Thursday, August 30, 2007

Women's World Cup Schedule

I know you were all concerned but the full schedule and TV schedule for the WWC has now been posted! Make sure you tune in or set your TiVo to watch the WNT take on the world and bring home the cup!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Phil. 4:8

Mindy and I my Sr. Year of High School

“Remember those who led you, who spoke the word of God to you; and considering the result of their conduct, imitate their faith.” Hebrews 13:1

Well today is the one the only Mindy’s 31st birthday. I told her last year that once she crossed into the 30’s this would be a hard time in our friendship thus we decided 31 was official 30’s giving us one more year to hang out so since this marks the end of an almost 11 year friendship I thought an ode to her would be fitting… obviously I am kidding. But on this glorious day of her birth I thought I would give a shout out to the most influential person in my Christian walk.

Not enough people in this world are blessed with someone like Mindy to pour into them, and that I feel is a tragedy. God knew I was a “special case”… ;) and thus He sent her to me my Junior year of high school at church camp. I could go on about just the way the Lord orchestrated it, and how He knew I needed someone in my life at that moment, and how He sent me someone who would not take the PC answer of “I’m Fine” or some watered down version of what was really bothering me. That’s one of the best qualities of Mindy she does not let me just skate by what’s bothering me, or not give her the full truth of what I am struggling with. She will sit there until I let it all out and then tell me the practical things I need to do to get through it or wipe it out in my life.

But I digress… she has lived a life where she has walked strongly with the Lord all of her life, not that she does not struggle but she has a pretty amazing track record in my eyes. She is bold enough to call me out on the junk in my life, and loving enough to let me just vent about silly things in my life. She has taken more than the required hours of her life to pour into me and help develop me into the Christian I am today. As I said I have known her since I was a junior and therefore she has been putting up with my “drama” for a while. All with a smile and a beautiful heart of service. She takes my phone calls at all hours, and talks me down from any thing I see as out of control. And reminds me of the important things in life. Through all the years she has not lost sight of me and has kept me close which is something I am truly blessed through.

She has a spirit that totally trusts the Lord no questions asked, and she selflessly serves people around her like no other. Even as she raises three beautiful children, she still pours into girls in her local church. While she was sick and in the hospital during her last pregnancy she was reaching out to the women there, and the women who contacted her to pray for her, she actively sought out how she could pray for them. I daily pray I could have more of her heart of service to others. She has a passion and conviction to walk strong with the Lord no matter what the sacrifice is, and she never sees the worldly things she gives up as a sacrifice but as a blessing to not struggle with. Its that passion and acceptance that draws folks to her, and that the Lord uses to pour into so many others. I knew over 10 years ago when I saw her at church camp there was something different about that counselor. I observed her all week long and knew that if I was going to be a Christian I wanted to look like she did. While I obviously strive to look more like Jesus everyday, I truly believe He gave me an earthly example to mimic in Mindy. And as I get older and begin to mature in my faith I think I may look more and more like her and then I look and she has grown even more. And she is so humble about it, she is the perfect example of a Paul’s spiritual leadership of follow me as I follow Jesus.

I could go on and on truly and pray that every person could have a Mindy in their life. Someone who pushes them constantly to look more and more like Jesus, but at the same time are loving enough to help us up after we fall, or protect us when we are hurt. I thank my Lord every day as I remember Mindy. And today on the day of her birth I am extra thankful.

Love you Mindy and pray that this day blesses you ten-fold of the blessing you have not only been to me but so many.

Mindy and I last year in DC

Monday, August 27, 2007

Women's World Cup!

Get excited people because the Women’s World Cup is just around the corner! I have watched the Women’s National Team long before it became popular in 1999 with the famous Brandi shirt incident. This year there were plans to attend the World cup in China with my long time soccer friend Jennifer… now she has decided to go and be an adult and buy a house and thus $ for a plane ticket, hotel and game tickets are not easy to come by… so I will watch this World Cup from the comfy of my home. It is rumored to be Kristine Lilly’s last World Cup and so I wanted to be there to see her win her maybe last… but she has got a lot of spunk in her and I am sure (really praying) we will see a lot more games from this player.

