Enduring All Things: November 2013

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thankful Thursday: Thanksgiving

Today for Thankful Thursday I am thankful for... 
Thanksgiving
Last year in November I did a 30 days of Thanks on Facebook. Every day I posted something else I was thakful for. On Tuesday of Thanksgiving week (the day before we left to drive to my grandma's house), I posted this.
It still rings true. I don't mind traveling. I love spending time on the road with my hubby. And spending time with family is so worth it. So today I am thankful for Thanksgiving and everything this holiday means, namely; family, food, and football! There is just not much better!

So I hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you are spending today with people you love and get to eat lots of good food!
Thanks for reading!


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Wednesday, November 27, 2013

#ThankfulProject: A Simple Pleasure


Today's #ThankfulProject prompt is A Simple Pleasure. I think my most favorite simple pleasure in life is laughter. Or more specifically, laughing till my abs hurt!

Every once in a while, I will spend a whole month coming up with a "Happiness is..." Facebook status every day. They are usually little things, simple pleasures if you will. Here is one I used in October of my senior year at Harding.
I love my roommates! And I miss them so much. There was never a dull moment in our apartment and for that, I am grateful.

I love laughing. It's pretty much my favorite. I am thankful for the way my husband and friends make me laugh.

Thanks for reading!

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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

5.5 Out Of 8 {Tuesday Goals}

Hello Loves, 

It is time for weekly goals again. Two weeks ago, I decided that I was ready to get out of a rut and I set some goals for myself that were more than just about our marriage (which is what this link up is really about). You can read that post here. Last week, I gave you all an update on how I was doing on those goals. Read it here. I have some more updates for you today.
  • Read a chapter out of the Bible every day. I believe I will start with Proverbs. Check! I have kept up with this all week. I do it pretty much first thing in the morning (after I make coffee) and it works! And it is a fantastic start to my day.
  • Rinse all dishes and put them in the dish washer as soon as we use them. No more letting them pile up. Big FAIL! I was awful at this one this week. My kitchen was a HUGE mess by Saturday and I spent almost 2 hours doing dishes and cleaning.
  • Pray every night with Pearson whether we go to bed at the same time or not. Another fail. Why can't we remember to do this? We pray together at meal time without even thinking about it. Why is it hard to remember before bed?
  • Have a designated weekly date night. Check! We went to Chipotle for dinner and then saw The Hunger Games: Catching Fire on Thursday! (Yes Thursday. For some reason, our theater started showing it at 8:00 the night before it was supposed to come out. Oh well, I didn't have to go at midnight)
  • Set aside time for blogging every week and try not to spend too much time over that allotment. Sorta. I was better this week about blogging only when Pearson wasn't home, but it still takes longer than it should. I get sidetracked too easily.
  • Cook diner at home as much as possible. And try to be healthier about it. Check!
  • Exercise every weekday, doing cardio and Pilates switching every day. I skipped a couple days, but I worked out both Saturday and Sunday to make up for it.
  • Pick a different person or situation every day and spend some intentional time in prayer for that person. Check. I LOVE doing this. Being intentional about praying for other people certainly helps them, but it also makes me feel better. And I am learning how to pray for people and situations I wouldn't usually take the time to pray for.
So I think I've been doing pretty well. That praying before bed thing is still giving me trouble and I need to get back on track with the dishes, but other than that pretty good.

How are you doing on your goals? Go link up with Amberly!
Thanks for reading!
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Monday, November 25, 2013

Holiday Packing Tips

I am so excited for the holidays! I need a break. Work has been a bear lately and I am ready to relax. But the holidays are so much more than that, right? We spend the holidays with family and friends. Often times we get to see loved ones we haven't seen in months or even years. It is a most wonderful time of year!
All the cousins with Memaw and Pepaw Christmas 1997?
But, a lot of times, we have to travel far distances to get to the family we are so eager to see. This is where I get stressed out. I have traveled by airplane about a million times in my life and spending 10+ hours in the car has never bothered me. I've been doing that all my life, too. So why does traveling stress me out? It's both making sure everything is taken care of at home first, and then the packing. I will admit I am better about this than I used to be, but planning and packing for a trip gives me anxiety.

