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Thursday, January 24, 2013

Longing for God

"If I crave happiness, I will receive misery.  If I crave to be loved, I will receive rejection.  If I crave significance, I will receive futility.  If I crave control, I will receive chaos.  If I crave reputation, I will receive humiliation.  But if I long for God and His wisdom and mercy, I will receive God and wisdom and mercy."

-David Powlison, "The Sufficiency of Scripture to Diagnose and Cure Souls" JBC 23:2 (2005) 12.

Thankful Thursday

1656) Watching Bjorn coach a basketball game - it was fun seeing him be such an adult.
1657) The hilarity of Game Weekend including (but not limited to) Penny walking around the bleachers at a high school basketball game after escaping from my purse...
1658)...Mark making his QuizBoard name "Dingleberries" so that everyone's phone always says "You are playing with Dingleberries..."
1659)...Svea's constant baby babble...
1660)...and Hannah and Svea vying for attention. :-)
1661) Family who are friends and friends who are family.  It is hard to come to Game Weekend and not be reminded of how blessed I am.
1662) Arlene's massages.
1663) Lazy Saturdays sitting around in sweats, reading magazines and listening to Svea chatter.
1664) Beautiful Hanson family photos - Aly's talented hand at photography and 3 lovely people who I love deeply.  Choked me up!
1665) Telling stories about LP with people who grew up there.
1666) Watching the 1993 FBC Christmas Pageant.  Pure hilarity.
1667) Seeing Laurel & Warren's faces for a few sweet fleeting minutes.
1668) Penny snuggling around my neck and face all night - she cuddles with me so rarely and I love it when she does!!
1669) Family & friends who love doing the same things - games, lounging, football, food - so easy to spend time together!
1670) Telling stories and laughing with Chinwe on my drive home - always good for my heart.
1672) Seeing a chronically ill child being cared for by caring, involved parents - she already suffers so much, it is good to see her being loved and well cared for!
1674) I am thankful for a warm bed on a cold night.
1676) Sweet FB message from Em saying that she felt like I should have been there when she was hanging out with Cassie, Aly and all of their adorable babies.  So thoughtful.
1677) Started Game of Thrones - already hooked!  I love good writing.
1678) A mom who catered - so helpful when planning to cook for 25 for a whole weekend!
1681) Danae saying she would sit in a dark room all weekend if it meant she would be let out long enough to eat my cooking. :-)  So sweet.
1682) The slow burn of a good workout.
1683) Grocery shopping with Kristy - so nice to have the company & the help (especially when she picked up everything I dropped!)
1684) Good phone with Julie - having her ask several questions I have been waiting/needing to be asked.
1685) 3 lasagnas, 50 enchiladas, 3lb pasta salad & 2lb Hell's Kitchen black beans = 5+ hours of putzing in my kitchen which means a very happy evening for me!!

Humpday Listday: T5 Reasons I am Ob.sessed. with Eddie Redmayne Right Now

(Oops....a little late with this.  I just now realized it is Wednesday and it technically isn't even Wednesday anymore!  I was busy/distracted all day by friends joining me for breakfast, a tough workout at the gym and an afternoon/evening full of grocery shopping/cooking to get ready to feed 25 people at a winter getaway this coming weekend.  Oh, and, listening to Eddie Redmayne for about an hour and a half.  LOVE.  Speaking of Eddie...let me try to pinpoint where my obsession lies...)

5) His voice: He's British.  I've always loved boys with accents.
4) His face: I haven't fallen for very many ginger complexions in my life, but he is a beautiful, beautiful man.
3) His boyishness: I think his interview on Ellen sort of sealed the deal for me.  He seemed positively delighted to be there and he sat with one leg tucked up under him.  Informal.  Comfortable.  Adorable.
2) His role: Of all the characters in Les Mis, I resonate with Eponine the most, so I guess it makes sense that we would fall for the same guy.
1) His voice: Have you listened to "Empty Chairs at Empty Tables" yet today?  Unbelievable.  I've listened to it six times in the last two hours and I'm still nowhere near sick of it.  

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Thankful Thursday

(For an explanation of Thankful Thursday, go here).

