Saturday, April 19, 2014

10 Things I Love about Summer!

I am a future-oriented person. It really can be a weakness, because I tend to look forward to or dread things in the future rather than staying focused on the present. However, it is appropriate (and fun!) at times to think about big picture plans and events. And one of the "events" that is coming up is the change of seasons. 
Summer is coming (Don't shoot me for saying that as soon as spring finally arrives... it's what I do)!
With it are many things I am looking forward to:

1.) Summer camps--We're still discussing which ones I'm going to (Worldview Camp, King Solomon Camp, CYIA, and Camp Good News are all in the mix) but each camp offers fun fellowship with friends as well as a potentially deeper relationship with God. 

2) Lemon Ice Cream--enough said!
3) Reduced School Load--Math will probably continue through the summer, but I am especially excited about physics and piano being done. 

GUYS!!!  Our cat just gave birth to three adorable kittens (And they're alive, which really surprised us!) right as I was posting!! I'm sure Natalie will post pictures within a couple hours, so I won't bother. :) Nothing to do with summer, but pretty exciting! 

Back to the post...

4.) Smoothies--okay, I'll confess these are kind of a year-round thing here, but still... I'm pumped!

5.) Non-stop Athletic-Shorts--These may or may not be a year-round thing at my house, too...guys, these Nikes are my absolute favorite right now! Now, can these please go on sale or something? 

6.) (I'm losing my train of thought as I stair at that beautiful pair of Nike shorts... really for the sake of a coherent post, I should delete that picture...the beauty of those Nikes is alluring/distracting.) 
Let me scroll down a ways to eliminate this distraction

Ahhh, much better. I can finally concentrate!

7.) Summer Volleyball Practices--Honestly, the practices are even more fun to me than the games! I love when you finally know who is on what team and your role on the team. Then, the team can gel!

8.) The Smell of Sunscreen--Mmm. They should make a candle that is sunscreen-scented! That and doughnut-scented. Mmmm! I would buy ten!

9.) Tans-- I'm sorry, but I really do like them. (No, that is not at all ironic to put under my love of sunscreen.) 

10.) Weekly Grilled Chicken--Mom doesn't grill much in the winter (something about standing outside in the snow and trying to cook raw meat...) but in the summer she makes it on a regular basis. It just makes me happy!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Comment Post

You know what has been driving me crazy??? Our silly computer won't let me comment on any google/blogger blog! I mean, really? I have to read all these wonderful posts without being able to tell people that I really enjoy them by commenting on them!
You know what else is going to drive me crazy (and will probably be really, really good for me?) No internet for two weeks, starting this afternoon. None, nada, zip. Hence, the reason I am posting on Wednesday right after class rather than Monday 10 minutes before the deadline. Even though no internet will probably be a good thing in some respects, it means I have to get any written assignments printed out TODAY, since our printer doesn't work without the internet. I may be cramming in a cover letter this morning, folks!

Back my original topic: I want to comment on people's posts, but the kid computer is rendered useless when it comes to commenting (unless you have a wordpress blog) Therefore, I will attempt to comment HERE, instead of on the actual blogs, about how awesome your posts are. (See, I did them alphabetically because I love you all!)

 Anna: Your posts!!! You already know that your "people posts" are my favorite. You do an excellent job describing people, and making them "three dimensional" in writing! You pin-point exactly what makes each person special and always amaze me by how well you capture them. Not to mention your random every day posts, which have made me laugh, (think your fun lists) mourn, (think the end-of-the-volleyball-season-post) and everything-fun posts (which make up the remainder of the posts I didn't specifically mention).

Avery: I am enjoying your posts more and more! I admire your willingness to share from what's on your heart... that is scary, especially on something more public like a blog post! I loved your "Lies of the World" post because it truly challenged me. Realizing that many of the lies I believe are grounded in the even deeper lie that "I need attention!" was an eye-opener for me!

Bethany: Your most recent "Bucket List" post is so fun! Touring a castle and starring on the Amazing Race? Can I come with? Sounds waayyy more exciting and creative than my list. Your posts are ones that always seem to make my day happier. I have been amazed by the wide range of topics you cover in your posts. None of them feel the least bit repetitive... well, other than the fact that I always enjoy them!

