Sunday, September 30, 2012


I'm a voracious reader. And when I pick up a book that I like, and get immersed in, I will typically read it in 24 hours. Or, a long weekend, if it's a particularly long book.
That's kind of how I felt about "Wild"- although that wasn't initially the case.
I downloaded a sample of the book on my iPad weeks ago, after seeing it on the New York Times top 10 list for a while. And reading just the sample made my heart hurt and made me cry. It hit a little too close to home- and so I decided I didn't want to read it. I reached the final sample page, where it prompts you to "buy"- and I said no thank you. Book, shut.
But every time I looked at my library, I saw this boot. And every time I looked at the NYT list, I saw "Wild." And finally- I'm embarrassed to say- the camel that broke the straw's back: Reese Witherspoon is going to make it into a movie.
OK. Sold.
I returned to that "buy" page- and buy I did.
That was Friday; it's now Sunday, and the book is shut, because I finished it. I devoured it. I went to church today with puffy eyes from crying.
In my opinion, books fall into levels. There are the mindless reads. There are the books that you keep coming back to, because you love the characters- like catching up with an old friend. There are the books you never touch again- because they impacted you in such a strong way, you can never relive them. There are the books that find their way to Half Price books, and the ones that will collect dust on your bookshelf for eternity, never to be parted with.
This is one of my favorite books to date. It's a memoir; it's hilarious at times, at gut-wrenching at others. And today, I woke up with questions in my head, images from scenes I read. A secret wish that the author was still hiking the trail that the book centers around- even though she isn't.
I'm a sucker for the journey, for adventure, for heartache, for the need to be alone and the need to be surrounded by loved ones. And sometimes, someone else's words and experiences speak so closely to your heart, that you just absorb all of them.
I'd tell you to read this book, but not because it's easy. If you're like me, you'll find yourself in front of a mirror with a few challenges for yourself.
So, that's my review! Take it or leave it. Sample, or "buy." I had to share my thoughts on it while it's fresh on the brain! :)
Any other good books out there to devour?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Obviously, I'm a lover of words. I love writing them, I love speaking them, I love reading them.

And- I feel like what we say to people- whether we're writing them or texting them or talking to them- is SO important. It makes such a big difference.

I work in a stressful business. And I find that sometimes, it's easier to find the "what's wrong" than point out the "what went right."

Isn't that true in life, too? It seems easier to give someone "constructive criticism" than encouragement. It's easier to tell your loved one what you need from them, instead of what you can give. It's easier to complain, than initiate real change.

I'm trying to be aware of that these days. Giving encouragement. Because everyone needs to know what they're doing right. I think we're all too aware of our faults.

Sometimes- being the one to encourage means you're left a little empty. You need someone to do the encouraging right back- and that doesn't always happen right away.

But then you read something- a blog post, a passage- and you feel encouraged. Your dreams feel validated. The things you're patiently waiting for- that just seem a bit far away- feel a little closer to reality.

You spend a little time in prayer, and you find fulfillment and encouragement that is lasting. And you hold onto it, really tightly.

You go for a run or a bike ride and remember that you're strong, that you've got it together (most days, ha!) and give thanks that you're healthy.

Encouragement comes in a lot of different forms.

For me, I'm going to keep handing out those positive words. There's a bit of a shortage; and I plan to make up for it in my little corner of the world.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Comfort Zone Shake-Ups

I'm trying to get into a new Fall routine. And so far, so good.

I still work out every day or every other day, but not quite so intensely. No big races to train for until 2013!

(Turkey Trot 5k on Thanksgiving not included. Any race that includes copious amounts of food and a big nap later on are OK in my book.)

I'm also treating myself on Friday's with a walk to Starbucks in the morning. I sit out on their patio, read a book on my iPad, and enjoy a Pumpkin Spice Latte.

Yes, I know. Sounds pretty good right about now.

But I'm also finding that I need that little... spark of challenge. For someone who doesn't like change, I sure do love those butterflies that come with doing something out of the ordinary.

I'm trying to expand myself in different ways right now. Falling into a new routine, and pushing myself at the same time.

I'm on a committee for my sorority that- so far- has been so much fun. In the coming months, I'll get to travel to Kansas City, Boston & Denver. New people to work with, presenting topics in front of a group. Right up my alley- and a challenge, too.

I'm also contemplating joining the Tulsa Bicycle Group (let's hope they don't laugh me off the road!) and picking up my never-ending quest for a church home.

Routine and change. Comfort and challenge. Stability and shake-ups.

I'm finding that I like a mix of both. I need a mix of both.

It's certainly shaping the way I see 2013, too. I already know I'll go into next year with less fear, fewer reservations, and more closure. And I think that's a good foundation for some big, exciting new challenges. In fact, that's my greatest hope for the next year- that I push myself out of my comfort zone.

Because I have a gut feeling that some great rewards are on the other side of those challenges.

2013! Getting ahead of myself here. For now, let's get through the week! And look forward to that Pumpkin Spice Latte on Friday. :)

Monday, September 24, 2012

Weekend Update

I spent the weekend in Arkansas, and loved every second of it!

Well... maybe not Arkansas getting killed in their football game. And we can't even speak of OU's loss.

Bad football weekend.

But! I had so much fun with my mom, sister and youngest brother. It was "family weekend" at the University of Arkansas. So, we family'd it up.

