Sunday, February 28, 2010


This post is going to be short. However, I just want to say how much I LOVE the weekend. No matter what I'm doing, where I'm going, or who I'm seeing, the weekend is just good for me. It gives me a chance to unwind from the week. It gives me a chance to REST (typically I sabbath on Sundays) and it gives my soul a chance to refuel for the coming week.

This weekend was a good one. My good friend, Camille, came in town. Our mutual friend (and my coworker) Alexia got married on Saturday at the Allen House. It was a really fun, small, outside, beautiful wedding. The weather was perfect, and it was so great to see my friend get married. I really like going to weddings. There is something just so cool about seeing believers get married, and pledge their life for each other. It's a beautiful thing. Maybe someday I'll get to experience that. Maybe!? :) Come on, God. (kidding).

On Friday night we went to one of my favorite restaurants in Austin, Blue Dahlia Bistro. Do yourself a favor and go there. I have never been disappointed in anything I've gotten. It's a cute, small little French Bistro on E. 11th. It's cozy, and has some great organic, fresh dishes. Try it!

We did other stuff, and saw other friends, but I'm tired of writing.

Until tomorrow.

Buenas Noches.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

STAMP of approval: Fashion Edition. But I'm not fashionable.

Here come some more stamps of approval by yours truly.

Up first are GAP V-neck sweaters. I have LIVED in these this winter (and yes, Texas has had a winter this year in my opinion!). They are SO comfortable and I really do love them. Check out, Gap's Website, for yours today! I have them in about 10 colors. Quit judging me. (For the record, Gap is my favorite store so basically this stamp could be put on everything they have! I am a huge fan of their jeans!)

Second are Sperry's! I don't wear these because they are "cool". I wear these because they are seriously so comfortable. Are they they cute or fashionable? No. But I love them, and I wear them just about everyday, usually with jeans and v-neck sweater. Call me ordinary. Oh well!For the summer I'm getting these in blue! So cute! Chances are you will see me in these, shorts, and an american apparel vneck. I like vnecks and boats shoes if you couldn't tell.

Last are what's become my favorite brand of watches: Kenneth Cole. These watches are nice, and I think are worth the amount of money they cost. My mom bought me one last year for my birthday (2008) and I still wear it a lot. My mom bought me another one this past year too. I don't have the one below, but isn't it a beauty? You can find these at any department store. I got both of mine at Macy's. But they actually have a Kenneth Cole outlet in Round Rock so they would be cheaper.

Anyway, there is my materialistic blog for the weekend. HA! Just kidding. I appreciate nice stuff, but I know life isn't all about this stuff.

Friday, February 26, 2010

La Republica Dominicana

Last night I had the pleasure of getting to hang out with the two ladies above. On the left is Robin, who is a dear friend of mine who lives/serves in the Dominican Republic for Makarios. I volunteered for this organization as an intern in the Summer of 2007. That's when my heart was forever changed! Anyway, Robin was in town this week, and I had a chance to meet up with her at Dominican Joe and catch up. Getting to talk to her about the DR is always refreshing, and it was SO good to see her. On the right is Mama Barb, aka my dear friend Cara's mom. Cara also lives/serves in the DR for an organization called La Tienda. You can read about it on her blog. Cara and Robin have both lived in the DR since 2007! I didn't even know them in Austin. Our friendships all started there. I love these girls, and the organizations they work for. They have devoted themselves to loving HIS people in the DR and they do an awesome job. They are good and faithful servants, and I'm so blessed to know them.

Countdown to my next visit to La Republica Dominicana: FOUR months from today!!!! You don't understand my excitement about this. I will be in my beloved country for 12 whole days!!! Camille is coming too and she's pretty cool too :) AND cara's family will be in town too. It's going to be a party! We started planning our awesome July 4th weekend last night! Ha.

