Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Today begins my last trip around the sun as a teenager.

Yay for growing up.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Cleaning slates and changing roles

Me: "I finally gave him the boot"
Stephen: "Only took you all semester"

Gah. Normally I'm nitpicky about the little things people do wrong and take awhile to get over it, but in the one relationship that's actually been unhealthy for me and needing to end, I've been willing to put up with too much for my own good. If I had been smart I would have listened to Stephen and Jordan earlier. But, point is, I finally woke up, got smart, and listened. Things should be going up from here, now that I don't have this holding me down.

Doesn't mean I'm still not sore at the person, though. Still have to finish reading the book that Jordan gave me, "How to Forgive Even When You Don't Feel Like It". Not looking forward to it, but I know I need to read it anyway.

Home life is very different now than it ever has been before. I really don't know exactly how I'm supposed to relate to my parents. I'm an adult, I take care of myself, but at the same time they are still my parents and they still pay for the roof that is over my head. Makes for some frustrations on my part, but they're still great and I still love them. Only a few weeks until I head back to Waco. Things won't be too bad.

I got a craving for tea yesterday, and when I opened up our pantry I found that we have lots of boxes of different teas. Black tea, apple cinnamon tea, peach tea, wild berry tea, lemon tea, orange tea, mint tea, chamomile tea...the funny thing is, we don't drink tea in my family. So I have idea where all this tea came from. It's probably been sitting in there for years. Oh well. Still tastes really good. Which is kind of funny, because I've never really liked tea before. I guess as you grow up things change.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Reflections on my first semester in college

So, my first semester at Baylor is finished, more or less. I take my last final tomorrow morning and will be gone by the evening. College has exceeded my expectations. I love college so much, I have grown so much, become more independent, and learned a lot about God and myself. Honestly, I don't think I'm the same person now I was when I left Austin.

Some things I told my friend Sarah I've learned during this first semester (this list is definitely not comprehensive!):
~I've learned that I am fickle, but God is constant.
~I have learned that growing up comes with a lot of responsibilities.
~I have learned that I can handle it.
~I have learned that everything always works out in the end.
~I have learned that people are different, with different personalities, and how you relate to everyone is going to be different.
~I have learned that I am a lot more immature than I realized and I still have a lot of growing up to do.
~I have learned that college is even more of a bubble than I thought it would be. It's not the real world, but God works through it to prepare you for the real world nonetheless :)
~I have learned that hardly anything is as it seems at first.
~I have learned that I am still incredibly prideful and have a lot of humiliation to go through still before I am ever anywhere near on my way to being humble as Christ was.
~I have learned Christians are naturally attracted to other Christians. I assumed I would find Christian friends at church, so I didn't really look for them on campus. I never figured that I would find my best, closest Christian friends at swing dance! Who knew?
~I have learned just how deep friendship can run. While I had true friends in high school, I can only think of two or three friendships that ran as deep as the friendships I have now.
~I have learned that God has blessed me more than I deserve.Especially in the area of friendships. I don't deserve to have the friends I have, but God has decided to bless me anyways, and for that I'm thankful :)

That last lesson especially rings true for me as I look back on this past semester. What I will miss most about college, about Baylor, over the Christmas break will not be the gorgeous campus, walking everywhere, being on my own, or even swing dancing. What I will miss the most will be the new friends I have made. They say in order to have good friends, you need to be a good friend. I often think that I somehow got lucky to be an exception to that rule. I know that I am not nearly a good enough friend to deserve the friends that God has blessed me with this semester. God has given me some of the best friends anyone could ever ask for, and for that I am thankful.

Taylor Oh wow, where to start? Thank you for being the best twin a girl could ask for. Thank you for all the fun moments we shared together. Thank you for lending me your shoulder whenever I needed to cry, and offering tissues and chocolate to go along with it! Thank you for sitting with me and helping me talk through my feelings. Thank you for being honest with me when I needed you to be. Thank you for introducing me to the God box, to Redeeming Love, and to a new way of looking at life. Thank you for being a constant in my life, for loving me for who I am and accepting me unconditionally. Thank you for being an amazing sister in Christ. There's so much more that I could thank you for...for everything I've listed and everything I've forgotten, thanks so much. I only hope I can be half the best friend to you that you've been to me.

