Happy Sunday || Happy September 1st

Isn’t it interesting how when you seem to have more time, less gets done?  That seems to be the theme of my summer.  Sadly brilliance and bliss suffered due to this occurrence as it has been almost two months since I posted last.  Although it is still the season of summer (and our hot, humid Southern California weather would reinforce this technicality), my summer has since passed and with it the joys of having little to worry about.  I worked, I vacationed, I relaxed, I enjoyed.  Now I am a week back in school in the midst of juggling a couple jobs, tennis, a cold, and trying to get another internship where I have to fulfill volunteer hours for one of my six classes.  Whoever said college was the best time of your life?

None the less I thoroughly enjoyed my lazy summer and now am excited to begin my senior year of college!  Thus I share a quote I found on Pinterest not too long ago that will definitely be relevant throughout this busy semester.

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I have always had a thing for the 1st day of the month.  It’s another start, a fresh beginning, and … coincidentally my birthday (not too long away now!) falls on a first!  So here is to a new start on this first of the month, to living a life with reliance on Christ through my hectic schedule … and blogging just a bit more!

Happy Sunday.  Happy September 1st! xxo

Happy Independence Day

Roadtrippin’ // Day 1

“It is good to have an end journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.”

Ernest Hemingway

Well, we were supposed to leave at 4 AM, but instead in ever pleasing Penner fashion, a good five hours and seven minutes later, my family and I began the family vacation we have been planning for some time!  And so I say Happy 4th of July from somewhere in central California where it is currently 112 degrees outside as I write in the car at 3:45 PM (we have yet to reach our final destination for the day, thank goodness)!

Our trip could not have started off less picaresque.  Imagine an In-N-Out so crowded … you leave.  A Baja Fresh and similarly the Quiznos next store with odors less than appetizing.  Thus on to Plan D!  Before this afternoon I couldn’t remember the last time I ate McDonald’s, well … that is no longer the case.  To say the least, we will not be stopping in the town of Kettleman on our way back home.  It can only get better from here!

That’s the thing about vacations though.  Things don’t always happen as planned and yet you still manage to make the best memories.  The moments you live and work to repeat.  I hope you are celebrating our nation’s Independence with the people who matter most to you just as I am.  I wouldn’t have wanted to spend lunch any other way.  God Bless America!

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P.S. As we have now arrived at 5:30 PM to our hotel, I have internet to post!

Frustrated, not Flattered

I apologize for the ever long time that has passed since my last post.  For my loyal followers, especially Nat, who in her “sweet” way always seems to remind me of how I have failed to write, summer has started and with it, new opportunities have begun.  I am working.  I am relaxing.  I am preparing for a family road trip.  I hope your summer has begun just as well.

Summer has always seemed like a time for change, a time to accomplish the kinds of things you can’t with the anticipation of class the next morning, a paper due the following day, or pages to read of yet another textbook.  And yet when school begins to come back around in the fall, most of the time my list is never complete, and rather far from it.

“Patience is a virtue.”

Could there be a truer statement?

I can tend to be very … impatient.  I want things to be in place.  To make sense.  I want to know where I will end up, what I will accomplish, who I will be, and who I will share it with.  And yet at the end of the day, complications still continue.  Things don’t add up.  My prayers don’t seem to be answered.

I wish I could write of the incidents (some incredibly comical, others rather frustrating) that have happened over the past two or three weeks.  For now, I stay reserved though in fear the characters of those stories could happen to pass along this post.  And thus the only bit of information I will give is to discourage the male  population from grabbing a lady’s hand at a mall, introducing yourself, and not letting go.  This will indeed accomplish exactly the opposite what you intend and in my case, send her hurrying to buy a pretzel and leave the mall, no longer in the mood to shop, even if it was for shoes!

You see, things like this annoy me to no end.  My impatience to have the movie-style “happy ending” already steps in, to no longer deal with these events where I am put on the spot.

