About Me

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i have a thing for foxes, red doors, and new friends. i also love to shop. a lot. i have nothing profound to say...but you should visit anyway (that rhymed!)

Saturday, December 25, 2010

count your blessings...instead of sheep

Merry Christmas :)
My first Christmas away was succesful, well..it isn't over, but the day almost is. Jonathan and I had a wonderful time opening gifts together last night. christmas eve is our opening- present- time. I got him an ipad, and he got me my kitchenaid mixer i had been saving for...and of course..it was bright yellow :)
We woke up, of course i did before Jonathan..i must have a christmas alarm clock. as soon as it goes "off" i'm up and immediately excited. but it was quiet. there was no mad dash or rush to get to mom's..i just waited for Jonathan to wake up. We ate breakfast. Then skyped with my family, it was a great idea in theory..but it was a little more of a painful tug on my heart than i was expecting. Everyone was caught up in that usually loud, and massive present opening time..and i sat in a quiet living room 420 miles away..watching..feeling very displaced. I almost sobbed...but remembered i wasn't alone.
We had a lovely time with step siblings, parents, aunts, uncles, cousins...etc...none mine of course, well only by marriage. I laughed, i ate, i even cried at different times during the day...but my mind always drifted to somewhere else...somewhere way more familiar...home.
I caught myself looking at the time, and mentally putting myself with my family...''this time on Christmas...we were....putting on our new gifts, clothes, shoes, jewelry..usually coordinating with another sister on what they were wearing..or if we would all wear the typical sister paraphernalia we got every year (of course we all have to wear the t shirts that say 'i love my sis')''...
But this year...i didn't coordinate my outfit..i just wore the outfit i had planned on wearing, i thought about wearing something new...but wanted to wait...
At supper, i caught myself pretending i was home, and someone was teasing my father about eating all my grandmothers cookies before dinner...or finding him asleep somewhere...(I actually looked at my phone later, and sis #6 had sent me a pic of dad asleep)
so hard. sooo very hard.
i definitely enjoyed being with my husbands family. they were very loving and comforting, especially knowing how much i wanted to be home. but still..i'm allowed to miss it.
I take a whole lot of comfort though, knowing...today, back home...was just what i expected..a beautiful chaos opening gifts, the intense yells and the struggle to be heard thanking each other over the noise, the coordinating of the christmas outfits, mom in her crazy christmas pjs, all the sisters..and any guests (there is always someone extra at mom and dad's house) tying ribbons from the gifts, around their heads...silly, crazy, chaotic, loud...beautiful. home.

Friday, December 17, 2010

my big red van...

I drive a big red van...this is true. I have been driving it since i was 19. It was a hand me down from my dad when I moved out. At 19 it doesn't matter as much, to me at least, what you are driving as long as it gets you from a-b. but at nearly 26...im soooooo over it. i was over it at 23. i named it the bullet. the bullet has been shockingly faithful to me for the last 6.5 years. there were so many times it gave me trouble, or i thought it was the end...yet a few new parts here and there, and it was back to it's loud self. so many times i would pull up to a stop light in the summer, and people with there windows down would look over at me because the bullet was so loud. on occasion i've walked to a different car pretending to be looking for my keys, until people weren't looking. the bullet was fun don't get me wrong. it was known around campus, friends affectionately joked about it. it has been the party bus on toooo many occasions. i was even known as "soccer mom" for all the rides i would give to friends without cars. one time.....believe it or not, the bullet was stolen. right from in front of my house. i didn't even realize it till later the next day. i laughed when i realized it. i laughed when the cop came to get the report. i laughed when we found it a week later. and i did cry a bit when we had to start it up with a screwdriver because the thief ripped the ignition out....good times...many of nights the bullet was a confessional or a counseling office. i would drive a friend home, and we would sit there for hours talking and probably crying. friends i haven't seen for years will laugh when they see i'm still driving the bullet. a few of my friends tried to get me to use the bullet as our getaway car after i got married...(as if)... so many times i was driving somewhere, in the bullet of course, and it would do something weird...like shut off while driving...naturally..and i would put my hand on the dash and say, "please Lord...not now...not yet...a few more months...." no one thought it would last this long..not even me.
God heard me then...and he is hearing me now..."PLEASE LORD...A NEW CAR!!"
Jonathan says that we can get a new car in january :) i almost can't even believe it! And as happy and relived i will be...to get in a car and believe that i will make it to my destination without a worry or care....it won't be the bullet. it won't represent my life as a hippie. as a single girl. as a soccer mom. someone who marched to a different beat...(or in the bullets case...a loud ticking noise) i will no longer have that quirky character vehicle that opposes the norm...whatever that means...i guess all that to say..without the bullet...i will feel a little more normal than i'm ready for ... =/
but then again...what is normal?

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

today is a very good day...

