Thursday, January 28, 2010

Blog-Linkity Goodness 1.28.10

A few web gems today...

1. God sent this message to me today via Donald Miller and his blog. I've been struggling for about a year now about fulfillment in Jesus Christ and how I just can't get enough to be happy. Click away and find out what I did.

2. A neat little ESPN story about Samford's head basketball coach and his "new lease on life" after suffering a seizure during a game on Saturday. That Andy Katz. He's a good 'un.

3. I think Annie Parsons and I are on the same page about this one. Especially about the parallels.

Good day to you.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Freedom Of Speech! As long as I agree...

One thing that irritates me to no end is when people cry "Freedom of Speech" when others oppose the opinions and beliefs that they hold. But when someone else's opinions clashes with what they believe, they want to cause an uproar and rally to make the opposing party cease and desist.

A recent example of this is Focus On The Family's "Celebrate Life" Super Bowl commercial that will feature Tim Tebow and his mother.

For those who don't know the story, the long and short of it is that while on a mission in the Philippines while pregnant with Tim, Tebow's mother got sick and it was suggested that she have an abortion.

His mother refused and a few months later gave birth to the person we know today as Tim Tebow, soon-to-be college football legend and my future husband (okay, maybe the latter part of the phrase isn't entirely true).

Opposing opinions are that the 30-second add "throws women under the bus" or implies that every child not aborted will grow up to be a legendary football player.

I beg to differ.

We know that some people just don't grow up to be fantastic, award-winning sports figures or movie stars or music legends. There are some people who have made bad decisions and gone down the wrong path or just basically are messed up mentally and emotionally and do things that we don't understand.

However, it is not our purpose or position to say if a child lives or dies. We cannot know at conception whether that child will turn out either way. Of course, there are circumstances in which a mother may have to choose between her life and her child's life. Mrs. Tebow chose to trust in The One who created her and who created her son to work out what his purpose was for both lives involved.

No one (besides God) could've known that that little baby would grow up to be Tim Tebow and have the effect on the world that he has had so far in his 22 or 23 years of life. Mrs. Tebow made a decision according to her beliefs. And you can't fault her for that anymore than you can fault her for wanting share her story.

Bare with me for a second. It's soapbox time.

I am a Christian. And I believe that everything that happens in our life is completely planned out by God. I also believe in the Ten Commandments. Do not make anything a priority in your life over God. Obey your parents. Don't lie. Don't steal. DO NOT KILL.

When you have an abortion, you are destroying what God has created. Therefore you are trumping God. And he doesn't stand for that. What right do we have to destroy what God has created? God's most prized creation is the human being. We are even more important to him than the angels. So I hope those who believe in abortion can see where we anti-abortion people are coming from.

I've never had to go through that circumstance nor do I ever wish that upon my worst enemy. I can't imagine what goes through a woman's mind when she is considering the termination of her pregnancy nor do I want to belittle that decision at all. I can imagine that it is not an easy decision. And I don't believe anyone is trying to make such a decision seem small and fleeting.

However, I want to give a viewpoint that I hope makes sense to pro-life and pro-choice advocates alike. The pregnancy rate outside of commitment (marriage) is astronomical. And there are definitely women who become pregnant who do not want to become mothers because they are not ready financially or emotionally. However, there are numbers of couples, just as astronomical, who cannot bear children at all. And who would rather give a child the life its birth mother cannot give it than see that child's life taken away from it before it even has a chance to life that life.

When a woman aborts, no matter how hard the decision may be, she is choosing horrible as this may sound (it gives me chills to write this)... play God. And she is also choosing... (forgive me)..."the easy way out".


Okay, now stepping down from my soapbox.

The main point that I think Focus On The Family is trying to make is not that abortion is wrong and that every woman who terminates her pregnancy is going to hell. Not at all. I believe they are telling their side of the story. They are telling a story of hope and purpose in which they feature a mom and her son who just happens to be making an impact on the world around him.

I don't think they are condemning anyone. I think they are shedding light on a not-so-often thought about result to choosing life. A result that gives a child the opportunity to live and affect those around him in a positive way.

They are allowing women who find themselves in this position, and may be alone in their circumstances, to consider ALL the options. Either way, with any option a woman chooses, she will have to life with that choice for the rest of her life.

So, I say, stop crying mistreatment and chauvinism and let everyone have their voice. A lot of people have died for that voice.

Let it be heard.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

They Say It's Your Birthday...

...Well, Happy Birthday to ya!

Today is my wonderful Daddy's birthday. If I'm as good at second grade math as I think, that makes
I know that most of you reading this would argue that you dad is also the coolest dad in the world, but I really have to say it. My dad is the coolest dad. in. the. world!

I owe everything I am to my dad (and mom). He's taught me to much and fixes everything from broken radiator hoses to broken hearts. He's also pretty darn crafty as well. When I was Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz my senior year, he made my ruby red slippers. And. They. Were. Awesome.

He's really good at scaring the poo out of the boys I've dated but also at embracing them as a part of the family (okay, maybe not ALL of them) and being that one person who is always there for them to talk to.

My most favorite memories when I was a kid were riding on his back/shoulders and riding in the trailor being the riding lawnmower/tractor. Although I'm too grown for those things now, I still feel like figuratively, my dad still carries me on his back when I'm to tired to walk, puts me on his shoulders when I can't see the main event, and lets me ride in the trailor when I'm afraid to walk through the tall grass.

