My Author Shoot

I had my friend Jovanna Penney take some pictures of me for my book and blog and stuff and whatever. She’s really great. You should look up her stuff on Facebook.

I usually like most photos of myself, let’s be honest, but here are some of my favorites:

Brick wall - leaning 3
Hanging out by a brick wall, like the cool kids.

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My Level of Love

I ran across a blog post today, that definitely resonated with me. Several parts of it elicited some “Mmmm hmmm”s and “You go, girl”s.

The author, Joi Weaver, tells her story of being a 33-year-old who has never been kissed and shares the social struggles that accompany virginity. I blogged about virginity a couple of years ago, as well as some themes she highlights in her story.

For instance, here is one paragraph I can definitely relate to:

[Singleness is] not my preferred choice, but I’m not going to fling myself at someone out of desperation. This sense of acceptance comes and goes. There are days when I’m tempted to run outside and proposition the first man I can find. But most days, I just accept that this is my reality right now, and change will not happen quickly or easily. Regardless, the frustration lingers: I would have liked it to be a real choice, not a matter of mere acceptance.

(Even though I have had the chance to say, “Yes,” to a couple of different men who were interested in me, it still feels like I haven’t had a choice because those men were not good for me, nor I for them. It wasn’t a choice of singleness or a great marriage; it was a choice between singleness and a bad relationship – and therefore not much of a choice at all.)

Miss Weaver goes on to tell Read More

My Valentine’s Musings

I’ve blogged before about how much I love Valentine’s Day, but I don’t think I’ve mentioned how much I love my birthday. I love other people’s birthdays, too, but I LOVE my birthday. I celebrate all month.

Early in February, I threw a little birthday party for myself. I invited all my friends in San Diego to come to lunch on Super Bowl Sunday – after church, but before the game. I had 20-25 people RSVP, and I reserved tables at a local restaurant.

I know to hold RSVP’s loosely – especially in San Diego, and especially since most of the people on the guest list were from my old church (which is notoriously bad with RSVPs). But even I was surprised when only 10 people besides me showed up. Literally half of the people who said they were coming wound up not coming, and some of them didn’t even text to say sorry. They simply didn’t show. Read More

My Take on Everything

I follow other singleness blogs online (because that’s apparently what you’re supposed to do when you blog about singleness), and I read a post earlier this month that got me thinking.

An anonymous blogger wrote a post called, “Is Jesus Enough?” She explores this question and then concludes that He is not enough because He is not everything. She writes:

Christians get married because they want to feel loved and share in companionship. Christians have children because they want to pass on their love, have a human to own and care for, to pass on their legacy and expand their family. Christians maintain close contact with family and friends to build support. Christians touch, hug and make physical contact with others to feel human interactions. Christian couples show intimacy just because it feels good. Christians work for and buy nice things to have a sense of accomplishment and enjoy various comforts from their labour. In other words, we have wants and needs that the love or belief in Jesus is not always able to fill and there is nothing wrong with accepting that fact.

I understand where she’s coming from, and I’ve gone through phases (sometimes for years) in which I’ve doubted that Jesus could be enough for me.

But over the past few years, I’ve changed the way I use that word “enough.” I posit that the blogger mentioned above is actually saying Read More

Just for Fun – A Letter to My Future Husband

To my future husband, on Jan 2, 2016:

I missed you today.

I took down Christmas decorations this evening with my roommate, and I packed them up after she left for work. Another year of un-decorating with a roommate, of taking down the lights that were only lit half the time because neither of us was home much. It was our fourth Christmas together, but I never thought I’d have four Christmases with the same roommate before I had four with a husband.

Afterward, I sat on the couch, watching reality television because there’s literally nothing left on my to-do list. It’s moments like these when I miss you the most – when I’m caught up on all my editing jobs and household chores and TV shows. When I’ve read more than my eyes can handle in one day and have some time left before I head to bed.

I finished my show, turned to the other end of the couch, and almost asked you if you were ready to hit the hay, when I realized you weren’t there. And I missed you.

I tried to distract myself for a moment, but I had to put down Facebook because there were too many happy couples and newborn babies, and it made me sad.

Over the past few years, I’ve been training myself to turn to Jesus instead of to wallowing when I feel sad.  I guess the training paid off tonight, because I talked to Jesus about you. “God, I miss my man tonight. I don’t know how it’s possible to miss someone I’ve never met, but I feel his absence.”

The truth, though, is that I do know how it’s possible to miss someone I’ve never met. Adam missed Eve before he knew she was even possible. I sometimes miss a particular sibling who was miscarried. I always miss heaven, especially now that I have loved ones there. Ultimately, all that missing leads me to look forward to the physical presence of my heavenly husband Jesus. Read More

My Future Wonderings

 

My Future Wonderings.jpg
Photo credit: Noel Walker Photography

I’ve been thinking about the future (as one does, this time of year), and it’s ever so slightly depressing because if the future is anything like the present, it will involve more waiting.

And waiting sucks.

“Wait” is pretty much my least favorite word, like, ever. I think the hardest thing lately about waiting on God, waiting to find out about a job, waiting to see my family again, waiting for a husband, etc. is the wondering.

