Thursday, December 31, 2009

And the award goes to....

2009 for being the hardest year of my life!

That's a fact, folks. I lost my job, moved 3 times, Mom had cancer, and had a myriad of other things happen this year. But, I cannot complain because God is so good and faithful and usually when you're put through the fire, you come out refined. I am DONE with you, 2009 and it feels incredible! Here's to a happy, healthy NEW YEAR!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Cruisin'

After a summer of chemo, we decided my Mom needed to make up for lost time. So we did what everyone should do after going through something as brutal as cancer: travel to the Caribbean. We drove down to Florida and our first stop was to visit the O'Steens in Ormond Beach. I can't even begin to tell you how wonderful it was to continue the tradition of getting together with them at Christmas time. The next day we drove over to Tampa and set off on our adventure.

It was a bit strange to wake up on Christmas morning, put on your bathing suit and head out to the deck to a happening crowd where activities included the hairy chest contest (ew), dance parties and other non-traditional Christmas day festivities. We had a fun time, though.

Favorite cruise moments: snorkeling with beautiful fish in Cozumel, the ocean playground (complete w a trampoline where you jump into turquoise water), catamaran, margarita by the ocean, spending time with family, yummy food, and not being able to check email, phone, etc.

I didn't take many pictures as Lucy was the designated photographer, but here's one of us in Mexico.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Engaged: Michelle & Aaron

Ahhh Michelle is getting married! Malar and Aaron got engaged Christmas Eve and will be getting married on June 26th! This means Michelle is going to be a JUNE BRIDE!! I am beyond excited for you guys and can't wait til your big day! :)

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Merry Christmas


Flip flops - check
Sun hat - check
Cute dresses - check
Sunscreen - check
Good books - check
Passport - check
Wishing you the Merriest Christmas with family, friends and those you love - check!

Monday, December 21, 2009

This & That

It's been a long day, but not a bad day. Although one might think that taking the kids out to dinner for the first time and having Miss Mar throw up all over the table and restaurant would make for a bad day, but I was surprisingly calm and in those situations you just have to get through it, even if you are by yourself. Plus the best times are after they're cleaned up and bathed and you get to snuggle on the couch. Christmas time with kids is just so fun!!

I came home to 5 Christmas cards, and if you know me, you know this made my day! I finally decided that I'm not sending out my usual handwritten card (esp since my address list is around 140) this year. Hopefully I'll get to sending out a picture card when we get back. Sometimes you just can't do it all.

I'm listening to Handel's Messiah and I just can't get enough of it.

I'm jealous of those who got pounded with snow. Friday after work I was determined to leave the boring rain of Charlotte and drive home, even though my Dad told me the roads were bad. I was stubborn and tried to go anyways, but ended up making it halfway until I was sliding going 40 mph with my hazards on along with dozens of other cars on a snowy I-85, all the while passing multiple accidents. So I turned around and you know what I thought to myself: Dads know best.

I've been so encouraged lately by Matt Chandler, his sermons and his story.

Big dogs > little dogs.

Today is the shortest day of the year.

Every time I see a box of Cheerios, I think of this (very drunk) man on the subway who talked to me for 20 minutes about how Cheerios lowers your cholesterol. 20 minutes. (just saw a Cherrios commercial, sorry... stream of conciousness)

I have Gossip Girl on silent in the background because it's been months since I've seen an episode so I don't know what's going on, but I LOVE the UES shots. Wish I was watching with Katie & Kath on the couch at 1125!

Life is good. It's just one of those nights where my thoughts run all over the place (clearly), the tree is lit, the house is quiet, the to-do list is oh so long, but you just have to be still because Christmas comes only once a year and you don't want to miss taking it all in.

The last thought will be part of what my dear friend Ginny wrote in her Christmas card to me (hope you don't mind, Gin). I thought it was true and beautiful:

"What a ride you and I have been on this past year, but the Lord has been faithful and ever-present. Praise God for your mother's health! Our life is so precious here."

Friday, December 18, 2009

Because I am the biggest football fan...

