Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Where do I live?

So much for moving to Baton Rouge - I feel as though I've only been in this city for a blink of an eye, and when I think about the upcoming two weeks, I cringe.

Yes, I am excited about 14-day road trip I am about to embark on...and thank goodness I didn't get a job yet because clearly I would have been fired already. Living in a secluded city and state far from friends and family and any sign of life form (well, not really, just for our personal lives) results in lots of travel!

The next two weeks will consist of driving to Pensacola, bachelorette party #1, rehearsal dinner, wedding, Memorial Day weekend hanging with Josh's family, two days of training someone new at my old job that I apparently still work at, drive to Jacksonville, bachelorette party #2, hang with my family, then make the 10-hour trip back to my "home" so I can actually make it that.

On another note, we had our first visitor in Baton Rouge. My sister Shiri came to visit for four days. Anyone reading this probably knows Shiri and I are polar opposites and haven't had the easiest relationship over time, but this trip proved to be the best time we've spent together. We shopped and spent lots of time reading by the pool, explored Baton Rouge, hung out in New Orleans, ate great food...and watched True Blood. :)

Anyway, I'm off to finish packing and hitting the road to see our dear friends, Chris & Taylor, get married this weekend! Josh is the best man and I'm in the wedding as well, and we are so excited to be a part of their special day!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

"How Deep Is Your Faith?"

So, I have been wanting for a long time now to get back in the habit of reading my Bible in the mornings. When I eventually get a job, I will wake up early for this morning ritual, but for now, I figured with all this time, I have no excuses!

This may sound trivial, but every time I pick up my Bible, I have this conversation with myself over where to begin. Do I choose a book or person whose story is relevant to where I am in life? Do I start with Genesis and just plow through? Old Testament, New Testament? Wherever the book mark is from the last time I had this conversation with myself?

Well, this morning Reba helped me decide. "I Keep On Loving You" has been playing on the radio and my Pandora station constantly lately and I decided to let her country love song push me in the right direction today. These are the first lines of the song:

Love takes the patience of Job
That's what my Mama always said
Faith is the belief in something more than what you know
That's what the Good Book says

So, I grabbed my Bible, my coffee and my journal and headed out to the balcony with Baby Girl following me on this overcast morning.

It has always struck me as odd when Christians' faith is so easily knocked down when calamity or struggle hits them. I am by no means confessing to have always walked the straight and narrow, but I have never doubted God's hand in my life. However, today I saw God a little differently as I was reading. In Job 1:12, God gives permission to Satan to test Job, and Satan kills all of Job's offspring, then in 2:6, God again gives Satan permission to make Job ill.

I have to say I was a little personally offended when I first read this! Really, God, you're just going to let Satan hurt us? Aren't you supposed to be protecting us from Satan, not giving him permission to do as he pleases!?

Then it all hit me, like a ton of bricks. Satan can't do anything to us that God doesn't give him permission to do. Satan answers to God! Our Father watches out for us and even lets bad things happen to us so we grow in our faith and learn to rely on Him more.

This got me thinking about the natural disasters and the oil spill that makes it feel like the world is just falling down around us. If God has to give Satan permission to do hurtful things to us, doesn't it make sense that the earth needs to get permission from God before it begins to crumble? God opens the skies when there is flooding, the earth's core is obeying God when it ruptures and creates a volcano. Bottom line, folks: nothing happens without God knowing it is going to happen and without knowing what the outcome will be. All of the disastrous things that happen, personally or world-wide, happen because they are planned for a strategic time to effect specific people, all for the purpose of fulfilling God's plan in each of our lives.

There is a little table in my Bible that is titled "The Sources of Suffering". It explains four sources of sin (my sin, others sin, avoidable physical or natural disaster, and unavoidable physical or natural disaster). For the last, the responsible party is God and/or Satan (which, from my recent epiphany, when it is Satan, it is God) and the needed response is ongoing trust in God's faithfulness.

So people of Nashville, and people on the Gulf Coast, and all over, respond to what God is doing in your lives. This is not in vain. The suffering that is going on has a purpose. Not to ruin but to build up.

