perder la vida

Learning to Live Missionally and Mindfully

Hello, Goodbye. December 31, 2009

Filed under: family,frenz,fun times,general information,mindful living — Katie @ 3:59 pm

It’s time once again to reflect on a great year. But, not only am I reflecting on a great year but also on a great decade. The decade began, as you know, with the potential for disaster. Though no computers crashed and the world didn’t end, my family encountered quite a disaster. Apparently my uncle inhaled too many smoke fumes from the fireworks and ended up in the hospital! Quite a way to ring in the new year, right? Other than that, the beginning of the decade was uneventful.

But, the decade itself was quite eventful. I graduated high school, sang in Carnegie Hall, went to Disney World three times, went in and out of college, experienced great loss, went to Honduras, led worship, left the Church, returned to the Church, became a Derek Webb fan, fell in love with New Orleans, adopted a dog, saw Alison Krauss in concert, built a house, moved about ten times, watched my friends get married, watched my friends become parents, discovered what I wanted to do with my life, and met some truly amazing people along the way.

It’s been a great decade. I am not who I thought I would be or doing the things I thought I’d be doing at this point in my life, but I really wouldn’t have it any other way. I’m finally looking forward to finishing college and I know exactly what I want to do with my life and exactly where I want to do it. I’m praying that the 2010’s (not sure what to call the upcoming decade…) includes student teaching in Greece, moving to North Carolina, working towards a Master’s (never thought I’d say that!), adopting another dog, traveling to Asia, getting an iPhone. 🙂

But first, before I can move forward, I need to look back at this past year. I wasn’t sure what to expect in 2009 and I’m beginning to think that’s the way to look at everything… with low expectations! I certainly didn’t have any big plans for 2009, but this has been one of my best years yet.

The year began with a “Friendship Day” with Miss Ashley Martin. We hung out all day and watched Tyler Perry movies and then semi-successfully made Hoppin’ John’s (a New Year’s Tradition). A few days after this, I started taking classes at the University of Alabama… something I swore I’d never do. The rest of the year was quite a whirlwind. Here’s a recap:

– January 21 – my sweet granddaddy passed away. Though it was sad, it was peaceful and my family and I enjoyed our last days and moments with him. A few days after, we had a Celebration of Life service (rather than a funeral) and man… it was awesome!!

– Went to Gulf Port for a mission trip. Learned how to skirt a trailer.

– Spent four hours in a car with Rob & Benji while traveling to South Alabama to see Misty & Bobby get married. Rescued a turtle on the way. Pretty sure it was a TMNT.

– Had an Easter Sunday picnic on the Quad with some incredible friends.

– Went to Tennessee with Rachele to renew her driver’s license and then drove back. That was a random day which included a tasty lunch at a cute little diner in Podunk, Tennessee.

– Traveled to Honduras! This was definitely a highlight of my year.

– Had my wisdom teeth taken out. Then had an allergic reaction. Times two. Then had severe dry sockets. This was definitely not a good experience!

– Went on a 10-day road trip with my mom up the coast and back. Saw Louisville, Cincinnati, Greenville & Guilford (ME), NYC, Philadelphia, Boston, Baltimore, and the Blue Ridge Highway. Rode in a sea plane. Spread my granddaddy’s ashes in Moosehead Lake. And I touched a zebra.

– Ended up in the E.R. one night thinking my intestines were obstructed. Just a kidney infection… you know, no big deal.

– Went to the beach with Rachele and did NOTHING. Except lay in the sun.

– Had a dream that I received a hefty financial aid package. Found out not long after that I did, in fact, receive a hefty financial aid package. 🙂

– Turned 24. Had a rockin birthday party.

– Interned in a kindergarten class (and survived!).

– Traveled to North Carolina (one of my resolutions!!) to seemy dear friend Alisa get married!!

– Rolled my first house (sorry, Chris McCay!).

– Determined what the heck I wanted to do with my life.

– Became a semi-avid football fan after attending the UA/TN game.

