Friday, December 31, 2010

For Auld Lang Syne, My Dear

As I join in with the world on looking back over the past year, I have to say it was one filled with new beginnings. Let me give you the highlights:

January

The year opened up on a good note - a wedding! Matt's cousin Andrew married his soul mate Amber and we got to spend a lot of great times with Matt's side of the family.


On January 12th, Haiti was hit by a 7.0 earthquake. I started The Wardrobe Challenge which lasted 54 days, and got to learn about a lot of really great organizations. Haiti is still in a state of emergency with an outbreak of cholera, riots during December's elections, and a lot of the world having moved on to more recent disasters. Keep the country in prayer, that roads would be rebuilt, the government would remain willing and open to aid organizations, and that there would be an outpouring of the Holy Spirit to bring a revival.

February

Matt went to San Francisco for one of his college friend's wedding, I continued the Challenge and we went to one awful production of the musical "Company."

And we got a few breaks of sunshine in an otherwise very chilly and wet year.



March

We made the major decision to move someplace with lower rent so we could speed up our goal of getting out of debt. With God's grace we found a place on the Eastside, sold a lot of our stuff and gave a lot of it away, and transitioned to a place of simpler living.


 In the time since, we've kicked our credit card debt, and still managed to take a number of trips!

April

Just a matter of days after we moved into our new place, we packed our bags and got on a plane to my parent's new place in Oklahoma. Good times all around, although Matt and I did take quite a number of naps.



May

It had been a few months since we'd gone to a wedding, so again we packed our bags and headed to Philadelphia for another one! You might remember my seatmate, Ethel.  Good times.

Matt was blessed to be a groomsman for one of his friends who was a groomsman at our wedding, and we really had a great trip and had fun touring Philly again



June

June we got to stay home for the most part, and host friends and family. My second parents, Mark and Charlene, came up for a visit and brought my parents with them...well, sort of...


My cousin Michael and his wife Sara and son Jadon also came up. It was the first time they've gotten to meet Matt, which was fun! We got to take them to Snoqualmie Falls, eat fish and chips downtown, and Jadon and Roy got to bond.



July

We started off the month with a trip to Groveland, where I celebrated my 26th birthday, then the 4th of July, then we did the North Dome hike...all with a 6 day migraine but we still had a good time!



We did another No Spend Month and really kicked all our credit card debt! What an awesome feeling!!! Having signed up for a CSA, we got to experiment with a lot of new foods, and in my thriftiness I even made my first dress ever. Too bad it was never warm enough to wear it more than twice!

We went to a coworker's wedding, climbed Mt Townsend, and hosted my cousins April and George (wait, was that in August? Tempus Fugit).

Towards the end of the month I was going through wedding withdrawals, so off I went to So Cal to the wedding of a childhood friend. My parents came too, and we had a big ole' reunion at the beach!



The next day we were up to our elbows in flowers, and I was having minor panic attacks because I had been volunteered to do the bride's - my friend of 15 or so years - bouquet. All in all things worked out, and it was one of the most gorgeous weddings I've ever been to. 





August

Matt's parents came to visit, I started making aprons as more than a hobby, and on a whim my best friend Charissa and I headed up to Whistler for a long weekend. The journey there alone was entertaining enough, but nothing could have prepared me for how gorgeous Canada is!


September

In September Matt and I switched our plans from a mini vacay in Leavenworth to a return to Whistler. We got to ride the gondolas to the top of Blackcomb and Whistler, and I have to say that alone was worth the trip!




Then we decided to become temporary masochists and go through a detox a naturopath suggested. I have never felt more sick in my entire life. Eight days of that was enough, but it took my body a month to actually recover. 

October

October was a bit of a whirlwind. I started taking my apron making seriously, you guys helped me come up with a new shop name - The Ruffled Owl, I hit my 100th post, and decided to start training for a half marathon. Phew, I'm tired just thinking about that month.

We also got to visit the pumpkin patch and have a fall-ishly good time.





was this picture a foreshadow?

November

The biggie in November was I found out I was pregnant. A bit of a shock, as we weren't trying! I also got to join in on Rachel Reeves' Thankful on Paper

December

The real fun of pregnancy has begun. I get to experience firsthand the morning sickness so talked about, and added on top of that are my everlasting migraines. Lovely.

Oh, and don't forget my first visit to the OBGYN. That was fun.

