Monday, February 27, 2006

Because I want the world to know...

Yes, I am committed to this crazy and beautiful thing I've chosen in Denver.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

a realization over lunch...

As I sat down to lunch today, I looked at the people around me. Many people, eating alone, which isn't unusual at lunch, but here is what I realized.

A majority of the people around you are both sad and lonely.

I did not make a blanket statement, not everyone is sad and lonely, but a lot of people are. Hell, I'll even include myself in that statement.

A majority of the people, myself included, are both sad and lonely.

And I think blogs only further this cause. When I originally created my blog, I wanted to quit writing my supporters each month and have them be able to check in and see what I was doing every day.

There is some sick satisfaction knowing almost 8,000 people have read my blog. Who honestly cares on a daily basis what I am doing? I am not saving the world with this, I'm not even changing the world, I'm simply processing out some things that are important to me. By having a blog, I am fulfilling some space of loneliness.

People today long for deep, meaningful relationships. Not even romantically, but friendship wise. I know that I long to have people in Denver know me deeply. To the core, where only a few have entered and love me in that place. I know that I long to have a romantic relationship and that in certain moments I'll be attracted to any guy that shows me attention.

So what does this mean? It means for me that a simple Christian-ese answer isn't going to fit. Old ways of thinking no longer fit once you realize the pain you are in. Does it mean that I should date the next person that walks in the door? No, that will only create more pain. What I do think though is that connecting with the Trinity, reclaiming my name as Beloved is where the sadness and loneliness can begin to fade away. And when you are as highly relationally as I am, and when a majority of your relationships seem like they aren't going the direction you would want, the pain is almost unbearable and it begins to feel like the walls are caving in. And this is a place, a place where the loneliness and sadness consume me, is a place I can no longer live...

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

another layer of grieving no one tells you about

By the grace of God, I had Monday off of work. Instead of lounging and playing all day, I was productive. I had doctor's appointments all day long. That's the beauty of health insurance, you can go to the doctor.

I had a dermatologist appointment first thing (and by first thing, I mean 10:15 am). In 2003, I had a mole removed that was pre-melanoma, so every year, I have to get all my moles checked. Yesterday she found one that she wants to remove because the color isn't consistent.

At 1:00 pm, I had an eye doctor's appointment. For the last few years, my eyes haven't changed in their prescription. I knew I needed new glass, however, yesterday I found out that my contact lenses need to be changed as well. Here's to becoming increasingly more blind.

At 3:00 pm, I had a dentist appointment. Yearly cleaning and year 27 of no cavities. He was amazing and I highly recommend this man (so gentle and they take digital xrays, so cool) But they did make the mention that I needed to keep up with my flossing. I know, I know...

The point of this post isn't to tell you that I went to the doctor's yesterday. The point is to tell you how I miss my old doctor's in KC. The people who have been seeing me consistently for over 11 years. Who know my medical history and know that needles freak me out. That I know who is good, who is not and where to go are consistent. Yesterday was not. I know it seems odd to be sad about that, but deflect your shame somewhere else, this is something that makes me sad.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

What's on your mind?

So, Maria posted on how I didn't win $365 million in the lottery last night. I was using Calvinist thinking that God's plan was for me to win, obviously that fell through (like most Calvinist thinking does, but I won't go into that here).

My weekend so far has consisted of middle ground. Friday night was spend playing poker and winning (that's right, I won, and now I'm 3rd in the Radius standings). We looked over Rett's pictures from Africa and then sat with a friend who needed a shoulder. Saturday I had breakfast with Jenny, my eyebrows done, a haircut, and a traumatic experience at Target (and it was truly a Target run). We (Maria, Vivie, and I) sat around last night, watching random tv and just relaxing. Today we (Maria, Vivie, and I) had brunch and then a trip to the burbs for the Mills.