As an adult (which is still a weird word to me because have you seen me play with my nephew?), my favorite thing is our theological, deep, thought-provoking conversations. Although sometimes I can get frustrated with the way he challenges what I say, I always come away grateful that he does it because if I'm not challenged, I won't know what I really believe.

My dad's been through a lot in his life, a whole lot more than someone like him should have to go through. But one thing that has been a constant has been his faith in God and God's faithfulness to him. My dad has an opportunity everyday to be a light for Jesus Christ in a world blanketed with the darkness of anger, resentment, abuse, addition and misunderstanding. And he takes that opportunity day after day. That can sometimes lead to an overwhelming feeling of weariness. When you're pouring yourself into saving others, you start to feel yourself drowning. Then you become the one that needs saving.

I think there are times when he might forget how much he is loved in this world (and out of this world), but I think in the past two years he has realized it's more than anyone can fathom. And the ringleader of that love is his Heavenly Father.

My dad has a saying: "Remember who you are...and Whose you are." He has been the greatest example of that saying to me.

There are so many things that my dad has done that I take pride in -- namely, playing football for Mississippi State. But my dad has done greater things that have had a bigger impact than just tackling a few people and putting a number of quarterbacks on their back.

My dad became a Christian in high school and since then, he has been on a mission to make an impact for Christ in every aspect of his life. He was a major player in Campus Crusade for Christ at MSU and is surrounded by many close friends who have dedicated their lives to impacting the world for God's glory.

He's taught me to believe in the power of prayer because it really does work. And to look for the small things. The details. Because God has a purpose even in the small things.

I can't think of a great way to close out this post. It's just not coming to me. But I will say that there's one thing I'm sure of -- 26 years ago, God gave me a daddy who would be the earthly image of him. Now, I don't know how many dudes auditioned for the part of my dad but God sure hit the nail on the head with this pick.

Happy Birthday Daddy!

The Marshmellow Test

This is the exact reaction I would have if someone did this to me with cookie cake.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Sometimes He Just Wants You To Say Yes

(I apologize that recently fun and usually sarcastic blog about my life has turned into a place where basically I preach. Not intended. It's just that God is working in my heart right now and he's given me things lately that I just can't NOT share with the world.)

I've been reading this precious girl's blog for a while and I'm sure I've shared about her before. I'm amazed everyday by her reckless abandon to obey God and be a part of his plan to accomplish his will in all nations. God, make me this passionate to see your glory and reknown across the world.

Today's post spoke to my heart and I just wanted to share it with whoever is out there reading. It paralleled what I've been studying in my daily reading of God's word. I recently read the story of Abraham and Isaac, when God asked Abraham to kill Isaac as a sacrifice to him (Genesis 22:1-19). If you don't know this story, please go read it.

We all know how it ends. God shows again his great plan for redemption when he provides a ram in the thicket to serve as a substitute for Isaac. I don't think God's ultimate plan was for Abraham to kill his son. I think he was just testing Abraham's faith, seeing if he was willing to go the whole way with this obedient faith thing.

After reading Katie's post today, I think, no, I know (as does she), that God was doing the same in her heart. He just wanted to see if she was willing to say yes.

I think I'm getting to the point where God is about to ask me to say yes. I'm a little afraid, but God's given me his Word to look to so that I know the ending of the story.

Please continue to pray for Katie as she ministers to those who need it most. And pray for me as I try to be obedient and muster up the faith to just say yes.

Five Things Tag

Lydia tagged me on this survey and y'all know I love a good mindless survey. So here goes...

1) Answer five questioins with five answers.
2) Tag five other bloggers.


1. Where were you 10 years ago?
- I was 16 and a junior in high school.
- Probably getting ready to cheer at a basketball game or practicing for Colonel's Classic.
- Dating a guy that didn't really appreciate me.
- Learning how to be a journalist from Mr. Avalon.
- Probably getting in a little trouble with Drew or Austin.

2. What is on your to-do list for today?
- Pack for the trip home (check)
- Get the cable fixed (check)
- Go to work (check)
- Email Jessica Owens
- Have fun times with the nephew

3. What five snacks do you enjoy?
- Gummies bears
- Grapes
- Any kind of chips and dip but favs are Moe's chips and queso or Pepper's/Bulldog Deli's chips and rotel
- Goldfish
- Ritz crackers

4. Where are five places you have lived?
- Briarcliff Circle in Jackson, MS
- Old Spanish Trail in Jackson, MS
- Rice Hall and McKee Hall at Mississippi State
- The MSU Kappa Delta House
- Birmingham, AL

5. Name five things you would do if you were a billionaire:
- Establish a charity/ministry with several different angles
- Put away money for my children's educations.
- Finally pay my dad for my computer.
- Take the family to New York for Thanksgiving, to Hawaii just for fun, and the Grand Canyon because dad's always wanted to go.
- Finally take my trip to Australia.

And now I tag:
1. Dad
2. Casey
3. LT
4. Rossie
5. Megan J.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

I Can Transform Ya

I cannot get this performance out of my head. It was several months ago but I heard this song today while my iPod was on shuffle and it made me think of this video. Brilliant is all I have to say. If I ever have to perform a hip-hop dance routine (which could come up at any time, obviously), Tabitha and Napolean, I'm giving you a call. You're geniuses. Geniusi?