Yesterday I got a personal invitation in the mail from the owner of the NY Jets football team for me and a guest to have a personal tour of their new stadium. So random and I have no idea how they got my name, or even if it's legit. However, if anyone in NYC wants to take the tour with a friend, let me know and I'll give you the info and send you the invite!



Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Manor girls

I realized that I haven't formally introduced my roomies! Caitlin and MaryKaren* both work for Crusade and we have the best time together!

Here is our cute little home. We love it! Of course, don't look too closely at the yard... it's a muddy mess with leaves still around from fall. I keep hoping the landscaping guys who drive by will feel an overwhelming sense of pity for us and one day we'll come home to a beautifully landscaped yard. A girl can dream. I mean, come spring I'll plant flowers and a garden, but I've never been too fond of the rake (ask my Dad).

I've enjoyed baking a lot this season. I also found at HT a marked-down produce section where I can get a bag of slighly bruised tomatoes for $1. I've made homemade sauce and other savory dishes. We laugh because while I don't eat much meat, MK's grandfather was a butcher and she LOVES meat!









For some reason, I felt completely safe walking around Harlem after dark or running the reservoir at midnight, but now living in Charlotte, I will do no such thing. Perhaps it's just that any cry for help wouldn't be heard or perhaps it's the crime shows MK & Cait enjoy watching and every now and then I'll tune in and see a jogger getting strangled and then I'm done. However, they enjoy running late at night together and as often as they ask me to join them, I am quite fine running in the morning and staying in a warm house at night.













This is Caitlin & I at Michael's Halloween party. The girls also hosted a tacky sweater party, but none of us ended up wearing sweaters. I mean, who looks cute in a jingle bell turtleneck?









Merry Christmas from the Manor girls!













*We NEVER call MaryKaren, MaryKaren. Heads usually turn if we do. We affectionately call her MK. Of course I call her MK my fav, MmmmmKay, Mmmk and other, various ways to put M & K together.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Public Service Announcement

If you're vacationing on the Gulf of Mexico this Christmas, mainly on a big cruise ship: look out. Tonight I lost a bet with that Ginna girl which means I will have to do a karaoke number all by myself. Awesome. The last time I did karaoke was in Chinatown, in a tiny room with yummy appies and we sang until 2am. But that was with a group of people and never once did I do a solo!! This should be interesting.

On a completely different note, App State lost tonight. I am sooo bummed! And let's face it, while I'm not that into football, if your college team makes it to the semifinals, you gotta tune in. Oh well... I probably wouldn't have caught the ball either if it was 7 degrees in the middle of a blizzard. I will leave you with this: Be true to Yosef.

Happy Birthday Michelle!!

Malar is 26 today!! Hope you have a wonderful day at the ballet and a yummy dinner tonight with your man! I'm so proud of you (sticking your hand up a cow's ass is something I could/will never do) and I so greatly admire all of your hard work and accomplishments. I can't wait to watch you become Dr. Roy in May!! :) Have fun today! Love you!!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Happy Birthday Allison!!

Al and I have been friends for 20 years. I think. Right, Al? (She's much better at remembering dates, events and pretty much everything else.) She's my oldest and dearest friend and we've had so many fun times together. I hope you have a very special day, Al. Love you!!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Christmas at Manor Road

Us girls at the Manor have put up the tree and decked the halls with wreaths, bows, cinnamon scented pine cones, poinsettias, candles and lots of Christmas cheer!






Friday, December 4, 2009

Cover it Vogue

Lately I've really enjoyed following and reading about an up & coming artist, Max Wiedemann. I love the way he incorporates color through spray paint to create a modern and fresh graffiti look. Check it out:

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Christmas in the '90's

Look at that little Lu! Our little cherry on top!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Round it up

This afternoon I was looking over W's homework and saw that he was working on rounding numbers. I then thought that if you round my age, you get 30. Ok, wow! Thankfully I'm still a few years away from the big 3-0. Now that life is a bit more settled in the South, and since the year is coming to a close, I have started to get really excited about 2010. Why make New Years resolutions/plans in January when you can start now and once the new year comes around, you're already well ahead?!

