Tomorrow is the first day of Lent. For those that aren't familiar, sundayschoollessons.com gives a brief description: Lent is the 40 weekdays from Ash Wednesday until Easter observed by Christians as a season of fasting and penitence in preparation for Easter.This time follows Jesus from his adult ministry through His suffering during Holy Week to His crucifixion and death on Good Friday. Holy Week begins with Palm Sunday and continues through Holy Thursday (when Holy Communion was instituted at the Last Supper) and Good Friday, when Jesus was tried, crucified, and buried. Lent is a time of stripping down to essentials, as each Christian focuses on his or her individual relationship with God. It is a time when Christians remember our baptisms, when Jesus washed away our sins, giving us newness of life to celebrate in the triumph of Palm Sunday and the glory of Easter, so Lent became a special time of study and prayer in preparation for their baptisms.
This year I have decided to give up television. This is huge for me because I have it on a lot. I live alone and even if I'm not watching I like the background noise. It's also nice to just zone out in front of the tv after working on school stuff and thinking thinking thinking all the time. To balance out my no tv, I am also limiting Facebook/MySpace, etc... to 30 minutes a day. This will keep me from replacing the tv with computer fun. Which would totally happen. And the final thing on my Lent list is NO SNOOZE BUTTON allowed. It might sound silly but I am embarassed to say how many times this button is pushed on some mornings. It is utterly ridiculous. So all these things combined are going to give me a lot more time to pray, read, get things accomplished for school, and anything else that needs to be done. I'm actually looking forward to this time very much. I know it will be really hard some days, especially on the weekends, but I know that it will be an amazing time with God. I also want to incorporate a day each week that I take time and do something for someone else. Whether for someone I know or don't know. I just need to reprioritize things and tune into what God is wanting for me. And not just for what His plans are for me, but what I need to be doing for Him. This time of year is a great reminder of all He did for me and for you. I want to really soak in these 40 days leading up to Easter in a way I never have before. I pray that you are blessed during this time as well.
I celebrated Valentine's Day (aka-Single Awareness Day) with my friend, Dana. We decided to make tacos and watch a movie. You know...really live it up. Ha. We did some pre-dinner grocery shopping and decided on Corn tortillas over Flour tortillas in an effort to be more healthy. We learned later that we should have gambled a little and indulged in the good stuff. So we bought our food and headed to the house to begin our culinary endeavor.
Dana chopping tomatoes
Me - browning the turkey meat
BEFORE we knew how the corn tortillas actually tasted.
My big mouth. Geez. I look like an idiot. :-)
The finished product. (minus the blue corn tortilla chips)
After eating the corn tortillas... Gross.
We decided to order a movie from On Demand and settled on Nights In Rodanthe. We thought it would be really good given the awesomeness of The Notebook. We were wrong. So wrong.
My review of Nights in Rodanthe
End of the night. Me and Dana = Good times
Also, my mom came by earlier in the day and brought me flowers, because that's what good moms do for their valentine-less children. haha. The roses are very pretty though. I'm blessed.
To update everyone on my last blog, because I KNOW that you have been wondering, I stayed up until 4 am Monday night finishing my project. It wasn't pleasant. Not one bit.
Tuesday was a long day. After work I went to the funeral home to pay my respects to a wonderful lady. My friend Tabitha's great grandmother passed away and she was definitely one of a kind and will be missed dearly. Her pastor told a story of her (in her late 80s/early 90s mind you) participating in a potato sack race with all the kids at church! Love it!
Wednesday after work I went to the first meeting with our small groups from church. We had a really great discussion and bible study. We are reading Habakkuk. We're talking about when God seems unfair and how we handle it. What do you do when you are in the valley and God seems far away? It was really interesting hearing everyone's points of view. I can't wait until next week.
Thursday was just one of those days. I was late to work (no surprise), had an explosion in the kitchen with a package of raisins (nothing like crawling around on the floor picking up raisins at 8:30 in the morning), and various other frustrations that were all a result of my current stress level from feeling overwhelmed by life. To de-stress afterwards, I completely ignored all school responsibilities and enjoyed watching Ugly Betty, Grey's Anatomy, etc.., talking on the phone, and spending way too much time on Facebook. I also got my hair cut and colored. Yay! The gray hair was definitely winning the battle on my head so it was nice to see them disappear.
