a bucket list

May 8th, 2014

There are plenty of things on my “bucket list” that I have already accomplished and are more important than the things I haven’t done or seen yet.  I will list those first…


– have a great love story that never ends

– be a teacher

– be a mom

– live my life with purpose filled with Joy, Peace, & Love

– have my own dog


Things yet to accomplish…

– Return to Nicaragua

– See the beauty of Alaska

– Write a book

– Go on a long backpacking trip as a family (when my kids are big enough)

– Enjoy life on a daily basis. No matter where I am. What I am doing. Who I am with. (I’d like to say I’ve accomplished this, but I’m definitely a work in progress.)

– Plenty of Getaways just Drew and I. Destination isn’t important. As long as we are not here and together.

– Raise my children in a way that they will make good choices but also know that their parents love them unconditionally.

Found Poem

April 22nd, 2014

Here is my example of a Found poem.  This came from an article in Time magazine.  I can’t find the article, but you need to make sure for your own examples that you write down the magazine, article title, & author of the original article.

Remember– I did NOT add any words of my own.  I simply cut out words and rearranged to create the following poem.


“Hope isn’t easy”



Tired of being fat.



never make a difference.




By age 16, undeniably


Each year, only getting worse,


Chicken strips and fries



Potato chips

Little Debbie cakes.

Never exercise.

Out of breath.



I couldn’t.


Hope isn’t easy.

I needed help.

A long term remedy.


No easy answers.



But hardly alone.



55 word fiction

April 21st, 2014

Starbucks Luck

Excited nervousness swarms through her like an army of tiny ants; she casually dips her index finger, swirling light foam into the dark warm liquid.

“Gotcha!” a voice whispers.

Jolted and surprised, coffee leaps, twirls, and dances, spraying ugly brown patterns on her chambray shirt and white pants. Shooooot! The interview begins in fifteen minutes.



April 18th, 2014

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“I used to be afraid of failing at something that really mattered to me, but now I’m more afraid of succeeding at things that don’t matter.”  – Bob Goff, Love Does

I recently read the book Love Does by Bob Goff and loved the truth behind how important it is to live a life of love. That is my motto for life… LOVE! One word. One simple yet life changing word.  The above is a quote from the book that really struck me.  I had never thought about how the fear of failure isn’t what I should be worried about, but that I should be more afraid about being successful at things that just aren’t important in life or aren’t leading me in the direction I need to go.  Fialure is ok. It leads to growth. Success is the harder thing to overcome.

Inman Turns 2

March 25th, 2014

Hard to believe I have a two year old, but I guess with the second one on the way it shouldn’t be.  There are so many things I love about being a mom. And honestly, I love being a working mom (if only there was a little more time to sleep!)

Anyway, I threw Inman his first PARTY with a theme and friends and family. It was fun and I will probably make it a tradition!

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People Watching…

March 24th, 2014

I think I went through the first twenty-two years of my life without really seeing anyone. I honestly don’t think this is a bad thing.  When you aren’t observant, sometimes it makes you pretty tolerant of others! 🙂  BUT, then I married a very observant man who quickly taught me how to see the details of things around me.

It still isn’t my first instinct, but I now know how to stop and take things in.  I do think my lack of exterior observance hindered my writing in the past.  How do I create a realistic character if the only thing I know is my own thoughts and experiences.   Now, I am constantly finding myself observing others and thinking, man, what is his/her story? I could definitely create an interesting character off of him.

A couple examples… The Elvis Impersonator at American Pie last year.  A young man in a nice business suit eating at taco bell by himself. A guy in his thirties at Starbucks with two kids who DEFINITELY dressed themselves in mismatched ill fitting clothing as he himself wears his rocker t-shirt and Birkenstock sandals.

Then there is the really watching people’s mannerisms. The leg tapping. The wrist scratching. the pencil twirling. The gum chomping. The avoiding making eye contact with the teacher. The ones who never smile. The ones who are always smiling. Doodling. Blank Stares. Listening to music passively, listening to music actively with subtle sways or head nods.Anyway. I didn’t really do the exact assignment I made you guys do. But I think this post covers why I wanted you to do it…

(Me and my Hubby…)


The OTHER four senses…

March 17th, 2014


The soft pitter, pat of dog paws hit the roughness. Your father’s foot taps in a calm, consistent beat.  The high pitch bubbling laughter of your sister blends with the rustling leaves and hymns of songbirds. With each breath, grilling meat drifts in and out of your nostrils, your lungs.  And the breeze, smelling of fall and hot dogs and nature, shifts, brushing your skin, raising tingling bumps on your arms.

a world without heroes…

March 10th, 2014

Once I started thinking about it, I realized how much of our culture revolves around the idea of having heroes or people we can look up to. I think of all the books and movies that would not exist if we as a human race were not drawn to this idea of having heroes in our lives. There are the obvious ones like Harry Potter or the Odyssey, but then there are the less conspicuous works, like To Kill a Mockingbird.  I mean, without Atticus, who is by my standards, a true hero, the depth and timelessness of the story would be lost.