Chloe: You are one of the most creative bloggers I know! I love your random but always-enjoyable posts! Your posts are so engaging. My favorite "type" of post are your, "Curious, isn't it?" posts because they're jam-packed with randomness and entertainment. You cover a wide range of topics with diplomacy and

Jerica: Your blog doesn't show up in my feed, so sometimes (gulp) I forget to read it. Shame on me! I'm missing out! I went back to your blog just today and was amazed by how it keeps looking more and more professional! Some of my favorite posts were the photo-shoots or Kendra and the rest of your family. Also, you're SAD about biology ending? Wow, that is great! What is your secret to such a great attitude? Because honestly, even my favorite subjects are ones I'm ready to be done with the end of school.

Laurel! I am still getting over the (very exciting) fact that you have a blog! I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your posts and hearing about your life from basketball to lists to random updates. I love how your "voice" comes through in your writing. I'm also especially excited that now your posts can include volleyball if you'd like, because you came to practice and we're practicing TOGETHER! The thrill is too much for me! :)

Mary Frances: I know you have a Wordpress blog (which means I can actually comment on my computer) but I decided I could still "comment" publicly here, too. :)
Your blog is for one thing, beautiful. The format is really cute, and the writer of the blog? Even more so. :) I love your beautiful pictures of food and your ever-engaging writing style that ranges from deep to hilarious.

Mrs. Mann: I love how you are posting more frequently! I was so happy to find you posted twice quite recently! I especially loved your inspiring list, and the JOY with which you view life. You seem to find the bright side in some of the most annoying circumstances! I know you have a baby, teach two classes, and are basically a very busy person, but when you get time, don't stop posting. :) Your posts are some of my favorite!

Natalie: You don't read my blog anyways, so I'll just tell you in person what I love about your blog. :)

Savanna:  Last in the alphabet but certainly NOT least, Savanna. :)Your personalities post was SO fun! You explained them all so well, and it made me rather in awe of how much time probably goes in to planning your characters. I still remember doing OYAN with the writing class and being amazed and overwhelmed by your detailed-ness. :) Also, your blog and general is a fun read because I get to hear your opinions, hopes, and thoughts--quite a privilege from someone as wise as you. :)

Monday, April 7, 2014

{Bucket List} Part 2

Mmm, bucket lists make me so happy! Here are a few additions I'd like to make to my previous post. :)

More to do on my bucket list...
Poach an egg the REAL way. You know, dropping it into boiling water rather than into the little poached egg tins my mother has. Those are not the same thing!

Camp out on the trampoline. I've tried at least twice, and after several hours of everything but sleeping, I always come inside... obviously I value sleeping more than coolness! And then consequently feel like a wimp.

Successfully hit (or spike, depending on your terminology) from the backrow during a volleyball game. Not a standing spike, the real deal. I don't think I've ever successfully done a true approach in a game and gotten the ball over the net. Yes folks, there is a reason I am confined to back row!

Make one Giant Clump of Puppy Chow. Thanks to Anna Keeley, I can now get small clumps of puppy chow rather than none, but I would love to fit a whole batch of puppy chow (preferably pumpkin) into one clump. Talk about delicious!

Try Some Classes at the Gym. I've always wanted to take a spinning class or a Zumba class!

Walk on Stilts. Apparently my genes aren't okay with my height aspirations, but there are other ways I can attain my (literally) lofty goal!

Convince my Dad that I'm not Cut Out to be an Engineer! Seriously, every year, K-state has an open house, and this year in particular my dad was convinced that I should do industrial or chemical engineering. Apparently, he doesn't want me to waste my "problem solving skills" (Hah!) on dietetics. Oh dear. It didn't help that my career test gave one (out of like 100) possible career of chemical engineering. So yes... my dad says engineering or food science are his top two picks. We shall see... even IF I could handle the math, I'd be working with inanimate objects... objects that don't talk. That would get old so quickly! My dad thinks I should start out in industrial or chemical engineering, and then, in his own words, "If you hate it, you can switch to food science." We shall see!