My beautiful eldest sister, returns home from Costa Rica today....for Christmas :) She spends her life giving it up for others...she takes care of the forgotten. the dirty. the persecuted. the poor. she takes them in, no matter the age or race, or gender...and loves them with passion, mercy and grace.
it is easy to forget what she does. she is my sister who lives in central america, putting together an organization. but then i see her pictures, and hear the stories, and read her blog...and i'm inspired. it is hard for her to be away from our family, but she can't walk away from her calling. i am very thankful for the excuse of the holidays...it brings my anna home :)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

a love affair...

Dear Ulta,
You made my night. I needed new makeup, and i decided to order it on your website on cyber monday. You offered me free shipping, i blushed. Then you offered me a free makeup brush, i giggled. Then you offered me a gift package of about 40 different samples in an adorable little makeup bag, just for placing my order that day...i started to doodle your name. Then as i was skipping to the checkout, filling elated and fancy free....you offered me 3 free samples, because you Ulta understand my inmost thoughts and desires....
Ulta, I am in love with you,
you complete me.
(ps your package arrived to me last night, i was sick and feeling lonely, and you arrived just when i needed you most....amore)

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

So maybe you are asking...

(this photo courtesy of Nina Mullins Photography)
Why is my world painted yellow? And maybe no one is asking that..because no one reads this except for my sister.. but i'll answer anyways..
I am big on Joy..I have gone through seasons where it wasn't as evident...currently coming out of that season. I have always gravitated towards happy people...I believe that I should never lose my joy..life may have ups and downs..but joy should be a constant.
The Bible talks about how the "Joy of the Lord is our strength" and Psalm 19:8 says,
"The precepts of the LORD are right,
giving joy to the heart.
The commands of the LORD are radiant,
giving light to the eyes."(NIV)
First of all, if the joy of the Lord is our strength...i don't want to live life being weak.. It isn't often that christians look at His commands as being fun, or enJOYable...but they are! When we follow His commands it gives joy to our heart, strength to our bodies, hearts and minds, and light to our eyes. That doesn't sound bad to me! Besides, finding delight in Him, His commands, and His creation...is the way we are supposed to living life. It is easy to get caught up in negative environments...they are all around us. Misery loves company, and people have no problems trying to drag you down with them.
So...all that to explain about yellow. Yellow is a color that when i see it...i just immediately fill uplifted..strange i'm sure. But when you see it...it just pops out. Most people do describe yellow as being happy. Some people say it is the color of anxiety..haha...
But to me it will always represent joy..it represents the sun and warmth..my teapot on my stove, my bright yellow sunflowers i carried down the aisle at my wedding...
So many things in my house have little yellow accents on them.
To sum it all up...I hope to always pursue Him, and His joy..even if i have to paint it yellow :)

Sunday, December 5, 2010

sentimental 2nd post

I just absolutely love Christmas...i don't understand people who are bah humbug about it. I understand that people get all huffy about the commercialization and stuff and yes Jesus doesn't get the credit He should, but to me not only is it a blessed reminder of His birth, but it also it brings out every childhood joy and emotion. There is so much nostalgia to Christmas...the lights that twinkle bring back memories of all 7 of us Carroll women decorating the tree with mom, while christmas music played...(which was usually this tape, yes a tape, of bells i believe called carol of the bells). The smell of baked goods that take me back to christmas eve and driving to my nanny and grandad's house in our station wagon, each of us holding something for mom that she had cooked...agh i love it all...and miss those times...we are now scattered throughout, Anna in Costa Rica...Rachel who shares holidays with her husband's family...my grandparents have both passed away, and I will be spending christmas with my husbands family in North Carolina...crazy how much changes...But one constant to the holidays, is my mother. She is the essence of Christmas. From the end of november to the end of december you can count on the fact that when you walk into her house there will be decorations up everywhere(even in the bathrooms) and some sorta sugary goodness wafting from the kitchen, and yes carol of the bells playing...she greets you with excitement and shows you all the things she has done or prepared...which you already expected but you don't say anything..because that is a trait of hers...she loves to tell you the obvious. Even friends will say, "aw your mom loves christmas" she is known..people go to her house to experience it, she will take anyone in and love on them if they need a mama...she has come over and helped me decorate before, and it definitely looked a whole lot better...(i'm not crafty), but it is still not the same as her house...because she has perfected Christmas.
My sister Rachel and I argued the other night about who will be mom when we get older, I definitely think i have her kooky and quirky-ness, but Rachel has decorating skills...so maybe it will be a combined effort...but even if we tried to produce my mom's christmas "essence" it still wouldn't compare...God has given her that unique ability and that is what she will always be known for.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

a blog? really?

YES! (that's the answer to my title) I don't really get this thing...and i've made fun of random people who have blogs about uninteresting things...yet i found myself reading them...so why not? Here goes...