Today has just been amazing! It has really been a DREAM!!!
We went to church as usual, which means that we left the house at 9:45a.m. and didn’t get home until 6:15p.m.
Yep. That’s church for us. . . AND I LOVE IT!
Anyway, after church we invited over some friends.
The guy who went to New Zealand. His brother-in-law. His roommate. And, our worship leader.
(Just a side note. The roommate, William, said something that I hadn’t thought of in YEARS! He called me Gracie by accident, which is understandable. And, then he called me Gracie Lou. I remembered tonight that everyone back home in Texas called me “Gracie Lou.” My teachers called me that, so did my friends, and even my family did. I had forgotten that. It brought a smile to my face. 😊)
So, they came over and we played The Game.
The Game is also known as Marbles and Jokers, but with slightly different rules.
If you don’t know either game. . . Well, they are like Sorry, but if Sorry was on steroids.
So. . .
I’m not going to explain the game because it’s WAYYYY too complicated to even try to explain over a blog post, but I wanted to mention it anyway.
I love this game SO MUCH because it brings strangers together. Take tonight for example.
The guy who went to New Zealand is a complete stranger to me, as is his roommate. I know next to nothing about either one of them. I haven’t spoken two words to either one, and tonight I got to watch them and laugh with them and play with them.
They are actually really cool people, quirks and all! 😊😏
I love nights like these! I love being able to just enjoy the life I’ve been given and the people I’ve met. . .
They make life worth all the trials. They’re family, whether they’re blood or not.
I know that I could put my life in their hands and be completely safe.
I may miss Texas because of the friends that live there, but I could NEVER call it home, because home is now the beautiful place called Oregon!
I’m SOOOO grateful my parents moved our family here, even if it meant sacrificing idols in our lives. This is where I was meant to be. . .
So, I know I’ve written a LOT in the past 24 hours, but I need to make another post before I go to bed tonight/this morning. . .
Our parents had been acting suspicious all week, but I just assumed that our grandparents were coming to visit us because that is what they led us to believe.
How I was wrong!!!
So, my sisters tried to figure out the big secret because they weren’t convinced that our grandparents were coming to visit us.
I knew someone was coming, but I didn’t know who. And, because I had been going along with my parents’ every wish for the past 2 weeks, my parents just assumed that I knew who was coming. . .
But, I didn’t.
And, I knew that if I didn’t look into what my parents were trying to keep from me, I would have a much more enjoyable experience when it came time for the surprise to be revealed.
One thing led to another until my dad was leaving the house because the alarms at his work were going off, which led to us girls watching The Notebook with our mom which led to my dad coming home with our guests. . .
And, I cried. 😁
Because they happened to be my best friends from Texas!!!
I had NO idea. . .
(By the way, this is the same family that Zach belongs to! You know, the friend that literally just had KNEE SURGERY!!!)
. . .We’re not related to each other at all, but we refer to each other’s parents as “uncle” and “aunt.” We’re THAT close.
They are family to me, and they always will be. 😊
IT WAS THE BEST SURPRISE EVER!
And that folks is why you NEVER try to look into your parents’ suspicious behavior because it could end up being the best gift you will ever be given!!!
Thank you Mom and Dad! I know you made this possible and I am ETERNALLY grateful!!!
I’ll post pictures as we have adventures for the next 10 days!
I don’t know what I did or how it happened, but. . .
So, hypothetically, if some guy liked you, but you don’t like him like THAT, what would you do???
Because, I showed up to church today and this kid kept hugging me!
And, he has NEVER done that before, like NEVER.
He came to the same Bible study as me this Thursday and kept sitting beside me, saying, “You looked sad so I thought I’d keep you company.” That’s when I first noticed his behavior.
Again, after all the hugs today, he sat beside me when we were chatting in a group with some adults.
GUYS!!! This is a twelve-year-old!
And, I could see myself dating someone who is 22 or 23 (a five year difference).
But, it’s different and weird if a 12 year-old likes me.
And, the thing is, he’s a sweet kid, so I don’t want to hurt him. . .
We have the same problem with this girl at my church, but she targets older men, like WAY older. And, I know this kid is only five years younger and not twenty years younger than me, but it’s still inappropriate for him to be doing that to me (hugging me over and over, I mean) with our age difference.
I can understand the girls at my church hugging me and even the younger kids, boy or girl, but I can’t allow him to keep doing this. . .
It’s not fair to him or to me.
But, I don’t know what to do, because this kid used to be serious, and now he’s loosened up and has become this free spirited boy. . .
I don’t want to hurt him and forever scar him because I rejected him . .
And, I’ll admit that I intentionally reached out to him several months ago because I just wanted him to feel like he had someone he could vent to, someone to come to since he’s from a broken family.
