Tag Archives: patience

New Year, New You, New Goals, New EVERYTHING

Just kidding. I’m not an infomercial.

I’ve thought a lot about resolutions these past few days and I’ve realized they’re all a crock. Also, get out of my gym and stop buying all the produce at Sprouts you wanna-be healthy eaters.

Kidding, again. Eat more vegetables and move your butt around, it’s good for you.

So, my outlook for 2014? Uncertain. I’m excited – like the sometimes-its-hard-to-sleep-tomorrow’s-the-first-day-of-school feeling – and quietly unambitious at once. I didn’t put my finger on it until today when I read Jenny Blake’s plan for 2014 in which she quotes Lao Tzu:

Do you have the patience to wait
till your mud settles and the water is clear?
Can you remain unmoving
till the right action arises by itself?

The Master doesn’t seek fulfillment.
Not seeking, not expecting,
she is present, and can welcome all things.

Mind blown. Not seeking, not expecting. Sounds like the ultimate change from my 2013 mindset, activities and goals. I’m in. Don’t get me wrong! There are still actions I’ll take and feelings I’ll seek, including establishing a regular posting schedule for this blog, writing more, exercise, all the usual suspects. But I’m going to cease the striving to there and focus on here. Can I remain unmoving? What a great challenge – to be still, thankful and fine with what is. Sounds good to me.

One new thing this year will be Monday posts. I don’t have a super creative title for this today, but I want to share things I think are interesting with you every week. Here you go:

  • I made this pasta and I loved every moment of every spicy, creamy bite. I added in about two tablespoons of plain greek yogurt for the creamy. Everything Jessica makes eventually also gets made in my kitchen. Go try something on this blog, you will love it.
  • Guess what? Only 46 percent of us will still be working on our New Year’s Resolutions by February. And everyone wants to be skinny.
  • In addition to the supreme cold everywhere (if this is the first time you’ve been told ‘it’s cold’ today, congrats on not reading the news, being on social media or speaking to anyone), today is generally the crabbiest day of the year. Mashable gave us 24 gifs to cheer us up. I love the flirty cat.

What sounds good to you in 2014?




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#31Days: Day Twenty Three (or, the day we address delusion)

For about 18 or so months now, I’ve held firm to the belief I know who I am and how I became who I am. I reflect on major shifts, gravity drops, mountains climbed from 2010 or so to today and I think, yes those made me who I am. Those tests made me stronger, those weaknesses made me pray more.

  • Finding strength to do a strict 30 day Paleo challenge made me aware of food’s effect on my body, my emotions.
  • The bottom dropping out of my family but coming back together in a new, stitched-together, almost imperfectly perfect way made me believe in hope, how if you keep hoping – really hoping, not surface level – you find peace.
  • Settling into a routine, a life, in Dallas on my own made me realize you are never really alone if you are busy living life the way you desire.

All of this to say, I really thought I had it all figured out. I really thought “hey I’ve made it. I’m almost a quarter through this life and I know who I am and what I want and maybe I don’t get it today but I’ll get it someday. Look how adult I am.”

Two things happened:

1. I was home for a weekend in early August and stood in my old closet studying my old bulletin board. Riddled with football tickets, New Year’s Eve crowns, song lyrics I printed out on our home computer and old photos, I saw a poem written  by my sister when she was in elementary school. The point of this poem, as far as I can tell, was for her to use metaphors and she wrote it about me.

She had long brown hair
When she smiled it was so bright, you could hardly bare
Her eyes are diamonds shining bright
If you ever needed her she was strong and could put up a fight

They said she was stubborn; sure, sometimes things had to go her way
I mean, to her she was right any time of day
Her voice is a horn if things don’t fall into place!
But even if you don’t need her, she’ll come just in case

But stubborn?

To me, she was the light that led my pathway
She wanted things done right without anyone to complain
I’ve always wanted to be like her someday
Believe that I can do anything and nothing will stand in my way

So first, I’m not sure how my voice was a horn when I was 14 (or what I could be that stubborn about) but she was right. And I was floored. Here I am thinking I’ve discovered *the* secret, I’ve faced challenges and I’ve become this strong-willed person who wants things done correctly when in fact, this is who I’ve been since forever.


2.  The sermon in church one Sunday was on wrestling with God and how we won’t admit when we need help, when we’re vulnerable. We’re trained as a society – as women, especially – to be strong, to be capable. To overcome, persevere. But there was a line the sermon where I caught my breath:

 The opposite of perseverance is stubbornness. Eventually, vulnerability results in glory.

