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!

 

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. 🙂

 

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!

 

People I’m Said to Resemble October 27, 2009

Filed under: delerium,frenz,fun times,general information,ME — Katie @ 3:16 pm

For the past ten years,I’ve been told I look like someone else. It all started on a vacation with my extended family in Panama City Beach. Several of us (aunts, uncles, cousins, siblings, parents… you get the picture) went on this boat called the Yellow Screamer. This boat is a tourist attraction that simply takes you far out in the ocean and speeds through the water up one way and back another. During the ride, one of the tour guides joked about how the other tour guide resembled Donny Osmond.

This is when my life changed forever.

One of my aunts jumped up and said, “Well, my niece looks like Sandra Bullock!”

OH. GOD.

Everyone was looking at me. Since that day, I have been stopped, questioned, followed (no joke!), and given strange looks all because I apparently resemble someone else. Sandra Bullock is the most popular look-a-like, but I have had some others over the years. I’ll let you weigh in on who you think I look most like!

That’s Ashley Judd, Fran Drescher, Jules Asner, and Sandra Bullock….

You be the judge! I just think I look like me.

 

Things I Don’t Want to Do… on facebook. August 27, 2009

Filed under: delerium,frenz,frustration,reviews — Katie @ 7:57 pm

For over four years now, facebook has provided me with hours upon hours of mind-numbing, unimportant, and menial entertainment. What started, for me, as a way to connect with my new fellow University of Montevallo students became an all-entrancing gadget in which I could post all my favorite movies, rant and rave about how awesome I am in the “about me” section (to which has currently been reduced to read, “About Me: I have an awesome life.”). It grew into a tool in which I could have a virtual bulletin board where I could display all my favorite “pieces of flair”. I spent hours searching through flair. I could write on my friends walls about hanging out and getting together, so that the whole world would know that me and the other person had something to do other than play on facebook. Usually, though, the hang out never happened. And still isn’t happening. I could create a virtual library, where you could see all the covers of the books I have read. And, of course, I could make things FBO (“Facebook Official”) when relationships got serious…. or un-serious.

Today, facebook’s membership has been extended to include people such as my mother. A sixty-two year old retired gal who likes to randomly stalk (and then comment) on my posts. I should remember that she can read this. (And that she will probably read this blog post, so I better be careful!). Facebook has become Town Square, at least in the virtual world. Everyone is there. I have more “friends” than necessary. I tried to clean up my friends list yesterday to no avail. There are people I don’t really talk to, but I’m nosey, so I want to still know what is going on in their life. That is S-A-D. I decided only to delete the people I actually did not know or no longer had any relevant communication with. I think i deleted about ten people. TEN. Out of over 900. Again, that is S-A-D.

Lately, if you’re like me, you’ve been bombarded with invitations to causes, games, quizzes, groups, and events. And you’ve probably already read about a bazillion blogs or seen several videos that complain about facebook. Well, hate to break it to you… but if you’re reading this, you can add it to your list. I don’t normally complain about facebook, but…. today has been a special day filled with lots of unexpected events so I feel like a good facebook rant is a must. You might be asking yourself at this point, “Self, what frustrates Katie about facebook?” Well, here’s your answer: all the stuff you ask me to do or put out there for me to read that I don’t want to do, read, see, or think about!

I have compiled a list:

1. I do not want to be your friend… if I don’t know you! Who are you and why are you stalking me, stalkery people? The least you can do is clarify who you are and why you want me to be your friend. Then I’ll think about adding you.

2. I do not want to accept your FarmTown gifts. I DON’T EVEN HAVE A FARM! I tried to have a farm, but I apparently suck at harvesting crops so it died. Then I got rid of FarmTown, yet you still want to bestow upon me gifts of seeds, plows, and recently acquired farm-handy items. Let me repeat: I DON’T HAVE A FARM. Therefore, your wagon will sit on my fancy virtual city lot unused and unappreciated.

3. I do not want to fill out a survey in which I am “required” to elaborate on my first kiss or any other PDA-esque moment in my life. Gross. And I don’t want to know those things about you, either!