So, this begs the question, how deep is your faith?

Friday, May 7, 2010


Today is the first Friday since I've been in Baton Rouge. I woke up this morning and began my daily ritual:

Start coffee
Turn on the Today Show
Check Facebook
Check email
Drink coffee

When I got to the Facebook part of my morning, I realized everyone's postings from the morning, and they went a little something like this:

Hallelujah, its Friday!
Payday Friday!
Why, hello Friday, it's so nice to see you!

And so on...Normally I would join in on the excitement of my Facebook friends' as they celebrate the last day of the work week, however, this week I am unable to share their joy. For today, I am unemployed. My Friday will be much like every other day I have experienced this week, my first week of not having a job and "being a housewife" as my mother put it.

I am enjoying playing "housewife" (I will clarify for anyone with that sudden thought, "wait, did I miss something?". No, in fact, you haven't...I am not a wife, just playing one, in my own life, as myself).

My days of late have consisted of cleaning, organizing, working out, laying by the pool, reading, cooking and checking things off of my to-do list. It feels quite nice actually, being productive, getting in shape, getting a little color on my skin, cooking dinner for my honey and me.

If you're wondering, the reason I am not getting a job in Baton Rouge right away is because I have plans to be back in Destin for two weeks out of this month and it would be quite pointless to spend six days looking for a job and only being employed for five before I had to leave. So, I will spend the next 21 days working out to get in shape for Chris and Taylor's wedding at the end of the month, then it will be time to find a job.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


So, it took me longer than anticipated to blog about our trip but it went great and I'm finally here to tell you all about it!

The adventure started, for me, on Thursday, my last day of work. It was definitely a day full of mixed emotions. I was in a bit of denial, and still am probably. It hasn't sunk in yet that I am unemployed and no longer work at what was the best job for me at that time in my life. I will add that the fact that my replacement called me 5 times yesterday to ask me questions did make me feel important :) But, alas, I had to leave the past where it the past.

That night we had an event at Funky Blues Shack called "Bringing Down The House - 70's Disco Night", so I grabbed Ashley, my future sister-in-law and night town sidekick, and headed out for a fun night and was able to say good bye in disco style to my former co-workers.

That night, Josh headed into town and we began packing up the condo into the U-haul trailer the next day. Baby sat anxiously in the car, waiting to see what was going on. We had everything in the truck in time for the rain to start falling. Josh and I showered up and headed to Pensacola for his best friend, Chris', Army Commissioning. It was a lovely evening with friends and we are so proud of Chris and his accomplishments! Chris and his fiance, my good friend Taylor, both graduated from UWF on Saturday and they are getting married on May 28! Josh and I are both in the wedding and are so excited for them!

On Saturday, we corralled everyone together and hit the road. Our caravan consisted of three cars, a trailer, two dogs, Josh and his brother and sister and myself. Here the pups waiting to hit the road.

The trip took about 5 1/2 hours because of having to stop for two dogs, driving 65 MPH with the trailer and it started raining pretty bad. All in all, it wasn't a bad trip. We made it to Baton Rouge around 5:30. I'm going to be honest and admit that when we pulled off the highway into Baton Rouge, I had a pang of anxiety when it hit me that I just moved to a town I've only been to once, have no job and know no one here. But when I first saw the apartment, I wanted to cry of relief. Relief that we would be living in such luxurious conditions, relief that we have so much space, relief that everything we've been through the last few months were worth it, and relief that my man picked such a perfect place for us here! Josh whipped out a Heineken for all of us to enjoy to celebrate our arrival in our new home :)

Then....there was a lot of walking up and down 3 flights of stairs, a lot of sweating, a lot of heavy furniture lifting, and a pretty hearty appetite built up. So Josh treated us to his new favorite sushi place in Baton Rouge. This is the most amazing sushi I have ever had; everything is Louisiana-inspired!

More pictures to come on house decorating and Baton Rouge explorations. For now, I'm enjoying being unemployed, soaking up the summer and trying to get a lot done!