Wednesday, March 31, 2010

ice...trailer...bed...face...The First 24 hrs...

So let’s discuss the first 24 hrs of my bff’s arrival in the city. Cause you know…we’ve been separated for so long…I forget the hilarity and trauma that can ensue with the two of us.

Ok…so Holly and Chezi head up here last Tues. Early that morning, I was listening to the weather…which gave the surprise announcement that snow was heading our way that evening. Now here’s the deal…even with that prediction in the morning…because of the way the mountains surround the city…there’s really no telling what’s going to happen until the moment it actually happens. They can predict snow measured in feet- and we get a few flakes…or very easily, vice versa can happen. BUT…I do immediately call Holly…who was still in Texas…and told her to hurry and get her arse on the road. But you know…she didn’t really get out of town as early as hoped. AND she was taking the flatter, slightly longer route here to CS because she was pulling a trailer…so slight stress abounded.

Well…between 7:30- 7:45 p.m. I ran to the store for Welcome Home balloons. By the time I got back home, there was ever so slight misty rain in the air. I knew Holly was almost to town, so I thought all was well. Then…at 8:05ish Holly hits the edge of the city…and the mist immediately turned into light flakes. By 8:20…Holly is in the center of town…and there is a full blown blizzard occurring. It was INSANE I tell you. She’s talking to me on the phone…starting to panicking slightly…cause she’s suddenly skidding around with a trailer…and then…she runs out of gas. Ya…that’s right. Her gas light had dinged on about 5 minutes earlier…but she knew she’d be way more than ok till she got closer to my house…except for the fact she forgot to factor that she was pulling a trailer…and therefore using way more gas than normal. Oops.

SO...I jumped in the car with a gas tank and hurried off to rescue her. Now, I was out and about just 30 min. earlier…but it’s suddenly a whole different city. Snow is falling like crazy and blowing everywhere…people are skidding all over the place…it’s freakin FREEZING and in the hurriedness I forgot to grab gloves or anything.

PLUS…I soon realize that there is NO way she’s going to make it to my house pulling the trailer. There’s quite the incline up to my house…and it’s kinda nerve-racking anytime there’s ice. SOOOOO…I get to where she’s at…we make it to the gas station…and I come up with a new plan. I called a friend who lived just a couple miles down the road…but was still fairly level to where we currently were…and announced to him we were coming to park a trailer in front of his house. So off we go…with poor Holly now in her new city for only 45 minutes…running out of gas and having to learn to drive on ice, with heavy traffic, and pulling a trailer. Well…she actually gets stuck again trying to go up a sad little nothing of a hill…but then the nicest people ever jumped out with ropes…welcomed her to Colorado and pulled her till we were back on level ground again.
We finally make it back to my apartment about 9:45. Crazy, cold and slightly traumatized.

SO THEN…the next day…roads are clear (cause we take care of things like that, unlike some West Texas towns who refuse to and just leave a sheet of ice on the roads for a week) and we go get the trailer, unload it, return it, and come back home. We’re feeling highly ambitious…and desperately want some organization…so we decide the first thing we’ll do is set up Chezi’s bed. It’s a loft bed…so it’s gonna serve like a bunk bed…and instead of the desk under it...it’s just going to be my guest bed. Make sense? So…we make a plan...take the two sides into the room, lean one up against the wall, and the other against the foot of my guest bed cause we’re just gonna set it up around the bed to make it easy. Well…I grab the rail that’s gonna connect the two sides…and think “I’ll just go sit in between the sides and hold it while Holly does the screws. I proceed to sit on the bed…hear Holly scream…and BAM.

The bed…

fell on…

my face.

Ya, that’s right. The side that was leaning against the bed was knocked off balance and its giant iron self came crashing down on. my. FACE. It hit my forehead right above my eye and bridge. I really thought I had broken something. HORRIFYING pain. Once I realized there was no blood…and was kinda convinced nothing was broken…I just laid down and applied a bag of peas to my face. (which, I don’t even eat and was highly miraculous they were even in my freezer!) We were slightly concerned about a concussion…but that was probably because I declared the year to be 1776. I knew it wasn't...but for some reason it's what would pop into my mind everytime she asked. Plus, I just kept repeating the same phrase over and over… “a bed…fell on…my face”. I found the concept extremely humorous…although the side effects were not. A knot the size of a golf ball formed on my forehead...the entire left side of my face swelled up…I have a funky black eye...and I was having trouble seeing out if it for a couple days. (wasn't swollen shut or anything...but everything would just get blurry) Now, a week later…the knot is still there, but only marble sized (yay for bangs/fringe)…the swelling is almost all gone…I can see fine...and the eye bruising looks worse in some places but better in others...(Fyi- I again need to shout out my love and adoration for Bare Minerals…freakin hides EVERYTHING)

