Sunday, August 28, 2016

Monday Musings ~ Remember

...a few thoughts, a little scattered... 

This morning as I was in a haste to get ready for church (read: dog woke me up at 8:28 and I typically leave for church at 8:45) I hadn't picked out anything to wear. When I looked in my closet, this skirt came to mind, one I don't think I've even worn in last couple of years, but one I really like so I have hung onto it. 

My church has been in the midst of a series "Together: Why We Gather" which has been great teaching on principles of church gathering. Today concluded the series and the topic was worship, as in singing songs worship. 

As I threw on my clothes and headed out the door to church I thought about the last time I had worn this outfit.  I was a date to an engagement party, it was the evening after my car was stolen in the afternoon, despite the circumstances, we had a great time at the party. So many pictures were taken of us that night, but neither of us took a picture of us, so I have no pictures by which to remember that night. 

As the preacher was teaching he talked about one of the 3 purposes in worship was to remember; what God has done and that our minds were wired for words, coupled with melody.  How songs can connect you to experiences and lyrics can lead you to deep emotion of remembrance.  

Several of my sweet friends gave me a compliment on my outfit today.  Another sent an IG picture asking if that was the same skirt I had on. I told a couple of friends this has been in my closet, but it's not been worn, I can remember exactly where I was when I wore it last. 

But that was the past, and I can remember all the melodies God has given me since then.
The way he's grown me and stretched me. 
The people he's gifted to my life. 
The healing he's done to my heart. 
The lies I have overcome. 
The new memories I have of the same things. 
A picture to remember.
And, today looking back and looking forward, time has kept going.
I've dared to live my life, the one only meant for me. 
I'm choosing to celebrate, for memories give stories. 
And, stories make up my life. 
And, my life story is a good one. 


Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Summer Style | Denim

Even though Texas has consecutive 100-degree summer days, I still default to jeans for some evenings out. Here are a few recent summer nights in denim...

I looked at the tag in these jeans, they are Gap from Fall 08 and "limited edition" according to the tag, perhaps also when flare jeans were "in" style the last time around. Don't doubt, I've worn them for all of these years whether flare was "in" or "out" in the words of Heidi on Project Runway.  If I was ever told I could only have 6 shirts I would pick a tank, v-neck and button up in both black and white. Denim and white top is one of my all time favorite combos, change it up and make it look unique depending on the accessories. This particular day, an old JCrew tank and green beaded necklace, plus a leopard belt and wedges. The white clutch has become a go-to that I reach for regularly.
On a summer road trip day through Round Top I picked up this "Hard to Handle" tank, and have worn it a few times already. These jeans are a random pick up from Target, but several years ago and are likely to need some patches applied soon to stay wearable. They are perfect for summer though.  The necklace is a years prior Junk Gypsy find and fun add to a simple graphic tank. Wedges are now on their 3rd summer, and still going strong, they are Splendid LA and found in clearance section of DSW. And, yes the white clutch again. :)
This night was hilarious as this t-shirt gets lots of comments from strangers. Most notable "do you have a stay at home shirt?". Ummmm...  I first saw this T posted on Nordstrom's Instagram and it was a must have for me. {Click here, and on sale!} Any given day when someone asks me what I'm wearing out I often respond with "jeans and a t", so expect to see this repeat. Just like the necklace and the clutch and the wedges.
Back to the first pair of jeans. Here they are again. Again with a T, found this one at Mindy Mae's Market and purchased during a sale. {Click here, sign up for re-stock notification} I felt it was appropriate for turning 40. Also, this night I had been in and outside and you know sometimes you're just done with your hair. The star of the photos was /practicing/showing off his high-five skills.
Stay true to what you like, and repeat it often!


Monday, August 22, 2016

Monday Musings ~ Back to School

...a few thoughts, a little scattered....

I graduated college in December 1997, a semester early and upon graduation I planned to work for the Spring semester, apply to grad school and begin a MBA program in the Fall 1998.  

Then I went to work. 

And, I kept working. 

But, I kept thinking about that MBA for all of these years. 

And asking questions....
Where can I go? 
When is the right time? 
How much does it cost? 
Can I do it part time while working? 
Can I even get a reasonable score on the GMAT?
I haven't been in school in a LONG time!! 

{Fast forward 18.5 years}

And, one conversation at just the right time. 
I applied. 

I was accepted. 
I had an appointment with an Admissions Counselor.
I registered. 
I figured out 21st century college and found my online pre-class instructions. 
I got some school supplies. 
I have an Introduction Worksheet complete. 

And, tomorrow, the journey officially begins. 

And, 20 years later from when I would have just been starting that MBA,
Lord willing I will graduate Summer 2018. 

I'm reminded the years don't matter, it's accomplishing the goal. 

Here goes...

Monday, August 15, 2016

Monday Musings ~ Model Athletes

...a few thoughts, a little scattered....

If you're like me, the TV has been on most evenings watching the Olympics, captivated by their stories of triumph and their athleticism to excel in their sport.  

