Monday, May 23, 2011

Tibet and Santah

Prayer is such an important part of life.  Tibetan prayer flags are often found in the countrysides of the Himalayas. The prayer flags are five colors and symbolize water, earth, fire, air, and sky.  They can blow in the wind to blow the prayers around the world.

Here is a website to make more homemade versions

Also Santah, the band that gave us a personal showing on the side of the road, is AWESOME!

Friday, May 13, 2011


Aveda tea (compliments of rumours salon)

Soothing herbal infusion of peppermint and licorice root, mmmm... did I really ask for three free refills while getting my hair done? I did not even realize!

A very simple craft


Buy some very inexpensive cork or coasters (try your local Ace Hardware!) and find some magazine pictures or computer printouts.  They can be themed or however you want! Just trace the coaster on the picture, cut it out, and MODGE PODGE. So easy and fun! They make great gifts!


Bountiful Bakin'

Some homemade cupcakes with some homemade chocolate frosting for little Miss Ann Flood (turning 9!)

Find recipes at:

YUM. Too bad I have to run twenty five laps around a track tonight.  I could've eaten the entire bowl.....shoot.

Julia Child Bread. SO GOOD. But also requires ridicuous things like letting it rise four times, taking 24 hours to make, quartering butter, and pouring water on the bottom of the oven (a new trick I learned to create steam for a crisper crust!)

Tediously Worth it Bread by Julia Child



Wednesday, May 11, 2011

"Being Normal is Another Way of Saying your not living up to your true potential"

True Life. Being normal sounds awful.  So today when I listened to rolling in the deep on repeat seven times while shouting it on my bike, I did not care when people stared. It was a beautiful night for a bike ride.

I also got to the bottom of my last homemade bread loaves so I wanted to do something special.  I found a recipe for Julia Child's wheat bread and could not live without attempting it.  It includes really unnecessary things like letting part of the recipe bubble and sit overnight, quartering the butter, and taking hours upon hours to let it rise in different stages.  I thought this sounded marvelous! What better way to spend a day than bake loaves of bread from JULIA CHILD?!?!?! 

I also read this verse today and loved it:

"Anyone who run ahead and does not continue in the teaching does not have God; whoever continues has the Father and the Son." -2 John 1:9

Lots and lots I try to run ahead in life and get so focused on the future that I do not live in the day by day and trust God with everything.  This was a nice reminder!

So here's the deal.

I have not blogged in quite some time.... but that's okay I think!

Since then some excitements have occurred!

On a very positive note I got a job (I think).  I am going in to "see if it works out" next week so I very much so hope it works out because it is at the Leaf Kitchen which is just simply the best place in the world. You can have tea parties there.

Right down the street is a wonderful hair salon called rumours.  I had a great hair stylist who took the pink out of my hair and she was just cool.  It took three hours and I never was unentertained.  She had Alice and Wonderland paintings tatooed on her arms and dread locks.  I kinda wanted to be her for a bit, but also was so thankful my hair is no longer bubblegum color (especially after Lady Gaga saw it and followed suit! sorry gaga...)

The most awesome thing: At the salon they offered me tea.  I kept trying to drink it as fast as possible without burning my tongue so I could have more.  It was the most wonderful tea ever. Shoulda figured Aveda knew how to do tea....

The library did me good:

You: Being Beautiful. The Owner's Manual to Inner and Outer Beauty. It looks so good! I am really interested in the part about inner beauty and spirituality, but I could always use some face treatment tips as well!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Some wonderful things

 When we went on a walk last night we met a baby calf who was sprinting through a neighborhood and we got to pet her!

This was wonderful.

Also on the walk I realized the saying "April showers bring May flowers" really is true.

This, too, was wonderful.

Lastly for a local foods project for my class I have to bring a local food to class.  I made BLT's using all Iowa ingredients. (Okay, the garlic aioli mayonnaise was made in France...) But I also made one for myself.

This.. too was very wonderful :)

God is so WONDERFUL!

