Thursday, December 27, 2007


It's a strange year. My friends here have blurred the family line to a point that makes it seem silly to even try and distinguish. Friends are the family you choose, right? I'm sitting here on a friend's couch, and this couch is so much more familiar than my mother's couch at this point. I have a key here - I don't have a key to my mother's. So is this home? Is this town home? The state?

Or is home people?

I guess it doesn't really matter enough to spend time defining it. Home, in my world, has become where ever I am loved and cared for, and a place where I don't have to keep my guard up. Right now, that is this house. Is this a permanent home? Obviously not - I don't live here. Is it necessary to have a permanent "home" - a building to go back to that you're always welcome? Obviously not, because I haven't had one for a while. To me, home is people. Yes, in a larger sense it's this town, but this town is nothing but a maze of streets and buildings that are brought to life by the people in it... without them, it would mean nothing.

Without them, home is nothing.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


What a weird year. For the first time in a long time I'm not going to Pennsylvania. Am I okay with this?

Yeah, pretty sure it's fine.

I just get so stressed out this time of year. I only have one part time job right now, and am honestly not sure how I'm going to afford to go home in two days. I am not sure when Christmas turned into a big ball of stress and money problems for me... but I know I'm not the only one in this situation.

The focus just seems so wrong to me. Instead of focusing on friends and family and Jesus, I'm focused on my bank account. What a stressful way to live.

My family is not exchanging gifts this year, and I can't say that I'm disappointed. It will be nice to spend time together and not focus on who got what for who.

This is also the first year I have had to split my time between both parents. I'm definitely not excited about it. My dad's new "family" is nothing but a bunch of strangers to me. I don't know them, and it's going to be weird spending part of my holiday with them. However, he is my dad, and I've just got to try and salvage what little relationship I do have with him - and try really hard to get through it with patience.

On that note, where do you draw the line between including someone in your family and keeping distance? My dad has been dating Jonnie for a year and a half. They live together. But I don't really know her. The extent of my knowledge is pretty much that she was the girl my dad cheated on my mom with. I don't have any reason to like her, and on some levels I feel lik I'm doing pretty well speaking to my dad at this point.

Becca will be coming to visit while I'm there, and I'm definitely pretty pumped about it. I haven't seen her since Nov. 14th and I miss her like crazy! It will be great to spend time with her and all my other friends there.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

From Ben Stein:

I know this is a few years old now, but I stumbled across it again. So well written.

"My confession:

I am a Jew, and every single one of my ancestors was Jewish. And it does not bother me even a little bit when people call those beautiful lit up, bejeweled trees Christmas trees. I don't feel threatened. I don't feel discriminated against. That's what they are: Christmas trees.

It doesn't bother me a bit when people say, 'Merry Christmas' to me. I don't think they are slighting me or getting ready to put me in a ghetto. In fact, I kind of like it. It shows that we are all brothers and sisters celebrating this happy time of year. It doesn't bother me at all that there is a manger scene on display at a key intersection near my beach house in Malibu. If people want a church, it's just as fine with me as is the Menorah a few hundred yards away.

I don't like getting pushed around for being a Jew, and I don't think Christians like getting pushed around for being Christians. I think people who believe in God are sick and tired of getting pushed around, period. I have no idea where the concept came from that America is an explicitly atheist country. I can't find it in the Constitution and I don't like it being shoved down my throat.

Or maybe I can put it another way: where did the idea come from that we should worship Nick and Jessica and we aren't allowed to worship God as we understand Him? I guess that's a sign that I'm getting old, too. But there are a lot of us who are wondering where Nick and Jessica came from and where the America we knew went to.

In light of the many jokes we send to one another for a laugh, this is a little different: This is not intended to be a joke; it's not funny, it's intended to get you thinking.

Billy Graham's daughter was interviewed on the Early Show and Jane Clayson asked her 'How could God let something like this happen?' (regarding Katrina) Anne Graham gave an extremely profound and insightful response. She said, 'I believe God is deeply saddened by this, just as we are, but for years we've been telling God to get out of our schools, to get out of our government and to get out of our lives.
And being the gentleman He is, I believe He has calmly backed out. How can we expect God to give us His blessing and His protection if we demand He leave us alone?'

In light of recent events...terrorists attack, school shootings, etc. I think it started when Madeleine Murray O'Hare (she was murdered, her body found recently) complained she didn't want prayer in our schools, and we said OK.

Then someone said you better not read the Bible in school. The Bible says thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not steal, and love your neighbor as yourself. And we said OK.

Then Dr. Benjamin Spock said we shouldn't spank our children when they misbehave because their little personalities would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem (Dr. Spock's son committed suicide). We said an expert should know what he's talking about. And we said OK.

