Thursday, June 30, 2005

Last Time With My Titus 2 Women

"..teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderrs or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God" (Titus 2:3-5).

The rest of my typical Wednesday night: These are the beautiful women of God (most of them being my soon-to-be cousins, aunts, or mother/grandmother-in-law) whom I have Bible study with every Wednesday. Unfortunately two of the ladies (the mom and sister of the girl next to me in green) were gone last night. Anyway, they're all related, just not all to each other (it's kind of confusing), and as you can see, they range in age from late teens to seventies. It's a unique but wonderful thing when women across generational lines can come together like this and share the journey together. Studying God's Word and sharing life with them these past few months has been such a blessing. I have learned a lot from them and have so enjoyed their fellowship--I'm going to miss this so much! Posted by Hello

Dinner and Girl Time

My best friend, Julie, and me enjoying dinner at Subway. This has been a typical (usually Wednesday) night for me every week for the last nine months or so. When I decided to move home for this year of waiting to be married, I had no idea that a HUGE blessing was in store for me! Getting to reconnect with Julie (who's been my best friend for eight years, since I was a freshman in high school) has been so wonderful. I don't know what I would do without her...she's an incredible best friend and also my matron of honor...which means she's been forced to listen to all the wedding details, and she not only tolerates it, but listens attentively, asks about it, and offers help and support!

I have been so spoiled these last few months getting to have time with her every week, I don't know what I am going to do without it.

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Going to the Chapel and We're...

...(both) gonna get ma-a-arried!

Finally, a picture of Lindsay, who I blogged about several weeks ago but didn't have a picture of :) This amazing girl was my roommate for our senior year of'll meet her if you come to my wedding because she's doing the guestbook...and she's getting married August 13! I got to go to her shower last Saturday and wish her well...SO excited for her and Justin!Posted by Hello

Monday, June 27, 2005

I'm getting married in five days!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, June 23, 2005

We Have an Apartment!!!!

Steve and I have a place to live! He talked to the lady at the apartment complex in Tennessee where we applied, and they now officially have a vacancy and it's ours! We're just waiting on a fax with all the official paperwork...but we have an apartment! I am so excited! Thanks for your prayers!

Monday, June 20, 2005

Busy Busy

Haven't been blogging lately because every spare minute is either spent with Steve, on wedding details, or on packing/organizing/cleaning/preparing to move. Suffice to say life is a little nutso right now with 12 DAYS left until I'm married!!

Had lunch with some old high school girlfriends on Saturday, that was fun. Should have snapped a photo but, what can you do.

Right now I should be working instead of blogging, I'm procrastinating and better get back to it. So...don't hold your breath for a lot of posts in the next month or so, between the wedding, honeymoon and moving. But keep checking back, I may log on now and then, and by the end of July I'll be back in the world of the bloggers :)

Monday, June 13, 2005

He Did It!

Yay! Steve is officially an alumnus of the University of Cincinnati...

...which means we are forever DONE with the long-distance thing!! It seems so surreal...after two years and four months of being separated by at least 200 miles, he is now living just five minutes away from me, and will be until the wedding in 19 days! Wow, it's so hard to believe.

I went down to Cincy with Steve's mom, dad and little brother for graduation on Friday, and then we spent the rest of the day and part of Saturday morning moving him out and cleaning the first floor of the house. The idea of moving again in just a few weeks, times two with all my stuff, is a bit overwhelming...but what can you do.
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Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Peace (God's Love Letter to Me Today)

I was feeling frustrated, anxious and generally just upset this morning, so I sat down to have some much-needed quiet time. Unfortunately I realized I'd left my Bible in my car, which my dad had for the day, so I grabbed my NIV Worship Bible (what a luxury to have multiple Bibles on my shelf, when some people would give everything they have for ONE Bible, or others have never even read the Bible in their own language...). I opened to Isaiah, and it fell open to Isaiah 26. There I found a page titled "My Beloved"--a feature in the Worship Bible where they take several related passages, paraphrase them and put them all together as a love letter from God. Boy if this one wasn't exactly meant for me today...and I thought, how cool is that, that I had to use my other Bible today, and I would open to this page and be reassured from God that He is the God of peace. Here it is:

My Beloved

I know that you have become weary and feel the weight of the world on your shoulders. Come to Me and I will give you rest. Bring all your anxiety and fear to Me and leave them with Me. I will keep you in perfect peace when you keep your mind on Me and trust Me. I care about you.

Know that I have given you My peace. I do not give to you as the world gives...and then takes away. So do not let your heart be troubled and do not be afraid. I will fill you with joy and peace if you will trust in Me.

Instead of dwelling on confusion and anxiety, present your concerns to Me in prayer. And be thankful. Then let your mind dwell on things that are true and noble, things that are right and pure, things that are lovely and admirable--all that is excellent and praiseworthy. And the peace you will have--My peace--you will not be able to explain to others. No one can understand it, but you can have it.

Live your life according to My instructions, and I will be with you; because I am the God of peace, My peace will stand guard over your heart and mind in Christ Jesus.

Thanks God. You knew just what I needed today.

