A Sunday Really Funday

Kenny and Amanda came to visit us last weekend, and we are big time missing them. They brought their boat down so we could all spend a day on Lake Rayburn catching and releasing fish. Some of us got caught, too. Ok, it was me. I stepped on a hook, and Kenny had to perform a ‘trick’ to get it out. But all is well and they didn’t throw me back in the water.

The guys were longing to see an alligator, and sadly we came up empty handed. And by sadly, I mean Amanda and I were madly cheering from the inside out. BUT we did see two bald eagles! And one of them may or may not have been flying an American flag from his talons. Let freedom ring.

The three of them formed the ‘cool club’ as they sported their fishing shirts. I’d like to say they were gracious about my role as an outsider, but one of them…oh husband of mine…kept rubbing it in my sunscreened face.  So, I will proudly announce that I caught a bigger fish than him, and since this is my blog, he has no say in the matter. We wore my iphone battery down to the ground with the 90-something pictures we snapped.

Kenny was right. It was awesome. We laughed constantly at things that now remain as inside jokes among the four of us. We marveled at nature and gained insight on new subjects. We relaxed for hours and allowed our worries to drift away. And we floated to shore as the setting sun outlined our tired silhouettes. The sun was down and the day was over but the joy, energy and life taken away will sustain us for some time, until we meet again.
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“Don’t worry, guys. It wasn’t a fish.”

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May Reflections

may copyDear Blog Every Day in May,

You were so hard. I loved you. And I hated you. When I first decided to take part in the challenge, I assumed everyone would stop reading my blog out of annoyance of my every day posting. Whoa, hello opposite day! So many people went out of their way to tell me how much they enjoyed what I was doing, so many thanks to them for the encouragement!

Blogging every day turned out to be a challenge in more ways than one. The obvious was finding the creativity, time and energy to write an actual post every 24 hours that I felt proud to publish. Some days it just didn’t happen, but I managed to get it out the next day…or the next. There’s still two topics I’m waiting to write- “Letting go” and “A letter to your readers.” You forced me to expand my writing process. Usually thoughts come to me, I think for a few days, I write, come back to it, edit, come back and publish. You didn’t give me that luxury, and it helped me grow. While there were some nights I dreaded pushing publish because I felt rushed and knew it wasn’t my best work, you forced me to practice sitting down, take on a topic and do the best I could in limited time. Sometimes I felt inadequate and other times I beat myself up for not getting a post out on time, but you helped me improve in areas that my own self discipline doesn’t always dictate, and for anything that helps develop my writing, I am grateful.

Toward the end of the month, you got a little heavy for me. Posts like this and that were quite frankly unpleasant. My thoughts wouldn’t turn off. Instead of stopping at my top 3 worst traits, my mind spent the next few days focusing on all of my bad characteristics. Constantly thinking of new ones. It got ugly in there. And then this post, wow, I’m still recovering. Since then I’ve thought of every single topic I want to publicly rant about but can’t. With Walker’s ministerial position and my own desire for harmony and positivity, I got frustrated with the idea that I’m not really allowed to rant. But in the end, I’m beyond happy to have that accountability. I’d rather not be known for ranting, offending or in some cases being downright annoying. Let’s be clear though, there is a difference in ranting verses raising awareness and speaking up for something worthy.

You forced me to push myself and open up, to lean into vulnerability and to meditate on topics I normally wouldn’t. You made me remember back, applaud others, fine tune my creativity and look past perfection. I loved linking up and seeing what other bloggers were saying about your crazy topics. You were hard and sometimes draining, but I’m actually going to miss you. I’m hoping you’ve encouraged me to write more, expand my subject areas and express myself without the need for perfection every time. So, thanks Blog Every Day in May, I hope we meet again! Just not in June.

Goodbye May. Hello Summer.

Love, Katelyn

‘I remember it all very well looking back…”

Blog Every Day in May: Five songs or pieces of music that speak to you or bring back memories.