How cold is it going to be there? (I will check the weather in our destination at least 5 times before we leave)
Will I need to dress up or down? (I always worry about being under or over dresses, not just on trips)
Is my fancy dress going to look horrible after the trip?
Do I have enough sweaters, jeans, and underwear?
How can I pack less shoes?
Should I pack my good lotion or is the stuff in my purse good enough?
Do I really need all those hair products?
Is Pearson going to be disappointed when he sees everything I packed?
And now that we have a dog...
Is his crate going to fit in the car?
Did we pack enough food?
What if the only toy he wants while we are there is the one we leave at home?
Anyway, you get the idea.
The people at Paul Fredrick have put together a list of packing tips on their blog. Go check them out. One thing they mentioned that I have never heard or thought about is "showering with your clothes" to steam them after taking them out of your suitcase. Brilliant! They have come up with several great tips (mostly for men), but I would like to add some of my own that I have learned over the years (including some specifically for women).

So here we go...
  1. Usually, one pair of jeans is enough. Bring a tide to-go pen so if you get something on your only pair of jeans, it isn't the end of the world. Same goes for slacks or a good pencil skirt. You can pair one bottom with several different tops throughout the trip.
  2. Use your destination's resources. If you are staying with family, ask if they would mind your using their washer/dryer, iron and board, towels, and even hair dryer. If they don't care, you can do laundry there and pack less.
  3. Try to eliminate "just in case" clothes. If worst comes to worst, borrow or buy something new.
  4. Try rolling your clothing items when you pack them. This usually makes more room in the suitcase and the clothes come out less wrinkled. (The people at Paul Frederick mentioned this one too, but I want to reiterate it. It has saved me on several occasions).
  5. Unpack when you get there, if possible. At least hang up the fancy stuff.
  6. String your necklaces into straws then hook them all together with a twist-tie. Take one out of the twist-tie at a time to wear. This keeps them from getting tangled up.
  7. Keep you earrings in a smaller bag within your jewelry bag so they don't get lost at the bottom.
  8. Keep a packing list. The first things on my list are always phone charger and makeup because those are things I keep out of the suit case until the last minute. Before we leave, I double check the list to make sure I got everything.
  9. Layer. If you are traveling from cold, snowy Ohio to sunny, warm south Georgia like we are for Thanksgiving, you will be traveling through several different levels of weather. You will want to be able to shed the layers as you drive further south.
  10. If you're driving, pack munchies. We usually go with nuts or other "healthy" snacks that are easy to munch on while driving, and bottles of water.
I know these tips aren't all about how to pack to keep your clothes crisp per se, but I think they are helpful. Once I have everything packed and we are on the road on Wednesday, I know I will be happy and really enjoy the trip (including the drive) but I am not looking forward to the packing.

Do you have any tips to add to out lists?
Thanks for reading and don't forget to check out the great tips from the wonderful people at Paul Fredrick!
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Friday, November 22, 2013

Love Story: The Proposal

Continuing our love story today! {This one is exciting} Feel free to read Part 1 and Part 2 if you missed them. Then come back over here!

Part 3: The Proposal

Let me give you a little back story first...

First of all, as you know, we started dating at 16. So our first kiss was on a putt putt course at a youth group event.

Secondly, one of my roommates was living and working in Birmingham the summer we got engaged [2011]. Since she is from North Arkansas, living only 3 hours away from me was a welcomed change. Therefore, she and her boyfriend came to Atlanta to visit a several times that Summer.

And lastly, I was convinced Pearson was going to wait till we got back to school after Summer break to propose because I had caught him texting some of our friends from school and it would just make sense.

Okay now that you are up to speed... 

