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Preview: Brand New Day

Brand New Day

He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose. [Jim Elliot]

Updated: 2014-08-31T23:31:26.394-04:00




You knew it was coming.

I can hardly keep up with one blog, let alone two. So this one will stay in existence, but I'm going to only be posting on my website with my man. In a week from this moment I'll be rehearsing for our wedding. NUTS. In one week and one day I'll be a married woman.

Yay :)

So... it's been lovely, but from now on, check out:



Hey all! I just (finally) updated on the Jas and Tam blog, so go check it out here.



I nearly forgot- the pic above is totally one I took up here at the lake awhile back. So sweet :)

We're halfway there-- livin' on a prayer


[Livin' On A Prayer, Bon Jovi]

That's how I feel right now- the feet and back are spasming, my head is pounding from forgetting to drink water all day, and I am about to pass out.




But praise God that this is, God willing, the last time I'll have to pack alone, and hopefully the last move for the next 5 years or so... by the next move, if all goes according to plan, Jas and I will be moving into a house that we will live. In. Until. We. Die.

The end.

As for the new look... if you know me you know I like change. I think this suits me better :)

I better go do a little update on the Love Blog so as to not alienate those that keep in touch only via that medium.

Band Love!


I KNEW The Fray were awesome!

Sweet The Fray Article

These faces and these places are getting old...


... I'm going home

[Home, Daughtry]

I know it's one of the biggest songs in the country and has been for weeks, but this song just really struck me deeply today.

I was packing and came across a bunch of photo albums. I couldn't help but flip through each one, and basically they chronicle everything since I graduated from high school. I graduated exactly 7 years ago last Saturday... that's amazing, right? I can hardly believe how much I have grown and changed in those 7 years, and how many amazing people I have met. All of my best friends, save for two (mad love to you, Clinton and Darla!), are people who have become woven into the fabric of my life post-high school. Which is, I think, fairly common.

Another random happenstance of the day (though I actually think it was ordained) was that I recalled a song from my high school days called Westside by TQ. The basic point is that he loves the west coast, and he says, "West side til I die". So I was already on this west coast love roll, then I saw pics from my life pre-North Carolina, then I saw a paper from Institute (the TFA training that I did in Houston the summer before I began teaching in NC) that I drew all over and decorated all up while doodling that says, "West side til I die". Strangely enough, I haven't thought of that song probably since I created the paper two years ago, yet today in school I recall the song, download it from iTunes, and then come home and get nostalgic while packing and then see that paper.

Then, of course, I was really feeling the pull to the west coast, to Jason, to marriage, to the next phase of my life which will be completely distinguished and different from the last... I was seeing the faces of people I love and miss so much in photo after photo... and this song, Home, came on.

That's my favorite thing about music-- it speaks to every person where they are no matter how different their situation is from the next person. For me, home means I am drawn back to a region of the United States, more specifically, the Pacific Northwest. I never knew exactly how much I loved Washington state until I left it. Of course, I'm becoming a west sider (I always lived in the eastern half of the state) and Jason is a pretty huge draw, but I realized that while it's a bit emotional to say good-bye to my beloved roomies (I'll see Becca and hopefully Elise in September... who knows when I'll see Liz again, if ever, which is sad) and it will be REALLY hard to say good-bye to my kids (I tear up just typing it, no kidding)... the truth is that these faces and these places are getting old.

I'm ready to go home.

I'm going home
To the place where I belong
Where your love has always been enough for me
Not running from
No, I think you got me all wrong-
I don't regret this life I chose for me
But these places and these faces are getting old
I'm going home

I'm going home.

Awesome Songs!


I nearly forgot--

If you're a ROCK STAR and you use iTunes then check out this sweet iMix I made!

Tim Henderson Mix

My heart will choose to say...


