Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Sacrifice: No walk in Candyland.

My sister's church practices Lent and Advent and such, and my nephew goes to the church's preschool, so his class decided as a group to give something up for Lent. (I really thought that was a cute idea.)

But don't worry, because they're giving up Candyland for Lent. And according to Kim, Caleb's reaction was, "For FORTY days and nights, Mom! NO Candyland!"

And I thought bread and junky carbs would be tough.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Lent, Part II (for me, at least)

Last year, I gave up something for Lent for the first time.

As I mentioned in '08, I know this isn't a traditional Baptist practice, but being (back) in a land of Catholicism reminded me that giving up something for Lent is alive and well, so I thought I would see what it was like.
FYI - it was hard. Very hard. The sacrifice made its point -- it reminded me of all Christ had done for me, and I was glad I had participated in the exercise.

Last year, I gave up bread. This year, I'm giving up bread, plus all junky carbs. Sigh. That's right. It was hard, but good. I mean, to forego bread and remember that Jesus gave His life for me... How can that be bad? Other than to show me how attached I am to one or two or three items, that is, versus the Bread of Life.

So I'm already whining about my carb-less next few months, which I'm sure defeats the purpose and disgusts my Catholic friends. Please say a prayer, though -- not that I'll survive, but that I'll consciously remember why I'm doing this and why it's good for a human in 2009 to experience a sacrifice -- any sacrifice -- for 40 days.

Your comments.

I have heard from several of you that Blogger is being mean when it comes to your trying to post comments.

I want your comments! It's not me; it's them!

I've changed the formerly required word verification and hope that will help. So please don't give up on me, and feel free to try again. I would love to hear your thoughts on my thoughts.



This week, I'm so thankful for:

1. Living in the South. There's no place on earth like it.

2. Modern medicine. Without it, I would still be dizzy and unhappy with life.

3. People who like me, and aren't afraid to say so. I'm not saying I understand it; I'm just saying it's flattering. :-)

4. My new Precepts Bible Study. It's very in-depth, and I've only been twice, but have enjoyed it so much so far.

5. Coffee. 'Nuff said.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Vertigo-go girl.

For the past couple of years, I've just started accepting that I'm falling apart. No joke. Since I turned 30, there's always something. Really.

My latest? Vertigo.

"What is vertigo?," one might ask.

Well, some call it the drunken disease, but as a Catholic girlfriend (who also has vertigo) has declared several times in the last few weeks, being drunk is much more fun. The room spins. Nothing helps. Talking makes it worse. (One guess on what was my hardest challenge.)
The best way to describe how it feels is to picture yourself as the little person in the middle of the very bizarre image on this post, and imagine all those circles going crazy. That's vertigo.
Vertigo usually stems from inner ear issues, but a follow-up appointment with my ENT today led me to believe that mine was all due to allergies.

So I spent the last couple of weeks dizzy, but after the meds kicked in, I was as new as a shiny penny. I feel great! So thank God for medicine. Dizziness is not a good look or feel for me!
As you know from my Five Things I'm Thankful For posts, I have amazingly supportive family and friends. One classic example of that was the text I received from my precious, brother-like cousin Greg last week:

3 questions:

Why am I just now finding out you had vertigo?

What is vertigo?

Don't only old people get that?

Thursday, February 19, 2009

My revolution.

As a rule, I hate new year's resolutions.

Last year, my friend and coworker Angela said that since she never keeps her resolutions anyway, she was going to eat more, drink more, and maybe take up smoking in 2008. (BTW, I checked with her at the end of '08 and she only accomplished two of the three. Slacker.)

It's too much for me to start listing all the things I need to work on -- it just makes me feel so incompetent. And I feel guilty for working on one area and neglecting the rest. (If you know me, the guilt thing makes perfect sense.)

So this year, I have one overall goal: to be better. I'm hoping for 2009 to be a revolution of sorts, where I approach life with an attitude of trying to be better at it, whatever the "it" of the moment might be.

Wish me luck, especially since I often feel like my friend's daughter (who is pictured above) when it comes to facing new goals. :-)

Rebekah's General Warning: I'm well aware that we're almost 3 months into 2009 as I post this. However, I started it in early January, and thought it would be a good reminder for us all to have a check-up on how we're doing with our goals. What can I say? I'm brilliant like that.

Monday, February 16, 2009

My five.

The five things I've had to be thankful for this past week are:

1. My health. Granted, it has stunk to high heavens this week, but it could be much, much worse. And I know this. And am utterly humbled to think of my blessings and how much I really do not deserve them.

2. My place in this world. I would have never said I would land in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, at 32, but boy am I glad I did. This is one cool town, and I've already made more true-to-heart, lifelong friends to make the experience infinitely invaluable.