And so I share a little more about my aunt.  I have written about her before.  She is who I have dedicated this blog too.  She is my guardian angel.

Some of the last advice she gave me was when I was frustrated about yet another “something,” another minor and unimportant happening.  She told me in time it would all make sense but for now to continue to work hard and focus on what I was doing.  I couldn’t change the doings of others.  She told me … to be patient.

With this in mind, maybe things don’t need to make sense just yet.  Maybe the events that annoy me now only happen for the time being to be told as a humorous story, or used for a blog post for that matter.

I think back about summer, my time of change, to achieve the unachievable.  Maybe God’s whole goal in this time for me is to finally learn patience and what it represents.  And with this that list will eventually be accomplished.

And so I see why “patience IS a virtue.”  I encourage you today to wait on the Lord with a patient heart.  In time …

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(I realize the theme throughout this post has become a bit of a consistent idea throughout my posts …                                                it seems to be a dominant message in my life lately so I figure it deserves double the dosage!)

Blessings from a Blissful Boy

Whoever tailored the quote “ignorance is bliss” was on to something. Spot on rather.

This past week I babysat one of my most favorite people in the entire world. Jake is 25 months old and the brightest of toddlers. He is cheerful almost all the time, especially if cake or ice cream is involved, and his favorite companion is a stuffed bunny named EB. Jacob loves anything Disney especially visiting Mickey’s House (Disneyland). He finds joy in the simplest activities be it brushing his teeth or running in circles around the house. Simply stated, he is our continuous sunshine.

Now I consider the world around me. The hours spent studying to finish both my bachelors in a timely matter or working to please people at a minimum wage job. The frustrations over constant family issues or roommate conflicts. And thus a 19-year age gap becomes the difference between living in pure bliss and pure insanity causing the self-described “big boy” to teach me far greater lessons in life than those I try to teach him with learning his ABC’s.

Jake shows me what it means to love in all conditions. He speaks everything he knows. He explores and challenges himself daily by trying new things. Jacob makes me feel special. He wakes up overjoyed to just be able to play with toys and interact with people. Jake makes me forget about the various tasks to be accomplished and instead realize the beautiful blessing of life itself for Jake will one day understand this as well, as my first post titled Legacy was written about his mother. And so I continue to rely on Jake for the most brilliant life lessons.

Mark Twain wrote,

“The most interesting information comes from children, for they tell all they know and then stop.”

Love. Simplicity. Adventure. Happiness. Curiosity. This brilliant boy teaches me about all things blissful and blessed.

Perhaps “ignorance is bliss,” but Mark Twain was correct. Children show the beneficence of life. Jake does more than give me joy, he shows me how to experience such in all I do. And so maybe I have discovered why I want to be a part of a child’s life through teaching. Children cause me to see the good and true power of life. I hope to foster this beauty someday.

Consider the children in your life. Choose today to learn from them.

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To the boy who has taught me more in his short two years than thought possible, I will forever be thankful!

Have a beautiful weekend, xxo!

Dreamers & Doers

If you haven’t been able to tell already, I’m fairly family oriented.  Always have been.  This of course made moving out (a whole 45 minutes away from where I grew up) all the more difficult; a problem I have found most people my age don’t deal with to such an extent.  Even now I am still adjusting and find myself driving back home on random days just because.  And thus I would like to share a little about the two people in my life who have made my new surroundings my home away from home.

Jenna and Haley are my twin pillars (I am a good three or four inches shorter than both) for whom I am extremely grateful every day.  They have a genuine character and distinct class that radiates and betters all they interact with.  They are stronger than I will ever be and truly “dance” to their own beat.  They brighten a home filled with dirty dishes, blank walls, and mismatched furniture.  They love powerfully.  Jenna and Haley live with purpose so pure and true, a purpose that makes you know they will make it.

Grownups never tell you how hard being on your own will be.  As a kid it seems almost blissful.  Easy.  Fun.  And then you start making payments, start spending more time at jobs you wish didn’t consume your life, start spending money you don’t have, start seeing what it’s like to really be an adult.

