Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Christmas Fun

This year's Christmas was just as action-packed as Thanksgiving was! We started off our weekend with 2 of my favorite people stopping in Richmond to stay with us for the night- Paula and Adam Richwine! That night, we celebrated Hannah's 25th birthday at Comfort (think upscale Cracker Barrel type food) and drove around looking at "posh" (as Hannah calls things) homes on Monument Avenue with cool Christmas decorations. Unfortunately, I dropped and broke my camera and have no evidence of my good friends being here. Saturday night, Adam's best friend Michael and his girlfriend Mary met us for coffee in Richmond before we headed to see the Nutcracker. Sidenote: I absolutely love the Nutcracker! It reminds me of the glory years when I used to take ballet:-) AND it definitely puts you in the Christmas spirit! On Sunday, church as always and then we headed to Tennessee for the week. The week was wonderful, getting to spend quality time with good friends and family. Unfortunately, I received a special visit from the nausea fairy on Christmas Eve and spend that night and all of Christmas Day not feeling so great (another reason why there are no pictures taken on Christmas morning with my family). The only thing that could have made Christmas better was if I had gotten a puppy:-) (hint, hint Adam) Below are some highlights of our trip!

Adam and I all dazzled up for our night out at the Nutcracker

6th annual(?) Quad Pod Christmas-- we dressed up and headed to J.Alexanders for a feast. The best present was Lindsay's little box that held a picture of her latest sonogram...she's pregnant again!

I had to put a picture of Sienna on here:-)

Emily Evans had a huge get-together at her cabin on the lake. It was great to see old friends from high school and especially great to be at the cabin. I will be so sad to see it go!

Breakfast with LeeAnna at Panera

I am so thankful that even though we live far away, I have been able to spend every Christmas in Cleveland. I can't wait until next year!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Do You See What I See?

First of all, this is one of my all-time favorite Christmas songs. If you really think about the words and put yourself in the context of the song, it kinda sends chills up your spine. I wish so badly sometimes that I could live back in biblical times to be around for the birth of Jesus (or anytime around Jesus). I suggest googling the lyrics:-)
Secondly, "Do You See What I See?" has been our theme at Cornerstone for the past few monthes. It's all about making God's dream your vision. It's really crazy to think about how the world could be such a different place if everyone made God's vison our priority and died to our selfish hearts and lives. The advent booklet that the church puts out for Christmas has daily examples of real God-given dreams that people in our church have; and it has been so inspiring to read these. They include everything from starting ministries, mission trips, raising Godly families, outreaches, businesses, adoption, etc. But I also know that you can't just pray one time and expect an overnight vision statement from God for your life (usually:-)). This journey of faith isn't a one stop shop- It's a continuous and never ending process. Adapting this from Pastor Wayne, there are 4 different types of people and how we look at our relationship from God:
1. Exploring Jesus- This person believes in God, but is not sure about Jesus. Faith is not a significant part of their life.
2. Growing in Jesus- This person believs in Jesus and is working on what it means to get to know him.
3. Close to Jesus- This person feels really close to Jesus and depends on Him for daily guidance.
4. Jesus-Centered- This person believes that God is all they need in their life. Everything they do is a reflection of Jesus.

As for Adam and I, I want us to be Jesus-Centered. I want everything that we do on this earth to be for the purpose of God. As for my vision, I see myself working with young girls and healthcare. Adam wants to continue leading the youth group according to God's plans, not his. Together, we have the vision to hopefully adopt a child one day. My dream for anyone reading this is that they would continue to strive to be Jesus-centered and ask God for His vision for their life....It will totally rearrange the way you think.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Tacky Sweater Christmas Fun

