Friday, December 12, 2008

old men...

are awkward... They just say weird things and that's all there is to it. I guess the setting of "church christmas party right after you get engaged" could have contributed to the rather large number of times I had to do the: "nod/laugh/smile and maybe they'll think you know what they're talking about" thing... but there was free food there and so what if old men seem strange, they're wives can cook!

Monday, December 8, 2008

I'm getting MARRIED!!

Only 187 more days!!


here's the story:
Back in October of 2006, Joe and I went on a couple of first dates… one to the levee to watch the stars, were we talked all night and another with some friends to a train bridge, where we technically trespassed…. But it was really fun, and the bridge was our “actual” first date.
So on Friday we were going on a date just to the levee… or so I thought…
We got to the levee and had been there about 10 minutes and the following conversation takes place:
JOE: “Jess, have you ever heard Madison (Joe’s bff) rap?”
JESS: “um, no.”
JOE: “I have a recording of it and I want you to hear it… aw man I left my recorder at the bridge”
JESS: “Well, lets go get it!”
JOE: “Ok we’ll be spontaneous and go get it”

At this point I am completely believing the story and remain totally oblivious…

We get to the bridge, Joe pulls his recorder out of his pocket and puts it on the ground when I wasn’t looking then said, “hey I found it.”
I walk over to where he is and he says, “So it’s actually not Madison on this recorder…”
He pressed play and it was our song…. At this point I think I finally realized what was about to happen, Joe said some more really sweet things, that I can’t quite remember, and the next thing I know he got down on one knee, and I think I said, “YEAH!!”

I was completely shocked and oh so excited!! So much so that a few seconds later Joe had to say, “So, do you want to put the ring on?” I did, I loved it, and it fit perfectly!
Then Joe says, “now, no one knows about this and I have one more surprise, so lets wait to call people for just a minute.” He then blind folded me, and we drove to his sister’s house where he had planned a surprise engagement party! Our family and roommates were all there, and the night could not have been more perfect!!




June 13, 2009 is the big day! Everyone save the date!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

giving thanks


I have many things to be thankful for!
1. family
2. board games
3. Joe Handy!
4. really yummy food
5. really good friends
6. coffee
7. only two more tests left to take
8. pretty weather
9. Christmas time!
10. Jesus who loves me and never lets go!


Saturday, November 22, 2008

mmm... the fray

These guys have been one of my favorite bands for a long while, for many reasons...
They are coming out with a new cd in February, and if you want your ears to be really happy with you then I suggest purchasing it! Here's the single called 'you found me'.


The Fray - You Found Me Viral Video



"There's some difficult circumstances that can be overwhelming. It wears on me. It demands so much of my faith to keep believing, keep hoping in the unseen. Sometimes the tunnel has a light at the end, but usually they just look black as night. This song is about that feeling, and the hope that I still have, buried deep in my chest." -- Issac

Monday, November 17, 2008

happiness is...

driving to wal-mart at about 10:30 p.m., in your pj's, with the coolest girls ever created, in order to purchase a Christmas tree on November 16... I really think having it in the living room helps me study... well maybe not... On another happy note I finished my HUGE paper (3 days early mind you) and only have 3 more days of clinic, 2 more days of lecture, and a few tests!! I think I'm going to make it out of my first semester of nursing school!! Thank you Jesus!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Monday, October 27, 2008

playing on repeat...



Joe got this for me and it is such a great CD... very chill and, I find, good for studying... which I need to do more of now, so goodbye!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

i'm not sure...

but, I think this is what it's all about...







I got a chance to go with a small group of folks from ULM to a children's home last week, and these are the pictures from that visit.

I feel selfish almost every time I go there, just because of how much I get from being around those kids. These sweet girls give of their love so freely and have so much of it to give, despite what I can only imagine they've been through...
Thank you God for bringing joy to our lives, no matter what.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

the shack..

is a good book... I'm not quite through reading it, but today I read this and thought it was so good!! At this point in the story God (as portrayed by a 'large beaming African American woman' who goes by Papa)  is talking to a man named Mack and Papa says:

"All I want from you is to trust me with what little you can, and grow in loving people around you with the same love I share with you. It's not your job to change them, or to convince them. You are free to love without an agenda."

Saturday, October 11, 2008

just listen...

