Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Matters of the Heart by a Levelheaded Realist

In this here life, I guess you never really know what might happen.
You never know how one phone call can change into a necessary part of your day.
You never know how days turn into months. And those days get filled with a positive pattern of care and growing friendship.

Sometimes you open your eyes and Good Grief! You are in something that makes you so very happy, but then sometimes so very confused.

And, this is how I would describe the matters of the heart, right now in the land of Sabrina.
My weakest area has been exposed lately. I have been brave, and kind, and strong, and wondering all mixed up together. You can probably take a guess about how yours truly is handling that mix of emotions. To be a levelheaded realist, I will just say, this is all new to me. And I am doing OK, some times handled much better than others.

There are literally a thousand details. But this is not the time and place for all of that. This is the time to just share that matters of the heart do not take long to change your perspective. This is me admitting that I might never "be ready", that I will probably continue to shortchange myself consistently in all things involving dating & relationships. But, this is also me saying that I am not going to give up, even though I see my flaws more often than what is in fact, going very well.

Matters of the heart can be tricky. You can feel sometimes like you are on a peacful ocean and then sometimes like you are swirling towards the Bermuda Triangle. All in one crazy day:) And yet, if it is for the right person, then man oh man. You take some time and then trust and get back in the boat with them, and try the whole ride again. Yeah, I know! What kind of levelheaded realist can even admit to such a thing? Me I guess:)

I'll end this with a wish. I wish I could see about 3 months from now! That would put me at the end of my birth-month and starting my 29th year. I wish I could see that Sabrina and what has gone on in her life. I know exactly, the one question I would ask her. It's not fancy at all. I would ask me, "Was it worth it?" That's all I want to really know. Is the risk that I am taking involving my heart, is it going to be worth it, down the road? In spite of circumstances beyond my control, right now the answer is Yes. And in 3 months I think it will still be a resounding Yes. We shall see. We shall see.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Zumba Music

So, I LOVE my Zumba Toning class, each Saturday morning. And this song jumped out at me today. It was during the cool down, but it had me wanting to keep on dancing!
* PS- It's sad that such a musical talent, has such a dangerous tendency towards physical episodes. Hope he is getting some help.*

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

1 Month- Looking back at the sister's wedding

 It's one month since Melanie and Rashaan said I Do. And I looked back and realized I never wrote about that day. About that weekend. About that special section of life.

And having one month go by, it clears your head, so that only the most important details remain. The small clutter just gets swept aside, which is wonderful.

That morning, Mel and I woke up, way super early. And we looked at phones and saw that we could not deny it, the rain was coming. Hard rain, right at the times when we needed it to be dry. And we laid there in the dark and started talking about Plan B and C. And we waited until 6:00 am, before we called my daddy, this was a problem that needed every player on the team involved.

So plans were made, and we remembered the absolute biggest priority, that the bride and groom make their commitment to each other and to God. Then, it was time for professional makeup and the arrival of the bridal party. Soon, the little traces of worry were lifted and the room was filled with Beyonce and life long friends. The laughter and stories and just time were amazing! I'm still smiling now!

Soon, we were at the church, making final preparations. And I went to the back room with Melanie and laced her into her absolutely gorgeous dress. And it was our almost last time, just the two of us, before she became a married lady. And we talked some, but also were quiet some. I was so proud to be able to help my little sister, get ready for such a big moment.

Pictures and VIP family were admitted for some sneak peeks. My parents were literally bursting with pride. The look in their eyes. I still see it now and smile. The clock struck 3:00 and it was time to get the ball rolling. The bridal party left, and Mel and I chilled for a little while longer in a darkened room, ready to walk over to the church.

In a blink it felt like I was walking down the aisle. And I was grinning and I know I looked amazing and better than that I felt fantastic. There is nothing like having those who love your family the most, come share in a once in a lifetime moment. I couldn't see everyone, but the love in that church. Boy oh boy, it was one of the best times of my life!

Melanie walked in, looking regal and beautiful and so grown up! And she looked absolutely ready to marry her man! My daddy performed part of the ceremony, and his words were God inspired, things taken from the Bible and personal experience. And he choked up just one time. But he held it together, and I remember whispering, "It's OK Daddy". And I wanted to just go over and hug him tight. But the moment passed and the ceremony was complete.