I feel I’ve been fighting a war in my head against my head for about two months. This sentence may not make sense to any of you who don’t over-analyze anything, but for those who do, you know what I mean. There is no tangible ‘problem’, there is no one event or person or thing to which I can point and say here is why I feel anxious. I can say with confidence I feel I have painted myself in a corner, have these strict rules of who I need to be, what I need to do and I give myself credit for getting to this point of “routine.”

Here’s the issue, the person I believe I became (notice a lot of “I” statements here, credit does not always belong to me but I do love to give it to me) in the past few years is the person I was a decade ago when my sister wrote a poem about me. So I have not done anything new. I’ve just accepted a few things that were already true about me. Which means I don’t have to continue to strive for anything, because I ALREADY AM THE THINGS I WANT TO BE.

More than this, I don’t have to do it all alone, it is not ON ME to construct this life. 

Sorry for yelling. Revelations don’t come quietly, it seems.



This is the twenty-third post in a series, 31 Days of 6 a.m. To see a list of all posts from the month of October, click here. If you would like to have these posts delivered directly to you, enter your email address in the form located at the top right of the home page.



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#31Days: Day Fourteen (or, the day of reckoning)

Yesterday, I went on a slight rant while talking to Kate. I was angry, there were tears. I won’t replay the entire conversation but I do know I said this:

“I’m just so tired of having something wrong in every season. There is always a thing I have to get over, embrace, be stronger or better than. I know everyone has struggles, I know there’s no such thing as a perfect life. But I just want one season where things are okay without trying so hard.”

To which she said, “Well maybe you don’t have to be strong, maybe you don’t have to wear that mask.” Which is when I realized: this isn’t about a season, or about being lonely or scared of the future. This isn’t even about hurt feelings or bad days.

This isn’t me wearing a mask. This is about accepting who I am. This is about how much I struggle against the very core of myself. It doesn’t matter what season it is, or how life looks – I will always try to find the lesson. I will always try to write it down. I will always try to make it important. I will always be strong. This is the soul of me.

And I have to stop fighting it. I have stop believing it is wrong or I’m too much or not enough. And I don’t know how.

Or, I didn’t think I knew how until I realized I’ve been giving myself a roadmap, leaving crumbs. I know I need to pray, to breathe. To have perspective, patience, dreams. But saying words, writing sentences is easy. Living out the peace and grace I want so desperately to be, to give – whole different story.

For anyone reading this on this rainy, average day and feeling inadequate, alone, or numb: you are not alone. I am saying this more to me than I am to you, which typically is true of all of these posts. But I am glad you are reading, and I appreciate your friendship.

“Learning how to think like this is like discovering halfway through your life as a flightless bird that you have wings and can fly. And once you discover it, there is no going back. It’s addictive and powerful. It ruins your ability to be a worker bee, because you’ve tasted blood: you become a killer bee, intent on understanding why things are the way they are, finding their flaws, and pushing the universe forward by fixing them.” –Dustin Curtis, dcurt.is

Tomorrow is a new morning.



This is the fourteenth post in a series, 31 Days of 6 a.m. To see a list of all posts from the month of October, click here. If you would like to have these posts delivered directly to you, enter your email address in the form located at the top right of the home page.


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August Things

Well, hi September. Wasn’t sure we’d make it to you this year, what with a rocky first few months but without hesitation here you come with promises of leaves, pumpkins, Monday Night Football and Halloween candy riding on your coattails. I’ll accept.

While we await Fall, let’s talk about August – the weird not summer in name but summer in heat month. Where you try to stick to goals and plans, but it is so hot and you lay on the couch.  Things happened nonetheless! Here’s what went through my brain and life in August:

1. Self revelation in August: I don’t do well with still. Unfortunately, my life is kind of still currently. I’ll let you know how I work this one out.

2. Quarter-life crises are referred to often in stories and tv, often depicting this #dark time with bottles of wine and cats and tears. Want to know where real quarter-life crises happen? On gchat during the work day. These happen to everyone, male or female, and hit randomly on a Thursday at 11 a.m. where you must type all of the feelings to a friend who can give you advice between answering emails. Just me reporting from the field here.

