Monday, June 24, 2013

Proud Parent of Flower Babies!!!

2 years ago, I was blessed to have my Grandma come help me plant flowers outside my apartment. Ok, who am I kidding...Gma did all the planting while I provided moral support. Here's Gma (or Sarge as my fam so fondly calls her) in 2011 showing me how to water my flowers. The other 2 pics with her are my Shasta Daisies after Gma first planted them (top) and then when they bloomed the first year (bottom).

I wanted a K-State flower garden, so Gma helped me pick out cute purple and white flowers at Wally World. I soon found out they weren't ALL purple and white, but I was still one proud flower mama. 

Fast forward 2 years to 2013. Besides my Shasta Daisies, the only other plants that bloomed this year were a couple tulips. This could be because of the fact that I never watered my flowers last year and hadn't watered them this year until 2 days ago. My flower bed was a hot mess. 
Here's the "before" pics I took on Saturday. To the left of the daisies are my lilies that aren't in bad shape. In the yellow pot is Tropicana Light, an orange tree the parentals bought for me. She was a good tree until last summer when I forgot to water her. I couldn't keep Tropicana Light alive, yet somehow a maple tree (right side of the above pic collage) decided to start growing between my daisies and lilies. Go figure. The other potted plants belong to my roomie but they were all dead. 

Inspired by a friend who helped me repot Sophie, an indoor plant that I had also neglected (notice a pattern here?!?) and my daisies that were blooming, I decided to give my flower bed some MUCH needed TLC. First I weeded as much as possible. Next I removed the crazy tree. Ok, I got it started, but my roomie had to use her Superwoman strength to pull out the roots. I also said farewell to Tropicana Light. Possibly inspired by my work, my roomie planted new babies in her pots. Finally, I gave my girls a good drink and put down new mulch. Look at the updated flower bed!!

I thought my daisies could use another friend, so I purchased my very first Hibiscus. Mama had beautiful Hibiscus plants at home, and growing up we nicknamed them her "biscuit" plants. Meet Grace, my Hibiscus. 

I decided Grace is the perfect name for this beauty. I got her on clearance for less than $3 but didn't know she'd be that price until I checked out at Water's yesterday. The tag said $12.99, so paying less than $3 was serendipity! If she doesn't make it, I'm not out a lot of money. She will definitely need prayers and lots of love to survive. Stay tuned for updates on Grace and all the flower babies. 

I love looking back at those pictures from 2011, especially the ones of my daisies. I was SO EXCITED when I had 9 bloom. Look at them today!!  Such happy flowers that are full of life and lots of happiness!!

I know God hasn't brought Prince Charming into my life because he was waiting for me to confess my sins and ask Jesus into my heart. He wanted someone who would be equally yoked. Maybe He was also waiting for me to grow up a little. Well, now that I own an apron, have learned to love ironing, and jazzed up my flower bed, maybe the good Lord will decide this domestic diva is ready for Prince Charming to come riding up on his white horse!!!

By the way, if you want to read another blog post about my Gma and those baby daisies, click here.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

A Birthday Unlike Any Other

There was a time in my life where I dreaded birthdays.  Don't get me wrong--I love cards via "real" mail, cupcakes with sprinkles, and birthday wishes from 450+ friends on Facebook.  But, with all the joy that came with each passing birthday was the reminder that I was one year older and STILL single.

Now that my 33rd birthday is just a few hours away, I am actually excited.  Like REALLY excited.  "What's changed?" you ask.  Did I finally find my Prince Charming and start a meaningful relationship that will soon include wedded bliss?  Nope, not at all.  I've started a meaningful relationship with someone even more important: the Lord!

Now that I have God at the center of my life, I no longer cringe when someone mentions getting older.  I know He has glorious plans for me, and those plans include sending Prince Charming at just the right time.  While I used to worry with each passing year that my biological clock was ticking, I no longer pay attention to the statistics the come with "older" women having children.  If it's in God's plan, I will defy all those statistics and have kids because I know children are truly a gift from above.

IT'S MY BIRTHDAY!!  Tomorrow I will shout that from the rooftops!  I look at it as one more day God put me on this earth to make a difference in the lives of others.  I will pray as I do each morning that He will send me people who need to see His glory or experience His love.  Each day holds the same suspense as opening presents because I have no idea what exciting plans God has in store for me.  Isn't that one of the greatest joys in life?

Tomorrow I will bust out the sprinkles, light the candles (scratch that--I don't want to start any fires), and get ready to celebrate another wonderful year in this world.  32 was by far the BEST year ever, and I know 33 will be even better!  Have a blessed week!
One of the many highlights of the last year includes being baptized on October 21, 2012!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Stop Killing the Love Of Twitter!

Have you caught the Twitter craze yet? Crazy question, right? Some of you are thinking, "Um, HELLO! What social media rock have you been hiding under for the past few years?!?" Ease up for a minute because I know plenty of people who refuse to jump into Twitter. Don't bother giving them a life jacket because they don't need it. Then there are others who take off their flip flops and dip their feet into the Twitter ocean, but quickly turn around and head back to the safety of the beach where they are comfortable. 

What's stopping these people from one of the greatest social media tools out there?!? THE RULES!!! It's people like me who hand people a list of hyperlinks for getting the most out of Twitter. Geesh! It seems like EVERYONE has some rule you should follow on Twitter, and the amount of rules is crazy. Some of the most ridiculous ones I used to believe (which gives me the right to make fun of them now) include:

*Be original. Don't just retweet what everyone else says. 
Why not? There are plenty of people in the world who are smarter and funnier than me. If I learn from or laugh at their Tweets, why not share that wisdom and humor with others?? Why reinvent the wheel? Retweet away, my friends!

*Decide who you want to be on Twitter.
This one makes me giggle. Um, don't I want to be ME?!? So many people today think we should separate our personal and professional lives--and pick one of those lives to portray on Twitter. Am I starting to sound like a cat food commercial? Get it?? Cats have 9 lives and I'm talking about establishing which "life" you want to lead on Twitter...oy. That joke was a lot funnier when I first started typing it. 


Why do I need to establish a profile that only relates to one aspect of my life? I really can't do that. As an educator, I believe student learning should extend beyond the typical school day. Aren't I being a hypocrite if I say my personal life and professional life are two separate things? My professional life certainly doesn't end at 3:30 every day. And I carry my faith and Wildcat pride--two major aspects of my personal life--with me every day to work. So, scroll through my Tweets and you'll find great tips for implementing technology in the classroom, powerful words from Max Lucado and Joyce Meyer, links to news articles and blogs about a variety of education-related topics, and thoughts about and by my beloved Wildcats. I don't actively seek followers. I'm not some high-profile user with over a million followers. I'm just Jenn, and the beauty of throwing out those rules is that you get variety when you read my Tweets. 

Disclaimer: If you're a business on Twitter trying to market a product and connect with clients, scratch everything I've said up to this point. But if you're just an average Joe wanting to jump into the world of Twitter, don't let people scare you off with all these so-called rules you should follow on Twitter. Just throw on that life jacket, plug your nose, and dive into the wonderful world of Twitter--you'll be glad you joined the fun!