... Lord, blessed be Your name[Blessed Be Your Name, Tree 63]So today I checked in on the blog of a friend who was in Europe lately, and there were some sound clips of a wedding that he sang in. The songs were in French, and I realized that singing along in English to a worship song (they were Blessed Be Your Name and Lord, You Have My Heart) being sung in another language, French in this case, is one of the most incredibly amazing feelings in the world.I can't really explain it-- worshiping God in song is my most treasured form of worship, and singing a song of praise in my heart language as others praised Him in their foreign tongue simultaneously just took it to another level. That was just over a fairly low-quality clip online!In other news, I think my blog is in need of more pictures. Everyone loves a good picture, right?Here are some of my favorite things :)Being in my fiance's armsPics where Jas looks ridiculous- ha ha!Pictures of cities at night; I took this one of Charlotte after leaving a Bobcats game (they won!)My ring and my Red Sox sweatshirt :)Being Ridiculous :)Making really crazy faces for the cameraOk, I REALLY love making nutso faces for the camera... never leave yours unattended.For real.Beautiful sunsetsI'll give you one guess :)Being silly with my kids :)Young childrenMy kids :)Friday night lights :) I'll really miss keeping statsThe randomosity that is Warren CountyInside joke, but when my kids are funny (and watch Jeopardy!)The natural beauty where I liveOur glorious lake house :)MikoSweet pics ;)Being Ms. TKMy adorable roomies (I don't have any pics of Elise :( )Hurricane Days! One word: ERRRRRRRNESTO!!Crazy times with Liz :)My hair when it's long :)The randomosity that is my house... we didn't choose the decorations on the book shelf, PSFunny biznessRoot beer mystery taste testsMy baby... even if the sun & wind were in his eyes and he's squinting :)[...]

Girl America's dying... don't stop believing, my Girl America


[Girl America, Mat Kearney]I'm totally starting to get into this fitness thing.Do you ever apply limits and labels to yourself and believe them so fiercely that you simply couldn't imagine them not being a part of your life? Do you ever let them begin to define you, even if they're negative?I've always been overweight. Even as an elementary school child I was the cute, mildly plump one. It got to be a little bit more and more by high school, and by the time I graduated I was 220 pounds, and about a size 18. Then, in college, it got worse. By the end of my junior year I was 290. I went to China for a summer and came back at 260. I could fit into a 22, the first time in years. I spent most of college a solid 24. Slowly I gained the China weight back, and then some. By the time I left for TFA I was 330, a solid 26. Then, two winters ago (so 2005-2006, my first year in TFA) I got up to about 360. That's my estimate... the only comfortable pants were a 28. By last fall I was down to 320 (I'm honestly not sure how I lost it... I didn't even really try, to be truthful. It just slipped off.). With some serious effort I got down to about 310 by January of this year. Then I gained some back, and at my last doctor appointment I was 323. I realized I had to get serious. I mean, I want to have babies with Jason. First of all, the rate of miscarriages in women with a BMI over 25 increases sharply. My BMI at 323 would be a50.6. Ouch. We don't plan on children for about 3 years, but still. I'm blessed that I don't have any real complications yet. My cholesterol is normal, blood pressure in healthy limits, etc. But I hate being the fattest person on the plane, in the restaurant, in the room, in the building. Still... I often cling to my identity as the fat girl. I mean, you'd think I'd hate it- and I do- but a painful truth hit me recently:I can't imagine a fit Tami.I just can't. I can't see myself as one of those people who snacks on raw veggies and works out because it feels good. I can see myself gorging on 12 Oreos and a half a gallon of milk and ordering enough fast food for two people. You know what's sad? I've only bought Oreos maybe twice in the last year, and I honestly eat fast food maybe 1-2 times a month. I actually probably eat raw veggies and work out more than either of those things. Yet I define myself as the "fat girl".It's easy in some ways to be her. I could always blame problems on her. When I had unrequited love spells, I could blame it on being too fat. If people rejected me I could always assume they just couldn't get close to me because of my stature. I accepted being friendliest and having the best laugh in high school because of course I'd never be most attractive. I overcompensated with personality, clinging to it as needing to be overly funny and fun because I hated fat people more than anyone, so why should people love me unless I was so lovable that they- and I- had no choice but to overlook the obesity that was me.So... I have had to wrestle this demon, recently. The one that rejects God's truths (My body is a temple... Eat, drink, whatver I do, do it as unto the Lord... don't gorge on anything other than God's Holy Spirit (and His Word)... love myself... I am a beautiful daughter of the King... on and on...) and instead clings to lies about my unworthiness and definition being the uncontrolled, unhealthy habits formed in eating over the last 20 years. Funny how the demon is far harder to deal with than the actual sinful acts. I can eat 1,500 calories in a day, work out like a fiend, and consciously surrender my desires to binge (and, sadly, I won't deny having purged- aka vomiting- in the past) and still feel like I'll always just be the fat girl.God simply won't let me rest. He won't let me feel sorry for myself. He urges me onto health, to Himself. Go[...]

