Sunday, November 30, 2014

New News is Good News!

Hi, my friends!

I am so excited to announce that I am joining my dear friend Elizabeth on a new adventure over at Purpose over Pride.  I will still be renewing my commitment and passion for this little personal blog of mine, but I wanted to let everyone know about this news!  I won't put the full posts here, but I will give you a little teaser of my weekly posts with the link to read the full post at the bottom.  That being said, here is a little tidbit of my first post…

I’m going to be completely honest with you from the start…. I thought I had a bajillion ideas for this first post.  Yet, every time I sat down to look at the blank page (or blank space! Cue Taylor Swift in 3-2-1), I was suddenly aware of all other tasks that needed doing.  (Wait… I think I hear my dogs calling me for a dance party… Maybe I'll write later...)

Let’s face it, y'all.  There’s something incredibly daunting about every blank page.  Every fresh start.  Every new adventure. 

Why is that? 

To find out why I think blank pages are daunting, read here.  While you're at it, feel free to like our Facebook page so you can see when we update the blog!

I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving!


Sunday, November 23, 2014

Once upon a time...

...there was a girl who became very distracted by graduate school and life.  So distracted that she neglected to continue on one of her most beloved journeys… blogging.  Until one day when this girl realized that she really, REALLY missed her little blog.  She realized that updating this space not only helps keep her family and friends updated on her life, but also gives her a lovely writing outlet… which means, this blog is great self-care for her, and she hopes to begin writing frequently again…. The End.

Well, it's not really the end… because I AM BACK!!

Soooo much has happened in the last year and half that may or may not get a separate post… but I feel the need to have this "catch up" post.  Just in case anyone out there is reading this and is DYING to know what possibly could have happened in the last year and a half…  Here are the big things:

1) DARCY HAS A BROTHER!!!  Meet Sir Dashwood of Norland Bark, or Dash, a wild Wire Fox Terrier who bounces until he is ready to cuddle and then he gets up to bounce more.

He has been a unique adventure that has kept both Darcy and me immensely entertained… and busy.  He is about a year and half old now, but he is proving that he will most likely always have the spirit and playfulness of a much younger pup.

2) One of my favorite things that happened this past year was one of the most random and best decisions of my life.  I started and completed the writing program and Chicago's "The Second City" (where Tina Fey, Steve Carrell, etc. trained and performed).  This was such a beautiful adventure and honestly one of my favorite things that I've ever done.  It was also the most likely reason that I stopped writing in the blog (besides dissertation) because in doing the writing program, I had a unique opportunity to fulfill my need for creative writing.  It was glorious, despite missing my little blog.

Some of my writer friends after our shows

3) This basically goes with number 2… but I helped write and produce a show at The Second City, and it was scary and exciting and hysterical and many, many more things.  I am so grateful for all of the awesomely talented people I met through this process.

I was the "graphic designer" for our programs and posters
Performing the song I wrote! :)

4) I proposed my dissertation AND PASSED!  (Unfortunately, I still have to defend.  However, proposing is a huge step in the process!)

I had just found out I passed my dissertation proposal!

5) I applied to many internship sites as a part of my final year of classes for my doctorate, AND I was blessed to receive many interviews, too!  Which then meant that I got to travel all over the U.S. and meet new people and try to sound smart in interviews.

6) This is probably the biggest update of all…  I MATCHED TO A WONDERFUL SITE!  This process is the equivalent to the med school residency, and it is basically out of your hands once you rank sites and they rank you… until match day… at which point I found out that I matched at THE UNIVERSITY OF MAINE COUNSELING CENTER!!!!

7)  Well, if you have followed along this far, then you may have guessed that I am no longer in the Chicago area…. but I have moved to Maine for a year long internship!  It has been a wild ride so far, but I adore the people I work with… AND I am living in a part of the country I never imagined I would live in.

My second day on the job with fellow interns Nate and Gunnar!
My first lobster!
Sand Beach at Acadia National Park

That about sums up the biggest bits of news that I can think of… except for one more bit of news that I will share soon!  Until then, it is good to be back.

Long lost Miranda

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

When it rains, it floods...

When I first wrote this post (and apparently forgot to post it) it was the day of my first ever flood experience, April 18th... and looking back I'm shocked by 3 things: 1) WHY DID I NEVER POST THIS? 2) Why haven't I posted since Christmas?????? 3) A LOT has happened in the past few months.  

Now, I shall attempt to bounce back from my unintentional blogging hiatus.  And picking up where I left off with life for anyone remotely interested... here's an update:

* I went home for Christmas! I guess that's a given, though.

* My lovely Mama surprised sister and me with a trip to Disney World to bring in the New Year.  We had a blast, per usual... especially since all the Christmas decor was still going on.  Christmas AND Disney?  It's a dream come true!

The PQE, as we like to call it, is quite the process of essay writing and rewriting, critiquing yourself as a therapist, discovering your professional identity, etc... then answering questions about all the essays/identity confusion in a 2 hour oral exam with a committee of 2 professors.  It's quite the intimidating process, but a HUGE learning experience.  And despite my last minute identity crisis regarding my therapeutic theoretical orientation, I still managed to pass.  *sigh of relief*  I guess I know some things after all... whew.

* I spent my second Easter in a row with my beautiful Rabb family, whom I've adopted as my surrogate Wheaton family.  We planted jelly beans that turned into Tootsie pops, painted mugs, ate delicious food, and had some wonderful friend time.