– Had a root canal. WAY FUN. Not.

– Went to Disney World for Thanksgiving with some of my extended family. Rode Mt. Everest not once, not twice, not…. okay, we rode it FIVE times. In a row.

– Finished my first professional semester at UA.

– Bought a ukulele.

And those are just the big moments. Lots of amazing little moments in between…. dates with Ashley at City Cafe, reading lots of incredible books, a mini-weekend in Birmingham with Carla, way too much time spent in the dentist’s chair, and lots more. This year really was an incredible one.

So, to wrap things up… it’s time for resolutions. I think I did pretty well with last year’s:

1. Start UA and work towards my degree (obviously) and towards getting accepted into Teach for America

Done. All A’s, both semesters.

2. Pay off my car loan!!!
Done. Waiting on the title!

3. TRAVEL! Even if it’s just to NC to see Alisa!
Done. LOTS of traveling this year!

4. Draw boundaries (and stick ot them) with the way I spend my time and energy.

Done. Though it was difficult and I’m still not that great at it!

This year’s resolutions are:

1. Travel to a state I’ve never visited. (I have been to about half so far.)

2. Try a new food/cuisine at least once a month and write about it.

3. Learn to sew/monogram and use the Cricket.

I don’t even put “read more” on my list of resolutions because I think I do that anyway.

What a year. My feeling is that 2010 is going to be a year of preparation… I’ll apply to two major programs this year (to do my student teaching overseas and to Teach for America). I could have a job contract by November 23 of next year. That freaks me out a little bit! So, hello 2010. You have a lot to live up to!


What the heck? December 28, 2009

Filed under: 1 — Katie @ 1:14 pm

I generally do not like posting any sort of political or controversial thoughts because… well my brain is all fluff and I never think about that stuff anyway. 🙂 But. Question.

How in the world does a man whose own father has written in saying his son has been radicalized and may participate in a suicide mission get through security and onto an airplane? How is he not a priority? And how the heck does HE get on a flight without being strip searched and I can’t even take my frickin coffee through security unless I buy it beyond the checkpoint??

I’m all about taking every precaution available and am more than willing to take off my shoes and take my laptop out of its case and dispose of any food or beverage items before the checkpoint and not leaving my suitcase unattended but…. it’s moments like these when I wonder if the government is doing these things to really and truly protect me or just to make me feel like they’re actually doing something?

Party crashers and an attempted terrorist attack make me think the government doesn’t have the first clue as to what the heck they’re doing.

I vote James “Sawyer” Ford for president.


Guessing. December 24, 2009

Filed under: 1 — Katie @ 9:34 pm

I definitely don’t think Christmas is about the presents, but… they sure don’t hurt anything. 🙂 A few years ago, I secretly opened half of my presents before Christmas and ruined the whole experience. So, needless to say, I do not even WANT to see my presents until right before Christmas. Though I love surprises, it’s hard to wait! So I am starting a new Christmas tradition…

I get to pick up each present ONCE. I cannot shake the box, but I can look for other hints (weight, shape, etc.). Then I make my guesses. Right now I have eleven presents under the tree. So far, I think I am getting:

1. A pair of TOMS

Actually: two travel coffee mugs in a shoebox

2. A second pair of shoes…. not sure why. Maybe house shoes? Or maybe it’s another gift wrapped in a shoebox, but there are definitely two shoeboxes under the tree.

Actually: a houndstooth coffee mug with a red “K” on it… wrapped again in a shoebox 🙂

3. Pajamas from Gap (this is a given)

Actually: two PJ sets… not from Gap (win!)

4. How Well Do you Know Jerry & His Friends (Seinfeld trivia book)

Actually: I did get this, but it was not wrapped. This book was actually Left to Tell by Immaculée Ilibagiza.

5. a GRIDDLER. Man if I really get one of those, I might fall out! If I don’t, that’s still okay. But whatever is in that big box is driving me crazy.

