Friday Links

Friday Links are a round-up of my favorite posts/videos/projects/photos from around the web. 

17796735_10154540552707709_865017462908124131_n

Happy Friday! It seems the cold weather is back, but we’re not going to let that stop from enjoying our weekend. We’re taking Finley to Chapel Hill to stock up on our national championship gear and visit some of our favorite spots. We’re also gearing up for Holy Week activities at church. Hope you all have a fabulous weekend! XO

For your weekend reading pleasure…

 

Currently: April

17799344_10104437952773888_6109770466362805035_n

Reading: Picnic in Provence by Elizabeth Bard. I love a food memoir, and Bard never disappoints. Stories about life in France accompanied by delicious recipes…what’s not to love?

Watching: The West Wing. Bryan and I are always looking for shows to watch together, and we’ve heard so many people say this is their favorite show of all time. It’s definitely old, but so far we’re really enjoying it.

Crafting: I’m working on some things for our house that I’m excited to share here soon, like some fun gold leaf art for our dining room. Maybe it’s spring or the fact that we’ve lived there almost six months now, but I’m itching to finish some projects and get things in place around the house. We’re hosting a baby shower in May, and my goal is check several projects off my list before then. Fingers crossed!

Anticipating: Spring. I love this time of year. Everything is beautiful and fresh and summer is right around the corner. The weather has been gorgeous the past couple of days, so we’re excited to spend some time outside this weekend and soak up some sunshine!

Celebrating: A NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP! The Heels won their sixth national championship on Monday night, and it was so, so sweet. I’ll be writing more about that game later, but for now I’ll just leave you this this: One Shining Moment. 

On Being a Tar Heel

9778979-joel-berry-ii-ncaa-basketball-north-carolina-georgia-tech-850x560-2

I don’t write about it here often because people tell me that I can be a tad obnoxious. (I prefer to think of it as passion.) Still, when I think about my favorite things in the whole world, there is one thing that finds its way to top of the list every single time:

Carolina Basketball.

I come by the obsession honestly.  I am a born and bred Tar Heel.  My dad instilled in me a love of all things Carolina—especially Carolina basketball—from the very start.  He passed on the kind of love that can elicit the sweetest kind of euphoria and the worst kind of heartbreak within seconds of one another. It’s the kind of love that makes you want to jump over fires and throw things at the tv.  It’s the kind of love that makes you feel a little giddy when you hear names like Phil Ford or Tyler Hansbrough or Dean Smith. It’s pure bliss.

I was a junior at UNC when the Heels won the 2009 national championship. I will never forget that night—the confetti, the noise, the celebration. I sprinted to Franklin Street with a few thousand of my new best friends to jump over fires and climb trees and sing Hark the Sound at the top of my lungs. There’s just no other happiness quite like that.

Tonight the Heels take the court in the title game for the second year in a row.  As I watch tonight, I’ll inevitably be thinking about Marcus Paige and Brice Johnson and the game that could have been. I’ll be thinking about my sister and how much I wanted her to have a championship like I did before she graduated last May. I’ll be thinking about that last second, punch-in-the-stomach buzzer beater (and I’ll try not to cry).

I’ll be thinking about 2009 and reliving the days when I could actually participate in the shenanigans going on down on Franklin Street. And yes, I’ll be thinking about 2005 and 1993 and 1982 and 1957. Because, dynasty.

I’ll be thinking about Luke Maye’s game winning jumper over Kentucky and Kennedy’s incredible performance versus Oregon.  I’ll be thinking about Justin Jackson draining threes like nobody’s business, and unfortunately I’ll probably be thinking about our free throw percentage.

But mostly I’ll be thinking about how lucky I am to be a part of the Carolina family.  I’ll be thinking about how incredible it is that I’ve gotten to watch so many games in the Dean Dome, surrounded by the kind of legacy most programs never achieve . I’ll be thinking about football games in the fall and picnics on the quad in the spring—how the campus changes colors with the seasons, but is gorgeous in every single light. I’ll think about how I feel every time I hear James Taylor’s Carolina in my Mind and how that little town in Blue Heaven holds some of the best memories of my life. I’ll be thinking about the people I spent four years with there and how being a Tar Heel means you have family no matter where you go. And I’ll be thinking that win or lose, it’s a really good day to be a Tar Heel. Always.