Idiot Moment of the Week

So I invited Andee and Jamie Davis, two high school age girls that I've been friends with for several years now (Jamie is my junior bridesmaid), over for lunch today. We made mini-pizzas and generally had a good time. Well, Andee's a lifeguard and had to be to work at 12:30, and we were cutting it close. I still had to give Jamie her bridesmaid dress, so we thought, well, Andee can go ahead to work instead of having to drop Jamie off, and I'll take Jamie home, no problem. Andee leaves, Jamie tries on her dress, we go to leave, and suddenly it hits me:

I don't have a car today. My dad's car is getting fixed, and he has my car today. I had a car this morning to use for some errands, but my mom left town after that. We had decided it wouldn't be a problem for me to be "stranded" because I didn't have to go anywhwere this afternoon. But, of course that slipped my mind when I said I could take Jamie home.

So, I racked my brain, but we had no other option but to walk. I felt HORRIBLE. It is 93 degrees outside today, and Jamie and I walked a mile in the heat to her house. I couldn't make her go by herself. She said she didn't mind and we had good conversation on the way back...but I am sure she's probably going to be all, "Mom and Dad, guess what, Amy's an airhead and I had to walk home from her house today." ARGH!

Then of course, after cooling off for a few minutes in the A/C at her house, and getting a glass of water, I had to walk the mile back to my house. In the sun and 93-degree heat. I hope I didn't get sunburned, as touchy as my skin is :( What an afternoon.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

The happy couple in 1980! Posted by Hello

Happy Anniversary!

My parents were married June 7, 1980, so today, they are celebrating 25 years of marriage! Posted by Hello (I scanned their original wedding picture for the paper; I might try to post it :)

My dad surprised my mom by arranging for them to renew their vows. It was just them, my brother, me and the pastor and his wife. My mom, my dad and me all definitely cried. I surprised them by getting the track for a song that was sung at their wedding and singing it when they arrived...yeah, definitely couldn't even get through the first verse because I was bawling! It was so sweet. I feel very blessed to have grown up in a home where both parents are there and loving toward each other and their children...a great example of a stable, faithful marriage.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

An Open Letter to Everyone Who Has Graciously and Sympathetically Listened to Me Complain About Wedding Planning

I have been ridiculous. I realize this. Yes, most of the planning so far has been drama-filled and frustrating. Yes, the details have not gone smoothly. Yes, I have felt annoyed and overwhelmed. But for all of you who have listened to me vent, please gently and firmly remind me of this:

In 27 days, I will be marrying the most incredible man in the world. (I really feel sorry for all the rest of you who will have to settle for second-best.) A month from now, I will be lying on a beach in Maui with my new husband. July 2 will be the happiest, most wonderful day of my life. Sometimes I still have a hard time believing it's not just a fairy tale.

I hope the music is beautiful. I hope the flowers are pretty. I'd like to have yummy reception food and a great-looking hall. But ultimately, it doesn't matter. A wedding is a wonderfully happy occasion--a cause for celebration--not a chore. So, somehow, instead of spending the next four weeks stressing out and losing every remaining marble, I need to let go of my perfectionism, my anxiety that every detail must be exactly right, my indecisiveness, and maintain a little perspective.

The truth is, if you come, I don't care if you leave saying, "the cake tasted great" or "the bridesmaid dresses were cute" or "the church was gorgeous." I hope you leave saying, "The Holy Spirit was truly present at that wedding." And I hope you leave saying, "They are so happy and in love--God has truly blessed Amy and Steve by bringing them together, and it was neat to see and share in their joy."

See you in 27 days. I'll be the one in the white dress who can't stop grinning all night long :)

Saturday, June 04, 2005


After the wedding, Sara (one of the girls I used to mentor at IWU) was gracious enough to drive an hour down to Kalamazoo and meet me for coffee at Barnes and Noble. It was soooo great! We basically took turns talking each other's ears off for about two hours. What a great time to catch up! This girl totally shines with Jesus through and through--she is so exuberant and she is such a blessing and an encouragement to me!

I love the kind of friendships where you can go a while without talking, then get together and pick up right where you left off--skipping the small talk and diving deep right away. More and more I realize, as I have friends spread out all over the country, that you can't expect to keep in close contact with everyone who's ever been close to you. If you tried, you'd spend your life on email or the phone, and you wouldn't make new friends--you wouldn't be able to be "all there" right where you are. That's why I value friendships like Sara's so much. It is wonderful to be able to go six weeks or so without seeing someone, and then totally pour our your heart to her and hear her share her heart as well!

God has put so many incredible women in my life...I feel very thankful and blessed. Posted by Hello


Schmamela, Schmamanda and Schmamy together again! I heart these girls soooo much!! Posted by Hello

The "beautiful redhead from chorale," as my mom refers to her, got MARRIED today!! AAAH! She was a stunning bride and the day was beautiful. I am so excited for her and Wes. And it was so good to catch up with Pam a bit after we've not seen each other in forever!

Amanda had several chorale members sing at the wedding...I found out about this and got roped into it at the last minute...only problem was, I had never sung one of the two songs, and they were back to back so I couldn't just go up for the other one. I was just going to not sing, but the chorale members begged me to because they desperately needed more sopranos. So there I was, 20 minutes before the ceremony, listening to the song on someone's iPod and trying to learn enough to fake it. Riiiiiight...that was interesting.

At any rate, my wedding is now just four weeks away, and I am really starting to get anxious. Being at Amanda's wedding today made me excited, and ready to BE the one getting married instead of just watching...but it also made me feel overwhelmed and nervous as I consider all the details that need to be taken care of in the next 28 days...yikes...

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

My only two female cousins, Kali and Bekah--we had a family get-together this weekend in honor of Kali, who just graduated with her doctorate in pharmacy, and Bekah is five months pregnant with her second baby! Posted by Hello