my new family.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

this week was Thanksgiving. i am not usually a huge fan of it to be honest. i don't really like turkey (although i have found it's bc i always take the white meat, which i hate.) i mean, i have always loved being with my family and eating my moms dinner, shes a good cook. both my parents were in the Navy so ive lived here almost my whole life and consequently, my family has never lived close by so we never visit family for the holidays. that always made me sad bc i love my family. i remember when i was younger we would visit my Gramma's lake house in the summer. my uncles and my dad would always be drinking beer- which is why i love the smell of beer. my uncle randy- i dont think he was really my uncle, but he would always take us kids tubing. we would wash our hair in the lake (sorry environment.) and we would go fishing off the dock. it was my absolute favorite. but that was summer and not thanksgiving, so it has never been extra special. but this year, i got to go visit family. my new family. joshs family. we laughed and made jokes at Emma and how she is never gonna come out (Emma is Josh's first niece) and ate yummy dinner. it was the first year i actually liked the dark meat turkey, stuffing, and sweet potatoes! Josh's mom was over from Belgium and his sister Kait came up from Atlanta. so we were missing Steven and Mr. Mike (Josh's dad... i think i am supposed to start calling him Mike.... weird) but it was still really fun. one of my favorite thanksgivings for sure. we played buzz word and Josh's mom knew almost every answer, leaving Kaitlin Josh and I to lose miserably. but our team was fun, because Kait would laugh uncontrollably and could not talk and it was really funny to hear her try. Josh would get really hyped up and sound angry when he really wasn't. and i would do the same ("its Babe.") and Jessica and Robbie know it but they totally won because they got easier cards... like butter? come on. we all laughed really hard and i think the Henderson clan (Brooke and Searcy included) saw a different side of me that night, and i did of them too. Joshs mom fell out of the chair laughing numerous times. we will for sure have a re-match when the others come to town! (Steven- gear up.) After the game, Kait Josh and I , in our defeat perhaps, watched Robin Hood. (the one with Russel Crow- whom i have a new-found love for.) he has a way of making the movie a love story but it's just a side story. not the main plot which i like a lot bc it adds depth to the movie. He is also just a really god actor. I loved that movie- and i love watching movies in general. only at home though.... its too much in a theater and not as comfortable. it was definitely short lived, we had to leave on friday so i could get to work at 4:30. it wasnt as busy as it could have been, but it was good. i raked in some hours. i just can't wait to go back and spend an early Christmas with them and of course meet Emma!!

also- school work? what school work? i took a long break.... 3 more weeks- you can do it Al.
date night tonight- i cannot wait.


Monday, November 22, 2010

i have not posted in a while. partly due to business and partly due to laziness. i also have not had much to say lately. life for us has been kind of crazy for us with school, work, young life, and life in general. I have to admit- I literally have not planned a single thing for the wedding since i got the dress. I have thought about it- but i have not been fretting at all. I do feel like i should be doing something but I have not. I did contact a hotel about blocking off rooms for the wedding, but im all new to this and i do not know what is reasonable for the hotel. i mean, its the outer banks and mid-summer on a weekend, it will be pricey but what if it's too pricey? should i look somewhere else? there is not a plethora of hotels down there, nice ones anyways. plus i know from a lot of people that they plan on getting a house. so im at a stand still. what to do what to do? well- i have taken the "do nothing" stance. don't get me wrong, im so excited to throw a wedding and plan it. ive just been off lately and stressed. adding the pressure of wedding stuff would make me cringe. so, winter break- here i come. with wedding plans in full swing. then comes the small details.