Don't you know it's violation?


[All These Lives, Daughtry]

I am sick. Sick. Sick. SICK!

I hate colds.

Do you ever do that thing where, when you're stuffed up and miserable, you swear you'll never again take breathing normally for granted? And then two days after you're back to normal you forget the misery that is having a cold?

I sure do.

I'm in the midst of feeling sorry for myself because I have a cold mode. But the good news is that, after a near week hiatus, we finally have hot water again. Praise the LORD! We went without the entire weekend- the long weekend, with guests and lots of swimming. Ugh.

I'm about to pass out, now- I only got about 3 hours of sleep last night.

Stupid cold.

PS Only 8 more days of school; 4 of them are half-days with testing, and I already wrote my final, my study guide, and end-of-year survey AND copied them! It's smooth sailing from here on- mostly just test prep/review and tying up loose ends. Yippeeeeeeee!!

PPS Today my assistant principal told me that I'm a "really good teacher" and to let her know if I ever need a recommendation.


Word of God speak


[Word of God Speak, Mercy Me]

Tonight I heard a fresh word from the Lord. A rhema-- His specific word, meant to speak life into me exactly where I am at this very moment.

It's rather incredible how God's Word truly is alive, living and active even, cutting through to the heart of me. I've read I Peter dozens of times, but tonight it was real, brilliant, and cut through me like a laser, slicing through the lies that have formed the foggy, muddled mass surrounding my heart.

I am so blessed to be reminded that Jesus Christ knows and understands exactly what I am going through right now. He lived it 2,000 years ago in His tenure on this earth, and words written by the apostle Peter nearly 2,000 years ago are every bit as powerful and meaningful to me now as they were to the people he penned them for then.

Praise God for that! I will cling to Him. I pray I will remain open and receptive to whatever He asks of me with no hesitation and no second guessing nor questioning.

I belong to God. I have been purchased with the blood of Jesus Christ, whom I have proclaimed as my Savior.

I am not my own.

It's about time I get back to living like it.


I won $20 in poker tonight.

The best part is that I totally ran four guys off the table. At least 2 of them are pretty experienced and played almost weekly last year. And I totally took 'em all down on only my third time ever playing. My second time I split the pot with a guy though I was winning because I was sick of playing.

I think I like Texas Hold 'Em. Though, honestly, I'd like it better were I not playing for money. But $5 is no biggie, and I won $20. Ch-ching! I'm thinking Jas and I need to make fun friends and have poker night with like pennies or something once we're married.

Today was good times all around- I got flowers today (I didn't expect them, but all things considered, the boy needed to remind me of how much he loves me... he put me through a lot this week), stayed home from school, worked out HARD (I will be SO SORE tomorrow, but that's aight), dropped my cell phone in a glass of water but miraculously it still works, took care of more moving logistics (insurance stuffs), bonded with Liz and Elise for a bit, then the three of us went to the boys' house and that was super fun. It included night swimming (though no skinny dipping, sadly), fun people, tasty treats, discovering how comfy Peter's bed is (he was in it- but so were 3 other people. We sort of woke him up by all getting in it with him), and then, of course, the poker victory.

Suffice it to say I'm out of my funk. So that's the best part :)

So stop your tears and listen


[The Heart of Life, John Mayer]

Do you ever feel just really inexplicably sad?

Emotions have run torrents through me today.

The lamest reason deals with stuff that doesn't really matter... as in Blake got completely raped on American Idol tonight. Seriously, come ON- I know Clive Davis is a sappy song kind of guy- A Moment Like This, Inside Your Heaven, Do I Make You Proud, etc., but seriously- could the winning song have been anymore pushing of the same type of singer that wins every year- the balladeer (or balladette, as the case may be). I mean, I like Jordin. She'll do fine in the biz. But I LOVE Blake- he's absolutely refreshingly original and he's exciting to watch. There are fifty Jordin Sparks' on the radio right now- many of them who can sing better; she's good, but she's no Christina Aguilera or Kelly Clarkson or even Carrie Underwood- and there is no one like Blake.