So here are just a few of my 2010 (and 2009 leftover, or rounded up) dreams:

1. Visit Meg in LA. It's been almost 4 years since I was out there for her wedding and it's about time I visit my middle school best friend in sunny Cali!

2. Go yachting. Oh how I regret that I missed those yachting classes on the Long Island Sound during Summer 2006.

3. Visit NYC, duh.

4. Run a race/marathon. While I ran cross country in high school, I'm not a Lucy Clement or anything! But I might be running a 10k this Spring with my roomie. Give me the Goo.

5. Speaking of... go to a Goo Goo Dolls concert. Ok, laugh all you want, but really, I LOVE them.

6. Volunteer more.

7. Go to ballets, concerts, art exhibits, plays & performances in Charlotte.

8. Get to know my neighbors and have a summer block party.

9. Pray more, which sounds cheesy, but I'm currently reading A Praying Life by Paul Miller and it's such a powerful book!

10. Go to see MLR graduate and become Dr. Roy!!!

11. Plant a herb garden and make it through the Silver Palate cookbook.

12. Write more snail mail letters and be better at keeping in touch with old friends.

13. Watch all of the Oscar nominated films before the Academy Awards.

14. Take a hip hop dance class.

15. Go to Maine with Tam.

16. Send more care packages to friends overseas.

17. Read all the books on my 100 Classic Book List

18. MAKE/BAKE: sushi, a cake with fondant, creme brulee, and perfect my pancakes (I cannot make a fluffy, perfectly circular pancake to save my life!!!)

19. Go home more often.

20. Learn how to change a tire.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving is fun

Especially with Lucy's new Mac computer!


Saturday, November 21, 2009

3rd Annual FG Thanksgiving Dinner

Sadly, I am not in NYC today because I am working a ton and life is busy so I couldn't make it to join my friends for the 3rd annual tgiving dinner!! Two years ago, we started the tradition at my apartment and then last year we had it at my place again and now Perryn is hosting. Hope yall have a wonderful feast- I'm sure it will be a blast! Hope to be back for New Years or some time late winter for Liz's reunion weekend!

A blast from the past....

2007
We look so young!














Sweet friends















My first turkey attempt, ever.














O boys...




















2008
Second year making the turkey. I never had a bite of it, either year actually.














The whole gang! Oh how I love them so!














Girls just wanna have fun.















I just love an apt full of people, and Perr's face :)
video

Friday, November 20, 2009

Thankful

It goes without saying, we have a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving. And that is what we are, thankful.

I was at J. Crew a few weeks ago folding clothes with a girl I work with. She mentioned that she used to live in NYC and of course I asked her a million questions about her experience, where she lived, etc. She told me she was only there for a year's internship until she had to move back South because her mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. She took care of her mom right before she passed away. I listened, empathetically, to this girl, who I didn't even know, just because our stories sound so similar. The only difference is the outcome... and I felt like I was going to be sick as I listened to the pain she expressed of losing her mother. And then I was overcome with emotion and thanksgiving that my mom is almost done with radiation, her hair is growing (and feels just like cashmere!) and we are all going to be at the dinner table this Thanksgiving, holding hands, laughing, eating and looking forward to a brand new year and new beginnings.

Things could've been different. But they're not. We're so thankful. We're not promised tomorrow so we've learned to appreciate and live fully in what we have today. Love deeply and be thankful.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Some things just go together

I started Persuasion by Jane Austen a couple months ago, but Harry Potter and Edward Cullen (swoon) quickly distracted me. I picked it back up and finished this sweet romantic novel last night. And what's better is to read it with See's candy!! Oh my word. I've had a few of their lollypops before and this stuff is good! They opened a small venue in front of J.Crew and yesterday I walked past this man who looked like a petite Colonel Sanders holding a basket of free lollypops. Usually I walk quickly past other venues selling Crocs, hair straighteners, lotions, crazy socks, the list goes on... but who can pass up chocolate?! Not me.

I'm going through a '100 classic must-read book list'. What are your favorite classics?

Friday, November 13, 2009

It's that time again!


Ben threw a ring on it

I got an email last night from Sara with above as the subject and the body of the email was just this picture.

