Saturday, September 11, 2010

This Is It

So, after ten years at Compassion, this is it.

I always wondered what it would take for me to leave. See, in the beginning I hadn't planned on staying for more than two years. I thought I'd get my feet wet in the working world, get a couple years of work experience under my belt, and then move on to wherever it was that I would find my career. Compassion was just a stepping stone. Or so I thought ...

But God has this crazy way of directing our footsteps so that while the view forward is confusing and quite literally a blind walk of faith, the view looking backward makes perfect sense. As if everything has been planned out ahead of time.

It's true in my life. See if you can follow this. Following a seemingly random (but completely God-directed) series of events, I started off working as an assistant on Compassion's marketing team. After four years in the marketing department, I moved to the communications team and worked in PR and corporate communications. From there, I moved onto the advocacy team, doing a lot of creative and online communications. Then Compassion reorganized and I found myself working on the web team. (Along with a hot single guy named Chris.) At the exact time Chris and I started to contemplate a relationship (which was impossible as he was about to become my supervisor) I was recruited for a job on the field communications team. Seeing as I really wanted to date Chris, I promptly took the job. I did that for a couple years and again last fall Compassion reorganized and I was moved onto the CIV team where I reside today.

All that to say it's been one wild ride. God kept me here for more than three times as long as I originally thought and, good thing because I ended up meeting my husband. Coincidence? The position I took that allowed me to actually date him was the perfect combination of all my past positions and a great fit for me. All along I thought those job moves were random when in reality, they were moving me towards my husband and dream job.

Ten years. That means I've worked there for almost one third of my life! It's been a joy, Compassion. You've been so good to me. I will miss you.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Preggo Pictures

Well seeing as I [hopefully!] will not be pregnant for much longer, I figured I'd better hurry up and post a few of our preggo pictures. My cousin-in-law Preston took them for us and did a fabulous job! Here are a few of my favorites ...






If you're interested, you can see the rest. Thanks, Preston!

Friday, August 27, 2010

The Comfort Zone

I'm 37 weeks pregnant today. So technically that means I'm full term. The baby could come any day and be fine. It could be today.

The thought of being mom in a few weeks (or days!) is both incredibly exciting and totally intimidating. See, I'm by nature a comfort zone person. I like the idea of change more than I like change itself. I mean, look at my life. I've worked at the same place for 10 years. I live in the city I was born and raised in. Heck, I even married someone whose name is the same as both my mom and my dad's. And my brother's. And mine. Obviously, I like my comfort zone where it's safe and secure. And nothing is unknown.

But I've discovered something disturbing about the comfort zone. There is a distinct lack of faith there. In a place where I am totally safe and secure and everything is known, I have no need for God. I am not stretched. I have no reason to grow or change. It's comfortable, yes, but stagnant. And honestly, a little boring. Living in the comfort zone does not allow me to have the abundant life that Jesus talks about.

That's why, although I have literally no idea what I'm doing when it comes to things like labor, childbirth and raising a child, I'm looking forward to the approaching challenges with great excitement! And although I've had some pretty big moments of failure in this recently, I'm trying to keep the fear at bay. Because there's no way, even if it were possible at this point, that I want to stay in the comfortable, safe place I've been. I need this if I'm going to grow.

God is calling me to bigger things. He's calling me out of my safe place to a place of unknown.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Celebrating Year One

Last weekend we celebrated our one year anniversary with a weekend away on the Western Slope, near Gunnison, CO. Okay first of all, how have I lived in this state my whole life and never spent any time on the other side of the mountains?! It's unbelievably gorgeous. It's a totally different kind of beauty than the side we live on.

We stayed in a cabin at a horse ranch near a tiny town called Almont. The area is known for it's fly fishing and river rafting.

One of the highlights for us was that we were able to bring all three dogs. The dogs had a great time playing in the river all day and we just relaxed, read books, played Scrabble and had a couple nice dinners out in Gunnison.

On the way, we stopped at the top of Cottonwood Pass.

We met a German couple who studied butterflies. Chris liked their nets.
Once we arrived, we found a spot along the river without fishermen (this is harder than it sounds in that area) and let the dogs play.
Havana LOVES the water and will fetch anything. Anywhere. Anytime.
Orsa had to build up her courage in the fast-moving current, but loved fetching the ball.
Bella just bathes. And never, ever gets her tail wet.
Saturday morning we went for an early morning hike. It was gorgeous.



