Monday, September 20, 2010

It's Never Too Late...

To Read a Good Book How was your weekend? I had a great weekend, but it flew by way too quickly! Friday, I had dinner with my friend Nicole, Saturday Michael and I invited our friends over to watch football all day, and Sunday I started reading a new book that I could barely put down. Though watching SEC football and stuffing my face with good food while hanging out with everyone was fun, the highlight of my weekend just may have been reading this great book! I joined a small group through our church this semester. It is a women's young professionals bible study, and we are reading Francine Rivers' collection called Lineage of Grace. As the collection states, these are stories of five women whom God chose - Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba, and Mary. Each was faced with extraordinary and even scandalous challenges, but each took great personal risk to fulfill her calling. Each was destined to play a key role in the lineage of Jesus Christ, the Savior of the World. The first story I read was about Tamar. She was treated like a slave, abused by two husbands who left her childless and widowed at 18. She even prostituted herself to fulfill what she believed was her destiny because she had faith and patience, and it is what she had to do to survive. I won't spoil the end...but the story is amazing, and I am so eager to read the next. All I could think about is how the little things in my life (which is amazingly blessed compared to hers) make me impatient and complain a lot, but this woman survived so much and she never complained! This is a great book for me because I sometimes feel that I have given up so many chances for God to use me. If you feel like your life lacks spiritual meaning, go and pick up this book, and you will change your mind. Then share the book with a friend. The best part for me is that I get to share this experience with 11 great women! It's Never Too Late to Read a Good Book It's one of life's great simple pleasures. Teake a journey. Relax. Learn. Go back in time. Or forward. Be inspired. Or challenged. Share.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Pic of the Day

Yesterday, my friend Jenn and I had lunch before heading to downtown Birmingham for the annual Art Walk. It was so hot, but it was fun to see so many people downtown supporting our local artists.

On our way back to the car, I had a wonderful opportunity to take a picture of our old City Federal Building. The sky was beginning to cloud up and produce a Birmingham afternoon storm, and I just thought it was so beautiful.

A little piece of my own art...


Saturday, September 11, 2010

It's Never Too Late...

To Remember I remember exactly where I was 9 years ago today when we witnessed the horrible attacks on September 11, 2001. I was a freshman at Henderson, and I was sitting in my dorm room getting ready to head to my 8 a.m. class when I saw the video of the first plane crashing into the the World Trade Center. I remember how long it took me before I realized what I was watching was actually happening and was not an amateur video of some other place at some other time. It was the most shocking scene I have witnessed to this day, and though it happened a thousand miles away, I along with everyone around me, was terrified at what else could happen to us! I cannot believe it has been 9 years since these attacks because it still seems to be a fresh that remains a topic of discussion for many every day. It was a day that caused more hatred and racism than we all thought possible, it changed political views, peaceful citizens turned to anger and smaller acts of racism and terrorism on our own soil, and it launched a war that has killed thousands and still rages today. Unfortunately it is the hatred and violence these attacks caused still making headlines today, the most recent headline being Gainsville, Florida Pastor Terry Jones' plan to burn Korans as a protest against a plan for an Islamic cultural center to be built close to the site of the 911 attacks. So far the Korans have not been burned, but what has occurred is a backlash of both Christians and Muslims coming together in the name of peace and community to show that Pastor Jones' act is just as despicable as that of the terrorists 9 years ago. To me, he is only giving the terrorists exactly what he wants, and he is out of his mind. Fortunately, in the wake of the increasing racism against Muslims that have occurred in our country, there are people who have become more open-minded and realize that Muslim is not Muslim, just as Christian is not Christian. There are many forms of both religions, and millions of Muslims are ashamed and don't support the acts of the radicals 9 years ago. I remember the fear, confusion, and anger I felt 9 years ago. I also discovered a sense of patriotism and pride in being American because I knew we would bounce back and become stronger, but we can't move forward with hate in our hearts. What I choose to remember is the good that came from this day, and the selfless acts of heroes who exhibited the true American Spirit. It is their legacy that we should remember! It's Never Too Late To Remember Our memories are a treasure trove - our living photo album. All the pivotal moments are captured there. Even some we've jammed into the dark recesses. Take time to visit your memories. Spool through them. Enjoy them. Be sobered by them. Learn from them. Then add to them.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

It's Never Too Late...

To Simplify Your Life For Labor Day Weekend, I had some extra time off, so I drove to Arkansas to have a girls' weekend with my mom to see her new house. I know she was so excited for me to see her cute little country house, and she and my aunt have been working like crazy to get the place decorated perfectly. My mom has a place of her own, and I am so proud. It is a simple place, but a wonderful place that makes you feel like home the moment you walk inside. It is peaceful and comfortable. There's no fussiness about her home, just a perfect simple place filled with her and filled with love, and I didn't want to leave. My mom has worked very hard to stand on her own two feet, and I am very proud of her for making the decision to simplify her life and rid herself from the burden of debt and material things, and instead focus on herself, her relationships with her family and friends, and the newfound art of having fun! I had so much fun visiting her, and I can see the joy in her eyes now that she is loving the simple things in life. There is a lot to be said for how she lives! Here are some photos from this weekend!

Scarlett and her Gimme (Gimme is my mom's grandma name!)

A hummingbird outside of my mom's window

Her amazingly peaceful view of her backyard.

Her cozy den perfect for reading and hanging out! My aunt Paula made the awesome window treatments! Scarlett enjoying my mom's beautiful living room! She loved looking out the front door at the country view!

My mom found so many great items from flea markets, yard sales, and antique stores! She did an amazing job on a budget!

It's Never Too Late to Simplify Your Life... Every day our lives seem entangled. Work often dominates And swamps our lives. Balance is hard to find. Locate your real priorities. Untangle them. Keep only the essentials. Give away, or lose, the others. The simple things are the most valuable. I don't think my mom would mind me saying how hard this year has been for her, but because she fought for the simple things and located her real priorities, she is happier than she has ever been! I love you mom!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

It's Never Too Late...

To Cheer for a Team It's September 1, which can mean only one thing
It's 3 days 'til Football Time in Tennessee!

Hands down, college football is my favorite sport, and I love this time of year! There's nothing better than coming together with people from all over the US and enjoying great food and sports together! I especially love it when the weather cools, and we get into the heart of the SEC season when all the major teams play each other. It is so great to me that all of our friends cheer for different teams, but it doesn't matter as long as we are together, having fun, and cheering for the SEC!

I don't know how the VOLS are going to do this year, but I can't wait to head down to LSU and cheer them on! It may be the only game Michael and I can go to this year, so we are both eagerly awaiting October 2. I've never been to LSU, but I hear it's a great time!

The Razorbacks are still close to my heart, and I think they are going to do so well this year. I'll be cheering them on every week too! They deserve a good year!

No matter what team you cheer for, being a fan is fun! It makes life a little bit sweeter!

2010 UT Football Schedule 09/04/10 Tennessee Martin

09/11/10 Oregon 09/18/10 Florida 09/25/10 UAB 10/02/10 at LSU 10/09/10 at Georgia 10/23/10 Alabama 10/30/10 at South Carolina 11/06/10 at Memphis 11/13/10 Mississippi 11/20/10 at Vanderbilt 11/27/10 Kentucky

Cheers to a great football season!

It's Never Too Late to Cheer for a Team

Turn your attention outward.

Find a sport you love.

and a team you admire or pity.

Follow their fortunes.

Get on board

Lend your support.

Give them your passion.

Savour the highs and lows.

Enjoy the ride.