i'm trying not to be discouraged.
i told people, even before i went in for the procedure (endoscopy), that i didn't want to put all my hope in that finding an answer. it wasn't a sure thing. and my hope should be elsewhere anyway.
but it's still disappointing, you know?

my nurse was wonderful. i barely felt it when she put in the IV. and the sedation was pretty cool - at least at first. it kind of felt like if you drank a really big glass of wine really fast. i got hot all over and my head started swimming. then i woke up a few hours later! that stuff works FAST! then the hangover - i had to make my mom pull over on the way home so i could use the curbside.. use your imagination for the details. :) i was so sick to my stomach and had such a headache.. i promptly fell asleep for a while longer after getting home!

for now, i still don't have any answers. they saw no sign of a problem. so they're going to run more tests (i vaguely remember something about an ultrasound of my gallbladder - strange).

no answers. just trusting in the One who formed me, who knows what's wrong and has a plan.
and trying not to be discouraged in the meantime!



it could top the list of birthday gifts. or at least come close.

she got me the keychain!
the one from Caribou, in the shape of a moose.

it definitely took a lot of thoughtfulness. and in the giver's own words, much "pain and suffering" (she works at Sbux and is quite faithful to it).

thank you, Stephie. you made me smile. a lot. :)


birthday pics!

the girls!
(minus Lindsay)

me & my man
(isn't he cute?)
me & Matt's sister
(i don't like "sister-in-law". she doesn't fit the stereotype!)


happy birthday to me...

pictures to come. :)

can i just say - i ate WAY too much this weekend!!
i think i'm still full.

and so much sugar.... gelato... cake... ice cream... Thai sweet rice.... sticky rolls....
for those of you who know me well, you're probably cringing hard right now!
the headache right now is making me well-aware of my indiscretion.

though, if i had to do it all over again, i wouldn't change a thing.

it's my birthday! i can have sugar if i want it. :)
as long as i'm willing to deal with the headache for a few days afterwards.. which at this point, i am more than willing.



He is a God of promise. of redemption. of grace.
i've been reading through Genesis lately, and as every other time, it feels like the first time in so many ways.
i read about Hagar and Ishmael this morning.
it struck me: there was no obligation on any side for a blessing to be given to Ishmael. in fact, Ishmael was a result of Abram's doubt in God's promise (or more realistically, Sarai's doubt). he got impatient and took things into his own hands. and a boy was born. and then cast out. it would have been just, and fair (whatever those two words actually mean), for Ishmael to be forgotten. he wasn't the son of Abram's wife, but the son of a maidservant.
but He is the "God who sees me.. the God who hears me". this is who He was to Hagar.
not only did He spare their lives in the desert; He promised great things. to make Ishmael into a great nation. to give him descendants without number.

a similar promise to what was given to Isaac through Abraham.

aren't you glad that He thinks differently than we do?

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the LORD. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts." -Isaiah 55:8,9

redemption. promise. hope.
the God i serve i will serve faithfully. for life. with everything i have. because He is worthy.


some days...

are there some days you wish you could just go back to bed, get up, and start all over?
to quote a good friend, "this life is hard on the heart".
i'm so glad i have something, or rather Someone, to fall back on.
He is my strenth. my portion. my sustenance.
and He never lets me down.
my rock in times of trouble. "i sing in the shadow of Your wings... "

i'm really sad today. the last day or so has been kind of rough. nothing huge - just little things that make my heart hurt.
but He is bigger. and He's making me more like Him in everything that happens.

all that being said, if you read this today, i could use your prayers.
that i would keep my eyes on Him. that i would always choose the way of love over anything else (ie: selfishness, pride, bitterness).


sad day

talk about depressing... check out what i just received via email...


i love to read.
i would rather be caught reading a good book than watching TV or just about anything else.
the problem is, every book has an ending.
that means you have to say "goodbye".

you may think of me as crazy, but i get attached. to the characters, to the town, to the story in general. it becomes as real to me as the person sitting next to me.
but then.. you read that last page, that last sentence, and the story's over. it's done. the characters, for all intensive purposes, have died. i won't hear anything about them again; i'll never talk to them again.

i guess that's why i enjoy reading so much. because it's so real to me.
it's rare that i can start a new book right away - i need a "moment of silence".
this time, it's for Steve Benson, and for Tracy. (from The Oath by Frank Peretti)

all will be well tomorrow.
maybe i'll read Tolkein again... it's been a while.


waahhhh!!!! (pathetic crying sound)

(disclaimer: this is not a serious issue. nobody died. and nobody's sick. i'm just being melodramatic)

i received a very sad call last night at 10:16. i was sitting in the living room, enjoying a very good book (i'll talk more about that another day), attempting to get my reading done for my "o'dark-thirty" Bible study this morning.
the phone rang. it was Ranae. i think, "she never calls this late - something must be wrong!"

ignorance really is bliss. i never should've answered the phone.
though the ugly truth would've met me soon - when i went to visit one of my favorite places (see a few posts previous).
gone! all the Caribou Coffee shops, with no warning, gone!
their last day was sunday. the people who worked there found out sunday. everyone else found out monday morning. except for me - i found out at 10:16 last night.
the saddest thing of all - okay, not saddest. just the initial thing. there was this keychain - a caribiner in the shape of a moose head - that i've wanted for months. probably longer. i just never brought myself to spend the $2.99. the first thing out of Matt's mouth when i told him the news: "no!! i was going to get you that keychain for your birthday!!"

*sadder sigh*

really, in the grand scheme of things, i realize how insignificant all this is.
but for now, i will be sad. and grieve the loss of a favorite place.



it's funny, sometimes when He asks you to do something that you really don't want to do, and you do it - trusting that He knows better than you - things end up so much better than you had ever hoped or planned.
nothing specific, really. just a realization that i've been having lately.

there's a concept that i've always known and understood in my head and heart, but when it comes to applying it to actual experience, things get a little stickier.
here it is. are you ready?

when you give up control of something to Him, He gives parts of it back to you and instructs you on what to do with it. as you act in obedience to that, you end up being in more control of the situation than you ever would have been if you had retained control in the first place.

He's been teaching me lately how to apply this concept to my daily life.
the results have been exciting, even in the small things.
my hope is, as i learn to be faithful in those small things, He'll give me bigger tasks. and by His grace, i will not let Him down!