* SCHOOL, SCHOOL, SCHOOL!  (This and PQE can be primarily to blame for the blogging hiatus) Now, as summer "break" has officially begun, I sadly have to focus much of my time on writing my dissertation... ick.

*Darcy has been enjoying some school of her own during her weekly Agility classes!  She's such a rock star.

Excuse the blur... she is just that fast!!

I'm seriously glad to be back, folks!  Hopefully, I can keep up with blogging again!  If I've learned anything from grad school it's this: when it rains, it really does pour... or flood.  (this is a metaphor describing the feelings of drowning in schoolwork, and now, dissertation...)  So when this post was originally titled as such, I guess it was referring to both the actual flood and the metaphorical flood of grad school.  However, I've also learned the importance of doing things I love to help me keep my head above water... whether that's spending time with people I love more than life, playing with Darcy, or writing in this blog. I intend to do a little more of all of these things I love to keep myself afloat going forward into the depths of dissertating!

Blessings and peace,

Monday, December 3, 2012

It's the most wonderful (and busy) time of the year!

It's here, folks!  Christmastime, that is.  
I love so much about this time of year... the Christmas spirit, the lights, decorations, music, and movies... and especially the time spent with family and celebrating the Advent season.  

However, as a 4th year doctoral student, this has also quickly become one of the craziest semesters of all... and now that Christmas is here, so is crunch time.  There are papers to write, dissertations to "dissertate," applications for internships to fill out, finals to study for, etc.  And it all happens during the merriest season of all.  

Suffice it to say, I have a lot of pictures and posts that will **hopefully** be coming soon, but in the meantime here are some phone and instagram pictures of my "Santa's Workshop" themed Christmas decor.  
(I will take some much better pictures soon.  Promise. Until then... back to paper writing!) 

Darcy uses the tree as one giant head scratcher...
What a face!
Santa's Workshop tree!!!
Merry Christmas! :)   

Friday, November 2, 2012

5 minute Friday... Roots

Again I am joining the lovely writing flash mob that happens every Friday over at Lisa-Jo's.  For 5 minutes, with no editing or over thinking, beautiful people write about a single word in whatever way they please.  And for this week, the word is...



I remember my small feet walking across the large roots of the big oak trees.  The knobby, thick roots seemed to shoot out from this larger than life tree.  My little hands would reach out and feel the bark, looking up into the branches, wide and strong, high and low. 

It seemed like nothing in the world could possibly move those trees.  It didn’t matter that they were hundreds of years old, witnesses of days, stories, and years lived and other little hands and feet climbing amongst the branches.  Their power and strength and bigness was firmly rooted. 

They were immovable.

I want a faith like that.  A life like that.  Rooted firmly in who I am and who God created me to be.  I want people to look at me and wonder what keeps me in that one place as I live my years and tell my story.


Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Halloween merriment!

While I don't particularly have fond feelings for Halloween (I don't hate it, but don't love it)... I do adore costumes.  
With my whole heart.  

So in the past few days, I have totally maximized the freedom of costume wearing that Halloween provides with.....

1.  A unicorn.  My dream come true.  
And I wore this costume while fulfilling another dream:  dancing in a flash mob to "Thriller," just like in "13 going on 30".... it was spectacular.  (I also got to have a sleepover with my new friend Tammy, who I adore.  We are so similar, we may have been separated at birth.)

2.  A hedgehog.  
It was pretty epic.
(And this was at a "Whirlyball" party for graduate psychology students... If you've never played Whirlyball before, it is a combo of bumper cars, lacrosse, and basketball... it's crazy, painful, and incredibly fun.  I still have bruises.)

Laura... my amazing hedgehog partner in crime.
One of my dearest friends in the world, Sarah.
Lovely Kate, a contestant on "The Price is Right"

3. Pavlov's dog.  
I wore this to school today because I'm a total psychology nerd... And if you know about Pavlov and his dogs, you will understand the importance of the bell.  

Of course, no Halloween is ever really complete without Darcy's epic unicorn costume... plus, I can't have ALL the costume fun...


Also, this is a gem from childhood.  Oh man, it's too funny....

Happy Halloween!!!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

5 minute Friday (on Thursday)... Voice

Every Friday, the lovely Lisa-Jo hosts "five minute Friday," a party where beautiful people come to bare their souls on the same word... with only five minutes to write.  No perfectionism is allowed; simply the freedom to write and to be...  It's unedited, imperfectly perfect goodness where community is encouraged.  I haven't joined this community in a while, but I'm linking up tonight... especially since the topic is so fitting to something that's been on my heart today.

The word this week is: 


Tonight’s the perfect time for me to write about this… my voice.  Today has been a struggle with feeling that my voice is completely lost.  I feel like I’m shouting on the inside, but on the outside, all anyone can hear is what the world is demanding to be heard.  I have a voice, yet it feels like its drowning in a sea of everyone else’s voices about what needs to be done with my life.  With my passions.  With my gifts. 

With my voice. 

My story is being written, but is my voice shining through?  Or other voices?

More importantly, is the One who writes my story shouting loudly with my life?

Because, that’s what I want more than anything.  But I feel vulnerable and confused when the desires of my heart, what feels like my true voice, can’t be utilized in my everyday life.  Over here there is a post today about what fires you up… and I think that is where we find our individual unique beautiful voices…. But the One who gave the voices composes the melody.  And sometimes, I fear that my true voice, the melody he gave me to sing, is not really being sung.


And my 5 minutes are up!

(Why don't you go read what some other folks are writing while your at it?  You won't regret it.)

Five Minute Friday