Thursday, March 29, 2012

we're ENGAGED!!! (3.24.12)

This post is WAY overdue! :)
Rhett and I are officially engaged as of Saturday, March 24, 2012.
It was a whirlwind of a weekend and life has yet to slow down in the wake, but we've accomplished SO MUCH in the past few days. I'm getting ahead of myself. Let's start at the beginning. Well, not really the beginning. Let's start on Friday...


Rhett went to Houston Friday morning to help his sister move a new couch into her apartment and help his dad move some furniture upstairs to prepare for the installation of concrete flooring. I stayed Friday morning in a failed attempt to get some school work done. Friday afternoon I made my way to Houston to attend the first night of the Lifeway's Abundance conference with my mom and aunt. After the night session ended, Rhett and I met up with my best friend, Danielle, and her husband, Scott, to grab a drink and catch up. While Rhett and Scott were discussing very manly topics such as handguns, I was wining  explaining to Danielle how ready I am to get the ball rolling with the next phase in Rhett and I's relationship.
The next morning, I went to the second session of the Abundance conference and it was amazing. Eye opening. Convicting. Hilarious. Inspiring. Powerful. 
Rhett asked if I wanted to hit up the zoo that afternoon and possibly grab dinner somewhere down there afterwards. We love the zoo, and go fairly often, especially in new cities, so I agreed that would be a fun afternoon and a chance to spend some time outside. The conference got done a little late and it was 4:15pm by the time I got home expecting Rhett to be chomping at the bit to get to the zoo. They only sell tickets until 6pm and we aren't exactly next door. I walk in and Rhett is on the couch watching golf with my dad. I nicely point out the time and he shrugs it off. He still needs to shower and get ready. If I was hoping at all that this night was the night, it was shot down about now. He got ready and we made it to the zoo around 5:30pm after hitting some traffic. It was a nice evening, so the zoo was packed. We wandered around for a while and I noticed Rhett was on his phone a lot. I inquired as to who he could possibly be talking to while we were at the zoo and he replied that he was involved in several simultaneous games of words with friends. 
"Hun, can you please be present with me here?? Let's enjoy the zoo. Phone games are for when you're bored!"
We finally make it to the new and improved African Forest section of the zoo--the part I had really been waiting to see.
Giraffes have always been my favorite animal, and Rhett gave me the nickname "baby giraffe" on field camp because he thought my ankles turned so much while hiking that they touched the ground. The giraffes are the very last thing in the African Forest, so we stopped there for a long time to watch them.
After about 10 minutes, he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him! 
I said yes, of course!
Can't believe how beautiful the ring is!
I turn around and Brennan, Rhett's sister, is there getting it all on film! So thankful she was there to capture such a special moment!
Also, turns out there was no couch moving on Friday. It was all a ploy. Rhett and Brennan went together to the zoo to scope it out beforehand. :)
The first thing I thought was "I need to call my mom!!"
Turns out, both our families were at a restaurant nearby waiting to celebrate!
What a special night :)
I am so excited to spend the rest of my life with my best friend.
Remember how I said we  hadn't stopped since that afternoon? Well, as of yesterday we have a venue, photographer, and, of course, A DATE!
October 13, 2012
It will be a rather short engagement, so be looking for wedding updates and inspiration soon!

Oh, and check out my bling!! :) He did an excellent job with our friends at David Gardner's.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

for the love of: donkeys

I've already shared how much I enjoy seeing and feeding donkeys. A few weekends ago, I went to Ft. Worth to visit Rhett on his day off and we stopped on the side of the road to love on this adorably furry mini donkey :)
Collage made using my new favorite iPhone app, diptic, and an old fave, instagram.


Yesterday, we went back to our local donkeys to feed them carrots. They are definitely not miniature. They may even be jumbo. Or mules? What's the difference?
They're so adorable.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

