Friday, August 29, 2014

Five on Friday

Since I missed 10 on Tuesday and I'm still busy and kind of all over the place we're doing this bullet style today:

1. I watched two documentaries last weekend - Miss Representation and It's a Girl.  Both were excellent and opened my eyes to how alive and well sexism still is.  I could do a whole post on my thoughts about these...you should for sure watch them! If you do, message me because I'd love to discuss!



2. This week I sent an email to my coworkers letting them know about my Kenya trip and inviting them to donate to my Freedom Campaign.  I really did not want to send this email.  I thought it might be inappropriate for work, I hate asking for money, and I didn't want anyone to be annoyed with me.  But I felt God pushing me to.  Well guess what?  People donated!  Like $100 each!  I was so surprised, overwhelmed and encouraged!  You can learn more about my trip and donate here: www.stayclassy.com/ncsuz

3. I got a new job!  I am still with Lenovo, but I am moving to the marketing department for the channel team.  It was a tough decision, but I think this is a good opportunity.  I have so many mixed emotions about it though- sad, excited, nervous, anxious, relieved, stressed!  Any tips for getting through those first few weeks at a new job?

4. I'm not sure if we are just a test market for this or not...but have you tried the frosted lemonade at Chic-fil-a?!  OMG it is amazing!  I saw the sign for it throughout the summer but didn't give it a try until last night and wow! I've been missing out!  I wish we were also a test market for the new breakfast items...chicken and waffles?  yes please!

5. I'm going to Harry Potter world in a few weeks!  It was very last minute.  I had an airline credit I had to use before the end of October and luckily one of my friends was able to go and found us an awesome deal on a hotel.  I can't wait!

Hope you guys have a fabulous long weekend!!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Ten on Tuesday

My brain is fried.  I meant to post this earlier, but you know how it goes.  Just wanted to share some random thoughts so I can get back into the habit of blogging regularly.  Here we go...

1. I don't understand this ALS ice bucket challenge thing.  In the videos people say "You have 24 hours to accept this challenge or donate $100 to ALS."  I mean I guess it is a good way for people who can't donate to spread the word, but I feel like it has turned into this "look at me dump water on my head" thing.  It is bothering me, but it's good that it's raised so much awareness and money.

2. I have to get more shots for my Kenya trip tomorrow.  Let me tell you this whole vaccination thing has made me thankful for electronic medical records.  I have no record of my shots except for the past 3 years and trying to get past medical information is an act of congress.  Also I hate needles.  I got the Typhoid and Yellow Fever shots last week so at least I know I can just suck it up and get through it but I'm so ready for all these shots to be over.  Also these shots ain't cheap!  It was over $300 for the 2 I got last week!

3. I watched a TED talk yesterday and this conception to birth video blew my mind.  I mean the complexity of creating a human is amazing.  God is an amazing engineer!



4. Reality TV has gotten me through the summer.  Big Brother. Bachelorette and Bachelor in Paradise.  Dance Moms.  Raising Asia.  It's my guilty pleasure.

5.   I got a Jawbone UP a few weeks ago and I am obsessed with it.  Best purchase I have made in a while.  I got the old version which was only $79!  Anybody else have an UP?

6.  One of the girls in my bible study went on this Kenya trip back in June and showed me pictures from the trip.  One of the things I was most worried about was the bathroom situation.  It is literally a shack with a hole in the ground.  Literally a hole. in the ground. This is probably TMI but...I was even contemplating taking Imodium so I wouldn't have to go #2 while we are in the village during the day and almost threw a party when according to my period tracker I wasn't supposed to start until the day we come home when I will at least have access to airport bathrooms.  Then I saw this video.  And I felt really guilty about being worried about myself for 10 days when these girls have to worry about it all the time.



7. I read a great blog post yesterday.  The title was "God I am worn out" and all I could think was Amen!  In it she talks about how a tree has to shed it's leaves to prepare for winter and if it doesn't the branches become overwhelmed and break.  She talks about how you have to say no to some things so that you can say yes to others.  This is a lesson I need to learn ASAP!

"...That's what happens when a snow comes early. The trees weren't designed to face snow before releasing their leaves. They weren't made to carry more than they should. And neither are we.
I know the weight of carrying more than I should. And usually it's because I've refused to release something before taking on something else. If I want to choose a Best Yes, it's crucial I make room for it first.

Otherwise, a Best Yes can quickly become a stressed yes. And a stressed yes is like snow on a tree that refuses to release its leaves. It causes cracks and breaks at our core.

