Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Words my heart needed to hear...

The fear of getting hurt again has only led you to hurt yourself. Come out now. Come out while there’s still some living left to be done. This person who hurt you doesn’t deserve to still dictate your life decisions. Your discipline and dedication to structure is an illusion. You’re still powerless because you’re letting certain incidents define your life. If you really want to be in control again, you have to learn to let go again. It’s the only way. -The Fear Of Getting Hurt Again by Ryan O'Connell

...and words that describe how my heart feels right now.

If life can be made more beautiful with generosity, and care, and affection, there is no reason to stifle it or keep it in some confused concept of moderation. With generosity, there can always be more.

I know that all of these things make me better. And I know that I am better when I am around you, and that the real goal is to learn how to apply these lessons and desires and streaks of unabashed confidence to every aspect of my life. I should be just as generous with friends, just as confident at work, just as forgiving of my daily stresses as I am when you are with me. Because that, I think, is the greatest gift we can ever give another person: To see that life can be lived more beautifully and more honestly, and that you don’t even need to be in love to do it. -The Way I Am Around You by Chelsea Fagan

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Monday, January 28, 2013

{Quote of the Week.}

“You look invincible,' my mother said one night. 
I loved these times, when we seemed to feel the same thing. 
I turned to her, wrapped in my thin gown, and said:I am.”-Alice Sebold
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Thursday, January 24, 2013

Right now.

[Munich. January 22. 2013.]
I am happy.

Happier than I have been in months, seasons even, maybe.

I want to take a second to document this feeling.

That head-over-heels, smitten kitten, fresh air is like a brand new beginning, smile at everyone you see, kind of feeling.

It's days like this that I realize, even though it may be fleeting, this kind of happiness is worth every second of sadness.

It makes up for it all.

Doesn't it always?

And that is the way life seems to go.
But this is just a reminder that it's always worth it.
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Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Joy is contagious.

One of my favorite things in the entire world is seeing a groom's face when they first see their bride. If someone were to capture those few seconds in a bottle, I'd buy a lifetime supply. Such raw love is rarely shown, and I love it so.

Another one of my favorite things? New dads. (Old dads, too.) Of course new mamas are like angels on Earth, but mamas never cease to amaze us daily, right? But dads don't generally get as much attention as their new bundles of joy or their gorgeous baby mamas.

My cousin Michael and his wife are having a baby and man oh man, are we excited to have a new babe join our quirky family.

He's writing his experience on his new blog 40 Weeks to Fatherhood. It's hilarious, honest, and so flippin' sweet.

Also, this exists. 

And this post made me laugh for a good twenty minutes.

...and because I can't help myself...this.
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Monday, January 21, 2013

{Quote of the Week.}

“On our path through this life, we are blessed with meeting special people who help cure the loneliness. Our hearts recognize them almost instantly. This is because our souls were together before this life…and will perhaps be together after this life has passed.” -Yasmin Mogahed 
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Thursday, January 17, 2013

As the snow keeps falling.

[Munich. January 2013.]

The snow keeps falling, falling, falling here in Munich. The city goes on despite the inches that continue to accumulate each hour. Groceries must be bought, meetings must be attended. Life continues.

I love the snow. It's not like Kansas snow. It's much more powdery and it's a relief to brush it off my car with a mere swipe and not have to chip away a layer of ice beneath, as it so often goes in Kansas winters. It's the kind of snow depicted in picture books. It's the most beautiful snow I have ever experienced.

And so I am happy it continues falling, falling, falling.


I am -- after much time -- starting to feel more confident in my decision to come to Munich. New job opportunities are popping up and I have started meeting many wonderful people.

After so many months, I think I've found my place in this beautiful city. Or at least I'm finding my way more and more each day.

For this I am oh, so very thankful.

And of course -- after all this time -- I still wake up every morning feeling blessed to be on this amazing adventure.