Actually: A 5-arm pants hanger!!! No joke. I actually asked for it, but I had no idea they were shipped in such big boxes!!

6. A UAB Gospel Choir CD

Actually: I did get this, but it was in my stocking. This CD was U2’s best of 1980-1990

7. Respectable Sins by Jerry Bridges

Actually: A Bible question & answer book

8. A Jim Shore “Beast” statue (from Beauty & the Beast)


9. End of the Spear DVD (disguised as a different gift. I think it’s packed in a box.)

Actually: a new pair of Adidas running shorts! I was way off!

10. A “Dunder Mifflin” t-shirt

Actually: I also did get this, but it was in my stocking. This was actually a pair of Alabama pajama pants!

11. And another book which I have yet to identify.

Correct! It was a book… the biography of Keith Green.

So. Maybe I sound materialistic. And spoiled. Well, I am both of those things. And I certainly can’t wait to see what’s underneath all that wrapping paper. But, truly, more than the excitement of opening my own gifts, I can not WAIT to see my mom’s face when she opens her gifts!! And I think everyone else will be pleased with what I chose for them… I love buying gifts! I also love baking gifts and hopes no one minds white chocolate popcorn as a Christmas gift. 🙂

Guessing was really fun! I was right about several of my gifts but the ones I thought I was getting were in my stocking, not under the tree. Mom’s reaction to her new-to-her mp3 player was priceless! Now if I could just remember to get her some headphones… 🙂


Since it’s Christmas… December 23, 2009

Filed under: family,frenz,fun times,ME — Katie @ 3:00 pm

It’s coming. Christmas is coming. Whether you want it to or not. I have been surprised by the Grinchy-ness of some people this year and even at myself… I honked & screamed at someone who cut me off the other day. If you know me, you know I am the calmest driver ever, so that was a big deal. I felt serious guilt afterward. But overall, I have been my usual giddy Christmas-loving self.

But something tragic happened this year that has put a damper on my Christmas. Seriously tragic. Here’s what happened.

After the SEC game was over (which, Bama won in case you’ve been living under a rock), I was so excited that I put up my Christmas tree in record time. Our tree is relatively small, but it is COVERED in ornaments. I love ornaments. The more you have, the more your tree sparkles! I was so excited about the tree this year. Somehow, it was more beautiful than ever. Naturally, I am in the habit of turning the Christmas tree lights on anytime I’m in the room. I figure you only have a Christmas tree up one time a year, so you might as well enjoy it whenever you can.

And then the unthinkable happened. Last week as I was sitting on my couch watching Lost (more on that later), I glanced over to admire my glittery glimmering happy Christmas tree. And my heart shattered into a million pieces.

The strand of lights on the top and the strand on the bottom…. were out. Only the midsection of the tree was lit. I was devastated! These lights have lasted a few years and I was planning to buy better ones next year. I thought these would survive until Christmas! But they did not. And what did I do?

You’d think I stripped that tree down to its aluminum core in order to re-light the tree or maybe that I’d hunt for the bad bulbs and replace them.

But no.

I just let it be.

So, here’s to partially lit Christmas trees. Here’s to enjoying Christmas no matter what. Here’s to hunting down the best decorated houses, giving gifts and seeing peoples’ happy faces, to eggnog coffee, to a Christmas morning pajama party at my Aunt’s. I hope you all have a fantastic Christmas, too! Don’t let the Grinch shrink your heart!


Coming to an End December 14, 2009

Filed under: frenz,fun times,jesus — Katie @ 2:22 pm

The fall semester has come and gone, the year is winding down, and my time as the 345 teacher at church is coming to an end. I committed to work each Sunday for a semester and my time is almost up (unless something changes, but for now… that’s the plan). Before it’s all over, I just wanted to stop and reflect on the past few months with the kids and what God has done throughout the semester.