Now we're asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they don't know right from wrong, and why it doesn't bother them to kill strangers, their classmates, and themselves.

Probably, if we think about it long and hard enough, we can figure it out. I think it has a great deal to do with 'WE REAP WHAT WE SOW.'

Funny how simple it is for people to trash God and then wonder why the world's going to hell. Funny how we believe what the newspapers say, but question what the Bible says. Funny how you can send 'jokes' through e-mail and they spread like wildfire but when you start sending messages regarding the Lord, people think twice about sharing. Funny how lewd, crude, vulgar and obscene articles pass freely through cyberspace, but public discussion of God is suppressed in the school and workplace.

Are you laughing?

Funny how when you forward this message, you will not send it to many on your address list because you're not sure what they believe, or what they will think of you for sending it.

Funny how we can be more worried about what other people think of us than what God thinks of us.

Pass it on if you think it has merit. If not then just discard it... no one will know you did. But, if you discard this thought process, don't sit back and complain about what bad shape the world is in.

My Best Regards.

Honestly and respectfully,

Ben Stein"

Monday, December 10, 2007

Elf yourself.

Betcha didn't know we could do this.

Amnesty International PSA.

New Amnesty International PSA I borrowed from my roommate's blog.

Very bold.

Who's On First?

Tribute to Abbott and Costello:



from the Feministing blog:

Now, I know I've been accused of being anti-abstinence so I want to make something clear: I'm all for abstaining if that's what a gal wants to do. Obviously. But if young women are not having sex because they think they'll be damaged goods, dirty, and "blemished" otherwise--well, then that's pretty f***ing problematic.

As is purity proponents calling themselves counterculture and revolutionary. The pop culture image of women and sexuality is gross, and it is likely to have girls seeking an alternative. But an alternative that judges women just as much (if not more) on their sexuality isn't really an option. A real rebellion would be teaching young women that their sexuality is their own, and that their ability to be a moral person is based on their compassion, kindness, ethics and judgment--not their hymen.

Wow. So call me naive, but the choice I made to abstain was because I wanted to stay pure in God's eyes. It has nothing to do with other people's judgement, or that I'd be "damaged goods" in the eyes of anyone else. What anyone else says doesn't matter - this isn't a decision I made for them. It's not a guilt-ridden decision.

Yes, it is counterculture. There's no way around that. Being nearly 24 years old, I know very few people who have made the decision that I have. I'm proud of it. And I'm proud of my friends that make that decision as well - because everything else in our world tells us not to. It's not a judgement thing, it's a safety thing, a spiritual thing... a choice thing.

Church Shooting in Colorado

From the LA Times:

"FOUR people have been killed and six others wounded in shooting sprees at a missionary school and a church that authorities said appeared to be related.

The gunman in the second incident was killed by a church security guard.

The first shooting occurred about 12.30am on Sunday, when a man wearing a dark coat and a beanie entered the Youth With a Mission dormitory in the Denver suburb of Arvada.

Witnesses said the gunman spoke to several staff members, asking to spend the night. After a 30-minute discussion grew heated, he was turned away. When a staff member asked for help from others to usher him out, he drew a handgun, shot dead a woman and a man and wounded two other staff members.

He fled on foot. As ambulances rushed the wounded away, heavily armed police with dogs searched the snow-covered ground of surrounding neighbourhoods while residents locked their doors and windows. But no trace of the man was found in the area.

More than 12 hours later, a gunman opened fire in the car park of the New Life Church in Colorado Springs. He fatally shot one churchgoer who was in a car and wounded four others. When he tried to enter the crowded church, he was gunned down by a security guard.

A witness said the gunman apparently used a smoke grenade and authorities were investigating the possibility that he may have left several explosives behind. Officials said 7000 people were on the New Life Church grounds at the time of the shooting.

Arvada Police Chief Don Wick said at a news conference on Sunday night that the two shootings could be connected but he did not elaborate. New Life had increased security after hearing of the Arvada shooting, but officials did not say whether church guards normally were armed.

The Youth With a Mission school trains about 300 missionaries a year and is part of an international chain of missionary academies.

After the shooting in Arvada, police searched the area with dogs and checked for footprints in the freshly fallen snow. They warned residents to be on the lookout for the gunman.

Hours later, services began at the Faith Hope Chapel, which houses the missionary school. Christian soft rock piped over loudspeakers in the car park while police cruisers kept watch. Yellow crime-scene tape cordoned off the two-storey school dormitory hundreds of metres away."



Lots of stuff is going through my head lately. Maybe because I just have a lot more time to think than I usually do, maybe because I am slowly changing. Maybe because there is legitimately an exceptional number of things to think about.