Jenna and Haley make all this madness seem not so much easy but … definitely achievable.  They are hardworking and naturally driven, they make me want to accomplish far more than my spoiled self used to think about.  And so I share a quote by Eleanor Roosevelt.

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”

The future surely belongs to these babes.  But not only because they are dreamers, but because they are doers.  The future belongs to my roommates and all you others who share this devotion and determination towards what you believe in.

To Jenna and Haley I say, thank you for showing me what it means to have perseverance.  God has a deeply beautiful purpose for your lives that far surpasses even your best dreams.  We will make it together!

And congratulations to all the graduates of 2013!  I wish you only the best.

Do more than dream.  Believe in its beauty.  Put forth the effort.  Don’t just be a dreamer, be a doer!

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Thank you for bringing me home.   I am so proud of you both.  I love you, beauties, xxo!

Made All the Difference

Three years ago today I graduated from high school. I was beyond thrilled and relieved to be done. I was free.  I was proud.  I was accomplished. And yet that fall I started all over again. I began the college career that I still continue today (yes, once again I have the feeling it will go on continuously).

My college years had a bit of a rough start. I wasn’t at my dream school, I wasn’t out of the house, I wasn’t experiencing what at the time I felt like everyone else seemed to be enjoying.

Like numerous others, I started at a community college and to say the least, I hated it. I felt out of place and confused. I was an honors student. I studied to do well in my classes. And yet I ended up at a school that accepted everyone no matter the grades, no matter the awards.  I started my first semester telling myself it was only temporary, a small transition, in a couple years it would be all over.

And then I experienced two of the best years I have had yet.

I made the tennis team and I can honestly say my life changed forever.  And it was all because of the people.  I met people, kind and fun people.  We cared for one another, we shared most everything with one another, and we still love one another.  The people I experienced during my “transition time” made the difference.  They brought my life out of the depression I had started to dwell in.

Today, I have one more class to be attended tomorrow before I conclude my junior year of college.  I am no longer a community college student.  I do not attend the college I used to dream about.  I attend a school I didn’t even apply to during high school it was so far from what I had in mind.  I attend my mom’s Alma Mater, my dad’s enemy way back when.  And yet had I not gone to a community college first I would have never ended up here, living the life I am, and somehow knowing this is exactly God’s plan for me.

Sometimes we think we know what’s best.  Sometimes we think we have all the answers.  Sometimes we think we deserve it all.  And then we meet the people who show us that we don’t.  Who show us that we are the ones that are different, the ones that are a little weird.

Robert Frost wrote,

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I marked the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

I started college with every intention of having the worst of attitudes.  I didn’t give it a chance, I couldn’t see God’s greater plan.

Maybe today you find yourself in a completely different place you had once wanted to end up.  Maybe you just aren’t happy with where you are at.  I urge you to look past what is temporary, perhaps God has a great plan in store and where you are at is exactly where he needs you at the moment.

Community college was my road “less traveled” and now looking back I know it “made all the difference.”

I grew up.  I matured.  I met people different than what I was used too.  I became a stronger version of myself who learned her true value.  My community college experience happened exactly as it was supposed too.  And all I can say now is thank God (and yes, I do mean the Big Guy above) it did, because I would not be where I am today or even more, the person I am today without those two years.

Dare to venture the road less traveled.  Have confidence.  Stay strong.  It might make all the difference in the end.

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(Just a few of the people who “made all the difference.”)

Blessings

Welcome to the first installment of Breakfast at Bekah’s (as promised a short quote and interesting fact):

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So I’m an entertainment type of gal, one of those weird people who finds the celebrities lives interesting (it’s sad, I know).  With this in mind …

Interesting Fact:

One of the biggest blessings in life, if not the biggest, is a baby!  And some soon to be first time parents (and favorite celebrities of mine) are due in the next few months.  Here is what I found after much searching on the world wide web:

Channing Tatum (supposed to be my husband?) and Jenna Dewan-Tatum due: Late May, early June as speculated by wetpaint

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (I’m actually supposed to be Kate?) due: July 13 as reported by Mail Online

Josh Duhamel (also supposed to be married to me?) and Fergie due: Septemeber or October as predicted by wetpaint

Maybe new to you, or possibly old news … Have a blessed Monday!