this past weekend Josh and I went to Rockbridge fall weekend camp with the Chesapeake area. It was simply amazing. Weekend camp has such a different vibe and feel to it than summer camp. i mean- its 2 days. its cold (for the most part). and how are you supposed to get to know these high school kids within that time? i do not know how, but somehow it works. the Lord provides the time and patience. I got 9 hours of sleep between friday and saturday night. 3 hours on the first- thats nuts! but we do it- with the Lord as our strength we push through it. I got to spend time with some of the sweetest girls. I did not know most of these girls. and it was a blessing to get to do just that. It was also such a joy to watch my closest friends lead. Especially Josh- he is so great at it. If you knew Josh, you'd know he is pretty outdoorsy. At the ropes course he took some of his guys and wondering around exploring in the creek. One of my dearest friends, a high-school senior Katie Carr, said "they look like the lost boys from peter pan." it was so true. and so encouraging to watch. and to watch the patience of my team, matt, thomas, and ryder with one of the guys. And to watch my friends from other schools go crazy at club- youd think that we were in 5th grade the way we act during club songs. It was seriously the best. Most of the girls i led this weekend were freshman and sophomores. Only a small handful of them know Libby. for our boys vs. girls football game, the girls all wore lime green and we all "were fighting and playing and going to win for Libby!" They said before the would start a play "Come on girls- were winning this for Libby!" It was the sweetest thing ever. Even the other schools from our area wore lime green and they do not know her at all. no juniors went bc of ring dance and only 4 seniors went. so it was a fresh new weekend for me to do with these girls and i have so much joy bc of it. the seniors led so well too. i mean truly- other areas get shocked when they find out we have some students leading cabins (the shortage of girl leaders yet again) they do so great though. i walked out sunday morning to the senior led cabin of girls playing signs in a circle in the grass. i cried tears of joy to know that the Lord worked through them like that. so i thank God for the opportunity and privilege to lead- even though it is hard sometimes and i have to fight for energy and patience. So thank you God- so so much.

We are looking forward to this week so much. A little break to go visit Josh's family for Thanksgiving. His sister is having her baby soon (if Emma will hurry up!) and his mom is visiting from Belgium. A break is what we need- especially Josh from school. Plus I miss his family and have not seen his mom since our engagement. So it should be very exciting!!! We can't wait even more for Christmas because his dad and other sister and her husband will be there to celebrate- plus Emma for sure!

Last note- we took our engagement photos last weekend. Matt Benson, my team-mate, Josh's roommate and on of our dearest friends, took some realllllly good shots. I  love them! I can't wait to post them once he is done!

rough week.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

i really do not have much to say write now- i am in the university library (which is under major construction so its loud and cold in here plus there are maybe two outlet in this entire place. really odu? you couldnt have at least used my tuition money for that?) i am supposed to be working on the loads and loads of homework i have to do, but instead i will be my usual procrastinating self and blog. so here i am blogging. my fingers are frigid. Josh and I were supposed to finish registering this past sunday. i was going to so excited to post about it and how much fun it was. instead i had to work at my new job- New York & Company. its a clothing store. so big thanks to God that i found a job, but i guess that it can only mean i have to start giving up lots of things. I hate hate hate working Sundays- it's the absolute worst I think, but i knew if I didn't open up my availability, I would not get a job.

So yesterday (thursday) was my first official day at work on the sales floor. I was not feeling so great before and did not eat lunch. This is a recipe for disaster for me- no lunch, high heels, bright lights, and running around finding sizes. But it was an on-call shift and they only needed me from 3-5 so I figured it would be fine. At 4 o'clock the hunger set in. As time progressed I felt worse and worse- then I looked in the mirror and I was flushed. I had to push through- I can't lose this job. Well I finally told my manager I felt awful like I was going to pass out. I went to the back room and threw up. Perfect. Oh joy. So my brother picked me up and drove me home. I got sick a couple more times and finally forced myself to eat some chicken noodle soup. I do not know what it was- a virus maybe? Or it could have been all those factors into one. Anyways- my managers were really cool about it so I am thankful for that. Josh came over when he got out of class and took care of me- got me water and made sure I was okay. It was really sweet- I appreciate that more than he knows because I know he has stress levels past his ears this week with the school work he has. I have a ton too. This week has been stocked and loaded with school work for us. I didn't do any of it like I planned last night. I got my test scores for microecon back last night and seriously wanted to cry but i was too angry to. I studied my eyes off for this test because of my last grade and thought I did well. I only got 3 points higher than the last. This class is literally KILLING me. I am not giving up yet- i will get a tutor, put the next 300 test bank questions on flash cards and drill, and make an A on my project. I am determined because I would die if I had to take this again.

