Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Training Days

Disclaimer: I think this post is going to end up being incredible cheesy. Be warned!

Training for this marathon is probably the hardest thing I've ever done. It's crazy how much running long distances exhausts you. Physically, I totally get it. But mentally and emotionally has been surprising. I wish I could express it well, but I just don't think I can. I'm so thankful I have three friends to train with. We can sit around after our runs and go 'round and 'round in circles attempting to describe how we feel. The best part is, we understand each other without really using lots of words.
Anyway, as I was saying, it is not easy. But between the four of us we have the absolute best friends anyone could ask for. Saturday, we had multiple people bring water, Gatorade, and granola bars to us. Or hide them in specific spots. They took time in the middle of their days to do this for us. Once again, words cannot even express how thankful it makes me that we have people who care about us enough to do that. While we were running I had tears in my eyes multiple times from gratefulness. It is such a wonderful feeling to feel so incredibly loved.
These friends are showing us Jesus just by being good friends. Their willingness to serve and love us is something that I hope to imitate whenever I can.

I read some tips to be "Mentally Tough" (it's hard! I need all the advice I can get!)
But these are my favorite! And they can be applied to a lot of life!
When you fear, trust. Let your faith be greater than your doubt.
When you are thinking about the past or worrying about the future, instead focus your energy on the present moment. The now is where your power is the greatest.
When your own self-doubt crowds your mind, weed it and replace it with positive thoughts and positive self-talk.
When you feel distracted, focus on your breathing, observe your surroundings, clear your mind, and get into The Zone. The Zone is not a random event. It can be created.
When you feel all is impossible, know that with God all things are possible.
When you feel alone, think of all the people who have helped you along the way and who love and support you now.
When you are tired and drained, remember to never, never, never give up. Finish Strong in everything you do.
When you feel like you can’t do it, know that you can do all things through Him who gives you strength.
When you’re in a high-pressure situation and the game is on the line, and everyone is watching you, remember to smile, have fun, and enjoy it. Life is short; you only live once. You have nothing to lose. Seize the moment.

So thank you SO much to all my friends out there who are supporting us while we do this. We especially want to keep on thanking God. Because without Him we all know there is NO way I'd be able to do this at all.

Monday, February 27, 2012

February 27th... Really?

True life: I laid out today.
Someone tell me The South isn't the absolute best place to live.
I dare ya.
Winter never came.
And I don't hate it.
Not one bit.
Tomorrow is supposed to be just as beautiful.
Three cheers for another day of:
laying out on back porches
perfect runs
time with friends
and sweet reminders that life really is beautiful

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Happy Lent

Today starts Lent, Bloggies.
40 days until Easter.
Until we celebrate that Jesus didn't stay dead!!

I didn't grow up celebrating Lent, but I have come to enjoy these 40 days as intentional time of focusing on the Lord.
I've never been able to jump on the "give up some kind of food or drink for Jesus" bandwagon. Maybe it's because I didn't do it as a child, but for me, giving up desserts or caffeine for Lent becomes more about me  rather than about Him. (Please know I am speaking 100% for myself only here- if that's what you choose to give up, I support you all the way). So I struggled to think of what I should "give up" that would really draw me closer to Jesus.
Last night I found it.
First of all, I'm giving up my "snooze" button. Y'all, I love to snooze. So much so I set my alarm early, just so I can tap dat. I am a morning person, but those precious 10-60 minutes I get from pushing snooze do miraculous things. However, by snoozing I loose out on time I could be spending with Jesus first thing in the morning. So, goodbye sweet snooze button. See ya in 40 days.
The next thing(s) I'm giving up are: complaining, criticizing, and blaming. I doubt anyone would describe me as a negative person (for that I am thankful), but there is not denying the fact that I do complain, criticize, and blame more than my fair share.
I'm opinionated and share my opinion often whether or not it is asked for. Oops.
Complaining comes far, far too easily for me. I'm a YoungLife leader (if you're one too, enough said there), I spend all day everyday learning about or being around elementary schoolers, I'm training for a marathon, and I have extreme roadrage... Complaints roll off my tongue so easily. Stopping now. I've already been aware, caught myself a couple times, and uttered silent prayers. I'm going to need lots of patience, reminding, and grace with this one.
And I hate being blamed for anything. Whether or not it was my fault. I dish out forgiveness quickly, so I am often slow to ask for it or accept blame. One of my favorite books is The Traveler's Gift by Andy Andrews (typing this out makes me realize I really need to read it again). In it, Truman says, "The buck stops here." That's my motto for these next 40 days. Time to suck it up and take the blame.
The last part of Lent is already my favorite. My roommates and I made lists last night of 40 people we are thankful for. Over the next 40 days, we are taking one day per person to prayer continually for that person and write them a letter. It's only been one day and it's been such a blessing already. I am so, so looking forward to having the opportunity to let 40 of the people who have influenced my life know how incredibly thankful I am for them. 
And that's that.
Happy Humpday!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Power in weakness

I have discovered that my previous post was incredibly wrong. Turns out I am highly allergic to Valentine's Day. I felt so sick on Tuesday. I guess all the love in the air quite literally made me nauseous. Tragic. But I spent most of the day in my bed feeling horrible. But Tim Riggins kept me company, so I am in no way complaining.
Sparing the details and moving on...

Abby Troutman Fennell (I don't know when I'll get used to that) and I are RUNNING A MARATHON! Whoa baby, I can't believe it. The Knoxville marathon. April 1st. We're doing it.
We both have run the half so we are ready to step up our game.
I am seriously so pumped.
But at the same time, this marathon is something we both are so positive we would never be able to complete without God. 26.2 miles? Abby and me?! Not. A. Chance.
But we can do all things through Christ.
This verse has come up twice since we paid last night...