Christmas we made it to Arizona without much incident (other than being put in a holding pattern in that huge storm for 45 minutes), and enjoyed being with my family for the holidays. We slept in late, played games, watched movies, laughed constantly and ate until we couldn't eat no more.

Here's a visual recap...


Ammah gets an early gift...go HERE to see the hilarious video!



still lovebirds after almost 30 years...

I think I see your tonsils, Ammah...


Gotta love a fast camera that catches these moments...


My brother wearing the singing, dancing hat...


out in Potato Patch with the new lens


my handsome bro...

 and gorgeous Ammah...can you believe this woman is going to be a great-grandma???

and I'm still a Daddy's girl...


and we still can't believe this time next year we'll be a Mama and Daddy!

So that's the year in a longer-than-expected recap. It was fun, it was fast, it was frugal, it was fortifying, it was overall fantastic! May your year ahead be filled with new adventures, old friends, and covered in God's love!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

My Ammah Gets a Christmas Surprise...

It was Christmas Eve and after an evening of tamales and last minute shopping, we asked Ammah to turn on a Christmas movie. Unknown to her was that while the girls were out shopping, the boys were setting up a little surprise...

video

Monday, December 20, 2010

Christmastime and A First Doctor's Visit...

First off, thank you everyone for your encouragement in my last post. It is so nice hearing I'm not the only one who can hardly make it awake through the day, or that other people have had nausea much worse than I'm experiencing!

At this time, I'm at a point where you gotta either laugh or cry. So I'm choosing to laugh, albeit with a tear shed now and then from some stupid sappy commercial that wreaks havoc on my hormone-infused heart.

This Morning Cup is in two portions. The first being for everyone and the latter...well...I think women will get the most kick out of it.  Its about my first visit with the doctor, and I have a hard time believing men have anything quite comparable that they go through.

First off it is Christmas time here and elsewhere, and what would that be without a Christmas tree? I am adamant about having a fresh Christmas tree. No offense to you fakers out there, but there is just something magical about that living tree in your house. And don't tell me to get a ficus.

Our new place being a bit smaller, and the fact that we'll be out of town for Christmas made us realize a full-size tree was not in the picture this year. Luckily my coworker knew of my hunt for the elusive table-top tree, and found the CUTEST one for us!

So here's our mini-tree, complete with far too few lights because I couldn't find the 10 strands I carefully wound and bagged last year, and a doll-sized knitted cap because our star didn't fit just right!


isn't it just the cutest?

And Roy got into the holiday spirit as well...


(he's not waiting for a treat or anything)

Now we're off to pack our bags for our flight down to Arizona to be with my family for Christmas, and I have to say I can hardly wait! My family has a way of blowing Christmas way out of proportion. Its the time of year we all go berserk, blatantly lie to one another about gifts, and think of new ways to take our wackiness to new levels.

If only we could bring Roy Boy The Reindeer...


Moving on to Part II of this post, this one's for the ladies who've had to experience the wonderful times at the OBGYN...

I'm just tellin' it how it is, peoples.

My original appointment with the doctor was for 9:45 this morning. Imagine a large backwards L, with the OBGYN on top, my home at the corner and work at the far end. The plan was to head to the doctor's, then still make it to work with most of the day left. 

Right before I was ready to walk out the door, I got a call that the doctor was currently delivering a baby...could we postpone the appointment? Sure...I said (what was I going to say, no?), and I got to work at 10, only to leave at 12:45 for the 20+ mile drive back around the L. Why there was traffic at 1:15 I have no idea, but after waiting on the freeway offramp for close to 15 minutes I made it to my appointment 5 minutes early.

I had been once before, but just to see a nurse and get a quick shot. Today was the first time I was meeting with the actual doctor. I was shown into a room, my blood pressure was taken, and I was told to undress from the waist down and cover up with this - and was handed a large, paper towel-like sheet.

I did as was told, but then was confronted with a dilemma. See, the paper-towel-thingy wasn't quite big enough to wrap all the way around me. Normally that would be fine, but the way the room was positioned my back was to the door and the first thing whoever came in would see would me my plump rump sitting nudely on the table. 

Hmmm.

I fidgeted and tucked and twisted, sure at any moment the door would be opened and the song Fly Me To The Moon would take on a whole new meaning.