Blog-Linkity Goodness 1.20.10

That's weird that I just had to type 10 instead of 09. I mean I've done it for almost a month now but somehow it was more weird just now.

Anyway, here are some interesting bits that I've found around the internets lately.

1. My mom and I have discussed at length several times the unfairness of the SEC basketball schedule this year. (Yes, my mom and I discuss sports more than my dad and I do. Dysfunctional yet it works.) Due to the television deals the conference has made, many teams are playing Thursday-Saturday stint with little to no time to prepare. For example, in February, Mississippi State plays Ole Miss on a Thursday, Auburn on a Saturday and Kentucky on the next Tuesday. That's three games against three tough teams in six days. It does help that the games are all in Starkville but imagine if those were all road games. The Bulldogs wouldn't be given a chance going into the game against Kentucky. Anyway, all this to say, Jerry Tipton of the Herald-Leader in Kentucky wrote great article about this situation.

2. Paps is making history with his contract. Dude signed a one-year contract worth $6.25 million, the largest deal in history for a closer who was eligible for arbitration for the first time. Just one question, at 26 years of age, am I still eligible for adoption?

3. Last sports story. Promise. This was just too good not to share. Good times, Knoxville. Good times.

4. This post by Jon Acuff spoke straight to my heart and made me realize that sometimes God has a purpose for making us invisible.

5. This angers me to no end. People are dying left and right from curable injuries because plane after plane with medical supplies are not being allowed to land in Haiti. There is a hospital three hours from Port-au-Prince filled to the brim with injured people that is about to have to shut down because they don't have enough supplies to treat the people there.

It's frustrating to sit here in my comfortable chair in my sturdy office and on my comfortable couch in my warm home in from of my televisioni and watch the days go by where, in the midst of miracle after miracle of survivors being pulled from week-old rubble, the death toll escalates because people with broken legs and broken arms are dying because they aren't getting treated.

God, help these people!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

24 Observations

24 observations. Not 24 observations. That would just be crazy. While I was losing sleep last night watching Jack Bauer save the world...again...I noticed some things that I just couldn't let slip. Here they are. Just to clarify, there aren't 24. It's just 6.

1. Why was Jack wearing a man purse when he approached the house of the slain victims of the assasain? Jack, a man purse? Really?

2. I'm pretty sure cursing at the man who just shot your wife in the leg and is now holding a gun to your head is not going to help your sitch-ee-ay-shun.

3. Why hasn't Jack (or Chloe for that matter) been promoted to CTU director yet? Chloe's attitude may be hindering her promotion but she and Jack both outsmart everybody, EVERY. TIME. You'd think these people would learn by now.

4. Do. Not. Underestimate. Chloe. Period.

5. It's funny how CTU 2.0 (Thanks to BooMama for that term) people think Chloe and Jack are idiots yet it's ironic that they both basically ARE CTU.

6. Say hello to Renee Walker, folks. The female Jack Bauer. Homegirl sawed off Russian dude's hand. SAWED IT CLEAN OFF. I have to say, I underestimated Renee.

Sunday, January 17, 2010


Dear neighbors,

Contrary to popular belief per the noise coming from my apartment, I am not hosting the next edition of WWF Raw. If you happen to hear something that sounds like two 250-pound men body slamming each other on the floor, don't worry. It's probably just me watching Mississippi State basketball. And Saturday, that is why you thought there was an 5.1 magnitude earthquake happening on Shades Mountain because I was just a bit frustrated that WE COULD NOT HOLD ONTO THE BALL OR GET A REBOUND.


Suddenly way more passionate about MSU basketball than football
Dear Conan,

The past week has been one I'll never forget. I mean, I've always found you hilarious, but this week just took the cake. I've enjoyed your jabs at NBC and Jay Leno and if they kick you out and you move to FOX, you'll have at least one fan moving with you. Besides, I was a broadcasting major and, 2.5 million viewers sounds pretty darn good to me for a show that comes on while most people are going to sleep.


Someone who almost peed her pants laughing at least one a night this week
Dear NBC and JayLeno,

You both screwed up. Jay, you gave your show to Conan. You can't take it back. It's called indian giving. And on the playground, that's like the worst thing you can do. Your show at 9 p.m. wasn't successful because it wasn't funny. And you are up against shows like Real Housewives of Orange County and 18 Kids and Counting. What do you expect? That's real entertainment. NBC? I think you should consider that you are toying with people's livelihood here.


Team Conan
Dear Tony Romo,

I have to say, I was rooting for you. I was hoping you'd put Brett in his place. But, again, you just couldn't get it done. Let's hope Drew and Reggie can make it happen next week.


Bummed in Birmingham
Dear Jarvis Varnado,

You've made me fall in love with Mississippi State basketball all over again. You are my hero.


A faithful fan forever

Friday, January 15, 2010

Re: Pat Roberston

This article by Albert Moehler and this blog post by Donald Miller helped ease some confusion I had about Pat Robertson's comments on Haiti earlier this week.

I thought I'd share in case you were confused too. Or just interested.

Thursday, January 14, 2010


I've been having trouble getting to sleep lately. Having trouble turning my mind off.