Next week will hopefully be a bit of a break for us. Josh's mom is coming over from Belgium for Thanksgiving and were going up for a few days- plus his sister is having her first baby! So we are hoping it come just in time for us to be there! We are super excited about that! Hopefully we can rest up and take our minds off of stuff for a bit.


Wednesday, November 3, 2010

i am continually learning that marriage is work. we're not married yet i know- but we're working toward that goal and it is work. sometimes easier than others and sometimes really really hard. i read this thing on the internet once about marriage, it said this:

"Before I got married, I prayed that we would always feel in love.
I now realize what a naive prayer that was. Don't get me wrong, I love my husband. But the ooshy gooshy feelings aren't always there. They get tangled up and sometimes tossed aside in the pressures of everyday life.
That's where our love becomes a choice. A choice to step outside selfish perceptions, on going frustrations, the self-centered right to be right and make the choice to love even when our feelings beg us not to.
During the past 17 years, there have been times where we made the choice to hang on when our love was but the tiniest of threads. Other times our love seemed so strong it was inconceivable it should ever unravel.
Most days, our love has been a choice to get up everyday and retie the knots that bind us.The beautiful thing about making the choice to love, is the feelings often catch up rushing in taking us by surprise."

i loved this. i needed to hear this at that time too- i mean this was so long ago i emailed this to josh. and i just thought of it the other day. its been rough lately. ive been whiney and hes been impatient. its hard. i dont think ive been honest with really anyone lately. people ask "how are you" all the time- such a popular phrase, i must say it 20 times a day. but when i sit back and really think of my answer, its not what i usually say "im doing well." no. im not. things are a mess and my heart hurts and its hard. school is so rough, young life is hard, relationships are hard, its all hard. thats what i want to scream sometimes. it is hard. life. i know i know- so what? eveyones life is tough, get over it Al. well, im learning. im living and learning and trying so hard to understand why God has out me in these circumstances. i need to just accept it. im at where im at in life for a reason and even though its hard- im pushing through. 

i think its been especially tough lately because i have not been relying on jesus for this. i am lonely, i am scared, i feel like a burden to pretty much everyone in my life, i feel like a pointless leader, i feel my efforts are dull and lame, i just feel bad sometimes. so instead of running to jesus- i run away and hide myself in the midst of the craziness of life. and things progressively get worse because of  this. i mean- i know the answer in my head- "ally, run to jesus, cast your burdens on him." but its not that simple- really its not. its hard to run to someone you feel like isnt always there- i know he is- but sometimes i feel like if no one else cares, why should he? the creator of the universe? are you insane? me? ME? yes me. he created me. all of me, and no matter what i am HIS. his alone. on July 24 2011, God will share me with Josh, but until then i am my beloved and my beloved is mine.and josh will never know me on as deep of an intimate level as the lord does. i know this... i also have found that when josh and i are not right with the Lord- we are not right with each other. jesus is what binds us together- without him, i can promise you josh and i would be completely wrong for each other. i could give you a list, but ill spare you the details. just trust me- we would have broken up a long time ago if it weren't for christ. i love that about us- it shows that we are too weak to take this marriage on ourselves- it would be a complete and utter failure without christ. so when were off with jesus, were off with each other. and that has been our issue lately. so, we talked today in-between classes. about life and where were at- and what we need to do to fix this. so our solution? point to chirst and christ alone. were holding each other accountable to that- christ. first and foremost.

so J- i tell you this: i love you- our strands may be loose right now, but know this: you still take my breathe away. lets fix it and point each other to christ more than ever. 

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