Arkansas has one of the prettiest stadiums ever. The view just can't be beat. To the left of this photo- the Ozark mountains. Makes we want to hike, ride my bike, cliff-dive! (Brother... invite your cool older sister next time!)


We were up in the nosebleed section, with a perfect view of the sunset and wind in our hair.
We all had a great time. We stopped at the fraternity house for a beer, watched the game, ate dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings (to watch both teams lose) and crashed at our hotel in Bentonville.
By the way, if ever I move to Arkansas... I'm living in Bentonville.
Sunday, we ate at Denny's... and I took a conference call in a McDonald's parking lot in Springdale, Arkansas before heading home.
Glamorous life! :)
Monday came fast. I'm not sure I'm quite ready for another long week; but it's here, whether we like it or not!
Hope you all had a great weekend! I'm off to squeeze in a run and buy pet food before heading into work.
Life; still glamorous! :)

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Farewell, Summer

I can't believe I'm actually going to say this- but I'm a little sad summer is ending.

Summer is, by far, my least favorite season. Hot, sticky, never-ending. And there's something about kids not being in school that just makes it seem like such a transition season. One we just have to get on the other side of, quickly.

And maybe all of those reasons are why I've always loved Fall. It feels more... stable. Even though it's the most fleeting season (at least in Oklahoma)- Fall marks the beginning of new. We've made it through the miserable summer, now we can have some fun. Cool mornings, warm coffee, heater off and on. College football. Starbucks. I love fall.

But this year- I am honestly sad to see the summer go. Maybe because I spent more time this summer enjoying each day instead of wishing the time away. Maybe it's because this summer, in particular, held so much challenge and change for me. A new job, intense race training, a best friend's wedding.

So much life- rolled into just a few months!

It was a good summer. And so much more than just a "transition" season this year.

I'm ready for Fall. For those cool mornings and warm drinks. For scarves- and yes, maybe a little stability.

But I'm also finding that maybe change- doesn't affect me the way it used to. Maybe when you experience SO much change- you kind of get used to it. Even embrace it in a way. Especially when you find yourself better on the other side.

Am I actually embracing change?

I guess there's nothing like ushering in a new season.... to find out.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Hopes & Wishes

I wrote this post yesterday, but it wouldn't post! So now you can enjoy it today. :) Happy Wednesday!

I've decided life isn't going to get *less* busy.... so I may as well just tote my laptop with me wherever I go! I can bank-on-the-go.... checklist-on-the-go.... and naturally, blog-on-the-go!

So today, I'm at the car shop getting two new front tires for my car. This comes after getting two new back tires about a month ago, along with new brake pads.

And, what the heck. I threw in an oil change today, too. Because... at this point... why not?!

I know I sometimes blog about this whole "being an adult" thing. Sometimes, it's so wonderful and glorious.

Here are times I love being an adult:
-when my house is clean
-when a meal is cooking in the crock pot, and I think: yay! I'm domestic!
-when I have "people over"
-when my lawn is mowed
-when my car gets washed
-when I get a paycheck

Here are times I loathe being an adult:
-when my house is messy
-when I only have Healthy Choice meals in the freezer
-when I stress about having "people over"
-when my lawn looks like a raggedy mess and there's a giant tree limb covering my backyard
-when my car needs four new tires, new brake pads and an oil change
-when my paycheck goes to cleaning, groceries, lawn and car care

I know, I know. We all have our "lists." Being an adult is just a mixed bag of fun and freedom.... and rules and responsibilities.

But then I think- what a blessing it all is! That house, that paycheck. Even that tree limb. It's all just life, and it's worth embracing every second, every day.

And sometimes, in the midst of all of this "adult" business- we can have our child-like hopes and wishes, too.

I'm pretty sure that magic fairy is on her way right now to remove the tree limb from my backyard.

Hopes and wishes, right?

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Bumps, Bruises, Bikes & Blogs

You know when you stop doing something for so long... you're not sure how to get started again?

Hi! I'm Lindsay. And I stopped blogging... and didn't know how to start again.

So much... life!... happened.  So many experiences, so many memories, so many challenges and triumphs and daily-grind-things happened.

How do you pick back up? Where do you start?

But, I guess it's like riding a bike. Sometimes you just have to jump back on- and trust that those muscles just kick in.

My writing muscles are getting plenty of work. I forgot what it's like to write, write, write all day long... for a living. Did you know I write anywhere from 24 to 28 stories a day? That may not seem like a lot- but it all adds up to about 40 minutes of words.  40 minutes of listening- takes an entire day of writing.

And, I'm just loving it. I forgot what it's like- to enjoy working every day. It's not something to take for granted.

Speaking of jumping on that old bicycle- my leg muscles have gotten plenty of work, too. I've spent a lot of time on my bike the past few months. And running. And swimming. I finished my last sprint triathlon of the year last weekend- my first "open water" lake swim to boot- and it was SO intense!

But if there's anything I've learned in 2012- it's that the toughest uphill climbs- both on the bike and off- are the most rewarding at the end of the day.

All this to say- life is good! I'm proud that 9 months into a year with more than a few struggles- I'm still standing strong, crossing the finish line.

And I know there's nothing I can't tackle. A few bumps, bruises and broken hearts might happen along the way. And the blog posts- may not come easily.

But- it's all just like riding a bike. Right?
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