Friday, November 21, 2014

A Community Group Thanksgiving

Last night was our Community group thanksgiving potluck.
An amazing time with amazing people, sharing good conversation, many laughs and the different things we were all thankful for.
Iv never been good at Candids, but I'm very proud of these.
let the Photos speak for themselves...

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Our Community Group and What it Means to us

In August we joined a church called The Crossing, which was long overdue, and its been one of the best things to happen this year. They do this great thing where they have series that last around 6-8 weeks focusing on different subjects and areas of the Bible.
Its also the first Church I've been to that feels like a family, that has clear and direct messages directed at helping and changing your life for the better. Its not just a mundane message surrounded by a passage in the Bible, its actual encouragement or guidance, or Gods word without making nice of the harsh truths.
The pastor, the workers, and the volunteers are all so lovely and warm. Not fake warm, but genuinely loving and warm. It truly feels like a family.

One thing that has been great is our community group.
Its like a bible study, except we are focusing on a curriculum called "Freeway", that's all about getting freedom through Christ from our sin and our problems.
Anger, resentment, hurt, unforgiveness... etc.
But one of the best things, is having joined with 25 people, once a week in fellowship and friendship. Getting to know each other, being there for each other, and supporting each other through this curriculum, and our daily lives.

Sadly the group is so large that it's hard to be there for everyone, and getting to know everyone is hard when a percentage of people don't show up on a weekly basis.
It has been a comfort and encouragement in many areas, and a light in our life.

I think we have only had 6 weeks, but it's already changed my life, even just a little and I'm looking forward to continue to have fellowship with this lovely group of people

(Missing seven people, I think)

Sunday, November 2, 2014

A Typical California Halloween

I haven't celebrated Halloween in years. Not by choice, more because we didn't have friends to do things with. So no plans were really made.
but this year everything changed.

A week before Halloween we got invited to a party my some friends from community group, we didn't think we would be able to go because I made plans with a different friend to go see a movie. 
Honestly, I wanted to go see the movie, and I really wanted to hang out with my friend, but she had invited other friends as well and they changed the plans to walking around and looking at the decorations, and that just didn't work for me, 1.) because my feet/body had been strained, I had done a lot that week and 2.) because I wanted to actually participate in Halloween... not watch people participate.
So I rainchecked with her, and we decided to go to the party. 
It was literally 4 hours before the party was going to start, and we had no costumes.
So like a typical girl does, at least once in her lifetime, I went as a Cheetah Matriarch AKA... a Cat :p
Which I both loved and hated the idea of doing something so simple and mainstream.
I already had the diamond cat ear headband from a previous birthday that my mother gave me for kicks and giggles, and I had a comfortable pink cheetah print dress, and was able to do some cat like makeup with my liquid eyeliner, so I was happy with how it turned out as a last minute costume.

Because lets get one thing clear, I am one of those people, who wants to go ALL out for Halloween, no half done costumes like I did this time (it was last-minute though, work with what you got) or mainstream costume kits from Wal-mart.
I mean spending months, on it.
but maybe next year.
This year, I got to actually do something, and we had a blast!!!

Good people, alcohol, food, games.
What more could you ask for? :)
The reason I called this Halloween typically Californian, is not just because of my outfit, but because I've never been to a Californian party, well I've been to parties out here, but family parties. I guess you could say I've never been one with just my peers, and it seemed to resemble what you picture Californian parties to be. 
Of course it wasn't a huge kegger with people tearing apart the house and falling out of windows drunk.
But some guys hit on some girls who didn't know each other, then they made out in the backyard and then apparently they puked in the bush's :p
But in all honesty it was a wonderful time! 
After half the party left to go bar hopping, 10 of us stayed behind and played fish bowl.
...and I'm not even going to begin to try and explain that game :p but it was fun.

my Halloween was the best I've had in years, which makes it nearly perfect
and I'm looking forward to the future holidays to come

