Saturday, June 29, 2013

Friendships Count

                                                                            from here

I am thankful to be in Athens.

I had not thought, that simple thought in weeks.

I had thought of moving to the bright lights of Atlanta. I had pondered work, weddings, and life.

But, this past week I made a move across town. And it was not simple, because I have a lot of stuff for a single girl in her 20's. And in spite of the hurdles, I had even more help than I needed for my move!

Both friends from church and school, helped me make the move. And I am just so humbly grateful. I know I could not have done the move alone. And my sister is planning a wedding, and my parents are at an out of town funeral. And it was going to be up to me, to get this move done.

Friends poured into my home and gave their time and strength. It is truly such a God given blessing to have these kind people in my life. Sometimes, I might wonder about life here. But, the answer always come back clear as crystal. Sabrina, you are supposed to be here. Relax.

There is a unique community that I call mine here in this town. And I already knew many things about them, but now I know that these friends from all walks of life are trustworthy. And that is important, when you are living away from your family. May I in some small way, find ways to be there for them, just as they have been there for me.

* I didn't do a huge FB post, but obviously this all means that I am staying in Athens for another year. It will be a year of thinking, working, growing, laughing, and being open to discovering more of why I am here. If you read this often, then you know that my job has its own type of special stress. Be praying. I and my entire school and school community can use any and all prayers for help, guidance, wisdom, and favor.*

Friday, June 21, 2013

Friday Tunes- Imagine Dragons

Everytime I hear this song, I just can't sit still!
Happy Friday:)

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Waiting- A Seasonal Tale

 I am in the season of my life that is exemplified by waiting.
Outside it looks and feels like a beautiful and blooming Spring.

But, personally, the season is Waiting. And it has lasted longer than I had imagined. But then again, waiting always does.

I am better prepared for it this time around. I have been growing in peace. It is been my goal since the start of 2013. And that helps with the wait. Also, truly trusting my life to God, makes the wait less scary. The scariest thing would be to try to do all of "this" alone or guided by the supreme will of Sabrina. But, I have already learned that lesson and been burned. I pray I don't need to learn it again.

Just like in each real season, we see changes and often need a new wardrobe.....I can apply that to this time of waiting.

During the season of Waiting, you often get excited about phone calls from unknown numbers ( 2nd interview maybe??)
During the season of Waiting, you need to get your rest. It is tiring to be in limbo. And I for one can get cranky, if I don't let my body rest.
During the season on Waiting, you have to be mindful of envy. It always seems like the season of waiting always catches you, when others are in the season of stability.
During the season of Waiting you need your family and friends. You need people to ground you, before you get too focused on the inside and the teeny, tiny details that can drive you nuts, but actually don't mean very much.

*Update, my BIG wait is over. It was not the answer I wanted, but I do believe it was what was needed. We shall see.* 

Friday, June 14, 2013

Friday Tunes

I don't even care if this song dates me, but as soon as it came on, I remembered almost every word.
HAPPY Friday:)

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

10 year high school reunion: My Impressions

Who was Sabrina at 18?
Smart, thoughtful, shy, sarcastic, friendly, and ambitious.

Who is Sabrina at 28?
Bright, hard-working, creative, energetic, quirky/funny, and a dreamer.

There is nothing like going back to your old stomping grounds for a reunion. And I was so lucky to get to spend a whole weekend with people who knew me "back then". I look back at this weekend and I still smile because I had a blast at my 10 year high school reunion!!

Everyone does not have a high school class that still gets together, everyone does not even want to see the people that they graduated with years ago.

But, that was not me. While high school was not the best years of my life, they were good times with good people. And seeing some of those people after 10 years was funny, interesting, and quite an experience.

I loved my 10 year high school reunion weekend. Friday rolled in with a rooftop Happy Hour at the downtown library. I was dressed to the nines, if I may say so myself (see above)! I battled down a few intense butterflies in my stomach as I parked my car. But then I looked at my reflection in the car mirror and saw just how MUCH has changed in 10 years, and I was ready to go.

I spent the evening smiling and really listening to the stories of the grown ups, who used to be kids, that I knew. Of course we are still people, groups formed, but in general, at least for me, I was armed with a smile and ready to meet people again. No shame in not really remembering every single person who I graduated with. Also, it was good to see a mix of friends, acquaintances, fresh faces, and even an old crush or two. I am happy to report that many people agreed that my chosen profession was a "good fit" for me; the person I was then and the woman I am today.


Saturday brought the most memories. Back to Stanton we went. Walking the halls and seeing the place where you spent a large chuck of your life, well it had my mind in a sort of time-warp. Just being there made me think of things I had not remembered in ages. Like sneaking a cinnamon roll into the library for "lunch" as I finished a project. And then stealthily eating it pinch by pinch (thank goodness those times are over!). A delicious bar-b-que and a scavenger hunt full of memories made my afternoon. I went cute, casual as you can see above. I even found my old locker (I think...).

There was still one more event to go before the weekend was a wrap. This time was the formal dinner at the University Club, overlooking Jacksonville. It was beautiful and I felt beautiful. Thank You Melanie, for the most fabulous dress! It was an evening that made me look around and really see, that Yep, we are grown-ups. Memories were shared as we watched our old class of "2003" DVD. The dinner was delicious and the friendships and conversations brightened my evening.