There were only a couple weeks left of Summer vacation before we would be heading back to Harding for our Senior year. Pearson said we should have one last shindig before summer was over. He suggested that we spend a day riding go-carts and playing putt putt at Malibu Grand Prix [where we had our first kiss]. So I agreed and we planned for Saturday, July 30th.

On Monday or Tuesday of that week, while I was sitting at work [I was an intern for the company I now work for], I got a text from Mollie, my roommate. She said something along the lines of "Hey, by the way, Alex and I will be in Atlanta on Saturday. We should hang out!" So I thought 'Mollie and Alex should come to Malibu with us and play putt putt!' I thought this was MY idea... So naive.

So on Saturday, Pearson and I got to Malibu early to play around before Mollie and Alex got there. It was so fun just hanging out and goofing off. When the others got there, we started a game of putt putt. Mollie and Alex took pictures the whole time we went through the course. I just thought they were recording their trip to Atlanta and golfing with us. When we finished the 18th hole, it looked like it was about to rain any minute and there were people trying to get through the course behind us. Pearson put his club down on the green and I said "We are supposed to take those with us and turn them back in." He started to pick it up but then he said "Wait, I have to tell you something first." He grabbed my shoulders and said that he "can't remember life without me and never wants to" and some other really sweet things. Then he got down on a knee and I was completely shocked. Of course, when I could think again, I said yes- or rather nodded my head. The ring was gorgeous! Alex was snapping pics right and left and I was speechless. 

But wait! That's not all! After I said yes, Pearson's sister came running out of the building behind us! She ran up and hugged me out of nowhere! His whole family was there. My parents and my grandparents were there. They were all hiding in the building behind us. I had no idea they had snuck in! 
Asking me to marry him//I said yes!//The ring//The photographers with the newly engaged couple!
He did so well! The whole thing was absolutely perfect. I loved that so many people were involved. I really appreciate how much work and planning Pearson put into it. And to keep it a surprise from me is a BIG thing for him!

How did your husband propose? Was it a surprise like mine? Were other people involved?
Thanks for reading!
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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

#ThankfulProject: Something About Your Significant Other


Joining the Thankful Project Linkup again today! You can read my other #ThankfulProject posts here.
Today's prompt: Something about your Significant Other.

Warning: This post will be sappy. I am bragging about my husband. Feel free to stop reading if you don't want to hear it. Don't say I didn't warn you ;)

There is so much about Pearson that I am thankful for, it was hard to pick just one thing. So I decided to go with something that I think includes everything.

I am thankful for Pearson's unconditional love & care for me! 

This encompasses almost everything about Pearson that I am thankful for because this is the reason why he is so great! He chooses to love me and show that to me every day whether I deserve it or not. 

Because Pearson loves me unconditionally, he...
Asks me if I slept well every morning because he genuinely cares!
Asks how my day was when he gets home every day!
Really tries to understand me when I am emotional instead of just giving up.
Appreciates my domestic skills and always tells me how good dinner was or how he loves our apartment.
Always offers to do things for me. He knows I can do them, but he doesn't want me to have to.
Doesn't hold a grudge and when he does get mad at me, he gets over it so fast!

Pearson truly spends his days trying to love me as Christ loved the church. This is no easy task in general for a mere man to do and I know it must be even harder when I am irritable or unhappy. But he tries anyway. And I'd say he is pretty good at it! [Sorry ladies, he's mine!]

I am so truly blessed to be married to this fantastic man!
What about your significant other or best friend are you thankful for?
Thanks for reading!
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Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Tuesday Goals

So last week I talked about setting intentional goals to be more motivated about life in general. I was in a rut and needed a change. I am actually pretty impressed with myself. I kept up with more than half of my goals so far. (That's some real confidence I have in myself, huh?)

