Thursday, July 16, 2009

Just What I Needed to Read

This is a great article, and I stumbled upon it exactly when I needed to read it.

Emily Thevenin, “Am I of Worth?,” Ensign, Jul 2009, 8–9

I knew where I was going with my education, career, and future family. How could I deal with a chronic illness?
Growing up, I always enjoyed being involved in activities. I played sports, participated in clubs, worked hard in school, and attended seminary and church activities. My participation and success in these activities played a major role in how I viewed myself. As a missionary in Ireland, I continued to evaluate myself according to my efforts and relative success. I was blessed with the strength to work hard and complete my mission. Upon returning home, I went back to school and enveloped myself in activities.
Shortly thereafter I began to feel very ill. After seeing many doctors and undergoing expensive tests and painful surgeries, I learned I had a chronic physical illness. Despite my attempts to go on living a busy and active life, the illness caught up with me.
That was more than five years ago. I now experience constant pain and fatigue, and I have forgotten what it feels like to be healthy. Medications reduce my pain, but they also leave me unable to do much of anything; some days I am not even able to get out of bed. There are times when I feel I have lost a significant part of my identity. How can I be of worth if I can’t even get out of bed?
As a youth I learned about individual worth. Now I’m really being tested as to the source of my worth. Is it based on my accomplishments, or is it based on the truth that I am a child of God? When faced with feelings of inadequacy, I seek guidance through conversing with my Heavenly Father as well as reading and pondering the scriptures.
I have often asked the Lord if I am still important. After much prayer and scripture study I have learned that Heavenly Father’s closeness helps me understand more fully who I really am. I have learned, and continue to learn each day, that my worth does not depend on my abilities but is founded in the fact that I am His child.
I continue to have days when I am discouraged, and I turn to the story of Job to give me comfort and direction. Despite unimaginable difficulties and being judged and misunderstood by friends, he continued to praise God (see Job 16; 19:14). While overwhelmed with grief, Job proclaimed, “Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him” (Job 13:15).
I find comfort in knowing that Job experienced difficulties despite his faithfulness. The story of Job teaches me that my illness is not a punishment from God, and that serving as a missionary and living right does not entitle me to a life free of pain and difficulty. The health problems I have do not make me less valuable to my Heavenly Father. In life we are often rewarded for our accomplishments, our work, our talents, and our abilities. I now find comfort in knowing that the Lord will bless me for my righteous desires despite my current physical weakness.
I lean on the Lord for support and guidance in my illness all the time. It is inspiring to feel the impressions of the Holy Ghost and know that Heavenly Father is teaching me. Through the gift of the Holy Ghost, He gives me peace, love, and assurance. I know by these specific impressions that I am of worth. Even if some days all I am able to do is lie in bed and pray that the pain lessens, it is comforting to know that He cares.
As a result of my trials, I am learning a powerful truth—I am a child of God. Now, instead of feeling empty and alone, I am filled with His love.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Slumber Party Courtesy of the Cassady's

Two weeks ago, Ryan and I had a sleepover at my Aunt Carol and Uncle Royce's home in Monroe. We had such a good visit! We looked through tons of old pictures and stayed up way too late talking!

I love my Uncle Royce!

Kisses for the sweet!

Thanks for your hospitality, Cassady fam! We love you!

Our next adventure

Don't worry, we'll be in Georgia for 6 more months, but after that, it's off to the great state of Texas!
Ryan's job is making our next home Texas, and we are excited for this new adventure! A few weeks ago, we went to check things out around Austin and met up with some old friends.

How could you not fall in love with the beautiful hills of Lakeway, TX?

It was so wonderful to visit with my old roommate, Michele, and her husband.

Did I mention I love this studmuffin?

Let's Make-up

Okay, so I realize this blog has been neglected. With me so involved in church now and my workload doubled, my beloved blog has moved to the bottom of my to-do list. So pardon my infrequent posts. I pledge to be better.

Last post I said some funny things had happened. To start the day off, Ryan and I went shopping at Macy's (yes, I have the best husband, I know). Just as we walk in the store doors, we spy a little girl (5 or 6 years old) in front of one of the column mirrors. And this girl was dancing. I'm not talking ballerina-esque here; I'm talking full-on Britney Spears. It was perhaps the most hilarious thing I have seen in a long time, and it was the perfect way to start the day (not to mention I got an adorable pair of BCBG shoes)!