That said... since Blake is clearly going to lose, at least that cheesy balls song won't be his first single. I don't care if Seattleites wrote it. It's CHEESY BALLS.


There's other stuff, but lately I find myself turning into a more private person. Normally I'm just all out there- I wanted to start off by pointing out that my period started today even though my boobs haven't hurt at ALL when usually they ache for a week and a half so when they started hurting today I was ready to expect my period in a week and then voila! there it was and it caught me totally off guard (despite my moods clearly signaling PMS all week) but then decided that maybe the world doesn't want to know that. So I... uh... didn't talk about it...


The point is that there is just stuff. And it sucks. And I'm trying to not feel sorry for myself.

I also find myself increasingly emotional about leaving this place. I love my roommates- well, 3 of them- and my house, I like my job, and I absolutely love my kids. At least once a day for the last month a student has said, in one form or another, that they can't believe I won't be here next year and that it sucks. I'm not sure they'll miss me nearly as much as I'll miss them.

I could barely type that last sentence. Tears are streaming down my face and my throat is so tight that I can barely breathe and the air is forcing itself into my lungs in ragged bursts upon each inhale.

On the upside I had to force myself to eat something tonight so I could get over the 1,000 calories mark. It's really unhealthy to eat under 1,200 calories a day (the metabolism actually slows down) and I clocked in at 1295 only because my stomach was screaming at me despite mentally having no appetite. Which never happens for me. I wish I could never eat again. So I guess that's something. Plus I came home craving exercise. That has literally NEVER happened. So maybe I'll get less fat.

I realized tonight, while watching skinny little bikini models on an Old Navy commercial, that I'm not sure which I hate more-- the fact that they look like that, or myself for not looking even remotely like that.

So... yeah. I guess I'll sleep now.

Would you change?


[Change, Tracy Chapman]

This is such a good question... really, when you come face to face with something that needs to change, will you do it? Will I?

What does it take? When there is an area of my life, for example, that is out of line with God's will, will I change it or will I make excuses and numb myself and keep on with it?

Two things come to mind. One is a really frustrating relationship. Honestly, it's relationship I would rather not have. The person has really betrayed trust in a lot of ways, so I have gone through the gamut... anger. Bitterness. Trying to pretend she doesn't exist. Trying to figure out a way to address the problem without hurting other people we both are also close to. I've even tried to pray it through, to trust God and let it go. None of these helped; the last did for a little while, but then there was a new offense and rather than cling to the Truth of God's Word about forgiveness and focusing on Him I went back to my sinful response of self-protection and bitterness.

So I know the Truth. Live unto God, be Christ and treat others as I would treat Christ. Will I change?

Also, for my entire life overeating has been a sin I cling to. I eat out of boredom. Out of habit. Out of addiction. It's sin. I try on my own power to get it under control, but I fail. I've failed time after time after time. I believe that this is just the way I am, obese. Big. Large. However you put it- harsh or gentle, I lack the belief that I could be anything more... well, or less, as the case may be. I try to reform myself, but I always fail. This is because only God can transform.

I cannot serve both God and my addiction to food. So often, food wins. God is to be my only master. Will I change?

Today, I choose to make the change. I'll keep you up to date on my progress.

