Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

My office celebrated today with a little costume competition. Here are the participants below:(a cowboy, pj's, a partially-ready bride [note the veil], Jim from the Office [only he copped out, just like the real Jim did last night...and he wore a name tag that said "Hello, my name is Dave"...his name is really Josh], and Ben dressed as Josh)
And just for the record, I won this year! The winning costume....a Q-tip. What were your costumes this year?

Thursday, October 30, 2008

A Wonderful Weekend

Sorry for that little hiatus there - I get so busy reading other people's blogs that I forget to update my own sometimes! I did want to share about the fabulous weekend I was able to share with some of my very favorite people (sorry, but I'm allowed to be biased when it comes to family). Last Thursday evening, Mom, Paige, Torri, Kelsey & Brent all descended upon our lovely new home in Nashville and we were able to spend 3+ delightful days together.

For those of you who don't know, Paige & Torri are basically like my little sisters. My Mom stayed at home with my sister & I until we went to school when she started babysitting full-time in our home. Paige started coming when she was just 6-weeks old, and two years later Torri followed suit. Now, 16 years later (are you really 16, Paige? I still can't quite believe that!), they're pretty much family and we can't really imagine what life would be like without the Blythes. Needless to say, I was THRILLED when Mom told me there was a chance that she might be able to come visit...and Paige & Torri might be able to come with her! It also just so happened that Kelsey was on her fall break (or whatever they call it), so she & Brent quickly made plans to join the fun as well. Unfortunately my Dad had to work - wish you could have joined us, Buddy! Although you might have had to sleep outside...
We packed a lot into our 3 short days together - a trip to the Opry Land Hotel, some mini-golf & bumper, I mean go-karts, lots of ball games for P&T and the guys, LOTS of food, and even a quick tour of downtown Nashville including the Wild Horse Saloon (see pic below with the horse). It was wonderful to be able to have a place for everyone to stay for a few days (even if we were cozy!) and I drank up every moment we were together.

We conquered mini-golf. Brent won...and I got second (just for the record).

Hanging out at the park (Mom was apparently cold).

All the kids.

They wore him out - and that takes some energy!

We kept everyone fed.

Elvis & ????

Wild Horse Saloon

Even though I have come to love Nashville and Dan & I both know that this is where we're meant to be for right now, times like this make me long to be closer to home & those I love. But because they are few and far between, these times are incredibly precious to me and I am learning to charish the moments together that they may carry me through the hours and days and years away. Thanksgiving is just a few weeks away - I'll see you all again very soon!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Brooke Fraser - Shadowfeet

This video goes with the post below - I just can't figure out how to switch them! So go read the next post, then come back and listen to this wonderful song. No cheating!

I Had Forgotten...

How much I love this book! I stayed home from work the other day with a doozy of a cold, and since we did not yet have internet or cable hooked up in our new place, I had nothing to distract me from this fantastic story. The Great Divorce is a C.S. Lewis story about Heaven & Hell, one that I've read several times now and would probably put near the very top of my list of favorite books ever. If you've never read it, I don't want to ruin it for you, but please...go find it now. It's beautiful and thought provoking and easy to read and simply delightful.

It also reminded me how much I love Brooke Fraser and her song Shadowfeet. If you've read the book, you'll see the connections throughout. I especially love the line "But I've heard rumors of True Reality, whispers of a well-lit way." Such a beautiful picture of what we know to be true - a True Reality in Heaven that is more real than anything we could ever experience on earth! I've posted the lyrics below if you're curious:


Walking,stumbling on these shadowfeet
toward home,a land that i've never seen
I am changing: less and less asleep
made of different stuff than when i began
and i have sensed it all along
fast approaching is the day

when the world has fallen out from under me
I'll be found in you, still standing
when the sky rolls up and mountains fall on their knees
when time and space are through
I'll be found in you
Theres distraction buzzing in my head
saying in the shadows it's easier to stay
but I've heard rumours of true reality
whispers of a well-lit way

You make all things new


When the world has fallen out from under me
I'll be found in you, still standing
Every fear and accusation under my feet
when time and space are through
I'll be found in you

P.S. I can't figure out how to post the YouTube video right here, so it's in a post above this one if you're interested.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Crisis Averted

Today is Boss's Day. I stumbled upon this information earlier this week by chance and quickly alerted my coworkers who also have bosses, in order to make sure that we were all on the same page and that no one was embarrassed when one coworker showed up with a gift for their boss and they didn't have one. This was Monday. Apparently somewhere between Monday and Thursday that little tip I so kindly passed on to my colleagues completely escaped by brain and I was the brilliant employee who showed up today without a gift for my boss. Awesome.

Fortunately I discovered my dilemma soon after arriving at work and quickly ran down the hall to make sure that no one presented their boss's gift before I had mine (what am I, 12?). I then ran out the door without any sort of plan other than to find something, ANYTHING, for my boss (who, by the way, REALLY appreciates these sorts of things...). And I would like to take this opportunity to thank Kroger for carrying everything one needs in a situation like this. I grabbed a pretty bouquet, found a Thank-you card (do they make boss cards?) and some of her favorite candy and headed back to the office.

