September 19, 2014

The Life List.

The other day I did the stereotypical "girl-in-her-early-twenties" thing to do; I went to Barnes & Noble, skimmed the Fiction shelves for a book I've never heard of written by an author I've never heard of. Underneath the "Sparks, Nicholas" section (are we surprised I was even in that area?), I found a book by Lori Nelson Spielman.

I pick it up and look over the summary on the back page.
Hmmm... The Life List...
sounds deep...
sounds intriguing...
sounds motivational, just what I need!

I open it to the "About the Author" page.
Hmm..."a native of Michigan, Lori lives with her husband and a very spoiled cat."
YES. I want her life! I have a husband, now all I need is a cat. A spoiled cat...preferably a black and white that looks like he's wearing an eternal tuxedo.
"'The Life List' is her first novel."
OOoo! Her very first published novel? I'd love to support that.

Now to further prove my stereotypical "girl-in-her-early-twenties" activity, I picked the book off of the shelf, determined to indulge in it, and waiting in line at the Starbucks for my Pumpkin Spiced Latte. Yes, I am one of those, and yes, I am unashamed.

I sat down and ended up reading to chapter 7! This isn't very much (the chapters are quite short). See, I have a horrible habit of impatiently skimming through books just so I can feel productive with my time. I regrettably do not actually take the time to sound out every word and grasp at their true meanings. So this time around, I wanted to feel what the protagonist is feeling. So that's what I did; I read at a relaxed pace, and I enjoyed the book even more than I expected to!

I absolutely adore Lori's writing style. It's such witty english, and the main character is so overdramatic with her thoughts that I feel like I relate to her.
I even wrote down some of my favourite lines from the book:

"I'd wake the next morning to find ribbons of amber streaming through my lace curtains." Ribbons, amber, and lace! What a gorgeous picture this paints!

"She's left me her champagne for today, and a sliver of her life, her inner thoughts and musings, for tomorrow." It sounds metaphorical, but her mother really did leave her ridiculously expensive bottle of champagne and her journal to her daughter.

"Soothing lucidity..." I am in love with this phrase. There really is comfort in seeing things clearly.

"A dull ache kicks at my temples." This occurs to me at least once a day. Ohh the stress.

"Teetering on the edge of composure." This is also me. I was even tempted to change the subtitle of my blog to this, but I decided I'd better leave the Bible verse there. Rarely I feel like I'm in control of the lovely state of "composure".

"A lump rises in my throat and I swallow it down with a gulp of coffee." Yup. Don't need to say any more here.

"The proverbial bed they've chosen to lie in is sumptuous and cozy, while mine is lumpy and teeming with bedbugs." I frequently feel this way when I'm comparing my friends lives' with mine; everyone else's life looks comfortable and extravagant, and mine looks "lumpy and teeming with bed bugs", as one might say. Granted, I see others' lives safely from the outside, and I see mine, well, from the inside (gruesome details and all!).

"Why is it that you feel unworthy of your own dreams?" This saddens me, because everyone has felt this way at least one time in their life. We were made in the image of Christ...He has given us these amazing skills and desires...why do we feel so unworthy that we bury our gifts in the ground?

"Where did she go, that fearless, self-assured girl who loved to entertain?...Where did she go? She went where every little girl with big dreams goes. She grew up. She got real." Sometimes I wonder these same things about myself. What is it about life that decides to just put a halt on our dreams? I remember in my first year of University I wanted to be a journalist, but somehow I couldn't make it past the first class. I had that weird feeling in the pit of my stomach, telling me that something just wasn't right. So I got a 2-year Social Sciences degree. Then I quickly realized I had bills to pay, and couldn't easily get a job with that, so I pursued Culinary. I'm super excited to put this education to use (once my Work-Visa comes though, that is), because it's a total blessing to have a job that you love, which also pays the bills. I'm not sure where I was going on this "rabbit trail" of a ramble, but I do know that I do not regret giving up the journalist dream. Even though life is hard and incredibly uncertain right now, I like where I am at. I cherish my education and all the things I have learned, and I love being married and basking in this not-being-able-to-work-right-now stage of my life. My sister put it in such a different light: you have the rest of your life to work, why not enjoy this while you can?

Anyways, I'm not even half-way done "The Life List" yet, but I can't wait to continue reading it.

XoXo Jenny

September 18, 2014

This Day in September!