  • Read a chapter out of the Bible every day. I believe I will start with Proverbs. I forgot to do this a couple times but I caught up the next day both times. Spending time with God in scripture should be my number one goal. I need to find a time to set aside to do this so that it isn't forgotten and I can get into a habit like I used to be. Any other suggestions on how to make this happen?
  • Rinse all dishes and put them in the dish washer as soon as we use them. No more letting them pile up. This goal was accomplished for the most part. There were only ever a couple things here and there that didn't immediately get washed.
  • Pray every night with Pearson whether we go to bed at the same time or not. Fail. We prayed before bed twice this week, I think. We just need to be more intentional about this as well. I hate that we have gotten out of the habit.
  • Have a designated weekly date night. Check! We went and saw Thor at the Dine-in theater after some Christmas shopping Friday night!
  • Set aside time for blogging every week and try not to spend too much time over that allotment. This one is really hard. I get so distracted. But I think I did pretty well. I also started accepting Sponsors this week so keeping up with that added a little more work.
  • Cook diner at home as much as possible. And try to be healthier about it. I cooked at home every night possible this week :)
  • Exercise every weekday, doing cardio and Pilates switching every day. Check! I should probably do this on the weekends too, but I couldn't bring myself to do much this weekend.
It is really kinda sad that the two goals I am failing most at are spiritual ones. It has made me reflect on my life and realize that I may need to change some priorities. I think this next week will be better.

And I would like to add one more goal. I give credit for this idea to Danielle from Simply Faithful. She recently came up with a prayer challenge in which every day for the rest of the year, she will be intentionally praying for a specific person. This idea came from the fact that so many of us tell someone we will pray for them but never really do. So another goal I have for the rest of the year is this:

  • Pick a different person or situation every day and spend some intentional time in prayer for that person.
What are your goals this week? How are you doing on your goals from last week?
Thanks for reading!

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Monday, November 18, 2013

Cara Box Reveal

Back in September, I joined a blogging network from Wifessionals called Cara Box. Every quarter, bloggers sign up and get matched up with other similar bloggers. We then spend 3 months getting to know our matches and eventually send them a care package, aka a Cara Box.
Cara Box
I was paired up with the lovely Kristy from Keep Calm and Teach On and Abbe from This Webber Life. I had a lot of fun getting to know these two wonderful women and I truly believe (and hope) we will keep in touch in the future.

I got to send a Cara Box to Abby and Kristy sent some lovely goodies to me! The theme for this quarter was everything Fall. Kristy did such a fantastic job. I loved everything in my box!

So here is what I saw when I first opened the box! The letter written on fun animal print paper made a great first impression.
As I took each item out of the box I got more and more excited! Kristy knew me so well after only communicating over the internet for a couple months.

Sorry that picture is a little blurry. :-/ Here is a break down of what I got:

The mod podge 'M' is now above my front door. It is so cute and the colors and design are perfect for Fall!

The tin bucket is also cute. It has fall leaves on the sides and Kristi wrote "The Maugeris" on one side and "Happy Fall Y'all" on the other! It is currently holding magazines in our living room.

She also included a cute little decorative "Harvest" sign. Which looks lovely on my bookshelf!

Kristi had the cutest idea! She made me a Christmas ornament. On one side, she put her name in the shape of Louisiana (where she lives) and my name in the shape of Ohio (where I live) with a dashed line between them. Cool right? And the other side says "Fall 2013 Cara Box Matches."

And lastly, my favorite... She got me a tumbler and put an anchor and my name on one side. The other side says "Let go and let God." I LOVE it! I really struggle sometimes with worry and not trusting our Heavenly Father to take care of me.

Kristi did a fantastic job with all of this! She really put a lot of thought into it and I felt truly loved. Her letter was so encouraging and perfect.

I also loved buying stuff for Abbe and I can't wait to read her reveal post!

I really enjoyed getting to know both Kristi and Abbe and I can't wait to meet my matches for the winter quarter!

Thanks for reading!

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Sunday, November 17, 2013

Now Taking Sponsors!


Hello Lovely Readers!

I just wanted to let you all know that I am now accepting sponsors on my blog! I won a year subscription to Passionfruit from The Dwelling Tree about a month ago and finally got around to setting everything up. If you have a blog or a shop and would like to advertise on my blog, please check out the options on my sponsor page.