I get into “wondering spirals” in which I wonder what my future man will be like; what our story will be; if I will be a bridezilla; what my wedding will look like; if my marriage will be happy; what it will be like to live with a man; what kissing and sex are like; which parenting techniques I’ll take from my mom and which ones will be different; if my husband and I will still be attracted to each other when we’re old and frumpy.

Wonder, wonder, wonder. Any ONE of those things can make me spiral for hours. I’ve probably lost several cumulative months of my life just to the wondering about the future.

I texted a friend who got married recently and said, “One of the best things about being married has got to be that you don’t have to wonder anymore.”

Sometimes, I feel a responsibility to the wondering – like if I don’t wonder about it, I won’t be prepared for it, and Read More

My Best Friend’s Wedding

Last week, I got to be part of the wedding of one of my best friends in Oregon (I have a few best friends, so don’t get any wrong ideas, other best friends).

Emily and I have known each other for about 10 years, so helping with wedding prep and MC-ing her reception were really fun and special and meaningful. After her wedding to Sam, I had an especially sappy moment and wrote her a letter. Here it is, except for a bit that was meant just for me and her.


Nov 22, 2015

Dear Emily,

Today is the day after your wedding, so I thought I’d finally write your card. (I like that we’re the kind of friends who give gifts and cards randomly, instead of on special days.)

This past week, I’ve been getting kind of nostalgic about our friendship, remembering the dinners we’ve had, the dreams we’ve shared, the weddings we’ve planned. Most of all, I remember getting together every week for a couple of years for Bible study, just the two of us. Bible study, or – as we often called it – “talking about Jesus and boys.”

[paragraph removed]

At the time, you and I were in our mid-to-late 20’s, and we both loved weddings. I remember hours and hours spent planning our weddings, other people’s weddings, and our future relationships. Yes, we planned our relationships – and even sketched out ideas of our ideal men.

But we didn’t just talk about it, Read More

My Unintended Success

I grew up in “poverty.” I never felt impoverished or marginalized, and we always had a place to live and meals to eat; but with so many (six) brothers and sisters, my dad in a ministry job, and my mom staying at home, there were many, many things we couldn’t afford, and the government said we were in “poverty.”

I realized early on that if I wanted stuff, I was going to have to pay for it. I started my first job when I was 9 years old, and I started buying all my own “extras” when I was 12. With each new job, I got paid more than the last, until here I am now – making more money with my one job than my dad does with three or four now, affording new dresses and movie tickets and Christmas gifts and plane tickets with minimal budgeting. If I had to, I could support a small family (probably – I’ve never tried).

In my 20’s, reveling in my independence and the amenities I could afford (amenities that my parents never could), I started to resent the fact that I might have to give it all up one day in order to be a stay-at-home mom. I LIKE shopping when I feel like it. I LIKE going out to dinner with friends or alone. I LIKE traveling to see friends or family out of state on short notice.

It actually quite stressed me out to think that someday I might have to give up my amenities in order for a husband to support me. I’d torture myself with thoughts like: What if he doesn’t make as much as I do now? What if he makes what I do, but we have to support two adults and a couple of kids on that salary? What if I can’t afford to go shopping and have to wear the same clothes for a couple of years?!  I DON’T WANT TO LOOK LIKE A HOMESCHOOL MOOOOOOOOM.

Even as I’d think these things, Read More

My Emotional Month

This week, I re-read my post on being in limbo, and I had to chuckle to myself because of everything that has happened since then.

When I got back from Europe about a month ago, my bosses announced that my job will soon be based out of a different city – over an hour away from my house (in no traffic, so it would be an even longer commute during my normal traffic times).

After the craziness of planning/coordinating two weddings back-to-back and a Europe trip on their heels, all I really wanted to do was be settled down. I just wanted to put my feet up, work on my Blithe Book, and start putting money back into my savings account.

God, though, had other plans. When my bosses made their decision, I knew I had one to make as well – do I move closer to work to keep my job and miss out on the life I’ve built for myself in El Cajon? Or do I find a new job to keep my church and miss out on my accrued vacation days and everything else?

After about a month of soul-searching, dramatic conversations with my mom, less-dramatic conversations with the leaders of my church, and nearly constant weighing of my options, I decided to move (with my current roommate) closer to work. Which means I’ll be leaving the church that captured my heart the moment I walked in three years ago. Which also means I have to pack up my apartment AND my office. At the same time. Yippee. Read More

My Roommate’s Wedding

Photo Credit: Noel Walker Photography

On Tuesday, I wasted a lot of time.

On Tuesday, my roommate got married. I was in charge of decorating the reception, and I had every hour of the day sketched out in my head.

None of it was supposed to be wasted.

A lot of it was.

It started with the centerpieces. They were supposed to have wheatgrass growing lusciously in them, but it was clear from a couple of days in advance that the wheatgrass was going to be more straggly than luscious.

On Monday, I went to Home Depot and explored my options, took pictures of different foliage to replace the wheatgrass, priced out ideas, etc. I discussed the centerpieces with the appropriate parties, made sure I had enough cash in my wallet, and checked to see what time Home Depot opened in the morning.

I was up past 10 pm on Monday because of rehearsal and ceremony decorating, and then I got up at 6 am on wedding day to go buy sod.

Neither of my thumbs is green (which is partly why I was in this predicament in the first place, let’s be honest), so I was just sure Read More