I could never thank the planning committee enough for all of their hard work and vision and dedication. Because of this weekend, I happily look forward to our 20 year reunion.

I don't even know what to hope for in these next 10 years. I guess I will share a prayer, 2 hopes, and a dream.
 I pray I still will be living a growing, faithful and obedient life in Christ.
 I hope that I have found the community where I will be settled. And I would like a family of my own, or at least a husband. Or to be a traveling/foodie!
And I dream that I would be working or maybe owning a bakery.

*Oh, one last note. Almost everyone I talked to decided that 10 years goes by so fast. And we realized that at 18 we wanted to have it all together by now.....but most of us don't, and that is OK. We are still working on it. It was nice to hear that idea affirmed by my peers over and over again.*

Friday, June 7, 2013

Endless Energy and Excitement

Let me just jump right in!
It is a current busy, busy season in this here life. And I am thankful it coincides with my summer vacation from work.

My mama asked me if I planned to grab any little side jobs this summer. I literally gasped, Ummmm mama have you not heard about the last year of work? I won't be officially working until August!

All of this recovery time and all of this rejuvenation is filled with a swirling mass of life events, and I am so dang blasted EXCITED I could probably go spinning off into space:)

Of course my girl is getting married in December. I will be her maid of honor! It's a pretty sweet feeling. The family Stewart is full steam ahead with planning, prepping, and prayer. That same mama, said a beautiful prayer as we ladies found our way to wedding dress fittings yesterday. Thank You God, first of all, before all of the things that you have done. We praise you, for giving us a life that really matters. Amen to that.

Then there is my well-planned and sure to be entertaining and fun class reunion. 10 years since my class of 2003 graduated and went their own ways. Of course with Facebook, I know of some of the surface level things, but it will be grand to get to see old friends and meet new ones. With 10 years under our belts, I'm just interested in the people that we have become, and what we are all hoping for in the next 10 years. The planning committee gets tons of praise because their level of organization was amazing. I've never heard of a reunion, that was so well organized!

Also, one of my oldest, friends asked me to be a bridesmaid in her upcoming wedding! I was so honored that she asked me and thrilled that a friendship started in the pangs of sometimes awkward middle school, has grown and thrived over the years and distance. So, in two weeks, this girl who has never been in a wedding, has been asked to be in 2! Oh life, life.

The weekend is here everyone:) A tropical storm soaked the roads as we traveled yesterday, but this morning the sun was so gorgeous and bright. 2 days, 2 different types of weather. And if I look back, I had my own personal storm of life. But as promised the sun is shining through. And I have this feeling that it's gonna take that rain and grow the most amazing life experiences! And I'm ready for that:)

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Farther Along

"Farther along we’ll know more about it,
Farther along we’ll understand why;
Cheer up, my brother, live in the sunshine,
We’ll understand it all by and by."

One of my favorite spiritual songs is Farther Along. But I must admit I love so many songs because I resonate with them at certain times in my life. And praising God in song, for me brings a lot of joy! However, Farther Along has stood the test of time and it's just a good and beautiful song.

I had some difficult news to process last week. And, in my sadness I almost jumped on here and wrote of my mighty and overwhelming feelings. But, thankfully wisdom and some advice I have given others, slowed my steps. I have always cautioned others to be extra careful when posting or writing or saying anything when you are at an extreme emotional high or low. So, I listened to myself and wrote some thoughts in my regular journal.

But, it has been a few cleansing days since the sad news, and I'm in a better state of mind. Honestly, God helped me get in a better state the very next morning. And I am thankful.I could not have done it alone. And he sent wisdom and loving words and reminders through his people. Praise him! He also sent me some work to do. So I really had to tell myself to "suck it up girlie!".

Every single line of the chorus above, could describe this time in my life. Right now I am not sure why I have been called to stay. But, I am being obedient to a will much greater than my own. And it has not been easy. I am weak and selfish and flawed, yet trying.

My tears flowed freely for an evening. But the time of "cheering up" has come. I am SO blessed. With life and strength and family and love and talents. I gave myself an evening to mourn the passing of some dreams. And when the sun rose the next day, I tried to not look back. I pressed ahead, toward what has been given vs. what was not meant to be.

It's been a busy time of life!
Wedding planning and listening and advising. 
Getting ready for a 10 year high school reunion. 
Getting ready to make an, in town move. 

I truly believe that farther along, I will get some understanding about what is going on during this season of the life of Sabrina. Being confused and uncertain is not my favorite emotional state. Yet, if I read the Scriptures, that is just what so many have felt before. This rollercoaster of life is not new at all. It just feels that way, when you are a passenger. It feels higher, deeper, faster, crazier. But, the trick is that in fact, it is not at all. The past is truly right here with us in the present.

 I'm choosing to trust, choosing to "be here", choosing to love anyway, choosing to grow up, choosing to select among the actual options, choosing to smile, choosing to remember the saying "chin up beautiful", choosing to not be scared, and choosing a more faithful and obedient life in Christ.    

It definitely has its "emotionful" moments, but it is a life of purpose that reaches far beyond myself. And there is true joy in that:)