Oh…on top of all this I was still sick with a cold…and it hurt to put on make-up so I was just doing the Bare Minerals foundation…and trying not to wear eye make-up…but I was told SO many times at work how awful I looked... I finally forced myself to endure some eye shadow and eye liner. I know I look rough w/o eye make-up…but wow…such comments should be left to themselves. I’m sure they just thought it was my cold causing me to look so horrifying…but still.

So that was the first 24hrs on the Reunion Tour of Jenn and Holly.

And I’m happy to say that since then…things have calmed down so much…it’s almost boring.

Monday, March 29, 2010

birthdays and gratefulness

I didn’t get to post my gifts last week…cause life has been too insane! I’ve been sick, exhausted, and ridiculously busy…which...is actually...an extremely annoying combo. But, with only a few (ok, reality is closer to several) emotional breakdowns…all is well…and life feels a little more functional. Still busy, still crazy…but now manageable.

And in the midst of the craziness…I turned 34. Oy.

I actually didn’t care so much about this year’s bday…because as I’ve admitted before, I have a weird number thing, where some numbers make sense and some don’t…and some seem pretty or cooler than others….and well, I’ve always thought the number 34 was completely boring…and therefore I didn’t care about turning this age. (I know, I really should seek out some sort of professional therapy, or medication of some kind)

But I have to say…this was actually a fairly fabulous bday. The thing is…and this is all just facts…no need for pity or sympathy…but, the reality is…my bdays usually kinda suck. It’s usually because what I want to happen- no matter if it’s the simplest most basic of things…it never works out. Which then causes disappointment and sorrow abounds. ALSO- I can have plans with people for breakfast, lunch and dinner plans for the ENTIRE week of my bday…EXCEPT the night of (which is kinda the most important I think) my day. It’s the weirdest concept. And I know I’m loved and all…it just happens to be how it works out. So my dinner is usually just take-out with me alone at my casa. That sounds ridiculously pathetic…and I'm not always alone...just...you know...a lot.

But this year...I tried not to care AT ALL. And blah blah blah details…BASICALLY…I end up having a great birthday. I got to talk to lots of friends and family…I LOVED all my facebook posts throughout the day (I have some overwhelmingly funny and creative peeps, I tell you)…got off early, got my hair done and then that night, after an impromptu invite, had dinner with a group of friends. It was perfectly low-key and fantastic.

AND NOW….without further ado…I continue my gratefulness with a Birthday Edition list… (and ok, a few non-bday points just for fun…)

78- waking up to texts wishing me a great day

79- the fact that those texts didn’t wake me up as they were going off throughout the night

80- waking up early…and having a great morning w/God

81- daylight donuts for breakfast

82- precious words from friends and family on my fb wall throughout the day (and even some from unexpected people)

83- birthday greetings in many different languages from around the world

84- Katrine, my freakin ubber fantastic British/Norwegian friend making a video and uploading it on youtube singing the Norwegian Happy Birthday version (my fav version!) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uCh1XXR8MaI (really...this caused GREAT amounts of cheering, screaming and bouncing on my bed as I watched it over and over and over...)

85- birthday greetings exchanged like giddy school girls with Jenelle, my bday twin (we share same date AND year)

86- being sung HB by a coworker as I walked to my desk

87- getting off early

88- getting a free haircut

89- calls all day from loved ones

90- fantastic presents- from hysterical, to adorable, to completely practical

91-96- a friend, learning to listen to God and be obedient, getting me a dresser I wanted for my bday because she heard God tell her too

97- eating dinner with friends
~
98- frozen pepsi that was accidentally left in the freezer overnight…but was rescued in the morning- MINUTES before explosion (really…an itty bitty crack had just begun)

99- being trusted with secrets

100- my sister being so helpful in getting Holly packed and organized

101- Holly FINALLY making it up here to Colorado

102- ginormous flower headbands (because I really am a bowhead at heart)