Enjoy your Friday!!!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

STAMP of approval: Food Edition

I'm totally copying this idea from my friend, Melinda. She gives her STAMP of approval to proudcts she really likes. Here are a few of my favorites that I want to share...
If you have never tried this chips, DO IT! They are so so so good. Jillian Michaels from biggest loser even admits that these are the "best" chips out there. Never baked, never friend, just popped! Do yourself a favor and buy a couple of bags. I know they are sold at Whole Foods, Central Market, Sprout's, and Target. Haven't seen them at HEB or Target.

Up next, Pure Protein, protein shakes. These are SO good. Protein shakes typically taste terrible, but I can honestly say that these taste delicious. If you are wanting to get in some extra protein in your day and don't want to eat a lot more meat/beans I definitely recommend getting some of these. You can buy them individually at HEB or Gold's gym, and I also just noticed that Target is carrying them! Each has 35 grams of protein and are less than 200 calories a can.

Laughing Cow cheese wedges! These little things are delicious and perfect if you are a big cheese fan. Cheese can be loaded with calories (do you know that shredded cheddar has over a hundred calories for 1/4 of a cup? And trust me, you eat more than a cup typically). These cheese wedges come in a few different flavors and are 35 calories per triangle. You can easily pair these with some crackers and you are set!

My last but definitely not least stamp of approval is for Larabars. I first saw these advertised on Biggest Loser and I decided to try some. They are basically bars that only have a few ingredients, so they are pretty clean. They are pretty dense in calories (190-220) so you definitely have to factor it in daily, but they are worth it. My favorite flavors are Apple Pie and Peanut Butter cookie. You can get these at pretty much any grocery story and run about 1-1.50 a piece. That's all folks.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Todo en espanol!

Last Friday night, Christie and I decided to have a night totally dedicated to spanish/Mexican things. Christie is one of my best friends here in Austin, and we always have a great time together whenever we hang out. I also am her mentor, and our friendship has grown so much through our times in talking about the Lord together. She is one awesome girl! So thankful for her! And the fact that she is one of the funniest people I know definitely helps bring a ton of joy to my life. In my birthday card last year she wrote that one reason she loved me was because I didn't judge her for not so secretly wanting to Mexican! Ha!

We started off our night by eating Tacos at Torchy's, she got carnitas (totally mexican) and I had fajitas (boring I know).
There slogan is damn good tacos. And honestly, I have to agree. The fajitas and the corn tortillas are fantastic, and this is definitely climbing the list on one of my favorite places to eat in Austin.

After dinner, we decided to go to Fiesta! We had talked about going here for a long time. Fiesta is a grocery store in Austin that has a TON of Mexico products. There are two locations here in Austin and if you are ever wanting something you might have had in Mexico, chances are you going to find it here. Taking this girl here was like taking a 5 year old to a candy store and telling them they could have WHATEVER they wanted. Seriously, Christie had a blast! It was fun for her to collect some things for her classroom (she's a Spanish/Uteach major at UT and currently student teaching at Bowie H.S.) And just pick up other random Mexican things. So so fun!

Lastly, we went back to her apt to watch a "Mexican Film" as she kept referring to it. It was called El Norte. It's basically about a brother and sister who are fleeing from Guatemala to the "Norte" aka the USA. They eventually get to the USA, to LA actually. This movie was entirely in Spanish, and it was super super weird/random. Oh well! I wish I could tell you how it ends, but sadly we fell asleep, and yes it was about 10pm. Don't judge us!


haha! :)

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Crazy Love. Francis Chan.

I read this book last year at some point and recently I started reading through it again. Francis Chan loves Jesus, and he brings A LOT of solid truth in this book. You need to read it. Just go get it right now, and start reading. This book is just eye opening. It's going to convict you. It's going to make you want to love Jesus more than you do. It's going to make you want to change what kind of Christian you have been. He talks about everything from being crazy in love with Jesus, to what Jesus thinks about people who are lukewarm (this isn't good by the way). I'm going to share some of my favorite quotes that just blew me away!