Pictures, and hugs, and grins, and utter happiness followed. It was a messy and rainy day, and our friends and family showed us their utmost support. They were ecstatic and patient and so loving. I won't ever forget those who took time from near and far to share in the blessings of a marriage that I believe was arranged by God. Looking back, I just can't even express the contentment of sharing that day of true love.

Rain and more rain, as we made it to the reception. And you know what, there were glitches. Seating errors, and confusion. BUT, it all got sorted out. And then with delicious food in our stomachs (wait who am I kidding, I didn't eat anything....I had breakfast, a snack, and then a Cherry Pepsi and Reese's Christmas tree at about 1:00am). But those that ate were happy:) We celebrated and mingled and then it was the end.

Rain and umbrellas and goodbye hugs were given. My dearest and bestest friend came back to the church and helped me take down decorations. The parents had to go help the bride escape from the complications of a corset dress;) Before this maid of honor could find rest, I stopped by my aunt's house to see my grandma and aunts and cousins. Then, I stopped by the hotel and chatted with some special out of town friends.

Whew! And now its been one month since that day. Life goes on as it always does, and life has been good. Congratulations Melanie and Rashaan!! You know I always keep you in my prayers and thoughts. Your marriage is an example to others, don't ever forget that:)

With all my LOVE and best wishes for a full lifetime of happiness and joy,
 Sabrina Maude Stewart
Maid of Honor Extraordinaire 
* And with that, ends one exciting chapter of my life. What's next, it looks promising:)*

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Prayer Works Wonders

I would be remiss if I didn't just take time and thank God for abundant answered prayers.
He has answered in my life, and he has been faithful in the life of my family and friends. Looking back I see the answers being delivered all of the time. I am so glad I serve a God who cares. And I am so glad I serve a God who will not be ordered around, just because I say I want things now or soon. For, we do oftentimes find the answer in the waiting. If we don't lose heart.

It is staggering and completely humbling, to see and know that God answered. It is always in his time, but he is so good. And I try and remember to be thankful. But I fall short often. I know that I have said some desperate prayers, prayers coming from a weary and tired place. Prayers for relief and an end to times of waiting. And I am assured again and again the he hears me. He hears his people and he is working.

The trick is that the answer is not always, quick to come. Life wants us to see God and prayer as magical. You want something, and it materializes. But, God is so far beyond all of those ideas. He is on a different plain, seeing the entire world. Seeing his will stretched from the start of time. And still, in all of that, he hears us and blesses us over and over and over again. It literally leaves me in happy awe so many times.

At the start of this year, it is babies that keep on reminding me of a faithful and loving God.
My home wall organizer, is bursting with holiday cards from happy families who are celebrating new babies. And it is so precious and exciting! New families are abounding, and it is exciting to see life where there was none. Praise God from whom all blessings flow!

*And this time of celebration reminds me again to pray for those that wait. Oh, I pray for the answers that are coming. God in heaven, be with us and for us.*

Friday, January 10, 2014

30 before 30- Starting my list

Let me tell you, once this mind of Sabrina grabs onto an idea.....well watch out world!
On New Years a high school friend posted her ideas to start a 30 by 30 list and blog. I was instantly intrigued! Then I started looking it up more online, and it's quite a popular idea. Then another high school friend mentioned it on her blog! SO, yeah, ever since then, I have been thinking and pondering. I have 18 things below. And I have until the start of April to get the thing (list) polished and ready to go. And I already know that I am not even trying to get all 30 things done in one year, but the idea of having these as goals or reminders, is just the motivation I need. No guilt just goodness!

host a dinner party to welcome in one of the seasons
go on a cruise
celebrate 30 in a BIG way
celebrate 30 in a quiet way
travel to 5 places that I've never been before
sleep under the stars
watch a full sunrise and full sunset from the beach
finish reading Julie and Julia and Animal, Vegetable, Miracle
cook or bake 24 new to me recipes (2 a month hopefully)
take a surprise visit home to see my parents
maintain my weight, below a "magic" number
plan a trip just for the sister and I
read through the New Testament
clean out my email ( all 3 accounts)
buy a pedometer and track my steps
adopt a classroom for a school year
update my scrapbook
use the scanner I got and really organize old memories, pictures and papers

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

In 2014

2014 is here, and I was looking back and realizing that I didn't write down my annual look into the year. This has become something that I have done for 3 years, so here we go!

