Tuesday, March 31, 2009


Tonight, I had the best barbeque I've ever had from this little joint. It was amazing. And that White Alabama sauce was AMAZING! I didn't get the ribs tonight, but next time, I think I'm going to have to! Seriously, if you're in the area, GO! Now!

Friday, March 27, 2009

A Vacuum, a Sock, and a Broomstick

Last night, I got home and was going to clean the house. I really needed to vacuum the bedrooms and was going to start in my bathroom and work my way out through my closet, bedroom, and then the guest bedroom. I had it all planned out. And in a matter of about ten minutes, I’d have it knocked out. I had gotten as far as the closet before I encountered any problems. I had the hose out and was going along the baseboards when I came across a sock. Then, I accidentally vacuumed it up. I have a bagless vacuum with a HEPA filter, so I checked the clear part that holds all the yucky stuff and didn’t see the sock. The hose wasn’t sucking like it had been and the sock wasn’t making its way to the holding container thingy. I had no clue what to do. So, I turned my vacuum off, and went to check the score of the Memphis game. About that time, my mother called. I decided to get her advice on removing a sock from a vacuum. If there’s any expert out there, I’m sure it’s a mom.

She asked if there was a way to take it apart and get the sock out. Sure, sounds easy enough. But I also know myself well enough to know that if I took it apart, I might as well have gone out and bought a new vacuum cleaner right then. But, with my mom’s plastered confidence in her smartest daughter, I thought I’d at least give it a try. “I can totally do this!” I was trying to psych myself up. I walked to the hall closet and grabbed my bag of tools (not that I know that to do with most of them) and pulled out a Phillips head screwdriver. I was successfully able to take three screws out of a small panel off the back. But when I tried to pull it off, it wouldn’t budge. I couldn’t figure out how to get it off. But the end of the hose came off, but it was still connected by the piece that wouldn’t come off.

At this point, I was still on the phone with my mom. I was trying to explain the process, but I don’t think I was very successful. I knew I needed something to stick down the hose to push the sock out, but I didn’t know what. That’s when my mom suggested using a broom handle.

Ohh…sounds perfect. So I hung up the phone and ran to the kitchen to grab my dust broom/mop. I went back to the closet and quickly shoved it down the hose. I kept shoving and the sock wasn’t coming out the other end. What in the world? Why did this have to be so difficult? I seemed like a simple enough trick. You just put something in there and force the sock out of hiding. But it wasn’t working. So I gave up again and went back to check the score of the game again (and of course update my status about a sock being stuck in my vacuum).

I decided I’d give it another try. This time, I was determined to make it work. I mean, I had a house to clean! Nothing. So I was going to take the broom out, but it wouldn’t budge. I was standing there, one foot on the vacuum hose, the other on the floor and I was pulling hard. It wouldn’t move. At that point, all I could do was laugh at myself. So I tried one more time and the next thing I know, I’m holding my broom in one hand and stumbling into my bathroom doorway. I pulled the broom out of the hose…well…half of it. I broke the broom handle off inside the hose. I scrunched up the hose accordion style so I could grab the rest of the broom handle, but it was about five inches short of reaching the end of the hose. I was at loss for words. So I abandoned the vacuum and went and picked up my phone.

“So, now I not only have a sock stuck in my vacuum cleaner hose, but I also have a broom handle stuck in there.”

My mom erupts with laughter. “What?”

“You heard me. I told you this would end badly!”

“Who else would this happen to? No one else but you!”

True story.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

A Love For All Things Ridiculous!

So, anyone who’s known me for more than a minute can probably quickly gather my love for things that are a little on the ridiculous side.

A couple weeks ago, I had gone into new employee orientation to do a quick training just like I do every few weeks. This time, we were not meeting in the training room, but rather, a smaller conference room, big enough to hold about eight, but there were only two new employees. One of my new employee friends launched into a tirade about how appalling the art in our building was. I’ve worked here for 3 ½ years and have been in that particular building for at least a year and a half and have never had an aversion to the artwork. But this woman was clearly disturbed by the prints in that room in particular, which to me resembled an aerial view of a mall with a big blue parking lot. I took it with a grain of salt and thought to myself that I was glad I wouldn’t have to deal with her on a regular basis.

So, a week goes by and her boss asked me to set up a meeting with her to catch her up to speed on my current project. This woman is probably in her late 40’s or early 50’s and clearly has no room in her life for anything silly or useless. I set up the meeting and didn’t give it much thought. She showed up to my office and pulled up a chair to talk. She acted somewhat pleasant, we discussed our agenda, and she left. She pretty much wore me out just from being within a five mile radius of me for an hour and a half. It wasn’t until she left that I realized what had happened…thinking back to our first meeting. I was quite filled with satisfaction as I looked around at my office. I’m sure she loved the artwork!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Trusting Jesus: More Trust Issues

Sometimes I think God must look down at me and say, "Amy, I've already shown you how to do that, why can't you remember?" Or "Um, we've already covered this one. I'm not showing you that again!" Or maybe even, "Good grief, child, you wear me out."