If we refuse to release before we add, we will get overloaded."

- See more at: http://proverbs31.org/devotions/devo/god-im-worn-out/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+p31encouragement+%28P31+Encouragement+for+Today%29#sthash.kNFxsU6T.dpuf

8.  Speaking of stressed, I also read this article about how the age women are happiest at is 25 and the age they are most stressed at is 34.  I just had my 34th birthday. Great.

9. Following God is sometimes like going to the gym for me.  I dread it.  I whine about what He asks me to do (currently fundraising for Kenya is at the top of my list).  But I am always blown away by what He does when I follow Him and feel so good afterwards saying "That was totally worth it."  But getting there is definitely a struggle and most of the time not very pretty.  By the way if you'd like to donate, please! help me!  because I SUCK at fundraising.  You can donate at www.stayclassy.com/ncsuz

10. I'm going to bed.  It's almost midnight.  This night owl stuff has to stop.  If you have any tips for getting to bed early and falling asleep (that's my main issue) please let me know!

Hope you all are having a fabulous week and since it's pretty much Wednesday now, Happy Hump Day!

this still cracks me up every time...



Saturday, August 16, 2014

Life doesn't always go as planned...

Wow!  It has been exactly 11 months since I last posted on here.  I almost forgot how to even create a post!

Well since we last spoke I have had a lot going on.  Around this time last year I started a new position at work.  This has been the most challenging position I have ever been in.  There is a ton of pressure and visibility and so much work to do I still feel like I am drowning on a daily basis.  I am still at Lenovo but now I am in charge of the ThinkPad sales on lenovo.com for North America.  All of them.  It's a lot of pressure.  And work.  But I'm still alive a year into it.

But I miss blogging.  I miss documenting my life here.  I miss having posts to look back on to see what was going on in my head during a particular time and to help me remember when certain things happened.  (getting old is no joke y'all!)

I started this blog originally to keep track of my adventures marking off the things on my 30 Before 30 List.  Last week I turned 34 and I STILL have 3 things left on my list:  Get in the best shape of my life, catch a fish, and kiss in the rain.  I still want to do those things and other things I would have thought I'd done by now like get married and have babies (seriously I feel way behind where society says I should be right now!)

One thing I have learned in life is that God doesn't always take you where you planned to go.  And that is the beauty of it.  Proverbs 16:9 says "We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps."  I have loved where the Lord has led me.  He's allowed me not only to do a lot of the things I had planned to do but also go above and beyond on some of the things on my list:

I'm not only paying all my bills with no help from my mom, I'm also giving away more than 10% of my income now!

I didn't just run a 5K once, I've ran a bunch of 5Ks and even a half marathon!

I've not only made a baby laugh and changed a diaper, I've led preschool classes (and volunteered in the nursery) for over a year at church.  I took a small break from it while I started my small group, but I'm officially starting back with the preschool class tomorrow!

Not only did I go on my first mission trip and first trip abroad in 2010, but in 2 months I will be going on my second mission trip to Africa!

Not only did I upgrade one room in my house, but I finally got my whole house almost exactly the way I want it- new light fixtures, paint, appliances, hardwoods, the works!

Not only did I visit Washington DC, but I also went to San Diego, Chicago, Iowa and Austin, TX.  Hopefully I will be able to say I've been to all 50 states before I die! (27 and counting!)

Not only did I read the Bible all the way through, after spending 4 years in a fabulous bible study group I now lead my own bible study group with 13 fabulous ladies!

Not only did I go to see a movie alone, I traveled by plane to a city I've never been to before and stayed there and explored for a whole week all by myself!


I can't wait to see where God takes me next! I pray that He will help/allow me to complete the last 3 things on my list (and get married and have babies) but that is not my main goal in life.  I no longer live for myself, but for Him.  I am glad that I have learned to trust His timing and follow where He leads me.

"My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me." Galatians 2:20

I am going to try to document my life on here again and also look forward to trying to read some blogs again because I miss this so much.  I know I won't have time to devote to it like I used to, but I do hope to resurrect this little space of mine!  It's good to be back!


Monday, September 16, 2013

I'm still alive- Updates and a Fall Bucket List!

Wow!  It has been over 2 months since I have posted on here!  I just wanted to let you all know I am still alive.  I have been so super busy at work.  Over the summer they changed my role not once but twice!  It has been super stressful.  And when your work life gets out of control, your whole life seems to fall apart (since work is such a huge chunk of that!)