The view from our cabin.
We stopped at Taylor Reservoir on the way home.
I set the self-timer, but the autofocus was apparently in the wrong spot. Lame. I like this picture anyway, even if it's blurry. (I really should learn how to use my camera better.)
Looks like a fake backdrop. But, of course, it's not.
Good job, God!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Motherhood by Immersion

In the final few weeks before BabyGio arrives, I've been surrounding myself with as many babies as possible. I figure it's kind of like learning a language by immersion.

So last week my sister brought her kiddos for a picnic lunch at the park across the street. Moriah, my six-month-old niece, got to experience the bliss of eating a strawberry for the first time. (After witnessing the carnage, it's obvious that Carl's Jr.'s "Don't bother me ... I'm eating" commercials have nothing on this girl!)
video
Apparently pregnancy has changed my voice into a man's voice. How unbecoming. I hope it changes back.

And here, her brother Micah discovers that bomannas have hair.
video

Then today at lunch, I had another niece visit, this time two months old.
Needless to say, I'm getting a teensy bit excited for our baby to be here and join the fun!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Bold is Beautiful

It's been almost two months since we moved into our new house, and with all the traveling and other summer activities, we've been slow in making it "ours." But this past weekend, we made huge progress ... we finally got our main level painted!

And I'd like to take a moment to give a major shout out to Devin Smith, his lovely wife Becca and his dad, who did a phenomenal painting job. They worked so hard and it definitely shows! Even my perfectionist brother would appreciate the perfect edging and ceiling lines. You guys are awesome!

Now, a little background for you before the photos. Keep in mind that Chris and I approach decision-making very differently, so something as seemingly innocuous as choosing paint colors is a major deal. We spent hours at Home Depot and probably grabbed half of the paint swatches to take home. We tried several colors in different spots on the wall, which you can see in some of the photos.

Even after we had decided on colors, I think we were both unsure about how it would look. And since I was banished from the house for the weekend, I couldn't evaluate the colors partway through, so I was even more anxious.

Obviously, when I arrived home on Monday night, I was quite excited to see the outcome. I took some before and after pictures so you can see the transformation...

Front Room




Kitchen


Living Room




Dining Room/Kitchen


So, hopefully you can see why we LOVE it! It's warm and comfortable and has a little Mediterranean/Tuscan feel. We're both into bold paint colors (obviously) and this house, with its many windows, is perfect for it.

Next up on the home improvement agenda ... the nursery.

Oh by the way, in case you're interested, we have four unopened gallons of the red paint, two semi-gloss and two eggshell. It's Behr Premium (with primer included) and the color is Chianti. I'm going to sell it on Craigslist, so let me know if you want to buy it!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Old People Rock

This couple has been married for 62 years and he'll be 90 this year. They walked into the lobby of the Mayo Clinic for a checkup and spotted a piano. Here is their impromptu performance.



I'm shooting for that much fun after 62 years with my husband!

ht: Suzanne Gosselin

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Blog, Interrupted

Geez ... where have I been all my life? Apparently this whole marriagehousebuyingpregnancy-all-in-one-year thing has really taken it's toll on my regular blogging habit.

With how quickly life is changing these days and the upcoming arrival of BabyGio, I've been literally overflowing with stuff to share. (Yes, literally Zach.)

So, without further ado ... I am hereby reinstating this blog.

Ahem.
I, owner and sole contributor of this blog, hereby promise to give you a better peep into the G-Life via more regular posts. Maybe not every single day. But certainly more than you've seen of late.

I hereby promise that starting in September, not every post will contain a baby photo. Or even mention a baby. But probably some will since that will be my life.

I hereby promise to try my best to make you think a little bit and laugh a lot.
I apologize to you, faithful reader. You deserve better. And if you're still around, you deserve ... ummm .... something cool. A gold medal. A free ice cream cone. Or at least a hug. (Although even that's becoming a challenge these days.)

Anyway, in the spirit of the Asian guy on Iron Chef America ... LET THE BLOGGING BEGIN!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

C.S. Lewis on Love

"Do not waste time bothering whether you "love" your neighbour; act as if you did. As soon as we do this we find one of the great secrets. When you are behaving as if you loved someone, you will presently come to love him."

—C.S. Lewis (Mere Christianity)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Stan Walker

Working at Compassion has it's perks. Yesterday was definitely one of those. Stan Walker, winner of Australian Idol, came to visit the headquarters and did a special chapel service.