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Cool Breezes and Pumpkins

Pumpkins and Lattes.
Scarves and Cardigans.
Cool breezes and the trees changing colors.
Fall is the season that makes you feel warm and cozy, full of surprises and gatherings. preparing for the holiday season and hoping for a chance that it will rain.
I don't quite understand how this season couldn't be my favorite season!
Although (don't tell fall) but I love the Christmas season, I'm so looking forward to December!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Take Joy in the Little Things

Things are weird right now
Ever since I quit my job, and Michael got let go, finances have been tight, but it seemed sooooooo unreal, that we didn't really slow down at first, and now we have skidded to a halt!
Before this happened, I was planning on spending my hard earned money on a new couch. Ours is a mess, and probably a very valid reason for my hips and back hurting most days.We went couch shopping for the whole day and I set my sights on one, but it had to wait. and so understandable (not saying I wasn't disappointed to say no, but it will be there in a few months)
and lets just add in there that fall is my favorite season, other then christmas time, its the season I always want to get out and pick apples, and pumpkins. Get cider and frolic in the fallen leaves.
but because of the financial halt, none of that has been able to happen.

Although things are supposedly scary, with michael working and not getting paid (on the up and coming business with his business partner) and everything being very uncertain, I honestly don't feel too scared or stressed.
It's almost been surreal for a bit, and now its just me trusting in the Lord, and that's great, except for when you tell yourself that you're not worrying, so you won't be prepared :p

Honestly, the hardest thing, is wanting to get out and do stuff, go places. Especially with Halloween coming up next week. I haven't gotten a chance to celebrate Halloween in years, and with the community group we are apart of, we finally have people to do stuff with.
As it happens, this year, two of the people from group are hosting a halloween party, and I so want to go. 
But have you seen the prices of costumes?!?!?!
They're ridiculous!!!!
$60-90 bucks for a crappily made costume that your going to wear for one, MAYBE two days this year, and most likely want a different one the next year.
Idk maybe its just California, but these prices seem ridiculous to me.

But on the brighter side, today my Husband had to pull an all-nighter with his business partner to get stuff done, and me having no plans (like most of the time) expected to just sit at home with Netflix as my date :p
So not really wanting to spend my friday alone, I asked a new friend at group on thursday if she had any plans for friday, and she did, but after the sad apology for having a previous engagement friday evening, her eyes lit up and excitedly exclaimed how her neighbor hosts a neighborhood pumpkin carving event every year and how I should come along!
Of course, I didn't want to intrude on something private, but she insisted that its open to everyone and it would honestly be the coolest thing if i came along.
So BAM! I had plans :)

I spent my evening tonight, completely blessed, hanging out with my new friend Megan and her husband, and their neighbors, carving pumpkins, drinking beer and having a great time!
This right here, was an answer to prayer! Although a small prayer, God has blessed me with friendship and fall activities! 

Although the season is not over, and I'm hoping to celebrate it to the fullest extent that I can in this situation. With all that is going on, its not a total bummer. Its a season of trusting the lord, learning to not get everything you want when you want it, and growth :)

So I would like to wish everyone a Happy Fall! Get out and enjoy the cooler weather. Wear some scarves for me :p haha
Spend time with family, carve some pumpkins, drink some cider, jump in the leaves.
and most of all take joy in the little things, because the fall season is full of them, and they can bring much joy

Stay safe on Halloween Next Week
God Bless~

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

A Summer of Experience and Growth

All I want is a nap, to get some peace of mind and rest as I am tired and sore.
All I can do is think of all the blog posts I haven't written, text all the people I haven't caught up with or want to talk to. All the Moments I want to create with people as this fall season has somehow arrived and settled.
and then, i feel it. The disruption I can't avoid.
A low blood sugar. 
So here I am, drinking pink lemonade and eating a gluten free snicker doodle, writing a long overdo blog post.