Ride a Merry-Go-Round and Scream my Head Off. Okay, that doesn't sound nearly so mature in words... oh well!

Share the Gospel on a Daily Basis. A little more serious than the merry-go-round scheme, I know. Right now I am helping with a Good News Club at Fort Riley, and it has been so rewarding. Kevan Meyers from CYIA was such a great example of evangelizing almost daily, and I was so challenged by his example! In some ways, this sounds so terrifying, but at the same time, there are people all around me whose souls are dying! How selfish it would be to keep the Good News to myself!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

My Week In Terms of Pinterest

I love Pinterest because it supplies visual interest (pictures) without me having to upload them. Uploading pictures would probably be easy-peasy if there was anything easy about technology. Seeing as how I still haven't figured out how to use my i-pod, (a Christmas gift) I am sticking to copying and pasting pictures from Pinterest (I really hope this is legal).
First off,I finally got around to studying for the ACT this week, and this dialogue struck me as especially funny, considering I have spent several hours this week trying to figure out the difference between a cosecant and a secant. Ugh.
I wish I were half that witty!

Another occurrence from this week is the accumulation of clothing on my floor. I am running out of creative ideas for outfits... so naturally I threw all the clothes on my floor in hopes of fresh inspiration. Instead, I only attracted the attention of my mother, who has banned me from working out until I clean my room. Probably because she is scared of tucking me in at night?

Legos like a boss
Now granted, mom no longer has to come in my room to spank me, but I must confess that the trek to my bed in the dark has become rather hazardous.
And then there's this one, which is 100% accurate. (So accurate in fact, that my I a friend send it to me on Pinterest).

And then there's this one, which I think is hilariously and very applicable to my week. :)
Safe answer
Actually, I ate chocolate (courtesy of Mary Frances's blog) in the form of black bean brownies for LUNCH. Hey, they're full of protein, right? (Or so I tell myself.) And, by the same logic...
Haha, perfect!
Guess who's making cupcakes? (Just kidding... sort of!)
And then there's this one... I found out two weeks ago that my cousin was "in a relationship." And then today, I find out they're engaged!!! Naturally there was lots of stalkin... err, investigating going on to see who the new member of my family will be. :)
:) Sounds familiar!
Lastly, Mrs. Mann, I am DETERMINED to decrease my comma errors in this upcoming research paper. I thought you would appreciate this one:
grammer humor!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Lessons from Olaf

Olaf - my favorite character :)
Disney has finally won my heart. And I have to admit, it's about time. From princesses dropping from the sky into the arms of a handsome prince to major "love at first sight" overkill, they've definitely overdone it on cliches and plummeting princesses. 

But a snowman? A dancing, talking, summer-loving, willing-to-melt-for-his-friends snowman? (Sorry, I guess the word, "sacrificial" would have sufficed, too.) You sold me.
Though I'm not an avid writer, I love analyzing characters and people... plots, not so much. I will confess that is rather evident in my One Year Adventure Novel. :)

Anyways, I have to get one thing straight. I am not about to try to emulate this naive but oh-so-precious snowman. At least, not completely. I don't think it's realistic to constantly bounce around the room like kangaroo coffee addict. (Plus, while it was cute when Olaf did it, I don't think I would quite pull it off.) However, Olaf is a well-developed character and I do admire him, fictional or not. Don't worry, I'm not about to try to become a snowman (although that would be "cool," my efforts would be "short-lived." Get it? Okay, so my jokes need some work. Anyways...) Here are things I admire about this fictitious snowman: (and some adorable pictures to go with it)

Olaf Quote Miracle alert! A Disney film shows love in the form of sacrifice rather than in the form of a prince with great princess-catching abilities! And guess what? Olaf is the first-ever- (and probably only-ever) snowman to say these words in a Disney movie. And you wonder why I like him?

