Saturday, November 18, 2006

Had a bombin' weekend. It's not even over all the way. It started on Friday when I met up with Jada and Payten for supper at Carabba's. Place is money if you don't already know. We had fun catching up, cutting up, and carrying on. We then moved the party to my apartment. It may seem odd because the three of us are so different, but we've totally moved into that stage of sisterhood where we have a blast together. We understand each other, and the friendships are thick because you know the good, the bad, the ugly, and you've had years of life together to accept each other in spite of it.

Here's what the "Butler girls" hanging out might consist of: We're ripping on Jada because she'll make silly comments, or she has a tendency to say things that throw you off like, "I didn't know you had to pay for electricity. I figured if you bought the bulb, the electricity came for free." or one of my personal faves: "It's cold as Methuselah in here." The list goes on. Ask her friends. But we love her: she's high drama, high fashion, and very family-oriented. Payten will be the one dishing the dry, sarcastic jokes and coming out with some random bouts of energy. Just challenge her to a screaming contest. My whole building hates me now. I'm usually the one sharing stories and neurotic analyses of various situations and issues. They're nice enough to listen in pretend amusement until we all come to the conclusion that I'm crazy. Then we move on.

Once we met back up at my apt, Payten decided she needed ice cream and Jada wanted a coke. So we make the late-nite trip to the nearby Kroger, already in a sub-state of delirium. And keep in mind, once Jada gets going and cutting up, she doesn't care who's around or what she's saying or how loud she's saying it. That brought some fun stares. Our trip was complete when I made mention of a beastly muffler someone had tried to gee up a lowrider with. It was no more than 5 inches from the ground. All it took was me saying it looked like the car had hemorrhoids before Jada did all but fall on the pavement in laughter. That drove me to the Lauren-Webb-cackle, and the three of us were out of control. Fun times.

We watched a movie, went to bed, then got up way too early to meet Meemaw and Jasper for breakfast at Shoney's. I can't even remember the last time I went to Shoney's. But it was good. Payten was going to the Boro today to visit friends, and Jada and I went to the TN-Vandy game with the extra tickets that Meemaw and Uncle Jasper had. It was such a good game. I had so much fun. TN finally showed up, and it was so satisfying to witness firsthand. I did kinda pity some of the nice Vandy fans near me, though. TN fans ARE rough. Maybe not any worse than the rest of the SEC, but man, they get rowdy.

And yes, this post is in orange in honor of my boys. They showed out today.

So that's my fun weekend. Not too much to mention post- those events. I hope yours was good. What did you do?

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Rachel Ray

Everyone tells me I look like her or remind them of her, so I decided to establish her skills as well. Well, maybe not HER skills, but through fun experimentation, I'm hoping to end up with some of my own. Katie was out of town tonight so it was the perfect time to take over the kitchen and concoct something interesting. For some reason, I always tend to get creative when it comes to cooking. I don't do it often enough to have habits. So I just wing it...every time. Sometimes it works out; others are not so great. I've got at least a few years before I'm cooking for anybody besides myself, so I can afford a few mistakes.

As for tonight...two out of three ain't bad. That's all I'm saying.

Friday, November 10, 2006


That's how I felt tonight after hearing words and music from
  • Jimmy Needham
  • at Lascassas Baptist Church. His style is extremely unique: acoustic guitar, young white boy, and a funky, almost motown-ish feel. And his voice, the kid's voice was astounding. He's only a senior at Texas A & M, but he owned his voice like a seasoned artist would. Lots of jazzy scaling and soulful improvs.

    But the most valuable thing this guy has to offer is his passion for Truth and sharing it. His set lasted about an hour and a half, but he only sang about 5 songs. He shared so much with gut-honesty about the need to spread the Gospel. That phrase gets played out but when he kept bringing Scripture that magnified the ULTIMATE, ETERNAL purpose of GOD'S GLORY through the salvation offered through Jesus Christ. What are we doing? What do we spend our days, our hours, our minutes thinking and talking about? The Bible's very clear about our lives on earth being but a vapor, a VAPOR! If you divided up our "investments" of time and energy into two categories: TEMPORAL and ETERNAL, how much would we be "worth"?

    He even spoke specifics about miracles Jesus is currently doing in parts of Asia, because the people BELIEVE. It's not that He ever stopped working in that way; it's that we stopped expectantly and faithfully asking Him to. I was just ashamed when Jimmy was telling the story, because I knew no weak prayer of mine at this point in my Walk would ever be used to perform "Only Jesus Could" calibur miracles. Over there, even the nonbelievers know that He's the only God able to do such things, and they accept it. It doesn't even occur to me to ask for it in the beginning.

    Then he spoke about India. And ever since I heard Andrew Osenga speak of it at a concert of his in June, it's kinda been pulling at my heart. Plus, my buddy Stephen Billings took a mission team there this summer, and I was praying for that trip and the people there. So I can't tell if God is giving me a glimpse of His future for me or if India is just the new China in terms of unreached people in the spotlight. If you have a minute and want to work on the discipline of prayer, I would really appreciate your help in discerning this. But no hurry, I have a peace and an understanding that He will show me where He wants me just in time to get me there.