But my mind comes back to something that's important to me. When I first moved to Denver, I struggled (as I think most people do when they relocate). Trying to find which grocery store I would use, how do I get around, where do I get my dry cleaning done, which coffee shop do I go to when I don't want one ever puts out a book on these items. I couldn't tell you what way was up, and in the midst I wondered why I came. But something happened to me in October that changed my perspective. I remembered that I had a choice in moving here. And I remembered that God was meeting me in my choice, not punishing me for the decision I made. And slowly things began to change. That doesn't mean I don't have my moments where I question what God is doing, it just means that I try not to let it spin me as much.

Many of my friends have received an invite for Radius' spring retreat (or community intensive) and their questions are more of why should I come when you haven't connected. The truth is that I have now. In the beginning, there were many factors in why I didn't connect and I truly believe that Radius is in a turn. The RCI is important to me, not only because of what God can do through an experience like that, but also because I want the important people of my life to see what I am doing now. Having me try to explain it is just as futile (I think) as trying to tell you why I love the sunset, the stars, and Zach Braff.

We have 7 weeks till this event happens and there are a few people who I would love to see there: Tiff, Kelly, Liz, Christie, Craig, Leah, and Bri. My expectation is that one, maybe 2 will come, but to the people that I love the most, if you came and experienced not only Raidus but my world, that would be the best gift ever.

I know many of you are resistant...I've heard all the excuses. But we will work it out if you just say yes. Trust me, in my eyes, it is important enough for your presnese to be in the room.

On a really random note, itunes allows you to download "The Office", and I just downloaded the episode diversity...i can't wait to watch it over, and over, and over again.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Most parents only dream of this day...

I just got back from lunch. My friend Katherine and I had decided to go to Pasta, Pasta, Pasta, located one block over because it is Chicago Cold outside (I'm not kidding either). But the sun is shining, like typical Denver weather, so you take the good with the bad.

Anyways, the beauty of Pasta, Pasta, Pasta is that it's light Italian food, and it's what I can only imagine as the food I will have one day when I am visiting. I always get the same thing: Chicken Piccata, a Stuffed Bell Pepper, and Brussel Sprouts. That's right, this place makes the best brussel sprouts. They are roasted with salt, pepper, and EVOO (extra virgin olive oil) and they are damn good.

When we walked in, it was packed, so I quickly made a scan of the options and yes, there were some brussel sprouts left. However, once I finally made it to the front of the line, they were out of them. SO DISAPPOINTED. That was going to be the highlight of my day. I know, I know, brussel sprouts as the highlight of my day, but it's true.

Now, I need something sweet to get me through the next 3 1/2 hours...maybe I can grab a few thin mints from the office...thank God for the Girl Scout Cookie season (and just for your FYI: I was a top cookie seller 2 years running, and yes I am very proud of that).

Thursday, February 16, 2006

But when it snows, it so pretty

Winter has finally arrived in Colorado. Today the high will be 21 and the snow will continue to fall throughout most of the day. This might be the first time in 3 weeks we haven't seen the sun all day. That's the beauty of Colorado, it's hard to have SAD when the sun shines 300 days a year.

But it's absolutely beautiful outside. I've been sleeping hard this last week and I didn't want to get out of bed. I wanted to roll my tv to my bedroom and stay in bed all day long. Ahh, but one must work to support a lifestyle they want. Anyways, my dear friend Andy is coming to visit next weekend, so we are going up to the mountains to hang out and ski. I cannot wait. It's like a mini vacation, which is what I need. Plus Vivie and my friend Jon will be joining us as well, so it will be great, plus I'm sure many stories will be involved afterwards.

On another side note, Viv and Maria spend most of our days, sending emails to each other. Viv is no longer working at that company (the beauty of temping, you never know where you'll be) so today will only contained to Maria and I chatting (well, maybe, I haven't heard from her yet).

And I saved the most important thing for last. You officially have 1 month to celebrate my birthday. In case you're curious to know what I want for my birthday (and have missed the two links on the right side mentioning), you can go here, view my list, and buy me something.