P.S. Thank you for your support in helping find my friend. Keep praying! Keep spreading the word!
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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Please, please help.

Dear friends near & far, my heart is breaking after hearing of the disappearance of my friend Daniel Gliksten. If you could please keep spreading the word and praying for his safe return, it would mean so much.

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Monday, January 14, 2013

{Quote of the Week.}

[Kew Gardens. London. 12/30/2012.]
"In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer.
And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger – something better, pushing right back."-Albert Camus, The Stranger
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Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Dear ________,

[Munich. November 2011.]

Munich... you're the bee's knees, ya know that? I just wish you weren't so darn far away from my friends and family back in the U-S-of-A. Hopefully you all will meet eventually. You'd hit it off great, I just know it.

Christmas 2012... you came out of nowhere and left me in a whirlwind of unfinished business. I wasn't able to send out a single Christmas card! Or presents, really! And next year, Christmas 2013, I'll be home. And most importantly, I'll be prepared.

Skype... I've told you once and I'll tell you a thousand times more: THANK YOU. 

Friends and Family... Most of my days are spent with moments of "oooh's" and "ahhh's" and, of course, a whole lot of "oh, if only they were here to see/smell/taste/experience this with me!" It's quite a conundrum, really. So if you could just hop your cabooses right on over that'd be great.

German keyboards... UGH. That is all. Reallz. (get it?!)

Candy Crush on iPhone... you are ruining my life. 

Paulo Coehlo... I just finished a few of your books and must say, Eleven Minutes was my favorite thus far. Holy guacamole, some parts just fit along with my life like a soundtrack. (Minus the prostitution and all that jazz. Rather how the main character up and leaves to a foreign country. It captures so many of my feelings perfectly.) So thank you, dear sir. Your words are like medicine for the soul.
It isn’t easy being far from my family and from the language in which I can express all my feelings and emotions, but from now on, whenever I feel depressed, I will remember that funfair. If I had fallen asleep and suddenly woken up on a roller coaster, what would I feel? 
Well, I would feel trapped and sick, terrified of every bend, wanting to get off. However, if I believe that the track is my destiny and that God is in charge of the machine, then the nightmare becomes something thrilling. It becomes exactly what it is, a roller coaster, a safe, reliable toy, which will eventually stop, but while the journey lasts, I must look at the surrounding landscape and  whoop with excitement.

Jerkface... enough is enough. 

Phil Dunphy... you are giving my love Raymond a run for his money. Seriously. I love you.

January... please be kind. And exciting! But mostly kind.

You... thanks for all of your support and messages. You have no idea how much you have helped in my healing.
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Monday, January 7, 2013

{Quote of the Week.}

Now is your time. Become, believe, try. Walk closely with people you love, and with other people who believe that God is very good and life is a grand adventure. Don't spend time with people who make you feel like less than you are. Don't get stuck in the past, and don't try to fast-forward yourself into a future you haven't yet earned. Give today all the love and intensity and courage you can, and keep traveling honestly along life's path. -Shauna Niequist
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Sunday, January 6, 2013

Happy New Year!

[London. Jan. 4.2013]

“Hope - 
Smiles from the threshold of the year to come, 
Whispering 'it will be happier'...” 
Alfred Tennyson.

Happy New Year! 

I spent the last seven days in beautiful London visiting a dear friend of mine. It was exactly what my heart needed after the last months of 2012. Sweet friends and new spaces to explore, that is one of my favorite remedies for curing stomach-inducing, heart-aching anxiety. What a blessing it is to have had both of these things at my fingertips!

I won't be doing a round-up post of 2012, it was one of the harder years, one I'd rather not spend an hour remembering each month. At least not right now.

Instead, I will keep my head up, my heart a bit more protected, and ready to accept what God has planned for 2013 -- though I pray I'm a little bit stronger, more flexible, and trusting in whatever it may be.

I hope you had a lovely time celebrating.

Cheers and with all my love,

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