Upon the highest bow.

Christmas is almost here! I found this nifty little website that’s dedicated to telling us how long it is until Christmas. Right now it’s 31 days, 23 hours, and 29 minutes, give or take a few seconds. So exciting!

Since I last updated my blog, I’ve become quite the domestic housewife-in-training. I’ve cooked two apple pies in two days, and fed my guy friends a lot of good food. I’ve found that I love baking. And I love it more when I get to practice baking things for my friends. The friends I feed the most are, of course, the guys. The apartment building where I live houses a lot of my friends, and those who don’t live in this building live right down the street from me, so I have a lot of taste-testers. They love it, though… who would pass up free food? And, maybe I’m making this up, but I’m pretty sure they love having people (girls) cook for them while they watch football or Futurama.

OK, so a break from Christmas now: Thanksgiving is in a few days!
This Thanksgiving, we’re spending it with my Nana and Pop (my mom’s parents), who happen to live five minutes from our house, and my Aunt Cathleen, Uncle Tom, and cousins Caitlin and Sarah. I love them! I’m sure I mentioned this in a previous post, but I’m really excited to see them! It’s been too long.

I’ve also decided that this Thanksgiving will be the one when I start really helping my mom, nana, and aunt in the kitchen with the cooking. I figure that I’m the oldest child in my family, and the oldest grandchild on my mom’s side, so I have to step up. I’m really excited. I’m going to make apple pie (which I have now perfected!), and help with whatever else needs to be done. And after that, I’ll have a glass of wine with the women (Mom, Nana, and Aunt Cathleen), because I’m 21 now. :]

My mom’s thinking about taking me to an outlet store for their Black Friday sale at midnight after Thanksgiving dinner. I’m not normally a Black Friday Shopper, but I figure that I’ll give it a try.

I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving. I have to go to sleep because I’m driving to the airport in the morning with a friend. Peace and Blessings! <3

Tik tok.

During my devotions tonight I was reading through 1 John. In the devotional book I’m doing along with reading the Bible, there was a passage regarding 1 John 1:4. The verse is: “We write this to make our joy complete.” The statement regarding that verse reads, “With his final words being ‘make our joy complete,’ he described a perfect and permanent situation that will occur only in heaven…. In this way, he led his readers back to before time existed and forward to when time as we know it will no longer exist” (Emphasis added).

As soon as I read the words indicated in bold, I caught myself having a small heart attack. I’m a very punctual person, and I like to be five or ten minutes early to all of my appointments. Whether it’s class, rehearsal, Sunday School, Bible Study, etc; if I’m not early, I’m late. So reading and realizing that time won’t exist when we’re in heaven freaked me out a little bit.

As I write this, I’m trying to figure out why time is such an important part of my life. I really value my time, and when people take up my time without my consent (i.e., class runs over the allotted time, people drive too slowly) I get really frustrated. I’m understanding now that the concept of time and being on time and keeping everything running on time is just one of the many idols I have in my life. Idols don’t have to be golden statues; idols can be laziness, the need for acceptance, time, pride, money, work, school, anything that takes the place of God.

There are so many things that I put before God, and time is definitely one of my idols. I don’t even mean to idolize my time and time management, but Satan’s tricky like that: he’ll sneak things onto the top of your priority list that you didn’t even see until they’ve already pushed God out of the way. He’ll distract you with things that are seemingly good, until you realize (and even if you don’t realize) they’ve taken God’s place. It’s a daily struggle for me to keep God first in my heart and mind, especially when there are so many other things I have to do each day. The only way to keep God as my top priority is to pray and read His word daily.

If I don’t post until after Thanksgiving, have a wonderful holiday and safe travels!

O holy night.

Christmas thought of the day:
The Office did a really funny Christmas episode where Dwight comes up with a lucrative yet sinister idea to buy, in bulk, the very in-demand Princess Unicorn dolls, and then sell them for a jacked-up price to parents who had forgotten to buy the dolls in advance. This should make you want to buy Christmas presents early. Starting … now.

I’ve been going through the book of 1 John with a wonderful devotion book called Shepherds Notes, and it’s taking me forever. There’s just a lot of back-story to get through, and then there’s a lot of meaning packed into each verse. It’s not a very long book at all, just five chapters, but it’s taking me a while… I’m trudging through slowly.

In other news, I’m going back to New Jersey in 8 days! I’m so excited; I haven’t seen my brothers and sisters since August, and it’s pretty much killing me. Quality time must be spent with them while I’m home.