She's in love with the boy


[some country song by some country artist. Meh.]I love Jason.In other news, I also love American Idol. I think I might be PMS'ing early, because I cry at everything. At the senior awards ceremony yesterday (where all the seniors' scholarships are announced- remember, I teach high school) a girl got a Gates Millennium scholarship which will pay UNLIMITED monies for ALL expenses all the way through a doctorate degree for her. Could you imagine that? What a blessing. She's in the extremely impoverished local Native American tribe, and it's just incredible. So, though I was sitting amongst the most insolent, selfish, and rude section of juniors in the gym (I was the only teacher with the bal... gumption... to do so), I cried with tears streaming down my cheeks. Good reason, but still.Then, I almost lost it today when I reprimanded my US History class. Yesterday they all decided that instead of doing 20 minutes- TWENTY minutes!- of reading together in small groups to prep for the rest of the lesson they would just put their heads down and sleep. Now, that ceremony yesterday completely threw the ENTIRE schedule of school off, I had zero planning, had to constantly discipline those afore-mentioned juniors as I watched my babies (my first classes last year were all juniors then, and almost all of them are graduating now) get college scholarships, lost 40 minutes of third period, and then had about an 8 minute lunch. Needless to say, I was already pissy. So by the time it came to be fourth period- my last class of the day- I was testy. When they put their heads down while reading I was downright angry.See, I was sitting there reading stories about people like Emmett Till, a beautiful 14-year-old boy who was murdered- horrifyingly so- simply because he whistled at a white woman, and he happened to be black. One the two white men who killed him was the woman's husband, and after getting freed by an all-white, all-male jury (twice, no less) the man said something to the effect of killing the boy was his only choice because he couldn't let no [sic] black boy think he was as good as any white man. The poor kid was from Chicago, visiting relatives in Mississippi and simply didn't understand the way the world worked for blacks in the South in the 1950's.I read about a man in the military whose wife and child almost died in childbirth, so he rode a bus home to the South from his northern station at a military base to see them, and was sleeping... a white police officer got on, woke the man up (he was black), took him outside, and shot him in the heart, killing him. Reports showed that the white officer basically thought the man was a Freedom Rider- he just wanted to see his family, and they had to live the rest of their years with their father and husband dead. There are countless stories of people- black and white alike- who gave their lives in the Civil Rights movement. People died so my students could have a chance at trying to attain equality. And to see my students decide they wanted to sleep because it was the last period of the day and my room was warmer than usual (not my fault- my school's HVAC system SUCKS)... well, I was so angry I couldn't speak to them. I couldn't even talk to them, not at all. I just put in a video about the movement, handed out their work and tried to make it through until 3:00 without losing it.Today, though, they heard from me. They heard my heart. I told them the truth- that for two hours, I saw them and their peers jeer and sneer at Seniors getting scholarships and getting the chance at a better life. They laughed, text messaged on cell phones, hit each other, everything, and couldn't keep it together f[...]

Feelin' like this is perfect-o


[Hips Don't Lie, Shakira]

Yesterday was good times.

I know I haven't written for like 86 years. Muh-bad.

So back to about yesterday... it was the End of Year celebration for TFA. It was fun... pretty sentimental, actually. I can't believe how quickly two years of my life have flown by. It's interesting because in college there are so many transitions and it goes by quickly yet you see all the different phases of things you did in college- for me, my college years were full of the different roommates, and the new places around the country and world I visited, the classes that changed me, etc.

TFA has been so different in that it's been filled with so much... sameness. Get up, teach, come home, hang with the roommates, work, eat, sometimes work out, sleep, start over the next day. The weekends are filled with work, catching up on sleep, more hanging with the roommates, sometimes going out to dinner or over to the boys' house... just enjoying lake life on the LKG. And yet it's just gone by so quickly somehow, all the memories just blending into each other as one big strung out lump of living.

Last night was a chance to celebrate our two years of service and hard work, and one last hurrah to say our peace before we spread out and scatter across the nation. There were some speeches, dinner at the Sheraton, and a slide show. Oh, and a huge ol' certificate. I just can't believe I committed two years of my life- actually, it's almost 800; I just figured it out- and I'm 32 days away from the end. Wow.

After, we went out for a gal's bachelorette party. The dancing was REALLY fun. I got really sweaty because it was hot and crowded, but it was an awesome workout :)

So... yeah... life is good, last night was fun, and I'm a lil sleepy from being up until almost 4 am after the dance-a-lance-ing. Now I'm chilling with the beloved roomies, Joanna's here too, and we're just enjoying Sunday.


Consider This, Please


For about a year I have been sponsoring a child through a program called International Children's Network. My child is named Isaac and he's from Uganda. ICN has done an excellent job of making sure I am able to stay in touch with him- I get a letter just about every 3 months, and I write him as often. Also, I have sent money for the purchase of items to help him a few times, and ICN is good about sending me pictures of him with his gifts to ensure that I know he is being provided for.

The best part about ICN is that they are all about trying to connect sponsors with their children in person. Eventually I (along with my by-then-husband, Jason) plan to go to Uganda and spend time with Isaac in person, serving in his community.

ICN is intentionally not a Christian organization by name, because if they were they're ability to minister in certain areas would be extremely limited. The wonderful aspect here, however, is that Isaac continually writes to me about what he's learning via church and God's Word, and about his desires to be either a pastor or a doctor (to be fair, he's 12- he doesn't have to decide yet!). I know for a fact that ICN brings hope to children in places such as Africa, India, and Peru not just via monetary gifts, but through the Hope that is Jesus Christ Himself.