In my own life, Imother teresa obviously have these heroes of literature whose character and words have made a lasting impact on me, but I also have heroes who are real people. There are people like my parents who gave me so many great memories and values.   People like Mother Teresa, who decided to live a life completely devoted to Love, Peace, Faith. People like Sarah Gibbs, who balances being a mother,a teacher, a wife, a friend; and still manages to smile, listen to my problems, & be truly positive regardless of the circumstance.

To me, life without role models and heroes would take away my most beloved possessions & aspirations–my most cherished friends & dreams.

…10 things you may or may not already know

March 4th, 2014



1.  My sister Kristen is my best friend. I hate that she lives 7 hours away in Tenn.

2. I love cardigans & scarfs…drew in  & necklaces.




3. I met my husband Drew at IWU. We were in the same group of friends our sophomore year. When another friend suggested that we get together, I said, “Seriously? He’s not my type.” 11 years later, we are HAPPILY married and have a beautiful son.


4. Our son is named Inman James. We found the name Inman in the book Cold Mountain (also made into a movie and Jude Law played the character). James is Drew’s grandfather’s first name and his father’s middle name. He will be 2 on March 21st. 🙂



5. I love my middle name … Grace.

6. My favorite color is green.




7. I live in Noblesville and I love my house. There is a horse pasture behind me where I feed the horses apples and carrots.

8.  I love my families. Most summers we go on a summer vacation with Drew’s family to South Haven MI and a fall vacation with my family to Gatlinburg, TN!

9. If I could have a part time job that consisted of just cuddling puppies my life would be perfect.

10. Honestly, the week I spend at Young Life camp each summer really is “the best week of my life.” I am really bummed I won’t be able to go to camp this summer (because of baby #2).


Authors who Inspire…

March 4th, 2014

I love so many authors and appreciate different things about their writing style.

#1 — Bill Bryson is someone I enjoy because his style is fun, vulnerable, and serious all at the same time.  I love his sarcastic tone that shifts to one of reflection and warmth. I love how he writes about the mundane things of life in away that makes me laugh. I feel like I connect to what he is writing though his many allusions to American culture. Here is a sample from Bill Bryson’s book titled I’m a Stranger Here Myself. 

bb“I have very happy hair. No matter how serene and composed the rest of me is,no matter how grave and formal the situation, my hair is always having a party.  In any group photograph you can spot me at once because I am the person at the back whose hair seems to be listening, in some private way, to a disco album called “Dance Craze ’97.”

Every few months, with a sense of foreboding, I take this hair of mine uptown to the barbershop and allow one of the men there to amuse himself with it for a bit.  I don’t know why, but going to the barber always brings out the wimp in me.  There is something about being enshrouded in a cape and having my glasses taken away, then being set about the head with sharp cutting tools, that leave me feeling helpless and insecure” (Bryson 31).

A few other well known titles by Bryson are A Walk in the Woods, A Short History of Nearly Everything, & The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid.


#2 – Elie Wiesel is someone else who I appreciate as a WRITER. He uses such a poetic style littered with parallelism, imagery, figurative language, etc. I love the WAY he writes.  Here is one example of how amazing he is at stringing words together and using rhetorical devices.

Here he is writing about his difficulties in choosing the words when writing Night.

ew“Writing in my mother tongue—at that point close to extinction—I would pause at every sentence, and start over and over again.  I would conju8re up other verbs, other images, other silent cries. It still was not right. But what exactly was ‘it’?  ‘It’ was something elusive, darkly shrouded for fear of being usurped, profaned. All the dictionary had to offer seemed meager, pale, lifeless.  Was there a way to describe the last journey in sealed cattle cars, the last voyage toward the unknown? Or the discovery of a demented and glacial universe where to be inhuman was human, where disciplined, educated men in uniform came to kill, and innocent children and weary old men came to die?… How was one to speak of them without trembling and a heart broken for all eternity” (Wiesel ix).

I mean, come on… that’s good stuff, right?