But wait, there's more! To celebrate this milestone, I am giving you the opportunity to purchase any ad spot for 50% off! Just be sure to use the promo code PASSION50 at checkout.

Thanks for your support in advance and I can't wait to work with some of you wonderful readers!
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Friday, November 15, 2013

Love Story: Dating Days

Today I am going back our Love Story series. If you missed the first post in this series about how we met and got together, you can read it here. On to our dating days!

Part 2: Dating Days

Pearson and I dated all through the rest of high school. It was hard because we lived a good 45 minutes away from each other and went to different high schools. On top of that, neither of us got our licenses till we were 17. And when I got my license, my parents didn't want me to drive that far all the time [nor did I really want to]. So basically we saw each other at church, church events, and when we would hang out before or after church or church events.
At our church's Prom Alternative, junior year.
After high school, I knew I wanted to go to Harding University and we were both so thankful that Pearson got a full tuition academic scholarship which meant that he was definitely going to join me! [I just love bragging on that kid]. But then people started talking to me about our relationship and I started thinking. Do I want to go off to college spoken for? Do I want to experience being a freshman but not being single? Will I miss out on opportunities to meet new people if I feel like I always have to hang out with the boyfriend I brought with me? [Looking back now, I realize I was extremely dumb- there is really no other word for it]. Pearson and I talked about this and we realized we loved each other too much and the thought of not being together was not even fun to think about.
Before a Spring Sing performance Freshman year
Once in school at Harding, we hung out every possible minute of the day now that we were living on the same campus. It was wonderful until I started getting a little too serious for him. Really, I just wanted to be able to talk about my future like he was going to be in it without having to say 'if we get married.' But every time I tried that, he would get upset and correct me. It always hurt so much and I tried to convince myself that he was just a boy overreacting, but it didn't help much.

So in February of our Freshman year, we broke up.
Two weeks later, we got back together.
I think I can safely say those were the worst two weeks of my life.
A snow day at Harding senior year
Things were definitely not perfect after that, but we worked on our communication. We went through a lot more through the rest of our college days. We had a lot of fun and we got closer and fell more in love with every passing day. Our conversations became deeper and we started anticipating our future together, but we knew we wanted to wait until we were both out of college before we got married.

All in all, our dating days were fantastic. Way too much happened for me to talk about everything, but we had [and still have] a blast together. We belong together and everybody around us could see it.

Thanks for reading!
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Thursday, November 14, 2013

Thankful Thursday: 16 Months of Mariage

I am combining Thankful Thursday with the #ThankfulProject prompt for today.

Today's prompt is a blessing. How perfect that today's prompt falls on the 14th of the month? We got married on July 14, 2012 so today for Thankful Thursday and the Thankful Project, I am thankful for...

16 Wonderful Months of Marriage

I have never been more thankful for an earthly blessing in my life than I am for my husband and our marriage. This may sound sappy and cliche but it is so true. 

I don't remember how my life was before I met Pearson. Granted, that could be because we met in 7th grade. But in all seriousness, I can't imagine my life without him and I don't want to try. He completes me in every possible way. He is my better, stronger, smarter, kinder half and I am so thankful for that. He keeps me grounded. He supports me in everything I do.

It is also hard to remember a time when we weren't married. Even though we have only been married 16 months. Being married to Pearson is just so right and natural that I can't imagine living any other way. We really haven't had many problems. No, our marriage isn't perfect, but it is pretty close :) We complement each other perfectly. Having him by my side through life has been the most wonderful experience I can imagine. We belong together and I am so thankful we found each other and that he chose to be with me forever!

I love falling asleep and waking up next to my best friend. I love cuddling and watching our favorite TV shows. I love our deep discussions about anything under the sun (usually late at night). I love our silly discussions about ridiculous things (also usually late at night). I love date nights with him. I love holidays with him. And I love watching college football all day on Saturday with him.

So today, and certainly every day, I am thankful for our marriage. I am thankful even when things aren't perfect because the good certainly outweighs the bad and it is all worth spending my life with this wonderful man!