Olaf! "Put me in summer and I'll be a... happy snowman!!"I love how Olaf is so busy standing up for Elsa, the person in question, that he gets stabbed by an icicle. His response? "Oh, look at that. I've been impaled." This may be over-thinking the situation, but seriously, I don't react well to little blips in my life, let alone impalement. Rather than looking at how small inconveniences fit into the big scheme of things, I overreact to little things. 
Things like running late, bad hair-days, B's in physics, hurtful comments, and volleyball losses. Will these things matter in 10 years? Will I care in heaven that they happened? Obviously Olaf downplayed the situation quite a bit... impalement would usually be a pretty big deal. I tend to "play up" little occurrences in my life to get attention, rather than seeing them in light of the future I have with Jesus. Olaf is fictional. But that doesn't mean we can't learn from him, peoples!

 Olaf has never experienced summer, yet he is looking forward to it! I love that Olaf is looking forward to the unknown! To... change. I hate change. I am afraid of change. Change is scary because it is new and therefore not in my control. Last night we went to a new restaurant! And guess what? I was freaked out because it was new. It turned out to be fine (actually, it was delicious). But I made a fuss because it was not part of my routine. And I was a royal pain because I drug my feet like they were made of lead. 

Granted, you have to draw the line somewhere: Olaf is looking forward to heat which will cause him to melt. Details, details, I know, but still. I don't want to take the analogy too far. (Really guys, I have gone back and forth on posting this because I'm afraid you'll think I've lost it and want to turn into a snowman.)

Some people are worth melting for - Olaf ; Frozen <3Another example of sacrifice. Heart.Just. Melted.>>>>
(Get it??? Heart MELTS. Oh, never mind.)

And now, the REAL reason I instantly love him. Since these are my last words of this post, I will leave you with his first words. Because that seems fittingly ironic.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

{Random Things} Bucket List

I have a confession. A confession that will probably ruin my reputation as a first-born forever. A confession that will shatter the oldest-child stereotype forever. I... (gulp) hate to-do lists. 

I know, I know, I, too, wonder if maybe I am adopted and I am actually a second born or something. But my parents have assured me otherwise. I admire people who like to-do lists. I have even tried to love to-do lists.  But there is something rather overwhelming about seeing everything you have to do, all in one place. I prefer to keep mental to-do lists, and focus on one task at a time. This definitely has its cons, but if I had my way, I would keep all my lists that way, all the while admiring those people who just love being productive and checking things off. :)

However, I do not hate ALL lists. Bucket lists have always been something I enjoy thinking about. Bucket lists are fun because I separate them from my goals. Goals are something I actually endeavor to reach, and feel horrible if I do not attain them. On the other hand, bucket lists are something I love to think about because I feel no pressure to succeed at them. They are more "dreams" than "necessary tasks" (Although the incessant cookie baking is probably a must). 

Here are a few things that have made my bucket list:

 Wheel Chair Races in a Nursing Home: Yes, I must admit, I am rather excited to grow old. I want to be an elderly aunt who power-walks frequently, incessantly bakes cookies, and takes her nieces on coffee dates (the best way to communicate love to anyone!) I do not intend to HAVE to use a wheel chair, but I will probably purchase several at age 50, since that is close enough to "old" to have wheel chair races. (DO NOT tell my mother I said that!)
( I'm thinking this pink shade would suit me quite well. And no, I am not ashamed that I have already found my future wheel chair.)
Walk up to a Stranger and Pretend Like I Know Them: Don't judge. I think I was meant for this. We could even compare notes on the wedding we didn't attend together. Seeing their bewilderment would be totally worth it.

Make a 7-layer cake: Either that or a crepe cake. Doesn't that sound fun! I'm thinking red-velvet or lemon. Maybe chocolate-peanut butter?
... red velvet layer cake this moist chocolate red velvet cake is filled

( This cake is only six layers... skimpy, I know. But it was pretty, so I picked it.)

Go  Christmas Caroling In July: My dad thinks I'm crazy, but I think it would be fun to maybe even have a whole Christmas PARTY in July. We could decorate Christmas cookies and dig through our closet to find our fake Christmas tree... we're supposed to keep the Christmas Spirit alive all year, right? 