Speaking of money, I am most blessed to be able to say with confidence that ICN is trustworthy pertaining to how they handle money. They are committed to ensuring that no less than 93% of all moneys go straight to the children and they don't allow any more than absolutely necessary to get sucked up by overhead costs. You can check the page on their website (and their 2005 tax return) here:

Lastly, I know the founders personally. I have known them for nearly ten years, and they are extremely committed Christians who love the Lord and are sincere about ensuring their lives are all about ministry.

So, pray about it. No one asked me to do this, I was just thinking about how much I love Isaac, and I was looking at the ICN website and saw all of those children waiting for sponsors... please, consider whether or not you might be one of those people. It's $30 a month, and so many of these children can't go to school otherwise. Many don't have access to clean water or food otherwise. In Uganda, a large number of these beautiful children have been orphaned by AIDS and war, and I again strongly urge you to consider whether or not you might be one whom the Lord would have support one of these children-- I am blessed to know that I will be involved in Isaac's life through when he goes to university, an opportunity he would never have without ICN and my support at hardly a dollar a day!



My subject line means nothing, really.

I'm in Durham for a TF@ thing. It's cool :)

Not a lot to say, actually. I could tell stories about horrific events from the administration at school, but... nah. Just know that life is good, I love Jason, and I'm moving to Washington in 47 days.

And I'm eating dinner at Red Robin in about an hour. SWEET!!

Happy Saturday!

PS-- Yay for NFL draft weekend!

Two Things:


1. Stay With You has an update :)2. Please go sign this: is a horribly non-Christian group called Westboro Baptist Church who, basically, believes that there are a few elect to be saved (these being the only ones Christ died for) and that everyone else is damned and that their job is to preach the wrath and damnation of God. This means that they believe God hates America and He is pouring His wrath out via natural disasters, events like 9/11, the deaths of those in the Iraq war, and most recently, the Virginia Tech tragedy.Their message is of hate, and they go to the funerals of people killed in Iraq (and now they plan to attend funerals of those killed at VT), shouting their venemous messages. They're the infamous "God Hates Fags" people. They shout things like, "Your [son] was evil and god is bringing his [intentionally not capitalized because the god they worship is not the One True and Living God] wrath upon heathens like your evil son!". They basically scream and chant and hold up signs as grieving families try to reconcile their loss.The worst part is, I have been reading about some of the people killed, and praise God that some of them were clearly born again, and are in heaven! But these WBC people would say that even those are not of the elect and don't know the "true god".They're horrifyingly despicable and this petition is in the good faith effort to try to get a grassroots movement to stop these people. I'm sorry, but if this is what free speech allows then I think there is a time to put the muzzle on these people. They are hateful and seek to inflict pain. That is NOT free speech in the least.Please, I urge you to take 60 seconds to sign the petition. You don't have to donate when it asks, just sign the petition and help honor the memory of so many bright, young, talented, and wonderful individuals whose families don't need more pain and suffering.Oh, and you can read more about the horrifying WBC here if you want more info than just my word: just exhort you to not actually visit their hateful websites because they get money everytime someone visits. Probably ad software or whatever. But I saw the main woman (Shirley Roper Phelps or something like that) on a news show once and she is serious about this evil business. So sad. But Christ is bigger than His adversaries, and we can all make a difference by trying to help.To anyone this applies to, please know that this is a VERY extreme, and extremely wrong, tiny sect- cult, to be honest- who claims to be Christian but clearly is wrong. They take scripture out of context, and entirely misinterpret sections. They're actually primarily composed of a single family, the Phelps', and they in no way represent what Bible-believing (and adhering!) Christians believe. Also, they put a foul stain on the name Baptist, but know that they by no means represent Baptists.Some Facebook groups are organizing marches where people will go stand silently between the WBC people and the funeral procession, to create a buffer. There is also the Patriot Guard, bikers who go around to the funerals of Iraqi soldiers that the WBC intends to terrorize, and does the same thing. Praise God- the REAL GOD- for that![...]

Heads up!


Just so you all know, there's a blog now dedicated to all things specifically Jason and Tami (but I'll still post on here, too, just, you know, at the same dismal frequency that I have been as of late... though hopefully at least 1-2 times a week!).