Night before last I couldn't go to sleep until I could remember who had won the World Series in the last ten years. The night before that my mind wouldn't rest until I remembered who was Homecoming Queen and Prom Queen all four years of high school.

WHO. IS THAT. WEIRD?!?! I mean, c'mon!

I try to drown out the thoughts with TV but that doesn't seem to help.

I think my mind has been racing because I've been reading a lot lately. Thoughts are provoked. Values are challenged.

I read a book in two days this past weekend. TWO. DAYS. I know to some of you that may not seem like a big deal. Some of you read books in one sitting in one day. For me, that's never really been a reality. I get distracted and usually get sleepy after one chapter. Ask me how many books I actually finished on my summer reading lists in middle school and high school. I can probably count them on one (and maybe half a) hand.

I read Same Kind Of Different As Me this past weekend. And boy, if it didn't completely turn my world upside down.

And then this Haiti Earthquake thing now. I sat in bed last night watching Anderson Cooper (I don't care what you say, he is precious and I love him) report live from Haiti. And I cried. And cried.

And I know those were just more little steps in the plan that God has to completely destroy the life that I have now and for me to never find anything to be happy about ever again.

I hope you detected a large amount of sarcasm lathered over that last statement because I couldn't been more fueled and excited while also completely scared out of my wits about the transformation that God is doing in my heart right now. It's scary. And real. And fun.

I started asking my dad questions last night about the Haitian kids that he's encountered over the years that he's been in the Jackson Public School District. Not only has he had Haitian kids, he's had Somalians and Kenyans and Sudanese. And he's had to play bodyguard a few times as well. But that's enough about my dad (I could go on for days).

He told me about how the Catholic Charities get these kids from refugee camps, take them from having almost nothing and place them in a home where there are given more than they could have ever imagined. They don't know when their birthdays are so they are all basically given the same birthday. A 24-year old Sudanese kid could be given a birthday that states that he is 16, just so that he has the opportunity to get an education and play sports.

How heart breaking is it to not even know your real birthday.

I hear that and my heart breaks. I look at the TV and my heart breaks. I look around my apartment and feel guilty for what I have. I had a hamburger for lunch and it's not even settling right in my stomach because not so far in the back of my mind, I know the desperation there is almost 1400 miles away from me. And all I can do is send money.

I can't get on a plane and fly there. I can't go and lift up stones and bandage wounds and wipe tears away. I can't take a plate of food to that woman that is sitting on a pile of rubble. I can't hug that little boy tight who just watched four members of his family die and share with him the hurt that I would feel if my family had been ripped out from under me.

All I can do is just sit and ask God why it's happening.

I read last night the story of Sodom and Gomorrah. (Don't worry. I'm not going to get all Pat Roberston on you.) Abraham pleaded with God on behalf of those people. He knew their sin but he pleaded anyway. He said, "God, how can you, such a loving, compassionate God, look at a place like that and completely destroy it knowing that there might be righteous people there?" He pleaded and pleaded until God finally told him that if even there were a few righteous found, that he would spare the whole place.

Now we know that Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed but God spared Lot, because he remembered Abraham's compassion.

There's your hope.

Not matter what happens, not matter how horrible this all looks, not matter how many people die, God's got good in it.

Yes. It's very heartbreaking that most of the people who died in this catastrophe died without ever hearing the gospel. But the fact is that God doesn't allow things to happen without a purpose. And He will make Himself known no matter what. God doesn't just destroy cities and cause bad things to happen because it's fun. It's not fun. He allowed his own son to die for you and me. I'm sure that was not fun at all.

But there was a purpose. The purpose of salvation. The purpose of allowing someone perfect to come in a take all of my imperfection on himself, look the devil in the face, and say, "YOU LOSE. THIS ONE IS MINE." All for the purpose of freeing me from my imperfection so that I can be free to live a perfect life in Jesus Christ. And the hope (undoubtful knowledge) that I will one day sit with Him in the place that he has prepared for me.

"The Lord gives, and the Lord takes. May the name of the Lord be praised." Job 1:21

Please join with me, and the rest of the world, in prayer for the Haitian people. Pray also for the rescue workers and people there working around the clock to supply aid. Pray those who are literally dragging people out of the rubble and pray for those they are rescuing. This is not an easy thing for any part involved.

Also if you would like to donate to aid, check out the following ways:

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

5,000 Question Survey (Part 5)

401. Some say that high school is the best time of your life. Was that true for you?
I wouldn't say the BEST time of my life because there are different levels in different stages to that, but I definitely had fun and there are things that I miss every once in a while like Colonel Classics, plays and Friday Night Football.

402. What do you find yourself encouraging others to try?
Anything that they want to try. But usually food.

403. Which is better: Mel Brooks or Woody Allen?
Mel Brooks. I don't really get Woody Allen but Robin Hood: Men In Tights cracks me up. Every. Time.

404. When was the last time you were up all night?
Ha. Monday. Decadron shots'll do that to ya.

405. __ is life. The rest is just details. Fill in the blank.
Hold on. Let me pull out my collection of t-shirts circa 1994 that had this on it. Really? God is life. He takes care of the details.

406. Are people too complex and different to be categorized?
Not really. Things and people are categorized every day.

407. Is it good to have pride in your own race or does that separate people from each other because it makes them think of everyone else as 'outsiders'?
It's good to have pride in your own race but there's a line that can be crossed. Having pride means being proud of where you come from and what you've overcome but there's a little bit of humility that makes pride what it is.