Last fall the WNT came to Richmond, VA and I was faced with my first chance to see them play in person. My Mom and my Sister were gracious enough to help out and get me a seat on the field to see the game. I purchased another ticket and my good friend Kate and I drove south to see the team. Kate was a trooper... the whole way she was calming me down as I was so excited to see them play in person and have the chance to finally meet a player I had admired since I was 14. I am sure having kate tell the story of our trip may be a bit more funny because she had to deal with me. My prayer team rallied for me and began praying even before I had the tickets and when the team first took the field who would walk right in front of me… But non other than Kristine Lilly! It was AWESOME! I totally believe God cares about even the small things in our life and He knew that I would totally die over that when most of the world may not even know if they were holding a conversation with her. Kate and I had made a sign that stated “We Love Lilly” and proudly displayed it at the end of the game praying she would walk over to our side to sign autographs… and who did she walk up to first… you guessed it non other than Me!!!! It was awesome!

Well all of this to say I hope that you will get a little World cup fever this September and cheer The Greatest Team You Never Heard Of (side note this team has not lost a game in almost two years!) on to claim yet another World Cup Title. They are currently ranked #1 and I am sure they will not disappoint! They have a blog up and going to keep you up to date on all things WNT and you can also check out Kristine Lilly’s page and her personal journal entries at the bottom of her page. I included some pics below of our adventure last year to Richmond.
Kristine Lilly and I
Kate and I showing off our Great Seats!!!

Kate, Me, and Kristine

Aly Wagner and I

Me, Kate Markgraf, and Kate

Me and Leslie Osborne

Monday, August 20, 2007

Their Back...

It’s my favorite time of year… really always has been all my life. It’s the return back to school. Now do not hear me wrong in this when I was in school I did not like the return to classes and home work and such… I loved seeing friends I had not seen all summer. I am a hugger and I love that first hug when you see someone you have not seen in a while. (aside note this is why I love flying so much… because there is that great feeling when you come through the door and the person you came to visit is there waiting for a big hug.) I love reunions. Thus I love the start of the school year.

This Friday marked the first day students were allowed to move back into the dorms, and they kept coming all weekend long. I was able to see so many faces I loved and had missed all summer. And I loved the fact that this year we are starting The Gathering with a new vision. One that turns everything over to the students to run. We as volunteers will just be mentoring and discipling them in their walks with the Lord and their own path to spiritual leadership. So this weekend I was able to watch them take their first steps in doing it all their own, as they served their fellow classmates in helping them move in. I took a few pictures and took the girls out to lunch, but other than that it was all them.

I am excited for the semester ahead of us, and the hearts of service and the passion for the Lord that is rising up in this generation of students. And this group on American University’s campus. Pray for us as we embark in bringing the name of Jesus to this campus and this city. I can not tell express in words what it is like to watch these students serve their campus and each other. It is a humbling position the Lord has allowed me to stand in and be a part of. And I am so excited about what He has in store for us this fall semester! Praise the Lord for His provisions!

Early Mornin Move-In Crew

Candace Helping Out

Travis and Brian flirting with cheerleaders instead of movin... ;)

Everyone Attacking One Car

Julie, Sarah, Cinnamon, and Candace at Church

Me and Some of the Girls at Church!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Back in Texas

My Grandparents have just celebrated 50 years together and all of their immediate family kids, grand-kids and great grand-kids gathered together to surprise them for a little family retreat in Flint, Texas. I was blessed in my good friend Heather offering to pick me up when I flew into Dallas. She was just about to the airport when she stopped for gas and her car would not start again! After much struggle she called me and I took a cab from the airport to the gas station. We awoke her brother from one of his last summer sleep in days to cross town and pick us up. After the tow truck showed up four hours later we headed off. Now do not be discouraged as if you have ever had the chance to hang out in small spaces with the Chapman’s it is never a let down! We did have a lot of fun waiting and rushing. We then met my two friend BK and Ashley for a quick bite at Panera and a chance to catch up with both gals. Then it was on the road again to meet my rents who were then driving out to Flint.

Sadly I did not get to bask in all the greatness of the resort we were at, as the heat and the traveling was pretty tiring on me after surgery. So much of my time was spent in doors and such. But it was still a great time with all my family. It was the first time since I was in high school that every member of the family was able to be there at the same time. There was A LOT of good food to be eaten, and a lot of fun conversation to be had. You know how crazy families can get, well mine is from New Orleans so we are just a tad crazier! And loud I might add. When my Step-Dad was driving me back to the airport there was a moment when we both realized it was unusually quiet almost eerie after all that chattering.