"I hope reading this book will convince you of something: that by surrendering yourself totally to God's purposes. he will bring you the most pleasure in this life and the next. I hope it affirms your desire for "more God"- even if you are surrounded by people who feel they have "enough God". I hope it inspires confidence if you have questioned and doubted the commitment of the American church. I want to affirm your questioning even while assuring you there is hope."

"As I see it, a lukewarm Christian is an oxymoron, there's no such thing. To put it plainly, churchgoers who are "lukewarm" are not Christians. We will not see them in Heaven."

"The critical question for our generation- and for every generation- is this: If you could have heaven, with no sickness, and with all your friends you ever had on earth, and all that food you ever liked, and all the leisure activities you ever enjoyed, and all the natural beauties you ever saw, all the physical pleasures you ever tasted, and no human conflict, or any natural disasters, could you be satisfied with heaven, if Christ was not there?"

"Christians today like to play it safe. We want to put ourselves in situations where we are safe "even if there is no God". But if we truly desire to please God, we cannot live that way. We have to do things that cost us during our life on earth but will be more than worth it in eternity."

"Having faith often means doing what others see as CRAZY. Something is wrong when our lives make sense to unbelievers."

"I question whether many American churchgoers are really in love with God because they are so hesitant to do anything for Him."- (YIKES!)

Monday, February 22, 2010

The Egypt Girls.

January 2009- Cairo, Egypt

These are the Egypt Girls. None of them are Egyptian, but God changed each one of our hearts in really big ways when He led us on a trip to Egypt in January 2009. Since then God has truly been so good to us. He formed a special bond that will never be broken. Most of our friendships began while we were far away from Austin, far away from our everyday lives, far away from cell phones, or facebook, or anything like that. Together, we lived in true community for 10 days, and God just united us in a really special way. I've never connected at this deep of a level so quickly with any group of women in my life. We truly just enjoyed each other that week, and we loved each other, and we SERVED with each other. I think the last one is what ultimately created that bond, and our experiences in Egypt will never ever leave our memories or our hearts. Over a year later, we are still friends. Over a year later, we can get together and still laugh and remember all that God taught us that week. Over a year later, we all deeply love each other's company. I am thankful for each one of these women. They have ministered and loved me in ways they will never even know, or understand. This group of women is special, and I'm so thankful to have met them. Three of them are returning to Egypt in March and I'm a little jealous :) Pray for Anna, Cara, and Michelle.

God is good.

December 2009- Austin, Texas

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Defending Our Hope

At my church, we have a ministry called the Get Trained ministry. These are courses that are designed to expand our knowledge of who God is, what is He calling us to be, who are we in Him, etc. etc. Some are on specific topics, specific times of life, different books of the bible, etc. I've had the privilege of being a part of several of these classes, and they have always blown me away. The teachers are dedicated to the truth, and are so wise. I've really enjoyed having this ministry at our church. It's a huge resource to me, and to many others.

This semester I'm taking a class called Defending Our Hope. Here is the summary of what we are going to walk through:

As Christians, we should wrestle to understand the deep things of our faith and share all that God has revealed about Himself and His promises. Join us as we reflect on all that God has done for us in the Gospel and give reason for the hope that is in us by digging into the big questions: How can a loving God send people to Hell? How could a good God allow suffering?

Tonight was our first class. It's being taught by a friend of mine, Fabs, and she asked me to be a table leader (our class has about 35 people, and we all sit at tables for small group discussion time). Needless to say tonight's class already just blew me away and it was only the INTRO! God has so much to reveal to me, and so much to show me. I just sat there and was thankful, but also a little scared. Fabs pushes you to truly know what you believe, and to truly be strong in that... because she is. She's passionate about the gospel, and passionate about her love for Christ. I sense that each time I'm around her.