Anyway, check out the Jason and Tami blog here:

It isn't too hard to see...


... we're in heaven... [Heaven, Bryan Adams]

Jason's here.

We're engaged!

The ring is gorgeous, he's wonderful, we're having an amazing time, and when he leaves Friday I'll feel an incredibly huge void in my life, replete with tears, so there will be time for updating you all on the week. I just have to say that I love and adore him, God is incredible, and I have the ring of the world's most amazing man is on my finger!

We're about to leave for Charlotte to go see the Bobcats play (aka ADAM MORRISON!!) and then we're off bright and early to go to Asheville tomorrow, so like I said-- much more to come on like Friday :)

I love you all!

I know the heart of life is good


[Heart of Life, John Mayer]How's about a List Monday for a change? :)One of my best friends is pregnant! I'm not sure how far she's spread the news, so I'm not saying names yet, but it totally makes me basically an aunt! Yay!I did some shopping this weekend with my rock star roomie, Becca... we purchased materials for Save the Date cards and I got some (much needed) new clothes (some shirts and a pair of bermuda shorts as well as a pair around clam-digger length- SO CUTE!!). Shopping is fun but expensive. Yay for sales though! I got a load o' sexy clothes for my man for just under a hundred bucks! Yay for sales, I say (again, of course). I only need to make it through this week, then next week there's no school Monday (teacher workday... but I have loads o' comp time to use for those!) and then 1pm dismissal (aka two hours early) on Thursday and Friday. Ode. To. JOY!!The week after next has an early dismissal Friday (1pm again), and then... SPRING BREAK! Oh, beloved week off in April, how I do adore thee...This Friday my other wonderfully beloved is making a rather large purchase... which he'll then put into use likely as soon as he gets here on Wednesday, April 4! I can't wait! To see him, to have his ring on my finger, to know that we're truly embarking on the journey toward marriage... *sigh* I love him so much. Let's be honest... I am absolutely in love with Jason :) He's my favorite. He gets his own whole section of gushing now :) We're in such a good place now- we can have rough days where the conversations (we talk at least twice every day) are kind of awkward.... or super awkward... seriously, I verge on- albeit unintentionally- becoming a completely different person when I am on PMS. It's rather lame, to be quite honest. And we're relatively certain he has a hormonal time of the month where he's more irritable than normal too... and these times tend to coincide which SUCKS! Anyway, we can have a rough day or week but then eventually we are able to talk it out and always we get right- both with God and with one another. I just love him so much... not a day goes by that I don't take a step back and think, "God, how did I ever come to have a man this wonderful in my life?"My favorite things about Jason deserve their own mini-list, so here are some random ones that come to mind:He makes me laugh... we had the funniest conversation the other night about... well... poop. We were on the phone, I said I'd be right back, came back like 5 minutes later and admitted that I had needed to go numero dos but was too embarrassed to admit it. One of the funniest convos we've ever had as a couple ensued. It was rather hilarious.We're just so beautifully in harmony on issues of doctrine and living out our faith in our every day life. He's seriously my perfect match in that sense. We're on the same note in certain areas where we need to be (primarily doctrinal, some political and the like) and then we harmonize and balance one another out in other areas. It's beautiful, to be perfectly honest.He's so thoughtful and sweet. He thinks I'm the most beautiful woman in the world and never fails to tell me so. He loves me deeply and always wants to ensure that there is never even a shred of doubt in my mind about how tangible and meaningful his feelings are for me.He's a hard worker. He works two full time jobs. Literally, the man works like 80 hours a week, never complains, and does it with a sense of urgency to financially make it possible for[...]

