Sunday, November 25, 2012

Longest Weekend Ever

This has been the longest weekend ever, in the best way possible. I had to work Thursday and Friday, but since I normally work weekends anyway it still felt like the weekend. Then I had yesterday and today off so I got another weekend! It's been pretty busy, but somehow I feel more rested than I have in weeks.

Thursday I worked from 5am-11am, ran home to change and grab Mom and Tony, then went out to Greg's Mom's for the Thanksgiving meal. We ate at 1:00 and the guys were all in the living room watching football by about 1:45. Since some of the kids had migrated up to Greg's (he lives just up the hill from his mom) to play the PS3, I went to got check on them. They were happily shooting things in 3D (yes, G has a 3D TV... no wonder the kids went up there to play video games), so I went to take a nap. That's my kind of Thanksgiving! We stayed up there for most of the day. Actually, by the time we got home it was time for me to get ready for bed.

Friday I had another 5-11 shift, then Greg and I went to meet Amy and our friend Brad for lunch. Somehow we ended up going to Target on Black Friday. For the record, if you go at about 2:00pm on Black Friday it's really not that bad.
Calculator watch is making a comeback!
I got a few things for Anthony and one thing for Amy. Can I just say how much I love buying for people when they are with me? It was quite funny trying to hide it from her since the 4 of us were sharing one cart. After that we went to Publix. Greg was a little confused as to why we were going shopping at the grocery store when none of us really needed groceries. I finally convinced him we were going to hang out with our friends. He was still confused, but he went. :-) After that we went to see Rise of the Guardians. Such a good movie! I loved it. Then Greg and I ran a few more errands before heading to our respective homes for the evening.

Saturday was game day! Greg managed to get tickets the Tennessee/Kentucky game, so he took me and Amy. Amy and I headed to wander around the store until Greg was ready to head to the stadium. I was close to buying a new shirt and jacket, but changed my mind at the last second. I would regret that later. Once we got to campus we went ahead into the stadium to find our seats. It was pretty open... well, for Neyland Stadium. It holds over 100,00 people, and there were only a little over 84,000 people there. Yeah. Anyway, we had pretty good seats except one thing. They were FREEZING!
Our t-t-teeth were ch-ch-chattering
I don't know what it is about Neyland, but it turns into a wind tunnel. There is always a wind blowing inside. Awesome in September, not so much in November. Luckily it was warm in the sun, and there was a big patch of sun about 10 yards from our seats.
You can't really tell, but a lot of people migrated to the sunny side
Regardless, I had a good time. After the game Amy and I did some more shopping and went to dinner at Olive Garden.

Whew! Busy weekend. And I still have today! I went to church this morning, just had lunch, and I'm about to go to a basketball game with Greg. His improv group, Einstein Simplified, is performing at halftime. It should be fun. After that I have no plans. I may come home and go through my books and movies to take to McKay's. As much as it pains me to part with books, I have a lot that I don't read and won't read. Same with the movies. Ok, off to finish getting ready for the game! See you later!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

20 hours

That's the notice that Greg gave me that my mom, my brother, and I were invited to his mom's house for Thanksgiving. They are eating at around 1:00, and he texted me at 4:40. Bless him.

I know what you're thinking, "Jen, you guys have been together for nearly 4 years. Isn't the invitation a given?" To that I say "nope." Now, for the past 3 years I have gone to his family's to eat, but I was raised not to invite myself anywhere. So until we are married, he's going to have to actually invite me.

This whole situation has made me realize (or re-realize?) that there are 2 types of Southerners. First, there are those of us who politely wait for an invitation and knock on the door when we arrive. Second are those who come over whenever and just open the door.  I fall into both categories at one time or another. :-)

I have to be at work tomorrow at 5am, so I should probably start settling down. Luckily, I only have 2 more 5:00 shifts before we go back to the 6:00 schedule. I can make it!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Persistent

I personally do not believe in coincidences. I believe that God has his wonderful hands all over everything we experience and sends it to us at just the right moment, whether we know recognize it or not. Today is a wonderful case-in-point. But first, back story.

I love my church for a multitude of reasons, one of which is the use of the sermon series. I love knowing for the next x-many weeks we're going to be talking about ______. Our last series was called Lured and it was about how we all have weaknesses and Satan will try to use them lure (ha ha ha) us away from what God wants us to do. Loved it. Currently we are in a series called Ripple, based on the book The Circle Maker by Mark Batterson.
Being the good student that I am, I purchased the book (actually Greg got it for my because I misplaced my debit card.... add that to the list of reasons I love that man). The book and the sermons have talked about persistence in prayer. And I found myself being stalked by a parable.

The Parable of the Persistent Widow
Luke 18:1-8
Then Jesus told his diciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. He said: "in a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared about men. And there was a widow in that down who kept coming to him with the plea, 'Grant me justice agains my adversary.'

"For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, 'Even though I don't fear God or care about men, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won't eventually wear me out with her coming!'"

And the Lord said, "Listen to what the unjust judge says. and will not Got bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?"

Not only did I read about this parable in the book, and listen to Pastor Chris preach about it on Sunday, but my small group also talked about it 2 weeks ago! Ok, I get it! I need to be persistent in my prayers. And I knew which prayer I need to be persistent about: My prayer for a job. I have been "circling" that prayer since before I knew that's what I was doing!

While I was reading the book, the author was talking about his search for a new office space. He found a great location twice, but both times he just missed being able to get the property. He was wondering what God was up to, because he really felt either of those places would have been great locations and he knew it was a move he needed to make. Then he found the perfect place, but it wasn't for sale. Yeah, guess where he moved his office? God had told him no on the first options because He had something perfect in mind.

No coincidences. If he had been able to get either of the first two properties he wouldn't have been able to do great things later. So what does that have to do with me? I read this part of the book less than 5 minutes before I got an email saying that I was no longer in the running for a job. I feel like God has been priming me to know that sometimes He will say no because there's something better, but that I shouldn't give up praying for it to happen. As a matter of fact, I should wear Him out with my prayers. So that's what I'll do. 

Sunday, November 4, 2012

PBF October Book Club

I've been following the Peanut Butter Fingers blog for a while now. I originally started reading because of her awesome taste in music and for workout inspiration, but I stuck around because she's fun! Then I discovered she had a monthly book club, and I decided to stick around! This month's book was Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher.
Overall, I liked this book. It was a quick read, but it definitely wasn't "light" reading. The story is about a girl, Hannah, who commits suicide, but before she dies she records herself explaining her rationale for ending her life, naming 13 people as contributors to her death. Each person on her list is asked to send the tapes to the next person until all 13 people have heard her final words. The story starts Clay (one of the middle-of-the-list people) receiving the tapes. It was interesting to see how the story developed. the author did a good job drawing you into both Hannah's and Clay's respective stories.

This story was hard to read for me in the same way that The Other Boleyn Girl was hard to read. You know where it's heading, you want to stop it, but you can't. After I read it I kept telling people that it destroyed me in a good way, and they should read it so they would understand. I stand by my dramatic statement. It did destroy me. It made me realize how important a kind word can be. I was constantly reassessing my interactions to see if I could be nicer. I still am.

The book had it's flaws. Hannah's and Clay's stories happen on the same page and some times my brain didn't make the switch between voices. There were also a few unanswered questions, but I think that might have been part of the point. There are always unanswered questions in stories about a death. I still recommend it... you just might want to follow it up with a children's book like I did.
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