Until then, I'm going to stare out the front of my office and wish I was still in bed.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

I choo-choo choose you...

Yes, today is Valentine's Day. Year 26 without a Valentine to speak of. Last year it was a year of celebrating, not because I had a valentine, but because there were possibilities for valentines. And today, as the sun is shining and the 60 degree weather creeps by my office window, I realize there is no possibility of a valentine this year.

Now, today isn't typical. I arrived at work at 6:30, after leaving at 5:40 pm last night. I worked late, got here early and thought I would get an ulcer in the mean time. Work has been stressing me out. I don't like to be stressed, and I don't like to be up at 5:00 am (I don't even get up that early when we go skiing, in fact, I haven't been up this early since I opened for Starbucks).

But today is a good day overall. Again, I'm grateful for the community I have, even though at times it is painful. I'm grateful for new friendships and old and the ones that remind me that we will be friends for life. I'm grateful for the journey I am on and the possibility that people will be able to see what that looks like in April. But overall, I'm grateful for love. I'm grateful for falling into this year and out of it as well. It is love that compels me to move toward others, to understand others, and to be toward others. It is because of love that I get up in the morning because I know love will surprise me in some fashion. Like over Chinese dinner or through emails throughout the day.

I may no have a physical representation of it in a form of a boy, but I have it everywhere I look, in every face I see, in every step I take.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

a meditation...

After watching the Grammy's last night (by the way, the most boring award show in history...but it would be an awesome concert experience and we all know how I feel about concerts), I was moved by the lyrics and performance of U2's song One. I recently pulled up the lyrics, and here's what they say...

Is it getting better
Or do you feel the same
Will it make it easier on you now
You got someone to blame
You say...
One love
One life
When it's one need
In the night
One love
We get to share it
Leaves you baby if you
Don't care for it
Did I disappoint you
Or leave a bad taste in your mouth
You act like you never had love
And you want me to go without
Well it's...
Too late
To drag the past out into the light
We're one, but we're not the same
We get to
Carry each other
Carry each other
Have you come here for forgiveness
Have you come to raise the dead
Have you come here to play Jesus
To the lepers in your head
Did I ask too much
More than a lot
You gave me nothing
Now it's all I got
We're one
But we're not the same
Well we
Hurt each other
Then we do it again
You say
Love is a temple
Love a higher law
Love is a temple
Love the higher law
You ask me to enter
But then you make me crawl
And I can't be holding on
To what you got
When all you got is hurt
One love
One blood
One life
You got to do what you should
One life
With each other
One life
But we're not the same
We get to
Carry each other
Carry each other

Even as I read through those lyrics again, I'm struck by so much...that our differences shouldn't hinder us from moving towards people. That we may not always agree with each other theologically, psychologically, emotionally, but that we are still part of something bigger. That though we may be upset that someone's "liberal" thinking is hindering them, that for the first time in the person's life, they are actually able to think on their own. That God cannot be put in a box...and in the end that we are a reflection of God to each other and that we must learn how to be a community with everyone.

Amen U2, Amen...

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

I love Journey

After listening to easy listening every day, you begin to hear songs you secretly love. This below has become my new favorite song to listen to when I drive...and yes, I do love Journey. If they went on tour with Steve Perry, I would go.

Faithfully, by Journey

Highway run
Into the midnight sun
Wheels go round and round
You're on my mind
Restless hearts
Sleep alone tonight
Sendin' all my love
Along the wire
They say that the road
Ain't no place to start a family
Right down the line
It's been you and me
And lovin' a music man
Ain't always what it's supposed to be
Oh girl you stand by me
I'm forever yours...faithfully
Circus life
Under the big top world
We all need the clowns
To make us smile
Through space and time
Always another show
Wondering where I am
Lost without you
And being apart ain't easy
On this love affair
Two strangers learn to fall in love again
I get the joy
Of rediscovering you
Oh girl, you stand by me
I'm forever yours...faithfully
Oh, oh, oh, oh
Faithfully, I'm still yours
I'm forever yours
Ever yours...faithfully

Monday, February 06, 2006

HOTT! (That's hot with 2 t's)

Vivie and I

Thanks to Luke, he took this hott pic of Vivie and I at her party on Friday. That's right, I said we were hott, and it's deal with it.

