Friday, June 25, 2010

Lowering Standards Is A Good Thing

I've always told myself that regardless of how busy or tired I am, I'll always leave the house looking semi-put together (work out clothes and a baseball hat count because you're put together for the gym). That doesn't mean full face of make up or glam hair, but it does mean not leaving the house with wet hair. It's my standard, and I'm sticking to it. Three times this week I have left for work with wet hair. And surprisingly, I just don't give two poots. I did feel a little bad about it this morning as I wheeled into Harris Teeter to buy a banana and Cherry Vanilla Diet Pepsi (my happy place... the drink, not the store). Then I saw a middle aged woman wearing pigtails and thought to myself, "Wet hair may be bad, but it's not even close to that bad. Ick. Nast." So I've lowered my standards, and I feel good about that.

As a brief aside, when Google imaging your subject matter, "Adult Pigtails" will give you a whole lot more than you were bargaining for.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Rules #39 and #40 - Words of Wisdom

Before taking a large swig of last night's diluted glass of Diet Coke at 7:30 a.m., it would behoove you to recall whether or not there's rum in it. If there is, and you forgot, well.... good morning!

When you get caught doing push ups in the work bathroom, scrambling off the floor and explaining that you're looking for a dropped contact is fairly believable. Unless you're wearing glasses. Then you just look extra lame (with tight and toned arms, natch).

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Missing You Is Just a Part of Living...

When Papaw passed away at the end of March, I knew that I would always miss him. I mourned his loss, but I also celebrated his life. I was so joyful that he was free from the pain that his melanoma caused and that he wasn't weary from the fight anymore. I wasn't prepared, though, for the pain that hits me like a ton of bricks at least once a week. Father's Day was emotional without him. Before Friday's road trip to Cary, the beau and I put together jammin' driving CDs. I added some of my current favorite songs including tracks from Paper Tongues, Muse, Amy Grant and Jars of Clay. As the opening notes of Amy Grant's "Better Than A Hallelujah," filled the car, I started crying and just couldn't stop. Unfortunately the next song was Jars of Clay's version of "I'll Fly Away." I used both when making the video we played during Papaw's memorial service. The tears didn't stop for a long time, and they'll probably come many more times in the future, but I'm thankful that laughs and smiles at his memory will accompany them.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Shower Surprises

While we were in St. Thomas I missed the bachelorette party of my dear friend Southern Sunshine. I am so honored to be serving as a bridesmaid, but it seemed like a tragedy that I wouldn't see her (or meet her lovely fiance) until wedding weekend. Thankfully, the beau and I were invited to a couples' shower in their honor in Cary on Friday night. Unbeknownst to sweet Southern Sunshine we headed to the party on Friday night. I think to say she was a smidge surprised to see us is an understatement. It was so good for my heart to spend a few hours celebrating the impending nuptials of someone so important to me. Love you, Ave!

And speaking of IRL blogging friends, I am ECSTATIC to announce that my Supermodel has finally started her own blog! Head on over to Y'all & Yanks (how cute!) and give her a follow and some love!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

The Audacity

Last night I had the mid-week opportunity to hear Pastor Steven Furtick preach on the subject of audacious faith. I don't think I can adequately express how thankful I am to have a leader like Pastor Furtick share God's word with me and continually encourage, challenge, support and convict me. My faith continues to grow in leaps in bounds, and I have no doubt that Pastor Furtick has been a catalyst in that.

Pastor preached last night from Joshua 10:12-14 and challenged us to seize God's vision for our lives. Few people have seized that vision quite like he has, and he preached that whatever vision we think God has for us, that calling is actually bigger than we think. I got goosebumps and was completely floored when he said, "If the size of the vision God has for your life isn't intimidating to you, then it's probably insulting to God."

I am constantly in prayer that I will recognize the Lord's vision for me, but I am so guilty of downsizing that calling to a manageable size. Something I can wrap my head around, and ultimately, something I can check off my list as done. That's not the purpose God has for me or for you. Instead of feeling like we've "made it" and accomplished that great and mighty "It" set before us, the point of our lives is to be continuously striving to fulfill "it." God's power is too limitless to quantify, and so too, is the plan that God has to use each and every one of us for His glory.

You can't possess audacious faith without activating it. As Pastor Furtick calls it from the Joshua scriptures, "your Sun Stand Still prayer." Joshua commanded the sun to literally stand still in the sky, and the Lord rewarded his audacity to ask by manifesting His power to act. But when you ask the sun to stand still, the results of that great prayer are not visible immediately. It takes time to see whether or not the sun has moved, and so too will your sun stand still prayer require patience and continued faith - not a one-time action.

Immediately before and after Joshua prayed for the sun to freeze in the sky, he most certainly wondered whether the Lord would affirm his request. He didn't doubt whether He COULD, but he also recognized that God didn't HAVE to respond. When you and I experience a word from God about our lives and His calling on them, there will always be a certain degree of uncertainty in place. A resonating message from Pastor Furtick's sermon last night stated that "audacious faith is not birthed in the absence of ambiguity." And truly, without ambiguity where is there a place for faith and trust? Without some measure of vagueness, there is no room left for dependence on an unseen God to act on our behalf.