    In the meantime, He is so faithful to sustain me and even give me favor in my current situation. Unlike my Monday, I'm loving this rotation. Paula, my classmate that I'm paired with this month, is a great coworker. We always have a good time; she's upbeat, pleasant, smart, and she surprisingly laughs at many of my jokes. That's always a plus. And Dr. Wright is great. She's very intelligent, great at her job, direct about what she expects, and has a good sense of humor as well. Great qualities to find in a preceptor.

    Since I've been back from Europe, I haven't been as stressed. I think it's some of the American that rubbed off of me. And I like being without it. I'm not saying I'm not thankful to live in this country. BELIEVE ME. I am. But there are negatives. And being driven by goals of accruing money and saving time is something I can live healthier without.

    Simplicity has been a somewhat lofty goal of mine for a while. But now it seems closer. And I can even see it. Some of the things Jimmy said tonight gave me a glimpse of what it looks like. And it centers on Christ...and fellowship with Him. Which requires time...set aside for Him. So that's the new goal. Genuine time spent in His Word and in prayer, not the five minutes after my morning shower or the 3 before I fall asleep. I'll be honest. I'm scared as I type this. Because then it's documented. Maybe you could pray for that too.

    Oh yeah, little pop quiz: What's after "Be still and know that I am God"? The rest of the verse is the key and one of the points Jimmy made tonight.

    Thursday, November 09, 2006

    Speaking of bombin' pics...

    Please if you have some time, check out Reema's pics from Africa. They're amazing. Her blog is linked on the left here. It's called "Reems in Botswana". Some of her shots look professional and some surreal. So neat. See them for yourself.

    Tuesday, November 07, 2006

    Yay, got a few pics up...

    And I mean, not too many. I have them arranged as slideshows on my myspace. Check them at . Trust me, I have tons more, but these are some good ones...

    Monday, November 06, 2006

    Yeah, so, uh, being back isn't as glamorous as I remember it. lol. Don't misunderstand me: I'm very thankful to be back in the US, to get to be near my family and friends, and to get to sleep in my bed (which may be named a world wonder, because it's definitely one of the best places on earth). However, today back at my rotation at the pediatric hospital at Vanderbilt, reality hit me...and I think it left a bruise.

    I think it will be a great month. I know I'll learn a ton. But I'm already dragging. I have to be there at 7, which means getting up around 5. Geesh. My eyelids start getting heavy anytime I sit down...which is most of the day since rounds are done around a table instead of in patient rooms, then I have to prepare my patients (sitting at a computer), then we conference with my precepter (sitting down). The Lecia Webb-syndrome kicks in, and I'm out in 2.5. I say that because Lecia also has a tendency to get droopy-eyed as soon as she sits. I'm trying to wean myself from the caffeine I lived off of in Europe. In fact, I'm currently suffering a withdrawal headache as I type. I must push through.

    This weekend was great. It was suchhhhhh a blessing to see my family. I didn't get enough time with them, though. I could have spent weeks there. I was so sad I cried on the way home. lol. I am more and more convinced every year of my life that I have the best family on earth. I love them...all...even the tough ones. I'm so proud of them. I know them, the good and the bad, and can still say they're some of the best people I've ever met. That's the real deal. And there's a ton of people like that in my family. I'm so blessed. I'm not bragging...I'm just expressing gratitude for what God placed in my life. Besides, their coolness doesn't make me cool by association. I wish it did. Then I'd be the coolest kid in Carroll County...even though I don't live in Carroll County anymore. Maybe I'm tired. I think I should stop now.

    Friday, November 03, 2006

    I'm back

    I think I'm supposed to say, "and better than ever" after that. Hopefully that's the case. We'll see. I feel a little overwhelmed by the transition before me. I am so comforted and excited to be home and around what was "normal" a month ago, but I'm not the same person now. And I'm glad. I feel older, more seasoned...which is hilarious, I know it was only a month. But I've seen and experienced so much. America is so limited in its perspective sometimes. I know I have been.

    Funny after travelling ALL day yesterday (from Budapest to Amsterdam to Detroit then to Nashville), Payten picked me up at the airport. I called Katie, my roomie, to make sure she was there to let me in when I got home. I had left her a myspace message a couple of days earlier to let her know when I'd be home. Well, turns out that Katie is Birmingham for a job interview and is not returning until Sunday. AND she hadn't checked her myspace in a week or so. I'm tired, I'm frustrated- not at Katie, just with the situation, and I just want my bed. There's not room for extra people in Payten's dorm room, and there was so much I needed to do at my apt. So I called a locksmith, and I was able to finally get in. Ugh. The drama never ends. Nothing's simple. I think part of it is my fault because I prayed for safe and simple travel home, but left out the getting into my house part. lol.

    I was only able to sleep about 5 hours last night. I woke up at 7 ready to take on the world. I don't know if it's my circadian rhythm or my excitement to see my fam that's got me off-kilter. Maybe a little conglomeration of both.

    I promise to write more about my post-trip observations once they've had time to consolidate. Right now I just want to hug a lot of people whose faces haven't blessed me in over a month.