Live out in the Country: Only with fewer hills. I love that there is less traffic out here, and even though I'm a somewhat loud person, I definitely need quiet, too. 

Host People for Dinner Weekly: I don't care if I stay single forever, but I want to invite people into my house/apartment/dugout (joking, but seriously, I have no clue where I will live) on a regular basis. I greatly admire hospitable people, and want to make welcoming people into my home a habit, not an exception. 

I know there are more, but I  cannot think of them at this time. I may inform you of my others in a future post. Until then, I'm signing off!


Monday, March 10, 2014

{People I Love} Savanna

7 years. That’s how long I’ve been blessed to know Savanna DeWolf! And in case you’re wondering, I’m dedicating this post to her because her birthday was this past Saturday.  I’m so thankful for her friendship, her loyalty, and her patience. Lots of patience. Here are some tidbits about her!
A few character qualities I love about Savanna:
·         She is an incredible listener—I can’t remember a single time she has interrupted me!
·         She has a beautiful smile that she shares with EVERYONE.
·         She has a sarcastic-yet-gentle sense of humor. J
·         She can keep a secret better than anyone else I know.
·         She is a clear, systematic teacher. I have learned so much from her—from Algebra help to card games.
·         She is willing to push her comfort zone to follow God

Some of Savanna’s many talents/gifts include:
  • ·         Her memory—I think it’s pretty close to photographic. She is especially good at remembering numbers, facts, statistics, and small details.
  • ·         She has an eye for photography. Her pictures are often unique, vibrant, and tastefully considered.
  • ·         Like I said before, she is a gifted teacher. While I struggle with being systematic and thorough, she is both of these things.
  • ·         She is smart. And I mean smart! I think the combination of her fantastic memory and attention to detail as well as her attentiveness to schoolwork all contribute to her  obvious intelligence.
  • ·         She is an engaging writer. I still have a story she wrote for me that applied directly to something I was struggling with. Which leads me to my next point…
  • ·         She is thoughtful. Aside from the example above, another time she displayed her thoughtfulness was a secret sister gift she gave me several years ago. Most people (okay, it was probably just me) were pretty last-minute about their secret sister gifts, perhaps giving their partner candy or a short note. But Savanna gave me decorated recipe notebook, with a note inside. I use this notebook weekly, and it is now full of recipes I love! I still read the note and am encouraged by it.
  • ·         She is quite the artist. She understands how colors go together, and can knit, croquet, draw, and modge podge really well. I think her detailed-ness helps her here, too. 

Finally, here is a poem I wrote for her birthday. It doesn't come close to telling how she has blessed me, but it does share a few of my favorite memories with her.

Little Girl with Glasses 
There’s a new girl with some glasses
Who is going to join our choir.
This new girl has an orange room…
I can tell I’m going to like her!

This new girl with the glasses
Is great at pretend play!
Her basement is the perfect place
For spending rainy days.

It’s perfect for a hospital
To care for our sick dolls.
It even makes a great big zoo
Complete with horses’ stalls.

I  like this girl with glasses!
She’s really, really smart.
She’s good at mostly everything
From mental math to art.

 This little girl with glasses
Is also very brave.
She ate Mom’s pheasant nuggets,
Which are kind of an acquired taste.

The other day was really fun!
 We climbed up onto the roof!
Until mom saw our siblings follow
And told us both to scoot.

 It’s official, this girl with glasses
Is growing up too fast!
I want our days of roofs and dolls
To stay right here and last!

Now this girl with glasses
Is turning eighteen today.
Change is just around the corner,
But these sweet memories are here to stay.

Monday, March 3, 2014

{Instructions} A Hypothetical Scenario

Dear Reader,
I thought since this week in class we're learning how to write instructions, I'd write some for you. In order to challenge myself, I thought I would write them about something I know next to nothing about. So, this is a hypothetical situation to which I am not in the least familiar.

How to Set Yourself up for a Stressful Week:

  • Yourself
  • A co-Sunday School Teacher
  • Your physics book
  • A skirt
  • A car
  • Siblings and/or a parent
  • A missing memory (if you don't have one, you can borrow mine... if you can find it. Although then it wouldn't be missing.) 
(See, this will not be complicated.)