My first thought of ‘memorable songs’ was my mom jumping on my bed in the mornings singing ‘good morning to you, good morning to you, we’re all in our places with bright shiny faces. this is the way to start a good day!’ But I couldn’t find that one online anywhere…

I’m realizing how ridiculously random this little assortment of songs is going to be. And I don’t consider them to be a fitting representation of my current musical taste, but I guess they do show that I’m a fan of all genres. Except 90’s rock bands. They fit together in absolutely no way, except for the whole bringing back memories part. It’s actually hard for me to post such an non-cohesive collection, but it’s nearing the end of this challenge so I’m going for it.

Fancy. Reba is my girl. Some might say homegirl. And we can all agree that this song + the music video is her greatest ever. Did you know I cried when I first saw her in concert? Did I mention I was 23? I wish I could even begin to list off my memories involving Reba, but I bet anyone reading this who knows me can think of one!

You’re Beautiful. Phil Wickham. I walked down the aisle to this song, and I love it as much now as I did then.

Mobile. Oh Avril Lavigne. I picked this song as representative of her entire ‘Let Go’ album as it was pretty much the soundtrack of my summer in Spain. I think it pumped me up into feeling independent and strong.

Como la flor. Selena. Because Selena deserves to be in everyone’s top 5 most memorable songs. Period. Also, let’s talk about how offended I got when the first option for ‘Selena’ was Selena Gomez.

Chasing cars. Snow Patrol. My college roommates and I used to lay on the floor, hold hands and listen to this song. I don’t remember if we were relaxing, cherishing the moment or being some kind of emo, but I do know I miss those days.

BONUS!

Next to me. Emeli Sande. My current jam. Opal and I have dance parties 4-6 times per week to this song. Occasionally Walker joins in, you know, next to me.

I wish I had time to talk about The Lizzie McGuire Soundtrack we listened to endlessly in high school…

Jare Bear’s Feet

Day 26, Sunday: Something you read online. Leave a link and discuss, if you’d like.

Holy cow, I might have actually caught up with the challenge today.

LOVE

Be Where Your Feet Are

Our good friend, Jared, wrote this a few weeks ago. It’s been a rough year for him, but in joy or pain he wants to be present. To be where his feet are. To feel and experience life with each breath he takes. He’s wise. He’s thoughtful. He’s real. Thanks for writing this, friend, and for leading us all to linger a little longer.

Nosey

Blog Every Day in May, Saturday: Something someone told you about yourself that you’ll never forget (good or bad).a pug's guide to etiquetteGrowing up, a lady in my church once told me I had a pug nose. A nose like a pug. When I think of a pug, I picture a smushed, wet, turned-up nose that barely allows air to go in an out. A nose that snorts. The lady meant no harm and even went on to explain that I had a cute nose, but I will definitely never forget it. Whenever I think of myself, I picture a pug nose. I have no idea if I actually have one or not, but I just assume I do because of that comment.

I tried really hard to think of something else for this post, but in the end this memory just kept coming back to me. So I figured this would be the most honest answer I could give.

I found this book over the weekend in Urban Outfitters and took a pic for my pug-loving parents (maybe that’s why they love me? for my nose?). I guess I’d better get to reading!

What an uplifting topic

Blog Every Day in May, Friday: Your top 3 worst traits.

1. I judge the judgmental. I tend to be pretty open-minded, until I happen upon someone who is not, and then I judge them. So maybe I should start judging myself?

2. Hard on myself. If I forget to smile at a stranger, say something that is misunderstood, don’t do my best on an assignment or get behind on these blog posts, I can spend a whole day beating myself up.

3. Sometimes without meaning to, in the first 5 minutes of meeting someone I decide if I will be friends with a person or not. Some of my greatest friends are people I thought I wouldn’t be friends with. Glad I have friends in my life that are much better better people than me.20130525-223227.jpg

^^how this post makes me feel^^

BONUS: I might not survive a zombie apocalypse. With Stacia currently in town, Walker and her have been engrossed in The Walking Dead. All the while I sit there too, loudly professing that I don’t want to watch another minute. But minutes go by and so did 6 episodes. Walker declared I would absolutely not be on his team should zombies begin to take over. Stacia said she’d think about it, and they’ve been making me prove myself all weekend. Ah, it feels good to be a maybe!