Finally I got the thing partway around me, and if I sat caddy-cornered on the table I was mostly covered. So I sat and waited.

Then I noticed the ultrasound that was all prepped and ready to go.


Oh dear.

During the first ultrasound I had a couple of weeks ago everything in the room was so dark I never really got a look around. Now I got to sit next to this for a long, chilly 30 minutes.

And yes that's a condom on there. A straight up Trojan, if you want to know (no pun intended...okay maybe intended).

If you're wondering what that is its a vaginal ultrasound, so they can take a look at the baby up close and personal.

About 15 minutes pass of me flipping through a Women's Day magazine and reading the latest and greatest in metallic lipsticks, when I got curious how long I'd been waiting. And I wanted to take a picture of that thing because it was just too funny to pass up.

Only problem was my purse was on the floor. To get to it I would have to get up, again exposing my backside to the door. I debated and waited 5 more minutes. By then I had had all I could take of that magazine and made a dash for it. I dropped the towel thingy, then it tore a bit, but I managed to get my phone and get my butt back on the table.

Thankfully the door remained closed and I was able to settle back and once again begin the twisting and tucking of the towel to cover my rear. I'm not necessarily an overly-modest person. You're listening to a girl who used to go skinny-dipping in the ocean at midnight and then smoke cigars on the beach. (oh college days...)

But the middle of the night with a bunch of girlfriends and in the stark fluorescent light of a waiting room where a stranger is going to walk in at any moment are two different things.

Finally, almost 40 minutes later, the doctor came in. 

Hi, nice to meet you.  Please spread your legs and put your feet in the stirrups.

Most of you ladies have been there. That cold device they use...blech I hate that thing! Luckily the doctor kept me talking about random things and before you knew it she was done with the exam part and there was a picture of my little munchkin on the screen.


And what do you know, it was dancing a little boogie! It was the cutest thing!

That picture right there made up for the fact that when the doctor left she didn't offer any kleenex to...um...clean up. Oh well, I got to see my peanut dance and it was well worth the bare-butt wait!

'Till next time, I remain your excessively tired and nauseous friend.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Preggers Ain't No Picnic

Thus far, I should say.

I think moms must get amnesia and completely forget the first trimester.

The wondering if those delicious spicy cheese enchiladas are going to burn your throat when they come back up.

The constant suspicion that somebody must be slipping Unisom in your food because you can't keep your eyes open, much less have any energy to do anything useful.

That nauseous feeling almost All. The. Time.

And, in my case, the raging four and a half day migraine that put me in some sort of excruciating pain cloud with no end in sight until Matt finally took me to urgent care. Thank the sweet Lord that Zofran actually took the pain from a 9 to a 2! I can function at a 2!

I'm eight an a half weeks along, the little munchkin is the size of a raspberry, and typing the word raspberry makes me want some.

With yogurt.

And orange juice.

Through all of this loveliness, Matt has been my hero. Making dinner, doing the dishes, keeping the house picked up, rubbing my shoulders, walking Roy, doing the laundry, and just about everything else I am unable to do at the moment.

Yesterday I woke up, went to work, struggled to stay awake and actually earn my keep, went home and took a three hour nap, Matt woke me up for dinner which I ate, threw up, and went back to bed.

And that's my life at the moment.

Hopefully one more month of this and I'll be in that happy-hello-energy-my-long-lost-friend-pregnant stage in which I'll whip up an apron an hour whilst cleaning and producing the most delicious dinners known to man...

Let's hope...

Thursday, December 9, 2010

A Little News...

Well I know its been nearly two weeks now, but frankly I haven't been quite up to blogging as I usually am.

This probably comes from the fact that I've spent more time on the couch during the past three weeks than the last three months combined.

That's because I'm now 8 weeks pregnant!

It was a surprise to us, as we weren't really planning on trying for a family until the early next year but God has other plans! We've tried to keep it pretty quiet, seeing as its still very early in the pregnancy.

Tuesday we had a bit of a scare, and Matt met me at the hospital for our first ultrasound.  I thought maybe I had had a miscarriage, and was trying to prepare myself for the worst. After some bloodwork, we went in for the ultrasound.

There was our little baby...about the size of a blueberry with a flashing heartbeat. Matt and I looked at each other and smiled in relief. Definitely one of those moments that will be seared into my mind forever.