Jordan Thank you for always looking out for me, for walking me across campus when it's dark, and being there when I needed someone to be an overprotective older brother. Thank you for listening to me ramble on, sometimes for hours on end. Thank you for long walks around campus, honest and deep conversations, rides to CVS and Best Buy, and plenty of laughter, even at your expense. Thank you for your constant presence in my life as a gentleman and as a brother in Christ.

Stephen Thank you for being a constant example of true friendship, faithfulness, patience and unconditional acceptance. Thank you for being one of the best listeners I have ever known, for helping me through some of the difficult transitions I had to make during this first semester, and for patiently listening to my long facebook ramblings. Thanks for putting up with my girly mood swings and random frustrated text messages. Thanks for letting me squeeze your hand to death during the scary movie. Thank you for the car rides, the dances, and the movie nights at your dorm. Thanks for showing me what unconditional acceptance really is. Thank you for being an awesome friend and brother in Christ.

Anna Thanks for being a good listener and an awesome friend and sister in Christ. Thank you for your constant hospitality, for your awesome cooking, and for organizing the awesome potluck dinner. Thanks for asking me to room with you next year, I can hardly wait!

Austin Thank for just being Austin, for showing me how to be relaxed, have fun, and take life as it comes. Thanks for loving me even when I get on your nerves. Thanks for being an awesome friend and brother in Christ.

Shane Thanks for being a constant source of entertainment and general awesomeness. At the same time, thanks for being serious, being a good listener and a good source of advice when needed. Thanks for knowing when to be which. Thanks for the awesome weekend at your house, for wonky swing dances, and for being a brother in Christ.

Emma Thank you for long walks and deep conversations, and being an awesome sister in Christ. Thanks for wanting to know the real answer when you ask "how are you?". Thanks for being a great friend.

Sarah Thanks for being an amazing sister in Christ and fellow lover of music, swing dance, and deep thinking.

Landon Thanks for being a fun person to be around, for holding on to me while watching scary movies, and for being an awesome friend and brother in Christ. Have fun in Italy!

Michelle Thank you for accepting me into your circle of friends even though you're a fifth year senior and I'm just a freshman, for checking up on me at random times, for lunch after church, and being an amazing sister in Christ that I can look up to.

Tracey Thanks for teaching me how to be a better dancer, and being an awesome friend.

Katie Thank you for little person hugs and for being a sweet and fun person to be around.

I do not deserve to have y'all as my friends, and I am thankful that God decided to bring y'all into my life anyways. God bless all of you!


It snowed this morning! It wasn't much, and it melted quickly, but being a Texan it was enough to put a HUGE smile on my face!

I finally have most of my grades back. I got 94 on my chemistry and sociology finals, which means I have A's in both of those classes. I also have an A in ballet, acting, and my chem lab.

I only have my Christian Scriptures final left, which I only need a 62 on in order to make an A.

This means I'll be finishing the semester with a 4.0. Yay!

Monday, December 15, 2008


It's below freezing here in Waco, and the wind chill factor is around 20. I am going to die.

I took my chemistry final this morning. I'm still waiting for the final grade, but I feel really good about it. I have to get a 90 in order to get an A in the class, and I think I got a 92. Think, don't know. Still waiting to find out.

I have my sociology final in 2 hours. My final performance in acting is tomorrow morning, and my final in Scriptures is Wednesday morning.

The next couple of days are going to be relatively quiet and uneventful, probably, because everybody is leaving. Stephen has probably left already, Jordan is leaving tonight, Taylor, Austin, and Anna are leaving tomorrow morning, and my roommates are leaving tomorrow afternoon. Shane and Emma are the only ones also staying through Wednesday. I think we're planning on playing monopoly tomorrow night. Yay...