3. Facebook. I know, spoken like a true Gen Xer, right? But really, I've had the chance to reconnect with SO many great friends from so many great places. It's wonderful, and amazing, and a delightful point of contact in a world that constantly eliminates our need for contact by "maximizing efficiency."

4. My parents. They're so sweet to care and want to help, and while I know that might be what parents are "supposed to do," many parents don't. So I appreciate mine, and that they do love and care for me in ways that some people don't receive.

5. Music. I'm just not sure what I'd do without Elvis Presley, or Jack Johnson, or Bill Gaither. There are days that nothing can help but a dose of Cyndi Lauper, Regina Spektor or Amy Grant, and who's to stop my quirky playlist? Not a soul!

Monday, February 9, 2009

This time last year...

One of my friends, PR chums, blog heroes and former Bunko mates, Shawn, occasionally posts "This time last year" blogs showing what was going on in her world 365 days prior. Since I can apparently find nothing better to do with my insomniac time at 3am, I decided to do the same:

February 7, 2008 - A Southern Baptist's Crack At Lent

After last year's crack at Lent, I decided that though it was increasingly tough to sacrifice something so wonderfully dear to my appetite, it was well worth the reminder of what Christ did for me when he died on the cross. So interestingly enough, given the later timing of this year's Easter and Mardi Gras dates, I've been thinking hard these past couple of weeks about what I'll do for this year's Lenten season.

Stay tuned for details!

There is no Y in "life."

I was recently reminded by a friend's sweet husband that questioning life is really not worth it.

While this is much easier said than done, he's right. Why would I fritter my days and nights away questioning the reasons behind occurrences, when in reality, life will go on, with or without me? I'm the one missing out on potentially valuable life experiences by wasting my time on analysis, and half the time, the analysis is not even based on full information.

Though I do think it's vital to go through the proper steps of grieving and processing when faced with life events, I also think it is possible to have too much of a good thing.

That said, I'm going to try harder to follow SD's advice and stop trying to insert a "why" into situations that are far beyond my control. I may be wrong, but I think life will be a lot more enjoyable this way. :-)

High Five

Five things I'm thankful for this week are:

1. The weather. Can anyone say "spring?" That is exactly what it's felt like here in the BR these last few days, and I could not be more grateful for the sunshine and blissfully warm temps.

2. Friends who support me through ups and downs. I have way too many of these to name, and way, WAY more than I could ever deserve. For that, I am beyond grateful and humbled.

3. My family. We have a family reunion coming up in June, and I am really excited to help prepare for it, and to start thinking about all the relatives I'll get to see in one weekend! And, along those lines....

4. My sister. Who else could I possibly call from a restaurant restroom in the midst of an outing and ask for boy advice in whispered tones?!

5. God. I know this seems broad, and no, I'm not just putting this because several celebrities probably thanked Him at tonight's Grammy awards. I really, really mean this (as I hope they did, too). As I was so gently reminded at a preciously sweet baby dedication this morning, He loves me. This I know, for the Bible tells me so.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Hulu Scoop

The rest of the world is probably already familiar with my latest addiction, but I have to thank an old college (now Fbk) friend, Garrett, for tipping me off to

Hulu is a self-described "free online video service that offers hit TV shows including Family Guy, 30 Rock, NBA and the Daily Show with Jon Stewart, etc."

A huge fan of ABC and, I am thrilled to find yet another site that provides my favorite TV episodes when I want to have time to watch them, and I can do it from my computer when I don't feel like going downstairs to watch TV. :-) I'm such a huge fan of not having to tie myself to a schedule to enjoy real people TV!

The site has very few commercials (much fewer than network sites), and you can also watch movies on it. (I'm afraid I've been too absorbed in catching up on Grey's and The Office to explore that option just yet.) So far, I have no complaints on the quality, either.

Ooooh! Yay! I just realized I can catch up on 24! Here I come, Jack....

Monday, February 2, 2009

Alive @ 5.

Five things I've been grateful for -- and that have shown me fun facets of life -- in the past week are:

1. New people, new activities, new interests, and new reasons to smile.

2. A clean townhouse! Even though it seems like cleaning can be a vicious cycle that has to be repeated as soon as you finish it, it also really renews the spirit and invigorates the senses. (I think there's crack in Lysol, but I guess that's another blog altogether....)
3. New life. I am SOOOO excited about Liz's pregnancy, and can't wait to see what this sweet little baby looks and acts like! It always warms my heart to hear of friends who are becoming parents. :-)
4. The beauty of BR's weather. Even though it's hot and HUMID here in the summer, the winters are nice and mild. I didn't think Jackson, Miss. was that cold...until I went back in the winter after getting acclimated to this balmy climate. Brrrr! Give me the BR's weather any day!
5. The Internet. I know this may seem silly, but remember the day when we didn't have it?
Weird to think about now. It's such a regular part of our lives, and makes access so easy and nearly instant. I love it!