408. What fictional story would you like to live through?
The Wizard of Oz, no doubt.

409. Are cats or dogs smarter?
Dogs rule!

410. Have you ever guessed someone's password and broken into their diary?
No. Plus I didn't know diaries had passwords.

411. What teacher, if any, has effected you the most in your life?
I have four. Coach Rob (10th grade World History), Billy Avalon (Journalism and AP Senior English), Karyn Brown (College broadcasting), David Ridpath (Sports Admin)

412. Are you more easily bored or excited?
Easily bored.

413. What's the bravest or most daring thing you have ever done?
Hmmm. That's hard to say. I once fell in front of the whole school as a senior and then wrote a newspaper column mocking myself.

414. "What's the point of robbery when nothing is worth taking?" (- Adam Ant)
Good point.

415. If your man or woman served you breakfast in bed as a treat what would you want?
Waffles with strawberries and whipped cream, bacon and little sausages.

416. What do you do only when you are upset?
Say foul things.

417. What's the oddest CD in your collection?
Probably Pure Disco.

418. What's the best diary name you ever saw?
I don't know.

419. What would your friends be surprised to learn about you?
Usually my friends know just about everything about me so I couldn't really answer this question.

420. Who owes you an apology?
Ha. There are a couple of people.

421. Who deserves an apology from you?
I don't know. I think I took care of the apology thing last month.

422. How would you like to treat your kids differently from the way your parents treated you?
I really wouldn't change anything. I think I'm the way I am because of how my parents raised me.

423. Which do you like best: 60's, 70's or 80's fashion?

424. What is the worst pick up line ever used on you?
I used to have a book of these. Don't have it on me though.

425. Of the following, which word best describes you: inventive, kinetic (energetic), light-hearted, mature

426. Do you own a record player? If so, do you use it?

427. How easily do you make friends?
Depends on the situation I'm in. Usually I'm pretty good at approaching people when I have to.

428. What is the difference between having character and being a character?
Having character is the way you react to a situation. Being a character is what you are in a situation.

429. Are there any animals you flat out refuse to touch?
snakes and spiders

430. Do you care about your weight?

431. Did you/will you go to the prom?
I went to three.

432. Have you ever wanted to date twins?
Uh, no.

433. What one thing would you change about high school if you could?
I don't know anything that I would change.

434. If you came with a warning label, what would it say?
Ha. Keep well fed and you should be okay.

435. Are you artistic and creative?

436. What were you (probably) doing on this date last year?
Probably the same thing I'm doing now. Getting ready for a basketball game.

437. What are you obsessed with?
The Royal family and Central Park

438. What was the last compliment you received?
I don't know. Haven't gotten one in a couple of days.

439. Do you have any brothers or sisters?
One sister. Anna.

440. Who would you like to be alone with right now?
Myself. I'm tired.

441. Do you push people away when you really want them to come closer?

442. Is a prenuptial agreement necessary or does it take the romance and trust out of marriage? Depends on who you are and how much money you have.

443. Do you lie your way out of things?
Not usually.

444. Are you better at talking or listening?

445. What will only happen to you once in this lifetime?

446. Know of any conspiracy theories you think might be credible?

447. What are the most beautiful words that have ever been spoken to you?
I'm proud of you.

448. If it were legal would you own a human slave (race unimportant)?

449. Have you ever read your own writing at a poetry reading?
No. Don't do poetry.

450. What is one simple thing that gives you the happy shivers?

Cookie cake.

451. What do you do for exercise?
Dance, elliptical, run/walk.

452. Would you rather have a strict teacher with a sense of humor or a lenient teacher that doesn't teach?
Strict with a sense of humor.

453. If you ever have a baby what might you want to name it?
I have a few names rolling around but I don't want to say for copyright issues.

454. If you won free tickets to a concert from a radio show and had to choose between Inxs, Poison, Blondie and Moby, which would you choose?

455. Are you a good cook?
I'm sure I could be if I ever did.

456. Do you prefer when things come with no assembly required, even if they are a bit more expensive?
I got for cheap. Besides, I don't mind assembly.

457. Start a sentence with the words: what if
What if I dont?

458. Are you more spontaneous and unpredictable or loyal and routine?
Usually loyal and routine.

459. What is the highest number you can count to in your head?
I'm sure as high as you can count.

460. How do you go about losing weight?
Work out. Eat better.

461. Do you have street smarts?
Of course, yo.

462. Do you have a lot of common sense?
Yeah. I kind of surprise myself sometimes.

463. What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
It's a toss-up between strawberry cheesecake and strawberry shortcake.

464. What's your favorite movie that involves dancing?
Oh wow. Probably either Step Up or Center Stage.

465. Would you ever want to become a guest on a talk show? If yes, what would the show's theme be?
Sure. I don't know. I'd like to do something big enough to get on Jimmy Fallon's show or Craig Ferguson's show. They're just funny.

466. Do you like the way you look naked?
Not really.

467. Have you ever dissected an animal?
Yep. A worn, a frog, a crawfish, a fish, and some other animals that I blocked out in zoology lab.

468. Who do you know who is brilliant?
I've always said that Scott Gibson is one brilliant kid.

469. Who do you know who is dull?
I know a few. Won't name names.

470. Do you ever think about time travel?

471. What is one interesting fact you know?
New Zealand was the first country to allow women to vote.

472. Do you talk to yourself?
Of course.

Do you talk to your pets?