So. . . I’ll quit texting him. But, I only really do that on Wednesday nights to see if his mom remembered we had youth. We don’t text other than that.
And, about the hugs. . . I guess I won’t hug him back until he gets a hint or until it becomes a problem.
I honest to goodness didn’t expect THIS to happen!
I love the kids at my church; they’re like younger siblings to me and I would never intentionally try to hurt one of them. That’s why this is such a delicate matter. . .
Stay tuned for my next post. . .
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I know I’ve been radio silent for the past two days; y’all know that isn’t usual for me. 😋😏
But there was a reason for my pause in posts. . .
You see, I thought it would be an interesting challenge to fast from not only food, but also from technology for two days.
So, on Wednesday night at 5:30, I started my fast.
There were only three exceptions to my 48 hours of cleansing.
I needed my phone to use as an alarm in the mornings because I’m a heavy sleeper.
I needed to use my laptop to turn in school assignments that were due.
And, at the 24 hour mark, I could drink a half cup of a smoothie of some kind.
I have fasted MANY times before in my life, whether it was to lose weight, to follow a Biblical command, or to intercede for a special person.
Needless to say, I wasn’t too worried about the food part of my fast, but I thought it would be easier to give up my tech than to give up my food.
Oh, how I was wrong! 😆
My technology fast. . .
GEESH! I didn’t think it would be hard because I’m not attached to my phone like my little sister is.
You can ask my family; I NEVER have my phone on me.
However, all throughout the fast, I would want to do little things that I wouldn’t necessarily consider apart of technology, such as depositing a check through my bank’s app, or editing my novel on a program only installed on my laptop.
It kept killing me how I couldn’t perform insignificant tasks such as listening to music or checking my email or playing a video game with my sister.
It was rough, but not impossible.
To make it so that I couldn’t “cheat” during the fast, I also forbade myself from sleeping throughout the day so that I couldn’t sleep through the fast. I wanted myself to actually experience the full effect of ditching technology and food for 48 hours. . .
I think it was worth it because I was able to understand where I stand in life.
At that moment, I would rather give up food than technology, and that shouldn’t be the case. This “challenge,” this test told me that I need to change my priorities in life.
And, it wasn’t that I was trying to binge watch a TV series or anything extreme; I just constantly wanted to get on the internet to get answers or write stories or stalk people on Facebook. 😂 Those all require using technology believe it or not.
And, I was addicted to tech; not to the point of trying to cheat during my fast, but I definitely had my moments where I would think about just looking up something real quick.
It’s tests like these that prove what kind of people we are, and what we truly value in life. And for me, that was tech over food.
I don’t think I ever fully realized that until yesterday. 😥
Speaking of yesterday. . .
(I’m turning this post in a different direction now. 😊)
Yesterday marked a momentous occasion for me.
It’s not something big, but it is significant enough in my life that it’s worth celebrating with a Dutch Bros. chocolate milk shake. 😁😏
Yesterday, I reached the target weight I had hoped to be at this month.
So, within the last six months—since my mom was diagnosed with cancer—I have lost 20 pounds!
I know that may not sound like a lot, but according to research you’re supposed to lose weight at an average pace of 1-2 pounds per week. I lost 8 pounds in five months, and in the past month I lost the other 12 pounds. . .
(I don’t want this post to sound like I’m body shaming myself or over weight people, but I need to write this post as if to have closure about all the anxiety I’ve had in the past about being over weight.)
And, honestly, no one in my family can tell that I’ve lost weight because they’re so used to how I look now, but here’s a comparison for y’all who didn’t know me in June:
Me @ 165 lbs. . .
I HATED taking pictures because of the way I looked!
Me @ 145 lbs. . .
(The first picture is from today!)
It may just be me, but I look like a COMPLETELY different person!
I know I’m supposed to love myself for who I am, but I also know that I should take care of the body God gave me. . .
(I also know there are filters on so that you can see reindeer antlers, but just look at the shape of my face and smile, or even the bags under my eyes!)
Just by looking at my face, you can tell that I’ve lost weight, and I plan on continuing to maintain my healthier lifestyle from now on; I don’t EVER want to gain weight from neglecting my body.
Again, this post isn’t meant to body shame myself or anyone else! It’s meant to encourage others, because if I can put the effort into myself to lose weight—trust me—anyone can!!!
I am not a person who openly admits that I need help or I’m over weight or I eat too much or I eat unhealthy! I keep my insecurities to myself 😣☹ But, I’m learning how to not only deal with my insecurities, but also how to conquer them!!! 🤗
I hope my “purge” results help inspire you to figure out what is important to you in life! And, I hope my diet/exercise results help inspire y’all to shoot for the stars!
Never let doubt keep you from doing the impossible!
Stay tuned for my next post. . .
Check out My Novels page to help support me and my career as a writer!