103-104 unexpectedly finding THE perfect nightstand for my room…and actually convincing myself it was ok to buy it

105- getting to work at home instead of taking off sick days

Every good and perfect gift is from you, Father of Lights




holy experience

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

the end of the fast

So I finished the fast a couple of days ago. I can’t believe I made it through 40 days...with no cheating…and not even any justification that was really just cheating in disguise. Honestly, it wasn’t near as hard as I thought it would be…which is just a complete and total testimony of the awesome grace of God. Seriously. Yes, I did have moments of sadness or frustration…and WEIRD cravings for mcnuggets and other things I never eat…but for the most part…it was good. Although I’m still not a fan of the Boca…I did discover some other things at Whole Foods that were meat-like but made out of vegetables. Ok, that description sounds horrendous…but trust me, if I was ok with it…it’s not near that disgusting......and I may even continue to partake of them on occasion.

And because people have been curious...how much weight do you think I lost while not eating meat...and therefore by default, cutting out fast food, for 40 days....ummmmmm ya. 0. Ridiculous, annoying ZE-RO. I've known there was something seriously wrong with me...this just adds to the confirmation. *sigh* but I digress...

Now I’ll just be totally honest…I did have some problems during it. I listened to the things God was telling me to do…and then took them to an extreme myself. (what? me? shocking, I know) So things God was wanting me to work on…I translated to the words “finish to complete and utter perfection”. Mmmmhhhhmmm. It’s sick I tell you, I should see if there’s medication of some sort I could take. Anyways…when it got down to 2 weeks left, I started to panic…because if was more than obvious that my list of things God (I) wanted accomplished wasn’t going to happen. Praise God for friends that were praying with me during this time…and started to gently point out my craziness. Sooooooo…I lowered my expectations and started realizing God didn’t really put those finishing goals into play…and I felt slightly better. But then…when I realized by the last week that my lowered goals weren’t going to be met either…guilt, panic and anxiety started to set in. Now, last I checked, those things don’t come from God. They were totally Jenn-inflicted. I kept trying to ignore those feelings…but they were definitely lurking.

I wanted to do a whole Meat Fest 2010 starting last Saturday. But by Friday…the overwhelmingness of it all was setting in and I couldn’t distinguish what feelings were from God and what wasn’t…so I canceled it. In the back of my mind I was debating continuing the fast for a while longer…at the very least until I finished getting my house in order. (I am down to the very end of it…which involved 3 boxes of randomness I’ve never unpacked since my move 3 yrs ago- and now they ARE unpacked…and unfortunately scattered all over my living room) So Saturday I wake up…and I am a MESS. I’m all cry-y and crazy and can’t decide if God wants me to stop fasting or not. I think part of it was the false guilt…but part of it was that you connect with God on a whole other level while fasting…and I didn’t want to see that part end either…thus, the array of emotions.

Sooooo…pretty much the time I had finally decided…on my own…that I would just continue fasting for a while longer…my phone rings. And precious Kelseyanna was in my hood and wanted to stop by. Of course she’s all excited and wanted to know if I had chowed down on anything yet. Which, I replied that I hadn’t…and then uncontrollable tears started to flow! I still couldn’t tell if it was guilt or grieving or what. So she talked with me a while…and told me what she was thinking…and this little prophet-in-the-making was totally speaking God’s heart. As she was talking- I very clearly and blatenly heard God say- “You MUST end your fast and eat meat today.” Oy!
But ok.

So long story short…I quickly made impromptu plans to have dinner at Texas Roadhouse that night. Throughout the rest of the afternoon, I’d still have moments of confusion and debate in my head…but as I stilled myself…and listened to God for one final “yay or nay” …I clearly heard Him say… “Jenn, the fast is over. If you choose to keep going, it becomes penance, and I don’t do penance.”

Aaaaaaaaaaand that pretty much sealed it. The argument was done. I was still slightly sad, but not at all consumed by guilt. I do get that there were principles God wanted to establish in my life…not perfect. And I dearly loved and will forever cherish the things that happened between me and God during this time. I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

So I joined a few friends to partake in some steak. I was so appreciative of being surrounded by love and support at that moment. And I am so completely and utterly thankful of the love, support, and prayers of everyone throughout the last 40 days. I wouldn’t have made it without that. I am truly a blessed girl.

