that moved to Uganda to "love your neighbor". She inspires me. I've also included a couple of videos about children orphaned due to AIDS.

Katie's Blog

Helping Kenyan Grandparents