Friday, December 23

The City of Lights

Whew! I can't believe that it has been almost a month since I posted about my parents anniversary. Time flies when you're having fun? Well that wasn't quite the case. Time flies when it's the end of the semester, is more like it.

I wrapped up the semester with three As and one B. I'm definitely pleased! My finals were not to bad but packing on the other hand, was just as bad as I thought it was going to be. Not only did I have to pack for a months time at home but for practically a weeks time for NYC! Oh not to mention that Jordan wouldn't be back in Texas until four days after I am... so I have to live off my NYC bags for that much longer at home. Craziness to try and separate the two and consider all the factors. Of course, things were overlooked. I forgot to bring some silly random toiletries to NYC, which was no big deal. I left some crucial things in the truck, for Jordan to bring home. For example: extra underwear, my laptop,  running gear, and Christmas presents! wha! However, I made it work.

So we spent five and a half days in the big city under all the lights and the honking horns. I had an absolute blast!  I adore all things about New York. The people, the places, the shops, the lights, and the noises. It's truly unique and nothing is more spectacular than NYC at Christmas time. NYC will always hold dear to Jordan and I's hearts since we were engaged there two years ago, right in the heart of Central Park. Of course, we had to visit again!

Let me reverse and start at the beginning of our journey to New York. We left Tuesday morning at 10, just after I had finished my last final at eight. Goodness! Can you say exhausting? Tyler, Jordan, and I piled ourselves and our stuff into the truck for the seven hour drive up towards the city. It was actually quite a fun drive since we got to go through Washington DC, Baltimore, Delaware, and NJ. We crossed into the city through the Lincoln tunnel in Hoboken. Of course, we entered the city at a great price - running tolls! Yes, we were cashless and acquired a great toll debt. I am just going to through this out there, WHY DON'T THEY ACCEPT CREDIT CARDS? It's so easy to swipe! If airports can do it, tolls can do it. Or hey, be like Dallas and have no booths - just drive under cameras. Bill me please. So after an hour of waiting to cross the tunnel after we exited for it and skipping out on the last 12 dollar toll booth, we made it into the city!

Has NYC ever seen a big ole honking Dodge Ram on it's streets? Doubt it! We made it to the hotel and then went out for dinner and visited Times Square!

As I already mentioned, we made it out to Central Park again. We wandered through the majority of the park, just enjoying the people, the performers, and the nature. We had the opportunity to eat at the Boat House but since the only thing on the menu I would eat was a hamburger, I suggested we skipped out. We then wandered our way around 5th avenue and found POP Burgers, conveniently a burger place, to eat lunch. It was such a fabulous little place. The food was immaculate. Tyler said he had the best burger there that he has ever eaten! Such a big deal, right?  After our bellies were filled with onion rings, burgers, fries, and shakes, we headed towards FAO Shwarz and walked down the rest of 5th avenue. We made stops in Berdorf Goodman, Henry Bendel, and Mckenzie Childs, of course!

Then we headed to Radio City Music Hall to see the Rockette's Christmas Spectacular! It was absolutely delightful. Such a good show!

The whole family went to the 9/11 memorial which was absolutely immaculate. You could totally feel the emptiness there. The memorial was incredible to see. Before we visited the 9/11 memorial, we also went to see the Dead Sea Scrolls since they happened to be in NYC the same time that we were. Those were really neat to to be able to see the manuscripts.

We also hit up the Metropolitan. It was my first time there. It was so neat!

Of course there was a ton of eating of fabulous food and a lot of shopping since that's what NYC is all about! We are so thankful to be able to share moments like these with our families. I had the best time! NYC truly puts you in to the Christmas Spirit, if I hadn't had enough of it at Liberty!

Merry Christmas to y'all & a Happy New Year,

It's About Time

So I haven't posted about a craft since I wrote about my sewing projects in "A Quilt or Two." It's definitely about time that I share. I have done tiny little crafts between now and then... I painted a couple picture frames, I decorated a couple of slippers with flowers and crystals, and I also painted an all white quote sign. Other than those, I haven't been too crafty this fall.