Now, to be honest, when I heard that an Idol winner was coming here, my immediate thought was Oh great. Another wannabe pop star who's using God as a platform to fame. I had prepared myself to be unimpressed.

Um, okay. I don't think I could have been any more wrong. YouTube him. Seriously.

I can honestly say Stan Walker is a true lover of Jesus Christ. He has perhaps the most powerful story of redemption I've ever heard. He shared how God saved him from a life of abuse, crime, drugs, alcohol, women ... and much more. But the thing that is so moving is that when he talks, it's obvious that it's more than just words. He really means it. He clearly believes God has called him to be a wooer of people to the love of Christ. He sees God's allowing him to win the singing competition simply as a platform to praise the name of Jesus. It's unbelievable to hear his authentic love for Christ, knowing his whole story.

And on top of that, you should hear the guy sing. He sang this one for us...



All I can say is I look forward to singing praises to Jesus in eternity alongside this guy.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

14 Days and Counting ...

It's not that I mean to go so long between posts, it's just that lately life is getting in the way. This past Saturday we moved our whole life into a POD and since then, we've been staying with some good friends up in Monument. (More on them in a later post.) Of course, since both Chris and I continue to work full time, we are having to spend our evenings over at our house moving out what's left and cleaning the place. We haven't been getting home before 10pm for the past 3 days. In the midst of this, I somehow caught a cold. I'm not sure how much more of this insane pace of life I can take. Thankfully, we close in two days.

Anyway, all that to say, I've been intending to post these pictures since I took them. When we were over at our new house for the inspection a couple weeks ago, I took some photos. All I had was my iPhone so I apologize for the fuzziness, but I think you'll get the idea.

So, here's our home sweet home...

This is the front room, taken from the top of the stairs. It has vaulted ceilings and big windows so it gets lots of light. We have something VERY cool in mind for painting this room.

Here's the kitchen. It's at least twice as big as our current kitchen with loads more cabinet space. This might be the part of the house I'm most looking forward to. Oh and those beautiful appliances come with it. However, that light fixture in the foreground (which is actually in the dining area) will be one of the first things to be replaced.

Here's the basement. You're looking at the big living area, but there are also two bedrooms and a nice sized bathroom down there too. This is where Chris' office and the guest room will be.

This is the back deck. It's west facing, so it gets sun all afternoon. I'm already planning our summer bar-b-ques.

Here's the view from the back deck. In the winter, we can see Pikes Peak, but when those trees are full, I'm guessing our mountain view will be obstructed. (Although I think from the master bedroom we'll still be able to see it.)

There's much more to show you, but you really should come get the personal tour. I'm most excited because we'll finally have room to host people, one of my favorite things! We'll have lots of space for out of town guests too. So you really have no excuse.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Book Review: Hand of Fate

I recently signed up to occasionally review books for Thomas Nelson Publishers. (They give me the books for free.) So from time to time, you'll see my reviews posted here. I just finished Hand of Fate by Lis Wiehl. So without further ado, here it is.



I went into Hand of Fate with rather low expectations so it was a pleasant surprise to find that I actually enjoyed it. It certainly wasn't the best book I've read, but I was entertained by the story.

Hand of Fate continues the story of the friendship between three women, Nicole, Allison and Cassidy. (Coincidentally, all three women are 33 years old.) Together, they call themselves the "Triple Threat Club." After local talk show host Jim Fate is murdered in his studio, the three women must work together to solve the crime. At the same time, each woman is dealing with her own personal life-altering issue.

The writing in Hand of Fate is elementary. I would classify this book as beach reading - nothing too thought-provoking or intellectual. The plot was engaging although at times, quite predictable. The ending seemed entirely too abrupt. It's like watching those crime shows on TV. 98% of the book is spent building the story, and then unbelievably it is miraculously resolved in the last three pages.

If you are looking for a mildly entertaining suspense story you can read without putting in a lot of thought, this is your book. I wouldn't say I gained much from it, but I also didn't feel it was a total waste of my time.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Snowdogs

We got LOTS of snow last night. Because the wind was blowing so hard, the drifts were deep.

So today we took the dogs out to play.

In places, the snow was over a foot deep.
Orsa and Havana race each other to get the ball.
When they lose the ball, Havana just digs for it.

Bella's too good for fetch. She just stands there and looks pretty.

When she's on her game, Havana will even catch snowballs.