Ahhh, Ben and Sara are engaged!!! I am so excited for you guys!

Yes, please

My roomie had friends over tonight and I made the mistake of drinking coffee with them well past 9pm, which is why I'm still wide awake reading Jane Austen and looking through beautiful websites. I found this picture and instantly wished I could click my heels together and be right there. And I would pick Mirabelle & Chris and Katie & Mark to join me! :)

Or perhaps I was also drawn to this picture because it has the sun shinning in it. For the past three days it has rained and rained. I get so tired of people complaining about the weather. Or maybe it's only ok to complain in NYC about the weather since you spend a large portion of your day walking outside. (btw, almost two months out and my heart still misses the City terribly.) But I've enjoyed the past rainy days and think the trees have looked especially grand against the gray skies. Oh how I love the fall.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Tweet

I have just recently begun to really appreciate Twitter. I am following a number of people, news/political accounts and feel like I'm getting a good dose of current events and social conversation each time I'm on. Perhaps this will just be a phase, but for now I see it as an excellent way to network, share information, promote your business or cause or just keep in touch.

So if you're not on Twitter, I think you should consider it and then we could be friends and tweet all day. :)

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Alpacs

Well not much is new to blog about and I'm slowly settling into the fact that it's November. Wow, where did the months go? I am enjoying Charlotte more and perhaps found a solid church whose initials are CCC. Good sign, right? (Dad, don't worry, I'm looking for much more than a common initial.) My favorite moments recently have been at home with the roomies making delicious meals, watching movies, laughing and eating brownie batter. It's also quite warm in Charlotte and I have a closet FULL of winter coats and snow boots waiting to be worn.

The most exciting event coming up is a visit from my favorite Allison Parker! It really is a new thing for me since we've had to plan trips far in advance and even then it's only been 3 or 4 times a year. We have lofty plans to do Christmas shopping, take a long walk in my picturesque neighborhood, talk, explore Charlotte and just "visit". Al, we are turning into our mothers, aren't we?! :)


Saturday, October 31, 2009

Weekend Update

Friday was Katharoo's birthday! Yes, my dear roomie is now living in the South and we're hopefully going to meet up sometime soon. Hope you had a great day, Kath!




It's been a wonderful weekend... working, Halloween party (meow), working some more, hanging with the girls, making homemade soup and Halloween cookies, job possibilities, football watching and cheering on NYC marathoners from the Queen City because we all know that is one of my most favorite events in the fall.













November is here which means it's a brand new month and Thanksgiving is right around the corner, yippee! I also better start seriously running since my sisters thought it would be fun to sign ALL of us up for a 5K on Tgiving morning. Awesome. I would say that running 3 miles on the biggest eating holiday of the year wouldn't be a bad thing... except that I don't especially like Thanksgiving food. Does anyone else??

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Good 'ole days

I was going through a few pictures today and found this classic of all of us from the Boat Basin, Summer 2008. Gosh I miss those fun times in NYC! And if you're in this picture, I miss you and hope to see you in 3 weeks!


Sunday, October 25, 2009

App State Reunion

Last night I had a little dinner party for some of my ASU friends in Charlotte. It was so fun to see everyone! That's what I love about being back in the South- I can reconnect with friends I haven't seen in years!










Friday, October 23, 2009

Oh baby!

Today I went over to the hospital to visit with the Anderson family. My dear friends Katie and Seth had a baby! Seth Alden Anderson was born on 10.21.09 weighing in at a whopping 9lbs 14oz. I was so excited to meet this little guy.

Congratulations, Seth & Katie and welcome to the world, Alden!




Thursday, October 22, 2009

Happy Birthday Brian!

After spending the weekend with the Parkers, I realized that I've known B-Dawg for as long as Al has (since we all met on a mission trip in Jamaica 8 years ago) and that he feels like a big brother to me. He would always call the HL girls on our birthdays which was very thoughtful.

One thing I really appreciate about Brian is how good he is to Al. I was telling Michelle yesterday how sweet it is to visit your best friend and see that she has a wonderful husband who loves her tremendously. That's the best thing you can hope for your friends.