Michelle Kick is still the coolest. She took me out to lunch with her and Tracey yesterday after church. Turns out she and my "adopted" Uncle Tim work together. Small world.

Well I've got studying, cleaning, and packing to do. Missing all of my Baylor friends already. Stay safe, awesome, and warm y'all. If God decides to so bless me I will see all of you again in 2009!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Quiet+me=Deep scary thoughts

I am so weird.

I am in the middle of dead week right now. Nothing happens during the day. Nothing. I am supposed to have 24 free hours every day to study for finals. I actually have time and quiet. I should be relaxing and taking this time to study for finals, without stressing out.

Apparently, quiet and I do not work well together. You know what I end up doing? I end up thinking. That's right, thinking. What about? I start thinking about the fact that I am growing up. I start thinking about all the stuff that goes with growing up. And by all...I mean all. Buying a car. Maintaining a car. Buying an apartment. Buying groceries. Making a budget. Getting insurance. Getting my own credit card. Getting my own bank account, apart from my parents.

So what do I do with some of my down time from studying? I start googling and researching these topics. No joke.

And then I start thinking about how much I still have to do NOW before I actually really, truly have to think about some of the above things. Looking into studying abroad summer 2010. Applying for a job at the SLC next semester. Applying for the missions trip to Africa.

Then, tonight, I looked at my space around me and freaked out because it was messy, and I wondered how I ever thought I could be an adult and think about all these different things when I can't even keep my space clean. So I went on a cleaning rampage. The space is not completely clean yet, but a lot if it is clean, and that makes me feel better. I'll clean the rest tomorrow.

Oh my goodness, I am so weird.

At the same time, I feel that I'm finally growing up.

But this sudden "responsibility rampage" of mine (as a friend called it) still has me a little weirded out. I am so odd...

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Time flies...

I think it just hit me for the first time today that I am an adult, and with that brings a whole host of responsibilities that I am not sure I'm prepared for. I'll figure it out eventually, though. I kinda have to. Yay for living on my own...

In other news...the December Ft. Worth swing dance was on Friday. Drove there and back with Stephen, which was really nice because I actually like the way he drives. I've become picky about the way people drive. Got to dance with a lot of good people while in Ft. Worth. I also got to meet Stephen's sister Michelle. The two could seriously pass for twins without trouble. Michelle is such a sweet and fun girl. I like her. :)

Austin turned 20 on Monday. We celebrated on Sunday by going out to Olive Garden for dinner, then going to Season's Creamery and eating cheesecake that Anna made and cookies that Stephen made. They were really good.

Tuesday was the swing dance pajama jam. Lots of fun, though very tiring. I played billiards with Bennett, Stephen and Taylor. Bennett and Taylor made one team, Stephen and I made another. Bennett and Taylor won by default when Stephen scratched the 8 ball, but we decided to keep playing anyways and somehow I managed to win for us. Turns out I don't suck quite as bad as I used to. I even managed to sink a ball shooting behind my back. Still don't know how I managed that one. We managed to stuff 6 people into Taylor's 5 person car to carpool over to the party, so I made sure to get a ride with Stephen back so we didn't have to go through that again. We talked about the whistle Stephen's car does in cold weather and the Trans-siberian orchestra.

Tonight was decorate your leader night at Awana. I have pictures at the link below (no, I was not the leader who got decorated):

Tomorrow night I'm eating dinner with my sociology professor's family. I'm so excited.

I have so much to do over the next few days and Christmas break. Apply for the Africa missions trip, apply for a job at the SLC next semester, sign up to take summer courses at ACC, look into hospital volunteering over the summer, look into going abroad summer 2010, find out if I'm going back to my old lifeguarding job this summer or looking for a new one, deciding if I want to intern with Awana this summer, etc...

And I should be asleep so I can get up and spend tomorrow (today, technically) productively. Studying for finals (chemistry especially), working out at the SLC, lunch with friends, dinner with the Doughertys...

'Night everyone.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Little Things

I have found since coming to Baylor that I notice the little things a lot more now. It seems almost any nice gesture of any sort will brighten up my day.