I came across this video today (while I should have been studying)... the pictures are kind of strange, but it is one of my favorite songs, sung by one of my favorite singers, Sufjan Stevens...


Thursday, October 9, 2008

surprise visits to BR..

Mom and I drove down to Baton Rouge yesterday because my little brother broke his scaphoid bone in his wrist last week.. in a bike accident... this bone needed surgery to fix, so he had the surgery today. It went great, and he's doing good now. And though I'm not happy about Mike's misfortune, I love getting to hang out with him and sweet Bec, and my family.



Mike showed me this really funny 'Smothers Brothers' clip, it's so worth watching!!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

iMix

I should definitely be studying right now. Tomorrow I have the last of a series of about 7 test/projects that have been my life for the past week and a half... but I'm pretty much out of study gas... Plus I figured out how to make this cool thing called an iMix... these are just a few of my favorite songs right now, and you can sample them, or if you like buy the whole mix... I promise they are all great songs!
Fall break begins at 4 tomorrow... I am so excited I can barely contain myself...

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Straw paper is more important than you think...


This past weekend I spent a wonderful couple of days with some cool friends and my family in BR. On saturday a bunch of kids from the BCM went out to do some hurricane relief work. Jenn, Hannah and I went to help clean up some sticks with these two men (we called them Brian and Joe in 50 years). They were so fun, and so strong in the Lord... and they were by no means young bucks, but they sure could run a chain saw!!  oh, and I made a sweet new friend named Marty!! 

Sunday I went to a Jazz brunch (fancy huh?!) with my lovely grandparents, Mikey, and Bec. Then Sunday night we went to eat at P.F. Changs... it was GREAT.... if you don't mind a semi-creepy dude coming by every 10 minutes or so to pick up your straw paper... and nothing else.... It was one of the strangest things I've ever seen..... He really did walk by 3 times and just pick up straw paper... not empty sugar packets, not used dishes... He was a one type of trash man... but I do need to say, he did a good job. After the second time he came by we found another straw and purposefully put the paper in the middle of the table and sure enough, he came and got that thing!! There was much laughter... My dad says he feels like a bandit when we all get to spend time together... I do too... We love each other... I am gushing and I'll stop now... I mean it though. 

I also got some really really great news this morning... I not sure I can talk about it here.... but just let me say that the Lord is so faithful... He never fails us.... NEVER! 

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Saturday, September 6, 2008

i love...

FALL!! the CD by Jon Foreman, and the season by God. I've decided 78 degrees is my favorite temperature. I think today has been the prettiest all year. I am so thankful to God for this.

"Oh the Glory of it all is: he came here For the rescue of us all that we may live"

Monday, September 1, 2008

teamwork

Today Gustav came. My family still had a good bit of corn left in the field that was ready to pick, so we ran late last night and started early this morning. Our friends the Carroll's and Moroni's came to help us today and we got a lot of it picked before getting rained out. I know that today many people were worried about their homes and families, so I say this cautiously, but today was cool to me. It was cool to see so many folks willing to help us, and everyone pulling together. I'm praying for all my south Louisiana friends and I hope that they will be able to see something cool and good come from the storm like I have.

on a much lighter note: this is what your hair looks like after running around outside in a hurricane

and I don't mind being stuck inside sometimes... especially when little bear is home!
I'm so happy that God is in control and not me. He's good all the time.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

one week of nursing school down...

and I think I'm going to make it! I love it so far! I also love Jesus...
The End

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

...

“Goodness and love are as real as their terrible opposites, and, in truth, are far more real, though I say this mindful of the enormous evils like Nazi Germany. But love is the final reality; and anyone who does not understand this, be he writer or sage, is a man flawed in wisdom”
-Sheldon Vanauken

Monday, June 30, 2008

Eh?

Some dang Canadian kids stole my heart!!






Just look at them! They really are adorable inside and out! I love them so much! So, I guess needless to say I had a great time in Canada!

This is kinda old news but I wanted to tell you guys, sweet Hannah and I went to Lake Charles weekend before last to meet up with the beautiful SBJ. We had a garage sale to raise money to get some things for a few of the people we met on our trip to Honduras. With about 10 garbage bags of junk and a couple hours we made $500!!! It was so much fun and the Lord really blessed us! We also met this really sweet lady who had a lot of Spanish/English teaching materials she wanted to give us when she found out what we were doing. We were planning on trying to purchase some stuff like that anyway, but we weren't sure we would be able to find any, or how expensive it would be. So we were so pumped that she GAVE us 3 boxes FULL of really good stuff. Maybe the best part was just how happy she was to give it to us. God does such cool stuff.