Finally, I’d just like to remind you, my faithful(?) readers, that Christmas is not just a time for trees and presents, but a time to remember our Savior who came as a baby to save us from sin. All praise and honor and glory be to Him, forever and ever, amen.

Christmastime is here.

“Wait. Is she for real? It’s only November!”

Yes, I’m for real. Christmastime is most definitely here. The day after Halloween, I start the Christmas music. I can only wait that long before I get the urge to listen to my favorite carols and the various arrangements of classic tunes. For instance, have you ever heard of Straight No Chaser? SNC is a male a cappella group originally from Indiana University. They have two fantastic Christmas albums out, and they’re a staple to my holiday season. And then there are the oldies-but-goodies… those songs by sultry Frank, classy Bing, The Andrews Sisters, and the great Ella Fitzgerald. Then you have to listen to the-man-with-the-voice-of-an-angel himself: Josh Groban. As a reputable source said: “Who is Josh Groban? Kill yourself! He is an angel sent from Heaven to deliver platinum albums unto us. And if he were here right now I would club you to death with his Critic’s Choice award!” And Christmas Caroling. That’s my favorite thing to do during Christmastime. I love to sing (didn’t you know?), so any time I get to sing Christmas songs with my friends is a good time.

This time of year is my favorite because I love the holidays. Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years… they’re wonderful. I love being with my family, and I love the wonderful food, I love the weather (Snow is amazing. I’ll always be a Northerner at heart.), and it’s so much fun giving presents (and getting them too, of course). I wish I saw my family more often, but now that I’m stuck in college for another year and a half, I only get to go home three times a year: Thanksgiving, Winter Break, and Summer Break. So when Thanksgiving rolls around, I’m more than elated to be heading back north for family time.

This Thanksgiving, my cousins are coming from Pennsylvania to visit, which they haven’t done in a while, so I’m super psyched. I love my cousins with all of my heart; they’re more like siblings than cousins. My cousin Caitlin is the closest in age to me (she’s almost 20, I just turned 21), and she and I are inseparable when we visit each other. I love her so much, and I’m so excited that this Thanksgiving I get to spend a few days just hanging out with her and being goofballs together. Of course, her younger sister Sarah is wonderful too (can’t leave her out or she’ll kill me). It’s funny: Sarah and I look like we’re sisters, and Caitlin and my sister Krista look like they’re sisters. I really do love them both. I’m just sad that my other cousins won’t be visiting for Thanksgiving (Julia’s stuck in Iowa or Idaho or somewhere, and Emily’s stuck with her parents in Maine).

I can’t mention my love for Christmas without mentioning my love for the One who made Christmas an actual event. You know who I’m alluding to. Jesus is the One who was sent as a baby on Christmas Day, the One who was born of the Virgin Mary, the One whom the Wise Men visited, the One of whom the shepherds were told while watching their flocks by night, the One who grew up to die for the sins of the world, the One who is the only way to Heaven. (For a complete synopsis of everything I just mentioned, read the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John in the Bible.) He is the clichéd “Reason for the Season.” He was the one King who became a Baby, just for us. And He is the reason we even celebrate. So yes, all of the wonderful seasonal things are fabulous, but what really matters is what He did for us.

This post might have been better suited for December, but with all the Christmas music bubbling around my brain, it had to be written now.

God rest ye merry, Gentlemen. <3

There’s no way to train for this marathon.

Here’s a goals update:

Number 57: I teach voice lessons for real! I work at the Columbia Arts Academy, and it’s wonderful! I teach all ages, but most of the kids are early teens. I’m learning a lot, and making such great money!! It pays to be a music student :]

Number 94: I had a Lord of the Rings Movie Marathon last night. My friend Abi and I decided that this would be the best time to do it since we didn’t have classes today (voting day!). She and her friend Heather brought Hobbit Food (apples, cheeses, crackers) to my apartment, and I supplied the soda and sparkling cider (because who doesn’t love sparkling cider?). We started the movies at 7pm and, with the necessary bathroom and stretching breaks between movies, we finished all three extended editions at 7am this morning. There were only a few of us who stayed for the entire marathon, but there were a lot of people who stopped by intermittently. It was such a fun night! Towards the end of the marathon, we all got a little loopy from lack of sleep, and we all got a lot closer to each other because of it. :]

The life of a college student is never boring. <3