Girl from the Drake Relays

I finished my leg of the race, bent over for a breather and then sprinted to the other side of the field just about as fast as my legs would carry me after running the first leg of the 4xmile relay.  This was a once a year occasion and I was not gonna miss out on any scream time for the next fifteen minutes while my teammates ran the other three legs.  A little girl approached me to say good job, and I quickly said thanks and shrugged off the congratulations.  There was no time for anything at the moment other than entire single-minded focus on yelling.  Three miles later our anchor leg crossed the line in second place and after all hugging we walked towards the gate with our heads down and hearts defeated.  We had done all we could do and still, for the second year in a row, it was only good enough for second place.

            As I walked by the two hundred mark the same girl came up to me again.  She asked if she could take her picture with me.  Flattered, I agreed.  Her mom told me she ran on the Excalibur track team.  It was the same track club I used to run for every summer before high school started.  I can still remember those workouts like they were yesterday. To this day I have never done anything harder than workout with Cortez Nichols.  The girl was not prideful.  She was quiet and so inspired.  She told me she got a picture with Jenny Barringer Simpson, Allen Web, and Lolo Jones.  I didn’t have the heart to tell her my name and autograph meant nothing in comparison to these Olympians, but I felt so special that I could be someone’s hero if only for a moment.   The girl did not brag or boast, but it was her mother who told me at age eleven she had already succeeded in winning the state Special Olympics meet in two events.  She had run a 1:17 in the 400 and 2:53 in the eight hundred.  I tried to portray to her how excellent this was.  These times were faster than most children her age who were born without any physical or mental limitations. 

            I feel terrible that I cannot even today remember her name, but I will always remember what she taught me. When I was too busy cheering to pay notice, she was patient.  When I was down after a near win, she persisted in showing love.  This eleven year old child was the most pure form of Christ and the gift of love she gave to me and specialness she allowed me to feel was unmatched by any running performance that weekend.  It was just a moment when everything clicked.  When running actually did have a purpose.  It was not about winning anything, or running a spectacular time, or impressing the crowd.  On a day when I had been questioning running for months beforehand, this girl gave me hope and such great joy.  With anything we do in life, if we can commit to it with full purpose and passion and allow God to reside within us, we will find hope and meaning.  If we can humbly accept that what we do is not about ourselves but about inspiring others and learning and striving to better yourself, then we may find meaning.  I guess it took an 11 year old girl to remind me of this, but to her I am every thankful.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

True Love

True love. It's not love at first sight. It's not holding hands or kissing or going out to dinner. It's not buying expensive gifts or getting married or anything like that.  I feel true love when others reach out to me and show me how wonderful they are.  I feel so in love when my dog wants to cuddle up next to me, or when God shows me a remarkable skyline, or when my 8 year old sister makes me a homemade wallet that looks so incredibly homemade. I just feel so fortunate to have other people in my life.  The joy and love that I feel and experience from others is so strong and so amazing.  After self diagnosing myself with SAD (seasonally affected depression) I was feeling so down prior to this weekend, but now I feel so content. Why? It's because of the TRUE LOVE that I have gotten from other people.

1) I got to read Julia's and Katherin's blogs.  Katherin's made me laugh really hard, and Julia's really inspired me.  I feel so happy that I can learn from others and the faith that people share.  It's funny how sometimes you count out the wisdom of people younger than you even when it can be so powerful if you let down your pride.

2) I got to go home to Des Moines for the Drake Relays.  It was so fun to get to see all my old coachs and friends.  I also really appreciate the hearts of all the girls I get to compete against.  EVERYONE is so kind and gentle and happy for each other.  I am constantly inspired by the other girls in my races, and so happy I get to make new friends.

3) I met a young girl after my race who took my picture and wanted my autograph! She was totally Christ for me.  She made me feel so good about myself when really she was entirely amazing.  She won the state special olympics meet in the 400 and the 800 and her times were actually faster than mine when I was that age!

I just think God is so cool.  I have really been asking him to show me the things I can give up to become closer to Him.  It has been a big struggle, and it can be really uncomfortable, but I think by realizing my attachments to things, wealth, anxiety, obsession, etc. I have been able to see how I can let God be God and also realize the things that truly bring me joy.  The only graspable joy on this Earth is the love received and the love given by others