When I got home, one of my pregnancy emails said that once you see or hear the heartbeat, the chances of a miscarriage drop to less than 2%...so I figured it was a good time to tell y'all!


So if you notice a slight dip in the blogging during these first few months, now you'll understand why!


Love you all, and am so thankful I have you to share this with!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thankful on Paper - Week Four

Here we are at the last week of Rachel Reeves' Thankful on Paper.



This week I am most thankful for my husband, Matthew.

Coincidentally, today (Wednesday) is our third anniversary.

I met Matt through the outdoor adventure program at Point Loma Nazarene University. We took a three day backpacking trip up San Jacinto together, he loaned me his long johns, and we talked all the way hiking down from the peak in the moonlight.

Fast forward a school year of friendship, going to chapel together, going rock climbing together, and I'd developed a crush on this guy who was going to graduate and leave San Diego.  Our first official date was two days before he graduated and we stayed up until four in the morning talking.

At the end of the summer, my family happened to take a yearly camping trip at a lake in the Sierras where Matt happened to work as a backpack guide for a kid's camp.  All by sheer coincidence, right?

At Bass Lake I got my first kiss, we became "official," and a month later Matt moved back to San Diego with no job and no plan other than to be near me. He worked three jobs, had a host of roommates and somehow managed to make it while I finished up my last year of college.

On May 31st of 2007, almost two years after our first date and underneath a blue moon, he proposed. You can read that story HERE, because I personally think it is still the world's best proposal and we should enter it in some competition and win a second honeymoon.

November 24, 2007 we began our journey as husband and wife, and it has been one heck of a wild ride. Tonight while driving we did a quick recap of the past three years and are a bit amazed at all we've managed to cram into it!

I am thankful Matthew is a God-fearing man. He does what is right even when it is not easy. He is trustworthy. He is giving of his time, money and himself. He is so loving, I have to remind myself that love is a gift because I certainly don't deserve his unswerving love for me. He takes care of me, in every way. He is funny, and makes me do that really unflattering GUFFAW laugh. He is content with where we are in life without being stagnant. He is competitive, which makes playing games with him fun and annoying at the same time.

Monday night, during the worst night of weather and traffic jams in recent Seattle history, Matt spent 5 1/2 hours driving 20 miles to get to me, and I know if he had run out of gas he would have walked through the storm to reach me.

Matthew, I love you and am so thankful that three years ago you said "I do" to me. I can't wait to start the next adventure with you.



Thursday, November 18, 2010

Thankful on Paper ~ Week Three

Week Three of Thankful on Paper.



As I'm looking forward to flying to California to spend Thanksgiving with Matt's family I realize how thankful I am for the Palmers.

I felt like I was family even before Matt and I were married. They've always been so warm, so welcoming and so loving to me. I think sometimes I take for granted how much that means.

Quick example, I met Matt's Grandma Sue (Beth's mom) just once while he and I were dating. At that point she was in a nursing home and suffering from dementia, and I'm not sure if she got who I was. When she passed away Matt and I had only been married a short time, but upon reading her obituary in the local paper I was listed as one of her grandchildren.

Beth, my mother-in-law (or mom-in-love which is such a nicer term), is one of the most compassionate, gracious and life loving people I know. Dave has this deep content that is contagious. Going to their house is always like a vacation. Pop open a Sierra Nevada ale, put your feet up and just be. From them I have learned what a gift it is to just sit back and enjoy life without rushing through it.

When they would come to visit I used to always ask Matt what we should do...go see a movie? Take them downtown? I think I've finally realized they don't need entertaining, they just enjoy being with us, and I'm thankful that I enjoy just being with them.
They are both givers, through and through. Matt's family tradition for Christmas was to open presents on Christmas Eve just because Beth couldn't wait any longer. I think Matt's inherited that, seeing as I got my last birthday present three weeks early!



My sister-in-law, Katie, is full of love and passion. She is unafraid to jump wholeheartedly into something she believes. She loves selflessly, and searches valiantly for what's important in life.

Shortly after my first date with Matt, he graduated college and asked if he and his sister could stay with my family on their drive back to northern California. We weren't even "official" but I remember having so much fun with both of them that I thought, "Sheesh, if this doesn't work out with Matt I still want to be friends with his sister!"



Besides Matt's immediate family, I'm grateful to be a part of ALL of them. Matt's Uncle Chris officiated our wedding.