Monday, March 15, 2010

pausing the hecticness to be thankful

OK, I promise I DO have other things to say than besides this gift list...it's just been a ridiculously hectic crazy busy last week with no time to write. So I will update on life and thoughts later this week hopefully...but I think it's important to keep the list going so here we are..............................and why forgoodnesssakes am I feeling the need to apologize for thankfulness?

and so...

51- Holly and Chezi moving to Colorado!!

52- the fact that I can finally talk about their move on the www after months of not being able too

53- finding out a friend only had injuries to his hand after being involved in a horrible car accident that could have easily killed him

54- the playlist on my blog that soothes my soul and rises up my spirit when I need it

55- creating a couple of new outfits just by putting together pieces I’ve already had for years

56- finishing small projects at my house that have been put off for a ridiculously long time

57- spring snow

58- the smell of downey

59- discovering the vast diversity (culture, religion, etc) of my friends as I looked over my facebook friend list

60- Sabbath Saturdays

61- decorating blogs

62- free route 44 receipts from Sonic

63- being able to complete a project at work after waiting for months for the information needed to finish it

64- discovering I can actually live (temporarily) without meat

65- sweet pictures of two more precious girls making their debut into this world

66- more friends coming to our Tuesday nights

67- borrowed Alias seasons from a friend

68- surprise visits from a friend (even if it was a Saturday morning) ;-)

69- deeply encouraging words from a past leader after stepping out and telling him some things I believed were on God’s heart for him

70- being completely secure in my identity- because I KNOW who I am in God because of the New Birth

71- Big boat Bertha…even though it’s not my ideal mode of transportation

72- facebook telling me who’s birthday it is

73- being told by a stranger that I was the one with the correct perspective (which of course always seems to be different than the normal) on a blog regarding girls and modesty

74- PBS special confirming I wasn’t completely crazy or stupid because it seemed to me that the Gospels give two different time frames regarding the death of Jesus

75- the freedom DVR gives me

76- listening to God telling me to stop for gas one evening and not waiting till morning…and then waking to freezing temperatures and snow covered roads

77- breaking my meat fast with wonderful friends…and a tasty ribeye


Every good and perfect gift is from you, Father of Lights




holy experience

Monday, March 8, 2010

gift list continues

So this is my official Monday “joining in grateful unity” post. I’ve actually liked looking for things to add to my list. Yesterday morning alone, while standing in front of the church singing, I saw a dozen new gifts. Some are too deep for words to express, but I can share a couple.

and so it continues...


20- leading worship at church

21- watching people truly get the message of a particular song and see them connect with God as they worship

22- seeing people baby step out of their comfort zones during worship…lifting hands, closing eyes, stepping off to the side to be with God alone, etc.

23- social media and blogs, allowing me to stay connected with the friends I’ve been blessed with around the world

24- a job that I can wear jeans to if I want that day

25- closets finding order

26- a fantastic earring collection

27- warm fuzzies of Tyler YWAM memories every time an Enter The Worship Circle song comes up on my playlist

28- watching a friend begin to use the prophetic gift that is inside of her

29- finishing a book

30- Crafty Things and Wings nights

31- being taught how to knit

32- sharing in the excitement of someone finding out they’re getting their very own apartment after years of not having their own place

33- given a free 4 drawer filing cabinet after months of searching for a cheap 2 drawer one

34- Tuesday night dinners as we break our fast together

35- sensing the kisses of God on my forehead

36- a job that I can listen to teachings or the music of my choice to get me through my day

37- finally able to work out a plan with a friend after weeks of desperately trying to piece one together

38- my mechanical geniusness and ability to be able to figure out the workings of almost anything

39- bring your baby to work days

40- last minute dinner plans involving curry and great conversations

41- free hats to add to my collection

42- warm fuzzies of Norway YWAM memories every time I spray my Strawberries and Champagne body spray

43- days off to sleep and rest to fight off a bad cold virus

44- seeing immediate answers to prayers prayed

45- parking in a garage (however small it may be) so that I don’t have to scrape ice off my windows in the morning

46- reading through old notes and cards as I’ve cleaned out my closet

47- remembering that Soleil Moon Frye is following me on Twitter

48- Kelly Cutrone retweeting me

49- smelling like a Princess everyday (well, according to Vera Wang)

50- learning new benefits for cabbage


Every good and perfect gift is from you, Father of Lights





holy experience

Sunday, March 7, 2010

one damsel not in distress

So really, I'm just going to blatantly brag...well, cause it's my blog and I can...and I'm dang proud.