Pancakes kill

Thursday’s Blog Every Day in May: Things you’ve learned that school won’t teach you.

If your car smells like syrup, it’s not an advertising scheme from Aunt Jemima or an added blessing from the dealership. It’s a poisonous gas leaking from the heater core. One time in grad school my car started smelling like syrup. We’re talking ‘wow, that smells so good they should make it a candle scent’ or ‘oh my gosh! let’s go to Ihop right now for pancakes.’ I let the aroma fill my car just like I would let the smell of baking cookies fill my kitchen…for months. Most people commented on how good my ‘air freshener’ smelled while others just thought it was strange. Only after a few too many trips to Ihop (yes, seriously) and a good dose of curiosity did I think to google the cause. A harmful, poisonous gas leak that needs immediate attention. I’m sure I’ll end up dying 10 years early from those months of exposure, but it sure did provoke a healthy appetite.20130525-215629.jpg

Cheer ’em on!

Blog Every Day in May, Day 22: Rant about something. Get up on your soapbox and tell us how you really feel.

My vision for this space is to document an honest account of our life- to focus on the joy life brings while also being true to reality. The reality that life isn’t always as pretty as edited photos and crafted words. Here on this blog we choose to remember all of the emotions and circumstances that life presents, even the tough ones. But overall, I try to keep it positive, so I don’t feel comfortable or have any desire to rant. I’ve got people in my life that occassionally get an ear-full, but I’m not going to make you become those people!

So today, I choose not to rant. I choose to RAVE!

Cheer ’em on Round Deux!!

Husband, we might be the couple that is more likely to sarcastically make fun of each other rather than publicly ooh and aah over one another, but we just call it affection. So in rare form (and somewhat nervous/way to vulnerable for my comfort zone form) I will share with the world (or 81 followers) just a little bit of why I love you.

You get more excited than any person I know. Whether it be seeing new sights on a trip, bowling a strike or simply driving by a Chicken Express, you muster more enthusiasm than most people do over the birth of a baby. You make me laugh even when I try my hardest not to enjoy your jokes. With your job you don’t always make everyone happy, and let’s be honest- some people are just always mad at you, but you still manage to treat them with genuine kindness every day. You’re willing to say the first ‘I’m sorry’ even when I’m obviously the one at fault and you’re beyond loving to  your family, my family, our family. You cry at commercials, call all of my girlfriends your ‘ladies’ and even though you’re verbal with your feelings, you accept and support that I’m nonverbal. You’re always the first to help a stranger in need and you give so generously even when I’m like ‘put that money back in your pocket.’ So, Walker, I support you, I’m proud of you and I’m cheering you on! popsicles in the parkpopsicles in the park 2popsicles in the park 3popsicles in the park 4

Go cheer someone on today. It’ll make their day. And yours.

My people

Sunday’s challenge: Get real. Share something you’re struggling with right now.

Apparently I’m struggling at getting these posts out on time, BUT I am getting them out at some point, so booyah. And no, autocorrect, I don’t want to change booyah to boyar. What the heck is a boyar?

I don’t really have it in me to talk about my own struggles right now. And no, it’s not because I don’t have my own challenges. There’s plenty of stuff that is currently preoccupying my mind. Stressful stuff. Heavy stuff. But with that being said, when I think about my “stuff” compared other people’s “stuff” right now, I don’t really think it’s fair to call mine struggles. I guess I’m struggling with how many people I know who are struggling right now. So for now, I will be grateful for my tiny issues, because they are small and will probably pass. I’ll do what I can and try to bear some of the burden with those people who are hurting right now- through friendship, through thoughts and actions, through presence. I’ll do my best to walk alongside them in all of it. I just wish they didn’t have to walk through it at all.

Ps. I’m an information fanatic, so of course I now know that a boyar was a member of a Russian nobility class ranking just below the princes until the time of Peter 1. You’re welcome.