Next, we headed up to Buford to attend Lisa & Paul's wedding, friends Ryan has known a long time. Well, while we were waiting for the ceremony to start, we noticed there was a very boisterous guest behind us. Little did we know, he would offer up hilarious comment after hilarious comment at any given time throughout the evening. See if you can spot which one he is in the picture below.

Saturday, May 23, 2009


this is a reminder to myself to post about all the crazy funny things that happened today.

stay tuned!

Monday, May 4, 2009

I never used to cook

I hate cooking for myself, so when Ryan came along, it was easy for me to start learning how to cook. Now I absolutely love putting a delicious and healthy meal together for my husband! Here are a couple of my favorite recipes:

Black Bean Burgers

16 0z can of black beans, well-drained
1/2 green pepper
1/2 onion (more or less depending on your taste)
3 cloves of garlic, peeled
1 egg
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 cup bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Lightly oil a baking sheet.
In a bowl, mash beans with a fork until thick and pasty.
In a food processor, finely chop pepper, onion, and garlic. Stir into beans
In another bowl, stir together egg and chili powder. Stir this mixture into beans, as well.
Mix in bread crumbs until the mixture is sticky and holds together. Add more bread crumbs if neccessary.
Divide mixture into 4 patties.
Bake 10 minutes on each side.
Serve on whole wheat buns with lettuce, tomato, mayo, and munster cheese (Ryan likes hot sauce on his).

Stuffed Green Peppers

2 or 3 green peppers
1/2 lb ground turkey
1 small chopped onion (or lots of onion powder)
1 can organic tomatoes, drained
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
a couple pinches salt & pepper
1 cup cooked brown rice
1 cup shredded mozarella cheese

Cut off tops of green peppers & remove seeds.
Parboil green peppers in salted, boiling water for 4 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Brown meat in skillet with onion. Add tomatoes, sauce, salt, and pepper.
Simmer for 15 minutes. *
Add rice. Simmer for 10 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Remove from heat. Add almost all of cheese. Stir until well-blended.
Stuff mixture into peppers & top with rest of cheese.
Bake for 20 mintues.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Somebody bring me the sunscreen!

Today, on my way out of the neighborhood, I noticed there were people at the pool. THE POOL! Don't know if I'm ready to put on that swimsuit just yet; I've been eating crap the past couple of weeks. Crap, I tell ya! I couldn't help but reminisce back to the days of my honeymoon. Oh, the good ol' days! That Bahamian resort was FABULOUS! Take me back! Please!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Yes, world, I'm still here

Sometimes, do you just get annoyed with writing about yourself? I do, so you can understand the lack of posting lately. However, I'm back and better than ever! Ryan and I have been trying to plan our future lately, so any thoughts I had were devoted to that, and frankly, I just didn't want to talk about it. Who knew I would become a private person?

Anways, on Sunday Ryan and I were unfortunately released as Primary Teachers for the 5 yr olds. Then, in a surprising twist, I was called to be first counselor in the Primary Presidency. Ahhh!!! I can't imagine possibly doing it without Ryan, but I'm going to give it my best shot! In honor of this, I would like to tell you all about our favorite classroom activity. Since we have 10 very active wiggle worms, we have what we call "Shake It Out Time." Ryan or I will say, "Shake It Out Time" and then "Ready, Set . . ." and when we say, "Go" all the kiddies have until we count to 10 to shake all their wiggles out. Everyone always makes noises and laughs, but when we say "TEN!" everyone sit quiet and still in their seat. I love it!

Also, I have a new car! I bought a brand new 2009 Midnight Blue Mazda 3. I've never had a brand new car before, but Ryan and I have been extra watchful over our finances, and it paid off! We love it! I've always loved little cars, and this one gets 30 miles per gallon!

Monday, January 12, 2009

New Me

Let me preface this by saying, there are 3 major football games left this season. I'm beyond excited to have my husband back!!!

Ok, now onto other things that have nothing to do with play-offs, fantasy leagues, ESPN stats, or draft picks . . .

This year, for the first year ever, I've decided to lose weight and get healthier. Now that my asthma is under control, Ryan and I have been hitting the gym almost every night! In fact, last Monday, I came home from work to find brand new hot pink running shoes (right size, too!), a new hot pink ipod nano, and an ipod armband!

Needless to say, I was ecstatic that my wonderful husband had been so thoughtful, and I was more geared up than ever to get to work! So far, I have lost 3 pounds! I must say, Ryan is joining in and has lost weight, as well! Watch out swimsuit season!!
P.S. "The Hills" spin-off "The City" is my current guilty pleasure. Check it out if you enjoy super-edited reality shows about spoiled twenty year olds!!