Wednesday, September 30, 2009


i have a question for my faithful blog readers (all two of you [hi mom]).

what does "hope" mean to you?

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

"it's already better"

last night i went to a meeting to hear about a trip some people from ellie's run took to africa this summer.

there was one particular story from the trip that stuck with me. there was a school which had the words "it's already better" written on the walls. i'm not sure why, but that really struck a chord with me.

it's already better.

they have hope. a hope that i will probably never experience for myself. a hope beyond measure.

it's already better.

i want to go to africa. i've had this desire for the past four years. i believe i will make it there someday, and i know when i do, my life will never be the same.

Monday, September 28, 2009

a fresh start.

call me crazy, but i actually like monday mornings. maybe it's because i don't have to go to the office. but anyway...

monday mornings are like a fresh start. i almost get that same feeling most people get around new year's. on monday mornings, i set goals for my week. things i want to accomplish, ways i want to better myself, etc.

here's to your monday: may it be a time of renewal rather than dread.

and on that note, it's time to make coffee; my work day begins in five minutes.

Sunday, September 27, 2009


i'm on a strict budget for the next two weeks. i've been spending too much money eating out and such the past few weeks, and i have a lot going on in october that will cost me more than what i usually spend. that being said... strict budget.

today i spent $10.73 on groceries that should last me the next two weeks. i'll be enjoying a healthy diet of oatmeal, peanut butter and jelly, soup, tuna, and egg salad sandwiches.


Friday, September 25, 2009


sometimes i just get so caught up in the moment, it seems that all i can do is just cry. i didn't cry tonight, but i tell ya, i was close.

tonight was the fourth installment of live on the green, a free outdoor concert series downtown nashville in front of the courthouse. this was my second time attending this event, and tonight's performers were thad cockrell, matthew perryman jones, and dave barnes. (please check out all of these great artists if you aren't already familiar with them.)

i go to a lot of shows in nashville, and the artists (especially the locals) all tend to make the same joke about performing in nashville: that when it's time for crowd participation and singing along, that it sounds like a choir with all the different parts and harmonies. i mean let's face it, i'm a minority here in that i'm not a singer. and the joke is funny because it's true.

so tonight, in the middle of the set, dave began to perform "when a heart breaks". during the bridge he had us all sing, and all of the musicians quieted down, and that joke became reality. it really was like a choir singing along. and hearing these beautiful words being sung so powerfully by all of my neighbors (we share this city), watching dave soak up the moment under the starry autumn sky, something magical happened, and that's when it hit me: this is home. this is my life. this is where i am right now.

no matter the stresses, no matter the worries, i will always have music, i will always have my city, and i will always, always have hope.

(i feel as though i just babbled on and on and did not do this night justice by any means.)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


remember when i said i needed more silence in my life? yeah. i haven't been too good about that. in fact, i've been going on a whirlwind of activities involving lots of music, coffee, conversations, and friendships. none of which are bad things, at all. but there does come a point when it gets to be a little much. and i think it finally caught up to me.

sunday is supposed to be the day of rest, right? well let me tell you, i rested. a lot. i put in a movie around noon ("secret window") and fell asleep in the middle of it. it ended around two, at which point i moseyed on up to my bed and fell back asleep. until seven. and then i went back to bed at 11pm.

good thing my body knows when i need rest, because sometimes my head doesn't.

but what about the rest for my soul? i finally took a small moment of silence today. as i headed to my coffee shop, i walked in silence and in solitude. granted it was only for two blocks, but it was a still, small moment in my life that i needed. it was a break from the rain (we're drowning here in nash, but it has let up a bit this afternoon), a break from the noise, and a break from reality. and while it's still hot and humid as heck down here, the sound of the leaves crunching beneath my feet was a reminded that fall is on its way. a reminder that as the seasons change in nature, so they will in my life.

this season of my life has been great. i don't know when the season will change, but it will. and i hope that i will embrace it.

Sunday, September 20, 2009


sometimes, you just need to escape. get away from your own little bubble of life. this doesn't always mean you need to go far.

nashville has a lot of coffee shops, and i love all of the ones i have been to. which is quite a few. but i tend to frequent the same one or two places. on friday, i went to one on the other side of town, just to mix things up. and it was refreshing.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

use me up

i don't typically like to have an entire post be song lyrics, but sometimes you come across something so beautiful, you have to share it.