My Grandparents are great they have built a wonderful family and taught us the value of our loved ones. They have endured a lot to be where they are today and worked hard to ensure their children had more then them and our parents worked hard to ensure we had more than they did and now my siblings are working hard to ensure their children have more. I just love my siblings, we are all so different but that is what makes us great. We ban together and I know I always have them to count on. I could not ask for a better pair of sisters and a brother. So here are some fun pics of the trip…
Ash, BK, and Me

Me, Jordan and Heather fun in the Car!

My Grandparents! 50 Years!

The Shirts Grayson Made for the occasion

Grandparents and their Grand-kids

Grandparents and their Great-Grand-kids

My neice Sabrina the Diva

My Brother and I

Our Fam (minus kids.... hey who is watching the kids?)

Cousins Rockin the 50 Year Shirts!

Sabrina and her new Cinderella Doll to play with!

Savannah Excited about her new doll!

Papa Showing Victoria how to braid the dolls head... this was too cute to not get a picture!

This was great Savannah came in the room and said "Daddy! Puppy!" and Bear just dropped immediately and she climbed on her puppy!

Monday, August 13, 2007

Random Facts

SO KC tagged me a while back and then Whit and Betsy just recently to know 8 random facts about me. Sorry it has taken me so long, I have been a bit crazy but non-the-less to help fill that stalker instinct in all of you and since obviously my fans demand it here we go…

The Rules:

1. I have to post these rules before I give you the facts.

2. Each player starts with eight random facts/habits about themselves.

3. People who are tagged need to write their own blog (about their eight things) and post these rules.

4. At the end of your blog, choose eight people to get tagged and list their names.

5. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged, and to read your blog.

Now the moment you've all been waiting for...My eight random facts and/or habits:

1) This is new but weird the water cooler in our office is actually boiling right now people! Weird I know. The hot spicit instead of just heating water that comes out of it is currently heating the entire bottle and the water inside is actually boiling in the large bottle so much so it is shaking the bottle… have we unplugged it NO! We are waiting to see if it will pop the bottle off… ;)

2) I LOVE Slurpees in the Summer! Something about that ice cold frothy beverage just sends me into a earthly heaven. I enjoy the Coke flavor the most but will settle for the Cherry if Coke is not available. Then I like to get a Taquito (Monterey Chicken to be exact) I know people never thought someone actually bought food off that roller but this girl does. It reminds me of the beach and the ocean. After early morning swims or swims anytime breakfast/lunch is usually a Slurpee, Taquito and pending on how much of a water work out I got… a bag of Salsa Verde Doritos which are also my fav! Ah Miami will be there in just a few weeks!

3) I LOVE the beach… I know it’s not random but still after that last post I am just thinking of the beach. With my Dad still in Florida this is a good thing for me because I go at least twice a year. For Christmas (because White Christmas is ALL about White Sand and NOT snow!) and then usually in August with friends. A trip to Key West is taken at least once a year, and that island never gets old to me! If I could pick a vacation spot I am ALWAYS hands down the beach! But I actually love less crowded beaches or the beaches in the very early morn… Running on the beach, because it gives my calves the best work out EVER! And just laying on the beach. I will always choose beach over lake, but I still love the lake as well… okay I am addicted to water!

4) My friend Yale calls me MP3 Player… many people take this the wrong way but I actually enjoy it… its my first good nickname other than my last name… which does rock but this one is pretty original. So for short I sign out my e-mails to Yale and that group of friends usually as MP3!

5) I have never been stung by a Bee! And I plan to keep it that way!

6) I am also addicted to collared shirts… for all you who wonder why I wear them so often… A girl once told me one day when I walked in with a collared shirt, that I looked great I said thanks, she then said “the collar makes your neck look thinner”! WHAT I was in high school people I had a thin neck, but now the girl in me is always conscience about how my neck looks… thus collared shirts.

7) I am right handed in everything I do… except eating. My Mom thinks its survival of the fittest because at home growing up my brother sat to my right and would often spread out when he ate and would eat off my plate. So block with the right eat with the left.

8) I once talked to Tom Cruise on the phone! I was in the 4th Grade and living in California, my BFF at the time, Dad is a big time Hollywood financial guy and Tom called their house to talk to him. I answered and had my few glorious moments with the old Hot Tom! Ah… Later in life I actually got to see him in person but that was crazy Tom so not as fun.

So that’s it… Now I tag Amanda, Maggie, Whit, Steph, Ashley, Martha, Emily and Anitra!