Go Heels!

Aware

dock_during_sunset_by_tvang83-d5qnm5j

I’ve been studying the story of Moses recently.  Our kids are doing a musical about Moses freeing the slaves, and in an effort to help them understand more about the man they’re singing about (no kids, Moses was not one of Jesus’ disciples), I’ve been learning more about him, too. The other day I was reading the story of Moses at the burning bush. I’ve read this story many, many times and heard it told a hundred different ways. But this time, I was struck by something new. There was one word that stood out and changed everything for me: Aware.

God spoke to Moses, and he said, “I have certainly seen the oppression of my people in Egypt. I have heard their cries of distress because of their harsh slave drivers. Yes, I am aware of their suffering.”

Aware. That word says everything, doesn’t it? Often, in times of hurt or fear or pain, we feel like God is absent—like he doesn’t know or doesn’t care about what we’re going through.

But God speaks to Moses in the most miraculous of ways, and assures him that he does indeed see what’s going on:

I know. I see. I’m there. It may not be the way you want right now, but I promise that I’m working in this, too. I’m aware. I’m with you. 

I think that what we want so often is just to be seen. So many people are walking through life carrying massive burdens that know one else can see. And even though we may try to keep these parts of our lives quiet, there is something inside of us longing for someone to come along and say that they see our pain. They get it. They’re right there with us. We want to know we’re not alone.

God’s promise to us is not only that we don’t have to go through it alone, but that he knows and understands what we’re experiencing.  He’s knows every fear, every worry, every hurt—he sees all of it. God is aware. Isn’t that a beautiful promise?

March Reading List

  1. The Hopefuls by Jennifer Close. The Hopefuls tells the story of a young couple living in D.C.  during Obama’s administration. Beth, the protagonist, follows her husband to our nation’s capital to pursue his political dreams and slowly (and somewhat painfully) learns to navigate the world of fierce competition, gossip, and shameless self-promotion.  The novel doesn’t have much of a plot, but I couldn’t put it down. More than anything, it offers a honest portrayal of the day-to-day pitfalls and triumphs of a marriage. Really good.
  2. Today Will Be Different by Maria Semple. I was excited to read this book because of how much I LOVED Where’d You Go, Bernadette? Unfortunately, this one didn’t quite live up to it.  Sample’s writing is funny and at times a little wacky, but I just couldn’t find anyone or anything to connect with in this novel. It felt like it lacked direction and purpose. I still really enjoy Semple’s style, but I wasn’t in love with this story.

Friday Links

Friday Links are a round-up of my favorite posts/videos/projects/photos from around the web. 

kenny-williams-kennedy-meeks-ncaa-basketball-ncaa-tournament-east-regional-north-carolina-vs-notre-dame-850x560

Happy Friday! I hope you’ve all had a great week. This weekend we’re spending time with friends, cheering on the Heels, and praying that the snow will stay far, far away. Hope you all have a fabulous weekend, too. XO

For your weekend reading pleasure…

*Photo Source

This One’s for the Girls

Yesterday was International Women’s Day, and I loved reading all the posts and comments from other women about the bold, beautiful ladies who have changed their lives. I love the idea of taking a day to celebrate women, because I am so deeply thankful for the friendships in my own life.

I am unapologetically a girl’s girl. I love my husband, but the truth is that I would be lost without my mom, my sisters, and my girlfriends. They are my TRIBE. The women in my life inspire me with their courage, compassion, and creativity. They are my confidantes and my cheerleaders. I can count on them to make me laugh, sit with me when I cry, celebrate with me when life is good, and help me finish a bottle of wine. To me, girlfriends are not optional. I need them, and they make my life sweeter and richer every single day.

We celebrate women because of the light and goodness and strength they bring to this world. And let’s be honest…they just get stuff done. Cheers to the wise, fierce, fabulous women we’re celebrating—may we know them, may we be them, may we raise them.