Somebody let me down
Somebody show me love
I wouldn't care much either way

I'd rather the sticks and stones
Than draggin the ball and chain
What if the world wont take me

Even if the holes should crack
Even if the blood flows red
Nothin could be worse than numb

Use me up
Just want any one
To use me up
No one ever does
Use me up

I've carried it all too long
The fear and the pain it brings
Feeling the panic building up
I'd rather the broken heart
Than living in the empiness
What if the world won't save me

Even if the bough should break
Even if the blood runs cold
Nothing could be worse than numb

Use me up
Just want any one
To use me up
No one ever does
Use me up
Use me up

Treat me somewhere cruel
You can throw me away
As long as I feel it
Show me something real
You can't decieve me
I am yours to use

Use me up
Use me up
Use me up

i was lucky enough to hear this performed live as it was recorded back in may. those of you who know me will not be surprised to learn that this is a song from hanson.

Friday, September 18, 2009

there's a first for everything

well kids, tonight i attended my first hockey game. i have to say, i really enjoyed it. i don't know that i would ever say 'hey, let's go to a hockey game tonight', but i would not be opposed to going again.

the preds won, 5-0. and because they scored 5 goals, everyone got free frosty's from wendys.

and we even saw a fist fight break out.

and i'm pretty sure everyone i know in nashville was there.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

the thing about community is...

sometimes, you think you are the only person dealing with something. and then when you open up and are honest about it, you realize everyone else has the same shit you do. and that, my friends, is beautiful.

life in nashville...

is keeping me broke. entertained. and sleepy.

'cause i keep going out and spending my money supporting local artists and discovering great music.

that's okay. maybe someday those artists will buy one of my journals to write their music in and complete the circle.

but for that to happen, i need to actually sell them.

and to sell them, i need to make them.

Monday, September 14, 2009

space. part two.

so i didn't blog yesterday. but that is because i didn't come home yesterday, which i didn't expect to happen.

but anyway.

remember when i talked about finding space? i found it today. and it was beautiful.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

a place unknown.

recently, a friend of mine questioned whether he was the only one who felt like he was a million miles away from where he was supposed to be. as it turns out, he is not the only one. several people responded, and they all felt the exact same way.

i love nashville. you all know this by now; i talk about it a lot. but there is still a part of me that feels... homesick. but not homesick for michigan (where i grew up). not homesick for indiana (where i lived for four years). but homesick... for a place unknown.

maybe this is because i have always felt as though the world is much too big to live in one place for forever. maybe it's because i have such a strong desire to travel (if only my funds were as equally strong).

or maybe, just maybe, it's because we weren't designed for this world.

and so it happens again.

another blog that's technically a day late. it's 2:24am, but i just got home. so this is friday's blog.

today was another reminder of why i love nashville so much. great food, great company, and even better live music.

for those of you not familiar with andy davis, please, please check him out. in the words of jeremy cowart, "he's just dumb talented." (and he's even better live.)

Thursday, September 10, 2009


i am not in the mood to blog today, but i agreed to participate in "blog everyday september". so, here i am, blogging.

it may be a small feat, but still, it is perseverance. which is actually something i've been thinking about quite a bit lately. i don't have enough of it. i need more in so many areas of my life.

we rejoice in our sufferings,because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.romans 5:3-4

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


this might come as a surprise to some of you, but there's a nature girl inside of me. now don't get me wrong... i love living in the city, and at this time of my life there is no place i would rather be. and i hate bugs. hate. i'm shivering at the thought of them.

but anyway. i love nature. i like camping. i like hiking. (well, day-trails anyway. i've never attempted the "carry your tent on your back" kind of hiking.) i love having that big open space to just.... breath.. and to feel... significantly insignificant.

when i think of the peaceful moments in my life, i think of nature places. the precipice of chimney top in the smoky mountains. deep in the woods of warner camp. nighttime on the beach back home. driving through the vineyards of southwest michigan, or the cornfields of indiana. watching the sunset from the bluff of st. joe.

these are the places that speak to my heart. these are the places where i can go to get away from life, from the noise. the places where i can find the silence i mentioned yesterday.

and i've realized something. i don't have any of these places in nashville. i've lived her for three years now. i think it's about dang time i find space to breath. and i think i found it on accident a few months back...