Step 1.) Procrastinate both your physics tests until the Friday before they are due.

Step 2.) Forget to correspond with your co-Sunday School Teacher about who is teaching what in class until late Saturday night.

Step 3.) Wear a skirt ice-skating. (If you're a guy, this could be especially stressful, just saying.)

Step 4.) Go driving with your little siblings who are convinced they are going to die while you are at the wheel. ( If you don't have little siblings, another option would be to go driving with your mom, who is equally convinced of your prominent peril.)

Step 5.) Arrive late to Sunday School

Step 6.) Forget to blog until 10 minutes before the deadline.

Step 7.) Happy Stressing!

If you are still convinced this is a hypothetical situation, then I like you!!!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Another List!

I don't know about the rest of you, but I'm running out of "interesting" things to post on my blog. So, whoever's idea it was to ask a question and then answer if yourself, prepare to be flattered! I'm copying you!

What is your full name? Hannah Brienne Peterman.  Sidenote: "Brienne" (which spell-check says is not a word... rude!)  means "strong," and I was born a prematurely at 3 lbs, 15 ounces, so my parents figured I'd need some strength. :)

What did you eat for breakfast today? Oatmeal and almonds. (I'm addicted to nuts in general.)

What did you eat for snack this morning?  Ummm, almonds. Oh dear.

What are you going to eat for lunch today? Let's just not go there.

What was the last movie you saw in theaters? Frozen. Olaf, are you single?

What is your favorite book of the Bible? Books, actually. Probably the Psalms and Philippians. They are encouraging and challenging.

If I could live anywhere, where would you live? Manhattan, KS. Although I would move our house (and 20 acre) property to the middle of town so it would be flatter. Hills are tough sometimes, you guys,  Either that or I would just smoosh our hills into flat spaces and keep our location. Because that would be kind of fun.

What is your favorite piano song that you're playing? Prelude I by George Gershwin. Here's a video of someone playing it better than I ever will. (Notice I picked a full grown man to make me look better as opposed to a 8 year old girl who can play my piece well. Some people! )

Favorite Foods? I have to pick?! Pretzels, grilled chicken, and, well, almonds. Oh, and ice cream. Annnd cereal.

Are there any foods that you don't like? I know, the idea is a bit shocking, but there are few. I don't like potatoes (unless they're sweet potatoes), salami, or American cheese.

What do you do in your spare time? I talk to people, attempt (usually unsuccessfully) to stay in shape, bake, and occasionally, read.

Facts that might surprise other people? I'm not a huge movie person, though I'll watch them with friends in a heartbeat. My greatest pet-peeve is probably when people act superior to other people. I love a good debate, and I love miniature versions of just about anything.

Favorite Qualities in  Person? Joy regardless of  circumstances, truth spoken in love, and a desire to serve rather than benefit.

The thing(s)  you would most like to change about yourself? My quick tongue, (Yes, Bethany Marteney, I can be really unkind!) my tendency towards comparison, and parts of my appearance.

Favorite Quotes? Choosing is hard, but here are a few:

It is a choice!

"Joy is the serious business of heaven." C.S. Lewis

C.S. Lewis, you are so wise!!!!!!!

obedience. Francis Chan

And lastly: 
"You are entirely bonkers. But I'll telll you a secret. All the best people are."  Alice In Wonderland

Monday, February 17, 2014

Family Phases

Many years ago, my brother, Blaize, was obsessed, and I mean obsessed, with plastic dinosaurs. All his money, time, and energy was poured into acquiring and playing with his dinosaurs.  He send the other dinosaurs into a tailspin with a flick of his Stegosaurus's tail. He made his Pachycephalosarus bonk heads with the other dinosaurs. His T-Rex (thank goodness for abbreviated dinosaur names) was on constant patrol scouring the surface of Blaize's bedroom floor for lunch. Endless entertainment could be found spending time with his plastic "friends." 
And then, suddenly, Blaize was interested in plastic building supplies called Playmobile. Again,a few years later, it was the dreaded Lego. (More on that later.) Needless to say, Blaize's interests have changed multiple times throughout the years. 