Brian, I hope you enjoy your quiche, homemade bday cake, get to play enough video games to your hearts content and enjoy the cabin with Al this weekend (Beam's Chinese food, haha!). Happy Birthday!

photo taken by me a very long time ago

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Transition

It's been interesting as I've made the transition from NYC to Charlotte. I will most likely expound upon this more in blog posts, but tonight was fun and special because it felt like a normal NYC night. And as Warren Harding once campaigned, any kind of "return to normalcy" is really good for me right now. Here goes:

1. An awesome Bible study tonight with 7 new friends

2. Driving by the amazing Charlotte skyline all lit up

3. I saw a yellow taxicab

4. Peach Snapple

5. Hearing that Pam got the pr job we've been praying for all year!! Yay!!

6. Trader Joes


it's just the little things in life...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

The tradition continues

Fall + friends + banana pancakes + Mario Kart + wedding quilt + mimosas + Labyrinth/Steel Magnolias + Chinese w the Neel's + a drive-by + the happiest man at Publix + homemade pizzas + park + pumpkins + good talks + painting nails + Trigger + sleeping in + (500) Days of Summer soundtrack + changing leaves = wonderful Fall weekend with friends

Friday, October 16, 2009

Wow

By the time I lost my job in January, I was welcomed with open arms by a group of friends who had already lost their jobs. It was an awful feeling to walk in to work on a Monday morning after a long winter holiday and be told the terrible, yet not surprising news. A good friend took me out to lunch the next day because he had also lost his job and we talked about our jobless situation over Greek food and then watched a murder mystery movie during the middle of the day, just because we could. I'll never forget the strange feeling of watching a movie during the day while everyone else was at work.


Amongst our friends, what joy there was when someone found a job but also a continued support for those of us who were still looking. A few of us even joked about forming the "Bored Group" for those unemployed souls who were tired of coffee shops, resume workshops and endless, unfruitful job searches.

Alan posted this website on his twitter this morning and the minute I saw it, all of those initial feelings came rushing back and I felt sick looking at the statistics. Please check it out. While watching, I was focused on the Northeast area and realized that I lived to see both sides of green and red while living in NYC. Perhaps I am still overwhelmed by the map and realize that these huge red circles aren't just shapes but represent so many people who are struggling. I just hope that those without jobs have the support of family and friends. How thankful I am for community during those first few months!

Cold & Snowy

Before I begin, it is important that I set the scene. My Dad is a weather fanatic. He loves weather and always seems to know when the high/low pressure systems are coming, the dew point, and can call most weather patterns before they happen. People write on his FB wall asking what the weather will be or if it will snow.

What did this mean growing up? My Dad's passion for weather made for some fun experiences for three little girls. I remember a few times when we would go to sleep on a school night and he would then wake us up at 1am because we got 6 inches of snow and definitely weren't going to school the next day. I have this incredible memory of being young and playing with my dad in the snow... at 1am. He would also sit out on his car or the porch playing his guitar while watching a thunderstorm roll in. And, please, let's not forget his lifelong dream to go to to the beach during a Cat. 4 hurricane. He was disappointed in the relatively quiet hurricane season (for the sake of weather, not destruction, of course). And just recently have him and Jeff decided they're going to chase tornadoes. Oh my word.

I got an email from him this morning saying that all the weather guru's ("including the best forecaster Joe Bastardi from Accuweather") say it's going to be a snowier and colder winter than usual! Awesome! :)

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Run, Ginna, Run!


This past weekend my sister Ginna was in her first half marathon. Both of my younger sisters are setting the bar pretty high. We already know that Lucy is the triathalon/biking/racing/get up at 4:30am to workout champ of life. I feel like a lazy bum most of the time (even though I enjoy casually running) but love that their passions include running crazy long distances.


The sweetest thing is that Jeffiepooh talked to my parents, who had been planning to visit Gin for the race, and asked if he could come along to surprise her. I called Jeff on Friday when they were in the car to see how it was going. While Jeff feels like part of the family now, spending 6 hours in the car is a long time with your girlfriend's parents... especially when my Dad can say yaspy things. :)

I talked with Gin yesterday and she was definitely surprised and she finished the 13 miles in style. Good job, Ginna! I'm so proud of you!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Love

I've been trying to figure out how to write this post for the past few days. I'll just go for it and hope it makes sense.

