Friday, June 29, 2012

Just another day

I. Love. The. Fourth. Of. July.
It's my favorite holiday.
Not a secret fact about me: I say this about every holiday.
But I do love, love, love the fourth.
Lake, friends, summer, fireworks, cookouts, AMERICA- Seriously? What's not to love?!
I love this country. A whole lot.
But I'll save the rest of my American pride for after our actual Independence Day.
I couldn't contain this pride yesterday though.
I'd been seeing a project on Pinterest and finally decided I should probably take the leap and try it.
So I channeled all of my inner craftiness (as well as some problem solving skills) and 100% made up my own way of making these. And I have to say, as a typical East Tennessee redneck, I am pretty pleased with how they turned out:


The ultimate "salute your shorts"... calling all '90s kids here! A little Camp Anawana love.

Anyway, I am SO pumped to wear them on Wednesday. Go Amurica.

 Between now and then, though, I HAD to escape this heat.

I do get super pumped when I see on the news that we broke record temperature (I'm not sure who "we" is...). I count myself as being part of the record. Just making my way into history books.

So to get away from this unbelievably hot weather, I'm going on a little road trip.
Next stop: Niagara Falls.
New York.
In the car.
I've never been to Canada, eh.
Can't wait to cross the border to USA's hat and play hockey and put maple syrup on everything and be a lumberjack and figure out just what Canada is all "aboot" (I learned that on the Bachelorette- can I get a round of applause for making two tv show references that people would rather forget about ever watching in ONE post?!)
Disclaimer: I hope no Canadians read this blog. I'm sorry, I was just trying to fit as many stereotypes as possible into one sentence. You can make fun of me for over using "y'all", craving sweat tea, and leaving the "g" of the end of words. Oh, and for turning a pair of jean shorts into an American flag. Let's call it even.
So New York and Canada. That's pretty far.
But comparing the other option my dad seriously considered...


13 hours less?
I'm good with it.

So off to see a giant waterfall I go. I'm still debating between walking across the falls on a wire or going over them in a barrel. It might just be an on the spot decision.

Happy weekend!
Over and out.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

More Dreamin'

"Don't be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling."
This quote is from Inception. Which I saw once. And did NOT follow. Typical. Since then I've tried to watch it again but have always ended up asleep. Or deciding to leave and go get ice cream. Just prioritizing my life. 
Anyway, I l-o-v-e this quote.

Y'all. I'm a self-diagnosed dreamer.
It's a fact.
Some may say I'm out of touch with reality.
I say it's fine.
I guess I'll blame it on my parents for making me honestly believe I can accomplish anything.
Thanks mom and dad.
Because of you, when I jump, I expect to fly.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012


Just a couple of reasons reminders as to why Tennessee is da shiz...

Good gosh, I love my homeland!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


I was doing homework on the floor at my parent's house the other day and my youngest brother was jumping up and down, sitting on top of me, and asking me millions of pointless questions. My dad (who I honestly believes knows what I'm thinking before I do) stopped him before I totally lost my cool. He said, "Sam, what's the hardest word you know how to spell?" To which Sam answered, "Pterodactyl." (Confession: I had to Google how to spell this word. Sam might be officially smarter than me.) And my dad said, "Everything Chelcie does for grad school is like having to write the word 'pterodactyl' over and over."
I laughed for a long time.
But you know what, that's actually a pretty accurate description.
Grad school is killing me.
I applaud all y'all going through much more difficult programs!
I have been wishing this summer away and it is not good at all.

Wherever you are, be all there!  
Thank you, Jim Elliot, for reminding me to be present in the moment.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Two Months Late...

Sometimes when I want to blog procrastinate from doing grad school homework and I don't know what to blog about, I go back and look through my old posts.
Well I found this one in a draft I never published from two months ago. Whoops.
I love this post. 
I like to go back and read it and remind myself to chase God's dreams rather than my own.
This quote was all that was saved in the draft but it fits with that post so well, I can't believe I forgot to publish it.
So here it is:
After Bubba Watson won the Masters (side note: I don't even like golf or pay any attention to it at all, but who can help absolutely loving Bubba?! He rocks.) this is what he said:

"I dreamed about it—my dreams just never went this far." 
-Bubba Watson

How often do I dream about things, but never let my dreams go as far as God plans to take them? Answer: a whole lot

So anyway, this is a random post that was supposed to be published two months ago. But I'm kinda glad I found it today. It is such an awesome reminder. And it means I got to take a break from detailed planning of a day in Kindergarten :)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Please pray!