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Breakfast at Bekah’s

My admiration for Audrey started when I thought she was Jennifer Love Hewitt.  It was the summer of 2006.  I had just graduated from junior high.  I was 14.  And I watched The Audrey Hepburn Story where Jennifer played Audrey and immediately I was hooked.  The rest of the summer I wore my hair with a bump on the top of my head and pigtails, Audrey’s signature look from my favorite film of hers.  If you haven’t figured it out yet, today’s movie is Breakfast at Tiffany’s, only one of the most brilliant movies.

Audrey was able to make even the role of a … we’ll say “society girl,” look classy.  She was light and carefree, eccentric and free-spirited.  She was distinctly divine in her own way.

As I can’t quite figure out my favorite scene of the movie (it’s a toss up between Paul and Holly’s date at Tiffany’s and the closing scene where she finds cat) I’ve decided to try out a new weekly post which will be titled something along the lines of Breakfast at Bekah’s and will hopefully take place every Monday.  It’s a process.

Breakfast has always been my favorite meal of the day.  All the bests … pancakes, omelets, COFFEE, donuts, newspaper.  With this in mind, Monday’s will begin the week with a short quote and current fact on entertainment, sports, or really anything that interests me.

There is a small part of Holly Golightly I can identify with … her ability to build walls.  Simply stated, she is too scared to let people in because she’s afraid … afraid of loving, afraid of being apart of something special.  I tend to do this often.  I don’t let people in too easily, I stay guarded, I keep the walls high, sometimes too high.  This blog is an attempt to not change so much but not be as afraid.

Thus with this in mind, I invite you to join me most Monday’s for Breakfast at Bekah’s.

Sea, Sand, and Soul

In exactly seven days, one week from today, the endless hours and time I have spent studying during this past year will all equate to letters on a piece of paper.  My junior year will be completed.  I will be a senior … and in college none the less.

And so with summer so terribly close and yet so horribly far away ( … finals next week, oh joy) at the same time I share a little about my favorite place, my perfect summer’s spot.

Simply, the sea … holds my soul.

There is a certain kind of brilliance, a certain kind of purity, and a certain kind of unjustified joy I receive when I see the sea along the horizon, when I step foot on sand.  It defines peace and love, hope for a better tomorrow, and perfect bliss.  It’s home and it’s happiness.  The smell, the sea, the sand… they go hand in hand with my soul.

Today in the midst of preparing for tests, memorizing lectures, and writing papers, I dream about the sea and sand, my perfect summer’s spot.  I am a true beach blonde.

Where is your perfect summer’s spot?  Find it and hold on to it.  Savor it long past these next coming months.  Do more than dream … starting next week I know I will!

“Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

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(My obsession started fairly young … and was not completely my doing!)

The Loveliest Lady

Happy Mother’s Day!  In honor of this special Sunday, I would like to share a little about the loveliest lady in my life.

My mother stands as one of my most brilliant blessings.  She has a genuine kind of class and character that shines for all to see.  She is funny and intelligent, curious and caring, and the kindest of people.  My mom is constantly striving to lead a life for Christ.  She has a faith that is powerful and yet she is beyond humble.  And so to the loveliest lady I share a verse that defines exactly you.

“She is clothed in strength and dignity and laughs without fear of the future.” Romans 31:25

Thank you for being the kind of role model every daughter needs.  I pray God’s continued grace on you.

And to all the other women on this fine Sunday morning, Happy Mother’s Day.  I wish you and yours a day filled with brilliance and bliss.

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(The writer, the sane sister, the spunky sister, & the loveliest lady of all)