I got one step closer to being a grown-up a couple weeks ago. Finally, after YEARS of not having one...I FINALLY got a headboard for my bed. Gots to stinkin love Craigslist people! I wasn't even looking for one at the moment...there are a list of things I desperately need for my house...and that wasn't in the tip top of the list. But...as I was perusing CL for funsies -that is a great past-time people...have you SEEN the ridiculous things people post...and then the price they are asking for it? HIGH entertainment. Sometimes...my friend and I just sit on the phone, scanning the lists of our cities and sending each other links over IM and then laugh hysterically for hours. No, I promise we're not on crack. Trust me...it's so much fun. If you'd like to be conferenced in the next call...just let me know...

ANYWAYS....I'm totally digressing....I'm just here to proudly declare that today...I hung it up....ALL. BY. MYSELF. I done figured out the stud location....leveling....and even how to ever so slightly cheat it when it was still slightly crooked by the end.

It's blue suede and lovely. I think I'll sit in my bed tonight, snuggled up against it, and finish my book.

Here's the pic! (fyi- I left off all my pillows so I could just get the headboard....)



Now if I can just get a kitchen table...I might officially become an adult then....

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Gratitude Attitude

So I, too, have decided to join The Gratitude Community at http://www.aholyexperience.com/. I found this blog via http://joshandpaigeallen.blogspot.com/ who found it via another blog. Gots to love the www! (and I should state that I blatenly stole those 2 first lines FROM Paige's blog entry...cause I'm cute that way) 

Truthfully, I kept putting off starting it. And this week the realization finally hit me as to why that was. Even though I am a girl who tends to see the beauty and goodness in everything…deep down I was scared I wouldn’t be able to come up with 1000 gifts and disappointment would abound. That’s a tragical and ridiculous concept isn’t it? There was something about coming up with an actual list that made me fearful I’d see less things than usual...or that putting a number on them would suddenly make it seem not enough. Maybe it is just because of the Eeyore Funk I’ve been in (but coming out!) lately. But this week God has really been pressing me to actually start my list. And shock, but not shocked, within just a few hours of having a piece of paper out on my desk to randomly start jotting things down…I’m already up to 38 by just thinking about the last couple weeks alone! That concept alone amazes and fascinates me.

I’m going to get an actual journal to keep track of both my 1000 gifts…AND my notes of discovery of how God is my Portion. (see previous post) THAT’S going to be a dang phenomenal journal, my friends…perhaps someday, it could even end up in the Smithsonian. (ok, well, probably only if I accidentally leave it there on a bench)

I was going to just post my ongoing list at random times…but as I was re-reading the original blog this morning…I saw that Monday seems to be the day of choice to post your list of gifts…so I’m giving into peer pressure. (except for today of course) I choose to see it as an act of unity more than caving to normalcy...


And so it begins…


1- quiet moments with God, in the still of the morning, snuggled in my big round chair and sipping coffee

2- discovering Brian and Jenn Johnson’s music…and their new ‘Love Came Down’ cd

3- the faithfulness and grace of God as He is fully seeing me through my 40 day fast

4- the hopefulness and excitement of a new season of life beginning the 2nd weekend of March

5- official April travel dates being set for a friend coming to visit from the land down under

6- making it all the way through the book of Job for the first time in my life

7- watching friends tap into the depths of the heart of God

8- a job that doesn’t care if I’m a little late in the mornings

9- finally finding a real and actual answer as to why Catholics specifically fast meat during Lent

10- recognizing the specific friends God has given me to help me along my journey

11- starting a new book

12- coffee and conversations with a mentor and friend

13- seeing pictures of a brand new life coming into this world and forever radically changing her mother’s existence

14- finding out new life has been conceived

15- accomplished baby steps toward a life of order and organization

16- getting a headboard…for the first time in over 10 yrs

17- dear relationship slowly finding a way to reconnect and stop the pattern of the past

18- creativity of a friend coming to help rearrange my house- and being able to add more furniture, yet still look bigger and more open

19- Wearing my multi-colored thrift shop sweater that makes me feel cozy…and a little bit Josephish


Every good and perfect gift is from you, Father of Lights




holy experience