Just a little bit of guns & dresses

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Dear Brother

I process a lot by writing.  Today a very dear friend lost his battle today and I can't sleep.  I have about 2 billion thoughts running through my mind.  Through my heart.  So here I am.  I have so many things that I am thinking, wondering, hashing out, but for now this is all I've got.

Dear Brother,
This is just so surreal.  You and Royall were, are and will always be my first two brothers.  I remember when I met you for the very first time.  I think you were about 4 or 5 and were already sporting some kind of sassy tude.  We were on Dewees.  I still picture you with that blond hair and dark skin.  You truly were one of the most precious kids I have ever seen.  There are so many things I wish that I could have told you.  And I hope in some way that I did.  The two most important are these.  1) I love you.  So. Much.  More than you would ever and could ever know.  You have a piece of my heart forever.  2) Thank you.  Thank you for making me break the rules more times than I'd have liked.  Especially when we tried to sabotage some of Margaret's dates...  You always knew I was a rule following wuss and you tried your best to break me of that.  Thank you for giving me a glimpse into drag racing.  Every car ride was a small glimpse into Nascar for me.  Really.  We all know that you could tear up some tread.  Thank you for teaching me incredible hand eye coordination.  Throwing Mike N Ike's into Margaret's nice ceiling light fixture for a few years  will forever be one of my favorite childhood memories... Thank you for putting me in a deer stand for the first time.  Teaching me to shut up and listen up in a tree.  I will never forget screaming the words to "Hot Blooded" in your truck one several occasions.  Or driving your unwilling little self to tutoring at Dot's.  Or watching you drink a six pack of Mt. Dew or seltzer water in one sitting.  You are the only person that can make me so mad one minute and I will love you the next.  I never knew how you could do it.  Well, actually we all know you just flash that lil smile and get what you want:)  Never had been attacked with a bull whip before you.  Or convinced to drop in on a skate ramp until you.  My tail bone still thanks you for that.  Thank you for the love of most of my hobbies.  I blame you for my deep seeded wanting of 4 wheelers.  I can clear as day see us hauling butt down the train road on those four wheelers, hitting every single puddle possible.  For making me watch School of Rock way too many times.  It made me want to learn guitar.  You introduced me to ghetto rap.  Car rides with you were never dull.  For many, many reasons.  You made me watch Blow with Johnny Depp.   And I still have no comment.  I will never watch wedding crashers or duck dynasty without thinking of you.  Thank you for all of the boat rides we have logged.  Most of which were probably when sitting, stranded in our old boat.  Awaiting rescue.  You and Roy took me on my first off shore fishing trip. Thank you for always confirming my hatred of Crocs.  I hereby forgive you for wearing them.

Most of all- Thank you for being you.  You are and forever will be one of the best.  Behind your deep, husky voice, was tender, sweet and huge heart.  You had a gift of making everybody feel like their best friend.  You were a special person to so many.  You encouraged me in more ways than you know.  You changed my heart Rob Shore.  Forever.  Growing up, I always thought I would be the one to teach you, but you managed to one up me once again.  I don't get it, and I probably won't for a long time, but I know you are relieved.  You have run a race that so many couldn't have.  You had real courage.  I listened to your voice mails today and even in the hospital you were cheering me on.  I will forever cherish our cheesy jokes and terrible e cards.  You loved people.  You loved me.  And you did it well.  You continue to amaze me.  Seriously- you are the only person I know that can go into the hospital for an extended stay and land one heck of a girlfriend.  You got talent:)  I'm going to miss you.  A whole lot.  Without you, Roy and Marg, I don't know if I would have met Jesus like I did.  Never would have thought a road trip to the Outer Banks in 9th grade would be the start of my faith.  I wouldn't have met Jesus.  Or Roy D. Mercer....  You could talk me into or out of anything.  I will forever cherish our talks in the hospital.  Wilds and I crashed the family dinner tonight and I am so glad we did.  Never thought I would ever be standing in there with the fam under those circumstances, but I think you would have been proud.  I broke Lent once again for you...  Honestly, seeing Royall tonight made me so proud of you two.  I love how much y'all love each other.  It does this heart so good.  You were a good brother.  You are a beloved friend.

I know I'm not ready to say good bye yet.  But I must. I am still trying to sort this out, but I know one day that I will.  One day it will make sense.  One day I will have a peace about it.  Thank you for being ever so faithful and for being vulnerable with me.  I will remember it forever.  Thank you for being my friend.  Thank you for teaching me.  Thank you for just being yourself all of the time.  You my brother are one of a kind.  Tonight I can't say good bye, but I will say until next time.  Every time I am on the water or in the woods I will think of you.  My friend. My dear brother.  I love you.  You will forever be my brother.  Forever a fighter.  You will ALWAYS be my hero.  Love you long time my friend.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

box it up

Worst case of hoarders I've encountered thus far. 
But it was clean.  And that is worth a million bucks to me...

