Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

For the first Halloween in my life, I've been on the "giving" side of the candy.... and I love it!  Despite living in a city for 2 years, I've always been busy on Halloween night and haven't been able to participate in the trick-or-treating festivities.... and despite the 3 papers that are due tomorrow, Darcy and I couldn't resist passing out a little bit of candy!

Of course, Darcy had to wear my FAVORITE doggy costume... 
Who wouldn't love a pink unicorn with a princess in the saddle?!
She has to inspect the candy first...
Watching for trick-or-treaters = Darcy's mission for the night

Happy Halloween!!!
This picture is actually from last Halloween... but I just love it so much I had to post it!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Fall adventures... so far

I'm very grateful for the blessing of time with friends and family in the midst of my super busy semester.  Here are some photos (and semi-brief captions) of my Fall adventures so far.  
Enjoy! :)

A pumpkin carving night with sweet friends...

Can you guess which is mine?  

My first trip apple picking!  (Sadly, all the Honey Crisps were gone... and they are my favorite)

A brief trip home during my fall break to throw a lingerie shower for my Best Friend... I didn't have much time with my family, but on the way to the shower, my mom and sister stopped by the pumpkin patch with me.  We took a couple of photos with the sunflowers before I had to be on my way...
I missed going with the whole Rutherford clan, though!

 The lingerie shower!  
I made a sparkly bra for Best Friend to wear as the guest of honor.  :)

Precious high school friends were able to come to the shower, and it was SO fun to see them!

Oh, you know... just being a mechanic since my mom's car wouldn't start the morning after I spent the night with the bride-to-be... Us girls totally handled the situation, though... don't let the green and polka dotted pj's fool ya.  

A more traditional shower for the bride-to-be... and more special friend time!

My future brother... :)

A very, VERY quick trip to Birmingham with my sister... during which I was able to see a few of my most precious friends (the Beaty girls and "bffae" Amy!), along with another of my dearest friends Rachel. What a huge blessing to see her AND meet her less than 2 weeks old baby boy, Bear.  Such a treasured time!  And thank goodness I got to see the growing and beautiful big sister AnnaBelle, too!
(and I'm so glad my sister was on hand with her camera to capture these sweet moments)

All in all, Fall is turning out to be a special time with the ones I love most, near and far.

Happy Monday!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Country girl in the big city

For two years, I've lived in what I consider "the city."  This suburb of Chicago certainly feels that way to me after spending most of my life on a farm several miles from any semblance of "city life".... and I would hardly call my sweet little Mississippi town a city.  

For the first time in my two years here, I traveled to downtown Chicago and walked down its streets.... all. by. myself.   I know, I know... this shouldn't be such a big deal, especially since I have gone downtown many times.... But this time, I was alone.  (and I drove in the big city traffic... that really IS a big deal, right?)

 But as I stood feeling all alone and small, all the while surrounded by hundreds of people and larger than life buildings, I couldn't help but think about back to the little girl on the farm who always had big dreams to see the world, wanting to live grand adventures in big cities.

What would that little girl think if she saw me now?  Did she know back then that she would one day live far from the people and places she held most dear?  I know she had immense faith that her adventures would come sooner or later, and I hope to retain the faith of that long ago Miranda-child.  I think I felt like a child even more as I wandered through Millennium Park up to Michigan Avenue and hailed a cab.... the 24-year-old Miranda seeming far away as I tried to look confident and not so wide-eyed and giddy.

I will always dream of more adventures and travels to distant places, and I hope to live out those dreams.  Yet, here I am in the big city... and in my two years here, I realize that, while I love the adventure and I'm so grateful to be living it, I long for the quiet farm life.  And when people ask me where I will go after I'm a "doctor," I always get that dreamy look in my eyes... similar to when I was a little girl dreaming of big places... and I say something like, "Wherever God leads me... but I'm hoping to one day have a farm in the South with lots of trees, animals, and gardens." 
 *insert sigh of longing here*    

All that being said, I had such a blessed day downtown, where I met up with my "Little sister" from my fabulous sorority, Phi Mu.  Here we are the night that she found out that I was her "Big."  
(One of my favorite Phi Mu memories)


It was such a joy to see sweet Meghan after so many years... she transferred not long after becoming my "Little,"  and although we have not talked consistently over the years, seeing her again was just like picking up where we left off.  She is one of the most precious people in the world, and her family was just as wonderful!  I was greeted by hugs from everyone, and I felt even more like Meghan's "sister" than ever before.

And can I just say that I loved hearing her sweet mom tell Meg's fiance that we looked like real sisters.  I think so too... :)

Meghan and her fiance looking at "The Bean"...

I'm anticipating even more downtown adventures in my future, but I'm especially excited for my next reunion with my sweet little Meghan!