473. Do you believe that humankind has a future in space (will we live there some day)?

474. Would you rather wear clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty or more delicate outfits?
Depends on what I'm doing.

475. How do you 'live life to the fullest'?
Live with the knowledge of what my future holds, why I'm here and that I don't know when it's going to end so I should do what I need to do now before I run out of time.

476. Are you sloppy or a neat freak?
I would say I'm in the middle. However, I'm a stickler for putting things back where you found them when your done with them. Thanks Mom.

477. Would you rather have a trunk full of nickels or half a trunk full of dimes?

478. What is the worst mistake you've ever made?
Holding on to a relationship that was crippling me.

479. Are you in good health?

480. Are you patriotic?

Let's play fact or crap.

Is it a fact? Or is it crap?
Crap. Oh, wait.

481. The greenhouse effect is bad for your health.
Fact and crap.

482. There are about as many molecules of air in one breath as there are hairs on your head.

483. The Miss America pageant started out as a contest in which people decorated wheel chairs and one chair was judged the prettiest.

484. To remove a tattoo a physician can place a small balloon under the skin, which is inflated so that the tattooed skin gradually stretches. Then they cut the stretched skin away.

485. Cock fighting is a sexual sport.

486. It is the warmest time of the day during the hour that the sun is the highest in the sky.

487. Certain scientists specialize in studying cow farts.

488. The brilliant colors (reds, oranges, yellows) across the sky that we get from sunsets are caused mainly by pollution.

489. In Grimm's original fairy tale, Rapunzel is pregnant.

490. Dracula was the first movie about a vampire.

491. The inventors of Corn Flakes, the Kellogg brothers, ran a school for delinquent youth.

492. "Kemo Sabe" means "soggy shrub" in Navajo.

493. Sir Thomas Crapper invented the toilet.

494. The Earl of Sandwich invented the Sandwich.

495. Some Chinese alchemists were trying to invent an immortality medicine and accidentally invented gunpowder instead.

496. The human body is made of about 99% water.

497. Bubble gum contains rubber.

498 This survey to the zero power = 0.

499. Most lipstick contains fish scales.

500. There are 86401 seconds in day.
Crap. There's 86,400.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Made To Live For Him

I just got in from seeing The Blindside. So, Mom? If you're reading this, I made it home safely. Doors locked. Heat works. I'm good.

And I'm no longer the last person on the face of the planet (besides my parents) that hasn't seen the movie. List. Check.

Despite the fact that there was more Ole Miss and red and blue in one viewing of a movie than I would ever care to see again, this movie was spectacular. I'm a sucker for a good sports movie. Throw in that feel-good aspect of it, and I'm like the melted butter on that bag o' popcorn in your lap. And I'm not gonna lie, knowing a good portion of the story, I started crying 15 minutes into the movie. My friend, who accompanied me and had already seen the movie once, looked at me and laughed.

Hello, my name is Katie and I'm emotional. Especially when it comes to 300-pound homeless football players.

I guess you could say I'm a compassionate person. I've always tried to look at people and see the good in them. See through what they are on the outside and find out who they are on the inside and where they come from. I'm not faultless, though. I, like many others, can get so wrapped up in my own life, that I forget that everyone isn't like me. They didn't grow up like me. They don't live life like me.

In the past couple of years, God has shown in several ways that my world isn't like His world. His world is very different. His has heartache and homelessness and starvation and disease. But He's also shown me that He's overcome that world and that nothing is impossible without Him.

I know some critics have said that The Blindside portrayed the Tuohys as a rich white family who took pity on a poor black kid and this just gives white people another reason to feel good about themselves and that if every white family could go pick up a poor black kid and take him and feed him and clothe him than the world would be a better place. Point taken. I only was able to see the movie through one point of view, so I can't really speak to how it looks to someone else. However, I didn't really see it that way.

(Plus, there were real life pictures of the Tuohy family and Michael Oher at the end of that film. And nothing in those life-filled, happy candids made me think this was just some charity case for this family.)

I loved the way that the movie continued to point out that the Tuohys did what they did because they knew it was the right thing to do. The school accepted Michael because they knew it was the right thing to do. Education is a right. Not a privilege. And some people just need more help than others.

The Tuohys may have benefitted a little more from this part of their lives than they originally set out but what I saw on that big screen in a dark room displayed just a little bit of the part of my heart that God has been working on in the past couple of years.

The Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir has a song on their newest album Declare Your Name, called "Made To Live For You." It opens by saying that we were made for God's glory, all of our days are made for him. He formed us, he knows us, he made us for a specific purpose. He watches every move we make. He even knows what we are going to do before we do it. But all we have to do is be still and know that He is the one in control and follow his lead.

He laid it all out of us a long, long time ago. What did he do when he was here? He preached the Word, he showed us how to love and he served the world. And he calls us to do the same. And what is that called? Living for Him.

We take a chance, we step outside our comfort zone, we do what is right. We live for Him.

We give someone a ride, we buy someone a meal, give them clothes. We live for Him.

We listen, we teach, we learn, we love. We live for Him.