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Little homecoming

This morning, my huddle at St. A's was cancelled because we have our women's retreat this weekend. I usually have a pretty packed Wednesday, but today had some rather huge chunks of freedom due to my first inspection not being until 1.  So I did something different.  Let me back track.  Yesterday I spent and hour in Dicks Sporting Goods.  Looking for cool coaching stuff.  Did i mention that I am coaching a middle school girls soccer team?  I know what you are thinking. Just don't worry about it.  It will be just like when I was in middle school...  Dear Lord I hope not..  Any ways, I ran into an old friend from the church that I used to go to.  Eastbridge. 

Here is a little back story for you people- I went to Eastbridge four like 3-4 years while I was in college.  It was my first real church home.  I was basically the only college person, unless Sam Joyner and a few others were home for Xmas break.  Basically I was surrounded by extremely nice people.  It was the first time I had a real church family etc.  It was a small church, so if you had a beating heart then basically you were doing something.  I learned what it was like to be an actual active church member.  You didn't serve out of obligation.  You served out of love and willingness to help.  It's where I learned about intergenerational relationships.  I met some of the kindest people there.  Some of my dearest friendships were made there.  I learned to pray out loud (it was a very large accomplishment for me), I played guitar in front of other people for the first time, and I learned how to basically be seeking after the Lord.  After a few years, I guess you could say I was ready to fly the nest and really felt called to St. Andrews.  It was really hard leaving there for many reasons.  It was my home.  Not just the church, but the people.

So in the middle of Dicks, I got way overly sentimental (Internally of course) and did not want this friendly meeting to end.  Have you ever had encounters like that?  I had so many people to ask about.  I probably could have talked to this sweet woman for the next 2 weeks.  All of these nostalgic feelings kept flooding in.  The best feeling was that they had not forgotten about me (Extremely self focused I know, but I was all the more relieved).  I left there thinking that it would do this heart good to stop in one day. 

One day being today:)  My Wednesday huddle was cancelled and I happen to now that every single Wednesday at 9am, Mrs. Esther has her prayer time at Eastbridge followed by bible study.  So I went.  I was kind of nervous at first.  In fact, I almost didn't go in.  When I left, I never really got to say goodbye.  I just kind of stopped going.  So when I opened the big double doors, all of the familiarities came flooding in.  I popped in the office to say hey.  I made my little mini coffee at the kitchen and headed down the hall.  (If you have read any of the Mitford books- I was totally having some kind of literary flashbacks).  I felt like the prodigal daughter coming home for a quick visit (A little dramatic I know, but it's who I am..)  Then I went in.  There they were.  The familiar faces that I used to see all of the time.  Sweet Mrs. Esther with her Bible and her prayer sheet that she makes for everyone.  Just to get to see her was so delightful.  Talk about a prayer warrior.  I had a strong urge to run and tackle her, but since she is a hair older, I went with the long hug.  She pulled up a chair in my old spot and it was just like old times.  Catching up.  I love when you can pick up where you left off.  Just sitting there in the midst of these ladies brought back so many sweet times.  Its so cool for me, because my time at Eastbridge totally equipped me for St. Andrews.  St. Andrews is big. If I hadn't learned how to plug in at Eastbridge then I could totally have fallen through the cracks.  It's funny how things work together to get you other places.  When you don't even realize it at the time.   All in all, today was a very sweet little homecoming experience.  And I hope I don't wait four years more to do it again.


