Sunday, June 30, 2013

Sunday Snippits: the good, bad, & ugly!

Happy Sunday! 

WORDs to chew on: Jesus says, Follow me. Luke 9:51-62 The Message or Luke 9:51-62 NRSV

Recapping the week & jumping into this week with...

GOOD: Life has been restful & celebratory in the month of June. Monday night we enjoyed a night out at the Saint Paul Saints Baseball with a group of good friends. AND in the last minutes of the game the Saints got a homerun & WON! On Tuesday (T) I woke up to a voicemail announcing the birth of my childhood best friends' 2nd baby. Just one day before his mom's b-day & all are happy & healthy! Wednesday was then Tray's b-day & our niece's EJ's 1st b-day! Aunt Juls (& Uncle Z) had a LOT of fun gifting her a tutu! Z & I had a few days off so we cleaned the apartment & took a trip to visit Ma & Pa N. We also got to do several loads of laundry, watch the first 4 or 5 episodes of Downton Abbey season 3, & get new rear struts on Mandela (our car). Oh, AND we brought back our air con unit. Back to work on R & F with some fun outtings to say g'bye to friends moving this weekend. 

The Holy Spirit is moving in new & unknown ways, while scary, nonetheless it is exciting! 

BAD: Our friends are moving! This wave of sadness hovers in the air & enters our souls periodically. We're very excited for everybody's new adventures. We also are blessed with a great community here of people not moving yet because they've just finished their first year of seminary.

UGLY: Over 45,000 people were without power much of last week. I don't believe they fixed all the power outages till last Wednesday. It was a mess to say the least. In our life, the ugly is being restless. We're trying to embrace old hobbies that we had gotten away from doing, so yesterday we went & bought a basketball (this is a hobbies of Z's, not mine). 

THIS WEEK: Today is my cousin Lolo's birthday & my friend RW's ordination day! Our "golden" anniversary is Tuesday! AND the rest of the week is filled with fun wedding festivities for RM & CG.!

SOMETHING TO TRY: And because I think others should try this, we also made some yummy treats like Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding to fill our time.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Friday Foto Fun!

Friday Foto Fun!

Pulled out of the archives, here's a photo of Z & I at our wedding rehearsal dinner (yes, we were on a boat). 2 years ago Z & I were going crazy & having fun with our wedding week.

We had family come to MN as early as the Monday before (it was a Saturday wedding) & had events planned like worship & camp fires & relatives birthday celebrations the whole week long. It was CRAZY, but lots of FUN!

The actual day of was a beautiful 86 degrees out & of course the only people in direct sunlight were our groomsmen. Our friends & family did a wonderful job turning the outside lawn of Bockman Hall into a sanctuary with peacock feathers, bows, & a flower vase for our loved ones who couldn't join us. We danced to the Blues Brothers Train's Marry Me song & enjoyed spending a little bit of time with all the people who had traveled to celebrate with us.        

In lieu of wedding season, remember the love you've witnessed, seen, felt, heard & know that you are loved.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Tuesday Tea Time!


I've missed this time & am glad to be back to share Tuesday Tea Time with you.

To my surprise this quirky animation is from a t-shirt company called Ript Apparel.

Today, as I drink my chai (a mix of powder & a simple Lipton black tea bag) I'm wondering how am I Living, acknowledging the Spirit, and Sparkling?

This random design for a t-shirt seems to bring Life, Spirit, & Sparkle to life. I'm sure there are more inspiring photos out there, but this was quirky & involved dancing tea, happy tea bags, & singing (or screaming - you choose) spoons.

Recently I have found myself in a weird place between being a full-time student & a graduate still living in student housing, knowing that there's exciting new things coming in the near future, but we don't know what those things are yet. Seriously, I feel all the expressed emotions in this photo. The dancing tea bags because I completed my master's degree (I was never going to do more school after college), the tangled tea "water" because I'm thankful for what I have & hopeful for what is to come (though dealing with friends moving out is sad too), & the singing/screaming spoons...yeah, who doesn't relate to those?!

I want your answers!

My efforts & encouragement to you. GET OUTSIDE! (Bike, Walk, Swing, Sit in the Sun!)  READ (I'm taking suggestions being recently graduated & also digging into scripture more freely) COMMUNICATE! (Call a friend you haven't talked to in a long time, write a letter, set up a tea time date!) EXERCISE! (Zumba, Yoga, Tribal Challenges, whatever your thing is! EAT! (good summer produce & don't forget to drink your tea!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Sunday Snippits with the GOOD, BAD, & UGLY!

It's Sunday Snippits time! My mind is whirling after 1 too many tastes of caffeinated beverages in the first half of the day. Oops!