I don't have time to give a detailed update.  I wish I had time to write full posts about each of these items, but since I don't here is a summary of what's been going on lately:

- It's ironic my last post was about how this was the best season of Big Brother, because it has actually turned out to be the worst.  I ended up hating most of the people in the house and really don't think any of the final three deserve to win.  My summer without cable TV is over, but I think after this season of Homeland is over I may cancel my Dish account and strictly do online streaming and Netflix.

- I got a promotion at work.  But I'm not really over the moon about it right now.  It is challenging.  And there has been lots of other drama at work.  I really hope things get better.  I miss the days when I used to be excited to go to work and could say I love my job, because that is definitely not the case right now.  But I am thankful to still be there and hopeful that things will turn around soon.

- In August my cat had a medical emergency.  His urinary tract became completely blocked and I had to take him to the emergency vet.  He was in the hospital for 3-4 days and when he came home he was a hot mess.  I had to confine him to my spare bathroom because he was peeing everywhere.  So far it has cost me about $2500!  They wanted to do surgery because he had some crystals adhered to his bladder, but the vet has him on some special food to try to dissolve them.  I'm really hoping it works because the surgery would be another $1400!

- One of the girls from my small group moved to Iowa earlier this year and she is getting married at the end of this month and I am going to the wedding on her fiance's farm in Iowa!  I've never been there and am excited to go.  We are flying up early and spending a few days in Chicago and then driving down to Iowa.  I haven't been to Chicago since I was a kid, so I am excited about that too!  If you have any Chicago or Iowa must sees let me know!

- Speaking of small groups, I am starting one this week!  Ahhhh I am so nervous!  My small group had been together over 4 years and I love those girls.  They will always be in my life even though we aren't in small group together. So excited to see what God will do through this new group and what girls he will bring into my life through it!

- This weekend was pretty awesome.  I ran in the Electric Run on Friday.  It was the most fun run I have ever done.  Way better than the color runs with an awesome party at the end!  I will definitely do it again if it comes back to Raleigh!  We also had Church at the Ballpark on Sunday.  There were over 11,500 people in attendance and 530 of them got baptized!  God is so good!

- I'm so excited for fall!  This summer has not been the best so I'm kind of glad to see it go.  I only got to do a few things on my summer bucket list:


I love fall!  So let's try this again with a Fall Bucket list:


Friday, July 12, 2013

Best Season of Big Brother ever???

Warning- if you don't watch Big Brother this post won't make sense to you. And if you aren't caught up on the episodes there will be major spoilers....

The only thing that made me nervous about giving up TV this summer was missing out on Big Brother.  It is usually the only saving grace with summer TV.  I have watched every season and am a huge fan!

Luckily I can still watch it through the CBS iPad app.  I can't watch until the next day, but that is ok.  It usually gives me some motivation to go to the gym at lunch the day after it airs and watch it while I am on the elliptical.

When I saw the first episode this season I was a little disappointed.  I didn't really love anyone.  After episode two I started to like Amanda and thought she was smart, but still kind of blah about this season.

My, my, my how quickly things can change!  I just watched last night's episode and it may have been the best episode in Big Brother history!  I am almost tempted to subscribe to the live feeds now.  I usually don't read message boards and didn't even vote for America's Choice or MVP (until today), but this season there is a lot of controversy about some contestant's racist remarks.  Two people have even lost their jobs over it (and they don't even know it yet!) So I started reading some message boards and watched some videos people have posted from the live feeds.

I am in shock about how mean and oblivious Aaryn is.  She has done so much damage to her character in just 2 weeks.  I kind of hope they keep her around just to see what happens.  But imagine the shock she is going to be in when she gets out of the house.  And if she has done this much damage to herself in such a short time can you imagine what would happen in 3 months!?!

Now we can't forget that even though this is "reality" the producers are influencing this somewhat.  (I guess I am more aware of this because I am reading Lauren Conrad's LA Candy series right now).  They still ask them certain questions in the Diary Room and even who Julie picks to ask questions to and the questions she asks during the live episode can sway the activity in the house.  Like her question to Aaryn last night if she ever forgot the cameras were there.  I almost died when Aaryn said no and that now America knows a lot more about her and Julie replied "Yes we do".  Seriously died!

Other things that shocked me and/or I loved so far this year:
- Amanda making out with pizza delivery guy
- How the girls are throwing themselves at the guys and how many showmances formed so quickly
- how the moving company formed so quickly (and how they turned on each other)
- Rachel's sister and actually not hating her
- I love the MVP twist
- The segment on Howard and his faith!
- How smart some of the girls are (YAY!)
- Gina Marie losing it when Nick leaves (seriously?!)