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

I think I've been dumped

Okay, okay, this is a dramatic title.  Sometimes, a little drama is called for.  To make important points. Especially if one of your future husbands is killed in the last minute of the Downton Abbey finale.  Seriously.  I am not okay with this.  As most of you know, Tim Riggins is my all time TV crush.  Texas forever.  Before Tim Riggins, I was never into the whole bad boy, long haired, ex con, football star.  But, he was redeemed.  He has a good heart...  Not to be too psycho here, but if Tim Riggins waltzed into my little office nook and told me he would marry me (or even just date me or really anything) if I moved to Dillon, Texas- I would have been running out of the door.  Clear Eyes, Full hearts. We are talking full on crush here.  I mean, its bad.  Just saying.
Hannah- you may be the only other person who is relating with me at this point.  So finally, I find another show (that is not FNL in the least) that is very watchable.  One that you feel totally involved in except its not real.  Do you get like this?  Don't answer if you don't. Well, Parenthood and Downton have been trying hard to fill my FNL void and it was working.  Until Sunday night.  I barely could survive Lady Cybil dying.  Now my first goody two shoes golden boy crush has been axed.  I just couldn't take it.  Especially since he turned Mary nice after winning her heart and saving the entire Downton estate.  I mean, he fits my motto of "Make good choices."  He's the golden boy.  Then, hours after welcoming a new heir of his own to Downton he crashes and dies.  What makes matters way worse?  It was his fault.  He and Lady Cybil chose to leave the show.  Rude.  They wanted to pursue bigger and better things.  Ain't nobody got time for that.  Seriously?  Why would you jump off of the money/popularity train of Downton Abbey before it reaches the station?  I love Matthew Crawley, but he will not likely be the next Brad Pitt.  He will be starring in Jane Austin movies.  He's just too sweet.  The show has put him on the map.  I just hate when actors leave something before its finished.  Plus, now his baby momma is left in the lurch.  I feel like I too have been dumped.  So much for liking the good guys...

Now we have to wait for season 4....

I found this cool article by the writer of Downton about the actors leaving etc.

Thursday, February 14, 2013


I wish I were about to write about U2's song, Pride.  But, alas, I am not.  This may come as an utter, unexpected, tragic shock to y'all (as it did to me), but I have a tee tiny confession.  I have pride.  There I said it.  We are all done here.  I wish. 

Last night, standing in a friend's kitchen, probably complaining about something and hoping for some justification in my thoughts, I was very gently made aware that I may have a minute amount of pride.  Okay, it was never classified as minute, but I am just trying to justify my situation here.  My ears are burning right now as I type this.  I'm thinking that could be that minute amount of pride that is bubbling to the surface...  I'll be honest here.  As bad as this may sound- I've never actually thought that I had any pride.  I'm talking the self protective, insecure kind.  Not the good, healthy, enthusiastic kind.  Yes, I have a dollop of the bad kind. I googled pride and I am going with my dear friend WIKI's secondary definition.  This one I will receive.  WIKI says "Pride can be described as a disagreement with the truth."  Yeah. I think I've got that one.  It's amazing that I have made it this far, completely oblivious to this little fact.  Gosh my ears are on fire.  It's funny that on the eve of Valentines it reared it's ugly little head.  I am usually pretty easy going, go with the flow.  But this past week, I had a horrible shot of indecisiveness, with which I tried to chase down with insecurity.  Don't get me wrong- I am one of the most insecure people that I know.  But, often times, I will mask my pride with insecurity.  I am not sure if this is making sense at all, but ain't nobody got time to figure that out.  Back to my story.  So I got invited to do something really fun.  On Valentines.  With cool married people.  People that I love.  At first, I was all about it.  Then as the time got closer, rain man started over analyzing and it just went down hill.  So, I chose the most healthy solution.  Bail.  (I am aware this is not a good solution, in case you are wondering).  I started thinking all of these dumb little thoughts.  What if they were just inviting me because they got an extra ticket?  Or they are just being nice? I mean, its Valentines, why would they invite me?  So I started thinking worse.  What if they don't really like me/want to hang out with me?  No idea how one's train of thought can jump from one end to the other like this, but I need to figure out how to cash in because I am the master of this.  Those insecure thoughts are just a symptom.  A symptom to what you ask?  Here is the nitty gritty truth ( I am now sweating and will probably pass out right after this).  The truth is that deep down I was/am petrified of being labelled.  What?  This is confusing I know.  This is what I live with everyday.  I had this deep, down, secret fear of being labelled as one of the single people... Why?  I do not know. I mean, its a scientific fact.  I am not married.  Therefore, clinically (or something) I am single.  It's not like I am the lone single person in Charleston County.  I mean get a grip woman.  But, for some reason, I feel much better, just never saying, acknowledging or thinking about it.  I have some sort of shutdown factor here.  Fear of embarrassment or failure or something. Or all of the above.  I believed a dumb lil lie about myself somewhere (why can I not be immune to this..). This is how I deal with a lot of different facets.  Yeah, it's really worked for me.... It's only taken 27 whole years to figure it out..  But, it is a fact.  Okay.  I have this little self protection safety mechanism that just does its thing.  Half the time I am not even aware.  I'm not writing this thing because it is Valentines Day.  I am not anti.  In fact, I have had a darn good day actually and it's only going to get better while rocking out to Grace Potter.  (Thanks to Tyler for talking me back into it..)  But, it makes me highly uncomfortable promoting singleness or anything of that nature. I mean, I break out in an internal rash or something, because I would rather die than sit around talking about singleness.  And that would be my pride.  Boom.  So that's what I'm going to be working on this season of Lent. 