It worked brilliantly. I even found some curling ribbon somewhere buried in our supply of birthday decor, tied up the candy and delivered the gift as if it had been planned all along. My boss even told me it made her day. Like my title says...crisis averted.

By the way...when is non-boss's day? And what would you call that, anyway?

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Exploring the Natchez Trace

Dan & I had a wonderful weekend getting away and exploring a bit of the beautiful state of Tennessee. We left Saturday morning, hoping to find lots of antique shops to search through but instead we stumbled upon more yard sales than I've ever seen in one place in my entire life. I didn't get any pictures, but I was just baffled by the quantity of junk laid out for consumption. We didn't find any of the pieces we were looking for, but we did come away with a lovely rocking chair for just $25. It was a lovely addition to our camp set-up!We eventually made our way over to the Natchez Trace, which is an absolutely gorgeous drive and historical to boot (it roughly follows an old frontier road that stretched from Nashville to Natchez, Mississippi on the Gulf Coast). I remember driving a stretch of it as a kid one summer when we were on vacation. Kelsey was quite sure Dad had really gotten us lost that time, and we began to celebrate each time we saw another sign of human life (or was that the trip to Montana...). While on that trip, we stopped at the death place of Meriweather Lewis - a small cabin where he apparantly committed suicide, and a monument that now stands at his grave...morbid, I know. Well, believe it or not, there is also a campground at this historic spot, and Dan and I picked the very day of Lewis's death - 199 years later - to camp here (thanks, Dad, for filling us in on that detail). It's a little weird, I know...but hey, the campground was free!
It was a little warmer than we anticipated, but we still needed some wood. Dan found some & managed to borrow an axe, and went to town on chopping (saving a little for our new fireplace!).
As one older man walked by he commented, "It warms ya twice, doesn't it?" Fitting.I was kind of proud of the bed-making job in our tent...just thought I'd throw in a picture of my hard work too!

On Sunday, after Dan made a fabulous breakfast of bacon & eggs, we packed up and headed back North. Since we had all day, we were able to explore many of the stops along the historic route. We even made it to the falls, Dad - during daylight! Here are a few more pictures of our explorations:

The beautiful drive!

We were on a trail we thought was totally "legal"...until we found this.

A part of the original trace.

One stop included an old tobacco barn.

All in all, we had a wonderful time and enjoyed the beauty of Tennessee in the fall. Even though there was plenty of work to do at home, this really was exactly what we just take a deep breath, enjoy some time together, and be reminded of the beauty of God.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Out for the weekend...

Friday afternoon is finally here! This has been an incredibly long week, and I feel like we simply have not stopped going since we began the moving process. Anyway, we're headed out tomorrow for a nice getaway - camping & antique shopping! We're both ready to get out of the city for a bit, and you simply cannot beat this weather for camping. Should be a good time. I'll try and get some pictures up on Monday. But until this - have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Our Move - In Pictures

Finally, the camera & the chord have made it to the same place at the same time - and I have pictures to share! We are officially moved into our new place and stayed there for the first time Saturday night. And we love it! Of course, there is still lots to be done, but we're just taking it a little at a time and enjoying our new home and the abundance of space. Here are a few pictures from last week as we made the transition:
Please, come on in!

I decided on an apple green for our little breakfast nook. It turned out pretty bright, but I like it! (Dan was pretty proud of his work, as you can see)

Here is my wonderful new kitchen in looks much better than this now! I think nearly everything has found a home in this room...which wasn't too hard with all of those cabinets, and of course...

a PANTRY!!! Okay, now you may think I'm a little over excited about a closet with some shelving, but please note the photo above. I brought ALL of this from our other place. Seriously...where did I put it all?! This continues to baffle me. I mean seriously - all of my cabinets are full, too!

Here is our lovely blue wall in the living room (with the fireplace!), as well as our new furniture. I LOVE how this color turned out - it looks even better in the daylight! Our furniture is gone now - there's a long story there involving some holes & bad packaging - but we should be getting our replacements tomorrow.

Our "master" bathroom - with a garden tub! The fact that I have to put a description before the bathroom in order to differentiate from the other 2 in the house still seems crazy to me. And I really like this garden tub, as you can see :-)

Taking a break from all of the hard work for a little treat from Sonic. We'll miss having that right across the street! But I'll definitely trade that for a Walmart AND Kroger right around the corner. Yeah!

I don't really think this one even needs a caption. Although he did want to get rid of my cowboy hat. Can we take a vote on this please?

Yes, I can sleep pretty much anywhere anytime. Even on a plastic-wrapped couch in the middle of moving chaos.

Wrapping things up at our old place. As exciting as we are about the new - it was a little sad to say goodbye to our cozy little apartment. It's been a wonderful place for us these last 2 1/2 years.