When I first met his cousin Rachel it was like seeing a younger version of myself with all her likes and interests (minus the sports)! I first met Aunt June on the Thanksgiving before our wedding (we were married two days after Thanksgiving in 2007) and knew she was definitely family! Last January we went down for Matt's cousin Andrew's wedding to Amber and it was so much fun being able to help out with the rehearsal dinner and help with Teresa's hair and just to be there with everyone. I love that I keep in close contact with my husband's cousin's wife and we just cut all that out and call each other cousin.

All that to say I can't wait to get to that little town outside of Yosemite and be with my Mama and Papa Palmer, my sister-in-law and my cousins. I can't wait to sing and play games and laugh with them.

Thank You Jesus for this wonderful family I married into!


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Thankful On Paper - Week Two

Click HERE to see what other people are grateful for

This week I am thankful for my three parents. 

Or more literally, my mom, dad and Ammah.

Maybe its too obvious, but I really feel like I could never than them enough.

Ammah was more than a grandmother who I occasionally visited. She was a part of our life nearly every day growing up. 

Ammah makes the best chicken fried steak and white, thick gravy that you will ever EVER taste.

Ammah went rollerblading with us when rollerblading was all the rage.

Ammah taught me the beauty of a Sunday afternoon nap on the floor with a blanket, old movie and some brownies fresh out of the oven.

When I was 21, Ammah and I took off in my 2 wheel drive 4Runner to find the Grand Canyon (pre-GPS). Most of it was on dirt roads with no signs and I'm pretty sure we were in a few places we weren't supposed to be, but between the constant jangle of the change in my ashtray, my visors flopping down and our incessant laughter we made it to some point at the edge of the canyon. 

video


Ammah is an amazing woman of God, and has been an example of strength and faithfulness.


My dad is my hero. Always has been and always will be. I think of my dad when I watch movies like Braveheart...noble, honorable, courageous. He is a visionary and speaks in terms of a vision. 

One time on a family vacation our car broke down in Modesto and we literally coasted into the parking lot of a church on Sunday morning. After attending the service, my dad approached the pastor and told him we were "wayfaring strangers." I thought my mom was going to disappear beneath a pew. But he is the one who has always and will always encourage us to set off on a voyage and explore new things. 

I also think of my dad when I watch movies like Cheaper by the Dozen or Parenthood. Goofy, zany, and always a blast. My young cousin once told him he was like a real life video game.

A few months before I got married I got to go to Uganda with my dad. It was a trip I'll never forget, and all the more precious that I got to spend it with him.

In a few words, my dad is a joy magnet. 




My dad taught me that some men can be trusted, dads are good, and that our Heavenly Dad is even better. 
He is a walking example of love and joy.



My mom is my best friend. I don't know if that has anything to do with her reverse psychology of telling me while I was in first grade that one day in high school I may not like her, but if it does then it worked and I am so doing that with my daughter if we have one.

For all her constant complaint about not having a great education growing up, my mom is one of the smartest women I know. She has the gift of discernment, which is awesome except for when I've slipped up. 

My mom laughs louder than anyone I know. In high school during plays, we could hear her laugh  carried through the actor's microphones and through the speakers in the back. She's also one of the funniest people I know. Between her and Ammah I think the only reason I didn't have a six pack from laughing so much was the white gravy.

Together, my mom and I are some kind of indomitable force. Maybe its God's plan we live half across the country from each other right now. If we lived closer we just might take over the world and get things running right. 

Give us a swatch of cloth, a toothpick and a diet coke and we'll give you a production.



I am the Baby Girl, and my mom is an amazing pointer to Jesus. Her heart for broken people overflows with healing love that's exemplary of how Christians are supposed to be.

Thanks Dad, Mom, and Ammah, for training me up in the way I should go, for loving me enough to discipline me, and for giving me roots and wings.

Oh yeah...and my mom and dad are flying in to Seattle TONIGHT!!!! I can barely contain the excitement!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Panting...

This past week has been absolutely nonstop.

Upside is I've been falling asleep a lot faster than I ever have!

Downside is I may have bitten off more than I can chew, and all this time spent on aprons and running and training and writing leaves little time just to be with my hubby.

And that's not a good thing.