Today in church, "Hey, I was sitting back there and I noticed you so I thought I would move up here."

Michelle Kick, you are the best :)

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Something I've been contemplating...and I really want to know your thoughts

Where is "home"?

The answer to that question used to be easy. Home was wherever the people I loved were. Specifically, that meant Austin, TX.

But that definition isn't really working for me right now. My family is in Austin, and some of my best friends are there too. But now that I've basically established a completely different life for myself here in Waco, I've got a set of friends here that I know love me and accept me for who I am. They will be there for me when I need them, stick by my side when I'm going through a difficult time or simply riding a random girly emotional roller coaster, and sit down and have deep conversations with me. Jordan, Stephen, Taylor, Anna, Austin...they're all here.

When I'm in Waco, I miss my family and friends in Austin.
When I'm in Austin, I miss my friends from Waco.

So where is home? Is it Austin or Waco? Or do I have two homes? Or do I not have a home...?

I considered defining "home" as wherever my family is, but somehow now that I'm technically an adult and establishing my own life separate from my family, that definition doesn't quite seem appropriate.

Maybe I'm just stuck in this home-less phase until I get married, then "home" will be wherever my husband is.

I don't know...what I do know is that I am now really, really dreading moving to Dallas in 2010. Imagine, having THREE homes!

But in all seriousness...what is "home"? This is not a rhetorical question. I really want to hear your thoughts on this.

Adorable Awana moments

So tonight before Awana started, one of my sparkies, Kameron, pulled a candy bracelet out of his pocket and said "I got you this for Thanksgiving." "Awww, thanks!" I said. "It has a heart," he continued, "It stands for I love you." It was freakin' adorable. "Awww, how sweet!" I opened up the bracelet and put it on.

Five minutes later, his sister comes over and Kameron pulls out another candy bracelet, to which she promptly exclaims, "Those are MINE!" Uh oh. "You stole them!" "Kameron!" I said, "Did you steal these bracelets from your sister?" "We share the same candy jar," he replied. "Yeah, but those are MY Hannah Montana bracelets!" his sister retorted. I felt quite bad. "So, this bracelet is actually yours?" I asked. "Yes, but you can keep it," she said. "Awww, thank you sweetheart," I said, and she gave me a hug. It was really sweet.

Despite his misguided actions, Kameron really is a sweet kid. Later that night he gave me his coloring page (just like he does every week, it's so sweet), only this time across the top it said "I love you Ms. Lee". AWWWWWWW!

I'm kind of sad, though, because his mom told me tonight that they're moving to Abilene in February. So sad.

And while walking down the stairs from story time to game time, Madelynn grabbed my hand and held on the entire way down. Not because she needed me to help her in getting down the stairs. Just because she wanted to. My heart just melted.

I really really really love my sparkies. I look forward to seeing them every week. It's obvious that they really look up to me and think I'm one of the greatest things on planet earth. I'm guaranteed a lot of love and laughter every week. I don't know what I would do without my time with them every week. Go crazy, probably. Just being with them reminds me of so many things...I think hanging around little kids helps bring everything into perspective. The way they view the world is so refreshing. Sure, it's limited, but at the same time I wonder if it's more in focus than mine. The way everything excites them, and they love you because you'

It also reminds me that there is a world outside of Baylor...a world that is composed of more than college kids. Seriously. In any given week, my only interaction with non-college kids is with my professors, with maybe my adoptive family at church (of whom I really need to see more of), and with the sparks on Wednesdays. As much as I love Taylor and Jordan and Stephen, and Austin and Anna, and Shane and Emma, and all my other friends...I really think that if I were to only hang out with them, my life would be incomplete. Interaction with other generations is something I desperately need. My Sparkies are a Godsend to help with that. They remind me that the world is fresh and new, exciting and full of possibilities...and that life is amazingly simple.

I love my Sparkies so much.

Next week is "decorate your leader" night. My kids are really excited about that. I'll definitely be taking my camera...should have some interesting pictures :)