Home is Where the Heart is…

Birmingham Sunset

Birmingham Sunset

Right now I’m sitting in my bed in my hotel watching Parenthood and Revenge on Hulu and wishing Hewitt was curled up beside me to keep me warm. Does anyone remember that moment when – all of sudden – you knew that you officially called somewhere else home, besides where you grew up with your parents? Throughout college I called my parents’ houses “home,” and they were my home. They were my sanctuary, my safe place, the place I could release all my college worries and stresses and just be the me I had been my entire life. Really it still is, when I’m around my family I slip into my old roles. Sure, I’ve changed some over the past few years, but when I’m around my family it almost seems like I’m still that same girl I was at 6 or at 13 or  even 16. I slip into my old rhythms, but really this post isn’t about that feeling. This post is about that moment when you realize that your childhood home is no longer home. It is no longer the place where you seek refuge or where you can be the most true you.

I realized that last Christmas. It had been a hectic Christmas trying to go here, there and everywhere, but mainly just the normal holiday stuff that everyone does. All I could think about during this time was getting back “home” and winding down in front of the fire. In a moment it hit me: home wasn’t the place I had always thought it was, but instead I had a new home in Birmingham, with my husband. It isn’t that where my parents live isn’t my home, but it no longer is quite the same place it used to be for me. They are places that house pieces of me and memories that I will always hold dear, and of course my family holds pieces of my heart. Family will always be a safety net for me, but Jamey is my new home. When we got married I think the fact that Jamey was my home became head knowledge. It wasn’t until we got into our routine and really lived everyday life together, really relied on each other, and then spent sometime away from my old home, that it became clear to me how much he was truly my home and my safety and my refuge. I find comfort in that, you know since I’m supposed to spend my whole life with him and all…. But honestly I’m not sure I ever consciously thought through the fact that one day I would have a new home in my heart and that something else would feel comfortable and safe. I’m glad that it happened though and I’m glad it overcame me when I least expected it, because I had to really stop and think about it, and I could step back an enjoy it.

Somehow this post became sappy when I didn’t mean for it to, but did anyone else have that moment of realization? Even apart from marriage, just living somewhere and becoming aware of how much that place became the place your heart resided and it became home for you?

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A Time for Change

You know those times in life when there seems to be a life event that happens for everyone at the same time? Like when I was graduating from college everyone was getting engaged, now everyone is getting married. They say babies come next, but I think the next step in our lives is growing up, if  you can call it that.  Graduating college brings on new responsibilities. You have to make major life decisions, and you have to actually be responsible and not just pretend to be.  You move away from your college town and your college friends and your college lifestyle, and have to figure out how to pay rent, buy health insurance, and figure out those pesky 401(k) options. Or at least you hope to grow up. You start new jobs, or you go to graduate school. You look for new opportunities and you hope that you can pull your life together enough to at least fake becoming an adult. It is exciting and scary all at the same time

My sister and I at my graduation in May

My sister and I at my graduation in May

I was describing where I was in my life right now to someone the other day and at the end she said you are just in a stage of new, and for some reason that hit me because yeah, that is exactly where I am right now. It feels exhilarating and makes you grip your seat out of fear, but someday we will look at the decisions we made and be so glad that we did that thing that made us scared. It is so easy to become frustrated at the money we don’t have or the things we can’t do, but I hope that I look back and don’t see this as a time of frustration and being terrified, but a time where I made exciting decisions and stepped out and did something new that I normally wouldn’t have the courage to.

(c) Ben Heine

A few weeks ago I met with someone new, and she asked me to help out with a girls youth group, so I said yes. This is my something new today. I’m not sure where it will lead, but I’m just trying to go where the Lord is leading me. I hope you pick something new today too.

Today make a decision, change something that you don’t like, live in the stage of new and be happy here and not just frustrated and scared. Where are you today? In a stage of new? In a stage of complacency?

Thankfulness

WOW! It has been ages since I’ve had time to sit down and update everyone. Jamey and I have been busy bees lately and it has been awesome, but definitely stressful at times. Lately we’ve been up to work and school and I’ve been studying for the CPA. I’ve taken two out of the four tests, and I haven’t found out any of my scores yet which is driving me CRAZY! I won’t find out for a little while longer….

Oh and if you only really care about pictures just scroll to the bottom 🙂

The holiday season is most certainly upon us and with the passing of Thanksgiving this past week and the quickly approaching Christmas I thought I would document a few things I am thankful for so in the years to come I can look back and see it!

I’m definitely thankful for the fantastic jobs both Jamey and I have. Jamey LOVES his job and I do too which is such a blessing during these crazy times. And even though I absolutely HATE studying I’m glad for the opportunity I have to attend grad school and sit for the CPA exam because both are fairly expensive and time consuming, and so many others don’t have the money or time I do to do both, so that is definitely a blessing! I often forget that when I am in the thick of studying and I think I ask Jamey about 124563825 times if I can just quit and become a housewife which I’m totally kidding about (well sort of…), but I get frustrated and need to remind myself I have such a great opportunity which so many others don’t have.