What blessing in your life are you thankful for today?
Thanks for reading!

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Wednesday, November 13, 2013

#ThankfulProject: An Ability


This is my second entry in the Thankful Project linkup with Chasing Happy. You can read my first one (and a little more about the project) here. Today's prompt is to write about an ability I am thankful for.

I have many abilities. I am very blessed that way. And I know I take many abilities for granted, like walking, talking, breathing, seeing, and regulating my heart beat just to name a few. But today I want to focus on the ability to read.

I love to read for many reasons. The biggest reason is that when I read a novel, I get totally lost in that world. I can escape our world and spend time in theirs. The book encompasses my brain sometimes to the point that I dream about it. I think about the characters all the time and wonder what they are doing just like if they were real people. I am reading Insurgent by Veronica Roth (the 2nd book in the Divergent series) right now and it has the best of me.

But the ability to read is so much more than reading a novel. How hard would it be to drive if you couldn't read the signs? Or how could you find your way in an unfamiliar town? You couldn't text. There are not many jobs you could do. Even watching TV or movies would prove difficult at times. Not being able to read would be tougher than most of us realize. I think it is one of those things we easily take for granted. I am thankful I can read.

Another reason I am thankful for this ability is because I am able to read God's written word anytime and anywhere. I can't imagine having to take what other people say about the Bible as Truth without the ability to read, study, and come up with an answer on my own. I know they have audio books but it is not the same.

So today (and every day) I am thankful for the ability to read.
What ability are you thankful for?
Thanks for reading!

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Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Motivation to be Intentional

Today I want to talk about motivation. I lack it often. I think a lot of people lack motivation. We lack motivation to get work done, to work on our relationships, to exercise and get into shape, to spend time with God, and much more I'm sure.

Lately, I feel like I have no motivation for anything. I basically quit reading The Love Dare a couple weeks ago. I can't make myself write any blog posts. I am even in a rut at work.

Last night, while sitting on the couch in my pajamas having not changed out of them all day, I decided I wanted to change all that. I hate feeling like I am not doing anything and just wasting away. So that will be my motivation to be more intentional in my life. I know this isn't the first day of the year or month, or even the week, but starting today I am going get out of this rut.

So here are my goals starting today and lasting into the foreseeable future:
  • Read a chapter out of the Bible every day. I believe I will start with Proverbs. 
  • Rinse all dishes and put them in the dish washer as soon as we use them. No more letting them pile up. 
  • Pray every night with Pearson whether we go to bed at the same time or not. 
  • Have a designated weekly date night. 
  • Set aside time for blogging every week and try not to spend too much time over that allotment. 
  • Cook diner at home as much as possible. And try to be healthier about it. 
  • Exercise every weekday, doing cardio and Pilates switching every day.
Hopefully being intentional about these things will help me get back into the swing of my life. I am so blessed with the life I have been given and I don't want to waste it.
Have you ever gotten into a rut and been unmotivated to do much of anything? 
How do you combat it? 

Thanks for reading!
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Thursday, November 7, 2013

Thankful Thursday: College Football

Today for Thankful Thursday, I am thankful for...
College Football
Via
I love college football. It is one of my favorite things about Fall. I love waking up late, putting on my UGA sweatshirt and plopping on the couch with a bag of potato chips and Diet Coke. Sometimes I make nachos or buffalo chicken bites-you know, football food-and cheer on my Dawgs to victory.

I can remember the sound of Larry Munson's voice on the radio and the comfort it brought because that sound meant I was where I was supposed to be. I can hear his voice today [on recordings, of course] and it brings back memories.

Football brought my family together growing up. It brings friends together on Saturdays. It gives us something to follow and obsess over love. I can remember playing in softball tournaments all day on Saturday and someone in the bleachers would be listening to the Georgia game and giving us all updates on the score. Then in between games, we would all go to the parking lot and hang out in the bed of Dad's truck with the radio turned up. I remember watching on TV on lazy Saturdays and the whole family screaming when they would score.