I believe that prayer is powerful.
I believe that God can do anything.
My biggest struggle is not whether or not He can do something, it's whether or not He will.
But I know that no matter what God brings Himself glory.
And we have a huge role in helping others see that glory.
Well I know a family who is always so lovingly and so consistently glorifying God.
And they are in desperate need of prayer.
This family is the Cochrans.
Words cannot even begin to express what a blessing this family has been to us as Halls YoungLife leader.
Every Thursday night for the past three years they've opened up their home and allowed it to be overflowing with high schoolers. 
They've allowed us to come into their basement and do what we do.
All so Halls high schoolers can hear about Jesus.
We've rearranged the furniture in their basement, got shaving cream all over their walls and carpet, got tape stuck on the tops of cabinets, made their neighbors call in anger, got chocolate syrup on the floor, destroyed the grass in their yard, and totally, loudly, 100% interrupted their Thursday nights for three years.
And never once have they complained or been anything but over the top welcoming and appreciative of us.
Not only all this, but they have gathered families in their small group to provide dinner for us on Thursdays. For a bunch of hungry, poor college students, homemade meals speaks volumes of love.
Words cannot describe their generosity.
I wish I could do this family justice.
The thankfulness and love we have for them just cannot be expressed. 
And as I said, they need prayer.
The youngest boy, Saxton, has cancer.
He's 12. The same age as my sister, Addie.
It's metastatic carcinoma.
I don't know a lot about cancer, but from what I've read, the cancer started somewhere and spread lots of other places. 
The details are on his CaringBridge.
The Cochrans sacrifice so much because of their love for Christ.
My heart is breaking for all of them.
But they love Jesus so much and are still praising Him during this time.

Saxton's CaringBridge.
His brother, Spencer's blog.
You can see this family's faith in God and love for each other through both of these.
They are amazing.
Pray for complete and miraculous healing for Saxton. And that God will receive all the glory. 

Saxton's sweet sister, Maycie. She'll be a senior this year. Love her so much.

Please pray.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

What is Friendship?

I'm reading another awesome book. I'll save the details of it for another time, but right now I love this...

love at all times
stick closer than a brother
are always there for you
encourage and affectionately affirm
offer bracing critiques
are constant and transparent
always let you in and never let you down

A lot of us have heard that C.S. Lewis quote about friendships being born when two people say, "You, too?"
Friendship is more discovered than it is created.
Because the best friendships are about something else.

"Friendship must be about something, even if it were only an enthusiasm for dominoes or white mice. Those who have nothing can share nothing; those who are going nowhere can have no fellow-travelers."
C.S. Lewis

I'm so thankful I have friendship with the common thread of Jesus linking us.
So thankful for these friends (and more):

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Father's Day!

First of all, saying "Father's Day" seems so proper. Doesn't anyone really call their dad "Father?" Doubt it.

So many people claim it, but it's really true when I say it... I have THE best dad in the world.
Everyone who knows my dad loves him.
He has never met a stranger. He can literally talk to anyone. I admire this trait about him SO much. Whereas most people (myself included) pick and chose favorites. We look right past people my dad sees. Whether he's talking to the owner of a company or a homeless man in downtown Knoxville, my dad gives them equal amounts of attention and care. People leave him knowing there's something different. Feeling special, unique...
Speaking of unique, there is no one quite as unique as my dad. Sometimes I honestly believe he thinks he is still 15 years old. He plays so hard and overflows with a childlike joy and contagious enthusiasm.
My dad is so wise and full of good advice (and always willing to offer it :) ). He's told me so many thing that I keep in mind everyday. Like "You don't get 100% of the things you don't ask for" and "Life is too short to work a job you don't absolutely love."
I know my dad loves me. I have never, ever, ever doubted it. I've never felt like I've had to prove myself to him. I've always felt he is proud of me and the person I am becoming. This is such a blessing that I hope to never take for granted. He is probably the only person in the world who I 100% believe would put aside his own desires, needs, and wants for me anytime. This doesn't come from me being spoiled because my siblings and I are not the only ones he would do this for. I truly believe he would lay aside his needs for anyone. See, this comes from a love of Christ rather than a desire to please people or please himself. He loves Jesus and people more than anyone else I know. What a role model.
He is hilarious, energetic, caring, athletic, and taught me almost everything I know (at least all the important stuff!!).
I have an earthly father that points me to my heavenly Father. For this I am forever thankful. 
He's the first guy I ever loved, therefore my number one man. And always will be.
I'm a Daddy's girl through and through. No denying that.
I'll go ahead and blame him for me being out of school and still being single. No one can live up.
Happy father's day, Daddy. Love you.
So thankful for this man. (And missing my other main man, Drew).