3. “If you do drive a bug, you have to be pretty easy going because you’re only gonna get to go where the bug wants to go.” -Life advice from Marcel (yes, this is old. don’t care, it makes me giggle)

4. Can we talk about New Girl? Should I admit I hated it when it first aired cause Zooey was just. TOO. MUCH. But apparently around episode 4, everyone figured this out and things got funny and involved and now I’m so sad Netflix only has season 1. Also, I watched it in less than week. Weekend. Semantics. Point is: go watch it. Cringe a little the first few episodes then YOU WILL LOVE IT.  Also, someone give me all of Season 2. Please.

Jess Day

5. Baby sister is in college, now. She moved in a dorm room and went through rush and has new baby friends and goes to lectures and labs. I called my Mom and asked her how she deals with the anxiety of parenting. To which she reminded me I don’t have a kid…..But seriously, I just love this tiny girl and want to teach her all of the things but I can’t so I just listen to all of the things and secretly wish I was in college too. Sis went Kappa at OU this month and I pledged Kappa at OU six years ago. Look at these twins separated by six years:

Bid Day twins

6. Speaking of Kappa, my “big sister” when I was in college ended up being actually like a real big sister and one of my dearest, sweetest friends. This week, she had her first baby! Precious sweet Jack made his entrance into the world on Monday afternoon and I am so thrilled. Also? I haven’t had anyone super close to me give birth before and man, I was anxious. I thought about her every 15 minutes at work the morning she was in labor. I can’t wait to watch tiny Jack grow up with the best parents I could imagine.

7. Pluots. Blueberries. Strawberries. Donut Peaches. Nectarines. I am having a love moment with delightful stone fruits and berries. I can’t stop. I ate 3 pluots in one day.

8. I love to cook and I also love to read recipes/blogs and pretend I can (or will) make all the recipes I have bookmarked across my toolbar in Chrome. The odds of me making these 214 masterpieces are slim, primarily because I try to eat a (MOSTLY) paleo diet, free of things like cake or bread. But on the days I do want to eat glorious foodstuffs no caveman would consume, I go straight to Jessica from How Sweet Eats. So, you know how some people have an imaginary dinner party invite list? I have one of those and I have an imaginary cook-in-the-kitchen-all-day with list. This obviously includes Jessica because she would make a gooey chocolate-y covered in sprinkles dessert, Shauna Neiquest because she would provide hearty bread and chunks of cheese and beautiful insights into God and life and love,  Juli from PaleOMG because we need to keep some sort of balance and she makes heavenly looking meat-based dishes and also Ree Drummond because she makes beautiful pasta salads and would be hilarious and finally, Cindy (Hungry Girl por Vida) because I’m always hungry and the things she makes amaze me. Whew. Is it time to eat?

9. I went through Starbucks Thursday morning and the Pumpkin Spice Latte is already back. What is this sorcery? It’s 102 degrees here today, there is no room in this heat for pumpkin flavors. PS: my dad calls them “Spicy Pumpkins” and it drives my momma bananas. Sis and I find it hilarious.

10.  Kate and I are going to take a best friend trip for New Year’s Eve and our current destination is Nashville. Thoughts? Ideas? Better suggestions? Let me know. Also if you live in Nashville, tell me all of the foods we should stuff ourselves with.

August was good, hot and quick – which sounds like an ad for pizza, not a month in which I lived. September, October and November will be busy in the best ways – between travel, work and a new project on the blog (shh!, more details soon), the last few months of 2013 will likely move quick.

Here’s to going back to “school!”


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day thirty: when your truths don’t ring true for everyone

A few years ago, I constructed my own Happiness Project based on the book by Gretchen Rubin. In it, she shares a journey she took trying to discover the ‘secret’ to happiness and she inspired me to do the same. So here, on this blog in 2011, I chronicled a journey where I had 4 goals a month shaped after Gretchen’s but tailored to my personal life. I learned a lot of things I still put into practice today like if you clean your sinks first, you feel better about cleaning the rest. I also learned one of my secrets to a happy life is continuously writing down (or at least recognizing) items for which I am grateful.

The biggest lesson I put into practice weekly, if not daily, is you must know what your personal truths are and those truths will not be true for everyone. 

As I wrap up this month on patience, I’m thinking holistically of what it means to live a life exhibiting patience but whatever I find to be truly an exhibition won’t be the same thing you find to ring true. Then I realized maybe here is a character trait of patience I’ve overlooked – what if patience is not only a synonym for endurance, for grace and for waiting but it is also a synonym for tolerance?