If you couldn't tell, I am a Georgia fan. Born and raised. And I am thankful for that. I am thankful for how football brings my family together and gives me something to follow and look forward to. Plus, I just love football. [I just wish Georgia could have gone all the way last year-so close!]

Thanks for reading!

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Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Love Story: How We Met

A lot of bloggers seem to be posting their love stories lately so I thought I would jump on that wagon!

Part 1: How We Met (and got together)

Pearson and I didn't meat in a typical way. We didn't fall in love at first sight or meet through a blind date. We couldn't really do any of that because when God put us in each others' lives, we were not near ready to date. We were 12! 

When I was in 7th grade, Pearson's family started coming to the church I had attended since I was 5. We were nice to each other and did church-y things with the youth group all the time, but we never really thought more of our relationship. To be honest, I thought he was really weird and kinda nerdy [he was. And still is]. He tells me, though, that he had a crush on me. Especially this one time we went to the Laser Show at Stone Mountain with a bunch of middle-schoolers from church. I really don't know if I believe him, but anywho...

As we got older [and were able to hang out with friends more anyway being in high school now] we became closer friends. For a while there, 4 of us friends in the youth group did a lot of stuff together. 2 girls and 2 boys. Not couples. Actually, Sophomore year of high school, the 4 of us went to homecoming together but Pearson took the other girl as a "date" and I went with the other guy as a "date".
Homecoming 2005
Finally, we went on this one youth group trip to Gatlinburg, TN in the Spring of 2006. We were nearing the end of our sophomore year. That weekend, things changed. My attention switched from the whole group with emphasis on the "other guy" to being focused mostly on Pearson. I can't really put my finger on what changed or why it changed. I attribute that to the fact that I was 16 and simply had a crush on a boy and didn't think much else about it. Of course, at the time, that boy was the most important thing in the world [As he is now, but for different reasons].
Us in Gaitlinburg
After that weekend trip, we started to flirt and hang out and enjoy each other's company more. We would talk on the phone for hours at a time and always had to sit next to each other in church, but we didn't become "official" [you know how that goes] for another 4 months.

This seemed to drag on forever. We both knew how we felt about each other, or we could guess anyway [don't forget, we were 16], but neither of us would take a step toward making it official.

Finally, one June day [June 11, 2006 to be exact] Pearson told me he needed to talk to me after church. So I sat through the service and I am pretty sure I didn't hear a thing the preacher said. Afterwards, Pearson asked me on our first date. Later that week, we went to see the movie Cars. We held hands through the movie and my arm was aching by the end because of cut off circulation, but I wasn't about to move it. I was on cloud nine! The next week, Pearson went to Nicaragua on a mission trip and I didn't get to go that year. While he was gone, I put on Myspace that he was my boyfriend. He didn't have a Myspace, but a friend of ours who was on the mission trip showed him. When he got back he wanted to talk about it and I think I said something along the lines of "Well, I figured since we 'talked' for so long, our first real date made us official." I think he was OK with that.

So that was the start of our fantastic relationship. Two immature teenagers brought together by God, or fate, or destiny or whatever you want to call it.

How did you meet your significant other? Were you high school sweethearts like us?
Thanks for reading!
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Monday, November 4, 2013

#ThankfulProject: An Experience

As I mentioned on Friday, I am excited to announce a blogging project for this month. I am going to be joining Kenzie from Chasing Happy as she takes this month to be intentionally thankful for the blessings in her life.
The Thankful Project is 28 days of intentional gratitude. Kenzie has created a list of 28 prompts and bloggers will link to her blog every day with their #ThankfulProject posts.
I will not be joining every day from now till Thanksgiving because, let's be honest, I don't want to spend too much time worrying about getting a post out every day (and I know that's what I would do). I think the point of being thankful is taking the time to reflect on what you are thankful for and thank God for your blessings, not necessarily to tell the world about it. But I do like the idea of being intentional about it every day. Also, I have some other fun bloggy things planned this month! Anyway, I will be joining the link up once or twice a week along with my usual Thankful Thursday posts. I am excited!