Tuesday, September 8, 2009


i do love coffee. you all know that by now. but why do i love coffee?

i love the taste, and i love the caffeine. but that's not the point. for me, drinking coffee is almost more of what it represents. it represents community, and solitude. conversations, and silence. busyness, and stillness.

does this make sense, all of these opposites? maybe. if i live in the tension between the two.

Monday, September 7, 2009


this weekend i got caught up on my friend chris's blog. one day he decided that he would start to drive in silence during his commute. rather than spending the 12 minutes listening to a few songs, he chose to spend that time in prayer.

upon reading this, my first thought was "that would not be very peaceful if i turned off the music in my car."

for those of you who don't know, last year someone attempted to steal my catalytic converter. they didn't take it, but they did saw into my exhaust pipe. it has been welded, twice, but it's just a patch. it's not really fixed, and therefore my car is loud. and i mean l o u d. so i drown it out by blasting music.

i hide the noise with music, and the noise is the telltale sign that there is a problem with my car.

i could say the same about my heart.

it still counts, right?

i'm supposed to be blogging every day in september. i guess technically it's monday now, since it's 12:55am, and i did not blog on sunday. but i just got home, so it still counts, right? since i just now got home. and it's still sunday in half of the country's time zones. well, 1/4 of the country only has five minutes left.

anyway. my labor day weekend has turned out to be much more glorious than i anticipated. friday was a very relaxing evening at home with the roommates, watching a movie (love actually). last night and tonight both involved dancing up the town with some old college friends, and tomorrow a few friends are hosting a "s'moregasbord bon(d)fire" at their home.

staycation vs. vacation. it still counts, right?

Friday, September 4, 2009

community. part two.

as promised, here is another blog on community.

what does community mean to you? i have seen it in its various forms, and i think it really just comes down to one thing: love. to me community is like a family, in the sense that there comes those times when you have to chose love, whether you feel like it or not.

and then one may ask, what is love?

(you are now bobbing your head to the tune of the haddaway song, aren't you?)

Thursday, September 3, 2009

nashville, i love you.

i talk about nashville and my love for this city a lot. but i can't help it. i just love it so much.

our mayor recently decided it would be cool if we could have some live music and drink some beer "right outside his office". so, we did. the local independent radio station (and other great local businesses) have started up a program called live on the green, and tonight was the first night.

so, there was live music. and beer. and food. all right in front of the courthouse. i mainly went to see ten out of tenn, but american bang and the toadies also played. (however, we did not stick around for the toadies.)

and i don't think you could have asked for better weather for an outdoor concert. perfect temperature, clear skies, and an almost-full moon.

oh, and it was free. even better.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009


i just got home from my community group. we spent the majority of the night asking each other what we think community is, and what we expect from community.

it's late (i'm old) so more on that later. in the mean time, feel free to answer that question yourself.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

being known.

on my way home from work friday, my best friend (stacy) called to vent about her work day. my commute is less than fifteen minutes. before i had reached my home she had come to the conclusion that she was going to drive the five hours down to nashville to visit me. thirty minutes later, she called to say her husband didn't want her to leave on such short notice. thirty minutes after that, she called to say he got over it and she was on her way.

sunday evening, stacy and i drove up to the suburbs to visit some of our other friends from college, amanda and amanda. (i will call one of these "puff" to avoid confusion. that was her nickname in college.) amanda had moved down here with her family a couple years ago, and puff just moved down a few weeks ago. they are now roommates, so we went to visit them.

during this visit, we were able to catch up on each others' lives, as well as reminisce about the past. puff is going through some tough things right now, and she mentioned that it was good to be around people who knew her. and that got me thinking...

about how i had known these girls for six years. about how i was such a different person six years ago. and how we have watched each other evolve. i then realized that most of the people i surround myself with on a daily basis have known me for less than a year. some a few years, but most only a few months.

there is something refreshing about being around people who know you so well and have known you so long. don't get me wrong - i absolutely love meeting new people and making new friends, but there is a comfort with those who know your story. in fact, i feel as though they may know my story better than i know it myself. but more on that later.

(sidenote: a blogger friend of mine has encouraged me to 'blog every day september'... so here we go.)