I laugh at his sudden changes in interests. I mean, the only common thread that I can see with them is that they are all made out of plastic. But truth be told, I think we all go through "phases" of some sort--times when we're super passionate about a subject, only to drop it when something better comes along.

So, here is a list of interests for each one of my family members (for as long as I have known them.) 
My Mom: She's been pretty steady-eddy. She loves decorating our home, counseling other people, and reading a good book. ( I think the reason she has fewer hobbies is because she is so busy helping us kids pursue ours!)

My Dad: Playing Airsoft with my brother, cooking lunch on Sundays for Mom (always eggs, along with random leftovers from our fridge-- he scares me SO badly) and playing a board game called Qwirkle. EVERY night. Unfortunately, the game is a series of decisions. Which is great for the the first two turns, and not so great when my brain is after nine grueling decisions, at which point my family sets the timer and groans as I try to make up my mind. Decisions in competition are SO hard, because if you make the decision you might lose! 

Me: You'd think I'd know by now... I'm working on developing hobbies, but so far I enjoy being outside, shoveling snow,  and looking forward to volleyball season. 

Natalie: She reads a lot! That girl is well-read! Oh, and she studies a lot, too! Also, she has been working on decorating her room, which is looking great! She is always doing something creative... from watercoloring to snow cream-making to room-decorating. 

Blaize: Right now, it's Airsoft, calling Noah Salts on the phone (I've always thought girls were the talkers, but no! Blaize can talk for over an hour several times a week on the phone. If it weren't for my mom and Mrs. Salts setting limits, who knows how long the phone calls would last or how frequently they would occur). And lastly, the dreaded Lego. The often litter his floor, making it a health hazard at night time. I believe if I were ever to create my own torture chamber, I would tile the floors with Legos. Just saying.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Copy-Cat Post: Things that Make Me Smile

Before I start, let me say that this type of post was not my idea. Lots of other bloggers have been doing "Things I'm Loving," or "Curious Ramblings," etc. But I've loved this idea since Mary Frances' first post, and nothing too post-worthy has happened of late, so please forgive my lack of originality as I "flatter" these creative bloggers by "copying" them. (Mom always says, "Copying is the best form of flattery." So bloggers, please be flattered, not mad!)

Things that make me smile:

1.) Our 4-H skit! I just went to my first practice yesterday, and the character I get to play is a hoot! The setting is a blind date, which just happens to be during an important football game. Melanie, (that's me) is devoted Bears fan... probably a bit too devoted. She almost has a split personality of sorts. At first meeting, she is very sweet and enjoyable, but very distracted by the Bears game. (She wants to check the score after she and Jake have barely met, puts on an ear-piece thingie to listen to the game, etc.) Then, as the Bears start losing, she stands up in restaurant and screams plays they should be doing. Realizing she is being a distraction, she sits back down apologetically, only to tear the menu and burst into tears when her team loses.  It is rather amusing... I just hope I can do her justice!

2.) Meat and Eggs! For years I have tried to choke down a few bites at a time at most. Mom always would lecture me about how I needed protein to grow, and I'd sit there chowing away at my fourth piece of toast. And now that I'm done growing and have stopped at 5'2, guess what? I like chicken. And eggs. And turkey. And... protein! Of course, it's a little bit late, but, hey, these foods stick with me a lot longer than bread and fruit, which I pretty much lived off of. And you never know, may be I'll have a giant growth spurt during college... hey, stop laughing! It could happen!

3.) Shoveling Snow! It's my new hobby! There is something so satisfying about seeing immediate, visible progress from doing a task! I like it when everyone can SEE I've accomplished something. Yes, I still have a lot to work on in the people pleasing arena, I know.
The only annoyance is when the wind undoes all my work. That took me a while to get over.