I feel like there are several things God's been trying to teach me lately. Over and over and over again. I also don't think it's merely coincidence that they are all somewhat related and intertwined. I feel like continues to show up in my life in very unexpected ways the last few weeks. Issues of trusting God. And not really just trusting, but actually allowing him to work through us. It's easy to trust God as a savior...to actually trust in the fact that through him, we are saved. That is the basic part of Christianity. But to actually trust Jesus as our teacher is completely different. If you want to hear an amazing message about it from Cross Point on Sunday, click here.

We even discussed this concept in small group last week before Pete based his sermon on it this past weekend. Revealing thought number 1: Sometimes I find it a lot easier to trust God with the big things, but I stuggle more with giving him control over the little things. I'm not sure why that is. But it's almost like he's proven to me that he can get me through the really hard, rough times...but I hold on to the little things. I don't know. I know it doesn't seem to make much sense at all. Wouldn't you think that it would be easier to trust him with the little things? All I know is that I have a long way to go before I think I can fully trust Jesus as not only my savior, but so much more. And I want to be there in that place. Imagine the peace that must reside there!

Pete had some amazing points on Sunday. Let me share a few...

Spiritual trouble arises when we have a skewed or innaccuate vision of who Jesus is.

Matt 5:21-24 - It's not just about transformation of the heart, but it's about behavior modification.

Matt 6:1 - It's possible to do all the "right" things, but still not be close to Christ. We often try too hard to make it all about us.

Matt 6:19-21 - Do we trust Jesus where our money and possessions are concerned?

Matt 11:28 - When we're treading water spritiually, why don't we just let Jesus help us out?

John 7:37 - If you are discontent or unsatisfied, he doesn't just quench our thirst, but he provides rivers of living water - so we can become a source of life to others.

Jesus gives us grace for eternity, but also, grace for life.

I'm still working through all of this, but I think it's always somewhat refreshing to know that others are right there with me...working it out themselves. I'd be much more of a freak if that weren't true. :)

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Any Competition is a Friend of Mine

I love a competition. Especially if it means if I win, I get bragging rights. I seriously think I could turn most things into a game and get some type of satisfaction out of it. Now...if I could only figure out a way to make going to the gym and getting in shape into some kind of game, I'd be golden.

A friend from work is about as much of a pop culture fanatic as I am. But now that I've given up eating lunch out for lent, it's hard to find enough time in the day to discuss and recap all tv/pop culture related events of the previous night. So we've settled for some water cooler fodder and emails to rehash the previous nights events.

Right now, the two biggest shows on our radar - Dancing With the Stars and American Idol.

Now, I'll be honest...sometimes I get really into Idol, and other seasons I completely forget it exists. I can't say that I'll commit to every week, but I will at least watch enough to keep up with it...especially since TiVo took the liberty of recording it without me even telling him.

So, I watched Tuesday night's performances and caught up to the rest of America. So, for week one of the actual competition (The crap before now is merely for entertainment purposes), here’s my synopsis.

Lil Rounds – I like her…she’s one of my favorites. I think she has a really good voice. Even if she doesn't make it very far in the competition, I think she'll have an album out.

Scott – Not a big fan. The high notes in the song were AWFUL!

Danny – Love Love Love him! I think he’s got great stage presence and he can SING! I’ve loved him since his audition. LOVE that he sang PYT!

Michael – He gets points in my book for singing the Free Willy song. Haha! I think he’s okay…but there’s not much that’s great about him.

Jasmine – She’s good, and I like her, but don’t think she’s anything special.

Kris –He can play guitar…so he’s going that going. He’s cute…so he’s got that going. I agree with Simon about the guitar not suiting the song. He’s good, but not sure about being great. He’s got potential though. I like him!

Allison – I like her. She sounds like Kelly Clarkson to me. She said she’s not cutting herself. I am glad.

Anoop – I think he’s likable, but not anything special. I love that he sang Beat It. But it was very awkward. I agree about it sounding karaoke because it’s an iconic karaoke song! But the glam squad did wonders on him! Did you notice he said “Ya’ll?” haha…he did.

Jorge – He’s good, but I don’t care one way or the other about him.

Megan – Um…her dancing is annoying. Rockin’ Robin…really?!? REALLY?!?! That just got on my nerves. Whether she can sing or not, that was a dumb song choice. And she CAWED at the end. REALLY?!? She’s got a decent voice, but dang…I need her to go home already.