So while I'm still definitely doing The Ruffled Owl thing (get your orders in soon for Christmas!), and still going to keep training for a half marathon in January (gulp), I think the area I may slack off on is going to be the writing. If you'll note the little gadget on the right hand side that shows my NaNoWriMo progress, you'll see I'm about 5,000 words behind at the moment.

I'm not ditching the effort entirely, but I'm not going to let myself feel guilty if I don't meet my daily quota.  I will let myself feel guilty for not spending time with my husband.

If only I could figure out a way to squeeze six or seven more hours into the day...

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Thankful on Paper, Week One

Taking a cue from Number 17 Cherry Tree Lane's Rachel Reeves, I'm joining this month in being Thankful on Paper. 



I thought a lot about who I would write to. Only four to highlight? I could write to ten people every day of the month and still have more to thank! 

This also being NaNoWriMo, and I being in the throes of writing (or trying to keep up), I thought about dedicating each Thursday to four people who really influenced my imagination and my thirst for all things literary. A babysitter growing up, my fifth grade teacher Miss Ruth, and my two high school English teachers - Ziretta and Hamilton.

Then I realized that only one of them I could actually send a letter to. So as kinda a cheater first Thankful Thursday, here are the four I was going to do but can't exactly.

I don't even remember the babysitter's name, only that she would gather my brother and I around a globe, and we would take turns spinning it and stopping it with our finger. Then she would leave us in the room for five minutes to prepare for our "expedition," and when we came out she would somehow have converted parts of our house to wherever we were traveling. Even if it was somewhere in Mexico and she slapped on a Chevy's sombrero, grabbed my parent's maracas and made tacos...it made an impression. So thanks...Unnamed Babysitter.

I have no idea where Miss Ruth went, but we read so many interesting books in that class...books I still have! And I'm pretty sure she was completely aware that I was reading far ahead under my desk during the "read out loud" part of class, but she never said a word. She was one of the only teachers who could give a legit answer when I would ask why I needed to know what we were learning (ie math will always be a part of life). Before her all I got was that it was prep for the next grade.

Ziretta was one of those wacky, dead-poets-society-type teachers who would take his podium up on a counter to quite literally look over our shoulders while we took a test to make sure no one cheated. If I ever began to zone out in class he would make his way over to my desk and SLAP his hand down scaring the bejeebers out of me while yelling out my last name--CURRAN! Quirks aside, he also showed me how much deeper you can look into literature, and kept urging me to join the Orange County Academic Decathalon.  I think I only went to one meeting, but it was nice knowing someone thought I was smart enough that I should join. 

Mrs. Hamilton carried that theme of digging into literature over into AP English, giving me my first taste of Pride & Prejudice, and making us practice writing over and over and over until we had it drilled in our head that the first lines of anything were the most important ('scuze me while I rewrite the opening of this blog). She was also my freshman English teacher, and on the first day wore a black snake necklace with ruby eyes. No one dared cross her, but the longer you knew her the more you found she really is a softie. Okay maybe softie isn't the right word, but definitely a gem. She still works at Calvary...and I've had a card I've been meaning to send her for years...maybe I'll actually get around to it this month!

ALLL that to say that rather than focus on these influential people, I chose to highlight people I can actually get in touch with.

First up is Charissa.


2003 at the Tower of London
My randomly-picked roommate my freshman year of college. She taught me that some rules are okay to break. We've had pillow fights and peanut fights and newspaper fights, and during one torrential rainstorm we headed to the softball field and she taught me some basic training combat moves in the mud. I still have the pajamas that were dyed orange from the gritty and slimy field. 

We backpacked around the UK and Ireland together, explored alleys, got to play Eddie Vedder's guitar and Miles Davis' trumpet in the basement vault of the Hard Rock Cafe while the tour guide flipped off the alarms for us and went upstairs to smoke a joint. 

We've cried together, called each other out, and I've lost track of the times I've been called a nag. We flew a kite in a sandstorm, woke up outside on an Easter morning to the sound of coyotes, got scared out of our wits by a mule's head appearing in my driver side window and chewing on my steering wheel, and hopped a fence to sit in a hotel hot tub and smoke cigars, but I still can't get her to go nossing with me.

She taught me that thankfully our Lord is a God of grace. 

Grace is getting what we don't deserve. 

And that's what she is, a friend I don't deserve. 

Love you Charis.

she's going to kill me to putting this picture up...