I took on a pretty big project for my mom for this Christmas. She had been talking with me all fall about wanting me to paint ornaments for Christmas presents for friends. For those of you who know my mother, know that she has an obsession with glass ornaments! So when I got back from NYC I had two days filled with painting and dolling up ornaments. I thought I would share my creations!

My mom had these great large magenta glass balls and some medium sized yellow ones for me to paint. We talked about various ideas that we had and took inspiration from Mckenzie Childs, one of our favorite designers ever!

So this is what we came up with...

Mckenzie Childs inspired Christmas tree 
Lovely roses
This was just to show that the roses are on both sides; this is before the addition of the bows!
Betsey Johnson inspired leopard print
My work station for the two days
I made four balls of each print. It was super fun to be able to do some handmade gifts this year. I'm very pleased with the way they turned out! :) Maybe next year you could try some yourself, since all you need is some ornaments, acrylic paint, and great ribbon!

Merry Christmas,

Wednesday, December 21

A Silver Year

Here's to my wonderful parents!

Yesterday, they celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary!
What a blessing their marriage and relationship has been to my life and others in their lives. Since Dad took Mom to NYC for their anniversary, I decided that I would make them dinner. I made them creamy grilled chicken picata and ceasar salad. I also surprised them with fruit pizza, the size of the Earth, for dessert! They were so grateful!

My parents met in Dallas in the early spring of 1986. They were at a dance thing in one of the sky-scrapers in downtown. The story goes that my mother saw my dad from across the room and thought "Ohhh! I want to dance with that guy!"

Well guess what? At the end of the year, they got married in Seattle at my grandma Anne's house. They were meant for each other. Dad is punctual, Mom is not. Mom is talkative and extremely outgoing, Dad is not so much. They both have the most tender hearts. Mom is creative, Dad is analytical. They both have a great sense of humor. Dad is organized, Mom is not. They are both brilliant. They are both hard working. They are both dedicated. They are each others best friends.

My parents have lived in several different homes and states throughout out their marriage but the love has been ever present. My parents lived in the Dallas for the first five years of their marriage. Mom surprised Dad with a cat, Pasha, for his birthday in 1989 and then she gave him the so important gift of me, one year later!They made it through only being able to have one child, enduring the winter chill of the Minnesotan air, the death of our cat, sending their daughter off to college, watching their young daughter get married to the man of her dreams, decorating for Christmas each year, being empty nesters, training two dogs, and the Texas heat. Of course, these are light hearted 'trials' but they just represent that my God-fearing parents have been in it for the long hall.

I believe that my mom and dad's relationship truly echos 1 Corinthians 13...

My dad is constantly having to practice patience as my mother finishes getting ready to go out although getting married in nine months is not very patient. [Love is patient]

My parents are incredibly loving towards each other. I have never ever questioned their devotion to each other. They are each other's greatest fans. Always cheering, always rooting, always supporting. Although, their may be a lot of teasing going on [Love is kind]

My parents always want the best for each other. They encourage each other to eat healthy, stay in shape, and love the Lord. [Love does not envy]

My parents consider themselves to be life long partners. My dad is the head of the household, however he walks side by side my mother. My mother does not 'wear the pants' but respects my father as he loves her. They are equals, taking on life hand in hand. Although, they like to argue who is the 'most favorite parent.' [Love does not boast and it is not proud]

My parents relationship is filled with the utmost respect. They communicate openly with each other. They speak in love about each other and towards each other. They have each others backs. Although, a joke about one another might be said here and there [Love does not dishonor others]

The purpose of their relationship is to get to know God better. They are not in the marriage to improve their self image or please their self but to honor each other and God. Although, Dad may wash the dishes every night so that he may be on mom's good side. [Love is not self-seeking]