In the last week I have... 
watched athletes acknowledge frustration with their performance. 
questioned announcers who criticize athletes. 
celebrated world record breaking performances. 
teared up watching a gold medal ceremony. 
witnessed Olympic history. 
watched teammates cheering each other on. 
read stories of controversy.  

I recently had the chance to meet an Olympic Gold Medalist, Hall of Famer, All Star and MVP. 
A Naval Academy graduate and Navy Lieutenant. 
David "The Admiral" Robinson.

I spent an afternoon as pretty much an observer. 
Of words spoken and actions, which speak loud. 

I saw...
signatures on baseballs, to laughs of "I didn't play baseball". 
photos and conversations with younger athletes. 
intentional conversation with students. 
challenge if something isn't working, to change it, not just let it be. 
friendships of athletes. 
interviews with the press.
handshakes with staffers.
personal testimony of success and lessons. 
time. for everyone. not just some. for all. 

Arguably one of the greatest to every play the game of basketball. 

Who could have just retired. 
But, his legacy is not only about the sport. 

Instead, equipping the next generation. 
Investing in them. 
Giving them an opportunity of education and experience. 

And, that is worth more than gold. 

Thank you David Robinson. 
For being a true role model athlete. 

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Monday Musings ~ Tribe {on Tuesday}

....a few thoughts, a little scattered....

Yes, it's Tuesday. But, sometimes, that is how life is and so this week Monday's Musings are on Tuesday. And, Monday was a good day.

This past week I've been thinking about my tribe, the ones who live this life alongside me, and this graphic came across my newsfeed one day... 
As this decade of 30's is closing, looking back lots has changed in my tribe, but the ones that are here as I head into the next decade are significant. In just the last couple of weeks I have gathered at the table with sweet friends, over breakfast (my favorite!!) and been reminded of the gifts in my tribe. 

The ones who are new to my tribe, that came in the midst of a new season in my life. 
The ones you can't imagine haven't always been a part of your tribe. 
The ones that ask hard questions, and speak kind words and truth to you. 
The ones who don't just say "I will pray for you", but really DO pray and check in on you. 
The ones you have known a long time and the bottom of 3rd cup of coffee feels like maybe you're just getting started and there aren't enough hours to cover all the topics. 
The ones that let me be me. 
No makeup. 
Hair in a top knot. 
Nike shorts. 
That same half-zip, again. 
Where "I'm ok" isn't the answer to the question. 
Where I don't have to be ok. 
This tribe of mine is shiny quarters, every one of them. 
My life is better because of them. 
Like a perfectly chosen pancake flight. 
A little bit of all of your favorite things, though each unique and a rich contribution to my life. 


Monday, August 1, 2016

Monday Musings ~ How do you do it?

....a few thoughts, a little scattered....

In July I spent a weekend with one of my college besties and her family at her annual cousins reunion. You should know that I've never been to a family reunion, and this one is a big reunion, complete with an amazing pot luck Saturday night and brunch on Sunday!  #breakfastalwayswinsmeover

She asked me to come along as an extra set of eyes and hands to help with her three littles as she didn't think her husband was going to come. Not because he had to work, or something else going on, but because physically he's not well and ALS makes things like a weekend camping at the lake harder than average days at home. But, he did come, and was still there the first of two nights I spent with them. We had a good time gathered with all of her family and lots of laughs.

Every time I look at my sweet friend I am amazed by her strength. 
And, I think "I don't know how you do this." 
But, not in the context of not doing it, because that isn't an option. 

But, more in sheer awe and humility of her strength. 

There's so many cliches about "hard"...
what doesn't kill you makes you stronger
God won't give you more than you can handle 
I don't know how you do it
You are stronger than me
Of all the hard roads I have friends on right now... 
cancer, illness of all kinds, grief, marriage struggles, infertility, the list goes on 
Not one of those people would tell you these aren't some of the hardest days of their lives.
But, they also would tell you they are just doing what they know to do. 
Day by day. 
With the hope for another day. 
And enough strength to get through that next day. 
In watching and living hard days, 
I know that "strength" comes up from within you like you never knew you had. 
But none of them are writing the book on how to do it. 
And all of them would tell you, you just do what you have to. 
To keep going forward, keep fighting for it. 

No one would choose the road they are on. 
But all of them are testimony to the strength from their faith.
That is what is different, and faith is what gives them the hope to press on. 
For research and appointments.
For hard conversations and tasks. 
I've also learned the value of showing up. 
There's not always something that can be identified as "needed". 
But showing up will always meet a need. 
And listening. 
Often no one needs more advice and counsel. 
They need a safe place to be themselves and let out the tears and fears.
Ask rhetorical questions that they don't need an answer to. 

Together we figure out how to do it. 
Day by day. 
On our faith and our prayers. 

If you're wondering how someone does it, 
show up and listen. 

Rejoice in hope, 
be patient in tribulation, 
be constant in prayer. 
Romans 12:12