Tolerance means a lot of things, but in this election season and in these tumultuous times with bullies and hurricanes and hate, I think tolerance and patience mean living a life  modeled after someone who spent His life reaching out to the ‘rejects’ – the prostitutes, the blue-collars. Tolerance means hearing words you would prefer spoken differently, allowing others to view life differently, drive a different car, laugh at different jokes. Seems easy enough,  yet I am willing to bet all of us fail daily at not judging others’ way of living.

My personal truths are these:

  1. Show up if you say you’re going to show up. People need you in all ways, and saying you’ll be there in any of those ways means you show up.
  2. Jesus loves me enough to listen to me and help me and want me. He loves you just as much.
  3. If something isn’t good, change it. If you can’t change it, make it good
  4. Life is filled with ‘anyways’ – times where you must love people ‘anyway’, do work ‘anyway’, become better ‘anyway.’

Just 4 of the beliefs I live by daily and you may not believe any of them. And it is okay. Because tolerance means loving people anyway with patience and grace.

The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. [2 Peter 3:9]

So tonight and tomorrow, when you’re tempted to correct or to preach or to reprimand, take a breath and have some patience. And thank you for reading this journey with me in October. 31 days went faster than expected and I hope you learned or laughed or both.

See you tomorrow.



Today is day thirty in my 31 days of patience series. For all posts in the series, click here.

PS: I highly recommend reading Gretchen’s book, The Happiness Project. She’s also recently released Happier at Home. Her writing style is easy to read but filled with insight and humor.

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day twenty nine: on quitting

The word ‘quit’ already has a nasty taste to it, regardless of where it is applied. It sounds dirty and quick, comes off the tongue with a bite. The “qu” sound seems hollow, empty. The word implies you did not do enough where you could have done more, makes it seem as if you failed to live up to something you had once promised and that you let people down.

We live in a society where movement is praised and stagnation is feared. You must continue to do more, boost your resume even if you have a job, give to the homeless because you have a home, run a marathon after you work a 45-hour week. Don’t forget to bake cookies for the bake sale, send a card to your grandma and field your sister’s concerns about college. Also, your dog really should be walked more than just 5 minutes after work and you shouldn’t watch so much television and reading your iPhone screen at night is bad for your eyes.

Don’t forget to say your prayers.

And then we wonder how we get burned out of our lives we’re supposed to love because we built them on purpose? Maybe the pronouns are the problem. We didn’t build anything and these are not our lives for the making. Yet, we forget. We wrestle with ourselves, ignore our intuition out of obligation. So when part of us decides that perhaps the thing we signed up for is too much, not right, not fitting – the other side of us says “you always give up too soon” and “you owe this to people” and “you can’t quit.”

But what fruit were you getting at that time? [Romans 6:20]

Good question, isn’t it? This question comes at the end of a paragraph in Romans that discusses “slavery to righteousness” – forgetting that we are saved by grace and not by works. I think in this constant communication and information age , one of our biggest struggles is learning to say no, learning to say I’m sorry but I can’t do this anymore. Years ago, one of my favorite bloggers wrote a post I have bookmarked on what happens when you feel behind. She said “this disease needs a cure and only the Healer can give it.” I know what she means today and I hope I feel that lightness that is promised by Our God who says that He is in control, He will give you rest.

No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. [Luke 16:13]

Say it with me: I can not do it all. Because we cannot. And we must be more attentive to our souls and intuition. We must be willing to say yes when life comes calling and no when the call is too loud, and we must do so without apologizing. I believe that living a full life means living it on your terms – you can serve, love, hope and dream bigger and better when you’re doing so to the best of your ability. And the best of your ability doesn’t always mean stretched to your ability.

So today, on this Monday take a deep breath and don’t feel bad when you can’t do all the things you pressure yourself to do. Have patience when your heart tells you to say no and really listen to whether yes or no is the answer you need to give.

See you tomorrow.



Today is day twenty nine in my 31 days of patience series. For all posts in the series,click here.

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day twenty eight: impatience

We’ve spent almost a full month discussing patience, how to stay patient and more – but I think I’ve overlooked the times when impatience rules.

It rules a lot of the time.

On this late Sunday evening, I pray for grace and peace and patience. All three of those words are different, yet they all mean to overcome an undesirable circumstance and be better for it on the other side. And in this last week of October, I pray Colossians 3:12-14 for all of us in this fight against impatience and lack of endurance.

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

See you tomorrow


Today is day twenty eight in my 31 days of patience series. For all posts in the series,click here.

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