Lately I have been so overwhelmed by love: by God's unconditional love for me, the love my family has shown me in the past few weeks, and especially the love from friends. It hasn't really hit me that I left NYC for good until recently. I was so busy getting 4 years of stuff from one place to the next and arranging car/house/furniture, etc. that I didn't quite grasp what I was really doing. I woke up one morning last week and got an email from a friend in NYC telling me how much she missed me and in the end she said, "love you so much". I was overwhelmed. It was one of those moments where loved triumphed over my fears. I felt the comfort of knowing that my friendships in NYC will last and that I will make new friends here in Charlotte.

Today my heart has also been filled with love. My dear friends Maggie and Neal are got married and I wasn't able to make it. Oh how special weddings are to me and how incredible it is to witness two friends who will commit the rest of their lives together. M&N, I have thought about you all day today. I went to a USC game with Alan (thanks, Alan!) and he was a trooper for listening to me every 30 minutes say (or think), "I bet Maggie is in her dress", "She's probably walking down the aisle", or "They're married!!". Congrats to you both; I wish I could've been there to celebrate with you. I'm sure yall are dancing away right now!

When I moved from NC to Long Island almost 4 years ago, I got there and was handed two babies, an almost 60 hr/week job, new town, life and everything. I quickly asked myself, in tears, when the next flight was to NC. But after getting in my groove, I found it to be home. I feel the same way now... and while I know a few people in Charlotte, it feels somewhat overwhelming to start all over.

I guess to conclude, I am humbled by love. I am reminded, especially looking back over the rollercoaster year of 2009, that I'm not promised, as much as I wish I was, that life will be easy or consistent. Even in my deep anxiety over different things, God is faithful to provide His own love to quiet my fears and also the love of family and friends to listen and care. To be shown this love is incredible and makes you want to be a better friend.

And that's what I have to say about that.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

CCC at J. Crew

While I am still in the ongoing process of finding a real job, I have secured a part-time job at the J. Crew of Charlotte's SouthPark mall. I start training next week and will hopefully enjoy helping people shop for clothes. Thankfully, life is starting to fall into place!

Happy Fall

I love fall. Love it. Love pumpkins, apple pie, crisp air, leaves changing colors*, wearing sweatshirts, and so many other things. As I've been "nesting" and getting settled in Charlotte, I've been organizing, buying furniture and hanging pictures. There is one picture, in particular, that I hung yesterday that I absolutely love.

It's of my sweet little Alec (affectionately called "Alecie"). For me, this picture is fall. Even though this picture was taken 3 years ago, it captures Alec's personality perfectly. I just had to share it with you because it's one of my favorites.

















*Haha, one of my favorite LA moments was recently when we were walking through Central Park and having a somewhat intense conversation when she abruptly stopped and gasped while looking at the lone tree whose leaves were changing colors. I love that you share the same passion for fall, LeeAnne! Miss you!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Park Ave to Myers Park

Wow, after what was one of the most stressful weeks of my life, I am home. Home is now a cute little house in Myers Park, Charlotte. Yep, I made the big move down South. While I don't have the energy to rehash the crazy events of the past week, I do have to say how thankful I am for the support of family and friends during this transition. And thanks to all my friends for the calls, emails and texts. I will hopefully be getting back with you soon! :)

It feels so great to have my stuff in one place, to have a car (I haven't had a car in 4 years!), a neighborhood and the amazing feeling of being settled in one place. I still have to find a church and job. I also have to find friends!!! While I am so sad to leave my dear NYC friends, I am excited to be in a city with a few people I know. If you live in Charlotte, I'd LOVE to hang out with you!

So that's the update on my life. There's so much more to tell, but maybe I'll get to that later this week. Along with changing my drivers license, re-routing my mail, and every other change that comes with a move, I have to change my blog title. Hmm... CCC in Charlotte? CCC in NC? Any other ideas?