1621) Being given a graciously easy assignment on a day when I felt not-so-hot.
1622) Having my cute little Trisomy 21 kid with severe nurse anxiety smile and wave goodbye to me.  Made. My. Day.
1623) Two more patients expressed disappointment when they found out I either wasn't staying all night or that I wasn't coming back tomorrow.  Always such a nice compliment.
1624) Gretta is for sure coming to Mexico!!!!!!!!!!!  YAY!  I am getting more and more excited for that week.
1625) Getting to work and seeing that the secretary had written "Eva Mendes" in the "Nurse" slot on all of my patient's doors- we were laughing so hard!  I know the resemblance is striking...
1627) After emailing Pacem's phone # to my fam so they could get a hold of me in an emergency, Hannah called to ask if "just missing me" could be considered an emergency. :-)
1629) Turning off my radio as I turn the corner into Pacem's driveway, entering the silence and feeling that first inkling of peace start to creep in.
1630) Laying down within the first 10 minutes of being in my hermitage and waking up 3 hours later feeling rested and refreshed.
1631) Going to bed at 7.  Sleeping for 13 hours.
1632) Wise men with deep biblical insight on how Scripture applies to very practical things like messy relationships and depression.
1633) Catching tiny glimpses of God's redemptive work in things I have considered disasters or hardships in my life.
1634) Waking at 3am and deciding to get up and have tea with Jesus.  I am thankful he woke me and met me in that early morning hour.
1635) The beauty of a winter sunrise over a frozen lake.
1636) Bread, cheese & fruit.  Coffee & tea.  A rocking chair.  Silence.  Simplicity.  Jesus.  Pacem.
1637) Getting a small sense of "writing energy" as I wrote my Personal Statement for my Westminster app.  I don't think I've felt writing energy in almost two years now.  I know life's not all about emotions and feelings, but it WAS nice to feel a touch of that enjoyment again.
1638) A helpful reminder that God's MAIN concern for my life is not a) that I never work weekends again, b) that I remain "vested" at Mayo, c) that I never have to say "no" to something because I can't afford it, or d) that I be as comfortable as possible in all ways at all times and, therefore, these should not be MY main concerns as I consider school.
1639) Walking all the way to the main house without falling on the ice - a miracle indeed!
1640) "I am created by God.  I am his offspring; he is my Father.  I have sinned, but like the father of the prodigal son, my Father has pursued me.  He sent Jesus to be the sacrifice for my sin and redeem me from the grave and the Evil One.  Now I live for the One who died for me but is alive.  I fight against sin through the power of God's Spirit, and I look forward to the day when sin and suffering are over and I see Jesus face to face."  So thankful this is my story.
1641) The Pacem staff.  There is something so serene about every interaction with them.
1642) Seeing Penny after a long weekend away.  I love that little face.
1643) My mom's laugh as she gives me tips on traveling internationally and I remind her I was last out of the country six months ago...
1645) Carrots and hummus.  My new favorite yum.
1646) My last practice meeting!  Yay!  I have loved the experience but I am also glad to be done for a while.
1647) Listening to myself speak and direct at the meeting and realizing how different I am than a year ago in how I interact with the leadership at work and how much I understand about how the system works.
1648) Having my patient's family member challengingly tell me I had big shoes to fill at the start of my shift, having him test me repeatedly and try to push my buttons and then telling me at the end of the shift that I filled them and then some.
1649) Penny's tongue.  Some days it just slays me.
1651) Step class!  I had forgotten how much I love it.  What a great workout.
1653) Pedicures.  I have THE BEST nail place.  Seriously.  The best.
1654) Trying out 3 new things for dinner, being super uncertain if any of it would turn out (since I sort of made all 3 things up) and having it all be DELICIOUS.
1655) Knowing that no matter how hard I try to imagine the depth of God's affection for me, I still come nowhere close to understanding the reality of it.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Humpday Listday: T5 Movies I Could Watch Over and Over and Over....

If I could only watch 5 movies for the rest of my life, I would choose...

1) The Shawshank Redemption: This has been my all-time favorite movie for 10+ years.  I could watch it any time of any day in any mood.  It's my go-to movie when I'm sick because I can lay with my eyes closed and "watch" every scene in my mind while I listen to the dialogue (one time, in college, I put in Castaway when I wanted to lay down and close my eyes....TERRIBLE idea!!  I had to keep "peeking" to see what on earth was going on during the unending silence).  For the first time in a LONG time, this has recently been challenged as my all-time favorite movie by....

2) Les Miserables: I haven't quite made this an official #1 just because it hasn't had the longevity yet to prove itself endlessly re-watchable, but chances are GOOD.  I came hours away from seeing it in the theater three times in eight days (backed out of the third showing at the last-minute due to a day that ended up being busier than expected).  I don't buy many DVDs but I guarantee I will be getting this one the day it is released.

3) Elf: It makes me happy every. single. time.  Also, it fills both the "comedy" and the "holiday" spots on this list.

4) How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days: Fav rom-com.  I'm actually not a HUGE rom-com fan, but I could watch this one every day and never get sick of it.

5) The Lord of the Rings Trilogy: It's epic.  And, let's be honest, I'm still a little in love with Aragorn (although I DID recently get rid of the Aragorn doll my roommates got me in college....baby steps!).  

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Thankful Thursday

(For an explanation of Thankful Thursday, go here).