(Yeah, I made my own shirt:-) Complete with bells, glitter glue, and a real gingerbread cookie) This weekend was definitely packed full of fun. Friday night we went to a "Young Marrieds" Christmas party at our friends, the Coffins. We ate lots of great treats, met some new people, and played "The Newlywed Game" (it was hilarious!) Saturday consisted of some last minute hectic Christmas shopping before I had to work the evening shift, while Adam went to his friend's wedding in Raleigh. Sunday was church, lunch with friends, Christmas cookie-making with my friend Kate, and then to top it off-- the Common Ground Tacky Sweater Christmas Party. Common Ground is the young adults group at church and I am so thankful for this group! I don't get to go very often due to my work schedule, but I love being there. The group is very ecletic and Brandon (the college pastor) is awesome at really hearing what the Lord is saying and then sharing it in a way that challenges us everytime we are there. But anyways, last night was just plain fun at CG, with everyone dressing up in their ugliest Christmas attire. We had a Christmas trivia game, a runway walk-off to strut your Christmas best, and an 80's dance party to wrap it up. Who says dance parties don't happen after college:-)?

Adam really just looked like an Abercrombie kid

Hannah and Brandon

DJ Aaron spinning it up (I wish you could see the ornaments hanging in his hair)

1st & 2nd place winners- Joy & Phil Brock

A glimpse of the dance party winding down

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Christmas Time Is Here!

I am soooo excited that Christmas time is finally here! The weather is starting to get really cold (cold enough to snow anyways), shopping is at it's peak, parties are beginning, Christmas music is on 24/7 and holiday baking is underway! Could life GET any better:-) We put up our tree Thursday night for our 2nd Christmas together and our 1st in our new house. Much to Adam's disappointment, the artificial tree made it's way up again this year. I've also realized that it takes a whole lot more decorations than I have to fill an entire house and make it Christmas-y. I now have new respect for all those moms and grandmothers out there:-) Now with all the things I love about Christmas, I do feel the need to make some Christmas recommendations for anyone deciding to read this:-) 1. Don't get a job where you have to work holidays (ie. anything in healthcare) 2. Sing your little hearts out to Christmas music. My all-time favorite Christmas CD's are Amy Grant and Mariah Carey (although I will give honorable shout-outs to Elliot Yamin's CD and the one from Starbucks last year) 3. Bake all the best cookies you know how and feel free to bring them to me:-) 4. Please don't put giant blow up things in your front yard and 5. Don't forget that Christmas is really about celebrating the birth of our Savior! I hope everyone has a Merry Christmas season!!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Happy Birthday Adam!

Yesterday was my wonderful husband's 26th birthday.  Usually for birthdays we try to do something that neither of us has done before or something we can do together.  (For example, last year I took him to see a comedy show in DC and this year he bought me tickets to see the Nutcracker.)  Last night, I surprised him and we went to Texas de Brazil for dinner. It is a Brazilian steakhouse and if you have never been here, it is quite an experience!  Forewarning: YOU MUST LOVE MEAT to go here! :-) This restaurant  is crazy! Everyone has red and green tokens on their table and you flip them whenever you want more to eat or if you need a break.  If it's on green, these huge non-English- speaking scary men wearing pirate pants rush over to you and start carving meat off their large skewer straight onto your plate.  You have no idea what you are eating and if you ask, they mumble something and you pretend like you understand:-) We had lamb, chicken, and every type of steak you can imagine....all amazing! Not to mention the fried plantains, mashed potatoes, and 50-item salad bar!  I can just taste it now!  Afterwards we came back to the house and had cake/ice cream with our good friends Johnny & Kate and Ben & Samantha.  Adam says it was a great 26th birthday-- we're getting so old!
*** By-the-way, if you haven't noticed, I had to change the name of my blog to something more plural:-) Mr. anti-blog Adam has requested it be OUR blog that we can share together:-)

Monday, December 1, 2008

I can't believe it....

I honestly cannot believe that I am  starting this thing. But something has sucked me in this time.  Whether it's the ability to let my family keep in touch with my life even though we live far away, the chance to stalk all of my friends even more than I already do:-), or just the fact that I can make my page look super cute,  I'm going to give this thing a try.  I know that I don't have super important passionate and theological things to say (and I'm definitely not the best writer in the world), but who cares:-)  So today is December 1st and I am going to give it a try for the month of December.  Surely there is enough excitement in this month to get me through!