as of late

With spring break and St. Patrick's Day all rolled into one this year, I've spent a lot of time with my family (extended, too!) as of late, and it's been excellent. I took two days off for spring break (since I am trying to graduate and all). The first day, we went to see Miranda Lambert at the Houston Rodeo. My dad and brother were a little overwhelmed with the whole girl power bit, but I love her songs and she's really good live.
The next day we all piled in the car and drove to Moody Gardens in Galveston to see the Bodies Revealed Exhibit. The exhibit was really cool, but maybe not worth $15/person...
That weekend, we all met back up at a shared family place for a St. Patrick's Day crawfish boil!
The guys used a metal detector to search for buried treasure. The loot? A bottle cap, some tin foil and an old stake. Winning!
We shot a rocket that went so high, you couldn't see it for a second. It had a parachute, so we followed it to the ground and shot it off again. The second time, it was lost in the tall grass. A 14 member search party looked for 20+ minutes to no avail. Sigh. You were fun, little rocket, but you better watch out. The mower shows no mercy.
Then time for the crawfish boil!
Rhett is in town now and we are finally getting the title figured out for our airstream. Can't wait to get started on the renovation! 
The weather has been absolutely beautiful lately. It rained really hard this morning, but this afternoon is cool and breezy. Perfect weather to open the windows and let kittens get some fresh air.
I may have already shared how much I like Pioneer Woman's restaurant style salsa. I made it again this afternoon to take to a friends this evening for dinner and it is GOOD. So fresh and light. Oh, and it makes a ton!

How's that for some catching up?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

2 Cor 12:9

In the past 24 hours, two unbelievable and outraging global events have been called to my attention (and probably yours). The first is what Kony is doing in Uganda. This video by Invisible Children went viral and exposed an unimaginable fate for young boys and girls.
The second is Tiny Hands International which was our Shalom project for Breakaway. Tiny Hands International is fighting a war on sex-trafficking in Nepal. They monitor the border between Nepal and India to intercept young girls before they make it to India to be beaten and sold until they die. This video is from a girl who was rescued after her family was tricked into selling their own daughter into the sex trade.

I sat in my apartment this afternoon and felt broken. I am so spoiled. I feel useless. Sure, I can try and spread the it on my facebook, put it on my blog, but does that really do anything?? Even the people who are doing that are getting backlash for it.
"You're not an activist if all you do is post a video to facebook..."
Okay, that makes me feel like a fraud, but I do care. I feel a brokenness in my heart for these children, these countries. What can I do??
I prayed this before I started a lesson from Max Lucado's Experiencing the Heart of Jesus. Title for today's section? Everyone needs a miracle. New memory verse? You guessed it: 
2 Corinthians 12:9.
But He said "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weakness, so that Christ's power may rest on me. 
In the lesson, Max says:
"You have nothing to give. But you are hurting. And all you have to offer him is your hurt."
Romans 8:26
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.
Proverbs 15:29
The Lord is far from the wicked but He hears the prayer of the righteous.
James 5:15-16
And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.

I underestimate the power of prayer. I don't do it often enough. I'm not earnest. My prayers aren't for how others are hurting, mostly they are ways to make my life better. Easier. More fun. I have big plans, God, so I really need these few things to fall into place, k, thanks!
But today, all I have to do is offer up my hurt.
I see movies like Taken and think that's all it is...movies. Surely this isn't happening. Or maybe it's happening..on the other side of the world..where I don't have to see it, almost never have to hear about it. I can go about my day without a worry, or at least without a real worry.

So, everyone can do something to help these causes. Pray. Keep informed about what's going on in the world and here in the US and bring those issues to God! He is big enough! He hears the prayers of the broken and he is made perfect in our weakness. Pray and let God do big things. Also, listen. Listen to what God is leading you to do, where he is telling you to go, who he wants you to talk to. Personally, this is so hard.
I love the song "What do I know of Holy" by Addison Road. Especially this line:
I tried to hear from Heaven, but I talked the whole time.

Back to the topic of social activism for one last comment. I'm reading the book Blue Like Jazz right now and thought Donald Miller had an interesting point when talking about a friend he refers to as Andrew the Protester (you get the idea):
"I started feeling very much like a hypocrite. More than my questions about the efficacy of social action were my questions about my own motives. Do I want social justice for the oppressed, or do I just want to be known as a socially active person? I spend 95% of my time thinking about myself anyway. I don't have to watch the evening news to see that the world is bad, I only have to look at myself. I am not browbeating myself here; I am only saying that true change, true life-giving, God-honoring change would have to start with the individual. I was the very problem I had been protesting. I wanted to make a sign that read "I AM THE PROBLEM!"

I realize this post is heavy and may be misconstrued as negative or self-deprecating. It's not meant to be that! It's meant to give HOPE! We are all weak and Paul says to boast in that because our God is strong! He is mighty to save!

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