1581) Long, fun 4-day weekends to recover from long, exhausting work weeks.
1582) Green olives.  On a hamburger.  With swiss cheese.  Yum.
1583) The way Penny burrows her nose into...anything...
1585) The darkness of the cave at Angela's house.  Best. Sleep. Ever.
1586) Swimming with my new waterproof Ipod - I have always loved the pool and now I love it even more when I can engage my mind, too!
1588) On days when it is hard for me to come up with 5 gratitude items, I look at my patients and remember to be thankful for things like being able to walk.
1589) And talk.
1590) And work.
1592) Dad getting tickets to the play-off game on Saturday....SO EXCITED!!!!!
1596) Les Mis - I'm thankful for everything about that movie.  I am thankful that it is well done and for the skill of the actors - Jackman, Hathaway and Redmayne in particular.
1597) I am thankful for the story of grace and justice told so well.
1599) I am thankful music speaks to my soul in a way few other things can.
1600) Thankful for the opportunity to go to bed at 8p!!
1601) A lovely, lazy morning (because I woke up at 5!) for drinking coffee, reading, putting together the next S&L Newsletter and snuggling with Penny
1602) Professor Blastoff - I think that podcast has made me laugh out loud - HARD - more than any other piece of media ever has.
1603) Good books on long car rides.
1604) The opportunity to go to a Vikes/Packers play-off game with my Dad and sisters.
1605) My parents' pure joy every time they get to see us.
1606) Penny's nose pressed up against my book - makes it hard to read but it is so darn cute.
1607) Clouds that look like mountains on the horizon
1608) Girls who come over to watch the Downton Abbey premiere - so fun!
1609) Knowing I have a solitude retreat quickly approaching - my heart feels so rotten and it is nice to know there is time set aside for a little reckoning!
1610) The evidences of grace in a little poodle - she seems to love me no matter what I do or say.
1611) Good writing.
1612) Beautiful sunrises over downtown Rochester.
1613) Penny's "I'm hungry" dance.
1614) Four weeks from now I'll be in Thailand!!!!!!!!!
1616) Zumba!  Went to my first class today and learned all sorts of moves my poor Baptist body never knew how to do!
1618) The joy I get from putzing in my kitchen
1620) Girls who come over for an impromptu dinner and who fill my home with laughter.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Humpday Listday: T5 Podcasts I am Listening to Right Now

I listen to a LOT of podcasts.  Most of them are good.  A couple probably need to go.  These five are my favs.  In order.
  1.  Professor Blastoff : This podcast makes me laugh harder and longer than any other podcast (or any other form of media I have ever encountered, for that matter...).  PB is hosted by three comedians (Tig Notaro, Kyle Dunnigan and David Huntsberger) who discuss topics ranging from science to philosophy to religion to....just about anything else.  They don't love Jesus, so their discussion of religion (and most natural phenomenons) are decidedly humanistic, and yet I find even those discussions offer me great insight into how non-believers think (having grown up in a beautifully Jesus-saturated sub-culture).  I would recommend listening from Episode 1 as much of their humor is generated from running jokes that sprout organically from their conversations.  Oh man.  They are so, so, so funny.  The longer I listen, the harder I laugh.  
  2. This American Life: TAL holds a special place in my heart as the program that first hooked me on podcasting (prior to TAL, I listened to nothing but music in my car....now I don't think I have listened to music in my car in over two years).  If you like stories/story-telling and if you find people fascinating, you will most likely enjoy this podcast.  Each week they have a theme and they present stories surrounding that theme.  There is an occasional dud, but for the most part I find it fascinating.
  3. How to Do Everything: Funny, random, light-hearted, brief - this is one of my go-to "driving around town" podcasts.  It is easy to follow even in the small, interrupted snippets that occur while running errands (Professor Blastoff and TAL are not as easily digested in small snippets considering their more conversational nature).  And I have actually learned a thing or two from Mike and Ian!  So I guess I could add "practical" to my list of adjectives, although that might be stretching it a bit....
  4. Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me!: A weekly news quiz show.  Light-hearted, mildly funny and sort of helps me stay up-to-date (in a very superficial, undetailed way) on some of the political and pop-culture news that I gloss over in my magazines.  This is my other go-to while driving around town.
  5. Solid Food Media sermons by R.W. Glenn: I used to listen to quite a few sermon podcasts (Bethlehem Baptist/John Piper, David Platt, Tullian Tchividjian, Rick Gamache, and Kevin Barnhart [from my church in Rochester] among others), but I have gotten out of that habit in recent years.  Although I still keep some of those updated on my ipod, the one I find myself constantly going to first is R.W. Glenn's sermons.  I was first introduced to him at the 2012 Desiring God conference and his skill and insight while preaching the Word has been good for my heart.