I walked out of that theater tonight and challenged myself and my friend that if we are ever in the position to do something like that for someone, big or small, to never pass up the chance. Not because it could lead to a book deal or a movie contract but because it's the right thing to do.

It's what we are called do.

It's living for Him. Showing someone else the love and mercy that God has shown us. Because what happens when a cup is full? It can only overflow if the source of fulfillment doesn't stop.

And y'all. God. Does. Not. Stop. With the love and mercy. Trust me.

Now, I've said my peace. I'm going to go ring my cowbell and thank God for letting me live for him.

(P.S. Did y'all hear precious Colt McCoy preach the Gospel to the whole world last night after that awful defeat? "I always give God the glory. I never question why things happen the way they do. God is in control of my life, and I know that if nothing else, I'm standing on the rock!" Amen, brotha! If you haven't seen in, go here and see this kid's testimony at I Am Second.)

Friday, January 8, 2010

Snowpalooza '10

Let's just talk about this right now.

Yesterday, we were under a "Winter Weather Advisory". The whole metro-Birmingham area freaked out, closing school and what-not. Samford even closed after everyone in my office decided to "work from home" Thursday, as to not put ourselves in a dangerous situation trying to get to work.

One to two inches was forecasted for yesterday. You wanna know how long it snowed in my neck of the woods yesterday? Huh? 'Round about 20 minutes. And it didn't even stick. Yet, there was considerable ice on the road and seeing that I live off a "windy road at the top of a mountain", I didn't leave my house once yesterday. Visions of my sliding off one side or the other down a ravine full of trees just wasn't conjuring up warm and cozy feelings for me.

I enjoyed the day off yesterday, considering that I took the day off on Monday to go to the doctor and woke up at 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday after crawling out from under a drug-induced coma. (Let's just say, I won't ever confuse teaspoons and tablespoons again.)

So basically, I've only worked one and a half days this week (Tuesday all day and four hours on Wednesday), not counting today. But today, oh TODAY. As our Chief of Campus Safety said today, "Apparently the weather we expected yesterday decided to take off and watch the ball game last night and is making its presence known today."

It's a freakin' blizzard outside.

I woke up this morning to check the e-mail for maybe another day of cancellations but nothing showed. Then around 8 a.m., I looked outside and noticed some flurries but considering yesterday's "big showing", I didn't think much of it. As I opened my door to head out, around 9:54 a.m. this morning (because I can do that when I have to work until 9:54 p.m.), it was like I'd opened a door to an alternate universe. Snow was flying every which way, and I had a right mind to go right back inside and call it a day.

Still, I pressed on, down the mountain, creeping at a reckless 1.5 miles per hour, arriving to campus as the snow just got thicker and colder and harder.

Now, we are just waiting for Tennessee-Temple (someone please tell me why we are playing a non-NCAA school in the middle of conference season) to ring-a-ding-ding and say that it's just not safe for the trek all the way from Chattanooga.

So, my question is, what good is a "snow day", when the snow comes 24 hours later?

Answer me that, James Spann. (P.S. I love you.)

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Laugh Hard

Thanks to Dave Barnes for passing this along on Twitter. No shame with the hearty laughter in my office today.

Monday, January 4, 2010

(500) Days of Summer

This movie was incredible. Incredibly heart crushing. But incredibly brilliant. When it came out in theaters, I didn't think much about going to see it. But all of a sudden, a few weeks ago, I started hearing lots of people talking about it.

Since two rounds of plans crashed and burned for New Year's Eve, and since I couldn't seem to keep the vital organs like lungs on the inside of my body for more than 30 minutes at a time on the faithful turning of the decade, I decided to go to my favorite place, Blockbuster (where else can you buy Alfie and Dreamgirls for three bucks each? The $5 bin at Walmart has convinced me that I shouldn't pay more than $9.99 for a movie. Ever.), and rent a few movies for the weekend. I got Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (which I slept through the first time at my parents' house but was anyone else as surprised as me to find out the true identity of Snape?), Julie & Julia (a whole 'nother blog post in itself), and (500) Days of Summer.

This movie hit way too close to home for me and almost mirrored my past (and present) relationships to a level of creepiness that is way off the scale.

The story is about a guy who is a hopeless romantic. From the time that he was young, he's always known there was that "one girl" for him. He's waited all of his life to meet "the one" and one day, as he sat in the otherwise mundane weekly idea pitch meeting at his job at the greeting card company, Summer walked into his life.

Summer couldn't have been more wrong for this guy, considering her utter unbelief in the theory of love, destiny and fate. Because of circumstances beyond her control when she was younger (i.e. her parents divorcing), Summer doesn't see the point in relationships or putting a label on things. She says why go through all that pain?

Summer and Tom enter into a relationship that looked from the outside, and on Tom's side, to be love at long last. Tom considers Summer to be his girlfriend yet Summer still refuses to put a label on things which always results in the ever-resurfacing argument about how relationships are a two-way street.

Long story short (SPOILER ALERT), Tom and Summer call it quits after about a year and a half. Tom is crushed and still pines after Summer, with his hopes building upon the sporatic contact he and Summer have and then being utterly dashed upon Summer's mention of "hoping this means you are ready to be friends".

When the duo reunite at a coworker's wedding celebration, Tom thinks this could finally be the opportunity when the time is right for both. Maybe Summer has had a change of heart. She's realized that Tom's her perfect fit. And soon we find out that Summer has had a change of heart. It's just not for Tom. She meets a new beau and "just knows". Just like Tom has told her before that he "just knew" that he was supposed to spend the rest of his life with her.

