Friday, January 30, 2009

little me

I was reading through some old posts (4.5 years old already?) and it made me laugh. I remember being 19-20 years old. I really thought that I was a full-fledged adult. I was all ready to be on my own, get married, start a little family, and live happily ever after.

Being 19 is a dangerous age.

It's funny being 24 now and in a similar place in far as getting married goes anyway. I have been on my own for over 3 years, financially independent of my parents (I think that was the proudest moment of my dad's life). I have learned a lot about life and am glad that I didn't get tied down at 19.

19 is definitely dangerous.

I don't really know how to put it any other way. I see a lot of 19 year olds go through similar situations, all the while thinking themselves very grown up. I think that 23-24 have been big years of growth for me. I am learning a lot about myself and others as well as how to get along nicely with my fellow humans.

Not to say that I have it all figured out. (That is a 19 year old attitude.) But I feel like I'm definitely in a better place in life. I'm sure in another 4.5 years I'll be posting again saying how glad I am not to be 24 anymore. C'est la vie!

Praise God that I'm done being 19!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

life is beautiful

This past week I went to the March for Life in Washington, D.C. I joined over 300,000 other pro-lifers as we marched from the mall to the Supreme Court on the 36th anniversary of Roe v. Wade. We were there to march against abortion and to stand up for life from conception to natural death.

This was my second time going and it was very different from the first. I went with Mary and Jon this year rather than Iowans for Life. Mary works for KWKY, the Catholic radio station in Des Moines, and Jon volunteers to do a show called Martyrs of the Third Millennium which he was taping interviews for. M3M was inspired by a quote from JPII that I can't find right now. :)

I was amazed to hear the profound things that so many people said. How wonderful to see people inspired by the Spirit. The person who probably gave me the most hope, however was Fr. Frank Pavone of Priests for Life. He spoke of hope within the pro-life movement. The hope is not from how many people come to the MFL or how hard we pray or protest against abortion. Our hope and our help is from God. He alone can make it happen. And with a pro-choice president, we are tempted to let our hope fade. This is silly, however, when we realize that God is in charge. He can overcome this desipite what Obama does to unravel our work and regardless of how hard we work.

Being at the MFL has inspired me. I see the universality of the Church as well as the goodness of humanity. I am relieved to remember that God's triumph is not about me. :) What a good deal!

At the vigil Mass (where ever 16,000 people crammed into the National Shrine and the opening song took 30 minutes because there were so many priests there), Cardinal Justin Rigali of Washington State had something inspiring to say:

"Are we prepared to say yes to His will without counting the cost? [....] Do not be afraid of Christ. He takes nothing away and gives you everything."


Jesus, fill us with hope and help us to say YES to You!

Saturday, January 17, 2009


I just finished watching The Scarlet and the Black, a 1983 film starring Gregory Peck and Christopher Plummer. It is a true story, based on the book The Scarlet Pimpernel of the Vatican, about a Msgr. O'Flaherty who helps Allied POW's hide from the Nazis during their occupancy of Rome during WWII. It's almost a 3 hour film, but very inspiring and very worth watching.

The first time I watched it was right before I left for India. I was so nervous and really didn't want to go anymore. I questioned why I thought it was a good idea in the first place. Now, watching it again after 2.5 years, I am at the same crossroads on the eve before I leave for the March for Life. I don't know why I am so nervous about this. Maybe it has something to do with the sentiments of our new president, maybe it has something to do with not being there with the group I usually go with, I don't know.

But as I watched The Scarlet and the Black, I was so inspired by the bravery of Msgr. O'Flaherty. He was truly an example for all of us to follow when it comes to standing up for what we believe in and supporting the dignity of life.

God give me courage.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


I made cookies today! That's right...a nice change from cake. :) I had gotten [myself] some cake decorating books for Christmas, and one of the books dedicates a nice section to cookie decorating. It looked super easy, just pipe royal icing to outline to cookie and fill with thinner royal icing.

Well, the whole process took me 4.5 hours. No wonder most sugar cookies are little blobs with some sprinkles on top! It was crazy! I also now understand why Starbucks can charge $5 for those cookies. With what I get paid as an RN, I would be able to buy a lot of $5 cookies for the 4.5 hours it took me to make these 20!

The book I got also showed how to make pretty flowers with royal icing! So I tried with the leftover...

As you can see, my flowers need a little work! But all in all it was a fun way to spend some time that I didn't know what else to do with!

I was going to make the cookies for work, but after the time and effort I put into them, I decided against it. I knew they would be quickly devoured by nurses who weren't necessarily hungry or appreciative of how hard I had worked.

Instead I decided to make them as little gifts to a select few. :)


I've been trying my best to get back in touch with God after a lot of complacency and He is really welcoming me back!

I am starting off by improving in my prayer life, which is going well. Ryan and I are also praying more together and spending less time doing "other things"...which has been really fruitful.