2 Corinthians 12:9

9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

At first I was confused. I don't want to go into a marathon being weak. But then I think... of course I do! Christ's power in me! Whatta a treasure!

That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
2 Corinthians 12:10

So I will boast in my weakness and my inability to do anything on my own.

It will not be easy. By any means. It will be hard. And I will be weak. It will be a challenge. The biggest challenge I've ever faced probably.

Here's to running a marathon, by the strength and to the glory of the Lord alone.

Let's go!

Here I am after the half. Let's see if I can double this wimpy thing.
And my brother a couple years earlier after he ran a marathon. He's a beast. And my inspiration.
And my running partner. So encouraging. So thankful for her.

If you're looking for some entertainment incredibly bored without anything better to do on April 1st (no foolin') from 7:30a.m. until about noon, feel free to come cheer us on. We'd love the support!

Monday, February 13, 2012

It's That Time of Year Again...

Yet another year has past. The "in case you forgot you are single" holiday is upon us.
That's right folks, Valentine's Day.
Actually, truth be told I am pretty neutral about this holiday. I love love (a phrase I thought I coined, clearly I did not), so naturally I would love a holiday all about love, right?
Oh, but you cannot forget the fact, dear reader, that I have spent the last 22 Valentine Days s-i-n-g-l-e (once again, if blogs aren't for confessing sad, lonely facts about your life, what are they really good for?). So... I should hate it... right?
But I don't. Despite my attitude in that "forever single" sentence, I don't spend the day wallowing in my misery. I would 100% be lying if I said being single doesn't sometimes stink, but, for the most part, tomorrow is just another day.
Hence, my inability to truly define how I feel about the holiday.
So I sit here. In neutral.
Now before you sign me up for eHarmony or Christian mingle, let me say I have had some pretty stinkin' awesome Valentine Days.
Roses on my back porch. And in my mailbox. Balloons and cookies and milk. Notes. Candy. Big shout out to my cheesy but oh-so-thoughtful guy friends in high school. Really, what loving boys.

But now, my senior year in college I am evaluating my thoughts on this holiday which is quickly approaching. And actually my thoughts are similar to what I wrote in this post.
I am being pursued by the all-loving God!
That is what marriage is supposed to represent for us anyway, this perfect love relationship.
And yet I have it.
God loves me. And wants me.
What an awesome fact to just take in.
It is the only love that fully satisfies. Ever.

I read this today... "When I focus on the earthly relationship I don't have, I am being completely ungrateful for the love I already have"

So, flowers, cards, chocolate, they are all so great! But what a gift we have been given. One that far exceeds anything we will ever find here.
Single or married. I hope we don't forget the ultimate pursuer of our hearts.
Do not forsake your first love.
(Revelations 2:4)

Happy Valentine's Day, Bloggies!! Go spread the love.

Sunday, February 12, 2012


This weekend I celebrated two of my all time favorite peoples' birthdays.


He's handsome.
He's the one I share all my growing up memories with.
He's smart.
He's the best bigger younger brother a girl could have.
He's funny.
Hes athletic.
Good gosh, I can't believe it.
Three cheers (of water, of course) to you, Babe Dew!
Love you to the moon.



She's so hilarious.
She's adventurous.
She's a concert going pro.
She's one of my very best friends.
She's a total babe.
She's a blogger(!!!)
And she is SINGLE, fellas!
Happy two-two, Reba!

I dare you to find someone who had better reasons to celebrate this weekend.
I am truly so blessed.

Now here's to an awesome week. Monday- Leh go!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

My favorite winter of all time

This is my favorite winter of all time.
I love that it has been so very "mild."
I love that I've run in shorts and tshirts everyday.
I love that February is acting more like mid-March.
I love that it hasn't snowed. (Although I do miss snowboarding)
I love that I can get away with driving with my windows down and heat seater (as I like to call it) on.
I love this season!!

I don't love that the daggum groundhog thing saw his shadow and predicted six more weeks on winter. I'm gonna go ahead and assume he's wrong. Here I am making my own predictions, peeps.
I also don't like that people are comparing this winter to the infamous winter of '93. Such a fun winter (that I remember oh so clearly as a 3 year old), but I honestly don't think I could survive it.

So anyway, here's to livin' up this b-e-a-utiful weather, pretending like it's spring, and being tempted to rethink winter as my least favorite season.

Happy Tuesday, Bloggies!

Sunday, February 5, 2012


I am confident that everyone who reads my blog has seen this already. BUT just in case you haven't, watch.

Stuff YoungLife leaders say.

I haven't figured out for sure if this is only funny to YL leaders, or to all people. And if it's more specifically funny to only Knoxville YoungLife leaders. If you don't fall into these two categories, watch it just in case. And let me know what you think. And if you fall into either or both, enjoy with your whole heart!

I've watched it everyday since leadership on Friday and lol-ed everytime.
I would love for this video to go viral so I can say, "Hey, the latest YouTube sensation?! Yeah, they're my friends."

So, this is funny because it's true...

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Happy February!

So I know this actually came out like 4 months ago, but I am still watching it. I deserve to be judged for it.
The two boys at the end?
I want them to be mine.

And ya know, what's better than a reason to laugh (or at least smile) on this yucky day? Nothin.

Thanks for being 100% stereotypical, February.

You sneeeaaaaky Mom!!

Happy rainy February first, Homes!