And we're back linking up with the ladies of

GOOD: Life is pretty easy going right now. This is a blessing after the whirlwind of graduate school, meeting my best-friend/husband, & moving once a year for the last 10 years. We've been enjoying time with friends & working on little tasks we've been meaning to do for months or even years. My most recent debate (with myself) is if I need a hardcopy address book or if I can fully rely on electronics. After this weekend of colossal summer storms & no internet, I've decided a hardcopy is still a good thing Thankfully, I have a blank address book that I've kept for the last 10 years! It was a high-school graduation gift. Another fun good thing this last week was playing bocce ball with friends before the 2nd massive storm & the next day enjoying a long walk to the fair grounds for the Back to the 50's car show. This was possibly our last chance of having deep-fried cheese curds that are fresh & delicious from the MN fair grounds. We also enjoyed a raspberry & pineapple twist dolewhip cone!

BAD: We don't have internet due to the damage of the storms. We're currently sitting in a Caribou & even their internet isn't reliable due to everybody else doing the same thing we're doing. Our friends are slowly, but surely packing up their apartments & moving for first calls & other adventures. The fear of loneliness is a little too real right now. 

UGLY: Summer has come roaring in with high winds, torrential rains, & fiery lightening bolts. There are hundreds of thousands of people without power & lots of other damage. Our car was darn close to having a giant old pine tree right on top of it. Campus was flooding & Z's phones (he was on call for head resident) were blowing up. It was chaos!

Coming Up: This week will be an adventure of everything getting cleaned up & restored. We've got a lot of fun, but sad events with friends as they are preparing to move to the next thing. Tomorrow night a St. Paul Saints game!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Friday Foto Fun!

Here's a piece of vacation for you. It was a good time of getting lots of rest, over indulging on fun food, playing in the ocean, & going on adventures to local historical sites.

Now we're back in MN where the breeze is MN nice & living into whatever comes next!

Breathing deep in the unknown.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Thirsting for a Thursday Special?!

We're back from vacation & figuring out how to jump back into a routine of being productive citizens of our community. You've most likely missed Sunday Snippits & Tuesday Tea Time, those are everybody's favorite pieces of me sharing Life, Spirit, & Sparkle. So here's a Thursday Special to quench your Thursday Thirst!

Vacation time is over & it's a chore getting back into a routine. It's not an unwelcome chore, but nonetheless a chore. 

Vacation Highlights
1. The beach
2. Our fairly quiet resort (totally recommend The Outrigger)
5. Visiting Ernest Hemingway's home in Key West, seeing his polydextrous cats, & then eating at his local favorite local saloon (see Sloppy Joe's).

We got lots of rest, saw some cool historical sites, took in the local eateries, & collected some really neat shells. The ocean was warm & waves were playful. 

What adventures has the Spirit led you to lately?

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Tuesday Tea Time!

Tuesday Tea Time!

Yesterday was

Where you aware this existed?!

To celebrate Z & I went to Caribou for one of their sparkling ice tea drinks. We've now tasted their Apple Raspberry & Peach Black Tea. While they didn't have any specials for National Iced Tea Day, we did get the discount for answering the trivia question right. You can't live in MN or be a child of the '90s & not know that Emilio Estevez played Coach Bombay in The Mighty Ducks movies!

Yesterday was not just a good day for iced tea, but a GREAT day for iced tea because it was the first day in several days that the sun warmed things up enough to break a sweat while walking. I can't trust that it'll stay like this though because it hasn't been consistant enough to trust. So we took our sparkling tea drink & went to Como Lake for a walk. When Z & I first started dating I lived just across the park from the lake & we'd go walking there often, but we hadn't been in a long time. 

Today as I drink my Tuesday Tea I remember the places I've been & the people I've lived with in the last 4 years & dream about what's to come.

Where's your Tuesday Tea time taking you?

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Sunday Snippits!

It's never too late in the day for
Sunday Snippits,
is it?

This week we're back with

GOOD: Last Tuesday I was officially released from my care following the car accident I was in a few months ago! No more constant appointments. While they were massage & chiropractor related, the scheduling got a little crazy. Thursday we had our friends B&M BR over for dinner after talking about it all school year. We made a delicious bruschetta chicken with garlic red mashed potatoes & sautéed kale. Then we sat around the table & purposely bruised our peaches so that they were juicy enough to make dessert (impromptu cobbler). The BRs are a true blessing to Z & I in so many ways. B is a phenomenal artist & M is pursuing her phd in the Fall. The best quote of the night was, "That Jesus guy, he just keeps reappearing!" Friday Z & I got up early to celebrate National Donut Day, then worked for a few hours, then headed to WI to tour the 45th Parallel Distillery. This was a Groupon Christmas gift that we were finally able to use. Lesson of the day, Scotland is more hospitable. Some things just shouldn't be tried on their own (like vodka, gin, or aquavit). Saturday we met up with friends from Youth Encounter that I hadn't seen in several years & picnicked at the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. It was lovely & our friend RR convinced us to try cow tongue tacos! To cap off the day Z & I kidsat WOK 4 other kids. It was quite the party with pizza & finger-paint & sugar!