Yes! This is me. This photo was taken yesterday, for no reason at all. Sometimes, when I have time, I like to curl my hair, put on a nice shirt (my husband likes polka-dots and my Mom always told me..."Jennifer, I think red is definitely your colour"), and take photographic evidence of all my hard labour. (I hope and pray you sense the sarcasm in that last sentence)

Grey's Anatomy. This show has been around since 2005, since I was 14 years old. Since it's existence, throughout my entire middle school, high school, and college years I have refused to watch it. I was never into the whole medical drama thing. I mean, an entire show that takes place inside of a hospital? I'm sure one can only watch so many heart transplants, blood transfusions, and scenes of body excrements spewing out EVERYWHERE...right? WRONG. This show is fascinating!!! The minds of surgeons and their surgical interns are ones that I will never understand. They are absolutely insane, completely and totally nuts...but we need them. What would the world do without these people who get an adrenaline rush from operating inside of a human body? I love this show because it's the perfect balance of suspenseful, serious drama, romance, and comedy. It makes me laugh (OUT LOUD, mind you), makes me cry, and makes me thankful for the absolute insanity called life that doctors/nurses endure every. single. day. Thank you for doing the job that I could NEVER be able to handle. A big shoutout goes to:

Thank you Netflix for allowing me to watch unearthly long hours of Grey's Anatomy episodes back to back with no commercials. And then there's that love-hate thing of automatically continuing on to the next episode without my permission. Tsk tsk.

Lecrae's newest album, Anomaly, is amazing. It's so awesome to see a Christian artist earn #1 on the Billboard 200. His lyrics are incredible, so honest, and raw. One of my favourite songs from the album, called "The Good, Bad, Ugly", is where he shares some pretty heavy things about his past; in verse one he shares how in high school he and his girlfriend had an abortion ("So I dropped her off at that clinic
That day, a part of us died"), and then in verse two he admits that his babysitter molested him when he was just 8 years old ("Told me to keep that secret safe
How a young boy supposed to deal
I'm tryna act like it ain't real
Had my innocence just stripped from me")

Those two things are the things that breaks my heart the most...and I know way too many people who have experienced such things. It just shouldn't be this way. What an ugly world we live in...but there is hope! Satan likes to make us believe that we are alone in our sins, that if people found out, our lives would be ruined. But God encourages us to confess our sins to each other, to pray for each other, because truly there is strength in numbers...and chances are high that we are all going through the same "crap".  Lecrae ends that song with: "And only God can help me get free
But I've been forgiven, my Savior risen
I'm out the prison, I know that
I got the power to say to no to all of my struggles
God will control that
Every time we slip and we fall
Gotta get back up and fight on
We are not defined by our past
The future look bright, I see the light on."

This early afternoon it was pouring rain outside. I only love the rain when I have no place to be but inside my apartment, warm and dry, smelling like sweet cinnamon pumpkins. :)

September 13, 2014

Flaws & Strengths.

The Greatest of Flaws Within Me:

I find it so hard to trust people. We all have our hidden agendas. You are only inviting me because you'll then conveniently have a ride--You are only talking to me so you can meet your social goals, ect.

If I feel a heartbreak coming on, I'm going to make sure it's your heart breaking before you have a chance to break mine. I am a fighter. Not physically or verbally, but mentally. I build up my iron walls and then fire out my passive aggressive shots. I will ignore you and avoid you until you cave. 

I am a jealous person. It is a conscious and continuous effort for me to get to the point of being genuinely happy for someone.

I am uncomfortable with myself and the personality that I own. There is always a quality or a trait in somebody I meet, that I wish I had in me. This goes back to the jealousy issue.

I am a ball of worries. A giant ball of stress. I am a bomb of anxiety ready to explode. Yes I cast all of my cares upon Jesus, but I still worry.

The Greatest of Strengths Within Me:

I am never too prideful or too afraid to write out a long, detailed text to a friend asking them for prayer. Every girl needs prayer warriors in her life who can pray specific things for them.

When I think of past memories, my "socio-emotional selectivity" kicks into full force, and I only remember the good things. It takes effort for me to remember the bad. (This can also act as a flaw, in that if my present life isn't going the way I wish it were, I can spend hours dwelling in memories of the past)

I would rather talk about you and what is going on in your life, than talk about me.

I love to live out my gift of hospitality. I love having people over, feeding them, providing them with drinks to quench their thirst, giving them a blanket if they're cold, and just making them feel comfortable.

I trust God. I fear, I worry, I complain, I cry, I get anxious, I get stressed, I get overwhelmed, I get scared, I say that I don't feel like God is here...but deep down, I do trust that God is the saviour of this world. It is the one thing I am sure of. He is the one CERTAIN thing in this UNCERTAIN world.

How I Feel...