Audacious faith and those momentous Sun Stand Still prayers are not, absolutely not, passive. In fact, they require more action than almost any other aspect of our lives. You must be willing to make a move. It is essential that your trust in our Heavenly Father extends beyond the words and petitions of your heart and into a realm where you don't second guess the notion that God may use you to be the very miracle that you are praying for. How can you expect God to accomplish something through you if you aren't willing to be the hands and feet needed to accomplish it? God's power can overcome your weaknesses and accomplish His vision for your life in spite of your shortcomings, and His power will empower your strengths supernaturally. After all, the same power that conquered the grave lives in you. Have the faith and courage to act AUDACIOUSLY according to that truth.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Love Him

It's my dad's birthday today too, and I just can't even begin to tell you how thankful I am to have him in my life. My dad is sweet and funny and my ultimate business advisor, and I adore him. Happy birthday, big guy! XOXO

Lobster, Lobster, Pinch, Pinch, Pinch

June 16 is a momentous day for me. Not only is it my dad's birthday (more on that in a later post), but it's also the birth celebration of my dear and darling Lobster! Lobsterita, you are as sweet and fun as you are cute and pretty, and I am so thankful for your friendship!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Who Said Guilty Pleasure?

On Monday afternoon I received the following text from aHr, "What are your guilty pleasure magazines? CGL II (her betrothed) doesn't believe me."

Without hesitation, I responded:

"Let's see...
US Weekly
Life & Style
Marie Claire
Sports Illustrated
There's probably more..."

I received one word in reply. "Ridiculous."

Seeing it laid out that way, yes, it is.

Monday, June 14, 2010

The Rest of the Weekend

My weekend didn't just consist of yummy homecooked meals and wicker chairs. Nope, in fact, the beau and I had the pleasure of celebrating the birth of two of our best friends... Lobster and HeLobster. We spent Saturday evening dining at Soul Gastrolounge (I swear it houses Charlotte's best sushi and salad) and then continuing the festivities at Thomas St. Tavern. Fun was had by all, and we were so excited to be part of this crustacean couple's special party!

A Weekend Makeover

When I decide I want to do something, I need it to be completed yesterday. I don't really allow any time between decision and execution, and the creation of my wonderful workroom is no exception. Not only did I start painting the walls a beautiful pink (Pink Innocence by Benjamin Moore) this weekend, but I took an old, dingy wicker chair and revamped for $4. The chair had once been a part of my childhood bedroom, but became relegated to a collector for my laundry and other miscellaneous crapola. I had forgotten all about it until Friday, and I scurried to find it at Little and Daddy's. A quick stop to Walmart for two cans of Krylon paint ($2.50 a pop), and I was in business. While I had brussel sprouts roasting in the oven, pasta cooking on the stove and Mahi Mahi and shrimp sizzling on the grill, I set to work. Two coats of Matte Aluminum, 30 minutes (and a delicious dinner) later, and my chair had taken on a whole new life. For Steeplechase this year I made a dress out of some pretty Liberty of London fabric. I was underwhelmed by the finished dress product (the color was just no good on my skin tone), so I took the dress apart and retooled it into a new cushion. I can't wait to put this sweet seat in my swiftly coming along workroom!


Read This!

For an awesome post Lisa wrote about Hems & Hers... thank you, Miss Lisa!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Sendin' Out an SOS

Over at Hems & Hers, we're in the market for interns! The demand for our pieces has (excitingly and incredibly) exceeded our ability to keep up in a timely manner, and we need you! We need extra hands to help us with all aspects of Hems & Hers from sewing to photography to Web editing, plus, you'll get to work with US (do you really need another selling point?)! You'll refine your sewing skills as well as learn and use marketing and advertising, small business operations, social media and more. Email if you're interested or have any questions.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Shocker of the Century

I have not consumed a single protein bar today. That's historic, to say the least. So what got me going this morning instead? Two words: Greek. Yogurt. I was reluctant to hop on the Greek yogurt bandwagon because when it comes to dairy substances, I don't really like "alternate" products. My wonderful and fabulous intern, Olive My Life, did some research for a new business pitch we have coming up and found tons of great information about the Greek goodness, and we decided to jump in together.

Oh my word, I had no idea there were so many different kinds of Greek yogurt on the market. So far I've tried Oikos, Dannon and Fage. Definitely my favorites have been Dannon Honey, Fage with Honey and Fage with Cherry. I've been mixing them with fruit (last week, strawberries, today bananas), and the combination is scrumptious, not to mention incredibly healthy. Greek yogurt has approximately twice as much protein per serving than regular yogurt, less sugar, and, in some cases, fewer calories. If it can get this girl to drop her protein bar, you best believe that it's worth trying out.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Where the Rum is Cheaper Than the Water

On Wednesday morning we boarded a plane to St. Thomas. Three hours later we were greeted with free rum shots (pineapple and guava flavors... tasty and delightful). Unbeknownst to me, St. Thomas is extremely mountainous. In addition, the roads are treacherous and unmarked - full of blind curves and more. It took us what felt like ages to reach our condo on Cowpet Bay (the eastern tip of the island), but once we arrived it was worth it. The view was breathtaking - overlooking a bay full of sailboats with more islands in the distance. Gorgeous. Even though the tradewinds had brought in some Sahara dust that left the sky hazy, we spent the week lazing in the sun, snorkeling thanks to a tour of the neighboring islands on the boat the Daydreamer (our favorite activity of the week), drinking too many rum concoctions and adult milkshakes from Udder Delite at Magen's Bay (our second favorite activity, natch), relaxing and just enjoying being together. Few places are more peaceful or beautiful than the Virgin Islands.