BAD: This seems lame, but the weather. Yeah, this isn't Spring or Summer. It's a wet chilly mess!

UGLY: Aquavit & Horseradish Vodka (might be good in a bloody mary if that's your drink).

COMING UP:  This week started out nicely with church service & lunch with Ma & Pa N. They wanted to celebrate Z's bday with us before we left on vacation (we leave on Z's bday). With that in mind there will be Tuesday Tea Time & then a brief hiatus while we're on vacation. I'll resume with a Wednesday or Thursday Surprise!

Friday, June 7, 2013

Friday Foto Fun!

T-4 days I'll be enjoying the Southwest FL heat with my best friend/husband & maybe something fun like these drinks on the beach. Even if Tropical Storm Andrea is still raging (which I really hope she's done), there will be warmer weather & fun drinks.

Close your eyes, take a deep breath, & enjoy a summer drink!

Tips about vacationing in Ft. Myers Beach, FL welcomed!


maple almond cake & cake with chocolate ganache & sprinkles from

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Tuesday Tea Time!

Tuesday Tea Time!

Welcome to my Tuesday morning tea time. Today I'm drinking echinacea tea. While I've been told that echinacea is too medicinal for many, even in smell, I really enjoy it. I especially enjoy the Yogi Tea line (of any tea)!

Last week there was so much excitement that I didn't confess that I had to throw away two travel mugs. Back in April I blogged about leaky travel mugs. Well the purple one kept burning me & the other one was leaking from the bottom of the mug. I know, the fact that I had to throw away 2 of them & still have others is totally a #1stWorldProblem.


I now have my small, but trusty, batik travel mug & my large, trusty, sparkly gold travel mug. All that to say, this is not what I was going to blog about this morning! My other ideas will have to wait till another time.

But please, tell me, what do you think about this quote?

"Goodness should become human nature, because it is real in nature."
 Yogi Tea Tag Quote of the day

 Is goodness not human nature?

Check out how the Bible might help: Micah 6:8, the Psalms (14, 23, 31) Romans 8:28, Galatians 5:22, or any others?!

What other sources help us define goodness?

Here's to finding hope in your Tuesday Tea Time!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Monday Miracle: Sparkling through the GOOD,BAD, & UGLY

Today is Miracle Monday!

Why? Because each day is a miracle & it's Monday! Yes, my thought process is that simple.

The recently seminary graduated brain wants me to dig deeper into what a miracle is, but that's for another day.

So here it is...

GOOD: The last week was such a full & blessed week! I worked as Info Desk attendant, Admissions Ambassador for Camp Day, Toddler Day Care Provider, & Wedding Coordinator. In the middle of that was my GOLDEN BIRTHDAY! Z & I finally made it to Historic Fort Snelling to see the sights, be entertained by dozens of elementary and junior high aged youth on field trips, & enjoy a little Minnesota history. At dinner that night at Hell's Kitchen (excellent food & dietary friendly for all sorts of dietary needs) I was surprised by the coolest birthday candle I've ever seen! 

It sparkled, spun, & played music!
The evening was topped off with a slice of ice cream cake & 16 people hanging out in our tiny apartment. Thursday was Camp Day, which meant a day of training sessions offered by Luther Sem for local camp staff that wanted to take part. Friday, Saturday, & Sunday was filled with J&K's wedding festivities & now we're off to a busy week with lots of work hours.

BAD: My friends have started moving away. While this is good for them, it's sad for us who are still here. BDLF left without her crock-pot, so I get to go retrieve that tonight. This is upside of still being here; knowing you'll see each other again soon!

UGLY: I'm a little sunburned & it's a little funny 'cause it's only on the sides of my forearms & wrists. Also, our friend & classmate FJ hasn't heard about any potential work sites & MJ keeps getting potential sites that aren't interested in a recent graduate. So we all keep on waiting for "what's next" & figuring out ways to answer the constantly repeated question of "What have you heard?" without going batty.


Sunday, June 2, 2013

Sunday Snippits!

Sunday Snippits

& I'm bushed. 

I apologize for the inconsistency of my blogging lately. I will update tomorrow with a Monday Miracle update on the GOOD, the BAD, and the UGLY.

Anybody else a little sun kissed from this beautiful weather?