As the credits rolled and I began to eject the disc and put it back in its case to send back to the movie store, I couldn't help but be reminded of my history of relationships these days.

For about five years, I was Tom. I was completely head over heels for someone that I thought at the time was "the one" but as I look back on it, was completely wrong for me. And that's why we aren't together now. Tom's wise little sister in the movie told him when he was still in the mourning period and it was getting kind of old, that he was looking back and only remembering the good times. He was missing all of the signs. When he looked back again, every fourth memory was good but the others were the ones that he was missing. The ones that made him realize that things weren't as good as he thought.

When I was young, like most Southern little girls, I imagined going to college, meeting the man of my dreams and my bridesmaids, having a ring on my finger by the spring semester of my senior year and married a year later. Well folks, I don't know if you've been paying attention but, I'm 26 and still single. Really single. Like I haven't had a relationship in about 4 years. Dates, yes. But someone to call my own, no.

On the other hand, nowadays, I find myself being more like Summer. Not as cynical but almost. I've seen way too many relationships end in the past couple of years, relationships that I saw as perfect, yet I was wrong. It doesn't bother me much when young couples break up after a few years, but when relationships that have born children and couples who have built a life together for 10, 20, even 30 years come crumbling down in a heap, it's hard for a young girl like me, a hopeless romantic to think that anything good can come from a relationship these days. What's the point when it's all going to come to a screeching halt someday when I'm not looking?

(I know, I know. God's got everything under control. Believe me. This is just babble. I know when it comes down to it, it's all in God's perfect plan what happens. He uses marriages and divorces for his glory and I'm seeing that right now.)

I also look at my life and see people in my life that are completely right for me yet I don't see them as "the one". So does that mean they are "the one", and that the timing is not right? Does that mean we are just meant to be really good friends for the rest of our lives?

I don't know. What I do know is that life is life. Things happen, relationships bloom and fail, but life goes on. It goes on in the movie, and it goes on here. And there are always other fish in the sea. I'm starting to see that now.

So...audience pariticipation time. For those of you reading and are still single, are you Tom or Summer or a mix of both? For those of you who are married, either for a little while or a long while, did you "just know" or did you decide after a while that this was someone that life just didn't feel right without?

"This is a story of boy meets girl. But you should know up front, this is not a love story."

Friday, January 1, 2010

Holla Oh-Nine, See Ya On The Flip

2009 was a good year. It was a different year. There were lots of highs and lots of lows.

I saw two best friends get married. Said goodbye to a great childhood friend forever. Went through my quarter-life crisis. Turned 26 on the 26th of July. And fell in love with Central Park. Just a few of the milestones.

But overall, I'd have to say that 2009 was a year in which my life completely changed.

My prayer for several years has been that God would give me the desires of His heart. When I started praying this, it sounded good, so I adopted it. I was going through a serious life change -- saying goodbye to the life I once knew, and finding myself searching for a new life in a new city with new friends.

I never actually thought God would give me the desires of His heart. I'm 26. Still single, way single. And although, deep down inside, I long for that husband, that house, those kids, my deep down desires have shifted.

My passion -- sports -- has changed. My passion is now finding ways that I can spread the love of Christ and live out James 1:27 the best way I know how. My desire for a career in sports has changed to a desire for a career in missions ministry or a charitable organization. My desire to spend every waking moment at an athletic event because "It's sports! I love sports!" has drastically changed to a desire for a career that actually allows me to build a life outside of work.

It's been a tough year. But it's been a great year. God's been working deep down inside of me in a way I never knew he could, and he's made me realize my potential for making a difference in his name in a different capacity that I never saw myself in.

I've never been big on resolutions because why make a list of things to accomplish when I know I'm going to fail. (Gotta love my confidence, eh?) However, there are a lot of things that I know I could do better and a few that I know I could do to make me a better person, so I'm make a list of those things. Call 'em resolutions, call 'em a bunch of things I want to do. Whatev. It's a list.

1. Read through the bible chronologically. With the help of my church, my pastor and my small group, this is something I know I want to accomplish this year. My pastor, David Platt, has challenged our faith family to do this. It's a series this year that we will read through the bible chronologically, he will teach what we are reading, and we will go deeper in that study in our small groups. Frankly, I'm excited.

2. Work out more/be healthier. I don't have a good family history of health. Both of my parents remind me of this every time they see me. There is history of cancer, diabetes, heart conditions, etc. All things I want to stay away from. Not to mention, if I can get rid of this innertube around my waist, I might feel a little better about myself too.

3. Be a better employee. God has given me the job I have for a reason. I've enjoyed it for the past three and a half years. Although my desires for the future have changed significantly, that doesn't give me the right to do a (pardon my french) half-ass job at what I do. (Not that I am doing a half-ass job, I just know that I'm not putting 100 percent into it like I know I can and I should. My attitude and my work ethic must change.

4. Take steps toward my future. I can sit and write and talk about what I want my future to look like in terms of my career all I want to, but if I don't take steps to make contacts and get my foot in the door, there's nothing anyone else can do for me.

So, here's to a new year sure to bring new experiences, new opportunities and new friends.

Hello, 2010. Nice to meet you.