February 24, 2014

I don't mean to intrude...

I don't like talking about my faith.

Rather, I don't like feeling like I'm pushing my faith onto other people. The problem, is that despite the fact that I respect people's choices, and beliefs, and decisions, God, and His timeless promises have brought me through too much for me to not know beyond the shadow of a doubt that He is true, and His promises are true forever, and that He is the one person that we can constantly trust, and rely on, and cling to. In good times, bad times, stressful times.

It's like, I don't want you to think that I'm trying to choke you with what I believe, but I'm so overwhelmed by the reality of who God has proven Himself to be in my life that I can't NOT say anything.

I mean, I think back to 2011-2012, the worst year of my life, when things were literally crumbling around me. I had nothing to stand on. My life was nothing but torment and stress and depression, and yet the promises...I don't know how many times I had to tell myself that God doesn't give us more than we can handle. And how many times I held God to that, letting Him know very clearly that it was too much, and yet this inexplicable peace would be able to creep into my heart, and I'd be able to go on for another hour. Another day. I could walk through my house one more time.

The promise that if we have faith the size of a grain of a mustard seed - which, I'm convinced is not just a mustard seed, which is extremely small, but the grain of one...the singular part of the many parts that make up that one tiny seed...that much faith is enough for God. And for a long time, through a lot of situations, that's all I had. Almost no faith. Just a speck of it.

And now I'm on the other side of it saying without any doubt (for now, amiright?) that God is trustworthy, and faithful. I can't give any other answer anymore. My life has been a witness to ME of God proving to be true of His character.

So whenever someone has issues, or struggles, all I can think to say is, "BUT GOD HAS THE ANSWER." If you could only bring yourself to trust Him, just this once, you would see that He is faithful, and that He loves you more than you could ever fathom!

I'm not always in a position to share this with people, when I see their pain. God doesn't always make an opportunity for me to say anything. But it's there. It's there overflowing from the top of my heart, wishing that people could only just see.

That if people could only just stop where they are for one moment, and let go of themselves, and hold on to the truth that God gives...

But it's hard. It's hard to trust God when you don't first give yourself the chance to know Him.

I wish I could do it all. But I can't. Free will, man. It's a killer.

February 16, 2014


I am literally blown away.

Let's recap my life a little bit, okay? I had wanted to work for Starbucks for about 5-7 years before I finally got hired. About a month or so before I had the interview that sealed my fate with the company, I discovered the Barista Guild of America.

"Baristas have a guild?" Yeah, we do, so take that anyone who thinks that barista isn't even an official title.

So, I freaked out that this was a thing. There's certification classes you can take to be a CERTIFIED barista, and if I became certified, then Starbucks or any other coffee place would have no reason NOT to hire me, and how awesome would it be to know everything to know about this stuff?

Then I saw the prices. Cha. Ching.

Well...I'm sure that if I don't spend any money ever again, I could have enough for a plane ticket to Portland in five years...

So, that exciting dream and venture got set aside. And then, March comes around and I get offered a job on the spot at my store. Dream come true. Amazing, thrilling, and I have almost been there for a year. I love my job, and I'm still so thankful, and blessed, and honored to work there.

Then today came. I was watching a documentary about young kids becoming professional dancers. These kids and their families do whatever it takes for them to reach their goals and have their dreams come true. And I thought to myself about my barista aspirations...and I said to myself, I want to learn more. I want to do more. I am learning a lot at work, but there's more to learn that I can't really learn at work because of what I'm doing...my job. There isn't a lot of opportunity to stop and have the chance to learn the way that I want to. Not at the fault of the company, but it is a job. I have to work, I can't just sit around learning and practicing.

So I think to myself: There must be a place that has classes in Boston. I look, and I find one. It's fairly affordable, and mom encourages me to sign up. Then the question gets brought up about who is teaching the class, does it have any other benefits, etc...

So I come back, full circle, to the SCAA and the BGA. I find that there is a place in MA that is offering the ENTIRE level one certification program in April. There's a discount for members of the BArista Guild of America.

So I did it. I joined. I'm going to talk to my boss about finagling that weekend in April together, and Lord willing, I'm actually on my way to reaching levels of "barista life" that I only dreamed about.

I'm so excited. I'm shocked, amazed, and thrilled. I had a feeling that this year was going to be exciting - I can't wait to see what else the Lord has in store!