Hannah took some pictures, and she might put some up on her blog if you want to check it out just click here.

Friday, June 27, 2008

juat a little something

So, I leave today with my sweet friend Hannah to head to Lake Charles to be reunited with the lovely SBJ (extreme excitement) and we'll return on Sunday afternoon, just in time for my Sunday night report at church. So, I was forced to have this slide show complete 3 days early!! And here it is. There *may also be a video coming soon... we'll see about that.
Enjoy!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

oh, hello!

I'm home! This past week has been just wonderful running around, getting some nursing school and new apartment stuff done, and spending some time with the ones I love most! I miss the slower pace of Honduras, and the people there, but I can't lie, it is great to be home! I'll be giving a report this Sunday night at my church, FBC Wisner. I will also keep blogging some follow up/recap stuff, and some other stuff.. just about life in general.

Thank you all so much for your prayers and support! I love you so!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

electricidad... NADA!

I am writing this from the hospital cafeteria to inform you that our house lost electricity... so this will be a short post... if you want to know more about this situation read JESS´S BLOG

We had a great last day at El Por Venir with a new cute little lady nurse who still wears one of those little hats that looks like this.

She taught us a lot and let us do everything! I gave more shots than I could count today, and fell in love with a little boy named Christopher. He had to have 3 shots bless his heart, and I got to hold his hand and try to distract him by making a fool of myself... but I loved it! I think I discovered today that I am really going to enjoy pediatrics!

We leave for Lake Yajoa (pronounced ja-hoa) in the morning and then I fly on saturday! My next post will most likely be from the states!!!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

snotty doctor...

Here is a video we made on Tuesday, slightly late due to technical difficulties...
Let me just say, I love inside jokes, and I've decided to let you guys in on one. Youtube is an amazing invention, with lots of laughter to be found there.. the first of the two videos, I did not make, but it is a family favorite (as in we quote it VERY often). The second I made while thinking of this first video, in hopes of making my family laugh... enjoy!





now my version with a little update...

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Laughter...

We had a lot of it today...
It was our last day with the mobile clinic and we were there from 7-3. It was our longest day, but really fun.... We got done around 11 or 12 but the dentist had more patients, so there was a lot of sitting and talking and joking, and not that I could understand any of it, but when other people laugh, I laugh too... regardless of language.

Then I had a kind of surreal moment on the way home...
I'm in Central America, sitting in this beast of an 'ambulance', white knuckles on the seat in front of me because of the crazy, but trustworthy, man with a sideways straw hat on, who just referred to himself as Jack Sparrow... Jon Foreman, Anberlin, and Backstreet Boys playing on my iPod... sitting beside a hott lady dentist and across from snotty/sometimes grateful/money-taker lady, Rosalee, and Jess, who has been such an amazing friend through all of this... all the while only a second away from a mild heart attack, and in complete awe of the amazing scenery around me God crafted with his own hands... plus there are about 50 bananas in the seat beside me...

How can I not praise the Lord? He has brought me to the strangest places and situations and given me this peace that is absolutely inexplicable, and shown me so much and taught me so much and loved me so much... My descriptions will never do these past weeks justice, I can't say that enough, and I can't say enough about Him... I just can't.

It's weird that I will be home in 4 days... I have been so happy during my time here and I'm excited about the next four days... but I love me some Wisner/Monroe Louisiana, and I'll be positively jubilant to be home.









"Laugh at yourself, but don't ever aim your doubt at yourself. Be bold. When you embark for strange places, don't leave any of yourself safely on shore. Have the nerve to go into unexplored territory." --Alan Alda

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Panes

A mountain top experience... Literally!

Today we went to the village of Panes (pronounced pon-nes). Jennifer and Osmany have been serving there for the past 3 years. They are making plans right now to build a church there. How exciting!