I’m also thankful for the amazing apartment we are able to live in and all the great things we have to fill it up with. I am so bad about wishing I had more, prettier, better, etc etc, but really I have a wonderful roof over my head and all the other stuff will come with time!! Everyday I pass so many people that don’t even have beds to sleep on so I’m taking time this holiday season to be grateful for the comfy bed I get to crawl into each night.

This past week hanging out with my family made me realize what an awesome family and friends the Lord has given me. I don’t even know what all I could say about them because it would never be enough to describe what all they have done for me or what I know they will continue to do for me over the years!! Let’s just say I definitely don’t deserve all the love my family, friends and even new family have given me over the years and I will continue to repay them forever!

And of course I could never forget to be thankful for my little family! Hewitt, Gandalf, and Jamey may be an odd little family but I wouldn’t trade any of them for the world! Jamey has been more understanding than I could ever hope for! Right now he is working on our Christmas cards. I mean what guy would be pouring over the hundreds of pictures we took and making sure we picked out the perfect ones to send out for Christmas?? I don’t know many which is just a small reason why I am so thankful for him in my life. In just two weeks we will celebrate our first anniversary. The year has flown by and I can’t believe it! He has been my rock this year and I don’t know where I would be without him!

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving too! We spent the days in Gatlinburg with family and we are going to spend the upcoming weekend with more family! Have a good week!

Overwhelmed and Over-Blessed

Confession time: I haven’t posted in a LONG time. I even left a cliff hanger blog post and promised I would update in a couple of days and then I failed. The fact that I failed is no surprise. Thank goodness that I am forgiven by a Savior that picks me up after I fail Every. Single. Time. because I do it often. But I digress…I’m here to sort of explain my failure and even more than that send a shout out to my best friends.

These past couple of weeks have overwhelmed me beyond belief. I began studying for the CPA exam a couple of weeks ago, but no matter how hard I tried to get everything together and stay on track with my studying I just fell more and more behind. We traveled on the weekends or I had things going on in the afternoons/nights and couldn’t seem to fit it all in. Last weekend it came to a breaking point. I pretty much stayed in all weekend and studied non-stop to catch up. The worst part of it is that it is some of the most overwhelming and hardest stuff I have ever had to study. It is like taking a test a test on an entire textbook of material but only having a month to study the whole text book. Well if all I was doing was studying for the CPA it might not be so bad, but I also have to study for my classes in school which aren’t altogether difficult but dfinitely time consuming. Writing papers and reading textbooks and doing online discussion boards just takes time that I don’t exactly have. Meanwhile we are still pretty busy at work trying to get 10/15 returns out the door. I’m also supposed to be training for a marathon and I’m desperately trying to cling to some intimacy with God. Oh and lets not forget my poor husband who defintely gets the slighlty disyfunctional peice of me that is left at the end of the day while we are trying to make a pretty big decision ourselves right now.

I tell you all that not to throw a pity party for myself because as busy as I am right now I try to take a step back and think of how busy I will be one day when I have a full-time job, kids, and numerous other responsibilities to wrap my head around. I do tell you this to give a slight reasoning behind my absence from the blog and from anyone and everyone’s lives right now.

I also want to say thank you to all my friends who have made the effort to keep up with me recently . I’m truly not the best at keeping up with people. I live more in the right now and the future and I’m just all around bad at making sure I’m intentionally with keeping up with the people most important in my life. I am truly blessed by friends that understand this and don’t let me slip by the wayside when I haven’t called to chat in awhile. I have had several friends who have texted just to chat and I’m the absolute worst at texting. If I’m at work and I’m in my zone I won’t look over at my phone or if  I do I will just say I will text later and then later never comes. The same is true when I get home at night I often put my phone away and don’t look at it again until the morning, which is also an effort not to spend my whole night on the phone and instead to enjoy time with Jamey. But the Lord has blessed me with friends who don’t disappear when I take 8 hours to text back or when I forget altogether to text back, I really do appreciate each and everyone of you and I am more than blessed to call you my best friends. I hope this public display of affection is not irritating to everyone else reading my blog, but I wanted to share a little of my blessings with everyone!

I hope you all have dear friends like I do and I hope one day I can pay them back with a fraction of the love they show me all the time. My heart really is to be more intentional with everyone in my life, but I don’t always succeed in those areas. LOVE TO ALL the friends in my life and a special thank you for being so understanding of my crazy life and making the special effort to keep in touch.

Learning sometimes takes time

And in our case it seems we are in a learning phase on a few things in our life, but we haven’t quite it all out yet.


We have learned:


– That it is OK to be lazy on Sunday afternoons sometimes 🙂


– That it is even more OK to be passionate about your job and actually like going to work early/staying a little late


– It’s NOT OK to dislike your job and dread going to work


– A beautiful woman from Africa can make your day, week, month and that you can feel overwhelming love for someone you’ve never even stood face to face with


– Sometimes you do have to practice a little patience and wait until God reveals His plans. 


– And most of all that learning takes time and sometimes you don’t have it all figured out, but if you keep praying and seeking God’s will He will give you the strength to keep learning. 


We are loving life and family and friends these days, but we are definitely having to practice a little patience in our lives to wait and see what the Lord wants us to do in some areas of our life.  


We joined a small group today at church and we liked it a lot! Please keep us in prayer as we try to meet new friends and get involved in our church! We are excited for what that holds for us and the things we can learn from our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ.