Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Top Ten Tuesday II

Top Ten Tuesday II

I went out to breakfast at Denny's this morning, so my topic today will be the top ten breakfast foods.

After this week, we will venture out and explore new horizons, shoving aside "food" as a topic for awhile. It will be hard, but I know it can be done.

1. French Toast, made with cinnamon, drizzled with maple syrup and powdered sugar
2. Pancakes with M&M's in them (seriously, you must try it- it's amazing)
3. Breakfast casserole- the kind with eggs, bacon, ham, and cheese
4. A big, gooey cinnamon roll from Java Tropics
5. A bowl of steaming oatmeal with brown sugar
6. Rice Krispies with slices of banana and a little bit of sugar sprinkled on top
7. Eggs, sunny-side up, with bacon and toast (the toast you get from restaurants that is soaked in butter)
8. Cinnamon rolls from The Confectionary
9. Donuts from Kroger- preferrably, the cinnamon twist (my dad always used to take me after the paper-route on Saturday mornings so that I had breakfast while I watched cartoons)
10. Fresh Krispe Kreme donuts, regular or chocolate-iced

Great. Now I'm making myself hungry. Figures. Anyway, I just want to note that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and *stepping up on soap box* I think it is so important to eat something for it. I personally feel sick most mornings but I try to force food down... sometimes, it's so convenient to skip it, but with all of the amazing choices above, why would you ever think of it again?

Eating breakfast helps you to preform better in school, at work, or doing whatever you are doing, as well as helping you to feel better and keep your mood elevated. It also aids us to maintain a healthy weight. Below are some facts I found from an article on BBC News.

"They found that people who ate breakfast every day were a third less likely to be obese compared to those who skipped the meal.

In addition, they were half as likely to have blood-sugar problems, which increase the risk of developing diabetes or having high cholesterol, which is a known risk factor for heart disease.

The researchers believe that eating first thing in the morning may help to stabilise blood sugar levels, which regulate appetite and energy.

They suggest people who eat breakfast are less likely to be hungry during the rest of the day and are, therefore, less likely to overeat."

A couple weeks ago at church, Ted Witzig was saying how we often go on diets to lose weight. He was comparing how we eat physical food to feed our body to eating spiritual food to feed our soul. He commented, "You should never go on a spiritual diet."

So true! If we do, our spiritual life will start to starve. We were actually talking about this at girl's bible study last week, and a girl noted that often when we are starving physically, pretty soon we get so hungry that we don't even feel hungry anymore. That can also happen spiritually- if we cut off devotion and prayer for too long, we start to become numb to it and we don't even desire it anymore. Sad, but true.

The answer to this problem: Don't skip breakfast!

I love you all!


Sunday, January 29, 2006

Run Forrest, Run!

At about 2:30 p.m. today, our house became an orphanage.

My Grandma Kaiser has a time-share in Florida at Sea Club V, and every year, my sisters and their husbands go down there to stay for a week. This year, my mom and Aunt flew my Grandma down, and now my sisters (Tonya & Brad, Tasha & Tom) flew down tonight to stay w/her (and enjoy the warm sun and time on the beach!)

Needless to say, the kidlets got dropped off here. Actually, we only have three: Domniq & Sophia, and then Naomi. I got to watch them all afternoon, and I truly do love them SO much. I just want to note how blessed I am. As the baby of the family, I have enjoyed the best of both worlds throughout the years: the world of being the spoiled baby sister in a time of sibling rivalry when we all lived at home, and now a time of being an "only child" with some great brother-in-laws, a sister-in-law, and adorable nieces and nephews. *sigh* Could life get any better?

Guess what else I did this afternoon? I watched half of "Forrest Gump." Normally, this wouldn't be that exciting, but it is, because I've never seen it. *GASP* I know. It's sad. Anyway, I enjoyed what I DID see. Totally wasn't what I expected, but I liked it. I now know why the two famous quotes are "Life is like a box of chocolates" and "Run, Forrest, RUN!"

Here are some pictures of my prides and joys:




Domniq & Noah



Friday, January 27, 2006


The is it.

The results are in.

Coming in at first place is number 3, a homemade skillet cookie with 2 scoops of vanilla ice cream, hot fudge, and a cherry.

With only one vote less EACH, second and third place goes to:

6. A Strawberry Cheesecake blizzard from DQ, and
10. A Mocha Moo Latte from DQ.

An exciting piece of news for the week:

The inhabitants of the T House played their first game EVER on Wednesday night. While this is sad and almost unfathomable, we intend to make it a more regular practice.

The game of choice was Trivial Pursuit, only because that is one of the only games we have. It was again confirmed that I dislike the game, mainly because I am so bad at it. I am not the type of person who can store random bits of information in my head and readily retrieve them in a minute's notice. That's just not how my memory works. My dad, on the other hand, could tell you the weather forecast for all the cities in Illinois if he checked weather.com that day. Obviously, I didn't inherit this important trait from him.

Anyway, there is some about playing games that is just so FUN. Tracy ended up dominating Trish and I completely (we made up our own version of how to play), but it was still envoked laughter and happiness. AND it gave me an excuse to beat up Tracy. Tammy joined in on one round, and then diligently went back to her homework.

Last night was great: some U of I people made the trip to ISU Bible Study! I miss those guys. We had a great praise singing, packed full at The Fish Bowl. And, we ALL got to take home a gold fish! It was so great, the T House now has 4 fish. Just kidding, I made that up. But it would be cool if they did that.

Next, a test:

Most of you have probably seen or heard this before, but I came across it today and it made me smile, so here is to all of you who have never been enlightened by these 4 questions:

Q1. How do you put a giraffe into a refrigerator?

Correct Answer
Open the refrigerator, put in the giraffe and close the door.

This question tests whether you tend to do simple things in an overly complicated way.

Q2. How do you put an elephant into a refrigerator?

Wrong Answer:
Open the refrigerator, put in the elephant and close the refrigerator.

Correct Answer:
Open the refrigerator, take out the giraffe, put in the elephant and close the door.

This tests your ability to think through the repercussions of your actions.

Q3. The Lion King is hosting an animal conference. All the animals attend, except one. Which animal does not attend?

Correct Answer:
The elephant, since it is still in the refrigerator.

This tests your memory.

OK, even if you did not answer the first three questions correctly, you still have one more chance to show your abilities.

Q4. There is a river you must cross, but it is inhabited by crocodiles. How do you manage it?

Correct Answer:
You swim across. All of the crocodiles are attending the Animal Meeting!

This tests whether you learn quickly from your mistakes.

That's all I got for today. I love you all!


Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Top Ten Tuesday I

My blog needs something consistent and fun. Here is what I propose:

Top Ten Tuesdays.

Other than being inspired by Priscilla's Thurday Thirteens (thanks for the idea! :) I'm making this up as I go, so forgive the unorganization of it all.

Top Ten Tuesday posts will be made weekly, every Tuesday. I will post my top ten "somethings" of the week. These "somethings" could be memories, stories, activities, verses, movies, foods... WHATEVER. The topic will be whatever I feel like, yet I am open to requests.... I'm all about pleasing the audience.

The only rule for Top Ten Tuesday posts is that if you comment, you must include what number of the top ten is your favorite, and why.

Let's start off nice 'n easy, with a subject dear to my heart as I worked at Dairy Queen for 6 years.

Today's Top Ten Tuesdays's Topic: Ice Cream Creations.

1. A-top a sugar cone from 31 Flavors: a scoop of mint chocolate chip on the bottom, and a scoop of chocolate-peanutbutter on top (anyone who went to Florida with me knows this.)

2. A peanutbutter cup blizzard from DQ with chocolate ice cream and brownie chunks.

3. A homemade skillet cookie with 2 scoops of vanilla ice cream, hot fudge, and a cherry.

4. A homemade brownie with 2 scoops of vanilla ice cream, hot fudge, and a cherry.

5. A Chocolate Extremem blizzard from DQ (includes cocoa fudge, brownie chunks, and chocolate chips)

6. A Strawberry Cheesecake blizzard from DQ.

7. A Brownie Earthquake from DQ (2 balls of soft serve surrounded by a pair of Oreo brownie wedges, with hot fudge and marshmallow sauce drizzled on top, finished off with a couple of schoops of Oreo pieces and some whipped cream)... I also get mine with caramel sauce

8. A swirl cone from DQ dipped in chocolate

9. A Banana Split (DQ)

10. A Mocha Moo Latte from DQ

I'll anxiously await the results...

I love you all, T.

Saturday, January 21, 2006


At 2:30 p.m., I sat down at my computer to start working on my portfolio. It is now 7:42 p.m. and I have not budged since then.

Ok, maybe I got up a few times to get a drink or change my CD. But other than that, I have been extremely concentrated on my project. You could have brought in a band and started marching around me with drums, trumpets, and horns, and I probably wouldn't have noticed.

The good news is that we know I'm in the right major; I don't know many other people who would sit down for 5 hours and work at a computer unphased. Most of my friends would rather eat grass. Of course, I could never be on my feet for 12 hour shifts like others, so it takes all kinds. I am nowhere near done (ok, MAYBE halfway), but I have found a way to do what I want to do, so that excites me! I am creating my multimedia portfolio in something called iDVD, a simple program that comes with the operating system of a Mac if you get one. I won't bore you with multimedia jibberish, because most of you either a.) don't care, or b.) don't know what I'm talking about, but I will just say that it offers me a way to include past PowerPoints, videos, graphic design, photography, and audio into my portfolio, and that makes me VERY happy!

Yesterday, I learned a lot of html coding in one of my classes. It is quite thrilling; I can now create a website by typing a little code into a text editor and saving it as an .htm... wow! The joys of web design.

A Starbucks mocha frappucino is sounding REALLY good right now. Does anyone want to go get me one? There are none in Morton. Hey, we got a Steak 'n Shake, so I'd say a Starbucks is in order.

I'm quite scattered right now, but I'm going to attempt focusing myself. Then I'm going to get up from this chair and try not to exert all of my pent-up energy too fast. So here's my topic:

"Trusting Always."

Ok, here it is... often times, it's EASY to trust God when everything is going our way. The car started this morning. There was milk in the refridgerator when I fixed a bowl of cereal. I still had a job when I walked into work. My teacher showed up for class to teach me. I was able to work out at the gym. There is enough money in your bank account to pay the bills. Etcetera.... It's easy to trust God when we can trust that our life is how we want it.

But what if the car didn't start? The milk man didn't show up? You lost your job? Your teacher failed you? You broke your leg? You got a little low on finanaces?

Suddenly, your life looks a little bit less in control, and it's time to turn to God.

Ah ah ah, "turn to God." Why weren't you there before? Because everything was great. We should be ALWAYS trusting God, even if life DOES seem grand, because it doesn't take much to throw you off, and if your focus isn't where it should be, life can get bad really fast.

Often times, when things in my life happen which are contrary to my liking, it causes me to examine a newer, better perspective... the ETERNAL perspective. It reminds me that, "Hey Taryn, this life isn't all there is, so stop consuming yourself with it." It reminds me that my job here on earth is far beyond going to college, working at a job, or paying the bills. It is essentially a pre-requisite to Heaven, and how we perform in this "class" is going to affect us eternally. Am I so wrapped up in the "questions, comments, and concerns" of this world that I overlook the real reason I'm here in the first place? It's important to lead a reasonable life while here, but WHERE is the focus and where is my trust?

Time to eat!

I love you all!


Monday, January 16, 2006

Beware of the Unexpected

I just got done buying a book about making web pages on Amazon.com for a class. Welcome back to life at ISU, Taryn. I was suppossed to have the book for tomorrow in class- oops!- I found out, upon reading the syllabus. Oh, well. It's good to be back! I arrived tonight and immediately went into a cleaning/organizing frenzy. I cleaned out our refridgerator, which had numerous mysterious items as well as previous dinners saved in plastic containers that were growing mold. Our freezer didn't look much better- let's just say that I did a lot of pitching. After cleaning the kitchen and then organizing my room, I was able to enjoy a bowl of Cocoa Crispies. As much as I love having a month break, I am really looking forward to getting back into the groove of school and work. It makes the weeks FLY by! I think it's crazy that next year at this time, it will be my LAST semester!

Exploring new horizons... okay, so since my last post semi-ripped on my wonderful friend, Kristi, this post will definitely redeem her extreme blonde hair moment (of the year). Let's rewind a couple of weeks. I am sitting in the condo in Florida, and my cell rings. I answer the "Pea #2" call and lo and behold, it is Kristi reserving me for supper with her and Heather for the next Saturday night. I oblige, and it's settled.

I didn't really think much of it again until this weekend.

"Are we still doing supper?" I asked Kristi.

"Yeah, if you want," she says. I readily agree, and we make plans for Chile's at 7. Heather and Kristi came to my house a little after 7 to pick me up, and on the way, they start talking about Texas Roadhouse.

"If we go there, I'll be really sad. I was getting all pumped for Chile's chips and salsa, and fajitas," I proclaim.

"We'll go to Chile's, and if the wait isn't too bad, then we'll stay," Kristi told me.

"Alright." Well, we get there and the hostess takes us to a table right away. As we walk in, I look to the right and see my friend from High School, Kristin, sitting by my room mate, Tammy. I though it was kind of odd they were together.

"Hi girls," I say, glad to see people I know in one of my favorite restaurants, and then I keep walking to our table

Wait. By now, Kristi and Heather have stopped, and I turn to find the WHOLE table is filled with all my friends... someone says, "Taryn, this is for you!" and I finally catch on. SURPRISE!

Yes, I was surprised. Kristi did a brilliant job of pulling this one off. She said it was very hard to keep from accidently blurting it out to me every time she was with me, but she did a great job of keeping it on the down-low! She is also a very sweet and thoughtful friend for thinking of it, as well. I had never had a surprise ANYTHING before then, so it was very special for me! (Heather also helped get this together, lest the credit fails to be due her. Thanks, H, for all your work!)

The best part of Chile's was our waiter. He was the theatrical type who actually made it to the 2nd round of American Idol. He personally sang the song "Happy Birthday" to me... wow. He had a great voice! After that, we went back to Kristi's and played games and ate brownies and peanutbutter cup ice cream. Yum.

That night, my cousin, Kelly, and I had some good memory-sharing. Here are 5 great memories:

1. Making up a song about our cats and recording it on tape
2. Gymnastics routines... preforming and judging
3. Hide the Beanie Baby
4. Doing "creative stuff"
5. Our pet Caterpillars- Herman and Soda. Soda got ran over by a skateboard, and Herman ran away.

Isn't it weird how one memory snowballs into a whole plethora of memories... or rather, a chunk of lifetime that is unforgettable and irreplacable? It's like a chain reaction. You think of one time, and your whole mind explodes into a trip down memory-lane. I love it. I love laughing about it.

I also wanted to hit on Sunday's sermon material-- Isaiah 55. I decided that it would be an excellent chapter to memorize. It's my goal after finishing Colossians 3, which is sort of on "idle" right now (after my last post, I am convicted to make better progress), so hopefully I will be in Isaiah soon!

Some key verses:

Isaiah 6-12
"Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are you ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it myay give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that while I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands."

I love that last one... ye shall go out with JOY, and be lead forth with PEACE, and the mountains and hills shall BREAK FORTH before you in SINGING, and all the trees of the field shall CLAP their HANDS.

It is also a good reminder to see that God's thoughts and ways are so high above our own; some days, it is hard to understand why things are the way they are, but it is because we are using our own inadequate human mind to try to process the Almighty's ways. Of course we won't grasp it all; we shouldn't be able to! Thus, the beauty of faith...

Another important truth of Isaiah can be found in Isaiah 3:10-11.
10 Say ye tot he righteous that it shall be well with him: for they shall eat the fruit of their doings.
11 Woe unto the wicked! it shall be ill with him: for the reward of his hands shall be given him.

This is encouragement that the righteous will eventually, if not by already being blessed, will reap what they sow, and the wicked will receive their punishment! It's easy to look around and see awful people attain wealth, prestige, rank, and respect... of the world, yet still become "jealous." It's not necessary to become jealous of worldy fame; instead, it is essential to desire Christ's approval.

Verse 11 actually served as a warning to me as I read it... not because I am categorized with the wicked, but because I come in contact with many who are, and I don't want them to go to Hell! As Christians, it is a challenge to help them to realize the verses like 11 so that they can find hope in verses like 10!

These two verses are a good pair to memorize and take with you...

There is one person out there reading this blog post- person, you know who you are- and my challenge to you is to memorize those 2 verses. I know you can do it.

I love you all!


p.s. Here are pictures... sorry they are posted a little late... just trying to please the crowd. :)

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Yellow Hair Seconds

Yesterday afternoon, Kristi was over and we were making chocolate chip cookies. I almost have the recipe memorized, so I was shooting off instructions to Kristi.

"Go preheat the oven to 375 degrees," I told her.

I finished putting a cup of brown sugar in my bowl, and then look down to see Kristi kneeling in front of our dishwasher.

"Taryn, where's the temperature dial?" she asked, starting to get really confused.

It was then that I had to pinch myself incredulously, hoping that this was a dream.

No, actually, we both just laughed really hard and I joked that she had spent too much time being my friend. My intense "blonde moments" were starting to rub off on her... but Kristi is a blonde, anyway, so she's REALLY in trouble. :)

Aside from her trying to preheat my dishwasher, the cookies turned out pretty good!

That night, 2 of my other high school friends- Kristin and Marla- came over for a night of games. We had fun and laughed a lot- we all were rubbing our tummys after awhile, a little sore from so much laughter.

Earlier in the evening before Kristin came over, Marla, Kristi and I were sitting around watching old videos we had made from Jr. High and High school (blackmail embarassments, to say the least.) We had ordered pizza, and Kristi and I were sitting on the couch stuffing our faces with pizza and breadsticks while Marla sat calmly next to us on a chair. Well, supper wouldn't be complete without me spilling something, so down goes the pizza sauce that I was dipping my breadstick into and the sauce splattered all over the carpet, couch, and Kristi's sock and jeans. Seriously. That pizza sauce is in sane. It's splatter course has quite the diameter. After getting some cleaning products out and scrubbing the floor, we all resume a quiet meal of pizza until about 3 minutes later. Kristi takes a drink out of one of my mom's glass purple goblets, and goes to set it down on the floor, but it slips out of her hand and the whole glass just shatters EVERYWHERE. I kid you not- those goblets shatter like none other. AFter picking up glass pieces and pitching them into a garbage can, and then sweeping up the remaining shards, we all settled down to finish our pizza.

Wow. You would think we needed a baby-sitter or something. We preheat dishwashers, spill food, and break glasses...

Sometimes I wonder why I have enough humility to admit things like this. Some of my friends shake their heads at me because of the stories I tell... but in all honesty, I find that I always try to find humor in situaitons where I could just feel really dumb. If you can't laugh at life, you've let it overcome you... and trust me, I've learned that laughing at stupidity can be a lot of fun. It's good memory-making, it's good future potluck subject matter, it's good stuff. Did I just say potluck? You can tell I'm AC.

I've taken the liberty of posting 2 pictures: One that shows us in our dignity, and the other is a candid shot that I fell in love with the moment I saw it- I love candidness.

I mentioned before that for devotions, I am going to read through Paul's 13 letters in the New Testament. I have worked through the first letter, Galatians, and am now finishing up 1 Thessalonians. Let me share some great verses in chapter 5...

6 So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert and self-controlled.
8 But since we belong to the day, let us be self-controlled, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet.
13 Live in peace with each other.
14 Warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone.
15 Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else.
16 Be joyful always:
17 pray continually;
18 give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's wll for you in Christ Jesus.
19 Do not put out the Spirit's fire;
21 Test everything. Hold on to the good
22 Avoid every kind of evil

1 Thessalonians has some good stuff in it, but chapter 5 kind of pours on all the instruction... and what great instruction it is! If we all followed even just the verses I posted above, we'd be in good shape. It teaches us to live holy, self-controlled, peace-filled and joyful lives, showing us that we should be thankful and good!

I am not going to dissect every verse, or else we'd be here all night; a lot of them speak for themselves. However, the one verse that stuck out to me was "Warn those who are idle."

Have you ever been "idle?" The sad part about idleness is that it is easy to be an "idle" Christian and still look pretty good. You can go to church, attend bible studies, make meals for people, listen to the Christian radio station... but are you moving anywhere because of it, or are you just going through the motions? Don't let Christian living become an unconcious habit that consists of activities that you do just because you've always done them... I mean, keep doing them, but with fervor and joy for the Lord! Attend the bible studies to learn about the Word, not to socialize afterwards. Go to church to worship God, and not only becuase it's what you do every Sunday. Make a meal for someone because you truly want to give and it's a way to serve the Lord, and not only because it will make you look like a nice person. Listen to the Christian radio station and sing praises to the Lord! Sometimes it's hard to take our everyday "Christian" activities and always complete them with the attitude and motives that we should be having... after long, we become idle. Is our Christian walk a "walk" or a "stand-still?" It's good to do a little evaluation every once in awhile and assess where you're really at; what areas need more enthusiasm or zest? Which areas do we carry out like a zombie rather than a Christian on fire for the Lord? Is our Christian walk as active as it could be?

Let's be ready! A reminder as to why we are here and where we are going can help... it shifts the focus a little from self to Christ... from our kingdom to His.

"Avoid every kind of evil..." Today I heard a familiar song on WCIC that was like, "in the world, not of it..." Sometimes, it seems like it's impossible to avoid every kind of evil as soon as you step outside the door to your house, but it can be done if we remember to align the Word of God with our lives and coat it on our every word, thought, action, and deed. There's a big difference between being IN the world and being OF it.

I love you all!


Tuesday, January 10, 2006

11 Random Statements

I went to Steak 'n Shake with Kristi tonight.

I am addicted to online euchre.

I think dogs smell (therefore, I will never own one.)

If you substitue real chocolate with milk chocolate, you will age slower (I learned that on Oprah today).

Kristi is my friend.

If I could have one item attached to my body for the rest of my life, it would be a camera.

My cat, Belle, is my friend.

The weather should be sunny year-round.

Crocs are cool. Tacky- yet cool. And very comfortable.

The best feeling in the world is going to bed at night, knowing that you don't have to wake up to an alarm.

*singing....* "He's got the whole world in His hands.

And to close... I don't know what it is about being random, but I love to be it.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

FL cont.

Thursday, January 5

Tammy and Tracy's last day. Very sad day for them. It was also the first day without the boys... took us all awhile to recover from that one. Actually, we welcomed the girl time :) although I do have to say, it was much more relaxed and lazy, spent mostly lounging by the pool or on the beach. That night, we walked to a grill by the pier and ate supper. Good quality time before the two unfortunate T's had to leave early the next morning.

Friday, January 6

Trish and I slept in until after 10 in the king size bed... ahhh. Upon viewing the outside weather of cloudiness and a chilly 60 degrees, we caught a taxi and hit the mall for the day. After that, we walked to Borders and read awhile. That night, we went out to supper with Tricia's aunt and uncle and family. Fun times!

Saturday, January 7

Nice day.... absolutely perfect. Blue skies and high 60's with all sunshine. A bit chilly, but I'm not complaining! We lounged around until the afternoon when we went roller blading for a very long time... about 8-10 miles, then stopped for ice cream. Mmmmm. That night was a movie with Trish's cousin, Joe.

This was also a very unhealthy eating day for me. I'm very neutral towards it- I'm not the type to feel guilty about such a thing, especially on a vacation... I most just find humor in it:

Breakfast: small bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios
Lunch: Hotdog with ketchup and mustard and a Coke
Mid Afternoon Snack: Snickers Ice Cream bar
Late Afternoon Snack: Brownie sundae with chocolate peanutbutter ice cream
Supper: Half a bag of Large Popcorn and a Coke

That night for 3 hours, I edited a "Florida Trip 2006" movie with pictures, music, and video (including some pretty great skimboard wipe outs in the ocean). It will be a good keepsake... fun stuff!

Sunday, January 8

Church! Trish and I then enjoyed our LAST afternoon in the sun. Ahhh. We ate dinner with Trish's aunt and uncle and cousins- it was pretty mcuh amazing. We now sit and relax after packing.

I must say, this trip has been amazingly fun in more ways than one. I will soon be returning north to the cold.

On January 1, I finished reading through the Bible in a year. I was very excited to have completed that, but at the same time, kind of sad. I used a plan that I absolutely LOVED, and it kept me on a very strict reading schedule that I enjoyed immensely. Knowing that I would have to come up with something new kind of stressed me out, because I was so used to my reading plan that kept me scheduled.