4. I do not want to see your smoochy smoochy cuddly wuddly messages to your girlfriend/boyfriend!

5. I do not want boycott anything, especially restaurants that were established in part by a good friend of mine. Duh, don’t send that to me.

6. I do not want to read your depressing status updates. I understand that we all have bad days and want to rant about them… heck, I event rant about them via my statuses. But, really. Your life can’t be that bad! SOMETHING good has to happen from time to time!

7. I do not want to be tagged in super ugly pictures of myself. I’m sorry, I’m vain. I know it. Thank God for the untagging tool.

8. I do not want to chat with you EVERY SINGLE TIME I am on facebook. This has since become less of an issue in recent weeks/months, but when facebook chat first started, it seemed like an IM-ing free for all. Use in moderation, people. Moderation.

9. I do not want to read about how you hate Monday or how you are thanking God it’s Friday or how there are only so many hours left until the weekend, your day off, your vacation, your long-awaited source of relief. Mainly because Fridays and weekends are just as busy for me and I get jealous.

10. Last but never least, I DO NOT WANT to read about what you’re doing at every single second! (This applies to Twitter, too!). No one wants to know what you have for lunch every day, no one cares if you go to the gym every day or not, no one wants to know about the billboards you pass as you’re driving to your vacation destination, no one wants a play-by-play of your life. No one. Except God. And you don’t need facebook or Twitter to access him.

There it is, folks. I hope you did not read this in its entirety because it will only confirm that I have had 1) way too much free time on my hands and 2) way too much coffee. Basically, I think having a job and classes again will help with my animosity towards the facebook. But, for now…. this is just how I feel so deal with it!

 

Getting older’s not so bad when you have friends like mine August 15, 2009

Filed under: family,frenz,ME — Katie @ 11:14 am

What I want most for every birthday is to be surrounded by people I love and to see them happy. I always make a big deal out of my birthday because it’s an excuse to get people together and be a host (one of my passions!). I love seeing people in conversation, watching them discover each other, laugh at one another, and build relationships. Maybe my passion is people…. (I’m trying to find my passions in life, if you can’t tell). Last night’s birthday shin-dig was certainly one to remember.

It started with Rachele and me discovering how unqualified we are to light a grill. You’d think it’d be easy….. but, no. About twenty matches later…. we had flame. Then we closed the grill. Then we opened it. Then the flame was gone. So, Rachele tells me to pour more lighter fluid on it. . . . . DO NOT DO THIS! Flames will leap at you! But, we eventually got it going and everyone got to grill their favorite foods while Rachele and I made Unintentional Sliders. 🙂

After eating way too much white chocolate popcorn, we did the cake/presents thing and…. let me just say, I got some awesome gifts. First of all, Stephen and Susanna gave me The Shell. This shell is no ordinary shell… it is a perfectly formed conch shell that Stephen and Susanna found in Hawaii while on their honeymoon. Stephen planned a long, romantic walk down the shores of Maui and they happened to stumble upon this shell and found a long-lost love letter in it. Okay, that is all a lie…. it actually came from a shell shop in Florida and they had it on display at their house and I asked for it…. so I got it. I love my friends. Rachel and Valentino gave me what we all thought was going to be a pair of earrings or a special coin or a rock from Jerusalem………………. but it was a pickled sausage (and a gift card to Target!). Ashley made me a giant cookie cake, which I ate all of… Nicole brought me a pack of OREOS!!!!! Rachele brought me some BEAUTIFUL gerbera daisies, which I pray last for a really long time. Jon (not Quitt) got me Donavon Frankenreiter’s latest album…. and Ashley Atkins….. She bought me Office Space. Gifts are one of my love languages and my friends definitely hit the jackpot last night.

So, all in all, my extended birthday celebration so far has been excellent! Tuesday is going to be relatively normal except that I’m getting my hair washed and cut and then having dinner at the Cotton Patch. I love birthdays. I love my friends. I love love. Love love love love love.