Lets see, Well right now my life consists of -
working as a busser at a little restaurant across the street from us called Inka Grill, I admit its a tough job, and my boss can be very hard on me, so it does add an element of stress to my life, but i find working very fulfilling and i love my coworkers, and apparently they love me too :) they are very encouraging and they really keep me going. 
I think getting out and doing something has been healthy.

I've decided that my checks are going into savings and my tips are saving up for a new computer, since this one is literally falling apart :p 

This all started mid August. I had been thinking of getting a job, and one night we finally decided to try the Peruvian restaurant across the street from us, since what, we had been here for almost a year and still hadn't tried it. We had a good experience and the next day, Michael had come home saying that they were hiring. So two days later, on a whim, mid-afternoon, I called. The owner picked up and told me to come on over. Surprised, I threw on clothes and a bit of make up, went in, sat down with her, and was basically told what the job would consist of, and that I was starting the next day.

So BAM, I had a job :) since then its been a bit rocky, frustrating, stressful, emotional and I've been in a bit of pain. But its also fulfilling, and healthy, with the exercise, getting out and being social. I've made friends, and definitely think God had me there for a reason. I was going to wait to find a new job before quitting, but yesterday I had an altercation with my boss and I quit. It was hard but I couldn't keep it together anymore, and just broke down.
I will be looking for a new job, but I am going to take a break until Michael and I figure out where we are moving to in the next month.

Also in August we found a church. The Crossing in Costa Mesa. We passed it time and time again heading to Newport, and finally when I decided it was time for us to find a community and start going to church, we decided to try The Crossing.
Personally, I was leery, the place was big, right on a main road, modern looking, looked like a lot of money goes into it and very showy, so i was personally worried they were going to be a more shallow and showy. More about getting people in, than speaking Gods word and although they are very big on getting people in and accepting everyone. They are also very big on outreach, and helping others through Gods word and through volunteering. Their band is amazing, and although they throw a popular song in there when it related to the weekly message, they sing stuff like Hillsong and others who are very deep into praise and worship. The messages although, not all of them are as deep as others, I found they spoke gods work, they didn't just uplift people and be nicey-nice to satisfy everyone, they said the harsh stuff and the stuff people don't always want to hear. but they also rounded it out to encourage and teach.

Personally I found that out of the 6-7 weeks we have been going, only 1 message didn't speak to me. The atmosphere is so uplifting and social, and bonding, and good. The people are open and they encourage others to communicate. Actually community groups are starting up soon, Michael and I signed up for a group for married couples between the ages of 18-26. So we are very excited to meet other couples, and not just other couples, but couples who share a lover for the Lord. People we can bond with and encourage and be there for each other. 
Community is very important and that is something we both have recently understood and agreed with.

(My mother took some pictures when we brought her last Sunday)

hmm....what's next?...OH
We celebrated out 3 year wedding anniversary!
After months of trying to figure out where we could go for the weekend or something to make it special, we landed on nothing, until the weekend of. and of course our anniversary landed on a Monday and we both had to work. So we wanted to do something special, so after taking our annual yearly anniversary photo (pictured)

We ate at Fig & Olive. 
One of those Restaurants with valet, and the valet parking lot is filled with Bentley's and Ferrari's.
The food is Franch food. there is a wall of just olive oil bottles, of their own olive oil. A couple tree's on the inside, so you can imagine it has a tall ceiling. and the place is almost all cream (it was night, so it could be white)

Thinly sliced braised octopus, marinated bell pepper heirloom potato, black olive, basil, arugula pimenton lemon dressing – Cobrancosa Olive Oil

8oz Creekstone farm filet mignon marinated with rosemary, thyme, garlic, haricot vert caramelized shallot, olive oil chive mashed potato – Arbequina Olive Oil Béarnaise 


four bite-sized desserts
Dessert “Crostini” Chocolate Pot de Crème Crunchy Praline Raspberry Sorbet 


Other then my mother visiting a couple times

Eat Chow

Finally seeing my cousin Doll play at Casa with my friend Nicole

Michael's 25th Birthday

and some other random stuff 

It's been a fairly life changing summer.