My parents are able to communicate in love, most of the time. They have made it through 25 years of marriage solely on the basis that they can communicate. This does not mean that one might not get heated towards each other every so often but there remains respect, gentleness, and love. Although, Dad may whine at mom if she didn't walk the dogs during the day. [Love is not easily angered]

My parents are forgiving. In 25 years of marriage, they for sure have had disagreements and wrong doings but since God forgave them, they forgive each other. Although, Mom remembers when dad finishes the last bit of chocolate goodies in the pantry. [Love keeps no records of wrongs]

My parents have been faithful and truthful to each other for the past 25 years. Although, there may be secrets about upcoming Christmas gifts [Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth]

My parents always protect each other from harm, always trust each other , always hope for the best for each other, and always persevere through the tough times. [Love always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perserveres]

Their love hasn't failed. It definitely has not been their effort to keep their marriage together that has made it last but their believe in their Heavenly Father. Since He is the center of their relationship, he acts as the bonding glue. God has truly blessed them with each other!

So grateful for their love,

Tuesday, December 6

Coming to a Close

Well, it's just that time of the year. The semester is coming to a close. I have been finished with class lectures since last Wednesday but I have one more test tomorrow in Critical Care before finals, which I am supposed to be studying for right now! eek!

It's that crucial time when we are all calculating and figuring out our possible grades for each of our classes. What's do I have to get on my last two assignments to get an A? Can I even get an A? What is the lowest possible score I can get on my final to get a B?  Do I even need to show up to the final? These are the questions that have been passed around the past week. Tyler, Jordan, & I have been figuring out everything as I am sure every other college student too.

The good news is that I only have two legitimate finals. Two cumulative finals and one group presentation. The group presentation is on End of Life Care relating to Scientologists. Pretty Interesting stuff... weird but interesting. I get a cheat sheet for Critical Care - one side of a whole piece of paper! What am I supposed to put on it? Yikes! Mrs. Kennedy, one of my professors for the class, said that one semester a kid squeezed the entire semester's notes on it... pretty miraculous! That is going to consume my life after I finish this last test. Oh, can't forget about my other final for mental health!

I am ready to be done with this semester and I'm not exactly sure why. It honestly FLEW by. Perhaps, I am ready for a long non-thinking break or I am just excited for what next semester holds. Who knows!

I do know that I am absolutely dreading packing... already. Oh, how I hate it. So much energy goes into packing and the fact that we are making a pit stop in NYC doesn't help the packing situation (although it helps my excitement to get going!)  What do I want to wear at home? Well, what's the temperature going to be like? I have no idea! How much should I pack for a month? Should we bring some stuff back that we aren't going to use over the Spring semester? What am I going to WANT to wear? What about NYC? I must be fashionable when I am there... BUT it's freezing! How cute of clothes can you wear when its cold? Texas weather is so unpredictable... it's actually 30 degrees colder at home then in Lynchburg right now. So how is that supposed to help all my packing dilemmas? It doesn't. Don't forget the chargers for the computer and cell phones!

It is also that time where we are getting together with all of our groups of friends to have a last hoorah before the semester end. This past Saturday, Libby hosted a girls Christmas Party at her house and it was absolutely a blast! We had sweets & treats! We played Dirty Santa, other games, and chatted!

I met for dinner with my junior year clinical group last night for dinner at La Caretta. La Caretta is our typical meet up place from this year and last! We have had dinner together twice this semester just to get together. These guys will always be close in my heart since we survived junior year together!

I am having a small Christmas get together with my old roomies and still besties, Sarah W, Allison, Abbie, Sarah B, and Kari, on Wednesday for a last hang out session before Christmas break and a good-bye to Sarah W party as she spends next semester in Washington, DC. Can't wait for some time with these girls.

As the semester end craziness gets ready to settle in, I just have to remember that my Lord is my shelter for peace and strength. We will get through this thing!