Monday, September 28, 2009

Art and life

There's a lot of things in my life that are up in the air right now. It can feel quite overwhelming. It is overwhelming. I saw this photograph at the MET yesterday and was immediately fascinated by it. The picture, The Leap Into The Void, is actually a photomontage taken by Harry Shunk of the French artist Yves Klein leaping into the air. I stood there for a few minutes taking it in, looking at his face and realizing how much I feel like this man. He looks free, he looks scared, he looks bold. Arms stretched out and looking out ahead of him, he falls into the void.

Oh how this picture captures my life right now. I, too, am leaping and looking out ahead of me as I fall. Risks are being taken, decisions made and while I'm not quite certain of any of them, there is one difference between my life and this picture. I am not falling into the void. I am falling into the everlasting arms of God. Oh what comfort that is to me now, what reassurance.

I have decided to end my time in New York City. I gave myself the month of September to find a job and while I had a couple of job opportunities to come up, I quickly felt that I couldn't fully commit to them, nor did I want to. I feel like my heart is being pulled down South and I want to be closer to my family. I will be moving to Charlotte to live in a house (a house!) with two other great girls and this is such an answer to prayer. I will look for a job once I get there and already have an appointment to start volunteering with a children's hospital in Charlotte. I've also had thoughts of joining the Junior League and excitement for what is to come in a new town, with old and new friends.

While I rather quickly made this decision, and while I have had second thoughts, I feel like this is where I should be. It's the next step in my life. I'm not sure who it was, perhaps Elisabeth Elliot or even TK, who said, "Just do the next thing." Simple as it is, in my chaos of moving and uncertainty, I find myself trying not to think too much but to do the next thing that has to get done. But oh how I will miss my friends here. What community, acceptance and fun I have had in New York. Some of the best times of my life.

So, here's to what's to come. But at least I know that I am falling, ever so blindly, into the arms of God. And that's the only place I ever want to be.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Blogging and cotton candy

Well I just passed my one year anniversary of blogging. Hooray! Not that this is a huge milestone, but probably worth a blog post shout-out if you ask me.

Yesterday I had a LeeAnne day! I hit up the NJ Transit after the wedding weekend and arrived to a beautiful September day in the City. LA and I ran a few errands and then met up with Pamela in Central Park where we enjoyed, along with everyone else in Manhattan, cool weather, blue skies and a relaxing Sunday afternoon. When LA and I got back on the subway, I looked over and saw that someone had a ton of cotton candy at the end of the train!! I'm not especially fond of cotton candy but this made my day! What a happy subway ride.
















**Updated**

I just found this video of the boys, and since we were talking about cotton candy already, and since they're just plain adorable and sweet themselves, I thought I would share.

video

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Introducing: Matt & Lauren Jacobson!

What a fun wedding weekend it was celebrating the marriage of Matt & Lauren! It was the perfect day ("the 11th most beautiful day in Jersey" -the groom, MJJ himself) and we had a blast! Amongst our friends, I was the designated photographer, so I have a million pictures to put on Facebook and they will be up tomorrow, most likely. Congratulations to the happy couple and hope yall enjoy your 3 week honeymoon all around the world!






















Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Happy Birthday Ginna!!

Happy Birthday to you!!!

It is that Ginna girl's birthday today! I am just thrilled that I have been able to share in her 24 years of life, being the older, wiser sister that I am ;). Gin, I hope you had a wonderful day today. I have compiled a lot of very random pictures for your viewing. I love you!

If you've ever wanted to know what a birthday cake looks like when you have two young children running around, a trip to pack for and basically life is crazy, here's exhibit a. I made this for Gin in 2006 to trick her into thinking I was celebrating her bday with the boys and neighbors when really I surprised her by flying to Boone for a birthday/girls weekend celebration!










Life is certainly never boring with Ginna. Here she is in 2007 in NYC!












Sisters, sisters, there were never such devoted sisters









Oh my gosh. This is CLASSIC Ginna. Classic.









We are so silly.









But at least we love each other!









Ginnawin, Jeffiepoohfefferson and Petals












My favorite recent picture! What fun we have together!