I finally decided that the next thing I want to do is read through Paul's 13 letters in the New Testament. My friend and I put them in chronological order, so I want to read them in that order and work through them slowly. It will be good to dive in to God's Word a little deeper and slower, and it will also allow me great time to focus on memorization!

If anyone ever wants to try the plan I used to read through the Bible in a year, let me know. It was phenemonal... I loved it.
Mondays= law
Tuesdays= history
Wednesdays= psalms
Thursdays= poetry
Fridays= prophecy
Saturdays= Gospels
Sundays= Epistles

Go here http://www.christiananswers.net/q-eden/biblereading-1yr.html and check it out!

Alright. I'm out. I love you all, and will update in a few days when I'm home and settled in.


Wednesday, January 04, 2006


Saturday, December 31

I awake to my alarm at 4:05 a.m. after about 2 hours of sleep. Rolling over in bed for a couple more minutes, I give up and decide to get up. A half hour later, Tammy, Tracy and I are all piled into my little car to head to the air port.

We arrive in Fort Lauderdale after a slight wait in Chicago. At about 2 p.m., we got out to the beach for an afternoon in the sun. That night was New Year's Eve! After the church service, we hung out with a bunch of other people who was down in FL, which is practically half of central Illinois! They all came over to the place we were staying and we grilled out by the pool. Then, we had a guitar singing on the beach--so cool!-- and walked to the pier. It was SO cool to sing on the beach! Especially for New Year's Eve. We all got some great pictures by the singing Christmas tree by the pier, and you will see our "Yay!-We're excited it's New Year's Eve!" picture down below in front of the tree.

Sunday, January 1

Church, and then another afternoon on the beach. For supper, we were invited to Eric and Jaron Huber's grandparent's house for pizza. Ryan, Tim, and Will were also staying there. We had some amazing Little Ceasar's Pizza (seriously, that pizza is SO good), played Apples-to-Apples, and Will and I definitely won twice in a row as partners in Euchre. We then had another guitar singing for the Huber's grandparents, and they loved it.

Monday, January 2-- my birthday

I awake at 5:45 a.m. to one of Paul Simon's songs and my 3 favorite T's standing in the doorway of the room I was sleeping in, shouting, "Happy Birhtday!" They had made a sign for me and decorated the place in honor of my birthday. After that, the Huber's grandpa took us sailing! We drove to Miami early in the morning to hop on a sailboat and enjoy a great day of relaxation and rocking on the ocean. I had never been on a sailboat before, and it was great! We got to put up the main sail because it was so calm and perfect out. Some of the riders took some Bonine to brush off seasickness. I was not one of them. I actually welcome the slight rocking sensation as a comfort and an almost lull-to-sleep.

Anyway, it was a fun sun day on the boat with 10 people! What a great way to spend my 20th birthday. I will never forget it!

That night, we all went to California Pizza Kitchen... mmmm, mmmm good.

Tuesday, January 3

A great day on the beach... We girls lounged around the pool all morning. We had fun with the guys on the beach in the afternoon. Got some good skim-boarding in, and even a few great games of volleyball. We also made a great 31 Flavors run. That night, some of the people visiting and/or living in Fort Lauderdale gave us a great picnic supper. It was exactly what we needed after a busy day on the beach. We thanked them with some more singing. :-) Our little group of 9 was quite practiced up by now. There were actually a couple of new faces with us, including Amy and Tara Hohulin.

Wednesday, January 4

Today. Let me just say that the whole day consisted of a bright blue sky and the sun at a beautiful 80 degrees. Same as yesterday- pool, then beach, including some great beach volleyball and video capturing of good skim-board wipes in the ocean... an of course, another 31 Flavors run. :) We had to say a sad good-bye to the guys this afternoon, as they are leaving tonight to drive back home. We had a fun time with them this week, and it was great that our trips overlapped. We girls ARE looking forward to some great girl time tomorrow, though. :)

That catches us up to now. As you can see, it has been a very eventful and fun trip! And I get to stay here until Monday!

Alright, I'm out. I hope you are all enjoying icy Illinois in its cloudiness, and I will try to bring some sunshine home with me.

I love you all.