Adam – Love Love Love him. He’s definitely going to be up there in the finals. And B&W is one of my favorite MJ songs! I think he’s great.

Matt – He’s definitely got the Justin Timberlake look working for him! I love that he played the piano and I think he’s got a great voice!

Alexis Grace – I think she’s good. The end was a little crazy. I think she can sing, but it was a little over the top. I agree with the judges.

PS. Paula is crazy.

So, at the office, we are picking the order in which they'll go. So here are my picks (In order - best to worst). We'll see how I do.

Danny Gokey
Adam Lambert
Lil Rounds
Allison Irahata
Matt Guirad
Kris Allen
Alexis Grace
Jorge Nunez

Jasmine Murray
Michael Sarver
Anoop Desai
Megan Corkery
Scott McIntyre

Do you watch? I want to hear your picks...or at least your top four. Next...my DWTS picks for this season. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Through the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Over the last two days, I've have been ridiculously thankful to have the support of amazing friends. I'm not talking about just having people to hang out with. I'm talking about actually having people in my life who care about me and have a vested interest in my life. People who have been with me through the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Yesterday, I got some devestating news that a dear friend's father was in a fatal freak accident.
She is pregnant with her first child, and she is days away from her due date. I know what it is like to lose a father, but I have no idea the mix of emotions that go along with something so sudden and unexpected. You can never prepare yourself for those things. Ever. When I got the news, my stomach literally sank. I started immediately praying for peace for her and her family. I can't imagine the hurt and pain she must be feeling during a time in her life that should be filled with such joy.

Through this though, it has made me stop and look at the friends in my own life who have been there for me. One thing I will always remember about losing my own father are the people in my life who helped get me through that time. Friends who called to tell me that they loved me. Friends who sent flowers, plants, and cards. Friends who I hadn't seen or spoken to in months, even years, who showed up unexpectedly at the funeral home. Those people loved me. Through the good. Through the bad. They were there for me, whether they knew how to be or not. It was through their love and support that I was able to get through it. To know that they were there, willing to just sit with me...without talking. Willing to let me talk through things when I was ready. To cry with me. Or just wait. Because while they might not have had the right words to say (because there are none), they were there at a time when I needed them the most. And that's what makes the difference. Just having support. People around you who care. People who love you. Regarless of any circumstances.

Today, as I was arranging to have something sent to the funeral home, I literally had to stop what I was doing and praise God for blessing me with amazing friends. Friends I so often take for granted.

I pray that right now, my friend is reminded that the Lord provides peace with time. I also pray that she is surrounded by people who love her (near and far) who can provide her with the support she needs at this exact moment. I can't fathom dealing with the death of a father and the birth of a first born baby all within days of each other. But I do know one thing for certain, and that is that at the end of the day, the Lord is sovereign.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Apparently I have no self control!

I gave up eating lunch out for Lent. I thought it would save me some money, be healthier, and all that good stuff. But mostly because I was doing it more and more for social reasons. I would bring my lunch and someone would ask if I wanted to go out for lunch and I’d go. I mean, I'll never pass on having someone to talk about Dancing With The Stars, or How I Met Your Mother. I used to never eat of for lunch. It just got to be a little ridiculous. Add to that, all of my pants are fitting a lot snugger than I’d like them to be. So I gave up eating lunch out during the work-week. I've been bringing my lunch, but I find myself needing to get out of the office. So I have been leaving the office for 30-45 mins everyday. Running errands, shopping, etc. Well, this also seems to be trouble. Today, I went to Target and came out with the following items:

U2's new cd - No Line on the Horizon
A roll of black electrical tape
Goldfish crackers
a pack of gum
coffee creamer
a squirt toy

WHAAAAT? Out of all of those things, I'll admit, I only needed coffee creamer. The rest merely caught my interest while walking through the store...bored. Bad idea.

So I decided today that maybe next week, I need to try bringing gym clothes and actually using my Y membership during my lunch break. I guess we'll see how that goes...

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

I'm a Liar!

I was attending a conference last week and we had to go around the room and introduce ourselves. During our introduction, we were supposed to tell everyone our name, what company we were with, and something interesting about ourselves. Now, I like to think that I’m a fairly interesting person. I have all kinds of “interesting things” I could have said. But when it was my turn to take the spotlight, I completely froze. So, I did what any normal person would do….I lied.

The words that came out of my mouth were:
"I love to travel and I’ve been to 47 out of 50 states."

As I'm saying it, I'm thinking what in the world am I saying? What a ridiculous thing to make up.