We've got to carry each other


[One, Mary J Blige, featuring U2]I know you all probably think I'm dead. At least that I don't love you anymore...Neither is true. As usual, I've just been mega busy. Currently on the list of To Do's (it's capitalized because To Do lists dominate my life) is... planning a wedding. Barring any act of God to the contrary, Jason is proposing when he comes to see me in April. I'm not sure how or when, but I pray it's soon after his arrival because I can't wait to have his ring on my finger, officially showing that I am his, and his alone. He is my beloved, and I am his.Ok, 'nuff gushing. One serious thing to tackle... I don't have loads o' time to do it, but I do want to address my beliefs in response to some recent replies to my blog posts (ok, let's be honest... to say "recent" is a DIRTY LIE. I haven't written since before the millennium, or so it seems).I believe that God's Word is absolute Truth. The entire thing. Many people get mixed messages about the verity of God's Word, but I believe that God's Word itself addresses the idea that the Bible is partial-truth intermingled with fallacies and the opinions of man. This may take a moment, but read the entire chapter of II Timothy 3 below; if you're not feeling reading the entire thing, at least pay attention to the parts I make bold. 1But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. 2For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, 4treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these. 6For among them are those who enter into households and captivate weak women weighed down with sins, led on by various impulses, 7always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. 8Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so these men also oppose the truth, men of depraved mind, rejected in regard to the faith. 9But they will not make further progress; for their folly will be obvious to all, just as Jannes's and Jambres's folly was also. 10Now you followed my teaching, conduct, purpose, faith, patience, love, perseverance, 11persecutions, and sufferings, such as happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium and at Lystra; what persecutions I endured, and out of them all the Lord rescued me! 12Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. 13But evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. 14You, however, continue in the things you have learned and become convinced of, knowing from whom you have learned them, 15and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 16All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work. For me, it's simple: God inspired all scripture, yes. Not just gave a magic touch to some man to write it, but actually breathed His Word through the human man sitting down to write it. Over the years the Bible has been translated time and time again, but I believe that the same God who could split the Red Sea in two, and who could walk on[...]

Stand Up


Ok, you have to go read this. DO IT.Chris Broussard's Response to the Amaechi / NBA stuffsI replied with the following:Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU. I hold the same standards as you. The Bible- God's inerrant and Holy Word- is the plumb line for me, the standard which determines my choices as well as my moral values. Many call it antiquated and "mistranslated", as you said, and tell me that they respect my choices, though I can see they clearly think I am either sadly misled and naive or simply wrong. It kills me that, in our society, I feel like free speech is open to pretty much anyone except those like me, with my values. I truly appreciate your honesty- that you would treat any homosexual man as a human and a friend, with respect, and that you might be a little uncomfortable being around him naked but that you would give him benefit of the doubt and so long as he didn't make a pass at you (ergo respecting your boundaries) then you wouldn't freak out about it and would eventually not worry about the shower situation. I value you saying this because so many like us (dare I lump you and I together, being that we have a similar belief system) are immediately labeled as hateful bigots when we call homosexuality sin. Yet Christians living as Jesus called us to should love people- even homosexuals, despite the fact that, for a plethora of reasons, homosexuality tends to make most people more uncomfortable than other sins. You showed the way we should be- cliche as it is, you "love the sinner and hate the sin". You also aren't afraid to call it sin- many Christians don't get this. Either they are hateful and allow ignorance to be their compass or they just cop-out and say, "God is love and so you can do whatever you want to do and He'll still love you." God is love. He came to earth in bodily form, lived every day of His 33 year life for our sake, and then died a humiliating and excruciatingly painful (physically and emotionally) death on a cross. That's love. Love is getting over your own discomfort to be a friend to someone whose life choices aren't in line with your own and shining for Christ. Love is speaking the truth while balancing it out with grace. Love endures and takes the risk- as you have- of being ripped to shreds by those who tout liberty and free speech yet seek to silence those who stand for Truth. Thank you, Mr. Broussard, for speaking the truth in love. I teach History in a low-income, primarily Black, rural high school where ignorance feeds hate toward homosexuals. Every day I seek to stand for love, living out the Truth I believe- that no matter what choice someone makes, no matter how uncomfortable it makes me, I need to love that person while being unafraid to stick to my beliefs. I stand and walk according to my beliefs, and when necessary I speak the words necessary to back up my actions. Thank you, Mr. Broussard, for standing with me and being that beacon which my students so desperately need to shine into their lives. I can't wait to use your article as our next opinions literacy-workshop piece.*** So what do you all think? I'd love to hear your feedback about this stuff.[...]

Ok, seriously...


I fell asleep with my eyes open.

I didn't know that was possible.

I was working (on stuff for U$ Hi$tory stuff, what else?) and I was staring at my laptop screen and then I suddenly did that thing where you like shiver/shake awake. I realized I had essentially fallen asleep with my eyes open.