Friday, February 03, 2006

I swear this is my last post today

We listen to an easy listening station at work.

Currently, they are playing this song, which takes me back to every single middle school dance I ever went to and makes me remember Todd Redburn.

I wonder whatever happened to him...He was the love of my life in middle school...Now granted he paid no attention to me, but I was so in love with him.

Well, him and Brian Watson.

You should see what vengeance looks like

My friend Bri has a blog...I love my friend Bri. She and I knew of each other during our freshman and sophomore years of college (we even took a random road trip to see Bebo Norman play in Oklahoma...but that's for a different post) but it wasn't until our junior year that we really became friends. She spent a Thanksgiving once with my crazy family and I'm eternally grateful for our friendship. Now, if she would only come out to visit in April...say April 7-9, that would be great!

Anyways, Bri went like weeks without posting, and I was beginning to get worried that I couldn't catch up with her. Thankfully she has begun posting again, and not only posting, but posting with a vengeance. So, read about my dear sensitive friend's's a good one.

Thank you Ask Yahoo!

So, for years I have been telling people the old say "Beer for liquor makes you sicker, Liquor before beer you are in the clear" isn't true. It was one of the valuable things I learned in Human Nutrition in college. Thankfully, Ask Yahoo! Answered my question and now I can prove to the world that no matter what you drink, your body can't tell the difference, so ultimately that means, enjoy it all.

Don't believe me? Read below...

Dear Yahoo!:
Is the saying "Beer before liquor, never sicker, liquor before beer, never fear" physiologically accurate?
Allyson Santa Barbara, California

Dear Allyson:
No. Portland's Willamette Week interviewed a nutrition expert and a pharmacologist; both nixed the theory. They astutely note that mixing different types of alcohol is generally a bad idea.

The reasoning behind the proverb is that it's easier on your body to absorb weaker alcoholic drinks, like beer, later in the evening. This probably holds some merit. It's also true that your body tends to process alcohol from carbonated drinks faster. But any piece of advice regarding alcohol consumption that contains the line "never fear" is obviously pretty suspect.

Hangovers are thought to be exacerbated by congeners, which are the chemical compounds responsible for the taste and color of various types of alcohol. Darker drinks, like whiskies and red wines, tend to have more congeners. So, lighter-colored drinks like white wine, vodka, and gin could help those eager to avoid a headache.

But drink enough of anything and you'll be hurting. Try drinking plenty of water before and after you get up, and throw down some vitamins, including C, E, and a milk-thistle supplement.

So internet friends, enjoy your weekend, but not too much! I'll be back on Monday!

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Happy Groundhog's Day

This is one of my favorite holidays. I typically do the same thing every year. I go out and I rent by far one of the best movies Bill Murray has ever done.

I love this movie. I think it's so funny, and the scene where Bill is driving with the good!! In fact, it's on my wishlist on Amazon, so you could buy it for me for my birthday, which is coming up very soon.

Here's a great quote from this wonderful movie. Perhaps after you watch The Office tonight, you should rent this movie and enjoy this wonderful holiday.

Phil: It's the same things your whole life. "Clean up your room.", "Stand up straight.", "Pick up your feet.", "Take it like a man.", "Be nice to your sister.", "Don't mix beer and wine, ever.". Oh yeah, "Don't drive on the railroad track."
Gus: Eh, Phil. That's one I happen to agree with.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

A first of many...

Aidan Mark Smith
Born: January 31, 2006
Time: 7:51 am
8 lbs, 7 oz, 20" long