In 2013, I wrote this about the New Year. For 2012, I wrote this about what I thought might happen during the year. And just for old times is what I wrote about at the end of 2010.  

*Friends and family I know will have babies, and begin new relationships, and get engaged, and get married (2 big weddings this year), and some might beak-up.
* Staying fit and fabulous;) and all the lifestyle changes that encompasses (and being accountable to my friends)

*Being a bridesmaid for a dear friend 
*People that I know and love will pass away or suffer through illness

* I am going to continue to grow and be open to wonderful new things in my life, including relationships. No self-sabotage.
* Being dedicated to saving more and paying back what I owe (and I really mean it this time!!)
* Moving and a new job!
* Being there for my friends during this season of "waiting"
*Surrender and growth in my obedience to Christ (my main 2014 goal, that's still developing...)
*Continuing to indulge my travelbug. I have some BIG plans for May!
*Turning 29, and welcoming in another year of wisdom and beauty. And creating and working on my own 30 by 30 list!

For the past 3 years I have used the words below to end these posts. I'm not gonna start changing that now!
Now with all of that said I will say this.....2014 is a completely unknown entity. Sure, I know some things but they are so tiny compared to what I have no idea about. The key is to hold fast to God, have faith and grace, love my family and friends, and be the very best Sabrina Maude Stewart that I can be.....that should not be too hard ( I am kidding) it will probably take me 365 days to kind of get it right!

Favorite Tunes- Say Something

You have probably heard the hauntingly beautiful song Say Something.
It's below, just take a listen. I think it got me, right in the gut. Oh, music you are a powerful thing!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

2014 Health Goals/Resolutions

It is definitly not unique to be thinking about goals involving your health at the start of the year.
It is however, always a good thing for me to write my goals down. I also share them with others.
I am that person who needs someone to check in, and encourage me. Especially, because I love cooking and baking. And food is delicious, and I am not athletic, and my family history has some health issues here and there. Whew, that's quite a mouthful!

So in 2014, here are the few things that are my focus as far as health goes. The great thing is that most of them are not new. They were implemented last year, with success. Now it's time to bring them back to light, and get back to work.

1. The biggie- No or limited soda and french fries. Yep, of all the foods and ways that can pack on the pounds; Soda and french fries are my 2. And I know that to control them, is to gain control of a lot of other things. By saying no to these, I am saying no to stressed out or hurried visits to the drive-thru just because I don't feel like cooking. I am saying yes to a better complexion and overall lighter feeling.

2. Water is my new best friend- Last year, a co-worker gave me a shiny 12 pack of Cokes. And within a couple of weeks I had finished them all. And it was the day that I drank 2 that I saw it clearly. I need water actually with me constantly. So I recycled that box and lugged in a 36 count of bottled water. And I never looked back. Drinking water is good for me. And though at one point I was in a close friendship with the individual Crystal Light packs, I have put those aside too. I need to be drinking clear, regular water on a consistent basis.

3. Track my fruits and veggies- This is a new one. See, I know that you can eat at home and still not be eating well. I can count OJ, and pizza sauce as my feeble attempts at getting in some sort of fruits and vegetables. But, I grew up in a household of abundant and delicious veggies, prepared all sorts of ways. And fruit and I can get along because I have a natural sweet tooth. If I can increase my intake of these healthful necessities, then when I indulge in sweets or fried chicken or pancakes, there will be some sort of balance.

4. To wrap it all up, I need to continue to move more. I have a gym membership that I need to use. And I already know Zumba Toning is my favorite, so I am going to stick with that. Try and go 2x a week (Saturday and Sunday), and see what happens. It is so much fun to me, and if I am having fun, I will make the effort to go:) At work, I need to keep on walking those halls, the school equivalent to pounding the pavement. Mainly, when I get a chance to move I need to fight off the lazy!