We haven't been able to go there until today, and if I'm honest, I wasn't too excited about going. The prospect of sitting in Spanish church didn't do it for me! Jess also told me how beautiful the drive was, and all I can thing is "yeah, yeah more mountains... great." We also stopped to pick up some 'thugs' I would call them, but I guess every man in Honduras just carries a machete... still this did not excite me... So needless to say I wasn't going into this with a great attitude.

Well...

Let me just say, God can knock you off you're feet, when you get like that... and fast. Literally, I had been there for maybe 5 minutes, when one of the little boys kicked a soccer ball at me and I ran to get it and tripped on a rock... and fell in the dirt... I really fell. No injuries, except my pride. I got up and realized Osmany was just going to meet with the town leaders and Jess and I were going to play with kids... Still a little skeptical, I stood over to the side for a little while, and soon found myself surrounded by 9 little girls throwing a frisbee, which I am not good at, but it was really fun, and they laughed at me... I didn't mind! These we some of the most cheerful girls I had seen in any village, with the exception of one. Clara, was her name. She quietly walked over to us as we were playing and just stood to the side. She played a little, then just stood. She was probably 7 years old, but I just couldn't help but wonder what she had seen or been through that would cause her to not be happy and playful like these other girls. I can't really explain the effect meeting this little girl had on me, I just thought about her a lot on the drive home, which was one of the most beautiful scenes I've seen here and, in my life, for that matter. I didn't take many pictures, which is kind of fitting, because I'm not sure it would do it justice. God just never ceases to amaze me.

Also on the way home we stopped to visit the family of a little boy named Lucas. He was in a wheel chair and had some severe medical problems, but his, and the whole family's sweet spirit spoke louder than any of the words they were saying that I could not understand. I have so much, and have been so richly blessed... and I think too often I thank God for the things he has given me and the blessings, when I should just praise Him for who He is.

Here are just a few pictures...

Where we played frisbee


The beautiful drive home


The girls I played with all morning...


Sweet, beautiful girls



This was my favorite place by far...

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Honduran road trip!

This has been a weekend filled with fun and relaxation. We left early Thursday morning for Copan, Honduras, where the largest Mayan Indian settlement is found. Visiting the Mayan ruins was so fun and Copan was a beautiful city, but the part I enjoyed the most was hanging out with a few of my favorite people!

On the way, bright and early!


To pass the time on the drive we took lots of pictures!


...and lots of naps!



...and got to look at some really beautiful scenery!



When we arrived in Copan that evening we just walked around the town a bit and then went out to eat that night... All the streets of Copan are cobble stone and so cool!


Rebeca can be a bit moody at times, so we had a saying for the trip: "In Copan, we do what Bec says!" and she said to put our fingers in our ears, so we did of course!


She's also not so fond of shoes, I'm not sure I know a 3 year old who is, but the ground was a bit though on her feet, so I let her borrow mine... I wasn't sure I would ever get them back, and honestly, I probably would not have minded... I'm a sucker for her, that's for sure!



Me and Jess at the ruins, it was a perfect day!





I'm not exactly sure what this is a picture of, but I think it's like the main arena where they had all of the sporting events.


Another View, with the 'hermosa' (beautiful) mountains in the background


We thought the ruin man looked a little sad, se we decided to try and cheer him up ; )


Summer siblings...


The ruins had beautiful grass lawns, perfect for frolicking- so I brought Hannah along (represented by the piece of paper)

more ruins, and such a beautiful day!



This reminded me of gladiator... 5 people stood on each of the slanted parts and threw a large stone ball from side to side, If they hit one of the stone heads, a member of the other team had to be sacrificed... Yikes!


We like to play!



The following are yet another attempt to take some cool jumping pictures and the reason why Jess and I have sore legs and booties today...




Success!!


My amazing family for the summer: Osmany, Jenn, Becita, and Me



After the ruins we did some shopping and went out to eat again, really yummy Honduran food... I think I'm addicted to it! We left Copan this morning and headed to the airport to pick up two sweet girls, Jamie and Sarah, who will be staying with us this week, my LAST week! We'll still be working in the clinic in the mornings and then helping them with a VBS in the afternoons. It should be a fun last week.

I miss everyone so so much and I will be home so soon, I can feel it! These past few weeks have absolutely flown by. I have learned, experienced, and been exposed to so much, and the God of the universe has taught me more than I ever expected, and held me close. I'm sure my explanations will never do it justice!