4.) New Stories to Tell! Natalie was playing airsoft for the first time ever with my dad and brother. I'm surprised they convinced her to, but they did! We only have three guns, so it was Blaize and Natalie against my dad. My dad was hiding behind our deck, and he heard the crunch of snow behind him. Immediately, my dad whirled and shot in the direction of the footsteps. Unfortunately, Natalie was pretty close to him, and though she was wearing eye and ear protection, she didn't have anything covering her mouth. He nailed her front teeth, which immediately chipped. Family reactions differed: Papa felt horrible. Mom immediately asked if she needed ibuprofen. Blaize seemed a bit worried but excited,  and I... I have a confession to make. I was immediately jealous that she had such a great war wound AND story to tell. I mean, I do way more reckless things than she does, and she always gets the war-wounds. The thing that gets me most is... they want to FIX her teeth?!?! In essence, they want to remove the evidence of that fabulous story, and erase that beautiful war wound. I will never understand this course of action.

5.) A Volleyball Practice Today! Will I be out of practice? Yes! Will I be sore tomorrow? Probably! Will I enjoy every minute of it? Is that a question?? It's volleyball!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Family Post #2-Natalie!!!

I realized I have both posted and written an essay about my Dad, but the rest of my family has been neglected! Speaking of neglected, my subject of my post, the photographer of the family, seems to have avoided nearly every picture taken. So, we're taking a brief (and slightly embarrassing) flashback to the early 2000's so that I can have some pictures of Natalie on this blog. Don't worry, Nat. We're both in this humiliation together. (You just don't know about it yet.)
I have creatively titled this one "Mystified Looks and Reading Books"

And this one is dubbed, "Looking Extremely Attractive While Standing By A Tree."

 Don't you think the Pooh tie-dye is attractive? It's coming back any day now, I'm sure.

Back to Natalie and her awesomeness. I said earlier that we're "both in this Humiliation together," and, truth be told, we have been "in it together" for most of our lives.
Here are just a few of our early memories:

  • Tying Blaize up to a tree... and then realizing we were better at making knots than we'd previously thought. 
  • Playing "Animals" together with our stuffed animals, and naming any new dogs as "Doggy" despite the fact that we had three "Doggys" already.
  • Hanging upside down from my top bunk bed to her lower bed to talk as long as we could until the blood rushed to my head.
  • Freaking out about the  non-existent monster under the bed
  • Day-dreaming about American Girl Dolls
And more recently...

  • Baking Green Velvet Cake that looked more like Vomit Velvet Cake than green.
  • Staying up 'till three watching Jane Austin movies
  • Laughing as we try to complete a karate workout in a small space
  • Stressing about our Science grades
  • Talking late into the night

  • Some things I admire about Natalie are:
    • Her willingness to laugh at my less-than-funny jokes
    • Her diligence in school and her relationship with God
    • Her sweetness to forgive me over and over again
    • Her generosity with her money, time, and energy
    • Her kindness in making me look really sweet when she talks about me on her blog
    • Her ability to make people feel comfortable and special
    • Her musical skills... she can harmonize singing way better than I can, and can sound out most tunes on the piano naturally.
    A few of Natalie's talents include:
    • Photography... hence the reason I have no pictures of her!
    • Art... you should see it! I am so amazed at her creativity and eye for detail
    • Telling stories... read her blog! It's full of them, and they always make me laugh.
    • Cleaning... I'm telling you, her room is immaculate.
    •  Remembering details... while I forget things everywhere I go, Natalie is organized and on top of it.
    • Decorating... she is re-doing her room, and it looks beautiful! How can you go wrong with aqua and grey chevron?
    • Resourcefulness... she can take something totally ordinary and make it useful and pretty!
    Things Natalie needs to know about herself:
    • She is loved! By friends, family, me, and God!
    • She is smart! She gets good grades, is fun conversationalist, and an intelligent friend. She is a critical thinker and she is very detailed.
    • She is talented: Natalie, you are so good at so many things! (See above list.) God has given you so many gifts that everyone but you can see!
    • She is a BLESSING. My life wouldn't be complete without you, Natalie! You are a loyal friend, a godly example, and the BEST sister. I admire and love you so much!
    You are valuable, loved, and talented Natalie. I thank God for YOU!