And now, please understand me. I'm not trying to say that God only has exciting, happy things in store for us. But I know that stuff like this doesn't just happen. I don't deserve this, but God knows the desires of out hearts, and He DOES get pleasure in blessing us. IT's important to still be thankful when things aren't going the way we want. But it's not wrong to get excitement out of the good that happens, either! :)

February 10, 2014


I received a turquoise ring in the mail today. I don't know how long I've had the desire, but for as long as I can remember I've wanted a turquoise ring. I recently determined that the reason I wanted a turquoise ring was because of "Little Women." In the book, scarlet fever comes into the March home and Amy, having not had the illness yet, is sent to her Aunt March's until it's safe for her to come home. While there, when asked what she would like to have of her Aunt's when her Aunt passes away, Amy says a turquoise ring and determines to be good enough to earn it.

(Sounds like all of my school reports, amiright?)

I think that's where the inspiration is from, which is appropriate because "Little Women" is probably my favorite book of all time. When I really think about it, no book has influenced and inspired me about love, independence, femininity, and passion more than that book. In fact, a friend and I are supposed to be reading it for our resurrected two-man book club, but I have yet to begin.

I had the chance to talk with a friend from college today. He wrote me on Facebook, and we wrote on and off throughout the afternoon. I love talking to him, and he's one of the few people (that aren't my really close girlfriends,) that I've actually reconnected to and caught up with periodically. Talking to him is always encouraging, so that was a nice way to start my week. So, shout out to Igor, because he might read this. :) *waves*

The past couple weeks have been really neat, when it comes to socializing. That sounds weird, but for someone who doesn't do much, it's been really nice. A group of people from work (and a couple spouses) went to see "The Monuments Men" last night. (Spoiler Alert: not worth watching in theatres. Wait until it's on Netflix.) It's just fun - between going out to dinner with people, hanging around after work, etc...it's a good time.

Work is going well. Sometimes, I get hit with waves of major insecurity that I'm not doing well enough to excel in the company. (Ugh, I sound like a such a boring business man!) After I've been stuck in the funk for a little while, I talk myself out of it by reminding myself that I'm there because I love what I'm doing, and that I'm happy where I am, and that I'm not AWFUL at my job. I also remind myself that it's good to push myself, and I just analyze where I am. I try to see where I can do better. I try to think, "If I had to run the store on my own, would I be able to do A, B, or C?" (Assuming that there are no customers, and disregarding shift supervisor duties.) It's pretty basic for the first half of the day, but once I hit late afternoon into the evening (until right before closing) I get mixed up on what to do, and when. This has been my issue for a while, but I'm trying really hard to pay attention when I close or pre-close to what those who are more versed in it all are doing.

So...I'm good, and I'm okay with being good, but I am trying to be better.

This past month, I've been doing the famous "30-day Shred." Tomorrow is my last day, (Shhhh, I missed ONE day. After so long of getting it done EVERY DAY, I did miss a day.) I don't feel very shredded, but I do know that physically I have reaped some rewards. I shot myself in the foot somewhere during level two when it came to eating, and neglecting my morning smoothies, which is why it wasn't more effective for me. But I own that, and I'm going to do it again, soon. I also pre-registered for a 5K in Haverhill this summer. That's pretty exciting. I did it on a whim (I mean, Haverhill is five seconds away...it'd be dumb to not try). I now have a goal for the Couch to 5K program that I didn't get to finish last Fall. So...fitness, overall doing well.

Love life...nothing going on there in the physical realm, but I'm believing God for some pretty crazy stuff.

I have gifts to mail people. Things that were going to be Christmas gifts, and then were going to be birthday gifts, and are now going to be "Just because you're awesome and deserve a gift" gifts. This goes out to Anna and Joanna. I'm sorry that I'm a terrible person.

Oh! So, my birthday is this Friday. I have the day off, and no plans. HOWEVER, the celebration has already begun because my friend Samantha made me gluten-free sugar cookies with a sugar silhouette of Benedict Cumberbatch. THEY ARE AMAZING AND DELICIOUS. I have one left. I saved the most perfect silhouette for last so that I could take a proper picture. She is literally so creative, it's ridiculous.

Lastly, everyone is getting married and/or pregnant. This is not a cry for pity from a single person, it's just a crazy fact! Both of my friends, Allix and Alex, are pregnant. I was in each of their weddings, as well. It's pretty much delightful and exciting.

That's all. Nothing special, just life.