Today's Prompt: An Experience
I have been blessed with many wonderful experiences in my life; Going to a Christian college, Harding Honor Symposium, marrying my best friend, travel softball, teaching Sunday school, playing collegiate ultimate frisbee, and serving as an officer in my social club just to name a few. But today I want to focus on one somewhat small (8 days) experience that had a lasting impact on my life... my mission trip to Nicaragua in 2008.

The summer after I graduated from high school, I joined a team of people from my church on a mission trip to Chinandega, Nicaragua. We held a free medical clinic for the locals, we held a vacation bible school for the kids, we held a gospel meeting in the evenings, and we did a lot of door knocking evangelism.
My dad preaching in the church building during the gospel meeting one night.
Me and Pearson before heading out for the day's work
Over this week, I saw a lot. I saw the poverty in the homes these people owned. I saw the eagerness of the kids in bible class. I saw the openness the people had to hear what we told them when we knocked on their doors. I saw the needs they had for medical and dental attention that they can't normally get. I had been told how fortunate we are here in the United States. I had been told that people in other countries are usually more eager to hear the Truth. I had been told that people who were less fortunate were usually more content with what they had. But none of this ever really hit home until I was there. Amazing.
Playing with one of the girls at VBS.
All of the VBS workers and some of the kids
I am thankful for this experience because I saw the need for food, shelter, and Jesus first hand. And Nicaragua is not even a third-world country so there is much worse out there. I am thankful for this experience because it taught me of the need for Christian love and action all over the world.

I am also thankful for how this trip brought our team closer together. Some of the people on the team from my home church were not people I was very close to before. Also, we met up with a team from another church in Georgia so I didn't know them at all. One of the strongest memories I have from that week was all the young people on the trip sitting around the pool at the hotel in Managua (the capitol where we flew in and out of) singing praises to God. Not to mention playing soccer every day with a rock.
Playing soccer with the local kids. using a rock for the ball.
The whole group from our church on top of Mt. Messiah on our sight seeing day.
I definitely recommend visiting and working with a country less fortunate than ours if you ever get a chance. It will change your life.

What experience are you thankful for?
Thanks for reading!

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Friday, November 1, 2013

Halloween Costume Reveal

Happy November, everybody! I hope everyone had a fantastic October and that you are all looking forward to this month!
Now that Halloween is over and our costumes have been seen (and I tied for best costume at the Buckeyes 4 Christ Halloween party last night), I thought I would share with you guys. I'm not gonna lie, I am pretty proud of these. And it really wasn't that difficult. If you follow me on Instagram, then you already know what Pearson and I dressed as... We went as Shamy!!!
That's right, we went to the Halloween party as Dr. Sheldon Cooper and Dr. Amy Farrah Fowler. And it was a hit. (At least with the Big Bang Theory nerds there).

Pearson already had everything for his costume. All he had to do was shave his beard. He was going to get his hair cut too but ran out of time. I think he still looks pretty convincing.

I bought the skirt from Goodwill for $4 and I can definitely see myself wearing it again. And that's it. I wore my glasses instead of contacts, and I attempted to darken my hair with coffee, but I can't see much of a difference.
What do you think? Do I look like her?
Ahh! It's a tiara! Put it on me! Put it on me! Put it on me!
What about Sheldon? Convincing?
And of course Pip had to be batman to match Sheldon's shirt.
We watched It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. We played Super Smash Brothers, Bananagrams, Munchkin, and Halloween Pictionary. We bobbed for apples and had the costume contest. The night turned out to be really fun and low key. Just hanging out with friends. Those are the best kinds of parties in my opinion!

I hope everyone had a great and safe Halloween. And on to the month of Thanksgiving and thankfulness. I am excited about a blogging project I will be joining this month. More on that Monday.

What did you dress up as this year? Was it convincing? Did you get good reactions?
Thanks for reading!

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