One thing we talked about tonight is the fact that we are ALL evangelists for the "good news" of your life. Whether or not that's the gospel, that's another story. As Christians, it should be, but it rarely is. We are too scared to hurt some one feelings, to offend someone, to be awkward, etc. I know I am in most cases. And the truth of that is that we (I) honestly don't believe that people apart from Christ are slaves to their sin, and slaves to having NO hope, and slaves to the fact that they will spend an eternity apart for Him. Why doesn't that move me? Why doesn't that make me want to call each person in my family or any of my friends who don't know Him? I don't really know the answer, but I have a feeling in the next six weeks I'm going to figure it out.

It's not going to be an easy class, but I am thankful that God has called me to take it.

But sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who ask you to give an account for the hope that is in you yet with gentleness and reverence.
1 Peter 3:15

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Food Rules.

Since October my food intake has drastically changed. All I use to eat was fast food, and now I eat food, not just junk. Who knew eating healthy actually tasted really really good? I got this book a few weeks ago and have been wanting to blog about it. Michael Pollan is an excellent resource for learning about what to eat, and just general tips if you are trying to change how you eat. Here's are a few of my favorite "Rules" from the Book.

1. Don't eat anything your great-grandmother wouldn't recognize as food. (Think yogurt in a tube)

2. Avoid foods that have some form of sugar (or sweetener) listed among the top three ingredients. (I'm trying to get better at this one!)

3. Avoid food products that contain more than five ingredients. (Go look at anything that is prepackaged in your pantry and see just how many ingredients it has.)

4. Shop the peripheries of the supermarket and stay out of the middle. (I've been trying this recently and it's really really good!)

5. Eat only foods that will eventually rot.

6. It's NOT food if it arrived through the window of your car. (Ha!)

7. Eat sweet foods as you find them in nature. (think fruit...)

8. Don't eat breakfast cereals that change the color of your milk (throw away the fruit loops now!)

9. Eat when you're hungry, not when you are bored.

10. Last but not least, Break the rules once in a while.

I like the last one because we are all human. I'm not saying not to ever eat pizza or ice cream again, just don't eat the entire pizza, or ice cream everyday. I break the rules once in a blue moon and don't count calories, and I think it's just good for my sanity.

The end! :)

Friday, February 19, 2010

Sometimes I have an ugly heart.

And here's why....

This post is going to be brutally honest, because it needs to be. A week ago I was FREAKING out, and in the worst mood I've been in, in a very long time. Why? Because I was afraid that my flight was going to be delayed/canceled because of the snow in Dallas, and would have ruined MY weekend plans to go to California. Like I literally was so mad to the point that I wanted to cry (yes, it was that bad). It was really bad, and looking back on it, it was so foolish. I lacked trust. But most of all I was upset because the control idol in my life crept in like never before. I'm a relatively calm person. There are two things that severely stress me out: being lost and travel plans. I think both have to do with the fact that I can't control them at all.... ever! That reveals a really ugly idol of control in my life. And you know what? My plane wasn't canceled. My flight was slightly delayed but still made it to Dallas on time. We left 30 minutes later than planned from Dallas, which in turn caused Camille NOT to miss our connecting flight to Sacramento because she had been delayed in Houston. All last week I decided that I wasn't going to eat out, or spend any money on food. I knew I had enough food for the week and last Friday morning I poured my 1cup of cereal and 1cup of milk and literally was able to throw the carton away wasting no food. On Saturday while we were in San Fran we continued to luck out with parking, and with lots of other really random stuff. God was faithful, despite how ridiculous I had acted a mere 48 hours before. On Monday night when I got home I went to buy groceries and still had some cash left over from the money I had withdrew in California. I had 48 dollars in cash. When I went to pay for my groceries for the week at Sprout's, the total came to 47 dollars and some change. Seriously, God? Again, faithful.