So then, of course, the 60 year old man beside me is impressed.
“Which states haven’t you been to?”

My quick response “Alaska, Hawaii, and Maine. Um…okay.

There are a million things I could have said that would have been way more interesting…things like:

“I have a pet rabbit.” (I even could have elaborated and said that I thought he was a girl for the first 4 months I owned him)

“I took a spur of the moment trip to New York City on the 4th of July just to watch the fireworks with friends.”

“I stayed up too late last night watching ‘The Man Without A Face’ on TLC about a man who let tumors invade his face to the point of not really being able to live his life”

“I’ve been swimming with dolphins in the Bahamas.”

I’ve been to 39 out of 50 states.
New Hampshire
Rhode Island

I think the next time I have to tell an interesting fact, I should say, “The last time I had to tell an interesting fact about myself, I made one up.”

Can I get more pathetic? I think through all of this, I've definitely learned that I’m not really that interesting.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

America's Biggest Jerkface

Okay, I’ll come right out and say it. I’m PISSED at The Bachelor. Not that I ever thought it was true “reality tv,” but I will admit I always found myself coming back season after season. There’s something about the fact that maybe, two people will find love. Now I also know that I’m way more cynical and jaded than that. But there’s hope out there somewhere in the depths of my soul that if Trista and Ryan did it, so can the next guy or girl. I’ll go ahead and say that I’ve never believed that it’s completely real…and that sometimes, for the sake of the show, they just have to pick someone…even if they know it’s not going to work out in the end (Take Travis for instance).

But last night was just a little too much for me to stomach. I literally was emotionally exhausted. I felt like I had been dumped.

For those who don’t watch, I’ll give you the quick recap.

Jason, went from being America’s favorite bachelor to America’s biggest jerkface in a matter of minutes. During the finale, he acted like he was torn between the final two, Melissa, and Molly. He lets Molly go, walks to the balcony and starts balling like a baby. Then, returns, proposes to Melissa. Happily ever after. Until. After the Final Rose.

After the Final Rose comes on and it’s awkward. Chris is telling us that due to respect for the parties involved, it will be an intimate setting. Um…awkward. So there’s no audience, no music, just dead silence. Jason comes out and tells Chris (and the 11 million viewers) that things haven’t been the same since New Zealand and the proposal and that he’s having doubts and second thoughts. So he is going to end it with Melissa (in front of 11 million viewers) and he wants to pursue things with Molly (if she’ll take him back).

So they bring out poor Melissa. He tells her that he’s known for a while that he made a mistake by picking her and that he’s still in love with Molly. Apparently, Melissa knew something was going on, but I don’t know if she knew what was coming or not. She seemed shocked and upset. And I think she had every right to be. There were a couple things that truly broke my heart. When Melissa said that Jason had taken one thing from her she could never get back…a proposal. Then, when she was in the limo and said that it hurt her that he didn’t find her or their relationship worth fighting for. Ouch. Then, she said that she is always the dumpee and she doesn’t understand why…that there must be something wrong with her. UGH! Melissa, it is not you! For some reason, it infuriated me. Why women get it into our heads that it’s always a problem with us. Of course, we’re not perfect, but I’d just like her to stop and look at what a jerk he is. It has nothing to do with anything she did or didn’t do.

Now, this morning, I was even more disgusted to read what Reality Steve had to say on his blog. It was absolutely appalling! Check it out for yourself. He claims to have contact with individuals close to sources that revealed that Jason told the producers that his pick was Molly when there were five girls left. The producers asked who his second pick was. Melissa was the obvious choice. So the producers devised a plan for him to take Molly and Melissa to the final rose ceremony…for him to pick and propose to Melissa. Then, break up with Melissa during the After the Final Rose and ask Molly to take him back.

(Hold on…I need to throw up.)

So it was planned the whole time. Now I’m sure this isn’t the first time something has been planned in Bachelor history…but dang. To drag someone around for six weeks making them think that you are in love with her, proposing to her, making her think that you (and your son) are going to be her new family. Then pulling the rug out from under her. That is taking it to a new level. That’s just dirty. It makes me sick to my stomach that he would mess with someone’s emotions for an extended period of time knowing the whole time what he was going to do in the end. He’s an even bigger jerk than I thought. For some reason, I was an emotional wreck after last night’s finale. I seriously felt like I had been dumped. I think if I’d been Melissa, I’d have punched him in the face. He definitely deserved it.

And I don’t even know what to think about Molly. If the rumors are true and she was in on it the whole time, then she’s a jerk too. Because there’s no way I could let the man I’m in love with treat another girl so horribly and be so deceiving.

ABC, thanks for the good times, but I think I officially have to be done with The Bachelor. I can’t handle another heartbreak.