If you are not watching this show you need to start and catch up by watching the previous episodes online because this is seriously entertaining!

If you do watch, what are your thoughts of the season so far???

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Weekend wrap-up: Color Vibe Run, concerts, cookouts oh my!

I know it is Wednesday, but I am just now recovering from the weekend and getting caught up. Here is what I've been up to:

I had a pretty busy weekend this weekend. Friday my friend Jeni texted me and asked me if I would be interested in going to the Zac Brown Band concert that night. I'm so glad I didn't have plans and could take her up on her offer!  

I had so much fun tailgating and at the concert!  I tried Straw-ber-Rita's for the first time and will say I am definitely a fan! Although from what I remember from the Lime-a-Rita's last summer , I think they have a ton of calories. They are also high in alcohol content though so maybe you drink less? Not sure if they are worth it though. I had my fare share that night. I haven't been that drunk in a loooong time but I did have a lot of fun!

Saturday morning I got up super early for the Color Vibe 5k. 



I definitely got way more color on me this time than when I did The Color Run in Charlotte last year. Those pictures were after i had already wiped down for the car ride home since i was too chicken to take my phone out there.  

They were way more generous with the color at this race. They let you buy extra packets, threw some in the crowd, and each color station they got way more on you. I had more color on me before the race even started than I did at the very end of The Color Run. If you do one of these races, here are my tips for you:

1. Go with a group. It is fun to throw color at each other. Take a kid if you can. My friend's 7 year old did it with us and it was fun to watch him. 

2. Do not expect to set a PR or even expect this to be a true 3.1 mile course. I am 99% sure neither of the ones I have done were true 5K distances. And there are a ton of walkers so it is hard to weave through the crowd if you really want to run. We walked almost the whole thing this time because my friend had bad shin splints and it was on a farm with uneven trails and pastures. 

3. Bring a towel to wipe off as best you can and a trash bag to sit on to avoid getting color all over your car. 

4. Don't worry too much because most of the color should come out of your clothes and even brush off your shoes. I did have a tank top on under my shirt and the color did not come out of that but did with everything else. 

Saturday evening I went to church and then a cookout at a friend's house to celebrate her husband's birthday. We had Carolina Classic style burgers with cheese, chili, slaw, and onions (well no onions for for me).  They were yummy and I loved spending time with my favorite almost 5 month old!  I should have taken some pics!

Sunday I spent the whole day on the couch watching a marathon of Friday Night Lights. I only have one season left. I'm going to be really sad when its over because it is such a good show!

Oh and to follow up from last week...
I only had two people enter my CD giveaway so I am going to send you both one!  One of you will get my copy that has already been opened and listened to though so I hope that is ok!

I am trying to get better at this blogging thing. I signed up for bloglovin. Still need to claim my blogs on there though. I just get so busy and blogging takes a back seat. But I do love it so I am trying to get creative and make it work for me. I cleaned out my reader list. And I typed this whole post using the Blogger app on my iPad!  Bear with me. I am trying to get better at this. 

Friday, June 21, 2013

Book Club Friday- The Great Gatsby


I had to read this book back in high school, but I really didn't remember much of it at all except that this Gatsby guy was rich and threw parties and was in love with someone.

When I saw the previews for the movie, I knew I had to re-read this because the books are always better than the movie versions.

Just like I remembered, Gatsby is rich and throws lavish parties.  He is in love with a married woman, Daisy.  They were in love years ago, but Gatsby went off to war and Daisy ended up marrying someone else.  But Gatsby never forgot her.  He bought this mansion on "West Egg" strategically because it is directly across from Tom and Daisy's house on "East Egg".  Ironically Daisy's husband is cheating on her.  And that plays a big part in the story line too.

All of this is narrated by Nick who is Daisy's cousin(?) and Gatsby's next door neighbor.  Gatsby is portrayed as this mysterious guy that no one really knows well, but everyone knows of.  Eventually Nick learns of Gatsby's connection to Daisy and Daisy and Gatsby are re-introduced to each other.

About 2/3 of the way through the book picks up pace and a crazy string of events happens (I won't spoil it for you).  At the end it is just really tragic and sad the way things end up and the lessons you can derive from the story are just sad too.

It was interesting and weird (I think that is the formula to become a "classic").  It's not a huge book, so it is probably worth picking up.  The beginning can be a tad slow though.

Overall I didn't love it so I am just giving it 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Originally posted on my bookshelf blog.

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