Here's the moral of this story. I think that my control idol was very much out on the table staring me in the face, but I think that more than that it boiled down to the fact that I did not want to be in Austin last weekend. Why? Because it was Valentine's Day weekend. Everyone I knew had plans, and I wanted to be far away from having to remember the fact that I'm single. Why? Because lately I haven't been trusting the Lord in this. And before any of you who are married tell me to be patient, that I have a gift, that I have an undivided heart, etc, please don't. I know ALL of those things, and most of the time I believe them. But sometimes it just sucks to be single. Can I just say that and mean it? I want to. So I think that's the root of where all of my anger towards a silly flight came from. It boiled down to me not trusting God to work out the details of my life. When He did (as He always does) my heart was glad.

I'm going to try to trust more.

You can pray for me!

"And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to HIS purpose." Romans 8:28

Over and out.

Thursday, February 18, 2010


Last weekend I went to California for the first time ever! I've never even flown into Cali on a connecting flight or anything. So flying into Sacramento was awesome. I went with my one of my greatest friends, Camille, on the right to visit our other good friend, Laurin, in the middle. A little background info on our friendships. Camille and I were instant friends when we met 5 and half years ago. She was an officer in Phi Lamb (the sorority I joined my jr. year) and she did my introduction. I remember having a great conversation with her that night, and we've been friends ever since. After graduation when she moved to the Dominican Republic I thought she was crazy for not wanting to stay in Austin with all of her friends (and especially me). But she followed the Lord's calling there and boy am I ever thankful. Without her there I probably never would have gone, and my life wouldn't be what it is today. Speaking of the D.R. that's also where the both of us met Laurin. I met her in March 2008 when I went to visit Camille and my beloved country. Laurin and I also became instant friends, and then later became roommates. I'm so thankful for these two women. They are absolutely fabulous!!!

Back to California....

Camille and I landed in Sacramento Friday night and we all went to dinner. We were pretty tired from our very long flight/time zone change and little sleep on Thursday night. Saturday morning we drove to San Francisco, and the picture above is what we took right before we went across that famous bridge. It was kinda surreal to see it in person after seeing it in so many movies, tv shows (cue Full House theme song). It was great. That day was truly awesome. It was BEAUTIFUL weather and we walked down on the pier, around the farmer's market, then had an awesome lunch. San Francisco is the area where the green/organic movement all started so needless to say everything we ate was always super fresh, really good, but also really pricey. That afternoon we also went to the Ghiradelli Square. I had the best ice cream I've ever had in my life. (Wasn't counting calories that day obviously!) We also walked around Chinatown that was right by our hotel. It was interesting because the Chinatown here and the one in NYC are completely different. In NYC it's ALL about the selling of merchandise, in San Fran there are stores with souvenirs, but there are also lots of grocery stores, restaurants, etc. Most people were really chill and NOT in your face trying to get you to buy a fake Chanel purse or sunglasses. I liked it a more than NYC. Sorry :) That night went went to see Valentine's Day! It was an awesome movie. Sunday was Valentine's Day and we celebrated our singleness by enjoying burgers from the famous California, In-n-Out. I have to confess that I wasn't that impressed. Don't get me wrong, it was good. I hadn't had a burger in a REALLY long time and maybe I built it up too much. The fries were good though. Oh well. Camille left that afternoon, and for the second year in a row Laurin and I spent V-day night together. We went to eat some middle eastern food (YUM!) and then watched Food, Inc. Monday was pretty chill and then I left around lunch time. All in all it was an awesome weekend. So thankful for time away from Austin (it's nice to be away sometimes) and be with two of my best friends.

I heart California :)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

40 days of.... blogging?

So I know that during the next 40 days you are supposed to fast from something, but I'm going to try it the other way around. I'm going to try to blog everyday. (typically I would fast from soft drinks but since I don't drink them anymore that's not going to work) Notice I said try. I have no idea if I'll make it till Easter, but hey it's worth a shot. I'm typically online everyday anyway, so why not get my thoughts out there. I'm excited to share my struggles, my successes, and just some of the things that are going on in life. I should be more open about it anyway, and why not do it here where everyone can read it. This task might be easy at first because I've been wanting to blog about lots but been too lazy to actually do it. Hopefully I'll make this and afterward you will know a little more about the real me.

Here's to 40.