I have to admit, I was a little weary of my commitment at first because it meant that I wasn’t going to be able to really help lead worship for four months. I was able to sing a few times during the second service, but it was a hassle and more trouble than what it was really worth. But, as the semester went on and I really got to know the kids, I knew I made the right choice. Working with kids can sometimes be exhausting (especially when you have sixteen in your class and you try to throw a party and decorate cupcakes!!), but I always leave the KidZone refreshed and smiling, glad that I spent part of my day with such fantastic kids.

I wish I had written down more of the hilarious stuff that happened or was said… this post would probably be a lot funnier if I could remember those things! One of my favorite moments was when everyone was laughing at something and Eli says, “We’re not laughing at you, we’re laughing with you.” Haha! So wise, even at four years old! I’m also proud to say that Jack finally learned my name about halfway through the semester. Poor thing has a lot of “K” names to remember, so at some point he just settled on calling me “Teacher.” Eventually, he remembered my name and hopefully he won’t forget it!

All the kids have been so much fun to teach. Their little personalities amaze me… how they each have a distinct way about them and each have their own preferences and interests. I have loved getting to know them and I hope to have the opportunity to continue watching them grow! That means babysitting, people. 🙂


Things I’d Like to Invent December 8, 2009

Filed under: 1 — Katie @ 1:44 pm

Every day, there are certain items I wish I possessed. With these items, my life would be easier, simpler, happier, and better. The sad part is that these items have not been invented yet. You’d think with the overabundance of life-altering inventions lately (Magic Bullet, ShamWow, Ab Circle Pro, and of course, the Snuggie) that someone would have already thought of these things. Well, they have not so, of course, I have to do all the hard work. Let me share with you some of the things I’d like to invent… or let someone else invent because, let’s be honest, I have no clue how to create prototypes, apply for patents, and hook up with the ghost of Billy Mays in order to get my product advertised.

1. Dark chocolate Cadbury eggs: Okay, really, I think all I’d have to do is write into the Cadbury egg company (Hershey) everyday and beg them to make a dark chocolate Cadbury egg. This idea came to me in a dream one night…. literally. I’ve been craving one ever since.

2. Deoderant strips: This is not my own idea. I think Jarrod or LeAlan came up with it several years ago, but this is something I’d really like to see. Instead of using bars or sprays, people could use deoderant strips (similar to Listerine strips). If you felt like you were starting to sweat, you just pop a D.O. strip on and it begins to activate as it melts! Don’t act like you wouldn’t use them…

3. Socks for ballet shoes: These might exist… but I want the ones I invent to be better, warmer, and more luxurious than anything that might be currently available. See, here is the problem: my shoe of choice during the winter is generally a ballet-type flat shoe. This means the majority of the top of my foot is exposed and the shoe itself is rather thin, so my feet usually freeze. I haven’t found socks that stay hidden AND are super warm. The socks I would invent would be a luxurious, soft, but dense fabric weaved together in a waffled fashion (like thermal underwear). You would also be able to buy footies with “toe gloves” (as I call them) that you could put under the sock, so you would get double protection. I might even find a way to make very thin wool socks. OOOOOH so warm. 🙂

I better act on these now. When I was a kid, I thought it’d be a great idea to put skates in your tennis shoes…. and look what I missed out on!! I really need to start raking in the millions, so I’m going to get to work on these things over Christmas break. That’s not really true…. because I’ll probably be playing a lot of Super Mario for Wii and watching Lost from Season 1…..


best year yet December 1, 2009

Filed under: family,frenz,fun times,general information,ME — Katie @ 1:31 pm

It’s really too early to do an end-of-year blog about what I’ve loved and loathed about this year, but when I stop and think about 2009, I can’t help but think of what an amazing year I’ve had.  I am not sure if the next thirty days can compare to the past 334.

It has been an interesting year filled with intense growth, travel, friendship, surprises, and more memories than my brain can hold.

I’m challenging myself to see how memorable I can make the last thirty-one days of 2009. I’m going to try to squeeze in one last road trip, one more party, one more Tyler Perry movie…. and then prepare to make 2010 even more amazing.
Cheers! It’s DECEMBER!