Wednesday, June 13, 2012


What. A. Day. Summer.
Tonight I am choosing to be thankful.
I'm thankful that I had to go to school today. Because it means I did well enough in undergrad to get accepted into grad school. (Someone thinks I'm good elementary school teacher material:))
I'm thankful that I was in class from 12:10-8:50. Because it means I get to further my education even more.
I'm thankful that I have tons of homework. Because it means I'm learning a lot and getting lots of practice at being a great teacher.
I'm thankful that five of my friends are in Europe(!!!). Because it means they are having the best times of their lives and will come back with lots of awesome stories to tell.
I'm thankful that some of my other best friends are gone too. Because it means relationships aren't based only on proximity and convenience. And they'll coming back with lots of stories too. (Insert thankfulness for iPhones and hand written letters here too:))
I'm thankful for my friends that are here aka three of my sweet roomies. Because it means we get to find fun things to do to make up for being left behind in Knoxville.
I'm thankful that I'm setting my alarm tomorrow even though I don't have school. Because it means I get to spend some quality time with one of my precious teammates.
I'm thankful for my bed. Because I refuse to believe there is a more inviting and welcoming bed in the world.
I'm thankful for this life. Because widening my perspective, even slightly, makes me realize how blessed I am.
I'm thankful for my God. Because all the time I am so undeservingly loved.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Kisses from Katie

I am reading/re-reading Kisses from Katie by Katie Davis.
So. Many. Things. To. Say. First of all, I've started this book before, but each time I've been on the beach or at the pool, and I find myself desperately wish I had my journal so I could scribble down basically every other sentence of the book.

A mini introduction to Katie.
She's from Nashville.
She's 23.
She was class president, homecoming queen, and had it all.
But she left her "perfect" life.
After her senior year of high school she moved to Uganda.
Now she's adopted 13 daughters.
She's established a ministry.
She feeds and cares for hundreds of people.
She shares Jesus with them.
She is changing the world. One person at a time.

I wish I could say Katie and I have a lot in common... But she's out there making an impact, and I'm still just writing about it.

Unlike Katie, I followed the norm and came to college. And now I'm in grad school. I love teaching. I am SO happy I get to be an elementary school teacher. It is, without a doubt, what I know I'm supposed to be doing.
But right now it stinks. To be reading about Katie actually doing things that matter while I sit here making another lesson plan for imaginary students.
BUT most of the sentences from Katie's book that I've written in my journal can be applied to my life right here, right now.

Here are some of my favorites.

"People who want to make a difference in the world usually do, in one way or another... They hold unshakeable convictions that individuals are extremely important, that every life matters."
I'm here with individuals. A lot of whom don't know Jesus. I come in contact with tons of people every single day whose stories I don't know. And yet, most of the time I fail to treat them as if their lives truly matter. It's not that I think that they don't matter, it's that I am far too consumed with my own life to really even think about theirs. Ouch. How's that for public honesty?
"So the last will be first, and the first will be last." Matthew 20:16

"... I will not change the world. Jesus will do that. I can, however, change the world for one person."
There are people here, in Knoxville, that I know I have the power to change their world.  
“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’" Matthew 25:40

That's all for now. 
Happy Sunday:)

Thursday, June 7, 2012