I find myself realizing more and more how I idolize marriage. Well, not relly marriage persay as much as rings, weddings, planning, taking control, etc... It's a big distraction. :)

So I've been praying about that recently and God is showing me a lot. Today I was a Adoration with Ryan and felt God telling me to read pg 376 of the Bible, which was 2 Kings 23. It was about King Josiah destroying the idols that Isreal had turned to.

Before him there had been no king who turned to the LORD as he did, with his whole heart, his whole soul, and his whole strength, in accord with the entire law of Moses; nor could any after him compare with him. 2 Kings 23: 25

So it's been good! I've felt really inspired to turn back to God with my whole heart, whole soul, and whole strength! God is faithful! I find myself trusting Ryan's judgement more as I let go of control more and trust in God. Life is good.

Praised be Jesus!

Monday, January 12, 2009

sickest ever

Let me begin by stating that I am horribly afraid of bugs.

I'm fairly convinced that bugs are teaming up as we speak to plot out my demise.

That being said, contrary to popular belief, I am fine with bugs when they are in their natural environment. Their natural environment, however, is not my food.

So today I decided to eat some pasta for dinner. I measured out one cup of rotini noodles and noticed there was only a small amount left and decided to make the rest. As I was pouring it out, though, I noticed some dead bugs in the bottom of the box, which was disgusting. Even more disgusting was the fact that they actually weren't dead. I noticed that when I freaked out, spilled the rest of the pasta on the counter and all of the bugs were squirming around.

The little bug were everywhere! The were in the little nooks of the pasta, in the box, around my counter tops...everywhere.

So I tore apart my cupboards and searched through all of my food looking for parasitic invaders. I put everything that I thought a bug would like to eat in ziplock bags or mason jars. I threw away anything that I couldn't search through (cereal, bread, etc.). Then I took out the trash and cholroxed my entire kitchen. (This does nothing good for my OCD cleaning tendancies!)

I didn't see anymore bugs, but I'm not convinced they're gone. I read some advice online and it seems like I did the right thing.

And what makes it ever worse is that I ate those noodles a week ago and didn't notice a thing.


Monday, January 05, 2009


I was on the phone today when I heard a loud crashing sound right outside of my apartment door. Then I saw a lot of smoke. When I ran out on my deck, I saw a car completely on it's side. I quickly got off of the phone and ran outside. Several people were either running to help or were just standing staring. I was so scared that I'd find a bunch of bloodied bodies in the car and that I'd single-handedly have to pull them out of the car and perform CPR.

Luckily everyone was ok. Four teenagers had hit an icy curb and flipped their car, but had all managed to crawl out of the car unhurt. I walked up to them and asked if everyone was ok. They said they were. I asked if anyone had hit their heads, which they replied "Yeah, kind of, but it's mostly my hip." Their pupils seemed ok as I stared into their eyes, and no one was acting very strangely. One girl was on the phone with the police and the rest were just laughing about what had happened.

Seeing that everyone was ok and realizing more professional help was on the way, I went back inside. I was so freaked out! What a potentially fatal accident! It is amazing that no one was seriously hurt. Just to show you all, I snapped this picture from my deck, I didn't want to be creepy, but it was kind of amazing.

Thank you Jesus for protecting all involved!

exciting gifts

This year I gave the Smiths the movie Horton Hears a Who. It was a very exciting gift. As soon as they opened it, I was serenaded for several minutes by their favorite lines of the movie! It was nice. :)

Veronica, the youngest, hasn't seen me for a while, so she clung to her mom while she cautiously stared at me. After all of the excitement died down, she decided I was ok and began chattering away!

What a lovely family!

baker's delight

Almost every present I got from my family this year had to do with baking cakes. It was delightful! I think they picked up on my little hobby!

My sister gave me a checkerboard cake pan set and a cake carrier. I guess she heard of the several times I made cakes and carried them on my old cake platter in one hand while driving with the other. Not so safe.

I decided to break out the new cake pan for the sweater party and made a lovely little ugly sweater cake! Anna said it tasted like eating Christmas. :)

ugly christmas

Last year Kim, Chelle, and I hosted our first annual "Ugly Christmas Sweater Party" which was so awesome! This year it was held at Pometto Estates and was full of even more Christmas cheer! We actually had prizes this year. The winners are...

Ugliest Ugliest

Ugliest Couple

Ugliest Accessory (the shoes)

Most Likely to be Worn in Public (Anna)

Ugliest Actually Worn by Your Parents (Andrew)

I was going to vote for Kim Taylor before I saw Jon's little number, but I figured that the person who everyone at the party had to take their picture with should be the winner of the whole thing!

For next year we decided to name our party "Ugly Christmas." And (I think) Ruth Ann came up with the idea that our next party should be called "Ugly Wedding." There's a lot of good stuff out there! Any more ugly ideas?

God bless the ugliness!