(SwoooOoShhh...I'm ready for my shampoo commercial now.)
Today I discovered that (and sorry if everyone else but me knew this already) they have BAKED CHEETOS! Now of course I know this doesn't make them the healthiest of snack choices, but they are BAKED and that makes me feel a little bit better about my decision to eat them.
Chester Cheetah is the man.
Now I am off to get some work done! I have an Advocacy poster due on Monday and I have yet to start on it. At least it's not the night before...
Just to preface this...I have a project due tomorrow that I have barely worked on. YET, I have decided to write a blog and I have absolutely nothing exciting to talk about. This is a problem, right? The blog newness is like a shiny toy that I want to play with and learn more about. Blah Blah... and I'm a big stinkin procrastinator. I had all weekend to work on this project. I don't know why I couldn't motivate to do ANYTHING before now, but that's where I'm at. Maybe it's the weather? Sounds like a potentially good reason to blame this on? Maybe? The real problem is feeling completely overwhelmed. I just shut down when I feel that way. Like my brain short circuits because I have too many things going on. I hate it. I wish I was one of those overachievers that did everything way ahead of time. That would be so nice and stress free. But I'm not that way and I've been me for a long time and that's hard to change overnight. But maybe one day...
The rainy mess I had to battle on the way to school this afternoon. Boo Hiss.
"Rainy days and Mondays always get meee down..."
This was the turning point of my day. A little surprise of goodness in the candy dish at work. I LOVE flavored tootsie rolls. Thank you tootsie roll. You are my hero.
Never lose an opportunity to see anything that is beautiful. It is God's handwriting - a wayside sacrament. Welcome it in every fair face, every fair sky, every fair flower. - Ralph Waldo Emerson
Here is what I am a fan of... Beautiful days with gorgeous skies and lots of sunshine, walking and running on the Riverwalk, and good music. Here is what I am NOT a fan of... Small bladders, broken iPods, and being out of shape. Just in case there is any confusion. :-) Anyway... So my day has been okay today with a few bumps here and there. I went to bed way too late last night as a result of taking a long nap yesterday afternoon. That made it hard for me to get up this morning and I ended up not going to church. :-( I made a real effort, but the clothes beat me in the end. I need to do laundry in a bad way and I haven't put up the clothes from the last time, so basically...it was past time to go and I was having real issues with the clothing situation. So I accepted defeat and put pajamas back on. BUT, I had already made the decision to get out and run today so I did. The weather was incredible and I love being outside on days like today. And I love to run but haven't done it in ages. So yeah, I was pumped. I got dressed, drove downtown, and was ready to breathe the fresh air! I parked at UTC and got my iPod all set up and clipped on me. However, when I flipped the switch to ON and hit PLAY...it did not agree. Nothing happened. Nothing. I hit the button over and over, hoping it would figure out that it was Play time, but alas, still nothing. The light was green, it was fully charged, just broken. BOO! I cannot tell you how much I hate walking or running without music. Listening to my heavy breathing and sneakers hitting the pavement is not a good time. But I pressed on anyway. I'm so dedicated. On top of the iPod issue, I was dealing with the very great need to find a restroom pronto. Even though I used the bathroom TWICE in a 15 minute period before I left my house (just in case), I STILL felt like the dam was about to burst as soon as I parked my car. What the... GEEZ! And of course I was parked in a fabulous in between spot so that either way I went it was about a mile to a restroom. So I was forced to walk the first mile to avoid any accidents on the sidewalk. Once I got that taken care of, I was off! I did better than expected for the first half mile, then I started to feel the lack of gym time I have put in lately. My hip joints started to feel stiff and so I switched to a boring walk again. Aparently God was really wanting me to slow down, enjoy this wonderful day, and not have any distractions. *sigh* Not that this is a bad thing, but I wanted a nice run with cool music flooding my ears. Oh well, it was still a great work out. I really do live for days like today.
I took this as a very good sign that it was time to quit for the day...
After the Riverwalk fun, I had to go to Walmart and grocery shop. Ugh. I HATE grocery shopping...especially at Walmart on a busy Sunday afternoon. But what are you gonna do. No food = No choice. So I battled the crowd and came out alive. Yay for that. I did however walk in the door and find this as soon as I got home...