Our guest bedroom - unpacking headquarters at the moment.

I have my own washer & dryer!! We bought these from some friends of ours and were able to get them in on Saturday. If you ever want to get excited about doing laundry, just spend a couple of years doing laundry in a community laundry room, and then realize that you can do your own laundry in your own home any time you want. It's pretty amazing.

Here's a view of the living room this morning - we're getting things put together bit by bit. I'll have more updates as we progress, but for now - welcome to our new home!

Monday, October 6, 2008

October 6

October 6 is a date that has been burned into my life for 9 years now. On this date in 1999, Missouri State Highway Patrolman Robert Kimberling was killed in the line of duty...but I knew him as Bob. On this date in 1999, my Dad lost his best friend, my Mom's best friend lost her husband, and 2 of my life-long friends lost their Dad.

9 years is a long time, and a lot has changed since that fateful day. But I still think about Bob often and wonder how different life would be for the Kimberling family if he were still here. I wish he could have met Dan, and I wish I could hear he & my Dad discussing the upcoming election or Dad's layoff or laughing about some bizarre arrest they made years ago. I wish...I wish life wasn't so cruel as to allow death to sneak in and snatch away those we love.

But I do know that this world is not our home, nor was it Bob's. And I know that our precious Lord never forsakes His children, even amidst such tragedies as this. Lord, bring healing and peace to Bob's family. Be especially close to Kelly, Katie & Tobi today as they remember their husband & Dad - may they find comfort in the knowledge that You have overcome & the grave is overwhelmed!

I Will Rise - Chris Tomlin

There's a peace I've come to know
Though my heart and flesh may fail
There's an anchor for my soul
I can say "It is well"

Jesus has overcome
And the grave is overwhelmed
The victory is won
He is risen from the dead

And I will rise when He calls my name
No more sorrow, no more pain
I will rise on eagles' wings
Before my God fall on my knees
And rise
I will rise

There's a day that's drawing near
When this darkness breaks to light
And the shadows disappear
And my faith shall be my eyes

Jesus has overcome
And the grave is overwhelmed
The victory is won
He is risen from the dead

And I will rise when He calls my name
No more sorrow, no more pain
I will rise on eagles' wings
Before my God fall on my knees
And rise
I will rise

And I hear the voice of many angels sing,
"Worthy is the Lamb"
And I hear the cry of every longing heart,
"Worthy is the Lamb"
And I hear the voice of many angels sing,
"Worthy is the Lamb"
And I hear the cry of every longing heart,
"Worthy is the Lamb"

And I will rise when He calls my name
No more sorrow, no more pain
I will rise on eagles' wings
Before my God fall on my knees
And rise
I will rise

From LYRICSMODE.COM lyrics archive
Song lyrics | I Will Rise lyrics

Friday, October 3, 2008

Some Random Thoughts on the Week

1. Moving in pieces is both a blessing and a curse. It's wonderful to have the time and the capability to do a little at a time, and it's much easier to be methodical about the process when you only have to do one room at a time (or one cabinet for that matter). But it's also exhausting! We've made more trips between the two places this week than I can count - and the next couple of days will probably double that number. BUT...I remember how overwhelmed I was when we loaded up the U-Haul in Iowa, knowing I had to get everything in that little trailer and it had to be packed well enough to make the trip all the way to Tennessee. Packing for a 15 minute drive really isn't so bad!

2. I don't function very well when I live in chaos. My brain has been as scattered as my possessions this week!

3. Paint really makes a place feel like your own. We've painted several walls in the new place, and I feel like it's starting to resemble our own personalities because of that. Our living room is now a beautiful colonial blue, and our kitchen is BRIGHT apple green (just one wall)...and I love it! (Pictures soon to follow...I brought my chord to work today...but forgot the camera. Once brain is a bit scattered!)

4. I had forgotten how much I like older Switchfoot music. Last night we had one little pack of old CD's, so we pulled out "The Beautiful Letdown" and blasted it for awhile while we packed. I'm pretty sure Dan knew every word...which seemed strange to me because I never remember listening to this together. It was a bit of a glimpse into the past - before we knew each other. That's always kind of a strange feeling.

5. God is so incredibly faithful. Packing has a way of bringing back every memory you've made in a place, so we've been reminiscing a bit about the 2 1/2 years spent at Trevecca. It's amazing to look back and see how far God has brought us! We took down the curtains last night and a wave of nausea hit me as I remembered walking into our apartment for the first time - and realizing how very alone we were in Nashville. Now we're able to think about all of the wonderful friends we never would have known, all of the incredible lessons learned, and the ways God used our loneliness to bind us together in those first months of marriage...none of which would have happened if we would not have moved here. The past has a way of reminding me that God really does know what's best for me.

6. I can't wait for Sunday when we close the doors to our little Trevecca apartment and finally have everything in one place again!