I have always heard the old saying that children spell love t-i-m-e. I think that's true of everyone. No one likes to be neglected or made to feel that they're taking a back seat to anything in the life of someone they love. Life happens, and difficult times are inevitable. The past year has taught me a lot about how seemingly small decisions have large consequences, and that how I spend my time tells the people in my life what is most important to me. Forgetting a phone call or lunch date happens. Things come up. But when they do, it tells the other person that they were not what was important to you at that moment, and that can hurt. At least acknowledge that, and don't pretend that forgetting things and not making time is completely innocent, because it isn't.

I have a serious love/hate relationship with change. A big part of me thrives on the excitement of new people, new things, and new opportunities. But as I get older, I find myself craving stability in relationships, work, my family, etc. I am confident in the knowledge that the only constant I will ever truly have in life is the fact that God loves me. The tricky thing about that is that I don't always choose to let Him love me.

I'm not really good at letting go of things. And by things, I mean people. Relationships change, families change, people change, our circumstances change, and sometimes people are in our lives only for a season. And when the season changes, a hole is left in your heart where that person used to be. Sometimes those holes are hard to fill. If it is a parent (father), it is impossible.

I'm terrified and excited about what the next year holds. There are new people in my life that I hope to develop stronger relationships with. I am going to graduate this year, come hell or high water, and I cannot wait to see what God's got in store for me on the other side of my Belmont years, but I've also realized that my life is not on hold until I get that piece of paper. I'm living my life right now, and one year spent "waiting" is one year I will be missing later on.

I am finally happy with myself and my life. It is far from perfect, but I love people and have people that love me. Thank you for being one of them.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Crazy little thing called love...

The title of this alone should make you laugh if you know me. Who the heck is she to talk about relationships??

No one, obviously, I don't know anything. But since for the first time in a long time I'm not revolted by the idea of allowing a man into my life, I've been thinking a lot about them. And being surrounded by couples every day gives me a perpetual reminder of what I don't have in my life.

Some of it, I am okay with missing out on.

My best friend had one of the more telling non-relationships. (Here's your post, B, you know what I'm talking about)... and reminded me of exactly what I don't want in a guy. If he doesn't call, or jump at the chance to spend time with me, or at least act interested in what I have to say, then I deserve better. Pretty basic, right? You'd think.

What is it that makes girls feel like they need to direct guys toward themselves? Girls, we do it constantly, whether we are actually interested in the guy or not. Whether it's with what we wear, what we say, how we approach them, our motives for calling/ texting/ facebooking/ contacting in any way, etc. Basically, we want them to find us interesting.

Maybe that's because that's the way God designed us. We are supposed to be the pursued. Sometimes I think in our desire to be pursued, we become the pursuers, and end up angry or hurt when things don't pan out. No one wins.

Girls, am I wrong? Is this just me?

I'm in the process of letting God take over in that department... because let's face it, I don't even have a track record to damage at this point.

Little bulbs of happiness.

What is it about Christmas lights that puts people in a good mood? The past few weeks have been stressful for me, with being jobless again and car trouble and all, so I decided to spend what little money I have on Christmas stuff.

Prudent, yes? Probably not.

All I can say is that between the abundance of light on my patio, the tree in my living room, and the glow emanating from my bedroom, my mood has improved dramatically. It's hard to be angry when there are little twinkles in every corner.

It's the little things, no?

Anyone made it out to Opryland this year? I need to get out there - it's amazing.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

When I Grow Up....

So what do you do when you what you think you wanted loses its appeal?

I've spent years thinking that what I wanted to do was come to Nashville and run this town. Over the past year priorities have shifted, circumstances have changed, and I now feel like I'm back at square one: What do I want to be when I grow up? Do I really want to claw, scratch and fight my way to the top of an industry that could bottom out in a week's time? Do I love it that much? I don't have an answer to that question anymore.

I took a test when I was in 8th grade - one of those career builder things or something, and it was supposed to tell you what you should be when you grew up.

I was a log roller. Probably a step up from packing up and deciding to be a music big wig.

What shapes our career decisions? I suppose some of it is circumstance... but working in music was a no-brainer for me. It's a passion - I don't know that I'd ever love anything else as much as the music industry. That's one of those things at the top of the list - "things parents never want their children to grow up to be". Maybe we think too much about what other people want us to be, and not about what God wants us to be.

It's strange to feel so unsure of myself - my career path has seemed pretty straight forward to me since I graduated high school. I suppose this is where God reminds me that I don't always know what's best for me, and that sometimes I just need to do what I do and trust him. He'll bring it together.