Sunday, March 28, 2010

The Single Most Powerful Question You Can Ask-Donald Miller

How to make a decision:


Here are some questions I came up with that help me sort my thoughts and motives when I am freaking out about making decisions. I'd say it is most important to be honest, compare your answers to Biblical scripture, and invite the Holy Spirit into your answers. I prefer to write out it because it helps me sort my thoughts. Sometimes it gets repetitive, but I find it useful to discover common threads and themes in my life. Feel free to give it a try.

What do I want right now?
What is important to me right now?
What do I need right now?
What do I want for my future?
What is important for my future?
What do I need for my future?
What can I learn from my past?

Friday, March 5, 2010

Music: The Song of Purple Summer

From the musical Spring Awakening

And all shall fade
the flowers of spring
the world and all the sorrows
at the heart of everything

but still it stays
the butterfly sings
and opens purple summer
with a flutter of its wings

the earth will wave with corn
the grey-fly choir will mourn
and mares will neigh
with stallions that they mate
foals they've borne

and all shall know the wonder
of purple summer...

And yet, I wait
the swallow brings
a song too hard to follow
that no one else can sing

the fences sway
the porches swing
the clouds begins to thunder
crickets wander, murmuring

the earth will wave with corn
the grey-fly choir will mourn
and mares will neigh
with stallions that they mate
foals they've borne

and all shall know the wonder
I will sing the song of purple summer

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Lists: Concepts I Love

This is my favorite of all my lists. To you, the items may just look like a hodgepodge of randomness, but for one reason or another, they just make me feel alive. I've tried to explain why I like them, so feel free to psychoanalyze me. I'm sure you'll be exactly right.

A pencil sharpened at both ends-
I love the fact that there is no chance of erasing what you have written or drawn with a double-ended pencil. There's a kind of "no regrets/happy accidents" attitude about it.

Sitting on a suitcase to close it-
This is just so funny to me, and I have caught myself doing it so many times!

Eating icicles-
Nature's popsicle! I mean, c'mon!

Saying "good night" to someone you love-
It's so good to be in a relationship where no matter what differences you have during the day, you never go to bed without having them come to an understanding. "Good night" just seems to seal the deal without risking "I love you" being used as a throw-off phrase. It's just nice.

A wink from a crush-
A seriously solid wink from a seriously solid winker is unmatched. Even the art of winking without being a creep-o is amazing in itself.

Hotel Bibles (even better when stolen)-

Walking down the middle of an empty street-
Best when a one-way, brick road and walking against traffic.

Swallowing a bitter pill-
It sucks now, but it's gonna end up saving you.

Standing on an empty stage, facing an empty theatre-
indescribably powerful.

Losing a journal-
Just thinking about a stranger picking up your journal and reading something that you wouldn't usually tell even your best friends is so cool to me. I can't help but think the new owner would be able to learn something life-changing from reading it. It's like an book with one author and one reader.

Circling the answer to a math problem when the answer is "0"-
I have LOVED this ever since kindergarten because it looks like a Spaghetti-o. Profound, I know-probably the only positive experience I have gained from the subject of math--sans Mr. Wright's sixth period Algebra class, of course.

When it feels like it is raining harder when you are standing under a tree then out in the open because of the water dripping from the tree-

A bouquet of dandelions-
What jerk ever decided to classify dandelions as weeds? I love 'em!

Riding a swing at night-
It is one of the best feelings in the world to swing on a warm night and look up at the stars.

Porch swings-

Sending cookies to loved ones through the mail-

Eating groceries in the store before you have paid for them (but still paying for them!)-
I think my Aunt Anita is the first person I saw do this. It amazed me. I can't get enough of it. :)

Seeing or hearing the clunks of a train passing right by you, but hearing the whistle far in the distance.

And that's all for now.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Perfect Days

My best friend Emily is circumnavigating the globe on Semester at Sea. So far she has visited Hawaii, Japan, China and Vietnam. She still has India, Africa and Brazil to go. This was recently posted on her blog:

"I want to take Audrey to Yangshou, China. To rent bicycles and make peace signs at everyone we meet, eat snot pudding with dirt and it, and climb until our bodies hurt. Retire to a climbers cafe by evning to enjoy woodfired pizza and wine--- get up and do it all over again, every day. Learn more from each other...learn more from God---"

I am so fortunate to have a friend that knows me so well even when we are literally on opposite sides of the world. I would 100% trust Emily to plan a perfect day for me. In fact, it would look a lot like what she wrote above. She might have to explain the "snot pudding with dirt" bit... but I'm always up for an adventure. :)

--One warm, summer day in Bloomington, Emily and I decided we wanted an adventure. We drove through the Southern Indiana countryside in the Danger Ranger with the windows down, blaring Michael Jackson or something like that and ended up at Cedar Bluff Nature Preserve. (probably my favorite spot in Bloomington) There we hiked to the top of the 75-foot-high bluff nestled in the forest and sat on the space-like rock in the sun journaling and singing and praying and laughing and breathing deeeeeeeeply. :)
We then started home, avoiding the dozens of squirrels and bunnies playing in the road, but wound up at darling place called May's Greenhouse instead. We explored the exotic plants and stalked a couple old ladies, imagining them to be us in 50 years. We bought freshly popped popcorn for a quarter and local jelly (Fig-Raspberry-Orange-Ginger flavored) for some price grossly higher than it's worth.
After an hour of reeking garden havoc, we decided we should be getting home but got drawn in by a Nickel's Thrift Bakery along the road where bought HoHos, corn bread mix and those juice cartons that look like barrels--the ones parents would buy for my brothers' teeball teams. As we finally were about to make it home for real, Emily's friend called her looking for someone to photograph his band, to which I happily volunteered and stayed up late into the night taking photos of charismatic musicians.

A perfect day.

Perfect days are impulsive; perfect days are real; perfect days are spent with open minds and kindred spirits. Treasure the ones you have and always keep you schedule and heart open so you're ready when one comes your way.