Now I'll go the corner and die...

Just pretend we never had this lil convo..
Happy Valentines Day?


Wednesday, February 6, 2013

My People

Last Sunday I got to hear a really great sermon @ St. Andrews.  There were a ton of really great parts to it, but two of them really stuck out to me.  So here we go.

1) Gamers.  Rob Sturdy has called you out.  UNPLUG the dang thing.  Put down the headset.  Throw away the red bull and the cheezits.  Get out of your gamer chair and go outside.  It's time to join the world. I feel like "a whole new world" should be blaring right now.  I'm not talking all gamers.  I like to zone out every once in a while also.  But, if that is your "social time"  you may need an intervention.  Just saying.

2) Community.  We all need it.  Yes, you.  We all do.  I have known that I need people for quite a while now, but I learned something new on Sunday.  In each of us, there is something that only another can bring out. The more we share between us, the more we see God in our lives.  We need to live in community.  It's the only way to know God and to enjoy God. This really witnessed to me because just in the last few months I have realized some things about myself that I don't know that I would have if dear friends hadn't spoken them out.  I am the first one to admit that I can get down on myself faster than T Swift can write a hit break up song.  You see, when we aren't operating in community we are isolated.  When you are isolated you are in a vacuum and you tend to not see the whole picture.  You hear things, you see things and you believe things.  Things that aren't from God.  You have a higher chance to hear something other than the Lord's voice.  We can believe lies so easily.  I'm talking little, tee tiny lies.  The most minuscule lie can cast me adrift so quickly.  If I were not in community- this would be a not so good situation.  I'm not saying that being in community makes me never fall of the path.  I'm saying that community slaps me right back on the path.  Back to my point.  Just lately I have had some very dear friends really encourage me and they probably don't even know it.  I don't mean that they tell me that I'm great and that my hair looks nice (although, the new doo has gotten some good feedback...  I'll take it).  These encourager's have really encouraged me.  In my faith.  In my job.  In my life.  In my gifts.  Internally, I tend to tell myself that I don't have that much to offer.  Or that I'm not really gifted in this or that.  Or I will become unsure of where I stand.  I totally shut down and withdraw.  If I kept believing that, then I wouldn't even begin to know what the Lord has for me.  Instead, I am encouraged to press into the Lord.  I am encouraged to operate in the gifts the Lord has given me. Sometimes, they will tell me something that I was even aware that it was a possibility for me.   It's so crazy to me that I can think something, but as soon as someone dear to me tells me otherwise- then I actually believe it.  I actually will feel like its true.  Then (after way to much self analyzation) I begin to BELIEVE and KNOW it.  That is truly one of the best gifts that I have ever received.  To have people affirming and praying for you is so life giving.  I really can't even put it into words.  I'm not saying its all butterflies and rainbows from here on out.  It's not.  Sometimes they enlighten me on things that need a little work. Or a whole lot of work.  But, its ok.  Its a process.  A process that I never want to lose.

Also, there are aspects of the grace of God that you can only see through others.  So true.   I have seen more compassion and just straight up love from seeing it in other people.  Just the love shown to me has been eye opening.  We can see God's love in different ways operating in different people.  Seeking Christ is not a one woman show.  I just couldn't do it.  So tonight I am thankful for my people.  People that I love.  That I can share anything with.  People that really do life with me.  I whole heartedly pray that each of you has some way, shape or form of that. If you don't- tell me.  I will keep praying.  Put yourself out there.  The reward is far better than the risk.

Alright, that's all I've got tonight.

Love you long time,


Tuesday, February 5, 2013


As many of you know, I moved this past week(more to come later).  Said farewell to my home of the past 3.5 years.  The Girl Palace.  Many of you have probably spent a night or two at the palace or you once lived there.  The Girl Palace wasn't just a house.  It was the people.  A gathering place for many people that I love.  I was so lucky to have gotten to live with the many different girls of the palace (this is coming across like a brothel, but I promise it wasn't.. as far as I know).  We have seen many changes, seasons, parties, viewings of Baby Mama  and said bye to a lot of brides at the Palace.  So here's to you Girl Palace.  Thanks for the friends, the fun times and the roof over our heads.  Here is a little farewell tribute:)
 Chris Simon and his hair.
 The GP went to fashion week.. 
Lulie.  Our first GP bride:)
The original Girl Palace:)